Originally Posted by tonton
The point being made here, that's been completely missed, is that the fines are excessive for a college student or someone on minimum wage, but they are simply a nuisance for the rich. Therefore, the rich are being neither punished nor deterred.
This is a rather large and unproven assumption on your part. The reality is quite different because most millionaires are not ostentatious about their wealth. They simply prefer to invest their money and spend less than they make.
A prime example, speaking of traffic fines, is autos. I read the book The Millionaire Mind
and it almost pains rich folks to have money wasted because they care about money, care about investing it and know the return it would yield. The rich are the ones thinking that the $300 fine would have been $2100 compounded over a lifetime. The poor are the ones thinking they have less money to lay down on the next set of rims or as down payment on the next flashy car.
One thing you'll never fail to find in a poor neighborhood is a rim shop or a stereo shop. One of the key reasons the wealth gap keeps growing is due to credit. Delusional utopians like have kept pushing to make more and more risky credit available for the poor. The claim from the utopians is that the rich can buy things like houses with credit while the poor cannot. The rich might use credit to leverage an investment. The poor though don't even buy investments. They (like you) are completely confused about what an investment happens to be. Thus we get nonsense like the last housing crisis where a bunch or poor and middle class folks (who soon became poor) tried to finance their way to rich by purchasing McMansions that required every last dollar they were earning and thus left them none to invest. The millionaires, they were living in far below their means often in modest homes with small or perhaps no mortgage on the home.
My idea is that parking violations should be hit with wheel clamps. Traffic violations should require a few hours in lockup (well, not lockup, just sitting in a huge "detention hall" with other traffic violators). Make them pay with their time. This would at least cause the rich a greater inconvenience that mailing in 0.001% of their weekly income.
Talk about authoritarian overkill. You are a frightening dude and becoming more so by the day. Oh sorry sir, your parking meter ran out of change. We're going to have to destroy your day by paying a small army to put wheel clamps on all the cars. Great minds like yours are why the TSA is busy molesting grandma.
Originally Posted by sammi jo
Yes. And its not just traffic violations: Fines for other offenses, from petty infractions all the way up to major crimes almost always represent a far more serious , or life-changing punishment for those of (relatively) lesser means...
The issue extends to other areas, such as abortion. If the practice is ever made illegal, the rich can simply fly to Canada or Europe, whereas the option for the rest of us will be the coat hanger brigade, risking ones life, as well as risking a possible jail sentence.
If your reasoning were sound, then poor neighborhoods would be idyllic areas where the meek and cowering poor would be afraid to even break a minor law due to the radical hit they would take to their lifestyle and pocketbook. Why they'd be afraid to even jaywalk. Instead as usual, we see the exact opposite. Poor neighborhoods are full of crime due to fines having little to no effect due to the fact that the poor think little to nothing about money. They simply don't care about money and don't think or worry about it because if they did, they would be saving and investing rather than spending on baubles often financed by credit.
This is what drives the social planners nuts. It is also why "model minorities" rise so quickly while others never do even across generations.
Originally Posted by tonton
It's amazing how many people don't realize that gross wealth accumulation and poverty reduction are often not connected. One only need look at the last 30 years in the US, vs. what's happening in Social Democracies in Europe, to see the truthfulness of this statement.
Once again, wealth accumulation is not the goal.
Social Democracies in Europe are mostly bankrupt to a larger degree than the U.S. Their demographic implosion will be even sharper. The examples folks like yourself keep pointing out that aren't as close to the edge in that capacity are those that pump wealth out of the ground and spend it. Canada and Denmark are great examples of this.