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So I'm feeling a little BI lately.

post #1 of 45
Thread Starter 
Saw an interesting article noting a not unexpected (and I'd say not fully even explained there) but interesting economic phenomenon people are starting to notice within the economic markets.

Quote:
A new form of inflation is increasingly described in the blogosphere. It better explains the pricing paradox Mr. Bernanke has failed to embrace.

It's called "biflation."

Everything you already own -- a house, a car, a stock portfolio -- has rapidly declined in value. Everything you actually need to buy -- food, gasoline, medicine, education -- is going up.

Biflation is apparently what happens when the Fed creates trillions of new dollars out of nothing, but mostly just gives it to the banks.

As several other threads here are attempting to address, we increasingly see paradoxes (or even a paradox of paradoxes for the old timers) out there in the problems and solutions being put forward. There is the real state and the delusional state. Both seem to have existed together for quite a while, and in many cases continue to exist but people seem to be calling for or bringing about change but at the same time the change and solutions don't seem to change or solve much.

Increasingly there are a lot of just really pissed off and demoralized people. Good people, people with whom I might even radically disagree, well intentioned people, but no matter their label, orientation, or persuasion, they are out there and they are pissed. The issue here of course is that this is all getting ready to get a lot worse and it seems like the collective conscious of everyone out there knows it.

As a person out in the real world, away from these forums, when I discuss politics, I often use the metaphor of a doughnut hole to describe current government solutions. It manages to hit everything but what it should actually address. I suspect this would aptly describe many who supported the Obama candidacy but now feel abandoned. Not only did the promised hope and change not occur, it was as if the pure incompetence managed to hit just about everything but what it should address. You're not alone in that feeling.

Several threads around here have hit at the edges of this, and I only claim this hits at the edges as well. I don't claim an answer or solution. I'm noting trends and thinking out loud. The threads seem to be doing the same. They curse the paradoxes. How can we have supported secular dictators? Then we see them toppled and wonder, how can we support (claimed) Democracies that are fundamentalist and seem hell belt on radicalizing people, a region of the world and stripping modern rights away from many in the name of ancient beliefs.

How can we appear to have governments that are unable to provide basic services, yet want to extend what they do offer and when the cost of what they used to provide has gone up ten-fold and the cost of what they want to offer goes up a hundred-fold thus effectively granting us all the right to be bankrupt while possessing the right to a beautiful and entitled life which no one can afford to enforce nor provide. What happens when this finally tips?

The concept of biflation hits on the concept. I've noted in a few times here in discussions about television and phone services. There becomes a high end and a low end and nothing in the middle. You look at the numbers though and at some point, you can see something has to give. Again, I don't claim an answer, just a curiosity about the pattern and how it will resolve.

Some examples.... how can obese really be obese if everyone in society becomes it? How do you declare abnormal the norm? How do you have restaurants that are charging $8 for a combo meal yet selling a dozen $1 meal items that are almost the same thing?

Smartphones and data, we used to see these mark ups to fatten up carrier margins and they were the exception. They were the "super-sizing" of cell plans. Everyone can't do it, just your high value customers. If everyone does it there isn't enough spectrum, the subsidy models don't work and so forth. So we end up with this weird high/low/doughnut hole model again. Straight Talk has $45 unlimited everything smartphone plans with Nokia phones. Virgin is offering $25 a month smartphone plans that offer unlimited texting and data with Android phones for $200 off contract. We are told this won't harm the margins of companies that are charging $100-200 a month for the same plans attached to phones like the iPhone. It doesn't seem possible.

Television programming, free over the air or models like Hulu, Netflix and some other on demand suppliments versus sports programming, hundreds of channels and bills that often start at $100 for a household and go to $200 quite easily with a few add-ons. There doesn't seem to be a middle ground at all, again a big hole.

I saw the Rand thread, and regardless of what you think about her, the premise of her beliefs, which is that given a choice between having everything but spending your days enslaved to the desires of others, or having nothing but living on your own terms, still rings true. But as others note it can be a paradox as well for wouldn't you want certain things and some less harsh terms with which to engage others? Of course but the point is given that choice, this is what you would choose, it doesn't have to be that choice of course. Or does it?

What is causing this progression whereby the real answer never arrives? Why is the choice a dictator or dogma to be enslaved to? Why can't we build bridges, roads or buildings as we used to do? Why does wanting a police or cop entail paying him 20% more than he made a generation ago and retiring at 50 with a lifetime full pension and the only other choice is supposedly nothing? Inflation and deflation are both here. Lay-offs and hiring are both happening at the same time, in the same places often from the same companies or agencies. The left hand truly does not know what the right is doing and both manage, worse than every before to completely avoid a solution.

Some sharing and curious anecdotes, I've been busy doing another show. I enjoyed it. I've also finished another couple classes toward the master's degree and I'll have that by summer. The wife and kids are all well as is life, finances, and most other variables you can ponder about. I've not posted simply because regardless of what people claim, I always go through periods where I post a lot and then don't.

Things as I noted are actually quite good for me, but very worrisome for many people I know. These are people who often had too much credit and too little income. Some have managed to unbury themselves through some fiscal discipline that is now slipping. Others threw in the towel and gave up the goodies (aka gave back the house, cars and some other things to their respective banks, etc.) yet are now falling right back into the same habits of pining for and attempting to buy what they cannot afford.

A curious case of doughnut hole has occurred at my work. We've laid off several people and the classroom ratios are much higher than they were yet when I saw the staff photo this year, it had more people than prior years. All the new hires are personal aides for the ever growing number of kids who's parents claim disabilities for them that demand an adult be there supervising aka babysitting their child all day long. So the school as a whole has more adults here then ever before but those jobs help fewer kids than ever before. The kids being helped declare themselves lifelong dependents, their parents claiming forms of ADD/ADHD/Autism and other illnesses causing them to basically exist within the mainstream but needing massive resources to attempt to access it.

These are strange times. Broke and obese families needing food stamps while renting their former homes back while still filling them with flat screens and hundreds of dollars of entertainment programming. Larger numbers of "disabled" kids re-employing many new people in similar jobs to what they had before, but before they could help a class and now they can only help one kid who can't focus, or screams the occasional profanity. There is no low end or medium end. Every phone is a smartphone, every television is a 50 inch flat screen, every car and energy source will be green and expensive, even at 400% of the market cost for 10% efficiency gain but it will subsidized until it is cheap and plentiful. All medical care will be affordable. The curve bends down for all these items somewhere down a timeline where we can't see but if we are right we have utopia and if we are wrong we will be bankrupt but who cares about that because the planet will be a hollow burned up husk if we don't pursue the demanded path anyway. There's no money in anything but the high end so produce that and lobby for loans, grants and assistance for all who can't jump there or bailouts so the crony capitalism can continue.

All or nothing, feeling bi but do or die, the doughnut hole will solve all if we just believe and jump!

It is like life is a giant parody of the dot.com business plans. Only now all of life is that bubble and that delusion.

1. Do something. 2. ???? 3. Profit!!"?

Do something...health care.
Do something...energy.
Do something...in all sectors and all markets.

2. ????

That is the doughnut hole only this time it isn't pets.com or some stock bubble that is going to crash. It is a life bubble or a world bubble or something else.

How do we get people to realize that regardless of good intentions and we need to define step two for life?

Also what prevents us from realizing this as a society? For these I've been pondering a bit about the illusion of choice and freedom. There's a lot of philosophy hitting this but also a lot of surprising economic research as well. People used to talk about the 80/20 rule and one of favorite companies appears to have taken it even further, the whereby the can take 80 percent of the profits from 3% of the market. What happens when 100% tries to be the 3%? What happens when you need more than two or three choices but people can't follow that, or won't or will follow those who claim there are only two or three choices, etc.

A number of brief articles and bad studies have been created that appear to show those who are more engaged in things like politics are more informed but also more misinformed. You more fully engage a process, and you more fully absorb the biases of that process. You end up with a media that doesn't see it's own bias. More people getting their news and misinformation from radio and television talk show hosts and comedians. More informed and misinformed end up together, another doughnut hole.

Does it have to be this chasm? Can't it be something other than all or nothing? There's got to be a real step two out there somewhere. We can't go from the $8 to the dollar menu back to the $8 meal and have everyone obese but with larger labels to inform us to choose wisely yet still unable to think or consider other choices.

Thoughts welcome....

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #2 of 45
Reading the title, I thought you were finally starting to come out of the closet. :P

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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post #3 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

Reading the title, I thought you were finally starting to come out of the closet. :P

I'm glad I wasn't the only one!

He must have learned that from CNN and FoxNews ... attention grabbing headline, followed by unrelated article.

He wrote an interesting piece though ... everybody wants the "problem" fixed, but nobody wants to sacrifice anything to fix it.
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
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From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
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post #4 of 45
I'll have my taxes go up. No problem there. But my taxes won't really make much of a dent and the money I divert to taxes just won't be spent elsewhere in the economy.

Republicans and many rich people just seem to have this disconnect between the quality of life of the average person and that of their own lives. Rich people really wouldn't be sacrificing much, if at all, by paying more taxes. How anyone can live in a mansion on a many-acre estate while others have their houses foreclosed because the father got cancer is completely beyond my comprehension. How can we, as humans, have so little disregard for the health and well-being of our brothers and sisters?

And eventually the people say they've had enough corruption and income inequality...when those that take advantage of and abuse the less fortunate get off unpunished, it sets a pretty nasty precedent. Those responsible for the financial crisis--those who packaged absolutely shit loans and passed them off as AAA safe securities...yeah, they should be the ones in prison--NOT the mom who sells $31 worth of pot who now has a 10 year prison term.

http://www.newsok.com/oklahoma-watch...ad_story_title

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply
post #5 of 45
And speaking of sacrifices...

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply
post #6 of 45
Just stop trade with China. That should fix the problem real quick. But if that isn't happening, I don't see how the brainwashed masses will stop leading their lives on credit.
Most of us employ the Internet not to seek the best information, but rather to select information that confirms our prejudices. - Nicholas D. Kristof
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Most of us employ the Internet not to seek the best information, but rather to select information that confirms our prejudices. - Nicholas D. Kristof
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post #7 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by talksense101 View Post

Just stop trade with China. That should fix the problem real quick.

Huh?


Quote:
Originally Posted by talksense101 View Post

But if that isn't happening, I don't see how the brainwashed masses will stop leading their lives on credit.

Well, perhaps they're simply following their government's lead: Borrow and spend your way to prosperity.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #8 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

I'll have my taxes go up. No problem there. But my taxes won't really make much of a dent and the money I divert to taxes just won't be spent elsewhere in the economy.

Republicans and many rich people just seem to have this disconnect between the quality of life of the average person and that of their own lives. Rich people really wouldn't be sacrificing much, if at all, by paying more taxes. How anyone can live in a mansion on a many-acre estate while others have their houses foreclosed because the father got cancer is completely beyond my comprehension. How can we, as humans, have so little disregard for the health and well-being of our brothers and sisters?

And eventually the people say they've had enough corruption and income inequality...when those that take advantage of and abuse the less fortunate get off unpunished, it sets a pretty nasty precedent. Those responsible for the financial crisis--those who packaged absolutely shit loans and passed them off as AAA safe securities...yeah, they should be the ones in prison--NOT the mom who sells $31 worth of pot who now has a 10 year prison term.

http://www.newsok.com/oklahoma-watch...ad_story_title

You just can't let it go..the notion of soaking the rich. Republicans and many rich people? That doesn't even make sense. Who is the average person? You cannot comprehend that some people are rich are some are not? Where is it written that we need income equality?
I can only please one person per day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look good either.  
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I can only please one person per day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look good either.  
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post #9 of 45
So asking for a 5 or 10% increase in the top income brackets and new tax brackets above 1 million, 10 million, 100 million, and 1 billion scaling up to maybe 50% (while closing the loophole on capital gains in lieu of traditional salary) is suddenly going to make everyone have equal amounts of money. Clearly. You're the one who is looking at this situation as black and white. Raising taxes on the rich to levels somewhere in between Clinton and Carter (and still well below Eisenhower) does not suddenly "soak the rich" nor does it magically make us all have equal amounts of money. Why can't you comprehend that there exists many, many stages between what we have now and the crazy total Communism you are incredibly afraid of (AND OF WHICH I AM NOT SEEKING ANYWAY)?

And frankly, the poor and working classes have been soaked for the last 30 years. We haven't seen this trickle down yet. All we've seen is the income gap grow steadily wider. All we've seen is Wall Street recover without the jobs coming back (note, that's the fault of the greedy corporations who figured they can work the same scared workers harder and longer for less pay). All we've seen are pensions destroyed by abhorrent, illegal actions while nobody goes to prison for it (except Madoff, who really wasn't the big player in the least in the whole financial crisis anyway).

Reagan dropped the income taxes and raised the payroll taxes. That started the fleecing of the poor and working class right there. Trickle down has had 30 YEARS to work. It hasn't. Time to give up on that.

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply
post #10 of 45
Not a bad thread Trump. It touches on a host of things which all seem to be part of the big picture which I suspect most people are noticing today.

My stab at responding to this that you raise for topic goes something like this:

Our faults, problems, dilemmas, paradoxes and yes our crisis management stems from one simple overriding root cause. (( Greed / Sense of Entitlement ))

Now the thing is as I see it is basically that this greed can be seen with the "Rich" CEO as well as the "average" "middle class" civil servants who via a union somehow secure pretty decent pay, benefits, and pensions. Greed is evident and it is spread broadly.

Sense of entitlement is also evident. Everyone wants to live a certain lifestyle that marketing sells them yet nobody wants to pay the bill for it. Forgotten or simply ignored are the notions of living below ones means and saving for hard times. This is true and evident at the household level as well as the municipal level, state level and federal level of government. I for one can report that when my last roughly 10 year old dated rear projection television bit the bullet last year I did not run out and buy a new 50+ inch LED television. I am watching something around a 30 inch cathode ray tube Panasonic television built in 1996 which was in our bedroom. I don't have HD subscription channel package. Which of course would be silly with this TV. I never did even with the former HD capable television. I refuse to pay for it at the rates it goes at. I don't have a smart phone and I don't text. I have a simple Sony Ericson phone which is great for voice calls. I don't have an ipad or any latest gadget like an ipod or such.

So as I started with Greed / Sense of Entitlement is the root of our troubles as a society.

After this we see the following issues:

-Predator style business practices.
-Lack of proper common sense regulation of Banking regarding things like what a bank should have on hand as a ratio of what it lends.
-Consumers who live beyond their means spending money they don't have.
-Society idolizes certain celebrities and then many of the masses want to walk and talk like (fill in the blank) celebrity. Be it Lady Gaga or whoever.
-Politicians at the federal level seemingly unwilling, unable to address our budget deficits and cumulative debt problem / crisis.
-People develop a kind of screw everyone else / it's all about me attitude. (individual level)
-Wars to "secure" America's "Interests" etc. (national level)

What we don't see as much of and what we need to see more of is.

-Service to others
-Living below ones means
-Government which is limited and does not exceed its budget.
-Enjoying things in life which are free like playing with your children in the back yard on a sunny day as opposed to thinking you have to spend money in order to enjoy life.
-Go to Church on Sunday and I am not talking about a shallow church where they try to give you a "Country Club of goodies" rather one that teaches God's Word.
-Love your wife or husband if married.
-Enjoy your children if you have them.
-Enjoy nature, a beautiful day etc. Grow a garden of fruits and vegetables.
-Share your fruits with others. What ever form this "fruit" may be. Many people need an advocate, a friend, an encourager.. somebody positive in their life.

Be for something good.

Don't be selfish in the Ayn Rand sense be you a "self-made" person or a union member.

Selfishness in any form is less than optimal and I can promise you this is a fact.

Don't expect entitlement either.

Be a giver and bless others.

We get what we give. NOT WHAT WE DEMAND OR TAKE.

So Give and Give with a generous heart.

Electronic gadgets and materialism are no match for real joyous living. Not all life is a joy either as BR mentions when someone gets cancer and a home is foreclosed. This fact lends more credit to my argument for serving your fellow man. Do it directly. We all are neighbors and we all need to love our neighbor.

When we focus on giving we are victors. When we focus on what we want we are reduced to very substandard shadows of who we were created to fully be.

Fellowship
May the peace of the Lord be with you always

Share your smile, Have respect for others, and be loving to all peoples

Paul in Athens: Acts 17 : 16-34
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May the peace of the Lord be with you always

Share your smile, Have respect for others, and be loving to all peoples

Paul in Athens: Acts 17 : 16-34
Reply
post #11 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

How can we, as humans, have so little disregard for the health and well-being of our brothers and sisters?

Its because we are essentially evolved from apes - whose consciousness is broadly autonomous, based around simple needs to survive and reproduce. At best, primitive tribal altruism develops, which is just a hedge bet for greater personal gain.

Very few humans develop mentally past this stage, after all, we are animals too, with a genetic mutation some years ago that caused our brains to grow for longer - so why should we be different. Thats why we bat for our team, wave our little flags, fear teh muzzlimz and praise the lowered.
post #12 of 45

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
Reply
post #13 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post


And? So?

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #14 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

You just can't let it go..the notion of soaking the rich.

You just don't get it. The rich have a hell of a lot that they can still afford to give without even coming close to getting "soaked". The poor and middle class, not so much.

I'm not blaming the rich, or punishing them. I'm just stating a fact. When you can afford to give, you should give. When you can't afford to give, you shouldn't.
post #15 of 45
Most of those in the bottom bracket are not willing to work hard enough to move up to a wealthier bracket.
They WANT to be wealthier, but they want it given to them, they don't want to earn it.

(Based merely on several decades of personal observation and experience.)
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
post #16 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

You just don't get it. The rich have a hell of a lot that they can still afford to give without even coming close to getting "soaked". The poor and middle class, not so much.

I'm not blaming the rich, or punishing them. I'm just stating a fact. When you can afford to give, you should give. When you can't afford to give, you shouldn't.

And when they don't give voluntarily...just go take it from them.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #17 of 45
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR View Post

Reading the title, I thought you were finally starting to come out of the closet. :P

There are many types of closets. Which one would you prefer I come out of?

Quote:
Originally Posted by KingOfSomewhereHot View Post

I'm glad I wasn't the only one!

He must have learned that from CNN and FoxNews ... attention grabbing headline, followed by unrelated article.

He wrote an interesting piece though ... everybody wants the "problem" fixed, but nobody wants to sacrifice anything to fix it.

It goes beyond that though, even when we "fix" the problem it becomes the solutions are absurd and manage to hit everything but the problem itself.

We live in the age of the internet, global commerce and trade. We are also having problems with immigration. I propose as a solution... a high speed train to carry people around. It becomes like.. WTF? but for everything.

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #18 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

And? So?

I am a pretty big fan of free markets and this imbalance concerns me as it should concern most of us.

I saw a banner ad the other day and it had a quote which I thought was interesting and likely very accurate.

It said:

The American Dream can't be Made in China.

The American Dream is also doomed when we see imbalances of wealth such as this graph BR posted indicates.

We need to be for something. For a mostly and broadly middle class economy. We can all be against something but until we figure out what we are for we are being affected as opposed to affecting our surroundings.

Fellowship
May the peace of the Lord be with you always

Share your smile, Have respect for others, and be loving to all peoples

Paul in Athens: Acts 17 : 16-34
Reply
May the peace of the Lord be with you always

Share your smile, Have respect for others, and be loving to all peoples

Paul in Athens: Acts 17 : 16-34
Reply
post #19 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fellowship View Post

I am a pretty big fan of free markets and this imbalance concerns me as it should concern most of us.

Why?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Fellowship View Post

I saw a banner ad the other day and it had a quote which I thought was interesting and likely very accurate.

It said:

The American Dream can't be Made in China.

Cute. Sounds like wisdom. Isn't really though.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Fellowship View Post

The American Dream is also doomed when we see imbalances of wealth such as this graph BR posted indicates.

Why?

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #20 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fellowship View Post

I am a pretty big fan of free markets and this imbalance concerns me as it should concern most of us.

I saw a banner ad the other day and it had a quote which I thought was interesting and likely very accurate.

It said:

The American Dream can't be Made in China.

The American Dream is also doomed when we see imbalances of wealth such as this graph BR posted indicates.

I have a question, which I think was the underlying question MJ1970 had but did not follow through on. Note that there are assumptions made in my following questions that should be obvious. If you are a fan of free markets, and if a free market is what created the imbalance, how would this be rectified in the context of a free market? OR would you have to remove the free market aspect to correct it?

I also want to further state that I believe the American Dream, being a concept, cannot fall in line with a Christian view. The American Dream is entirely too focused on self and not focused enough on others to be a compatible view. Also, since the "American Dream" is more of a concept and not a product what does it matter where one feels it is being provided from? So it does not matter where the "American Dream" is "made" from what I can see. However, I do believe a better problem is American Jobs cannot be made in China.

Quote:
We need to be for something. For a mostly and broadly middle class economy. We can all be against something but until we figure out what we are for we are being affected as opposed to affecting our surroundings.

Fellowship

I agree in a basic sense. Being for something requires a person to make a stand and defend that thing. Which can be an uncomfortable position to be in. Not many are willing to leave their comfort zones for long though.
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
Reply
post #21 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

You just don't get it. The rich have a hell of a lot that they can still afford to give without even coming close to getting "soaked". The poor and middle class, not so much.

I'm not blaming the rich, or punishing them. I'm just stating a fact. When you can afford to give, you should give. When you can't afford to give, you shouldn't.

Is this simply because it is the fair thing to do?

Actually with that last statement, I would make a small adjustment. You should always be willing to give, no matter what. However taxes are not about willingness, or giving, they are about your money being taken by the government. Not the same thing as giving. I am unwilling to pay taxes for certain things, but I do anyhow. It is not a real choice, more of a either pay or risk penalties and/or prison.
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
Reply
post #22 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fellowship View Post

I am a pretty big fan of free markets and this imbalance concerns me as it should concern most of us.

I saw a banner ad the other day and it had a quote which I thought was interesting and likely very accurate.

It said:

The American Dream can't be Made in China.

The American Dream is also doomed when we see imbalances of wealth such as this graph BR posted indicates.

We need to be for something. For a mostly and broadly middle class economy. We can all be against something but until we figure out what we are for we are being affected as opposed to affecting our surroundings.

Fellowship

Recall - Think carefully.

What is going on in the world - is HOW the target population of 1 billion is going to be reached.
post #23 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by marcUK View Post

Recall - Think carefully.

What is going on in the world - is HOW the target population of 1 billion is going to be reached.

A target world population of 1 billion? Is that your hope or desire?

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #24 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by marcUK™ View Post

Recall - Think carefully.

What is going on in the world - is HOW the target population of 1 billion is going to be reached.

Who set a Target World Population of 1 Billion?

Are you talking about a target Market of 1 Billion in pure business terms for the sale of goods into China?
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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post #25 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

A target world population of 1 billion? Is that your hope or desire?

That would only require killing off 85 percent of the present population ... piece of cake!
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
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From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
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post #26 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

A target world population of 1 billion? Is that your hope or desire?

Quote:
Originally Posted by NoahJ View Post

Who set a Target World Population of 1 Billion?

Are you talking about a target Market of 1 Billion in pure business terms for the sale of goods into China?

A few years ago, after much thought, I came to the conclusion that an optimum world population would be about a billion people. Fellowship then produced a link to a video that said the same thing. I do not know what this video was, maybe he can tell you.

Ill be honest, I would like to see the world population bought down (peacefully, painlessly, and progressively I might add) to a sustainable level - if that was 1 billion then so be it.
post #27 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by marcUK View Post

A few years ago, after much thought, I came to the conclusion that an optimum world population would be about a billion people. Fellowship then produced a link to a video that said the same thing. I do not know what this video was, maybe he can tell you.

Ill be honest, I would like to see the world population bought down (peacefully, painlessly, and progressively I might add) to a sustainable level - if that was 1 billion then so be it.



Can we start the population reduction with people who desire population reduction?

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #28 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post



Can we start the population reduction with people who desire population reduction?

perhaps we need not to have the knee-jerk reaction....I make no mention, wish, desires of killing etc. (unless its wingers - semi-joke)

The planet can only reastically support a few billion at most. Not the 7-8 billion we have, who are increasingly using more and more resources per person as developing countries develop.

This is a fact, its brutal, and needs to be looked at with sober eyes. If you wish to start scoring points over my honesty....get a grip.

Managed population reduction, is far more humane than catastrophic civilization failure imo.
post #29 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by marcUK View Post

The planet can only reastically support a few billion at most. Not the 7-8 billion we have, who are increasingly using more and more resources per person as developing countries develop.

This is a fact, its brutal, and needs to be looked at with sober eyes. If you wish to start scoring points over my honesty....get a grip.

Paging Mr. Malthus, please pickup a white courtesy phone.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #30 of 45
OK then... HOW do you reduce the population ?

And don't just tell me "birth control" ... that's been around for several generations and hasn't proven effective (at a macro-level).

Too many people on this planet are still so superstitious they believe they have a divine mandate to "go forth and multiply" ... how do you get them to stop?... how do you get third-world countries to stop?...
The list goes on and on ... are we to condone UN sanctioned murder in the name of population control ???

Saying we need to reduce the population is easy ... why don't you throw out some ideas to accomplish this?

(It's a lot like the politicians saying "we need to reduce the deficit!", but they never actually say HOW they intend to do it.)
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
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post #31 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoahJ View Post

Is this simply because it is the fair thing to do?

It's not about fairness. It's about capability. A family of four subsisting on $20,000 a year cannot afford to give $5000 to help the next generation get an education, and still put food on the table and have a roof over their heads. A tycoon earning 20 million can EASILY afford to give 5 million if they make adjustments, and I bet they can still afford the Rolls and the Apartment on Park Ave.
post #32 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

It's not about fairness. It's about capability. A family of four subsisting on $20,000 a year cannot afford to give $5000 to help the next generation get an education, and still put food on the table and have a roof over their heads. A tycoon earning 20 million can EASILY afford to give 5 million if they make adjustments, and I bet they can still afford the Rolls and the Apartment on Park Ave.

And if they don't give it voluntarily, just go and take it from them.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #33 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingOfSomewhereHot View Post

OK then... HOW do you reduce the population ?

And don't just tell me "birth control" ... that's been around for several generations and hasn't proven effective (at a macro-level).

Too many people on this planet are still so superstitious they believe they have a divine mandate to "go forth and multiply" ... how do you get them to stop?... how do you get third-world countries to stop?...

The list goes on and on ... are we to condone UN sanctioned murder in the name of population control ???

Saying we need to reduce the population is easy ... why don't you throw out some ideas to accomplish this?

(It's a lot like the politicians saying "we need to reduce the deficit!", but they never actually say HOW they intend to do it.)

Not that I agree with the presupposition that the planet cannot support the current (or larger) population (this has been claimed so many time before and turned out to be wrong it's not even a good joke anymore...sorta like the leftist environmentalist's equivalent of Henny Youngman's "Take my wife. Please." joke...you expect it...you chuckle out of politeness but you know it's really not that funny), but...

If you want to reduce population growth rates...increase wealth. There appears to be a fairly strong correlation that as a population's wealth increases, it's growth rate moderates (not to zero or negative mind you) but it moderates. And there appears to be a causal relationship that goes like: greater material wealth -> lower population growth rate.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #34 of 45
The government does not steal anything. Tge government requires payment for services rendered. You don't like the services you're paying for? Vote for change (and hope you get it and if you don't, vote again the next time) or find a government that better suits you. You can't expect your government to work for YOU and ignore the fact that it also has the responsibility to work for (and you have the responsibility to support the welfare of) the other millions of citizens who share this society with you.

Don't want to share? Then get out. Find something better. Buy an island and make your own government. Knock yourself out.
post #35 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

The government does not steal anything. Tge government requires payment for services rendered.

Uh huh.


Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

You can't expect your government to work for YOU...

I don't expect that actually.


Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

Don't want to share? Then get out. Find something better. Buy an island and make your own government. Knock yourself out.

The statist equivalent of "America love it or leave it!"

Or stay and try to educate people who actually believe that taxation isn't theft and that government isn't force and a mechanism for the abridgment of your natural rights...and try to change the culture, society and educational level that way.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #36 of 45
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

Huh?

Well, perhaps they're simply following their government's lead: Borrow and spend your way to prosperity.

ZING!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

You just don't get it. The rich have a hell of a lot that they can still afford to give without even coming close to getting "soaked". The poor and middle class, not so much.

I'm not blaming the rich, or punishing them. I'm just stating a fact. When you can afford to give, you should give. When you can't afford to give, you shouldn't.

Perhaps you should also investigate the variables that make some unable to give and hold them accountable for it. Income and networth are STRONGLY related to intact marriages, two parent households, level of education, number of hours worked, savings rate, etc.

In essence you declare we should punish those who manage to engage in those traits and reward those who don't. It also leads to absurdity, like Social Security Disability and parents who are coaching their kids to act out to claim benefits.

Speaking of a giant doughnut hole though we have attempts at clean energy being sued out of existence in California. People might ask why not simply use other land but the state and federal government already has classified over 55% of the state as federal and state parks.

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #37 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by marcUK View Post

A few years ago, after much thought, I came to the conclusion that an optimum world population would be about a billion people. Fellowship then produced a link to a video that said the same thing. I do not know what this video was, maybe he can tell you.

Ill be honest, I would like to see the world population bought down (peacefully, painlessly, and progressively I might add) to a sustainable level - if that was 1 billion then so be it.

Not gonna bite.
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
Reply
post #38 of 45
[QUOTE=NoahJ;1814782]I have a question, which I think was the underlying question MJ1970 had but did not follow through on. Note that there are assumptions made in my following questions that should be obvious. If you are a fan of free markets, and if a free market is what created the imbalance, how would this be rectified in the context of a free market? OR would you have to remove the free market aspect to correct it?[quote]

I don't believe we will turn this around. We abused free markets to offshore everything we buy to slave labor camps across the ocean. I think morality is the ingredient missing from the collective whole of our society in America which buys all the slave made goods. I don't have any confidence in our political ability to achieve a correction politically as to turn this around. When we buy slave made items we are sowing seeds of destruction.
Quote:
I also want to further state that I believe the American Dream, being a concept, cannot fall in line with a Christian view. The American Dream is entirely too focused on self and not focused enough on others to be a compatible view. Also, since the "American Dream" is more of a concept and not a product what does it matter where one feels it is being provided from? So it does not matter where the "American Dream" is "made" from what I can see. However, I do believe a better problem is American Jobs cannot be made in China.

I think where we went wrong in American society was when we went from giving value to work instead to only giving value to investment and return on investment.

The fact of the matter however is that we do need to produce things.

Fellowship

Quote:
I agree in a basic sense. Being for something requires a person to make a stand and defend that thing. Which can be an uncomfortable position to be in. Not many are willing to leave their comfort zones for long though.
May the peace of the Lord be with you always

Share your smile, Have respect for others, and be loving to all peoples

Paul in Athens: Acts 17 : 16-34
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May the peace of the Lord be with you always

Share your smile, Have respect for others, and be loving to all peoples

Paul in Athens: Acts 17 : 16-34
Reply
post #39 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoahJ View Post

Not gonna bite.

no teeth? no backbone? perhaps you're just a bottom dwelling sucker?

Why is there a problem with admitting there are not enough resources to support 8 billion people?
post #40 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by trumptman View Post

1. Do something. 2. ???? 3. Profit!!"?

Do something...health care.
Do something...energy.
Do something...in all sectors and all markets.

2. ????

I'm not sure what you intended by this trumpt, but "do something" by itself is incomplete. Expecting governments "do something" usually fails to acknowledge government's inability to do much other than to enslave men in one way or another.

In an individual sense, "do something that you love" is better, but it's not quite complete. I believe the passion to do something you love is innate in all men. You ought not to be punished for doing something you love though, presuming of course it doesn't harm others. Doing something you love requires freedom, and if there's any proper role for government toward that goal, it's to protect that environment from all that threatens it. The obvious threat is government itself - see the last paragraph.

I wasn't affected much by the Great Depression (the other one) but somewhere along the line I developed an aversion to waste. Most engineers share this desire, but it was this instinct that caused me to constantly seek ways to reduce waste. I can't explain it, it's just how I'm built. Others are drawn to art, or medicine, or architecture

Shortly after I entered the business world, I designed a way to improve the manufacturing efficiency for a common product. I didn't invent the product, but its manufacture seemed needlessly inefficient to me. To this day I don't know why no one else envisioned this, but I designed and built a manufacturing process that increased the product's manufacturing speed while reducing its cost by a very large margin.

This is a product that just about every American uses - men, women, and children, from infants to geriatrics. I'm nearly 100% certain you've used them and will continue to, well into the future. No, I won't tell you what it is (it's not a motor that runs on atmospheric charge or anything) but it's commonly found throughout the civilized world. Its name is literally a household word.

Despite what a lot of libtards would rather believe, I didn't do this out of some sense of greed. I did it out of a desire to reduce the needless waste and inefficiencies I saw, nothing more. I didn't expect to make a lot of money from the idea, but I did. Quite a bit of money in fact. I was honored with nice awards and plaques and dinners too, which I would rather have avoided.

From that success, I refined the process to reduce inefficiencies even more. I proposed my idea to one manufacturer, with a promise to reduce their manufacturing waste by an additional five percent or so. This would realize millions of dollars in savings for the company, its employees, and its stockholders, every year. The savings could also be passed on to the consumer in the form of even less cost for this modest product, should they decide to do so (they did).

When the board asked me how much this would cost them, I gave them a modest figure - again I was surprised no one else thought of this idea, and I didn't think it worth that much. Their response? They literally laughed at me, thinking that - in the zero-sum mindset so common among consensus-makers - that it was impossible to realize such large savings for such a modest investment. They signed a contract almost immediately, and this time I included a percentage of the savings should they ever become realized. I considered it a self-imposed incentive.

Of course I delivered, and having begun with a conservative estimate, I exceeded my proposed efficiency goals by a significant amount. The company saved $7M its first year, but incredibly - they didn't think it would continue. As I knew it would, it has, every year, for decades. My compensation had been a percentage of that.

The checks came in every two weeks, and it's then that I became introduced to the concept of quarterly income taxes. Every three months I had to write a check to various local, state and federal agencies for many thousands. Why? That's the law.

Needless to say I since became disinclined to continue similar waste-reduction efforts. However, I invested in other companies - Apple, most recently - that have been successful too, rewarding other investors, delivering great products, and who also pay enormous taxes on their success. When I sell, which has been very seldom, I pay taxes on having taken that risk. Why? That's the law. At least I can control what I sell.

Have I been greedy? You tell me. I really don't care though. Some will doubtlessly think I ought to be forced to sign a Directive 10-289 or something Forget it.

My point is that the prevailing "punish success" mindset has been detrimental to society. It limits access to the kind of modest success that created the middle class in the first place. What's needed is less intrusion and fewer limitations on free men and free markets. If "wealthy" people have only become more so, the problem is not that there are too many of us; the problem is that there are too few. Society ought to seek to enable more wealth creation. The opposite environment prevails when economic policy seeks to punish success.

I'm not unique. I know others who have found similar opportunities and who became very successful also. One of my contemporaries found a cheap way to manufacture typewriter balls - remember them? Another likes to create art. Both became quite wealthy, and contributed mightily to local employment and civic works. There are plenty others. None of them were ever motivated solely by greed. None ever set about doing what they do solely to make a lot of money. They had brilliant ideas and were motivated to act upon them, if only to see their dreams reach fruition. In fact, everyone I know who did something purely out of a desire to make lots of money has been a dismal failure. Without exception. Most of them are attorneys.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fellowship View Post

We get what we give. NOT WHAT WE DEMAND OR TAKE.

You're almost correct Fellowship. I believe you get more than what you give. Much more. Since I began earning money by tossing newspapers for $7 a week, I never demanded a thing of anyone. No one ever gave me a nickel I didn't earn. Yet government at all levels seems to consistently demand and take more and more of me, and no matter how much is taken, it's never enough. I've probably paid more in taxes than most people will earn in their entire lives. Have I received a commensurate amount in benefits? Certainly not. Who's being greedy here?

You are evidently a Christian, and I trust you can appreciate the fact I am the first to acknowledge the gifts of a creative mind and a healthy body. I've often asked myself - have I done my best to honor the gift of life? As much as I've accomplished, I can't honestly say that I have, given the fact I don't appreciate punishment at the hands of government for my success. I've given much to charities that I'm confident will use my gifts effectively, for purposes I deem worthy. I've given much, much more to governments though - at the point of a gun, who have taken the fruits of my mind and my labour, for questionable purposes at best, and outright immoral ones at worst.

How many more people's desires are thwarted by such punishment? I submit there are many. Who knows how many ideas could sprout from similarly-minded men and women, if not for the countless obstacles placed in the way of success? Capitalism is not synonymous with greed. Capitalism describes the environment by which men like me can pursue their dreams, and simply enjoy the freedom to succeed or fail on their own merits. What they do with their success is their business, and theirs alone. Capitalism is the freedom to be left alone. It's the only economic model consistent with individual freedom.

Bear in mind true capitalism and "free markets" are terms to describe an economic environment that has not (legally) existed, anywhere on Earth, for at least 100 years. This has not been mankind's finest era.

Matthew 26:11, Fellowship: "You will always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me."
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