horrible idea: under communism, we might still have organizations which are logistically and financially similar to (1) amazon and (2) the stock market

Submitted by twovests in just_post

amazon because we'll have desire and need to efficiently and responsively transfer goods across the world (and commu-amazon would not be as costly to humanity, since the direct overhead of capitalism would be gone, and we'd better railroad infrastructure for moving goods. also, less addresses to keep track of, and therefore a shallower graph, allowing more automation of transportation.

if we all became socialist overnight, and jeff bezos had an ebeneezer scrooge esque visit from the ghost of radical communist influencers like Karl Marx, Isaac Asimov, and John Oliver*, we'd wake up and go to amazon dot com

* footnote: this is a joke. i do not consider john oliver to be a radical leftist. do you think his research / writing team is unionized? i'd think he'd never shut up about it if they were! i know jokes are ruined if u kill them, but (1) i standy by it, im funny and (2) cant have anyone thinking i stan john oliver... .

(footnote 2: we can convince capitalists that communist is good by rephrasing marx's concept of contradiction as "market inefficiency". e.g. i would argue that corn subsidies are contradictory. that's a market inefficiency! maybe we can get tucker carlson to say "we are eating ALL THE MEAT on the TAXPAYERS DIME. and that's why your KIDS CANT EAT MEAT" and a bunch of secret socialist points.

also,... the stock market? for a good amount of time in this sudden shift to communism, we're still gonna have money as a concept. i think even marx said something like this.

to that extent, with money being ingrained as this high-level concept of a unit of economic activity. "we need to produce and transport these syringes" has costs! how do you get the materials, how do you process them, etc. it's easier to reason about that if you know can quantify those various costs in one abstract unit, and every entity you interact with also can quantify those costs with the same unit.

to this extent, we have a stock market, which allows people to invest these units in the future. but the stock market prioritizes short-term personal profit, whereas ideally, we'd be investing long-term in things in social good and stability. decision making here would basically be the same dynamics!

except, the best winner will be one that can identify the way to maximize every traders stock market points. (or so i assume. i dont know how the stock market works.) it's literally like that tweet, "if both basketball teams worked together they could score so many points"

so how might this look? IMAGINE...

chapter 1

the year is 2027.. u wake up. everyone has decided that it's time to give communism a try. scientists do not know why everyone woke up thinking that but who cares?

you are reading your phone on the news. u quickly become aware of the economics. the power the internet runs on, the individual providers. who's incentivized to keep it running now? can these fragile networks survive a sudden shift in economic model? do people just volunteer, or do people keep working their jobs? wait, a lot of these jobs shouldn't exist. jobs have to shift right?

fuck... how do i get my meds? i need money, right? is my job still paying me? ... do i still even go to my job? wait, should i volunteer for something different than my job?

im all for this but i dont know what to do!

you text ur friend. "what do i do?? im excited but scared."

"oh" your friend replies "lol. lmao. dont worry. go to amazon dot com."

"what??" you say. "are you not on board with the communist utopia?"

"seriously go to amazon dot com. they have ur answers"

you go. wow. your meds are sitting, ready for you. one click to refill your prescription.

"yeah so, major pharmacies and healthcare systems are already in the system. because capitalism ended, the entire data marketing analytics people have nothing to do, so they built infrastructure into amazon using a standard protocol. and the surveillance capitalists had nothing to do either, so they used their analytics to help making probablistically more optimal supply distributions. you already had a prescription with CVS. of course, it's taking time to get smaller providers and pharamcies integrated."

amazing. you inspect the element. you see a new tag. you spend chapter 2 reading the MDN. apparently E2EE webcomponents are available and can communicate through amazon for logistics without exposing patient data. neat, you say, returning back to chapter 1.

you click order, and you're amazed: they will be arriving in a day? amazing??

you search "nintendo switch" and it costs only $300. how does that work? you pester your friend again.

they respond, "oh right," uneasily, "we still have roads, and we're going to use them when building out better transport, right." you nod. they can't see you nod, because this just a text chat on your phone. but it makes sense: we're not going to tear up perfectly good asphalt out of spit, especially when it would make it so much faster and efficient to build our railways. and it still makes sense to have paved road for pedestrians, those who really do need vehicles, emergency vehicles. etc. you sure hope there aren't police.

they continue. "yeah the government has no way to tell what's artistically cool or interesting. funny enough, the art commodity market remains one of the last vestiges of capitalism. a lot of artists have quit, because they no longer need it to live, and have pursued more rewarding hobbies, like other forms of art. we don't have marvel movies anymore, but so far nobody has complained.

ok im getting tired of this post but in the u go to work again and things are pretty different but that's ok then u go back home and watch sponge bob square pants and this time he can say Fuck


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flabberghaster wrote

The thing is, you're absolutely right. "Finance" does serve a purpose. I don't think there'd be a stock market where rich people gamble on pieces of companies like poker chips, but the finance industry does serve a purpose under capitalism and a similar thing would be needed: the allocation of huge amounts of society's resources. Financial companies are just capitalist central planners, and they optimize to keep themselves rich and keep capitalism running. Such a thing would be needed under socialism too, but with different incentive structures and goals.