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And yet another free-market theory failure - Page 8

post #281 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

It's almost like they're saying that the key to economic success is constantly moving away from socialism. Constantly. Never stopping. Of course we know what the end point of that is. It starts with an A.

Actually, it's nothing like saying that, because that's something different.

Quote:

If there's anything that Sweden and Canada have proved, it's that at some time in a nation's history, that nation can move WAY towards the socialist side, and still have a more socialist -- and more successful -- end point than the US. Perhaps if the US moved WAY toward the Socialist side, and then moved slightly to the right (but still way left of the starting point), we could see some of that success.

I expect a smilie in return...

I'll comply. You're saying that success is found by first moving way left, then a little to the right...but not too far so we're still left?

OK then.
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post #282 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

Indeed, those cities (and others like Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, D.C.) appear to be a pretty damning indictment of liberal Democratic leadership, management and policies.

I'd add to that that there are a huge number of variables making such comparisons of random anecdotal photos of dubious use. Population is one. Sweden's population is a little higher than the City of New York's, after all.
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post #283 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

I'd add to that that there are a huge number of variables making such comparisons of random anecdotal photos...

No, no no SDW...you don't get it.

We cite a singular number (e.g., the Gini coefficient) and claim it tells us everything we need to know (despite its obvious shortcomings) about "basic standard of living" and then, when that falls flat, we start picking out random pictures with no context that purport to prove what is claimed.

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post #284 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

1. If you leave from time to time, then stop attacking me for doing so. For your info, I am recovering from back surgery.

2. I've always maintained exactly what I posted above re: the financial crisis. I've never blamed only Democrats. I've even stated that the Bush Administration was eager to tout home ownership numbers, as others have done as well.

3. It's not that your link is incorrect, it's that it's not using the right inflation data. Most inflation stats strip out the volatile parts (the parts that actually matter to consumers) like food and energy. It's really a change in how the government calculates inflation. It makes us all feel better, I suppose. Here's a chart showing the differences:

http://dshort.com/inflation/inflatio...n-1872-present

And here is CNBC reporting that inflation is actually about 10%.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/42551209

I knew it would involve another way of looking at the numbers. Who's to say which one is right? This isn't an accurate measure but just from looking at the price of food and such the only thing that's that much out of line is gas and we all know what's driving that price up.
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post #285 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

I knew it would involve another way of looking at the numbers. Who's to say which one is right? This isn't an accurate measure but just from looking at the price of food and such the only thing that's that much out of line is gas and we all know what's driving that price up.

The one that's "right" is the one that affects people more, and that is the one I presented.
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post #286 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

The one that's "right" is the one that affects people more, and that is the one I presented.

What? Do you think there's only people in Pennsylvania? Can you back that up with something other than " I'm just right "?
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post #287 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

but just from looking at the price of food and such the only thing that's that much out of line is gas and we all know what's driving that price up.

If you think food prices have not been rising a lot then you're not paying attention.

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post #288 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

If you think food prices have not been rising a lot then you're not paying attention.

Well average sale price ( for example ) in little Salem Oregon for a pound of hamburger used to be $1.99 2 years ago now it's $2.29. 4 years ago it was .99 cents. I buy food all the time and for a long time the prices remained stable. Now they re rising but not at a level that would indicate what you guys are saying. So once again can you back up your claims about the other way of looking at inflation with facts or not?
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post #289 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

Well sale price ( for example ) in little Salem Oregon for a pound of hamburger used to be $1.99 2 years ago now it's $2.29. 4 years ago it was .99 cents. I buy food all the time and for a long time the prices remained stable. Now they re rising but not at a level that would indicate what you guys are saying. So once again can you back up your claims about the other way of looking at inflation with facts or not?

So you've picked one example...that his risen 15% is two years! But there are others as well and it isn't always reflected directly in the selling price. For example, in some places a 1.75L container of orange juice is selling for more than a 1/2 gallon was a year ago. This is another way the degree of inflation is hidden. Inflation isn't always seen in price increases. In fact that's actually one of the last places it's seen. People get used to buying a can of soup for $X...so the price stays the same but the can gets smaller. Etc.

My wife, who does most of the food shopping, has been telling me about this going on for a year or more.

Clothing is coming next...it's been building for a couple of years. Higher prices, less/thinner material, etc. The net net of it is more like double the "official" inflation rate, possibly more. You might see some of the signs already.

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post #290 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

So you've picked one example...that his risen 15% is two years! But there are others as well and it isn't always reflected directly in the selling price. For example, in some places a 1.75L container of orange juice is selling for more than a 1/2 gallon was a year ago. This is another way the degree of inflation is hidden. Inflation isn't always seen in price increases.

My wife, who does most of the food shopping, has been telling me about this going on for a year or more.

Clothing is coming next...it's been building for a couple of years. Higher prices, less/thinner material, etc. The net net of it is more like double the "official" inflation rate, possibly more. You might see some of the signs already.

And you don't think this is because of the rising cost of gas which transports that stuff ( not to mention the orange crop has been having a very difficult time with the weather this year as are many fruits so that was expected )? Yes it's gone up but not enough in my mind to make the rate of inflation 10% over all.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...16222720110118

http://www.vpr.net/npr/137129634/

http://www.freshplaza.com/news_detai...3#SlideFrame_1

It's been crappy for farmers this year and last. Global warming anyone?
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post #291 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

And you don't think this is because of the rising cost of gas which transports that stuff? Yes it's gone up but not enough in my mind to make the rate of inflation 10% over all.

Fuel costs are certainly a key part, but not the only part. But fuel cost inflation is still inflation. There are time the price increases in a particular good are reflection of supply and demand shifts and there are times when the general increase in prices is a result of inflation (an increase in the money supply).

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post #292 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

Fuel costs are certainly a key part, but not the only part. But fuel cost inflation is still inflation. There are time the price increases in a particular good are reflection of supply and demand shifts and there are times when the general increase in prices is a result of inflation (an increase in the money supply).

Quote:
fuel cost inflation is still inflation.

Yes but as I said we know why fuel cost are higher and these aren't normal times in the middle east. And of course there's the good old speculators driving the price higher and who profit from this excuse.
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post #293 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

Yes but as I said we know why fuel cost are higher

"We" do?


Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

And of course there's the good old speculators who profit from this excuse.

Best that you avoid subjects you don't know anything about.


Yes, there are multiple factors at play. Unrest in the Middle East influence oil prices. Weather diminishes food supplies. But these are not the only factors. The creation of trillions of dollars in new money is also a factor the devalues the dollar. This has been going on steadily for 100 years and more aggressively in recent years.

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post #294 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

"We" do?




Best that you avoid subjects you don't know anything about.


Yes, there are multiple factors at play. Unrest in the Middle East influence oil prices. Weather diminishes food supplies. But these are not the only factors. The creation of trillions of dollars in new money is also a factor the devalues the dollar. This has been going on steadily for 100 years and more aggressively in recent years.

Quote:
Best that you avoid subjects you don't know anything about.

So you'd just let them off the hook? http://articles.sfgate.com/2011-06-2...res-oil-prices
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post #295 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

So you'd just let them off the hook?

Let them off the hook for what?

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post #296 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

Let them off the hook for what?

Do you think it's right that they are able to affect the price of oil as much as they do?

By the way I left a link above.

Quote:
for a gallon of regular gas peaked just below $4, speculators added about 83 cents to the total price, according to researchers Robert Pollin and James Heintz. Remove speculators from the market, and gasoline would have topped out around $3.13.

That "speculative premium" cost the typical U.S. driver $41 for the month of May ($82 for two-car families) and amounted to a $1 billion drag on the U.S. economy, according to the study.
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post #297 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

Do you think it's right that they are able to affect the price of oil as much as they do?

By the way I left a link above.

First, you're assuming their actions affect it a lot. But let's go with that assumption for a moment. In essence what speculators do is to place a bet that future prices of a good will rise. In placing this bet they are open to two possibilities a) they are right and they will profit from this prediction, b) they are wrong and they will lose (a lot) because of their prediction. Possibility B gives them the incentive to bet wisely and knowledgeably not recklessly and capriciously. In placing these bets, they are usually betting there will be less of a some good (say oil) in the future and their bets drive up prices in the short term. This is actually a good thing (if they are right) because it achieves two things at once: a) it causes people buying the good in the present to start conserving and looking for other ways to conserve in the future, b) it causes producers to start looking harder for more of the good, thus increasing the supply.

Speculators provide a valuable service in the market.

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post #298 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

Show me a photo like this from Sweden...



Anyone who ever has been in an American city knows that this kind of thing is EVERYWHERE in the US. In Every city. Well, guess what? People sit on those chairs because they are poor. They sleep in those alleyways because they are poor. The wrong type of person walking in the wrong part of town is in deep shit because so many people are poor. This is undeniable.

Fellowship has pointed out that there are poor neighborhoods in Paris. I've been to Paris as well, and I've walked through the streets. It's nothing like this ANYWHERE. Anyone who says Paris is just as bad as Los Angeles, Detroit, Chicago, New York City... anyone who says that is a LIAR.

But we're talking about Sweden now. Where are the Swedish slums? Is that not an indicator of standard of living?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/fakepilot/107853007/

There are homeless everywhere, even Sweden...
NoahJ
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NoahJ
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post #299 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

In what way are Sweden and Canada "more successful"? The stock market index?

Can't comment on Sweden, but Canada has:

- lowest national debt of any western nation
- fully funded pension
- solvent well regulated banks
- a medical system that works better than ours, and costs half as much
- roughly the same level of taxation as we do in the US

They just have done a better job of running their country than we have, flat out.
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post #300 of 338
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoahJ View Post

http://www.flickr.com/photos/fakepilot/107853007/

There are homeless everywhere, even Sweden...

So are you saying there are as many homeless in Sweden as in the US? Half as many? Ten percent? One percent (you're getting closer).

Yet you deny that Sweden is more successful in this regard than the US is. Nice.
post #301 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

So are you saying there are as many homeless in Sweden as in the US? Half as many? Ten percent? One percent (you're getting closer).

Yet you deny that Sweden is more successful in this regard than the US is. Nice.

Really? Did I deny that?
NoahJ
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post #302 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

So are you saying there are as many homeless in Sweden as in the US? Half as many? Ten percent? One percent (you're getting closer).

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton

And then... that's where my photo comes in. We know there are hundreds of thousands of homeless in the US. There are none in Sweden.

Someone is moving the goal posts.

But let's go to the numbers shall we?

According to this in 2005 there were about 18,000 homeless people in Sweden, a nation with a population of around 9,354,462. This amounts to around 0.19 of 1% of the population.

According to this there are between 200,000 and 500,000 homeless in the US, a nation with a population of around 308,745,538. This amounts to around 0.16 of 1% of the population.

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post #303 of 338
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

Someone is moving the goal posts.

But let's go to the numbers shall we?

According to this in 2005 there were about 18,000 homeless people in Sweden, a nation with a population of around 9,354,462. This amounts to around 0.19 of 1% of the population.

According to this there are between 200,000 and 500,000 homeless in the US, a nation with a population of around 308,745,538. This amounts to around 0.16 of 1% of the population.

Yes, let's look at the numbers. Look at Diagram 1 of the first link you provided. "Homeless" in that report includes living with friends or relatives, as well as living in institutions. Imagine what the number of "homeless" in the US would be if those were among the criteria in the US numbers.
post #304 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by e1618978 View Post

Can't comment on Sweden, but Canada has:

- lowest national debt of any western nation
- fully funded pension
- solvent well regulated banks
- a medical system that works better than ours, and costs half as much
- roughly the same level of taxation as we do in the US

They just have done a better job of running their country than we have, flat out.

Yeah, Canada is actually pretty good from what I can tell. I'd go there but I like warm weather.

But, interestingly, in terms of the economic aspects of freedom they are actually better than the US and much better than Sweden. So they probably can't be lumped in with the more socialist countries like Sweden, et al.

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post #305 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

Yes, let's look at the numbers. Look at Diagram 1 of the first link you provided. "Homeless" in that report includes living with friends or relatives, as well as living in institutions. Imagine what the number of "homeless" in the US would be if those were among the criteria in the US numbers.

Well, actually, in the US, those same situations are considered "homeless." That's certainly the case in the town I live in where the "homeless" are exactly what you just described: "living with friends or relatives, as well as living in institutions". That might even be the difference in the range of the numbers given.

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post #306 of 338
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoahJ View Post

Really? Did I deny that?

If you weren't denying it, then what was the point of your post? Kicks and laughs?
post #307 of 338
Hey, I'm all for talking up Canada. Especially on Dominion Day weekend.

But let's be honest. Canada has known for a long time that our biggest trading partner is going up a really long creek without a paddle. Our zeal to get our economic house in order is directly linked to the meltdown we foresee happening southside.
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post #308 of 338
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post

Hey, I'm all for talking up Canada. Especially on Dominion Day weekend.

But let's be honest. Canada has known for a long time that our biggest trading partner is going up a really long creek without a paddle. Our zeal to get our economic house in order is directly linked to the meltdown we foresee happening southside.

I'm all for cutting spending. We can definitely look to Canada as an example of how to do it. And this is not necessarily "moving away from Socialism".

http://www.instituteforgovernment.or...n-can-build-on

Quote:
Cuts were not evenly spread. Transport subsidies, international aid and agricultural subsidies were cut especially hard, but this allowed other kinds of spending to be protected or even increased. For example, benefits for the elderly were increased by more than 15%.

Cut "international aid" for fuck's sake, including the military (especially the military). Cut agricultural subsidies, which Republicans love. Cut transport subsidies, in other words OIL.

Look what the fuck we're doing in the States. We highly subsidize big oil. And then we go and subsidize (as lip service to environmentalists) alternative energies. We subsidize ethanol, which is really just another farm subsidy. If we cut out our big oil subsidies, we wouldn't have to subsidize alternative energy to compete with the oil companies, as alternative energies have countless other incentives for an energy company to invest in them. Cut them all out, but start with oil.

And then... we can increase social programs when we can afford it, just like Canada did.
post #309 of 338
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

According to this there are between 200,000 and 500,000 homeless in the US, a nation with a population of around 308,745,538. This amounts to around 0.16 of 1% of the population.

I don't know how you could look at that Wiki page, and use the "200,000 to 500,000" figure, which it clearly states is from the 1980's, and miss this one...

"According to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, there were 643,067 sheltered and unsheltered homeless persons nationwide on a single night in January 2009."

Was it lazy reading, or intellectual dishonesty?
post #310 of 338
Tonton, you really should have been here in the 90's. Chretien's government cut transfers to provinces hard (and Canada's social programs are all delivered provincially.)

Your side was wailing for a decade about the federal cuts to social programs. Even conservatives (who liked the elimination of the deficit) didn't think it was done correctly and simply transferred the debt to the provincial ledger. The idea that it was some kind of orderly program review that cut costs only in certain programs isn't correct.

Cuts were made across the board.
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post #311 of 338
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post

Tonton, you really should have been here in the 90's. Chretien's government cut transfers to provinces hard (and Canada's social programs are all delivered provincially.)

Your side was wailing for a decade about the federal cuts to social programs. Even conservatives (who liked the elimination of the deficit) didn't think it was done correctly and simply transferred the debt to the provincial ledger. The idea that it was some kind of orderly program review that cut costs only in certain programs isn't correct.

Cuts were made across the board.

So in other words, these federal cuts for social programs were not cuts at all, as the burden was simply shifted to the provinces. But did the provinces cut social spending as a result? Not nearly as much as spending cuts in other areas, which is my point, as stated in the quotation I presented.

I suggest you read this abstract (PDF).

Yukon: No tax cuts. No decrease in federal funding. Increased spending on health and social services 3%. Decreased spending on community and transportation services 2%. Increased spending on Education 3%. Increased spending on housing 3%.

Doesn't look at all like what you describe. Spending on social programs was not cut and social programs were not affected.

Saskatchewan: Nominal tax cuts (exclusively benefiting the poor), manufacturing investment incentives: a reduction of revenue from income taxes and an increase of income from corporate taxes. Increase in federal funding (opposite to what you state). Increase in health spending 2%. Decreased spending on education 2%. Nominal decrease in social services spending. Decrease in highways spending 12%.

This looks nothing like what you describe. Spending on social programs was not cut and social programs were not affected. There were spending cuts elsewhere (transportation, as my quotation points out).

NWT: No tax cuts. No decrease in federal funding. Nominally decreased spending on education, culture and employment 1%. Decreased spending on public works, 6%. Nominally decreased spending on health and social services, less than 1%. Increased spending on municipal and community affairs 2%. Increased spending on housing 4%.

Again. Doesn't reflect what you claim.

Okay, let's jump to a more populous province.

BC: No major tax changes. 3.7% reduction in federal funding (sounds like what you say, but federal funding is still high above the level of two years before). Increase in health spending 2.5%. Increase in social services spending 3.5%. Increase in education spending 5%. Cut in transportation spending 1%.

Damn... pretty much looks like this:

"Cuts were not evenly spread. Transport subsidies, international aid and agricultural subsidies were cut especially hard, but this allowed other kinds of spending to be protected or even increased. For example, benefits for the elderly were increased by more than 15%."

And not at all like this:

"The idea that it was some kind of orderly program review that cut costs only in certain programs isn't correct. Cuts were made across the board."

Do I need to look at all the other provinces?
post #312 of 338
You're right Tonton. Mike Harris' Common Sense Revolution never happened.

We are just now - 20 years later - building the Eglinton Subway in Toronto cancelled as one of Harris' first acts in office.

Transit expansion was killed. Hospitals (and whole cities) were merged. Refugee, court and infrastructure costs passed on to cities to fund out of property taxes. Social housing became the exclusive purview of cities with no money to fund it (not that I personally minded.) Every left-wing group in the province wanted to strike.

But now, I'm being told it never happened?

The fact is that the Liberal Feds cut transfers to the provinces hard, and kept the Conservative GST and that's what balanced the books. In the meantime, the provinces and cities were hammered from the recession as well as the cuts, and their deficits soared.

Look, I'm a conservative, and have no problem defunding bloated governments. But the idea that you can cut a few programs (corn, the military etc.) and balance the budget is false.

It will take hard decisions, and much wailing and gnashing of teeth. That's why everybody ducks it.
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post #313 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

I don't know how you could look at that Wiki page, and use the "200,000 to 500,000" figure, which it clearly states is from the 1980's, and miss this one...

"According to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, there were 643,067 sheltered and unsheltered homeless persons nationwide on a single night in January 2009."

Was it lazy reading, or intellectual dishonesty?

It was an oversight. OK. Let's go with the 643,067. That brings the number up to 0.20 of 1% for the US compared with 0.19 of 1% for Sweden.

But lest I be accused of intellectual dishonesty (in a demonstration of irony on your part), let's bump that number to include "living with friends or relatives, as well as living in institutions" which the Swedish number includes: Let's double it to 1.2M and we have 0.40 of 1% compare to 0.19 of 1%.

Of course, in the spirit of intellectual honesty, we should also note that the number you refer to in the US was from January 2009 in the midst of a major economic recession while the latest numbers we have from Sweden are from 2005, a time when all things were pretty hunky dory for most people and most countries.

While we can continue to niggle over the specific numbers and percentages here, the real point here is that you were first claiming this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton

And then... that's where my photo comes in. We know there are hundreds of thousands of homeless in the US. There are none in Sweden.

Then someone shows a random photo a similar to one you've shown, only this time it's someone in Sweden. Then you change the claim to this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton

So are you saying there are as many homeless in Sweden as in the US? Half as many? Ten percent? One percent (you're getting closer).

Now, I suspect you're trying to be clever here by sticking to absolute numbers. But, if we want to be intellectually honest, the real argument should be around relative numbers. Will a nation of 9M people likely have fewer homeless in absolute numbers than a comparably wealthy and developed nation of 308M people? Almost certainly. Common sense tells us this. But will the numbers be relatively similar (as a percentage)? Probably close. And that's what the numbers are starting to show.

But your hand-waving and generalizations and unsupported claims (you have yet to provide a single link in support of your claims...other than random pictures) have been designed to give the impression that the US is practically a 3rd world nation when it comes to homelessness while Sweden is some kind of Utopia. That looks a bit foolish and...intellectually dishonest.

P.S. What's interesting to note is that one of the primary causes of homelessness in the US is lack of affordable housing. There's an irony here (for those big government champions) given that federal, state or local government policies, whether regulation, zoning, taxation, interest rate manipulation, open space acquisitions (in the where I live more than 40% of the city is open space...land acquired with tax dollars and removed from the potential supply for housing...thus keeping housing costs much higher) have driven the cost of housing up. Way up.

P.P.S. I'll also note we haven't even delved into the effect immigration has on this. This is something the US has to deal with much more than Sweden. For example, in Los Angeles it's estimated that maybe 30% of the homeless are illegal immigrants from Mexico.

P.P.P.S. Finally, I thank you for noting that comparing statistics between countries might be problematic because of differences in counting and reporting techniques let alone definitions. This makes the same point:

Quote:
The legal definition of "homeless" varies from country to country, or among different entities or institutions in the same country or region.

Quote:
The following statistics indicate the approximate average number of homeless people at any one time. Each country has a different approach to counting homeless people, and estimates of homelessness made by different organizations vary wildly, so comparisons should be made with caution.

But if we were to use the numbers stated in that article, the entire EU (pop: 502,486,499) has an estimated 3M homeless for a percentage of about 0.5 of 1%. On par with the others we've seen.

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 #314 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

If you weren't denying it, then what was the point of your post? Kicks and laughs?

As a rebuttal to your claim that there are no homeless in Sweden. And yes, you did say none. At first I thought you were saying that there were no areas that were grafitti covered messes and found a lot of pictures of that. Then I looked for generally trashy areas and found many pictures of that, then I looked for homeless circumstances and found pictures of that. Then I found a story of a homeless person who has been so for a very long time in spite of all the social programs. Then posted it to show that there is no utopia anywhere. I was simply replying to your lazy assertion that had little basis in actual facts.

I said absolutely nothing about the US and it's situation. I was actually wondering if you were actually right about Sweden. I found that you were not. And the posts that followed on since mine have stated better than I did why this is the case.
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 #315 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

What? Do you think there's only people in Pennsylvania? Can you back that up with something other than " I'm just right "?

WTF? I'm simply saying that food and energy prices affect consumers dramatically, yet they are not present in the inflation numbers you quoted. I'm not even attacking you on that, because those are the numbers the government purports to be accurate as well. In reality, inflation is much higher than they are claiming, and has been for a long time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

And you don't think this is because of the rising cost of gas which transports that stuff ( not to mention the orange crop has been having a very difficult time with the weather this year as are many fruits so that was expected )? Yes it's gone up but not enough in my mind to make the rate of inflation 10% over all.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...16222720110118

http://www.vpr.net/npr/137129634/

http://www.freshplaza.com/news_detai...3#SlideFrame_1

It's been crappy for farmers this year and last. Global warming anyone?


Wait...you're actually trying to figure the real inflation rate yourself by looking up stuff on the internet? jimmac, I didn't pull the 10% figure out my ass from a few anecdotal examples of crop freezing and what not:

http://allfinancialmatters.com/2010/...nflation-rate/

http://inflationdata.com/inflation/i..._Inflation.asp

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/0..._n_849640.html

http://inflation.us/blscpi.html


It may not be 10%. It may be 15% Or 9%. What matters is that it's certainly not 3%. Its' much, much higher when food and energy are added.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

So you'd just let them off the hook? http://articles.sfgate.com/2011-06-2...res-oil-prices

I have to agree with MJ by asking "let who off the hook for what?" Your statement makes on think of some guys in a boiler room like bunker, secretly planning to raise the price of oil. jimmac, this may come as news to you, but "the speculators" are just investors who are trying to make a profit. Oil is a traded commodity, making very similar to a stock. They are not doing anything illegal. They are simply playing the market. The only way to not let them "off the hook" is to flood the market with supply, causing the price to drop and them to figuratively lose their shirts.
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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 #316 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post

WTF? I'm simply saying that food and energy prices affect consumers dramatically, yet they are not present in the inflation numbers you quoted. I'm not even attacking you on that, because those are the numbers the government purports to be accurate as well. In reality, inflation is much higher than they are claiming, and has been for a long time.




Wait...you're actually trying to figure the real inflation rate yourself by looking up stuff on the internet? jimmac, I didn't pull the 10% figure out my ass from a few anecdotal examples of crop freezing and what not:

http://allfinancialmatters.com/2010/...nflation-rate/

http://inflationdata.com/inflation/i..._Inflation.asp

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/0..._n_849640.html

http://inflation.us/blscpi.html


It may not be 10%. It may be 15% Or 9%. What matters is that it's certainly not 3%. Its' much, much higher when food and energy are added.




I have to agree with MJ by asking "let who off the hook for what?" Your statement makes on think of some guys in a boiler room like bunker, secretly planning to raise the price of oil. jimmac, this may come as news to you, but "the speculators" are just investors who are trying to make a profit. Oil is a traded commodity, making very similar to a stock. They are not doing anything illegal. They are simply playing the market. The only way to not let them "off the hook" is to flood the market with supply, causing the price to drop and them to figuratively lose their shirts.

So in the end it's still jst another way to look at things.

About the speculators so you're going to ignore the other side of this argument completely because you're just right. And you'd just let speculators do what they want?

Never mind it's a bad system to be set up that way.

This is a clear illustration of what's wrong with conservative thinking these days.
Without the need for difference or a need to always follow the herd breeds complacency, mediocrity, and a lack of imagination
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Without the need for difference or a need to always follow the herd breeds complacency, mediocrity, and a lack of imagination
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post #317 of 338
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

About the speculators so you're going to ignore the other side of this argument completely because you're just right. And you'd just let speculators do what they want?

Never mind it's a bad system to be set up that way.

What exactly are they doing that should be stopped? What exactly is bad about the system? Would you clarify these things?

One additional question: Have you ever purchased stock in a company, directly or indirectly (e.g., mutual or index fund)?

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 #318 of 338
Those Wall Street Gamblers Might Not Be Bad After All:

Quote:
In ancient Rome, speculators were sentries who looked out for signs of trouble. By the 17th century, speculate meant to consider, examine, or reflect upon with close attention, seemingly an activity to be encouraged.

Quote:
Perhaps its time for a reconsideration: This month marks 10 years since the technology bubble peaked, and among the few who warned of the coming implosion were speculators who had targeted tech stocks.

If there are heroes in the financial system, these are the heroes, said Frank Partnoy, a professor of law and finance at the University of San Diego. Theyre the people who bet against Enron, who bet against Lehman and warned it was insolvent.

Its not just academics who are coming to the defense of speculators. Earlier this month, BaFin, the regulatory agency that oversees financial markets in Germany, concluded that speculators werent behind Greeces problems.

Quote:
Every time the market goes down, they blame short-sellers and speculators, said Jim Chanos, a famous short-seller who manages more than $6 billion and was among the earliest voices to warn about Enron as well as the credit crisis. But his trades arent gambles at all. We do as much fundamental research as anybody, he said.

Quote:
If thats the case, speculators are far from being a plague on the markets. Instead, they help reduce risk by taking on the other side of popular trades, resisting the herd mentality that creates bubbles in the first place.


Speculators and the oil price:

Quote:
BASHING speculators is a popular pastime for American politicians trying to explain high and volatile oil prices. But whether speculation has really been responsible for spiking prices is a controversial issue. In 2008 the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) issued a report dismissing the role of speculators in last years startling run-up in prices.

Quote:
But analysts at Barclays Capital note that long swaps accounted for just 6.4% of total futures and options contracts, not enough to drive prices up on their own.

Quote:
This one set of numbers, in other words, does little to prove that speculators are overriding market fundamentals to drive prices.

Quote:
And a strong counter-argument remains: that speculators provide crucial liquidity. Even if they also have some effect on prices, taking them out of the game could well do more harm than good. It is tempting to look for scapegoats when high prices hurt consumers. But the real culprits for oil-price volatility may be much more familiar: supply, demand and global instability.

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 #319 of 338

And no comment about what the link to the study they just did about them means? You'll excuse anything for your political philosphy. I'm sorry but what they are doing is just wrong. You'll never see that of course.

Profit is one thing. Raping the system that you profit from is another. Greed is greed. But of course greed is good in your book because it's free enterprise.
Without the need for difference or a need to always follow the herd breeds complacency, mediocrity, and a lack of imagination
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Without the need for difference or a need to always follow the herd breeds complacency, mediocrity, and a lack of imagination
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post #320 of 338
Ahhh...the infamous jimmac gambit:

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

You'll excuse anything for your political philosphy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

You'll never see that of course.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

But of course greed is good in your book because it's free enterprise.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

And no comment about what the link to the study they just did about them means? You'll excuse anything for your political philosphy.

It's cute how often you accuse those you disagree with of this, but never seem to be guilty of it yourself. Off.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmac View Post

I'm sorry but what they are doing is just wrong. You'll never see that of course.

Well, I'm not seeing it because you're not explaining it. So, once more:

What exactly are they doing that is wrong? What exactly are they doing that should be stopped? What exactly is bad about the system? Would you clarify these things?

One additional question: Have you ever purchased stock in a company, directly or indirectly (e.g., mutual or index fund)?

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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