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Airbags

Bless the Chicago Reporter. I've never been to the Reporter's offices, but I like to imagine that they shout Microsoft Excel formulae at each other through stacks of Freedom of Information Act requests, producing the data that makes my job so much more pleasant. Most recently, they evaluated the Chicagoland area's traffic congestion problem, illustrating that despite the constant highway construction, that has cost so many people so many thousands of dollars in direct costs (not to mention tax dollars), people are spending more time in traffic now than they did 20 years ago.

I once read an editorial, I believe by Irving Kristol, about how one day, stuck in Washington, D.C. traffic, the author had a civic epiphany about how even despite the terrible commute times, Americans would always still prefer to while away their hours in the car, because it represents our rugged individualism and desire to be free from the fetters of socialized transportation. The car, even when it wasn't moving, was a symbol of American democracy and the American ideal of the individual's liberation from the tyranny of social relations, where a bright brilliant light, perhaps like Kristol himself, or maybe John Galt, isn't made filthy by the common mud people who can only succeed by relying on one another.

Like with everything the radical right argues, this is exactly backwards. If the early part of the 20th century was an ongoing effort by the left to bust the private trusts that kept so many people in misery, the last part of the 20th century was an ongoing effort by the right to bust the public trusts that kept so many people financially and physically safe. And one of those was the public trust of commonly-owned transit that allowed supreme freedom of movement. And has the conservative assault on publicly owned transit made Americans more free?

It has made us dependent on automobile manufacturers, oil companies and insurers. It has created a massive public-private complex that compulsively fleeces taxpayers to build roads. It has made it easier for the government and private entities to track our movements.

Cars must be registered to the state; if we don't want a transponder in our car that keeps a record of where we've traveled, we have to pay double the toll as a tax; cameras at intersections snap our pictures. Cops driving behind us can just run our plates and get our histories. While you can drive wherever you want, you cannot do so with freedom, and you can only really do so if you can afford it — the core conservative principle of freedom for those who can afford it. There is a tiered system of movement here — the wealthy can afford to move at their leisure (though still ultimately trackable) while the working people are confined to wherever a few "leisure" gallons of gas per week can take them.

Compare that with travel by rail, where a ticket can be purchased with cash. You can hop on and off wherever you choose, without presenting identification; you can go from one end of the country to the other in complete anonymity. There is nobody to track or follow you; if there is a problem with the train, it is somebody else's problem. Once you step off the train, you don't need to worry about where it will park, whether it will be broken into, or stolen. You don't have to insure it.

The conservative and libertarian narrative is of course the opposite of the truth: the assault on public transportation has made movement more difficult, more expensive and less free. But the purpose of busting public trusts was never to make things easier, cheaper and more democratic, but to make a small group of people much more wealthy. And that is exactly what has happened. The car makers, the road builders, the petrochemical producers, the insurance companies have all made enormous fortunes as the options for public travel are slowly eliminated and a car has become a necessity for moving around.

In the former Soviet Union, you couldn't move from city to city, province to province, without government approval of an interior visa. How the Kristols of the world hated the Soviet Union! How dare the state limit individuals' movement!? The individual was what it was all about, the magic individual who without an atom of social relations can skyrocket to the heights of success — in fact, carry the entire world on his shoulders. And here was a state, limiting how a person could move. Much better, I guess, to place limitations on how people can move through incremental steps, dissolving the hard-fought-for public trust that ensured equal access to movement, and for the benefit of private profit. Don't misquote me: I'm not saying it was easier to move around the Soviet Union than it is to move around the US. My point is merely that to the person — the average person — who cares if it is private industry or the state that makes it impossible for you to move around? The solution here is to "make more money" — but the solution would have been similar in the USSR, substitute "money" for "friends." Maneuvering up the corporate hierarchy and maneuvering up the massive bureaucracy are hardly fair solutions to a pretty basic problem.

Conservatives wasted no time in going after Amtrak in the 1970s right at its inception. It was one of the earliest targets of so-called "movement conservatism" and the Reagan public trust busters gleefully halved its budget. The White Flight happening simultaneously made sure that the lion's share of public money went to building highways rather than strengthening public transportation. Cars consume huge amounts of public resources — state, local and federal agencies are constantly subsidizing expansions, paying cops to police the roads (Amtrak pays for its own security), and generally sustaining losses in revenue due to the inefficiency of traveling everywhere by car.

But it is easy to make private profits off of course, when we atomize transportation. So we'll keep the leisure class at the public teat, milking us for every last penny before we finally shake them off.

Air quality in the suburbs, where congestion on surface streets is worse because cars have to move slower, is seriously declining. The roads are more and more full. At a time when the average working American is forced to be more and more productive, we are losing an ever increasing amount of our precious personal time in getting to and from our employers.

According to the Metropolitan Planning Council, congestion on our highways costs employers and individuals $7.3 billionbillion — a year. Money wasted. Money thrown away. But why? What is more "privatized" than travel by car? Nothing! So why isn't it "peak efficiency?" Because, of course, privatization as a magical key to "efficiency" is a fairy tale.

That our city is even considering an Olympics here when problems like this are affecting working people is not unconscionable, it is criminal. Well, sort of — inasmuch as cowardice can be criminal. The American political class has been brought completely to heel by a Free Market Fundamentalism where up is down, and congestion is freedom.

Carve up the highways. Replace them with rail. Dedicate city streets to buses; incentivize community car liveries. Cars don't make us free. They tie us down; they make us trackable units in an atomized society where the most favored have the most freedom, and working people — the mud people who so get in the way of your average libertarian — spend more to move less.

GB store

Comments

joe / August 13, 2008 1:14 PM

Amtrak does require ID.

http://www.amtrak.com/servlet/ContentServer?pagename=Amtrak/am2Copy/Title_Image_Copy_Page&c=am2Copy&cid=1080080554204&ssid=342

Brian / August 13, 2008 1:55 PM

Wow. Where to begin?

Wrong on highway construction:
The last new expressway opened 20 years ago. Construction work today is overwhelmingly repair, not expansion. Congestion increases because NIMBY, environmental concerns, property issues, and tax resistance make building new highways hard. Toll only routes are bashed for their elitism.

Wrong on the motivation for car usage: It isn't the "conservative assault" although that is an awesome piece of agitprop.

People want cars.

Kristol is wrong that it is just American. Car usage is skyrocketing all over the world: Britain, India, Brazil, China, you name it, under leftist governments, under rightest governments, with state support and without state support. As soon as they can afford them, people buy cars.

All of this to the chagrin of urban planners, who got into the planning business so they could tell people what to do and how to live, not to respond to those people's decisions.

Really, what is the point of writing a column when the author is so wrong about so many basic facts?

Jacob Kaplan / August 13, 2008 3:36 PM

Really? The last new expressway opened 20 years ago? What about the I-355 extension that just opened and is about to add even more sprawl to Will County?

What about the fact that another lane is being added to the Tri-State in Lake County, instead of public transit expansion in an area where many people in Chicagoland now work?

Do these examples not count as new construction and expansion?

Carl Giometti / August 13, 2008 11:35 PM

Right on Ramsin!

Brian, I can attest to 95% of what Ramsin says as being accurate to anyone with even a passing knowledge of urban planning or traffic generation. Congestion increases because expressways facilitate further expansion which inspires more driving. The wider the expressway the more spreading is encouraged. If you wanted to eliminate all regular congestion all you would have to do is eliminate all the expressways and wait 5 years.

Consider this, the expressway is a transportation system that decreases in effectiveness the more it is used. A public transit system's effectiveness is almost independent of how many people use it. The train runs at the same time whether our not you ride it.

Rich / August 14, 2008 12:14 AM

@ Carl: "The train runs at the same time whether our not you ride it."

Hmmm...I don't know if I am splitting hairs here, but this is what I heard every single day the Taste of Chicago was going on, "your train is running 18 minutes behind due to heavy passenger load".

There was a significant increase in the number of people riding the train...that created delays...and delays happened every single day.

As someone who rides public transportation everyday, your statement seems palpable in theory, but inaccurate in reality.

mike z / August 14, 2008 1:21 PM

Public transportation revitalizes neighborhoods, spurs development, assists in creating communities.

--

Downtowns Across the U.S. See Streetcars as their Future.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/14/us/14streetcar.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&oref=slogin&adxnnlx=1218737719-yVL6M6H9FfzTjQpVERA5Rw

Rich / August 14, 2008 1:30 PM

Whoops...I meant to say "your statement seems palatable in theory".

By the way, good article, Ramsin.

Carl Giometti / August 14, 2008 5:27 PM

Rich, you are, of course, correct. There is a point where capacity becomes an issue in transit. However, if you were to compare that 18 minute delay to the delay that would be caused by those people driving, I'd guess it would be at least double that. Any transportation system will buckle under the pressure of huge events but, day to day performance of transit kicks the auto's butt.

Jason / August 14, 2008 8:57 PM

Yep, that is why Henry Ford utilized the assembly line to bring that pesky elitist vehicle to the working man.

Ramsin, I think you have effectively run out of ideas on how socialism is the answer.

This is kindergarten logic.

Rich / August 14, 2008 9:36 PM

Hi Carl,

The "18 minute" number was more symbolic than exact. Sometimes it was over 30 minutes in delay. On a day to day basis, the train does beat the car. no doubt.

Although, I am confused.

"A public transit system's effectiveness is almost independent of how many people use it"

"The train runs at the same time whether our not you ride it."

Then you follow that up with:

"Any transportation system will buckle under the pressure of huge events".

Which is it?

Ramsin / August 15, 2008 9:49 AM

Right, Jason, wanting investment in infrastructure like public transportation is "socialism" but huge government subsidies to make automobiles feasible--the hundreds of billions we spend maintaining and expanding highways, policing them, subsidizing ethanol, regulating emissions, tax credits to domestic auto producers, etc. etc. is free enterprise.

Do you really think that Henry Ford developed the assembly line because he ad a populist vision of the automobile? Or may profits have had something to do with it?

Don't you free market fundamentalists get tired of just shrieking "socialism!" at anybody who questions some private enterprise?

Especially in a case where the cost to the public (what you'd call "the State" to make it sound ominous) is much higher as a subsidy to private business than it would be if the public spent the money on itself.

The thing economic snake-handlers like yourself hate the most is when the public choose to pool their money and spend it on themselves, rather than just hand it over to private pockets.

I think Carl's point still stands, Rich, which is during any very high-traffic event (like the Taste) you will have considerable delays, but those delays would always be worse if people were traveling not in common (ie on buses and trains) but individually (in cars).

Major events will cause delays on any transportation system, that is self-evident; but some transportation systems would be better equipped than others. All those people trying to drive out of downtown after the taste? Forget about it.

Jason / August 15, 2008 12:26 PM

You are such a farce. A pathetic shill, if you will...

Keep trotting out more pseudo intellectualism. If you can't sell your idealogy one way, just repackage it.

C-Note / August 17, 2008 8:08 PM

Ramsin - if you ride public transportation you must know why people choose to drive cars, despite the expense. You and the socialists will not take away my cars. Won't happen. I'm just saying.

Ramsin / August 18, 2008 12:10 PM

I do ride public transportation. It is frustrating. All the more reason to invest more in it. And the "socialist" thing is really tired. You and intellectual heavyweights like Jason up there have no arguments, so you just resort to ad hominem. I'm not a socialist. People deciding to spend money on themselves instead of subsidizing private industry is not "socialism".

Coerced taxes being funneled into private industry? That sounds more like statism to me. Chad, who knew, you're a socialist?

C-Note / August 18, 2008 1:11 PM

No, not a statist or a socialist; just don't have much choice about paying taxes. Like everyone else.

Sometimes people like Jason and I don't have any arguments because it's hard to understand exactly what yours is. I can't see much of a point in dissecting these false dichotomies between, say, the "leisure class" and the "working people," or the "mud people" and "libertarians." I mean, I happen to be a working person, a libertarian, and a mud person. Or some people might say I'm wealthy, but I also work. These categories ostensibly put me on both sides of an imaginary fence. I don't pretend to understand all this -- I'm just a guy who's working to get ahead, who thinks that the interstate highway system is the primary triumph of our federal government.

You say that cars, while they're supposed to make us free, make us trackable. But isn't it possible, once all of us have Chicago Cards that register where we enter the train and where we exit, that we'll be just as trackable. And don't forget that carrying a cell phone or using a computer makes you trackable as well. So who cares if the cops can track my car if I have a cell phone?

Although I don't necessarily think more public transportation is a bad idea, I do like driving, and I think you need to resolve the problems I mention above before anyone will want to take your argument seriously.

C-Note / August 18, 2008 1:22 PM

About Henry Ford: I think you could probably find a person with more of a commitment to profitability. From what I hear, he paid extremely high wages, engaged in profit-sharing with employees, and was dedicated to lowering the price of his cars so that anyone could purchase one. There was an early court case in which some of his stockholders had to sue him to declare a dividend instead of re-investing the company's profits in the company. He seems to have been more interested in productivity than profit. He also seems to have been a sort of socialist capitalist. I'm not glorifying him; I'm just pointing this out.

Rich / August 18, 2008 2:20 PM

Since when is calling someone a Socialist a personal attack? (see ad hominem comment above).

It's funny, I've read Ramsin's articles for awhile now. He has been called a Socialist for over 5 years.

Rammie, baby...either you are not getting your thoughts across on paper or you have a way of putting things that make people see your Commie-Red stripe.

You can argue that you are, or are not a Socialist. But pointing out that you are being somehow "attacked" b/c you are called a "Socialist" is a bit tiresome as well. It's been over 5 years and this is still going on, man.

And please get off of your self-righteous soap box. I've read you mock, attack and name call just as much as you claim it is done to you. Can you say “hypocrite”?

Thanks for the explanation of Carl's point. It is circular logic and paper thin, but thanks anyway.

Oh! Wait! Did I attack you with those comments?

Quick! Call the ad hominem police!!!

Ramsin / August 18, 2008 3:00 PM

"Rammie baby"? Are you serious?

It is an ad hominem by definition, because it is meant to degrade the argument without discussing the argument, but rather the arguer. They are not saying that public transportation investment is "socialist" (because that would make them seem ridiculous) but rather that I shouldn't be listened to, because my intentions are in someway socialist, which they are not.

Did you ever stop to consider that the same group of people have been calling me a "socialist" for 5 years? That has more to do with them than with me.

There is nothing about suggesting a massive investment in publicly-owned transportation that is "socialist". So calling me a socialist for arguing for it ignored the argument and tries to highlight my nefarious "motives".

C-Note makes a better point (without resorting to a bizarre Sammy Davis Jr.-style nickname for me), and it deserves a response.

To address it, I would say that clearly, if you look at the history of transportation debates going back to the turn of the century (and maybe further, to JQ Adams) there has been a tension between the forces of right and left; freedom of movement was part of the civil rights debate, as well (movement figured pretty heavily in the civil rights debate from Dred Scott to Plessy v. Ferguson through the bus boycotts), for example.

The arguments against de-segregation were based on private property rights; the arguments against it issues of equality of access in a democracy. Those arguments were race-based; but you could easily make an analogy to class-based arguments.

In Chicago, there was a massive fight to "municipalize" (as they said at the time) transportation, and the fight was between right and left. On the right, private property (in this case, the el and surface lines, but more importantly the bond-holders who would be affected by a public buy-out) was emphasized; on the left, an argument about "two systems" of transport (one for those who could afford it and those who can't) was derided. Ultimately it took nearly 50 years to make public transportation actually public.

The right has assaulted public trusts; that is who I was referring to. The public trust of public transportation has been consistently undermined by libertarians and conservatives for as long as there have been public trusts for transportation. Can you actually argue that there is not a huge class of working people who would benefit from a public transportation system that would diminish reliance on a car? That is who is meant by "working people".

Cars are great; I love driving on an open road as much as anybody else. But the transportation regime in this country favors private interests over the public good, as reports on congestion and waste clearly show.

Do I think they need to abolish cars, or confiscate them? Of course not.

But it is time to end this favoritism of the car which is really favoritism of a private interest. That is not communism, socialism, or statism. It is democracy. Let the public spend its money on itself, not on subsidies for a private industry.

Ramsin / August 18, 2008 3:08 PM

Rich- Also, don't throw around phrases like "circular logic". Carl's argument was not circular in any way at all.

Carl said:

"A public transit system's effectiveness is almost independent of how many people use it"

"The train runs at the same time whether our not you ride it."

You then pointed out that he contradicted himself by saying:

"Any transportation system will buckle under the pressure of huge events".

But these can be reconciled by amending the original statements to add that above-capacity volumes will cause delays, but that those delays would be considerably shorter than delays caused by the same volumes moving in private vehicles.

What is circular there?

Rich / August 18, 2008 3:43 PM

Rammie...baby...if you have to "amend the original statement", do I really have to point out the paper thin logic you are trying to sell me? The whole damn point he was making was that trains run at the same time everyday. and THAT is the statement you want to "amend"?!?

C'mon, comrade. You are smarter than that.

For what it's worth, I'm not calling you a Socialist at all. I personally look forward to reading what you have to say.

But Ramstein, please, stop bitching about the "pseudo-ad hominem" attacks in one hand, and attacking people who post here in the other hand.

You can't have it both ways, Ramrod.

Cinnamon / August 18, 2008 4:30 PM

If public transit noticed a significant uptick in ridership that remained consistent, they would adjust the schedule and likely devote more routes to keep things running smoothly and on schedule. And if more people rode the buses instead of drove, the buses would be more likely to remain on schedule as well.

Ramsin looks better in blue than red.

C-Note / August 18, 2008 6:03 PM

Despite the devastating effects Cinnamon's incisive yet simplistic logic has had on the various counter-arguments, all the same, you're going to have to pry my car from my cold, dead hands, Ramsin.

Jason / August 19, 2008 10:08 AM

"But it is time to end this favoritism of the car which is really favoritism of a private interest. That is not communism, socialism, or statism. It is democracy. Let the public spend its money on itself, not on subsidies for a private industry."

This is the type of misguided logic that passes in your idea of democracy?!? To force people to abandon their preferred choice of transportation so that some collectivist/socialist (whatever you want to be called) overseer can dictate what is best for you.

What solution do you have for rural communities? Is a town of 500 people supposed to build light rail?

Is it in someone's best interest to spend 45 minutes traveling by train/bus, when they could accomplish their tasks in 15 minutes using a car. Have you ever considered that people look to maximize their utility and that doing so means that they weigh time versus opportunity costs of doing other activities?

Your idea of subsidies for private industry is absolute intellectual dishonesty. Our roads are used by government services to accomplish their public duty, the military to accomplish their public duty, and every person in the country relies on the roadways to transact business and procure goods and services. That would be "the public spending money on itself and in its best interest."

Maybe you should come to the conclusion that the majority of people in the US do not wish to give up their individual choice.

Time to end this favoritism of a private interest! Lenin probably couldn't have said it better himself.


Rich / August 19, 2008 11:55 AM

The eloquence, along with her way of putting things, makes me wish Cinnamon was writing “Revenge of the Second City”.

Maybe, “Revenge of the Second Good Meal”? :-)

Ramowski, what do you know about cooking? Maybe you could take over as recipe writer. Better yet, let’s have you write some obituaries until those writing skills get a little bit more fine tuned.

Lulu / August 19, 2008 11:57 PM

Why not put a congestion tax in place like they have in London. Charge people 15 bucks a day to drive their cars into the Loop, and then use the money collected to provide more public transportation?

Carl / August 20, 2008 12:00 AM

yeesh... I haven't checked back here in a few days. I didn't realize so many lawyers read Ramsin's blog!!

Okay, to revise my statements so they work within the rules of logic:

The automobile/roadway system is one that decreases in efficiency as the number of people using it increases. One more driver equals more energy expended, more roadway used, more delays incurred.

Public transit increases in efficiency the more people ride it. One more rider equals a negligible increase in energy used, a negligible increase in commuting time, and only takes up the space of one seat. So in other words, for the same amount of energy you are moving more people at almost an identical rate as though you were carrying fewer people.

However, every system does have a yield point.

An analogy would be to call cars a wood beam and transit a concrete beam. Wood will deflect with every additional ounce loaded on to it. A concrete beam will hardly deflect at all until the load reaches its yield point.

Regardless of the inherent efficiencies built into each system, the secondary benefits of transit (and walking) and the secondary detriments of automobiles demonstrates that transit absolutely whoops cars' ass.

Carl / August 20, 2008 12:03 AM

Oh and just to stick up for the socialists (although I prefer 2 parts capitalism, 1 part socialism).

Any libertarian or whatever who can craft a philosophy more just and elegant than "From each according to their abilities, to each according to their needs." let me know.

Didn't think so.

Jason / August 20, 2008 8:39 AM

That philosophy - so just and elegant - is credited with the deaths of over 30 million people in the 20th century.

You're real smart. Educated, too.

Carl / August 20, 2008 9:56 AM

Really, Jason are you sure about that? Are you sure it wasn't communism and not socialism? Hmmm...someone doesn't seem to know the difference between an economic system and a political system.

Jason / August 20, 2008 10:32 AM

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socialism

Socialism is both an economic and political system. Without political force, socialism has never been voluntarily enacted.

Your defense, based on semantics, only highlights the naivete of your statement.

Carl / August 20, 2008 12:47 PM

Well if wikipedia says it...

Rich / August 20, 2008 1:24 PM

Carl…no offense, but you are an idiot.

Yes, sign me up in the “ad hominem” club and calling you out.

First you make an INSANE comment, on your soap box, loud and clear.

When I call you out on it, you come out and say, “Oh wait, I meant this", or "I meant that”.

Bottom line, the train DOES NOT run at the same time regardless of the number of passengers. I know because I ride the train, jackass!

Your first comment was one line, bam! That’s it.

Your second comment was 2 paragraphs long. Pretty weak.

Second, so do you disagree with the Wikipedia definition?

I think you are stuck in the late 1990’s/early 2000's when Wikipedia got its bad name.

I think now when you look up posts, there are also sources cited on the page.

I looked up the link, and if you read it through, you will find the sources for what is posted:

Notes
1. ^ "Socialism" Merriam-Webster. Merriam Webster Online.
2. ^ "Socialism" Encyclopædia Britannica. 2006. Encyclopædia Britannica Online.
3. ^ Marx, Karl, Communist Manifesto, Penguin (2002)
4. ^ "Market socialism," Dictionary of the Social Sciences. Craig Calhoun, ed. Oxford University Press 2002; and "Market socialism" The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Politics. Ed. Iain McLean and Alistair McMillan. Oxford University Press, 2003. See also Joseph Stiglitz, "Whither Socialism?" Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1995 for a recent analysis of the market socialism model of mid–20th century economists Oskar R. Lange, Abba P. Lerner, and Fred M. Taylor.
5. ^ Encyclopedia Britannica, entry on Socialism
6. ^ The Cambridge History of Iran Volume 3, The Seleucid, Parthian and Sasanian Period, edited by Ehsan Yarshater, Parts 1 and 2, p1019, Cambridge University Press (1983)
7. ^ Morris, William, Dream of John Ball: A King's Lesson Project Gutenberg, accessed 11 July 2007
8. ^ 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica "Gentleman" here means man of property, i.e. one who can earn a living from the income gained by the ownership of land or capital, in terms of rent or dividend, etc.← as distinct from the biblical condition of Eve and Adam, who toiled but had no landlord to whom to pay rent or other dues.
9. ^ Rousseau, Jean-Jacques, Social Contract, p2, Penguin, (1968)
10. ^ Leroux called socialism “the doctrine which would not give up any of the principles of Liberty, Equality, Fraternity” of the French Revolution of 1789. "Individualism and socialism" (1834)
11. ^ Oxford English Dictionary, etymology of socialism
12. ^ Russell, Bertrand (1972). A History of Western Philosophy. Touchstone. p. 781
13. ^ Williams, Raymond (1976). Keywords: a vocabulary of culture and society. Fontana. 0006334792.
14. ^ Engels, Frederick, Preface to the 1888 English Edition of the Communist Manifesto, p202. Penguin (2002)
15. ^ MIA: Encyclopedia of Marxism: Glossary of Organisations, First International (International Workingmen’s Association), accessed 5 July 2007
16. ^ The Second (Socialist) International 1889–1923 accessed 12 July 2007
17. ^ Engels, 1895 Introduction to Marx's Class Struggles in France 1848–1850
18. ^ cf Footnote 449 in Marx Engels Collected Works on Engels' 1895 Introduction to Marx's Class Struggles in France 1848–1850
19. ^ In England, "Insurrection would be madness where peaceful agitation would more swiftly and surely do the work... But, mark me, as soon as it finds itself outvoted on what it considers vital questions, we shall see here a new slaveowners's war." Interview with Karl Marx, Head of L'Internationale, by R. Landor New York World, July 18, 1871.
20. ^ Fischer, Ernst, Marx in his own words, p135, quoting from Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte
21. ^ Lenin, Meeting of the Petrograd Soviet of workers and soldiers' deputies October 25, 1917, Collected works, Vol 26, p239. Lawrence and Wishart, (1964)
22. ^ Lenin, Collected Works, Vol 26, pp. 264–5. Lawrence and Wishart (1964)
23. ^ Caplan, Brian. "Lenin and the First Communist Revolutions, IV" (HTML). George Mason University. Retrieved on 2008-02-14.
24. ^ Payne, Robert; "The Life and Death of Lenin", Grafton: paperback pp. 425–440
25. ^ Bertil, Hessel, Introduction, Theses, Resolutions and Manifestos of the first four congresses of the Third International, pxiii, Ink Links (1980)
26. ^ "We have always proclaimed and repeated this elementary truth of marxism, that the victory of socialism requires the joint efforts of workers in a number of advanced countries." Lenin, Sochineniya (Works), 5th ed Vol XLIV p418, February 1922. (Quoted by Mosche Lewin in Lenin's Last Struggle, p4. Pluto (1975))
27. ^ [http://www.soviethistory.org/index.php?action=L2&SubjectID=1924nepmen&Year=1924 Soviet history: NEPmen
28. ^ Serge, Victor, From Lenin to Stalin, p55.
29. ^ Serge, Victor, From Lenin to Stalin, p52.
30. ^ Brinton, Maurice (1975). "The Bolsheviks and Workers' Control 1917–1921 : The State and Counter-revolution" (HTML). Solidarity. Retrieved on 2007-01-22.
31. ^ Bevan, Aneurin, In Place of Fear, p 63, p91
32. ^ Bevan, Aneurin, In Place of Fear, p63
33. ^ a b The Frankfurt Declaration
34. ^ cf Beckett, Francis, Clem Attlee, Politico, 2007, p243. "Idleness" meant unemployment, and hence the starvation of the worker and his/her family. It was not then a pejorative term. Unemployment benefit, as well as national insurance and hence state pensions, were introduced by the 1945 Labour government.
35. ^ Crosland, Anthony, The Future of Socialism, p52
36. ^ Bevan, Aneurin, In Place of Fear p50, pp. 126–128, p21 MacGibbon and Kee, second edition (1961)
37. ^ British Petroleum, privatised in 1987, was officially nationalised in 1951 according to government archives [1] with further government intervention during the 1974–79 Labour Government, cf 'The New Commanding Height: Labour Party Policy on North Sea Oil and Gas, 1964–74' in Contemporary British History, Volume 16, Issue 1 Spring 2002 , pages 89–118. Some elements of some of these entities were already in public hands. Later Labour renationalised steel (1967, British Steel) after it was denationalised by the Conservatives, and nationalised car production (1976, British Leyland), [2]. In 1977, major aircraft companies and shipbuilding were nationalised
38. ^ The nationalization of public utilities included the CDF - Charbonnages de France; EDF - Électricité de France; GDF - Gaz de France, airlines (Air France), banks (Banque de France) and many other private companies like the Renault car factory (Régie Nationale des Usines Renault) [3].
39. ^ Beckett, Francis, Clem Attlee, p247. Politico's (2007)
40. ^ Crosland, Anthony, The Future of Socialism, p9, p89. Constable (2006)
41. ^ a b Beckett, Francis, Clem Attlee, Politico, 2007, p243
42. ^ Crosland, Anthony, The Future of Socialism p46. Constable (2006)
43. ^ Socialist International - Progressive Politics For A Fairer World
44. ^ R Goodin and P Pettit (eds), A to contemporary political philosophy
45. ^ [http://www.labour.org.uk/labour_policies Labour Party Clause Four
46. ^ Many Venezuelans Uncertain About Chavez' '21st century Socialism' , Voice of America, Washington 9 July 2007. Accessed 12 July 2007
47. ^ Communist Party of Nepal'
48. ^ Christofias wins Cyprus presidency'
49. ^ Germany’s Left Party woos the SPD'
50. ^ John Barkley Rosser and Marina V. Rosser, Comparative Economics in a Transforming World Economy (Cambridge, MA.: MIT Press, 2004).
51. ^ For instance, in the biography of the 1945 Labour Party Prime Minister Clem Attlee, Beckett states "the government... wanted what would become known as a mixed economy". Beckett, Francis, Clem Attlee, (2007) Politico's. Beckett also makes the point that "Everyone called the 1945 government 'socialist'."
52. ^ In the UK, British Aerospace was a combination of major aircraft companies British Aircraft Corporation, Hawker Siddeley and others. British Shipbuilders was a combination of the major shipbuilding companies including Cammell Laird, Govan Shipbuilders, Swan Hunter, and Yarrow Shipbuilders
53. ^ Socialist Party of Great Britain (1985). The Strike Weapon: Lessons of the Miners’ Strike (PDF) (in English). Retrieved on 2007-04-28.
54. ^ Hardcastle, Edgar (1947). "The Nationalisation of the Railways". Socialist Standard 43 (1). Socialist Party of Great Britain. Retrieved on 2007-04-28.
55. ^ Mattick, Paul. "Marx and Keynes: the limits of the mixed economy" (HTML) (in English). Retrieved on 2007-04-28.
56. ^ For more information on the cooperative economy, see Jaroslav Vanek, The Participatory Economy (Ithaca, NY.: Cornell University Press, 1971).
57. ^ For more information on participatory economics, see Michael Albert and Robin Hahnel, The Political Economy of Participatory Economics (Princeton, NJ.: Princeton University Press, 1991).
58. ^ Hayek, Friedrich (1994). The Road to Serfdom, 50th anniversary ed., University of Chicago Press. ISBN 0-226-32061-8.
59. ^ Hans-Hermann Hoppe. A Theory of Socialism and Capitalism. Kluwer Academic Publishers. page 46 in PDF.
60. ^ Alan O. Ebenstein. Friedrich Hayek: A Biography. (2003). University of Chicago Press. ISBN 0226181502 p.137
[edit] References and further reading
• Guy Ankerl, Beyond Monopoly Capitalism and Monopoly Socialism, Cambridge MA: Schenkman, 1978.
• Beckett, Francis, Clem Attlee, Politico's (2007) 978-1842751923
• G.D.H. Cole, History of Socialist Thought, in 7 volumes, Macmillan and St. Martin's Press, 1965; Palgrave Macmillan, 2003 reprint; 7 volumes, hardcover, 3160 pages, ISBN 1-4039-0264-X.
• Friedrich Engels, Socialism: Utopian and Scientific, Pathfinder; 2r.e. edition (December 1989) 978-0873485791
• Friedrich Engels, The Origin of the Family, Private Property and the State, Zurich, 1884. LCC HQ504 .E6
• Albert Fried and Ronald Sanders, eds., Socialist Thought: A Documentary History, Garden City, NY: Doubleday Anchor, 1964. LCCN 64-11312.
• Phil Gasper, The Communist Manifesto: A Road Map to History's Most Important Political Document, Haymarket Books, paperback, 224 pages, 2005. ISBN 1-931859-25-6.
• Élie Halévy, Histoire du Socialisme Européen. Paris, Gallimard, 1948.
• Michael Harrington, Socialism, New York: Bantam, 1972. LCCN 76-154260.
• Jesús Huerta de Soto, Socialismo, cálculo económico y función empresarial (Socialism, Economic Calculation, and Entrepreneurship), Unión Editorial, 1992. ISBN 84-7209-420-0.
• Makoto Itoh, Political Economy of Socialism. London: Macmillan, 1995. ISBN 0333553373.
• Kitching, Gavin (1983). Rethinking Socialism. Meuthen. ISBN 0416358403.
• Oskar Lange, On the Economic Theory of Socialism, Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press, 1938. LCCN 38-12882.
• Michael Lebowitz, Build It Now: Socialism for the 21st Century, Monthly Review Press, 2006. ISBN 1-58367-145-5.
• Marx, Engels, The Communist Manifesto, Penguin Classics (2002) 978-0140447576
• Marx, Engels, Selected works in one volume, Lawrence and Wishart (1968) 978-0853151814
• Ludwig von Mises, Socialism: An Economic and Sociological Analysis [4], Liberty Fund, 1922. ISBN 0-913966-63-0.
• Joshua Muravchik, Heaven on Earth: The Rise and Fall of Socialism, San Francisco: Encounter Books, 2002. ISBN 1-893554-45-7.
• Michael Newman, Socialism: A Very Short Introduction, Oxford University Press, 2005. ISBN 0-19-280431-6.
• Bertell Ollman, ed., Market Socialism: The Debate among Socialists, Routledge, 1998. ISBN 0-415-91967-3.
• Leo Panitch, Renewing Socialism: Democracy, Strategy, and Imagination. ISBN 0-8133-9821-5.
• Emile Perreau-Saussine, What remains of socialism ?, in Patrick Riordan (dir.), Values in Public life: aspects of common goods (Berlin, LIT Verlag, 2007), pp. 11–34
• Richard Pipes, Property and Freedom, Vintage, 2000. ISBN 0-375-70447-7.
• John Barkley Rosser and Marina V. Rosser, Comparative Economics in a Transforming World Economy. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2004. ISBN 9780262182348.
• Maximilien Rubel and John Crump, Non-Market Socialism in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries. ISBN 0-312-00524-5.
• David Selbourne, Against Socialist Illusion, London, 1985. ISBN 0-333-37095-3.
• James Weinstein, Long Detour: The History and Future of the American Left, Westview Press, 2003, hardcover, 272 pages. ISBN 0-8133-4104-3.
• Peter Wilberg, Deep Socialism: A New Manifesto of Marxist Ethics and Economics, 2003. ISBN 1-904519-02-4.
• Edmund Wilson, To the Finland Station: A Study in the Writing and Acting of History, Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1940. LCCN 4-34338.
[edit] External links
Resources on socialism
• In Defense of Marxism
• The Marxists Internet Archive (online library of Marxist writers)
• Reason in Revolt: Marxism and Modern Science By Alan Woods and Ted Grant
• Science, Marxism & the Big Bang: A Critical Review of Reason in Revolt by Peter Mason
• Marxist.net - a resource on socialist writers
• History of socialism at Spartacus Educational
• Modern History Sourcebook on socialism
• Socialist history at What Next?
• PBS' "Heaven on Earth: the Rise and Fall of Socialism"
• Towards a New Socialism by W. Paul Cockshott and Allin Cottrell
• "New Ideas of Socialism" by Luke Martell
• Katherine Verdery: Anthropology of Socialist Societies
Introductory articles
• "Why Socialism?" by Albert Einstein
• "Socialism: Utopian and Scientific" by Friedrich Engels
• "The Soul of Man under Socialism" by Oscar Wilde
• "Socialism and Liberty" by George Bernard Shaw
• "The Two Souls of Socialsm" by Hal Draper
• "Approaching Socialism" by Harry Magdoff and Fred Magdoff
• Socialism website
• The Counterhegemonic Blogspot Socialism in Action
Critical appraisals
• "Socialism", by Robert Heilbroner
• "Socialism" Economic Policy 2nd Lecture, by Ludwig von Mises
• "The Intellectuals and Socialism", by Friedrich A. Hayek
• "A Theory of Socialism and Capitalism", by Hans-Hermann Hoppe
• Lecture XXXV "A Philosophy of Life" includes a critique of marxist socialism by Sigmund Freud
• "State socialism and anarchism" by Benjamin Tucker
• "Towards a New Socialism?" Review Essay by Len Brewster
• Socialism/Antisocialism A survey and a critical appraisal

I don't think it was just wikipedia who "says it...".

Carl / August 20, 2008 1:50 PM

Here are the CTA's performance metrics for the first quarter 2008:

http://www.transitchicago.com/news/motion/board/120794pm20081q.pdf
You'll notice that ridership increased from january to march yet rail delays decreased.

Rich / August 20, 2008 2:18 PM

Okay, you are MORE of an idiot than originally stated, Carl.

You bag on someone using Wikipedia as a source...yet now you give a "3 month" CTA report?!?

Gimme break.

Y'know, passenger loads were up yesterday, and the train ran early! So the train must NEVER be late!

Get your rose colored glasses off.

I must just be imagining that message over the loud speaker, "your train is running late due to heavy passenger load".

Carl / August 20, 2008 4:04 PM

http://www.transitchicago.com/news/whatsnew2.wu?action=displaynewspostingdetail&articleid=122046

Performance metrics from 2004 to present. Except in instances where track construction caused delays, transit ridership has slowly climbed while on time performance has increased.

Rich / August 20, 2008 4:15 PM

Hmmmm...a report "FROM the CTA" talking about how "efficient" the CTA is...and they DON'T INCLUDE construction.

I don't know how long you have lived in Chicago, Carl...or if you even live in Chicago in the first place. The CTA is ALWAYS under construction...in some way, shape or form.

So I think when they use the word "instances", they really mean "everyday".

What do you have next, wonderboy?

Perhaps a report BY the Bush administration talking about what a "great job" the Bush administration is doing?

This coming from someone bagging on Wikipedia.

So who should I give this "link" to next time I hear "your train is running late due to heavy passenger load"?

Please advise.

Carl / August 20, 2008 4:50 PM

I don't know who else you want to report system ridership & performance records. The CTA's numbers are audited by someone, though, I couldn't find out who though.

I was looking at some other transit systems around the nation & world and for the most part ridership numbers have been increasing while delays have been decreasing. The one glaring exception I found was the MTA (New York) where ridership has exploded over the past 5 years and each year on time performance has decresed. Although, the regional rail system has held true (increasing ridership, decreasing delays.)

Other than that, BART, DART, MARTA, the Tube and the Metro all seem to be doing quite well. I don't know if a lot of their numbers are good though, because a few have had new lines open and one would expect ridership to increase with very little impact to on time performance. Also, several of those agencies didn't list specific data, that i could find at least, so I was going off of news releases or periodic reports on their sites.

Rich / August 20, 2008 4:52 PM

So who should I give this "link" to next time I hear "your train is running late due to heavy passenger load"?

Please advise.

Carl / August 20, 2008 10:22 PM

Rich, to be honest, I've been riding the red, green and orange line at least twice a day, five times a week for the past 3 years and I've never heard that announcement. The usual one we get is signal clearance or a "pedestrian incident" (i.e. someone jumped on the tracks) Which line is it on? Brown, maybe?

Rich / August 20, 2008 11:20 PM

Carl,

Well at least everything adds up.

You give me these B/S reports written by some "yes-man".

You have the nerve to stand by some crazy notion the the number of passengers do not create delays...without even knowing a "standard" delay announcement on a train line other than the "red, green and orange line at least twice a day, five times a week for the last 3 years".

A "standard" delay announcement I hear pretty consistent throughout the year.

And you sit there an ask "what line is that"?

Well, at least everything adds up now.

Fuckin'wow.

 

About the Author(s)

Ramsin Canon studies and works in politics in Chicago. If you have a tip, a borderline illegal leak, or a story that needs to be told, contact him at rc@gapersblock.com.

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