Canwest reports $1.4 billion loss

53 posts / 0 new
Last post
Doug
Canwest reports $1.4 billion loss

Couldn't have happened to better people.

CanWest Global Communications Corp, Canada's biggest media company, reported a ballooning second-quarter loss Thursday after taking a $1.19-billion writedown, and said the outlook for advertising revenue remains grim.

CanWest, which owns the Global TV network as well as a stable of daily newspapers across Canada, is struggling with a debt load of about $3.7-billion in the midst of a deep recession.

The company continues to negotiate with banks to restructure the debt amid speculation that it may have to file for bankruptcy protection.

In the immediate future, the company faces a $30.4-million (U.S.) interest payment on its 8 per cent senior subordinated notes. It has already missed the payment once and if it fails to make it by April 14, the note holders can demand payment of about $761-million (U.S.) of principal.

http://business.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090409.wcanwes...

remind remind's picture

So are they looking for more money from the government? As they were just given a whack load last month, or the month before.

And it couldn't happen to a nicer bunch! Hope they are gone from the face of Canada shortly.

munroe

The same people who lecture on the benefits of capitalism, the free market and right wing economics.  I hope (and imagine) they have been a major contributor to the Fraser Institute as well.

Golbez

1. Look for the Harper gov't to help CanWest out. You wouldn't want to lose the best right-wing propaganda piece, after all.

2. As noted above, CanWest is very much pro-capitalism. If they are such true capitalists, then CanWest ought to die a true capitalist death.

remind remind's picture

You know, I was just considering this statement "the outlook for advertising revenue remains grim." perhaps the repeated calls to send letters of boycott to sponsors/advertisers to Canwest Global, are indeed playing out? I know many who have sent such, including myself.

Harper has already helped them out, and people should be watching that they do not get two picks at the tax payer's pockets. Especially given their utter devotion to capitalism.

 

contrarianna

Golbez wrote:

....

2. As noted above, CanWest is very much pro-capitalism. If they are such true capitalists, then CanWest ought to die a true capitalist death.

Modern day corporatism is not an ideology, it is machinery for concentrating wealth.
To that end, draining the public purse is long held, government co-ordinated, standard operating procedure.
Only if one believes the generated mythology of "free enterprise" is there any sense of incongruity.
CanWest is not concerned about the small hit on the "optics" side--after all, who will be reporting very much on that--and how many will be outraged by the illogic of the nuanced message of bailout?

 

Tommy_Paine

 

Well, I'm sure unemployed journalists can go around the nations high school English classes to teach the ever illusive concept of irony to kids.  Save's wear and tear on Poe.

In the mean time, perhaps changing the terms "free trade" and "globalization" to a more accurate terminology like "customer elimination" would be in order.

 

contrarianna

The scam is this:
The Government, in the name of "free enterprise", has promoted the progressive deregulation of ownership limits on news and on media concentration, thereby allowing the expanding octopus of CanWest to happen contrary to public's need for diversity of sources.
Now, with CanWest in trouble, the government message is:
 "Gee, we can't let this huge number of local news and entertainment outlets to just die, what will the small communites do for "news" and entertainment? There are just too many that depend on CanWest to allow this to happen. Therefore, in the interest of the public we have to...."

Propaganda

Last year both the U.S. and Can. gov. invoked legislation called 'mark to market', where all companies had to re-evaluate their assets (what they owned) to current market prices. This legislation broke the housing bubble. As housing prices declined, so did company assets (those holding mortgages). Thus, causing the depression; decline and fall of the U.S., and consequently Canada.

CanWest write-downs are based on purchasing small-town newspaper business at say $30 million, but in today's market it is only worth $3 million. Banks that loaned CanWest money to buy these newspapers are upset, because the loan is now worth more than the newspaper business is worth, causing a tightening of the credit market - i.e. banks are now over-extended.

Understand, that this is just a paper transaction. CanWest profit for the quarter was $75 million. Harper will bend over backwards to save their a$$. Leonard Asper, the owner of CanWest is a very big contributor of the Conservatives and personally worth 100's of millions. Asper has already been favoured with the Human Rights Museum gift of $120 million, plus $22 million a year operating expenses, and a $170,000 executive salary.

But, corporate greed and free enterprise are not the problems. The problem is our governments that fail to enforce laws to protect their people; enforcing stupid laws such as mark-to-market; and interfering in free enterprise by bail-outs. The free market must remain free, without government interference, good or bad.

Just laws to protect the people should be enforced; such as no monopolies (anti-trust), usury (high interest rates and fees), commodities (no gambling on futures, mutual and hedge funds), favouring some companies over others (GM and Chrysler over Toyota in Canada), protecting our pension plans (allowing company use of pension funds as interest free loans, instead of paying their share into the plan), etc., etc.

Capitalism has given us the highest standard of living in the world. The system is workable. Businesses do not get to vote for a reason. We need to get back to basics.

 

 

thorin_bane

no capitalism has given us the pet rock, invisible dog, and lately sham-wow-tell them vince. Socialism is the only thing that has worked to allow the existance of a middle clas for capitalism to even survive. If we took away all socialism (the way capitalist describe) our society would fall on it's face. Bailouts aren't socialism, it saving capitalism from it's own self destructive purpose. The end goal of capitalism is selfishness, and greed. How can that e good for anyne let alone for everyone.

Billions and billions a year are spent on advertising to kids. Makreting makess up 15% of the cost of ALL products. Nevermind lowering taxes how about banning ads. Thiss doesn't even include the capitalist notion of subverting or drowning of good ideas that are benficial to all except the companies that oppose them. Why do cars only have 5 gears? They could have 15 and be more efficient in that alone. An auto transmition would work the same regardless of #of gears, nevermind electric vehicles that go all the way back to tesla. But yeah capitalism can work somehow Undecided

Propaganda

 

Yes, and socialism (first structured in the now defunct Soviet Union) gave their people only one kind of bread. Socialism stifles creativity; capitalism embraces new technologies.

 

 "Socialism is the only thing that has worked to allow the existance of a middle clas for capitalism to even survive. If we took away all socialism (the way capitalist describe) our society would fall on it's face."  

 

If the above describes socialized medicine and social safety nets such as welfare and employment insurance; they are necessary in today's democratic society.  However, none were available until the 1930's Great Depression. The middle class has existed since the early 1800's. All essential services should be socialized, including medical, electricity and water.

 

Pet rocks, invisible dogs and advertising targeting children are allowed by our government. Banning ads would be at the will of our government, based on the popular opinion of their people. The question is how many have complained?

 

Capitalist will protect their business. Sometimes new technologies, such as gas-saving carburetors patents have been bought up by the competition (oil companies). The question is who has petitioned the government to stop squashing new technologies, including 15 gears in a transmission?

 

Our provincial government has again interfered with capitalism by not allowing certain (slow) electric cars on our roads - showing favoritism for General Motors Volt. (Tesla, first manufactured in England and now located in California, has speed up to 200 kph.) Zenn electric cars maximum is 60 kph. Tesla dropped their prices from $100,000 to 50,000 (after a U.S. fed rebate). Zenn costs under $10,000 (no rebate) and is manufactured in our own province and in Quebec. This is blatant government interference at its best and will stifle more economic growth, because businesses cannot trust our provinces' unfair laws. And who will protest the lack of jobs and unfair practices toward Zenn? Especially when other provinces and the U.S. have allowed them?

 

Socialism, in the strict sense, will not work in a democratic country. It didn't work in the Soviet Union, or in China.

 

The best solution is still capitalism - with people and not corporations controlling the government.

 

Jacob Two-Two

The Soviet and Chinese systems were/are both fascist systems. It is fascism that doesn't work, not socialism. Eventually it always hits a wall, because the people are not participating in the society. They are playing their roles like cogs in a machine, under strict duress. The Chinese haven't hit this wall yet because they've been growing in leaps and bounds as they transform from an agrarian system into an industrial one. This transformation is still not complete, but when it is it will stagnate badly and not recover until more flexibility and democracy is introduced.

The problems you are ascribing to socialism have nothing to do with socialism at all. Yes, state-run economies (while very useful in certain circumstances like large crisises) are large, unweildy, and lacking in innovation, since they are controlled by small numbers of narrow-minded idealouges, but can't we say the same about many modern-day corporations? We need economies to be diverse but that does not imply that we need them to be exploitative as under the capitalist system. The economy I would promote would be a chaotic rabble of competing industries, but not capitalist industries. Instead we would have co-operatives, independent, democratically run, and worker-owned. We would have all of the flexibility of the capitalist ideal with none of the oppression and theft of other people's labour.

Socialism is in fact a much better fit for democracy, while capitalism is democracy's natural enemy. After all, corporations are fascist entities themselves. Nobody gets to vote for the CEO, or question their orders. How do fascist structures operate within a democratic nation without weakening it? Answer: they don't. Capitalism and democracy have co-existed in our societies for a long time, but always in clear opposition, an exact reflection of the tension between the rich and the poor, the privileged and the disenfranchised. I think there's no doubt which side has been winning for the past several decades. While democracy is a force towards equality, capitalism is a force against it, and as such, a force I will always fight against.

aka Mycroft

Propaganda wrote:

 

Yes, and socialism (first structured in the now defunct Soviet Union) gave their people only one kind of bread. Socialism stifles creativity; capitalism embraces new technologies.

How apt that your screen name is "propaganda" because that's certainly what you're spouting. If you believe captialism creates creativity just look at mass capitalist produced, bottom line driven culture. Also, look at all the new technologies that have been created not as a result not of the market but by R & D investment by the state - why? Because corporations often look for short term profit which works against investing money into research that might not produce anything of value. Look at all the technical innovations that occured during WWII due to state investment - everything from the computer to plastics to the splitting of the atom. And of course it was state investment that resulted in the harnessing of space. NASA was not a capitalist enterprise.

Quote:

The middle class has existed since the early 1800's.

But it only became a mass class after WWII when the west had to appease its populations with massive social transfers in order to head off the appeal of the Soviet Union.

Quote:

The best solution is still capitalism - with people and not corporations controlling the government.

 

That's somewhat axiomatic because as long as corporations control the economy they essentially control the government. What about having people, not corporations, control the economy and the government? Why, that's socialism!

aka Mycroft

For a planned economy to work you need democratic feedback and democratic control and for the structure to work from the bottom up. If you have an authoritarian system, particularly one based on fear, you're not going to get honest reporting from the shop floor or your local community about actual production and actual need.

Jacob Richter

From what I read in a recent newspaper article, some outside institutional investor said that Canwest's stock is now worthless.

Propaganda

 

aka Mycroft wrote: "Look at all the technical innovations that occured during WWII due to state investment - everything from the computer to plastics to the splitting of the atom. And of course it was state investment that resulted in the harnessing of space. NASA was not a capitalist enterprise."

 

Konrad Zuse from Germany produced the first automatic calculator - termed a computer. No government funding

Atanasoff-Berry Computer (ABC) was dubbed the first electronic computer (1939 to 1942); no government funding.

Aiken produced the Mark I in 1944 - IBM funded his research, not the government.

ENIAC (Electrical Numerical Integrator and Calculator 1946) was government sponsored during  WWII. It  was later discovered to have been a re-make of the ABC or Atanasoff-Berry Computer when a lawsuit over patent rights erupted between Sperry-Rand and Honeywell in 1973. The half million dollars spent by the U.S. government was to improve mathematical calculations specifically to enhance the hydrogen bomb. By the time the ENIAC was built, the war was over.

 

90% of plastics were invented by DuPont Corp. There are no references to any plastic inventions sponsored by government funding.

 

Other inventions which are not government sponsored:

Washing machines and dryers, asphalt, roofing shingles, dishwashers, digital cameras, personal computers (first produced by Toronto inventor Mers Kutt who created the MCM-70 in 1973), printers, camcorders, pressed wood, gypsum wallboard, etc, etc, etc.

 

aka Mycroft also wrote: "How apt that your screen name is "propaganda" because that's certainly what you're spouting.

 

A personal attack often denotes an attacker who has weak arguments.

Propaganda

 

aka Mycroft answered:

"But it only became a mass class after WWII when the west had to appease its populations with massive social transfers in order to head off the appeal of the Soviet Union."

 

In 1937 the Rowell-Sirois Commission on Dominion-Provincial Relations was the first effort to gain social insurance in Canada. This was followed by the 1945 Green Book papers of PM Mackenzie King, which was also to provide for the sacrifices of veterans during the war. In 1947, Tommy Douglas, Saskatchewan established Canada's first publicly-funded hospital insurance plan for his province only. One of the main concerns was doctors working for little to no pay.  The Canada Health and Social Transfers did not start until 1996.

 

Between 1945 and 1948 2 million Russian refugees were repatriated to the Soviet Union from the western countries. Many were jailed, exiled to Siberia, or executed. Many Russians claimed they belonged to other Slavic nations so they would not be sent back. In fact, the Soviet Union did not have agencies or immigration laws until 1990s.

There is no relationship between our people wanting health coverage and any perceived envy of the Soviet Union. In fact, this was the McCarthy era of Communist hatred in the U.S.

Propaganda

 

aka Mycroft said..."as long as corporations control the economy they essentially control the government. What about having people, not corporations, control the economy and the government? Why, that's socialism!"

 

What is the difference between socialism and communism?

 

Both socialism and communism advocate that goods, services and land should be owned publicly and controlled by government.

 

However, socialism pays an amount equal to a person's production. Communism pays an amount equal to a person's needs.

 

What would the disabled, socially inept, uneducated or less intelligent receive from a socialist form of government? Does non-productivity mean starvation?

 

As shown from my previous post, corporations are productive, innovative and technologically advanced. If they are removed from the system, our country will stagnate, just as Russia did. We don't need to control both corporations and the government, we only need to demand the government enforce fair laws. The government, by law, has total control over corporations. There is no guarantee that a socialist government would be any less corrupt than our democratic government.  

 

And if we can't control a democratic government, why would anyone think we would be able to control a socialistic government?

Jacob Two-Two

You must have skipped right over my post because you're still making all the same assumptions I pointed out were incorrect. Socialism does not equal fascism, nor does it necessarily imply government control. Socialism is when the workers own the means of production, and this could conceivably happen in a myriad of ways. I already outlined how democratic, independent, worker-owned co-operatives (you can still call them corporations if your brain is stuck on that word) could retain all the flexibility and innovation of the "free market" and not have our economy run for the rich by the rich.

A socialist economic system would be less corrupt than a capitalist system precisely because of the issue of ownership. When ownership is spread out more equally, not only does it make the economy more stable but it creates less room for corruption, in the same way that democracy has less room for corruption than a monarchy, because political power is spread out more widely. By the way, socialism and capitalism are economic systems. Democracy and fascism are political systems. It makes no sense to say that "a democratic system is better than a socialist system" because you're talking about two separate things. A country can easily be socialist and democratic, just as many countries are capitalist and fascist.

And saying that socialism only pays according to production is plain wrong. Where are you getting this from? Are you suggesting that welfare is a capitalist enterprise? That's one I haven't heard before.

aka Mycroft

Propaganda wrote:

 

aka Mycroft answered:

"But it only became a mass class after WWII when the west had to appease its populations with massive social transfers in order to head off the appeal of the Soviet Union."

 

In 1937 the Rowell-Sirois Commission on Dominion-Provincial Relations was the first effort to gain social insurance in Canada. This was followed by the 1945 Green Book papers of PM Mackenzie King, which was also to provide for the sacrifices of veterans during the war. In 1947, Tommy Douglas, Saskatchewan established Canada's first publicly-funded hospital insurance plan for his province only. One of the main concerns was doctors working for little to no pay.  The Canada Health and Social Transfers did not start until 1996.

The Canada Health and Social Transfer was an envelope of transfer payments to the provinces that replaced the Canada Assistance Plan of 1966 and another transfer program. CHST was actually a step backwards, it was part of Finance Minister Martin's deficit cutting plan, because it did not earmark specific funds for specific program but was a pool of money which the federal government could squeeze over time forcing the province to implement cuts. CHST was a step backwards but you see to just be reading bullet points off some list without any understanding. If you think social programs were the result of royal commissions then you really have no understanding of history (and no understanding that most royal commission reports gather dust without ever being implemented). What was the background to the 1937 Commission? What was happening in the country? There was social upheaval in both Canada and the US and the powers that be in both countries feared the rise of socialism and the potential for revolution. What party did Tommy Douglas belong to and how did it come to power in Saskatchewan?

 

Quote:

Between 1945 and 1948 2 million Russian refugees were repatriated to the Soviet Union from the western countries. Many were jailed, exiled to Siberia, or executed. Many Russians claimed they belonged to other Slavic nations so they would not be sent back. In fact, the Soviet Union did not have agencies or immigration laws until 1990s.

There is no relationship between our people wanting health coverage and any perceived envy of the Soviet Union. In fact, this was the McCarthy era of Communist hatred in the U.S.

Ever hear of the Marshall Program? Do you have any knowledge of the social context behind it? In western Europe immediately after World War II the largest party in France and Italy was the Communist Party and it looked like they might come to power while the much more moderate Labour Party in Britain won its first majority government. There was a left wing wave in western Europe as well as in Greece and the Marshall Plan was intended not only to rebuild Europe but to provide governments with money so they could implement comprehensive social programs which would blunt the appeal of Communism and socialism.

McCarthyism came a little bit later and was generated not from below by popular opinion but from above as another means of combatting the appeal of the left.

aka Mycroft

Propaganda wrote:
Atanasoff-Berry Computer (ABC) was dubbed the first electronic computer (1939 to 1942); no government funding.

Nope. Developed at the government supported Iowa State University.

Quote:

Aiken produced the Mark I in 1944 - IBM funded his research, not the government.

Not quite,

"When World War II began, all IBM facilities were placed at the disposal of the U.S. government."

I think you need to read up on state capitalism during World War II and how it worked.

remind remind's picture

Propaganda is sure shedding

Propaganda

 

Jacob Two-Two said: "You must have skipped right over my post because you're still making all the same assumptions I pointed out were incorrect."

 

I was being polite. Get a dictionary. And after you have read the definition of socialism, finish reading this post. To read it first would just confuse you more.

 

Your entire concept of worker-owned co-operatives is currently operating in Canadian society, as free market, capitalist, democratic businesses. It cannot be otherwise.

 

Socialist systems usually require not a distribution of money, but a distribution of goods/services in relation to a person's productive work. Such a distribution system would require a socialist government to fairly(?) distribute all the goods; and according to dictionary meaning, is one step before communism.

 

For a reasonable review of socialism, Google:

An In-Depth Look at Socialism by Tom Anderson

 

Ralph Nader had the best take on socialism:

 

Capitalism will never fail because socialism will always be there to bail it out.

Propaganda

 

aka Mycroft said: "Ever hear of the Marshall Program?"

 

Yeah, I know the Marshall Plan (not Program). What the hell does that have to do with Canadian people wanting health insurance in1937? Canada wasn't even part of the idea, never mind implementation of the Plan, it was your favorite theme - the United States. If you are going to argue with me, at least have the decency to stick to the topic. This is rabble/babble.CA

 

aka Mycroft: "Nope. (ABC Computer) Developed at the government supported Iowa State University."

 

Yeah, grant amount in dispute - either a whopping $650 or $850. So much for government R & D

 

aka Mycroft: "Quote: Aiken produced the Mark I in 1944 - IBM funded his research, not the government."

"Not quite, "When World War II began, all IBM facilities were placed at the disposal of the U.S. government." I think you need to read up on state capitalism during World War II and how it worked."

 

Really? Facilities at the disposal of U.S. government does not equate government financing.

 

For the truth see:

http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/exhibits/markI/markI_intro.html

 

"By then, IBM had spent approximately $200,000 on the project and donated an additional $100,000 to Harvard to cover the ASCC's operating expenses."

 

Not only do I know more about your famed theme - the United States, I also know more about Canada. What are you reading - some history prof who would rather pen poetry?

Propaganda

remind said: "Propaganda is sure shedding" 

Yeah, shedding a lot of  bullshit!

remind remind's picture

I agree you are!

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

Quote:
A personal attack often denotes an attacker who has weak arguments.

Yeah, we've noticed:

Quote:
I was being polite. Get a dictionary. And after you have read the definition of socialism, finish reading this post. To read it first would just confuse you more.

Wow. Is that your version of polite?

Propaganda

Read the entire post Jeeezus! Jacob was bitching because I didn't answer the first post he wrote (because I was being polite). But, then Jacob pushed it in his second post and told me I was incorrect.

"A personal attack often denotes an attacker who has weak arguments" was a warning, and I was polite in my first replies. But, after that they are fair game.

 

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

It's not a game, it's a joke. And you're the butt of it.

You can keep your warnings to yourself, along with your repulsive libertarian ideology.

Why exactly are you here?

Daedalus Daedalus's picture

contrarianna wrote:

CanWest is not concerned about the small hit on the "optics" side--after all, who will be reporting very much on that--and how many will be outraged by the illogic of the nuanced message of bailout?

 

 

Hmm ... bailouts do seem to be provoking a broad, hostile response at least in the US. Not that it impedes the banks and major corporations from going into a feeding frenzy on public funds.

aka Mycroft

Quote:

aka Mycroft: "Nope. (ABC Computer) Developed at the government supported Iowa State University."

 

Yeah, grant amount in dispute - either a whopping $650 or $850. So much for government R & D

 

How is a state funded university like Iowa State University funded propaganda? It's through more than grant money for an individual project.

 

As for the rest, read up on "miltary industrial complex" after you read up on "state capitalism".

aka Mycroft

Propaganda wrote:

 

aka Mycroft said: "Ever hear of the Marshall Program?"

 

Yeah, I know the Marshall Plan (not Program). What the hell does that have to do with Canadian people wanting health insurance in1937? Canada wasn't even part of the idea, never mind implementation of the Plan, it was your favorite theme - the United States. If you are going to argue with me, at least have the decency to stick to the topic. This is rabble/babble.CA

I'm talking about the welfare state in western Europe and the role of the Marshall Plan in facilitating it in an attempt to dissuade the European working class from supporting communism or radical socialism. In regards to heath insurance in 1937 I referred to the background of the Royal Commission and the social upheaval of the Great Depression and again, the role of the New Deal and its Canadian equivalent in heading off what seemed to many in the ruling class to be a march towards revolution. You've completely ignored my point, incidentally, about mass Communist parties in France and Italy which the US and the ruling class generally were very concerned about - these were popular parties, the largest parties in their respective countries so yes, in the late 1940s and even afterwards there was a very real prospect of Communism coming to power democratically in western Europe (which is what I was referring to when I talked about the post-war welfare state as a means of heading off the appeal of communism which is the point you arrogantly dismissed in contradiction to historians across the political spectrum. 

I also referred to the reasons why the CCF was able to come to power in Saskatchewan in 1944. You ignore all these points and, indeed, you ignore social context and substitute your own arrogance. Indeed, in your earlier recitation of dates you gave no indication that you knew who Tommy Douglas was or what he stood for when you mentioned his role in health insurance. A literal reading without comprehension was also evident in your reference to the Canada Health and Social Transfer which was also made without any concept of what the CHST was, what it replaced and what direction it represented.

Daedalus Daedalus's picture

Propaganda wrote:
Your entire concept of worker-owned co-operatives is currently operating in Canadian society, as free market, capitalist, democratic businesses. It cannot be otherwise.

Sure it can. Worker owned co-operatives have functioned in communist and even feudal economic systems.

 

Quote:
Socialist systems usually require not a distribution of money, but a distribution of goods/services in relation to a person's productive work. Such a distribution system would require a socialist government to fairly(?) distribute all the goods

Maybe, maybe not. You could have a system of labour-as-currency which doesn't involve any redistribution at all, just exchanges of labour value (certificates) for goods - which is what Marx espoused.

 

Quote:
Ralph Nader had the best take on socialism:

Capitalism will never fail because socialism will always be there to bail it out.

 

He wasn't the first to express similar sentiments:

A part of the bourgeoisie is desirous of redressing social grievances in order to secure the continued existence of bourgeois society . . .  By changes in the material conditions of existence, this form of socialism, however, by no means understands abolition of the bourgeois relations of production, an abolition that can be affected only by a revolution, but administrative reforms, based on the continued existence of these relations; reforms, therefore, that in no respect affect the relations between capital and labor, but, at the best, lessen the cost, and simplify the administrative work of bourgeois government.

 

Marx again (obviously).

 

Of course, thats an entirely different form of socialism than the one that is a prelude to communism or which seeks to abolish currency in favour of centralized redistribution of goods (I'm not sure such has been seriously practiced since Robert Owen ... even the state communist economies use, and have always used, currency).

 

Jacob Two-Two

Oh, polite. You were ignoring the fact that I was pointing out how the things you say don't make sense out of politeness. And here I thought you just had no defense of your lack of understanding. Thanks for clearing that up. No wait, you didn't clear it up, becasue you still haven't responded to anything I said.

I've read plenty on socialism thanks, and I'm well aware what the dictionary definition of socialism is as well, but dictionaries are just as susceptible to ideological error as you are (which is very susceptible, in case you're wondering). The problem with defining any concept as broad as these is that we can only talk about the kinds of capitalism we see in front of us and not all kinds that could possibly exist. With socialism, it's even harder, as there are so few examples to draw from and most of these are fascist. That does not mean that all kinds of socialist systems that could exist are also fascist. That is a narrow-minded lack of imagination on your part.

You are constantly equating socialism with fascism in your posts, acting as if we are all advocating Soviet-style command economies when we support socialism, but this is not the case, so you are merely flailing your arms at shadows smugly thinking you're scoring hits while we all wonder who that lunatic is doing that spastic dance. Stop arguing with the positions you imagine we are taking and argue with the actual people you are talking to. If you are incapable of doing this then we will eventually ignore you since you're incapable of rational discourse.

Do you agree you were confusing economic systems with political systems in your posts? If not, why not?

Propaganda

 

Yes, I absolutely equate economic systems with political systems, and see very little difference between the two.  To me they go hand in hand. A socialist system is distribution oriented; a capitalism system uses (the apparently dreaded) profit system.

 

I disagree with your assumption that dictionaries are susceptible to ideological error. Can you clarify your statement for me please?

 

If  defining socialism is so difficult, then how can you explain and defend your position to others? I am very curious about your (and obviously others) definition of socialism. Perhaps it would be easier for me to understand if it were called a different name - say democratic socialism? whatever.

 

You said, "Stop arguing with the positions you imagine we are taking and argue with the actual people you are talking to."

 

I have been thoroughly trained and it's ingrained in me to debate, argue and converse strictly on concrete concepts and issues; and to be able and willing to back up what I say with data. Use of words such as "your", "you", "me" and "I" are forbidden; the logic being that one loses focus on the issues at hand and concentrates on the 'messenger', thus evoking emotional responses and irrational replies.

 

Whether you choose to reply or not, thanks very much for clarifying your rules.  

 

remind remind's picture

Propaganda wrote:
Yes, I absolutely equate economic systems with political systems, and see very little difference between the two.  To me they go hand in hand. A socialist system is distribution oriented; a capitalism system uses (the apparently dreaded) profit system.

I disagree with your assumption that dictionaries are susceptible to ideological error. Can you clarify your statement for me please?

If  defining socialism is so difficult, then how can you explain and defend your position to others? I am very curious about your (and obviously others) definition of socialism. Perhaps it would be easier for me to understand if it were called a different name - say democratic socialism? whatever.

You said, "Stop arguing with the positions you imagine we are taking and argue with the actual people you are talking to."

I have been thoroughly trained and it's ingrained in me to debate, argue and converse strictly on concrete concepts and issues; and to be able and willing to back up what I say with data. Use of words such as "your", "you", "me" and "I" are forbidden; the logic being that one loses focus on the issues at hand and concentrates on the 'messenger', thus evoking emotional responses and irrational replies.

Whether you choose to reply or not, thanks very much for clarifying your rules.

  This is TFF considering how many times you used  ""your", "you", "me" and "I"" in your post. And we have yet to see you use data, nor address actual positions that people state, as opposed to making up positions for people and then address your creation, as opposed to what they said.

Socialism is a social system in which the producers produce and distribute their production efforts, as well as have a political voice along egalitarian lines.

 

aka Mycroft

I see you've ignored my points. I guess you prefer condescension to discussion.

Quote:
I disagree with your assumption that dictionaries are susceptible to ideological error

Depends who writes the dictionaries doesn't it? You could argue that other reference books such as atlases are not prone to the ideological tendencies of their publishers - but I recall old school atlases from the 1960s that had a political map of the world - showing the entire so-called "Communist World" in midnight black as if it was a cancer.

Jacob Two-Two

Propaganda wrote:

Yes, I absolutely equate economic systems with political systems, and see very little difference between the two.  To me they go hand in hand. A socialist system is distribution oriented; a capitalism system uses (the apparently dreaded) profit system.

They are certainly linked but it is incorrect to say that there's no difference. Why would there be different terms for them if this were the case? As I pointed out earlier, we live in a society that is (ostensibly) democratic, and also capitalist, yet there are many countries in the world that are also capitalist yet have zero democracy, so while they do influence each other heavily, clearly it is possible to separate the two.

Quote:
I disagree with your assumption that dictionaries are susceptible to ideological error. Can you clarify your statement for me please?

Sure. Let's pull a textbook definition of socialism off the internet:

1: any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods

2 a: a system of society or group living in which there is no private property b: a system or condition of society in which the means of production are owned and controlled by the state

3: a stage of society in Marxist theory transitional between capitalism and communism and distinguished by unequal distribution of goods and pay according to work done

None of these are incorrect, per se, but, just like you, they prusume that Soviet-style centralised management is the dominant model of socialist thought. The essential element of socialism is that the workers own the means of production. This does not have to be governmental or collective. If we had an economy where everyone produced everything they used themselves in their own back yard, it would a shitty economy but it would still be socialist, though it wouldn't fit into the above definitions. Of course, dictionaries deal in general overviews by their very nature. My point was that a dictionary is a poor starting point for an in-depth dicussion, as it glides over many nuances.

Quote:
If  defining socialism is so difficult, then how can you explain and defend your position to others? I am very curious about your (and obviously others) definition of socialism. Perhaps it would be easier for me to understand if it were called a different name - say democratic socialism? whatever.

Whatever? That part of that training you were talking about? Propaganda, your rebuttal? "Whatever"

I didn't mean that I couldn't define socialism, just that it is hard for a dictionary to define such a broad concept for us in a way that would be useful for our discussion. In fact, I have already given you my two-cent definition of socialism in an earlier post, posts which you are apparently not reading even as you're pulling quotes out of them. Socialism is when the workers own the means of production. It's all about ownership. See,in capitalism, capitalists own the means of production which is why they own the surplus value of the wealth that others create (don't thank me, I'm here to help). If the workers own the means of production, there is no surplus. All the wealth the workers create goes directly to them and not to capitalist parasites. This is the essential difference between them. How that ownership happens is possibly endless in variety of actual structure, but as long as this is satisfied, it's still socialism.

Quote:
You said, "Stop arguing with the positions you imagine we are taking and argue with the actual people you are talking to."

I have been thoroughly trained and it's ingrained in me to debate, argue and converse strictly on concrete concepts and issues; and to be able and willing to back up what I say with data. Use of words such as "your", "you", "me" and "I" are forbidden; the logic being that one loses focus on the issues at hand and concentrates on the 'messenger', thus evoking emotional responses and irrational replies.

Yeah, this is just stupid, in my opinion. You aren't debating on some world stage from some lofty viewpoint. You're debating with real people. Your supposed "detached" attitude led you into error by coming into a discussion with your pre-conceived notions of the definiton of the terms you were using, leading to you talking past everyone. Maybe you should come back to earth a little and that won't happen again. just sayin'.

 

Quote:
Whether you choose to reply or not, thanks very much for clarifying your rules. 

What? My rules? What are you talking about? Maybe it's your debating training impeding your ability to communicate but nothing you say ever seems to make any sense. Take this for instance.

Quote:
Your entire concept of worker-owned co-operatives is currently operating in Canadian society, as free market, capitalist, democratic businesses. It cannot be otherwise.

Are you saying that an economy where all industries were democratic and worker-owned would not be any different from the one we have? Or that it would be different but still be capitalism? I'm not sure but either way you're dead wrong. It would totally transform our economy and it wouldn't be even slightly capitalist. As I said, if workers own their own labour then there is no surplus value for capitalists to steal. So capitalists disappear. There are only workers and citizens.

1weasel

Thread drift anyone?

Jacob Two-Two

This is a full-on thread hijack, I think. :)

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Yeah, I'd agree with that J22.

Meanwhile, the Canadian tv scene is starting to feel some repercussions on this -- Canwest owns a number of specialty channels as well as Global Television, and nobody knows how this is all going to shake out.  Lots of independent producers and production companies (and the crews they hire) are feeling a little precarious these days.

remind remind's picture

Much like the rest of the working world then I guess. Too bad they are impacted by Canwest's karma and desire for a media hegemony, too though.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

I don't think "karma" has anything to do with it...  Didn't you just say something about superstition in another thread?  Anyway, Canwest doesn't have any different "karma" than any other large media company -- they've all been buying up specialty channels for years.  Even CBC has specialties.  Between restructuring the CTF to the benefit of the cable companies, Canwest's current difficulties, cuts to CBC and other areas of this particular cultural industry, we stand to see the voices of Canadians on your tv screen pretty much decimated.

aka Mycroft

Let's help that Canwest's newspapers aren't sold en bloc to a single buyer. It would be healthier for the country if the chain were broken up into two or three entities.

contrarianna

Propaganda wrote:
...

Understand, that this is just a paper transaction. CanWest profit for the quarter was $75 million.

....

This statement is less than meaningless.

Specifically, this 75 million is "operating profit", not "net profit"---it is Earnings Before Interest and Taxes (EBIT)--
and even if one does not include the writedowns in the equation, insolvency is a reality; the enormous interest due on the various debt vehicles has put CanW in critical red--with debtors demanding cash that isn't there unless assets are liquidated--or agree to a CanW restructuring of debt.

Read here some recent speculation in the Globe on possible scenarios that could unfold (not including Government intervention):

Quote:

If creditors are to call the shots at CanWest, look for asset sales

ANDREW WILLIS

April 16, 2009

As its all-but-worthless equity signals, the fate of CanWest Global Communications CGS-T is firmly in the hands of the media company's creditors.

But when, and how, will CanWest's various banks and bondholders actually seize the wheel? Here's a fearless stab at what might be coming in the next few weeks, as creditors take control of a family-owned company....

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20090416.RWILLIS16ART19...

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

Great point. In fact, as media consolidation has proven so problematic, all of their holdings should be sold as singular units - one newspaper at a time. If the Harperites were truly dedicated to a free press, liberty, and free markets (rather than corporatist control), they would legislate that it be so.

remind remind's picture

Timebandit wrote:
I don't think "karma" has anything to do with it...  Didn't you just say something about superstition in another thread?  Anyway, Canwest doesn't have any different "karma" than any other large media company -- they've all been buying up specialty channels for years.  Even CBC has specialties.  Between restructuring the CTF to the benefit of the cable companies, Canwest's current difficulties, cuts to CBC and other areas of this particular cultural industry, we stand to see the voices of Canadians on your tv screen pretty much decimated.

I do not see karma as superstition, I see it as your own energy that goes out from you in waves, it also returns to you as you own it, or it is of you. Actions are just like pebbles thrown into a pond, the pebble hitting the water creates ripples threw the water that travel out from point of entry and then return to said point.

Though I do agree about every other large media company having negative waves coming back to them too, they all  have willfully deceived and used negative propaganda against Canadians, as well as interferred with democratic functioning of Canada.

We have not heard the voices of Canadian on our TV screens for a long time, we have seen a select group of voices telling us what to believe, and nothing more, so really is it any great loss?

I am sure those in the industry are feeling  trepidation and uncertain about their future, but no more so than millions of other Canadians are currently.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Um, yes you do get Canadian voices on tv...  Ever hear of Corner Gas?  Little Mosque?  They may or may not be to your taste, but I assure you they are most definitely Canadian shows made by Canadians for Canadians.

 

Personally, I've been making Canadian tv, mostly documentary, for about a decade now.  It's there if you look for it.  But hey, thanks for noticing.  I hope you can be all ke sera sera when it's your living we're talking about.

 

Quote:

I do not see karma as superstition, I see it as your own energy that goes out from you in waves, it also returns to you as you own it, or it is of you. Actions are just like pebbles thrown into a pond, the pebble hitting the water creates ripples threw the water that travel out from point of entry and then return to said point.

 

Yeah, that doesn't sound superstitious at all...

remind remind's picture

Yes, I know what you have been doing, and would like to see your most recent documentary, sounds very interesting, as was your small town big business one. And I believe that no matter who takes over the TV stations across Canada  your documentaries will be desired, perhaps even more than they are now. But you must realize that what  you produce, good content though it is,  is viewed by few, as they are too consumed by the propaganda shows.

Not going to debate whether Corner Gas and Little Mosque is the voice of Canadians, or not. It is subjective to indiviuals. And yes, I know you were involved in the early episodes of it.

No superstition, karma is actually laws of physics applied timebandit, I simply call it karma for lack of a better word that is readily understandable. Everyone has their own vibrational frequency, just as every other thing does, on this planet. And it is that individual frequency which causes organ and tissue transplant rejections, even if the blood types of donar and recipient are the same, or even if it comes from the same family with the same blood type. Our individual  thoughts and actions are our energy in motion specific to us, by the laws of physics pertaining to energy in motion, and thus come back to us, just like throwing a bomerrang does, or dropping a pebble into a pond.

Everyone across Canada was all ke sera when it was our living here in BC  that was yanked out, and still BC happens to be shedding the most jobs of all, across Canada. But I guess you  all were too busy being all ke sara and too self involved to notice, but yet now you apparently still expect others to care when it is happening to you.  Having said that, I do care, actually, I know personally how it feels, but I believe you have a market niche with a bright future ahead, even though  the way got, or is getting, a bit bumpy for the moment, so I am a bit less concerned about you in partiicular, than I am for blue collar janes and joes.

 

Diogenes Diogenes's picture

Canwest has been journalistically bankrupt for years.  The Black-Radler business model was to reduce costs and maximize revenues.  Since reporting the news costs money, you fire the expense-account journalists, promote the best writers to columnists and the most loyal sycophants to editors.  That way you can pull all the news you need off the wire, and entertain readers with witty columnists who specialize in reading their own newpapers and feel no need to verify the source of their information, or even disclose it, before rendering an analysis.

Is it any wonder that readership is declining?  The media seem to have forgotten that people pay for both good writing and good reporting.  The internet is much better at reporting news now than Canada's mainstream media.  At least on the internet you can find both sides of the story.

The recent one-side reporting and editorializing on George Galloway by Canwest was the most blatant example of manufactured consent I have witnessed. I hope Canwest goes bankrupt.  No other newspaper chain deserves it more than they do.

Hope this comment does some thread drift correction.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

remind wrote:

Yes, I know what you have been doing, and would like to see your most recent documentary, sounds very interesting, as was your small town big business one. And I believe that no matter who takes over the TV stations across Canada  your documentaries will be desired, perhaps even more than they are now. But you must realize that what  you produce, good content though it is,  is viewed by few, as they are too consumed by the propaganda shows.

Not going to debate whether Corner Gas and Little Mosque is the voice of Canadians, or not. It is subjective to indiviuals. And yes, I know you were involved in the early episodes of it.

No superstition, karma is actually laws of physics applied timebandit, I simply call it karma for lack of a better word that is readily understandable. Everyone has their own vibrational frequency, just as every other thing does, on this planet. And it is that individual frequency which causes organ and tissue transplant rejections, even if the blood types of donar and recipient are the same, or even if it comes from the same family with the same blood type. Our individual  thoughts and actions are our energy in motion specific to us, by the laws of physics pertaining to energy in motion, and thus come back to us, just like throwing a bomerrang does, or dropping a pebble into a pond.

Everyone across Canada was all ke sera when it was our living here in BC  that was yanked out, and still BC happens to be shedding the most jobs of all, across Canada. But I guess you  all were too busy being all ke sara and too self involved to notice, but yet now you apparently still expect others to care when it is happening to you.  Having said that, I do care, actually, I know personally how it feels, but I believe you have a market niche with a bright future ahead, even though  the way got, or is getting, a bit bumpy for the moment, so I am a bit less concerned about you in partiicular, than I am for blue collar janes and joes.

 

No, I wasn't involved in either Corner Gas (although we produce the web site) or Little Mosque, but I know the producers for both series fairly well, which is probably why they popped into my head.  Again, they are Canadian voices - Brent Butt and Zarqa Nawaz are both very much Canadian and there is no foreign involvement in the writing or production of either series.  That would absolutely make them Canadian.  There is no debate to be had.

My point about Canadian content is that what is there is in some jeopardy right now - Canwest being one of the factors.  And it's the blue collar joes and janes, the crew folks, who will be out of work first if the season opens without enough green-lit projects.  And no, I don't recall making any uncaring comments in any discussion about BC workers losing their livlihoods.

Pages