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Capitalism and the Art of Hand Sanitizer

HomerJS

Lifer
Feb 6, 2002
25,045
9,924
136
I have a question for those who constantly demonize socialism, while extolling the virtues of capitalism. Capitalism all the way baby!

One on the tenants of capitalism is the economic model called supply and demand. Simply put high demand along with short supply begets higher prices. Because of the spread of COVID-19 regardless of its rationality demand for hand sanitizer has shot through the roof. For all you pure capitalists, why shouldn't manufacturers/suppliers of hand sanitizer jack up prices 2-3x following the rules of capitalism?

I used this example in the past, capitalism allows rolling into Florida after the passing of Hurricane Andrew charge $20/lb for ice and get it.

Using the example of hand sanitizer and ice we don't price gouge during a time of dire need. We take into account the needs of society and refrain from taking advantage. Wait a second!! We take into account the needs of SOCIETY?? Refrain from practicing pure capitalism in times of need?

Socialism has many definitions. Too many to expound on but here is one of the tenets simplified
The term socialism refers to any system in which the production and distribution of goods and services is a shared responsibility of a group of people.
While not advocating for the change of this countries economic model I will point out the quick leap to demonize any form of socialism when we are executing a form of it right now. Suspending the rules of supply and demand because of our shared responsibility to society.

We choose to enforce our humanity and not practice pure capitalism in times like these. Remember, there is no humanity chapter in the encyclopedia of capitalism.
 
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sandorski

No Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
67,805
2,920
126
Economic systems are synthetic and merely exist as ways to distribute Goods/Services. The various systems we develop have strengths and weaknesses, but sometimes Ideologues insist that their system is perfect when such an assertion is absurd. It takes time for the absurdities to be realized though, so when they appear the Ideologues are slow to realize it.

More pragmatic people are flexible and borrow between the differing systems applying them where needed. Most Nations operate this way, although some have stronger Ideological entrenchments than others.
 
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Majes

Golden Member
Apr 8, 2008
1,134
112
106
The government is welcome to step in to protect the worker or the consumer. But when government becomes the business it tends to get its priorities all messed up...
 

UNCjigga

Lifer
Dec 12, 2000
22,531
4,698
136
The government is welcome to step in to protect the worker or the consumer. But when government becomes the business it tends to get its priorities all messed up...
Hence why NY State is now mass producing their own hand sanitizer.
 
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fleshconsumed

Diamond Member
Feb 21, 2002
5,911
1,201
136
The answer I always get is jacking up prices is the most efficient way to solve the problem because suppliers will respond to high demand/high prices better and would be more willing to boost production to fill the demand/supply gap...

I don't think that works in emergency situations like post hurricane or coronavirus panic, but that is the capitalist answer.
 

ShookKnight

Senior member
Dec 12, 2019
646
656
96
Capitalist cheerleaders make me sick to my stomach. They usually bash women for complaining they aren't get paid well (i.e. you ladies didn't ne-go-she-ate!! LOLZ!), but turn a complete blind eye to billion dollar bail outs and the capital markets being pumped with cash in the billions.

Here is the thing... capitalist cheerleaders are just haters hiding behind the 'glory' of capitalism. If they really believed what they are preaching, then they would have sunk their teeth into bail outs, subsidies and all sorts of money monkey shines currently happening with their corporate overlords.
 
Dec 10, 2005
20,480
1,799
126
Capitalist cheerleaders make me sick to my stomach. They usually bash women for complaining they aren't get paid well (i.e. you ladies didn't ne-go-she-ate!! LOLZ!), but turn a complete blind eye to billion dollar bail outs and the capital markets being pumped with cash in the billions.

Here is the thing... capitalist cheerleaders are just haters hiding behind the 'glory' of capitalism. If they really believed what they are preaching, then they would have sunk their teeth into bail outs, subsidies and all sorts of money monkey shines currently happening with their corporate overlords.
It's modern day rent-seeking: privatize the profits and publicize the losses. Millions of people think that this is acceptable, for some reason. We should wrap a cooper wire around Adam Smith for free electricity, since he's probably rolling over in his grave with the bastardization of "the market".
 

glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,388
1,013
126
I have a question for those who constantly demonize socialism, while extolling the virtues of capitalism. Capitalism all the way baby!

One on the tenants of capitalism is the economic model called supply and demand. Simply put high demand along with short supply begets higher prices. Because of the spread of COVID-19 regardless of its rationality demand for hand sanitizer has shot through the roof. For all you pure capitalists, why shouldn't manufacturers/suppliers of hand sanitizer jack up prices 2-3x following the rules of capitalism?

I used this example in the past, capitalism allows rolling into Florida after the passing of Hurricane Andrew charge $20/lb for ice and get it.

Using the example of hand sanitizer and ice we don't price gouge during a time of dire need. We take into account the needs of society and refrain from taking advantage. Wait a second!! We take into account the needs of SOCIETY?? Refrain from practicing pure capitalism in times of need?

Socialism has many definitions. Too many to expound on but here is one of the tenets simplified


While not advocating for the change of this countries economic model I will point out the quick leap to demonize any form of socialism when we are executing a form of it right now. Suspending the rules of supply and demand because of our shared responsibility to society.

We choose to enforce our humanity and not practice pure capitalism in times like these. Remember, there is no humanity chapter in the encyclopedia of capitalism.
Capitalism can limit "price gouging" at the expense of causing shortages and inefficient distribution (basically it's "first come first served" without regard to need). Prices are a signal and if you simply disallow high prices due to a crisis situation the signal doesn't work. If you're willing to accept that tradeoff to "prevent people from getting screwed" then basically you're accepting the tradeoff that another person/organization may need to do without. Joe Blow gets his case of Purell for "regular" retail price and the ER department of the hospital goes without.
 
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glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,388
1,013
126
GOP: "Money > Peoples lives" "F your feelz"
If you need to risk getting coronavirus to make new deliveries of hand sanitizer to the retirement home where there's 40 confirmed cases and "price gouging" rules are in effect, or can get the same price delivering to the suburban CVS where there's no cases then where would you go? Who's going to take the risk to deliver stuff to the hurricane area/contagion zone if there's no incentive for doing so? It just means the stricken areas do without.
 
Nov 29, 2006
14,453
2,145
126
If you need to risk getting coronavirus to make new deliveries of hand sanitizer to the retirement home where there's 40 confirmed cases and "price gouging" rules are in effect, or can get the same price delivering to the suburban CVS where there's no cases then where would you go? Who's going to take the risk to deliver stuff to the hurricane area/contagion zone if there's no incentive for doing so? It just means the stricken areas do without.
Maybe the incentive could be helping your fellow humans? No money needed?
 

glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,388
1,013
126
Maybe the incentive could be helping your fellow humans? No money needed?
You volunteering? Maybe some of your progressive friends will surely chip in with their personal funds and assume the health risks for the sake of "helping your fellow humans."
 
Nov 29, 2006
14,453
2,145
126
You volunteering? Maybe some of your progressive friends will surely chip in with their personal funds and assume the health risks for the sake of "helping your fellow humans."
I'm not selling hand sanitizer. Sorry. But if i was i think id keep my price just the same as it was all along. If not lower it to help.

<--404 Humanity found
 

glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,388
1,013
126
I'm not selling hand sanitizer. Sorry. But if i was i think id keep my price just the same as it was all along. If not lower it to help.

<--404 Humanity found
Then you'd run out because people with no need would simply hoard and/or resell at a markup. All you're doing is shifting the profit to someone else and exacerbating the problem. After Joe Blow buys up your supply do you think everyone else will simply say "that's OK, I'd rather do without then need to pay above shelf price before the crisis"?
 
Nov 29, 2006
14,453
2,145
126
Then you'd run out because people with no need would simply hoard and/or resell at a markup. All you're doing is shifting the profit to someone else and exacerbating the problem. After Joe Blow buys up your supply do you think everyone else will simply say "that's OK, I'd rather do without then need to pay above shelf price before the crisis"?
I guess i could sleep easy at night knowing i'm not a shitbag human?
 

glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,388
1,013
126
I guess i could sleep easy at night knowing i'm not a shitbag human?
OK but after your supply sold out a few seconds after you made it available there's still going to be 99.99% of the market doing without including the hospital which really could have used the sanitizer more than Joe Blow and would have paid you more to ensure their supply. Too bad those patients will just die of sepsis so you could "sleep easy at night" ensuring others wouldn't bring additional supply on line since the reward would better reflect the risk.
 

[DHT]Osiris

Diamond Member
Dec 15, 2015
8,005
3,822
146
Too bad those patients will just die of sepsis so you could "sleep easy at night" ensuring others wouldn't bring additional supply on line since the reward would better reflect the risk.
So wait, it's his fault those patients died of sepsis because he refused to gouge prices high enough that only the hospitals would buy them?

You're twisted, bruh.
 
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glenn1

Lifer
Sep 6, 2000
25,388
1,013
126
So wait, it's his fault those patients died of sepsis because he refused to gouge prices high enough that only the hospitals would buy them?

You're twisted, bruh.
Again the entire point of "price gouging" being in play means it's a price signal to other potential market participants to bring more supply into the system. You can either have low prices or additional supply in that situation.
 
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Nov 29, 2006
14,453
2,145
126
Again the entire point of "price gouging" being in play means it's a price signal to other potential market participants to bring more supply into the system. You can either have low prices or additional supply in that situation.
Or you could do both if you wanted. Lower prices in time of crisis, but also increase supply. If your fine taking in less money that is. Which you are not apparently. So back to Money > All
 

[DHT]Osiris

Diamond Member
Dec 15, 2015
8,005
3,822
146
Again the entire point of "price gouging" being in play means it's a price signal to other potential market participants to bring more supply into the system. You can either have low prices or additional supply in that situation.
You think the fact that it's selling out literally everywhere isn't a signal to potential market participants? It's literally selling as fast as they can make it, what would increasing price do other than screw people over?
 
Dec 10, 2005
20,480
1,799
126
You think the fact that it's selling out literally everywhere isn't a signal to potential market participants? It's literally selling as fast as they can make it, what would increasing price do other than screw people over?
It sounds like someone is proposing some fantastical system where suppliers can instantly produce and deliver more supplies during panic buying...
 
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[DHT]Osiris

Diamond Member
Dec 15, 2015
8,005
3,822
146
It sounds like someone is proposing some fantastical system where suppliers can instantly produce and deliver more supplies during panic buying...
And conveniently make more money off the crisis, of course.

But that's just market signaling, not gouging. That should be one of the Ferengi Rules of Acquisition.
 
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