The Duke of Dumb

Postby TMLutas on Thu Nov 30, 2006 9:13 am

Lazerus wrote:
It's not a matter of OK or not but of various levels of suck. When you go through the industrial revolution, you're not going to get everything right on the first iteration. Heck, a century from now, our current "enlightened" work practices will likely horrify the great grandkids. So you look to improve but you look to do it in a sustainable way. Socialism isn't sustainable.

If you run a factory and a finger gets mashed, you lose production, you lose money. Factory workers aren't productive on day 1. It can take a year of work before you really start making money on them so they have incentives to get things safer because they want to maximize profit. Those that do not do that eventually fall behind those that do. It's an education process all around and it took some time to get it right (work is ongoing). Unionism was one response and, in the private sector, has largely done its job. Companies work hard so their workers don't need an adversarial union to get a safe workplace with decent compensation because unions come with long-term costs that never go away (rigidity in work rules for instance). Socialism, unlike unionism, was never a sustainable response because it fails at job #1 of any economic system which is to set prices. If you can't do that, you'll wreck the economy.

To the extent that soft socialism allows a parallel private economy to exist, socialism can blindly imitate the private price setters and get away with it for a time. Eventually the system breaks down though, no matter how soft the socialism, because of the distortions introduced by the government portion of the economy and the constant temptation to turn more over to the government for political reasons.


It'd be nice if it worked that way, and sometimes it does, but sometimes it dosn't. The reason those policies were persued is because, for most factories back then, it took next to no training to make a factory workers. So if one gets injured, their out the door.

So what your saying, in essense, is you do not have a moral problem with the idea of a job where you will regularly be abused, taken advantage of, and subjected to extreme physical danger, and should you be injured and rendered incapable of working, your only kickback will be your kick out the door?


It's like a time machine of embarrassingly debunked pro-socialist arguments. "It'd be nice if it worked that way, and sometimes it does, but sometimes it dosn't[sic]" is a textbook case. On the off chance you don't realize it, humans are imperfect beings. If they were perfect, any system would work. The difference between systems is what happens when humans make mistakes. In the above scenario, the guys who chew through workers in a capitalist system lose their best workers to bosses who lure them away with safe workplace rules and they lose money on high labor turnover costs. Marginally, they cannot expand as fast in the good times because of this and they will fail more surely and quicker in the bad times than their otherwise equivalent competitors. In socialism, none of this feedback occurs. There are no competitors, or no meaningful ones. Until someone with the power to change things is affected personally and creates a "crisis" the problem of poor safety just gets ignored as a cost of doing business and complaining about it is unpatriotic and economic sabotage.

Comparing real world capitalism with theoretical socialism is fundamentally unfair. You compare the theoretical with the theoretical and the real with the real. Capitalism wins on both counts.

added:
Just to be absolutely clear, the difference in the two systems is what do you do when immoral jerks behave like immoral jerks. I do not morally condone either immorality or jerks. Showily throwing a few guys up against the wall may make you feel better but it just doesn't work. I'd like effective action to fix the problem.
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Postby TMLutas on Thu Nov 30, 2006 9:43 am

Lazerus wrote:
Assuming (for the moment) that this is actually happening and we're not getting a bunch of sour grapes, here are the systems that are being overridden to achieve this situation:

1. The primary care physician who is supposed to be riding herd on the gaggle of specialists and preventing this sort of behavior is falling down on the job.

2. Neurosurgery is not being led properly and needs a management high colonic to flush out the stupid.

3. Neuroradiology is not standing up for itself appropriately, letting it get railroaded. A management colonic is appropriate here too.

4. The Mortality and Morbidity (M&M) team which is specifically constituted to catch this sort of thing is falling down on the job.

5. The Hospital board has its head up its tail and isn't appropriately managing legal liability via its legal team.

6. The state regulators are asleep at the switch.

That makes it, by my count, six separate screwups that have to happen for this situation to be a real one in the current US system. That isn't to say that it's just made up, just that I don't particularly understand how socialism would improve on the current system.

In socialism, you just wouldn't have a neuroradiology department. Problem solved, no? Oh, the patients would have a higher M&M rate but we could be socially proud of our results!


Wrong on all counts. You don't get an MD by being stupid. They just really, really don't care about their patiants. They take the minimum level of training required to be state certified (which can range from semi-reasonable training to a 5min breifing video), and call that enough. The hospitals ass is covered, so they, in turn, don't care.

Neuroradiology, as a specialist department, dosn't have control over patiants.

How do you come to the conclusion a socialist medical system would have no such department?


Later in this message you say that you are in intern. Unless you have a very different program than my wife attended, you've essentially admitted that you're a clueless newbie when it comes to medical business. Internship is a time to learn not to kill the patients, not one where the business side is drilled into you. As an aside, I have helped my internist wife through her residency and currently help her run her startup private practice. It is very likely that I've consulted on more doctor/doctor fights than you have as my wife was born/raised/originally trained in Romania and I translate culture for her.

About your assertion that MDs can't be stupid, not caring about your patients is stupid. Do you really need me to explain why? As you assert that neurosurgery doesn't care about their patients QED.

News flash, neurosurgery generally isn't working as primary in cases that neuroradiology would legitimately be pulled in on so the PCP is still in the mix somewhere and neurosurgery is in the same boat as neuroradiology, at the mercy of the PCP who decides who to pull in on consult.

Speaking of who gets pulled in, you do realize that there's a natural bias in highly specialized departments to over-inflate their importance, usage, revenue, and thus organizational power, right? This is something of a messy debate that happens all throughout medicine. That's why M&M is there, to figure out what went wrong and to get the line drawn better next time. Either the M&M boys are out to lunch or the neurosurgery guys are drawing the line appropriately, keeping costs down by not including neuroradiology unnecessarily. You don't address this point (or most of my others) at all. If Neurosurgery is screwing up, the M&M statistics should be visibly worse than comparable hospitals and the ambulance chasers would be circling the larger institution chanting "class action". And don't even try to tell me that all hospitals are like that because that dog just doesn't hunt.

Lazerus wrote:
Labor is only disposable where labor is plentiful in relation to the jobs available. Huge shifts (like the industrial revolution) that create masses of labor that need to go "elsewhere" create those conditions but those conditions are temporary. Jobs are created that sucks up the cheap labor and then employers have to compete with each other for labor, raising working conditions and salaries in the process.

We're moving into an era where labor is becoming scarce. Even the PRC is starting to have wage inflation. We're right at the peak of labor availability and we just need to let those greeedy capitalists keep making those jobs and things will improve on the labor compensation front.

As for the US medical system, you do realize it's half socialized already, right? I get 4 CDs a year from Medicare telling me what prices they'll pay for various CPT codes and private insurance companies just key off Medicare's government set price list. That's not a free market.


No, the current US system is regulated, there's a difference. Regulation without some sort of kickback just kneecaps buisnesses. Like utilites, utilites are held to very high standards, but are basicly given a legal monopoly so they can stay afloat. That's socialism desinged to give a power grid that can stand up to everything and a nuclear strike (exaggeration, I know). Not letting the medical industry negotiate like any other buisness would, that's regulation. They get a swift kick in the crotch and a "Good luck."


The power grid sometimes can't withstand a squirrel. US partially socialized grids fail and the socialism fans in the EU point fingers and tut tut about our unsafe and short sighted capitalism. Similar failures happen the next week or the next year in those more socialized systems and there is silence over it.

Ownership, to mean anything, has to involve control. The more that prices are set by government boards, the less likely that you get a good outcome. But you're an intern. You know next to nothing about CPT, ICD, HCPS multi-level coding especially their interactions with the cost of the medical procedures and diagnoses they represent and the cross-subsidization they cover up. You get to that later in the process. The draining of control to set prices negatively affects medical care and it's a socialist style control takeaway. It's difficult to get into the economic technical details because people start inappropriately waving around Godwin's law.
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Postby BrockthePaine on Thu Nov 30, 2006 10:14 am

TMLutas wrote:The power grid sometimes can't withstand a squirrel. US partially socialized grids fail and the socialism fans in the EU point fingers and tut tut about our unsafe and short sighted capitalism. Similar failures happen the next week or the next year in those more socialized systems and there is silence over it.

That's quite true. Several years back my father was running a city government which owned its own powerplant and the local electric lines; he'd get calls every month or so from somebody complaining about their power going out for five minutes. Usually it was squirrels; about once a year a tree would spontaneously fall over and take out the lines, and the wind would occasionally break something too. The nasty time was when we got three inches of freezing rain in 16 hours. (The next day was pretty - it looked like all the trees were made of glass. Unfortunately they also broke like glass. The trees above my driveway, which were normally about 15-20 feet up, were touching the ground and we couldn't get our cars out. I had to go beat the ice off the trees with a shovel and hope they didn't fall on me.)
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Postby StrangeWulf13 on Thu Nov 30, 2006 1:29 pm

I say this in all due seriousness:

LAZERUS GOT PWNED!!

End of transmission. :D
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Postby The JAM on Thu Nov 30, 2006 4:45 pm

Define "pwned" :D
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Postby Canis_lupus on Thu Nov 30, 2006 4:57 pm

A corruption of the word "Owned." This originated in an online game called Warcraft, where a map designer misspelled "owned." When the computer beat a player, it was supposed to say, so-and-so "has been owned."

Instead, it said, so-and-so "has been pwned."

It basically means "to own" or to be dominated by an opponent or situation, especially by some god-like or computer-like force.

"Man, I rock at my job, but I still got a bad evaluation. I was pwned."

OR

"That team totally pwned us."
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Postby Rangers on Thu Nov 30, 2006 5:52 pm

Okay, now pronounce it, and use it in three sentences. Preferably ones that don't contain the word 'got'.
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Postby Madmoonie on Thu Nov 30, 2006 6:05 pm

Well, as a gamer, I can say that I am quite familiar with pwnage. Basically its 'owned' but a P. As in 'puh-owned' or PWNED!

Also along the gaming, a friend and I came up with an excerpt from the Gospel according to Gamers: "And thus I sayeth unto thee....BOO-YAH!"
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Postby Canis_lupus on Thu Nov 30, 2006 6:09 pm

I know this is a rhetorical question but im bored so here it goes.

Pronounced the same as Owned.(Since its a typo)

1. "Sir, you have just been pwned"
2. "I am so angry. I just pwned that guy but then he logged of before i could gloat"
3. "Damn, I dont want to fight him, i will get pwned."
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Postby Madmoonie on Thu Nov 30, 2006 6:21 pm

I always pronouced it with the 'P.'
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Postby Canis_lupus on Thu Nov 30, 2006 6:28 pm

I usualy do also. but since it is a typo i dont know its also pronounced the same. looking back i guess not.

Out of curiosity what is the game you are currently Pwning in?
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Postby Madmoonie on Thu Nov 30, 2006 6:36 pm

I pwn (I wish) in Battlefield 2142.
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Postby Squeaky Bunny on Thu Nov 30, 2006 7:02 pm

Madmoonie wrote:I always pronouced it with the 'P.'


Same phonic as corn pone or tone. Long O prominent.
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Postby Canis_lupus on Thu Nov 30, 2006 7:06 pm

I have seen people debate this topic pretty intensely. either they go with the fact that its a Typo and just say owned or they accept it as a new term and say one of two things. Puh-owned or Poon-ed (think spoon - the s + the ed)
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Postby Calbeck on Thu Nov 30, 2006 9:37 pm

TMLutas wrote:I'm going to have to disagree with you on what socialism is. It's not "we're all going to take care of each other" as that feature is found in christianity and other systems as well.


I should point out that many people have called Christianty "socialist" or even "Communist" on basis of many of its tenets regarding what one should do with one's own wealth. Christ put forward what would work in a perfect world --- the notion that EVERYONE would willingly sacrifice that part of their wealth which did not provide for their needs, in order to support those who could not provide for themselves. Long before Marx, it was Jesus who essentially said "from those according to their abilities, to those according to their needs". And that would include assistance along the lines of teaching a man to fish, as well as giving him one in the interim to tide him over while he learns.

The difference is that Christ meant for us to do this as individuals, helping individuals, not as something that required a government agency and a slew of laws to enact and enforce. We are supposed to give out of the kindness of our hearts, not because we fear punishment for refusing to do so. Kindness cannot be "delegated".

Using the state to mandate compassion and social solidarity is such a nice crutch that I believe that there is no level at which there is not a constant temptation for *MORE*, to a level which it constitutes a hazard.


And there we are in total agreement.
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Postby TMLutas on Fri Dec 01, 2006 7:13 am

Calbeck wrote:
TMLutas wrote:I'm going to have to disagree with you on what socialism is. It's not "we're all going to take care of each other" as that feature is found in christianity and other systems as well.


I should point out that many people have called Christianty "socialist" or even "Communist" on basis of many of its tenets regarding what one should do with one's own wealth. Christ put forward what would work in a perfect world --- the notion that EVERYONE would willingly sacrifice that part of their wealth which did not provide for their needs, in order to support those who could not provide for themselves. Long before Marx, it was Jesus who essentially said "from those according to their abilities, to those according to their needs". And that would include assistance along the lines of teaching a man to fish, as well as giving him one in the interim to tide him over while he learns.


It's an amazing mark of the propaganda power of socialism/communism that the christian system, preceding the invention of both socialism and communism by well over a millenia, is labeled as an imitator instead of socialism/communism being called "atheistic christianity", a term that would be quite appropriate and whose results would be quite educational as an object lesson of what happens when you remove God from any system, no matter how laudable.
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Postby Deckard Canine on Fri Dec 01, 2006 8:26 am

C.S. Lewis pointed out that Christianity and Communism share the belief that the poor are blessed but should be helped out of poverty. (Okay, Communists wouldn't say "blessed," but similar idea.)

Also, if M. Butterfly is accurate on this point, the average Chinese Communist does not approve of homosexuality any more than the average Christian does, proving that you don't need to be religious to think there's something wrong with it.
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Postby RHJunior on Fri Dec 01, 2006 9:37 am

However, that's misleading.

Most everyone thinks the poor should be helped. What is radically different about each is HOW they think the poor should be helped.

The method recommended by Christianity and that recommended by Communism could not be more radically different.

The Christian believes in <I>voluntary charity.</i> That aid given to a needy person has to be given of free will. Furthermore, and this is the point that equivocators turn deaf, Christianity also harshly condemns the sluggard, and says "he that will not work, let him not eat." (In those very words.) It also advocates private property and condemns taking from others by coercion ("thou shalt not steal.") And that the laborer should be paid the amount that he agreed to. And though it warns against the love of wealth and fame, it also praises the profit motive (the parable of the talents) and diligence.... for it is good stewardship with what God chooses to bless you.

Communism advocates taking from the productive, and giving to the nonproductive. It routinely punishes ambition, prosperity and the profit motive. And <I>by inescapable consequence of its axioms</i> it relies on brute force and a monopoly of power to accomplish its "redistribution"--- its THEFT AND PLUNDER of the populace.

There are those who say "if men were angels, any governing system would work." But I state that even among angels, communism would be unacceptable. A communist angel would be constantly aware he was nevertheless receiving in disproportion to his productivity. He would be painfully aware that he was participating in the plunder of those more productive than himself.... a morally unacceptable scenario.

Among angels, a capitalism of philanthropy instead must exist.... where two exchange wealth, each seeks to barter away slightly more than he receives.... each bartering down or up to an equitable agreement where blessing is mutual.

Self interest is not a sin. Theft is.
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Postby TMLutas on Fri Dec 01, 2006 4:53 pm

RHJunior wrote:Communism advocates taking from the productive, and giving to the nonproductive. It routinely punishes ambition, prosperity and the profit motive. And <I>by inescapable consequence of its axioms</i> it relies on brute force and a monopoly of power to accomplish its "redistribution"--- its THEFT AND PLUNDER of the populace.

There are those who say "if men were angels, any governing system would work." But I state that even among angels, communism would be unacceptable. A communist angel would be constantly aware he was nevertheless receiving in disproportion to his productivity. He would be painfully aware that he was participating in the plunder of those more productive than himself.... a morally unacceptable scenario.

Among angels, a capitalism of philanthropy instead must exist.... where two exchange wealth, each seeks to barter away slightly more than he receives.... each bartering down or up to an equitable agreement where blessing is mutual.

Self interest is not a sin. Theft is.

If men were angels, they would give voluntarily and none of the coercive apparat of socialism/communism would exist. It would simply be unnecessary. Monastic communities often run on rules that would break down in "normal" society because the community is collectively closer to angelic norms than you usually find in the outside world.
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Postby Deckard Canine on Sat Dec 02, 2006 8:20 am

"If men were angels, no Government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on Government would be necessary." -- James Madison at the Constitutional Convention
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