Seeing this as a perfect place to answer YB’s questions in the previous United Nations thread, I will try to answer his misconceptions on Communism.
Here is the original message as posted:
Moses(U.S.), Fisternis(Europe), Ghoul(Canada), Communism cannot work… If you take incentives out of work, then people do crappy ass jobs. Plus central planning/command economies are bad because some decisions have to be so decentralized they have to be made by individual people (Consumers) These are the problems are Communist countries get tripped up on.
False! First of all, I like to contest you view that “If you take incentives out of work, then people do crappy ass jobs.”
Now many people (especially those in the capitalistic machine) believe that rewards promote better performance. However, (as reported by the Boston Globe) a growing body of research suggests that this law is not nearly as ironclad as was once thought. Psychologists have been finding that rewards can lower performance levels, especially when the performance involves creativity. A related series of studies shows that intrinsic interest in a task - the sense that something is worth doing for its own sake - typically declines when someone is rewarded for doing it. For example, if a reward - money, awards, or winning a contest - comes to be seen as the reason one is engaging in an activity, that activity will be viewed as less enjoyable in its own right.
I a related experiment, 72 creative writers at Brandeis and at Boston
University were told to write poetry. Some students then were given a list of extrinsic (external) reasons for writing, such as impressing teachers,
making money and getting into graduate school, and were asked to think
about their own writing with respect to these reasons. Others were
given a list of intrinsic reasons: the enjoyment of playing with
words, satisfaction from self-expression, and so forth. A third group
was not given any list. All were then asked to do more writing.
The results were clear. Students given the extrinsic reasons not only
wrote less creatively than the others, as judged by 12 independent
poets, but the quality of their work dropped significantly. It was found that “Rewards have this destructive effect primarily with creative
tasks, including higher-level problem-solving. The more complex the
activity, the more it’s hurt by extrinsic reward."
With the exception of some behaviorists who doubt the very existence of intrinsic motivation, these conclusions are now widely accepted among psychologists. Taken together, they suggest we may unwittingly be squelching interest and discouraging innovation among workers, students, and artists.
The recognition that rewards can have counter-productive effects is based on a variety of studies, which have come up with such findings as these: Young children who are rewarded for drawing are less likely to draw on their own that are children who draw just for the fun of it. Teenagers offered rewards for playing word games enjoy the games less and do not do as well as those who play with no rewards. Employees who are praised for meeting a manager’s expectations suffer a drop in motivation.
Plus central planning/command economies are bad because some decisions have to be so decentralized they have to be made by individual people (Consumers)
This statement implies you have relatively little idea of what the advances in communism today. In contemporary, self-organizing communism, the decisions are made by the people using bottom-up planning (which leads to more democratic decisions by the masses). This way a high-synergy complex adaptive system can be achieved without need for a highly planned centralized government. I have discussed this before with cooperative anarchy - people working together without a formal central authority.
With the coming of the 21st Century Information War, there does not have to be a need for a single, authoritative center. The overhead of the economy can revolve around a large number of groups or units, independent or semi-independent from one another. They would then perform analysis of the economy and the making of recommendations, coming to a loose consensus on what plans to implement. Now sometimes top-down methods are necessary (which YB is speaking of, I think), but we should first consider ways of accomplishing as much as possible without resort it. Bottom down planning includes much more parallelity, allowing greater brainpower to be applied to the problem. This way more knowledge and experience are gained.