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Drace replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:28 PM

I'm sorry, did I just hear an "anarchist" say what's wrong with hierarchy? Please just call your self Ayn Randians, Hayekians, Lassiez-faire capitalists, but no t anarchists, please.

I think reality speaks for itself.

What's wrong with kings owning and ruling all the land? Whats wrong with slavery?

Whats wrong with 1% of the population owning all the institutes of production and using 99% of the population for their profits?

 

The result is a huge gap between rich and poor, the princple of "might makes right" being put in practice, poverty, starvation, etc.

 

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yessir replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:28 PM

you are trying to argue with someone who said "self-ownership is a ridiculous concept"?

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yessir replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:30 PM

 Please Drace, make a coherent argument (like maybe show why equality is the highest ideal, or how private property means slavery etc) or go away....

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Drace replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:30 PM
If by self-ownership you mean private property and allowing 1% of the population to own 40% of the wealth, then umm...
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yessir replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:31 PM

 OK Please show me how private property means that 1% will own 40% of wealth AND why that is bad....1 2 3 go!

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Drace replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:36 PM

http://www.guardian.co.uk/money/2006/dec/06/business.internationalnews

http://www.demos-usa.org/inequality/numbers.cfm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Distribution_of_wealth

http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/power/wealth.html

 

Why that is bad? Really? That means the top 3 richest people in the world have more wealth then the bottom 10% (600,000,000). Don't you see how this translates to starvation and poverty?

But of course, private property rights are more important than human life.

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yessir replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:38 PM

 I will read your links soon, meanwhile please explain the steps to go from

Premise:   That means the top 3 richest people in the world have more wealth then the bottom 10% (600,000,000).

Conclusion: Don't you see how this translates to starvation and poverty?

 

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Drace, you seem to be stuck on the nominal values money, and also thinking money = wealth, the two are not the same.

A basic example.  Let us focus on "the poor".  If the price of goods fall, while pay stays the same, do people become more wealthy?  refrigerators, air conditioning, running water, large assortments of food, electricity, computers, cell phones, TV.

These are things that the poor can get, that even the top 1%, 3%, 10%, and 80% of a couple of centuries ago could not.

Also, I think you fall under the fallacy of thinking the economy is a pie, and the fallacy of thinking that trade is a zero-sum game.

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Drace replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:44 PM

Premise:   That means the top 3 richest people in the world have more wealth then the bottom 10% (600,000,000).

Conclusion: Don't you see how this translates to starvation and poverty?

At this point I'd be suprised if you could add 2+2 and say whether its larger than 6 or not.

 

If there is 100 sandwitches, and one person owns 40 of them, and the top 5 own 60 of them, and the top 10 own 80%, then I think you can see the problem?

But hell

http://www.globalissues.org/article/26/poverty-facts-and-stats

Poverty and inequality exists at massive measures. There is no denying that. The best you can do is argue that this is the result of corporatism and the state, and the solution would be the abolition of the two.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Deace:
I'm sorry, did I just hear an "anarchist" say what's wrong with hierarchy?

 Please just call your self Ayn Randians, Hayekians, Lassiez-faire capitalists, but no t anarchists, please.

Irrelevant.

Drace:
I think reality speaks for itself.

What's wrong with kings owning and ruling all the land? Whats wrong with slavery?

Whats wrong with 1% of the population owning all the institutes of production and using 99% of the population for their profits?

Non-answer answer.

  

Deace:
The result is a huge gap between rich and poor,

What's wrong with that?

Deace:
the princple of "might makes right" being put in practice,

Please explain.

Deace:
poverty,

How is this determined? Do you take the bottom rung of the wealth scale and say "hey, they have less than everyone else, therefore, they must be poor relative to the people who have more"?

starvation, etc.

Examples. please.

To paraphrase Marc Faber: We're all doomed, but that doesn't mean that we can't make money in the process.
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Drace replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:48 PM
Drace, you seem to be stuck on the nominal values money, and also thinking money = wealth, the two are not the same.

A basic example. Let us focus on "the poor". If the price of goods fall, while pay stays the same, do people become more wealthy? refrigerators, air conditioning, running water, large assortments of food, electricity, computers, cell phones, TV.

These are things that the poor can get, that even the top 1%, 3%, 10%, and 80% of a couple of centuries ago could not.

Also, I think you fall under the fallacy of thinking the economy is a pie, and the fallacy of thinking that trade is a zero-sum game.
All very irrelevant. The studies were done by per capita wealth. No, the economy is not zero-sum, but that doesn't change anything.
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Drace:
allowing 1% of the population to own 40% of the wealth

What's wrong with that? And please, no appeals to envy or other appeals to emotion.

To paraphrase Marc Faber: We're all doomed, but that doesn't mean that we can't make money in the process.
Rabbi Lapin: "Let's make bricks!"
Stephan Kinsella: "Say you and I both want to make a German chocolate cake."

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Drace replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:50 PM

Jesus, you guys are worse than trying to convince fascists that white power is shit.

If you can't see the link between 1% of the population owning 40% of the wealth and poverty, then theres not much I can do.

What's wrong with that? And please, no appeals to envy or other appeals to emotion.

So it seems caring for the state humanity and its troubles is emotional, and thus irrelevant in a political discussion? But of course, if we care for private property, its not emotional. Its a natural right that cannot be argued with.

Your a cult.

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Drace:
The studies were done by per capita wealth.

Value is subjective. How was the wealth per capita determined?

To paraphrase Marc Faber: We're all doomed, but that doesn't mean that we can't make money in the process.
Rabbi Lapin: "Let's make bricks!"
Stephan Kinsella: "Say you and I both want to make a German chocolate cake."

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yessir replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:52 PM

 Classic leftist arguments.

1. Ignore the question and insult

2. Ignore production only focus on distribution

I would like to ask you one more time:

1. Outline the logical steps by which private property results in massive inequalities of wealth

2. Inequality of wealth results in poverty for the masses

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All very irrelevant. The studies were done by per capita wealth.

May I ask what your definition of "per capita wealth" is exactly?

No, the economy is not zero-sum, but that doesn't change anything.

Ok, so you say the economy is not zero-sum, but your comparison of money with sandwiches shows that you hold exactly that view... while at the same time focusing only on the nominal value of money, and not the actual value of money.

Also, as a side note, you may have stumbled into why sandwiches are not good as a medium of exchange. :D

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Drace replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:57 PM

Wealth = assets - liabilities

I don't see how thats subjective.

Do slaves own their bodies?

My argument was that private property was not that basis of all morals and that it could not be considered a natural right. So I don't see what your quesiton has to do with this.

Did kings/landlords/nobles homestead all of the land under "their rule"?

No, and Im not sure why it matters.

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yessir replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 3:59 PM

 Drace, as an interesting experiment you might try the following:

1. pull up an excel sheet

2. make up 10 imaginary people of 0 - 50 years, pretend everyone makes the same income regardless of age

3. calculate their savings per year (say 10%)

4. calculate the inequality of wealth between the young folks and the older ones, after 30 years of the same income (regardless of age)

5. think

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Drace:
 Jesus, you guys are worse than trying to convince fascists that white power is shit.

Makes sense. After all, we don't fall for logical fallacies.

If you can't see the link between 1% of the population owning 40% of the wealth and poverty, then theres not much I can do.

Hence, us asking you to explain the link. **exhales**

So it seems caring for the state humanity and its troubles is emotional, and thus irrelevant in a political discussion? But of course, if we care for private property, its not emotional. Its a natural right that cannot be argued with.

No, you tu quoque! Btw, you haven't answered the question.

Your a cult.

Prove it.

To paraphrase Marc Faber: We're all doomed, but that doesn't mean that we can't make money in the process.
Rabbi Lapin: "Let's make bricks!"
Stephan Kinsella: "Say you and I both want to make a German chocolate cake."

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Drace replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 4:01 PM
Ok, so you say the economy is not zero-sum, but your comparison of money with sandwiches shows that you hold exactly that view... while at the same time focusing only on the nominal value of money, and not the actual value of money.
Ok lets say 30 sandwiches are created per hour. One percent of the population owns the sandwich factory, while 95% of the population labors for them. The rest of the population is upper class occupations (doctors, lawyers, etc) that make services available to the rest of the workers. After a year, 262 800 sandwiches are made. 40% of it still belongs to the top 1%. While new wealth (sandwiches) is created, it is distributed in-proportionally.
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von Vodka replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 4:02 PM

"If there is 100 sandwitches, and one person owns 40 of them, and the top 5 own 60 of them, and the top 10 own 80%, then I think you can see the problem?"

 

Capitalism, unlike socialism, is not a zero-sum game. If one person has more, it doesn't mean that another has less.

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yessir replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 4:04 PM

Ok lets say 30 sandwiches are created per hour. One percent of the population owns the sandwich factory, while 95% of the population labors for them. The rest of the population is upper class occupations (doctors, lawyers, etc) that make services available to the rest of the workers. After a year, 262 800 sandwiches are made. 40% of it still belongs to the top 1%. While new wealth (sandwiches) is created, it is distributed in-proportionally.

------------
Ok now we are getting somewhere.
Let me ask you how did you get 30 sandwiches per hour, how come society was able to produce 30 and not 40 or 20?
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Drace replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 4:04 PM
The economy is not a zero-sum game, I don't think there is a difference between capitalism and socialism on this. And nontheless, it doesn't matter. There is at any given time, a certain amount of wealth, of which 1% of the population owns 40% of.
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Drace:
Wealth = assets - liabilities
I don't see how thats subjective.
Now, considering that the value of those assets is subjective, how was the wealth per capita determined?

To paraphrase Marc Faber: We're all doomed, but that doesn't mean that we can't make money in the process.
Rabbi Lapin: "Let's make bricks!"
Stephan Kinsella: "Say you and I both want to make a German chocolate cake."

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Drace replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 4:12 PM
Ok now we are getting somewhere. Let me ask you how did you get 30 sandwiches per hour, how come society was able to produce 30 and not 40 or 20?
Work ethic, machinery, labor time, etc? Why does that matter. How is it relevant to trying to justify one percent of the population owning 40% of the wealth?
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Wealth = assets - liabilities

I don't see how thats subjective

That is not the definition of per capita wealth, but that is ok.  Because your problem is right there... again, being fixated on the nominal value of money and saying you don't think it is a zero-sum game while through your examples you are saying it is.

Do you think the poor now are better off than even the top 1%, 3%, 20% of a few centuries ago? (I already gave you the examples of refrigerators, running water, large assortment of food, etc.)

No, and Im not sure why it matters.

It matters because you are trying to say that the position most of us hold on the board is that its ok for kings/landlords/nobles to rule the land, and that we also hold the view that it is ok to hold slaves (I think you are trying to use that example because you think workers = slaves? and that evil capitalists force workers into slavery?).

I am just trying to show you why your questioning is wrong, by making you answer the question in the way most of us think about it.

You ask: "Is it ok to own slaves?"   -> "Do slaves own their bodies?" -> "Yes" -> "Then it is not ok to own slaves"

You ask: "Kings/landlords/nobles own all the land?" -> "Did they homestead all of that land?" -> "No" -> "Thus they do not own all the land"

Also, if you are not sure why it matters, then what exactly was your reasoning for posing those questions in the first place?

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yessir replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 4:38 PM

 
Work ethic, machinery, labor time, etc? Why does that matter. How is it relevant to trying to justify one percent of the population owning 40% of the wealth?

---------

Drace, what kind of economics have you studied? How do you think people become more productive? How do you think capital gets formed? is it a natural process that will occur regardless of which economic system exists?

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Mike replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 4:58 PM

Drace,

 

I would say that most capitalist care about the poor and don’t love inequality. we have come to believe (most I assume through honest thought and study) that private property creates the most for the most people. that someone has a jet and a yacht, while others fly commercial and has a row boat is better than what has been shown to be the alternative in socialist experiments. I hope you do not believe that it is better for everyone to be equal and have just subsistence – as opposed to the yacht/rowboat. Normal 0 MicrosoftInternetExplorer4

 
I remember vaguely a survey done- people were asked if they would rather have $100,000 but everyone else was given $200,000 or have $50,00 but everyone else was given just 25,000. I don’t remember the exact results but I was shocked at what a large percentage of people would take the lesser amount so that others could not have more than them.

Be responsible, ease suffering; spay or neuter your pets.

We must get them to understand that government solutions are the problem!

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@Mike,

If those number for the study are true, then that's exactly what you would expect for a rational person to answer. It doesn't have anything to do with "taking the lesser" amount. It has to do with how they would expect prices to react as a result of this income distribution. In the first scenario you make 50% the salary of everyone else, prices would be siginificantly higher relative to your pay, in the other scenario you have twice the income than everyone else meaning you would be relatively wealthy.

You could play with the numbers in the survey to get people to accept any amount of money that had the highest percentage gain over everyone else.

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Mike replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 6:09 PM
I understand what you are saying- regarding the actual worth of the money if EVERYONE was given the money etc. But it was not an economic experiment it was an experiment on envy I believe. I will look for more info and post.

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I don't get this whole leftist humbug about inequality. Who cares if X% of the population owns Y% of total wealth when everyone's living standards increase?

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yessir replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 6:19 PM

 Because when you ask him how living standards increase they say:

Work ethic, machinery, labor time, etc? Why does that matter. How is it relevant to trying to justify one percent of the population owning 40% of the wealth?

 
 

 

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Esuric replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 6:30 PM

"How does no private property imply no exchange?"

What a ridiculous question. I guess it's too much to ask today's socialists to understand the position they're defending. You do understand that communist systems have no exchange, and therefore no markets, right? Where there's exchange, there are markets. When everything is publicly owned, there can be no exchange; there is only distribution (which implies some sort of centralization, by definition).

"How does abolishing the private ownership over the means of productions (the factory, the farms, machinary etc) abolish exchange?"

The means of production include all fixed capital equipment, durable goods, intermediary goods (examples; sugar, tin, rubber, ect), land, ect. Everything but human beings are publicly owned (in theory).

"Did exchange not exist in the USSR?"

Lenin attempted to eliminate all private property and exchange. The result? Millions starved, the cities became ghost towns, and the masses fled into the wilderness in order to hunt wild game. There was a complete systemic collapse. In response, Lenin implemented his "reforms;" that is, he allowed farmers to own some property, keep some of their productions, and engage in heavily regulated exchange. The Soviet state retained control over the heavy industries (steel, railroads, coal, oil, ect), the "commanding heights." Once communism was exposed as an impossible condition, a fraud, it became fascism.

"Without private property, there can be no exchange between private individuals who compose 1% of the population but own all the institutes of life."

Of course. The 1% (government officials) doesn't need to trade, it just takes.

"If we wish to preserve a free society, it is essential that we recognize that the desirability of a particular object is not sufficient justification for the use of coercion."

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chloe732 replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 7:02 PM
yessir: "Ok now we are getting somewhere. Let me ask you how did you get 30 sandwiches per hour, how come society was able to produce 30 and not 40 or 20?"

Drace: "Work ethic, machinery, labor time, etc? Why does that matter. "

It matters.  That you don't think it matters explains why you don't understand how an economy works (capitalism).  From what I can gather, you are not here to learn but to defend socialism, which is fine.  But the question posted by "yessir" is vital, pivotal, to understanding the problem(s) with socialism. 

Drace: "How is it relevant to trying to justify one percent of the population owning 40% of the wealth?"

Who cares what percentage of the population owns what percentage of anything?  If you are concerned with the well being of people, what is needed is unhampered markets and liberty.  This will lead to capital formation, increased productivity, increased division of labor (more opportunties for people with varied skills), rising living standards, etc.  What you are defending will produce exactly the opposite results from  what you are trying to achieve.  We are trying to explain that to you, but you dig in and defend, call us a cult, say we don't care about the well being of people, and so on. 

The truth is, because we DO care about the well being people, we support unhampered markets and sound money because that is the only path to increased living standards in a world of scarcity.  No system will produce utopia.  You think socialism is the right path, we are trying to explain to you why it is not only the wrong path, it is a disastrous path. 

Have you read Pictures of the Socialist Future and Time Will March Back?  You might find these to be "interesting". 

"The market is a process." - Ludwig von Mises, as related by Israel Kirzner.   "Capital formation is a beautiful thing" - Chloe732.

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There is nothing wrong with socialism if it is voluntary. In fact, one of the pillars of society, the family, is organized along socialist principles. Socialism as a way to organize a society is not a great idea on paper, neither in practice. Read Socialism by Ludwig von Mises and you will learn how wrong it is in paper and learn about the history of the USSR or China under Mao and you will learn how bad can be in practice. Socialism, both old and new, can only limit the possibilities of Man to progress.
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chloe732 replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 7:19 PM

Jorge, read your Bio.  Welcome!  Hope to see you contribute to the forum often.

"The market is a process." - Ludwig von Mises, as related by Israel Kirzner.   "Capital formation is a beautiful thing" - Chloe732.

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Ricardo replied on Sun, Apr 18 2010 11:36 PM

"Actually Drace if you read Marx's 1844 Manuscripts, specifically "Private Property and Communism", the period which you would probably call socialism which Marx would call "Dictatorship of the Proletariat" or "Crude Communism" is pretty much what happened in USSR."

I can't exactly agree with this being a former Marxist, but a true "dotp" couldn't last long without being taken over by vultures. It's a pipe dream.

Anyways, thanks for the welcome everyone.

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'"Dictatorship of the prolateriet" does not imply a totatlarian government with the state-ownership over he means of productions. When Marx used the term he was referring to the Roman "dicatura".

What was meant was the "Dictatorship of the prolateriet" as opposed to the "Dictatorship of the bourgeiosie"

Nonetheless, very few socialists will agree that the Soviet Union was a worker's paraside or a working example of socialism.'

 

And using Hegelian ideals, the state is the realization of the species being of human kind. Thus the state is the apex of the worker's actions after it is taken over by them. Thus when the proletariat is 'abolishing' private property, they are using the state to carry it out. Concerning your last comment, they don't agree with it after the fact but many socialists were euphoric over the Soviet Union when it was in its early stages and that is when it was its most destructive. 

'Men do not change, they unmask themselves' - Germaine de Stael

 

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Drace replied on Mon, Apr 19 2010 4:57 PM

Who cares what percentage of the population owns what percentage of anything?  If you are concerned with the well being of people, what is needed is unhampered markets and liberty.  This will lead to capital formation, increased productivity, increased division of labor (more opportunties for people with varied skills), rising living standards, etc.  What you are defending will produce exactly the opposite results from  what you are trying to achieve.  We are trying to explain that to you, but you dig in and defend, call us a cult, say we don't care about the well being of people, and so on.

1% of the population owning the majority of the wealth tells us much about capitalism, that it centralizes wealth into the hands of a few. It creates a centralized power which we call money. Wealth is power, something not compatible with the idealogy of anarchism.

It is also directly contradictory to "raising living standards". Capital accumulation will lead to raise in living standards in any system. However, it is the distrubution of this accumlation that is important. If wealth is created, but the majority of it goes to a few hands, it is no use.

Just how much capital accumlation do you percieve your idea of free market capitalism will create that will relieve the working class of poverty? Will production boost 50x?

But, enough is produced! Enough food exists to feed all the population of the world. Scarcity is not the problem, ill distrubtion of the accumlation of wealth is.

While the economy is not exactly zero-sum it does not completely dispose the ill distribution of wealth of its meaning. Does not such distribution of wealth reveal anything at all about the nature of capitalism? That is is hierarchic and authorative? How 1% of the population owning 40% of the wealth deos not at all clue you about a class system which includes the exploiters and the exploited, I don't know. How you percieve this as fair, I have no clue.

 

And how abolishing the state will magically relieve capitalism of its ills, I have no clue.


Concerning your last comment, they don't agree with it after the fact but many socialists were euphoric over the Soviet Union when it was in its early stages and that is when it was its most destructive.

Like who?

One contrary example is Emma Goldman, who wrote "My Disillusionment in Russia"

 

And in its early ages, it did seem like a genuine prolaterian revolution.

 

"

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Drace, what definition of "capitalism" are you using? And please, just the definition, not what it allegedly leads to.

To paraphrase Marc Faber: We're all doomed, but that doesn't mean that we can't make money in the process.
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