one of capitalism’s basic tricks for selling stuff to you is to put the doubt into your head that you are WITHOUT something that you NEED
this isn’t a REAL need but it is a method of tricking you into believing that what capitalism wants you to buy is something you supposedly lack in your life
and with a lack of oversight and control on this system of propaganda delivery, capitalism could manage to sell our basic needs to us, and for those it has thrown into poverty it works to convince them that to climb the ladder is how they can acquire the more expensive ‘needs’ capitalism sells to them on top of their basic needs
the meagre offerings of society you have aren’t good enough. if you can just scrape together more capital you too can live the fabulous and happy life of people in the next highest economic branch to you! you, too can have BETTER things, and live a BETTER life. you can eat better food, drive a better car, live in a better house, have better clothes, have a more fulfilled life because your consumption of goods is ‘better’
better according to whom?
this is the PRIMARY LIE of capitalism
if scarcity didn’t exist, if everyone could have all their basic needs fulfilled, then capitalism would have no ground to stand on.
the only reason capitalism stands on the ground it does is because it tricks you into believing that there is not enough for everyone.
if this is so true, why are the grocery stores filled with items that regularly go unsold? why do we have sectors of the economy dedicated to selling you transportation or housing?
if there were truly no scarcity, if it were eliminated outright, it wouldn’t happen under a capitalist system, because the capitalist system has a vested interest in keeping its power over you by holding the threat of scarcity over your head. for everything.
@CyclopsCaveman capitalism fundamentally Does Not Work without scarcity. If there's enough for everyone, there's no opportunity for sales. This is why they have enclosed or destroyed the commons wherever they can, this is why farmers pour out millions of gallons of milk,etc. Scarcity is the fundament of capitalism but our basic needs of food, shelter, and safety are easily met unless you enforce scarcity.
@CyclopsCaveman Aren't humans fundamentally the kind of creatures who, if they already have X, want X+1, or even Z?
Sure, advertising tries to convince us that we'll be happier with more or "better"; I don't deny that that's a feature of modern capitalism. But I think that advertising succeeds because it connects with tendencies deep within us.
@mpjgregoire perhaps, but that’s also willfully ignoring the tendency of humans to want to care for other humans and support others
regardless of the the true essence of something as vague and undefinable as human nature, if advertising can make us more greedy, more selfish, and more focused on individualistic desires, what’s to say something similar cannot make us mire giving, more compassionate, and more focused on the good of the human race as whole?
@CyclopsCaveman Humans certainly do have many different tendencies and desires, but we are difficult creatures to satisfy. That's not all bad of course: the greatest human accomplishments are the fruit of ambition and restlessness.
I wonder if sociology can tell us which societies are most content? The Inuit? Nepalese? Tahitians? Monks? Definitely not billionaires or political leaders.
One of the most glaring contradictions of the "free market" is that according to its own theory it only works if all participants are rational actors, but our "free market" basically runs on advertisement perfectly tuned to short circuit our rational decision making.
(not that the "free market" ever made sense of doesn't have a dozen other fatal flaws)
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