The Decline of Modern Capitalism’s Traditional Advantages

Repost from the old site.

Modern capitalism seems to be losing a lot of the advantages that it had over Soviet style Communism, and the Net and computers seem to be at the root of this decay.

It’s as if the capitalists don’t care anymore. They don’t care if their product works or not, they don’t care if they rip you off or not, they won’t give you a refund, they sometimes won’t even give you the product after you buy it, they have eliminated customer service, and, most insane of all, sometimes they even make it almost impossible to even buy their product.

They said the Net and computers were going to make our lives better, but I don’t see how they have. If it has anything to do with the Net, it seems like it sucks. What has the Net done for workers? Nothing. It’s allowed people in India, the Philippines and Eastern Europe to compete with Americans by outsourcing work. Great!

Some examples:

There’s plenty of work out there writing junk copy for websites that only exist to somehow make money (not sure how). You’re just writing filler. A lot of it is in porn. I got approached by someone the other day about writing this junk copy, but the pay was $10/hour, so I said forget it. That’s junk for writing prose on the Net. I told him to walk.

Turned out I was competing with writers of “English” from Eastern Europe, India and the Philippines. They were mostly working for $5/hour or even less. So even writers now are getting screwed down in a race for the bottom. Who’s next?

There’s a lot more ways the Net has helped create World O’ Crap. Look at how many ways a brick and mortar store is better than e-commerce. The main problem with e-commerce is that it sucks.

E-commerce merchants have a right to bitch about it, but they have created this Shitworld of e-commerce. In their mad insistence that the Net not be regulated, the world of e-commerce is full of more sleazeballs and slimers than you could count for the rest of your life.

It’s so easy to rip people off over the Net. I have purchased several things off the Net, including website memberships, that were total ripoffs. Quite a few software programs sold over the Net are absolute crap.

There are more problems. In a good number of cases, you try to buy something off the Net and the e-commerce site fucks it up. It will only let you order 3 packages, not 10. After you order, it gives you a database failure page implying the transaction failed, then sends you a mail congratulating you on the sale.

I bought a spyware killer program that it turned out I did not even need from a ripoff website. They quickly took my $30, but then they tried to bill it to my address as my name – for instance, “Thank you for your purchase, Mr. 35889 West Jones Street.” There was no way to go back and change my name from my street address to Robert Lindsay. No way would that happen in a brick and mortar.

Then I could not even download the program. I kept trying over and over for two days, and they kept sending me links that didn’t work.

Can you imagine that happening in a brick and mortar? First they take your money, then they tell you to come back in an hour to pick up the product. You come back in an hour and it’s not there. They give you a new address to pick it up at. You go there and it’s not there. This goes on for two days, you running all over town to pick up your product, but it’s never there.

One great thing about brick and mortars is I can always get a refund. And I can always speak to a human being. Try getting a refund off the Net via e-commerce. Almost impossible. The worst thing about e-commerce is that they have managed to get rid of human beings altogether.

A lot of times, online stores do let you order by phone, but when you dial the number, no one is ever there. When you can’t deal with humans via phone, it’s hard to get anything done. They do often end up emailing you back and forth, but that doesn’t work very well.

I bought a software program from a large company that refused to install on my system. I’m so discouraged by this Shit E-Commerce World that I haven’t even bothered to call the company up to complain. I just wasted the $30. At a brick and mortar, if something doesn’t work or its a rip-off, you just take it back. I’ve never had a problem yet.

Customer service is just one more thing that has been destroyed by the Internet and computers.

A lot of website memberships are just ripoffs. Quite a few software programs just don’t work. One more thing wrecked by computers and the Net – product quality.

Capitalists at least used to be able to say that customer service was pretty good under their system. Customer service was often bad under Soviet style Communism. You went into a restaurant in Russia, and the help was rude. If you complained, you got a shrugging shoulder. There was no way to fire anyone.

Now capitalism, along with all its other disadvantages, increasingly has customer service as shitty or nonexistent as it was under Communism.

One more thing you could always say about capitalism was that product quality was often good. If not, if you had the money, you could buy something worthwhile. There was cheap crap, but for a bit more money, you could get something decent.

Under Soviet style Communism, it is true that there were often crappy products. Now it seems that capitalism is even losing this advantage. Product quality is declining under capitalism to where we cannot anymore say that capitalism at least produces good products.

Another advantage of capitalism is that the products are always available. No lines, no shortages, plenty of stuff on the shelves. Shortages and lines have long been the bane of Soviet-style Communism. But under capitalism now, at least on the Internet, there are quite a few e-commerce sites whose stores are so broken it is almost impossible to buy their product. I never thought that I would see that under capitalism.

As we can see, in addition to all of the negatives that capitalism has in relation to socialism (read any socialist critique of capitalism to learn what those are), modern capitalism is even starting to lose some systemic advantages that it has often had recently.

And computers and the Net are at the core of a lot of this system decay in the quality of the modern capitalist system.

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