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Re: JOIN THE PROTEST - WalMart High Cost...

> Besides, I don’t know whether it’s accurate to describe corporate structure
> as “dictatorial”. Public corporations are owned by stockholders, who vote
> to elect a board of directors. That sounds pretty democratic to me.

Ah, but there's a difference between the owning class and the working class. The owning class just sits around doing nothing, and yet they have the power to control the company. The working class is putting forth all the effort, yet they have less say over their own destinies. Sure there are employees who may own some stock in their corporations, but you'll have to admit they have even less control over their board elections than citizens over their political representations in capitalist democracies.

If capitalists can't accept that those on welfare aren't working for their money, anti-capitalists can't accept that shareholders aren't working for their money.

> > if the CEO's salary is determined by the employees instead of the other
> > way around, you're much more likely to have more even pay scales.
> I’m not sure you would. The employees would still have to be offering enough
> to attract competent management…

That remains to be seen. I think you overestimate the value that management has over the performance of a company. Many anarcho-syndicalists would argue that having permanent management in place results in a group of people who will eventually start to make decisions based more on their own interest than the interests of the company. The United States has term limits for presidents after all, for similar reasons.

> Let’s say a manager knew of a new automated assembly system that could
> improve productivity, reduce costs, and make the company more competitive.
> However, it would also make 30% of the current employees unnecessary.

I think you've forgotten the reasons a group of people come together to form a company (or a government) in the first place. It's not for the sake of the company or government itself, it is for their own sake. If the company or government fails to provide for the benefit of its people, then it is a failure. If a democratically run company has a way to require 30% less labor, then I would imagine either it would not require its employees to work 30% as much (leaving more time for leisure), or it would at least keep them around until they've found work elsewhere. You're forgetting the principle that decisions are made based on who the decision affects the most. Clearly the manager isn't affected as much as the laid off worker (unless the manager decides to lay himself off as well).

Some of the more environmentally minded folks would argue that instead of forcing 30% of the employees to start up in some other industry, everyone should just work less and thus use up less natural resources in production. Personally, I'm neutral with regard to this proposition.

> It’s hard to see sometimes, but inefficiency hurts those with less spending
> power.

Sure inefficiency hurts, but we see inefficiency in different places. When there are large concentrations of wealth, whether it's with individuals or corporations, then inefficiency happens because the big spenders cause resources to be allocated to serve them, and not other people. Take the corporation I work for, for example. It makes the vast majority of its money selling software to other corporations (where all the money is) and not to average consumers. Its own landscaping is perfectly manicured. It has large expensive office buildings. Local resources are being spent to serve this corporation instead of its employees. Of course, I don't even have to mention the size of our chairman's home.

> > I'm not going to force democracy on you, but if the majority of the
> > employees in your company want democracy, then the government should not
> > be allowed to prevent them.
> Actually, I’m going to surprise you: I completely agree with you.

Well, if you support, for example, the right of workers to occupy and work their bankrupt factories, as in Argentina right now (everything2.com/index.pl?node_id=1482898), or the right of peasants to occupy and farm on unused land in Brazil (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Landless_Workers_Movement), or in general the right of employees to assume control over the means of production, then I would not classify you as a capitalist.

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