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Thursday, July 3, 2008

Is capitalism evil? Is property evil? Is Communism evil?

Trecheng Breth Féne (Irish Triads)
- 177 -

Trí búada insci: fosta, gáis, gairde.

Three glories of speech: steadiness, wisdom, brevity.

Capitalists, Utilitarians and Marxists (Communists)
It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard for their own interest.
-Adam Smith
Science is the great antidote to the poison of enthusiasm and superstition.

Consumption is the sole end and purpose of all production; and the interest of the producer ought to be attended to, only so far as it may be necessary for promoting that of the consumer.
Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations, Book IV Chapter VIII

According to the system of natural liberty, the sovereign has only three duties to attend to ... first, the duty of protecting the society from the violence and invasion of other independent societies; secondly, the duty of protecting, so far as possible, every member of the society from the injustice or oppression of every other member of it, or the duty of establishing an exact administration of justice, and thirdly, the duty of erecting and maintaining certain public works and certain public institutions, which it can never be for the interest of any individual, or small number of individuals, to erect and maintain...
The Wealth of Nations, Book IV, Chapter IX

The invisible hand:

Every individual...generally, indeed, neither intends to promote the public interest, nor knows how much he is promoting it. By preferring the support of domestic to that of foreign industry he intends only his own security; and by directing that industry in such a manner as its produce may be of the greatest value, he intends only his own gain, and he is in this, as in many other cases, led by an invisible hand to promote an end which was no part of his intention.
ADAM SMITH, The Wealth of Nations, Book IV Chapter II

The division of labour:

The greatest improvement in the productive powers of labour, and the greater part of the skill, dexterity and judgement with which it is any where directed, or applied, seem to have been the effects of the division of labour.
ADAM SMITH, The Wealth of Nations, Book I, Chapter I

The difference between the most dissimilar characters, between a philosopher and a common street porter, for example, seems to arise not so much from nature, as from habit, custom, and education.
ADAM SMITH The Wealth of Nations, Book I, Chapter II
The whole annual produce of the land and labour of every country...naturally divides itself into three parts; the rent of the land, the wages of labour, and the profits of stock.
ADAM SMITH The Wealth of Nations, Book I, Chapter XI
Population, when unchecked, increases in a geometrical ratio.
- Thomas Robert Malthus

Hard as it may appear in individual cases, dependent poverty ought to be held disgraceful.
-Thomas Malthus
Neither a state nor a bank ever have had unrestricted power of issuing paper money without abusing that power.
- David Ricardo
Gold and silver, like other commodities, have an intrinsic value, which is not arbitrary, but is dependent on their scarcity, the quantity of labour bestowed in procuring them, and the value of the capital employed in the mines which produce them.
David Ricardo

If we were left to ourselves, unfettered by legislative enactments, we should gradually withdraw our capital from the cultivation of such lands, and import the produce which is at present raised upon them.
David Ricardo
There is no way of keeping profits up but by keeping wages down.
David Ricardo
JEREMY BENTHAM : It is the greatest good to the greatest number of people which is the measure of right and wrong

Workers of the world unite! You have nothing to lose but your chains!
- Karl Marx
From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.
- Karl Marx
The theory of Communism may be summed up in one sentence: Abolish all private property.
Karl Marx
(later French Marxist Pierre Joseph Proudhon said “Property is theft” )

Religious suffering is, at one and the same time, the expression of real suffering and a protest against real suffering. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people. {Often quoted “RELIGION IS THE OPIATE OF THE PEOPLE”)
Karl Marx, Critique of Hegel's Philosophy
Capital is reckless of the health or length of life of the laborer, unless under compulsion from society
Karl Marx

Landlords, like all other men, love to reap where they never sowed.
Karl Marx

The class struggle necessarily leads to the dictatorship of the proletariat.
- Karl Marx
While the miser is merely a capitalist gone mad, the capitalist is a rational miser.
-Karl Marx

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