Letter and responses lead to other questions

This epistle is meant as a response to Mick Bloom’s Nov. 5 critique of my previous letter. Truly, I am forever grateful for his help in unraveling a couple of my puzzles.

However, since Mick is obviously a well-educated, articulate person, he is quite well aware that the process of answering one question invariably produces a pile full of others. That’s how Socrates, the master of questioning, could say, “There’s only one thing I know, and that one thing is: I know nothing!”

Thus it is unsurprising, Mick, how your commentary suggests an array of other questions. Time and space do not permit me to mention them all, but here are a few for you to consider.

• If “capital” is not a synonym for “money” why is it listed as such in my “Oxford American Writer’s Thesaurus”?

• The Scotttish economist, Adam Smith, completed a qualitative study of capitalism. One of his major conclusions came to be that the principle of a free market economy only works at the local regional level. Do you agree? Why or why not?

• In view of the enormous, widespread financial policies of the great many U.S. federal and state agencies, how is it conceivable for you to say that under capitalism within the U. S. that “The state or government is not materially involved”?

• Has there ever been historically any nation who actually used the economic systems of either socialism or communism within a democratic political framework? If so, what are they? If not, why not?

• What are your reflections upon the writings of Karl Marx, Leon Trotsky and C. Wright Mills?

• Regarding voting and the Declaration of Independence, if requiring one to vote would restrict one’s pursuit of happiness, then doesn’t any law do this? Wouldn’t many people be much happier to not be forced to wear seat belts while driving or riding in an auto?

• Finally, why don’t we all “Love our neighbors as ourself”? There must be a reason for this! So what is it?

At any rate, Mick, thank you very much for your thoughts and insight. In the event my position is “fallacious,” well, it hasn’t been the first time! Whenever I make a mistake it brings to mind Alexander Pope’s famous line, “To err is human, to forgive is divine!”

R. Steele Selby

Frostburg

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