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Author Topic: Wealth Distribution Is Good For The Economy Back to Topics
SemiSteve

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Message Posted: Feb 19, 2013 7:53:31 PM

When wealth is spread out among many people they have increased discretionary spending power. When they buy things it helps the economy.

Conversely, when wealth is concentrated in great amounts held by a relatively few number of people there is a lack of wealth distribution; and most people have little discretionary spending power. They don't buy as much; so the economy slows down. That is what had been happening for the last 35 years.

It is better for the economy for most people to be doing fairly well than it is for a few to be doing extremely well and most people just getting by. Therefore, in order to improve our economy we should be looking for ways to reduce wealth inequality.

Raising the minimum wage is one way to ensure that the lower paid workers have more buying power. Another way would be to limit the income of the executives of large corporations to a multiple of their average workers income. Breaking up the largest corporations and banks so that there is more competition in markets would also help. Increased unionization also reduces wealth inequality. It would be very beneficial to take away the special treatment the biggest banks get from the Federal Reserve and allow market forces to work naturally.

"The primary mechanism for uploading wealth is debt-based creation of new money under the system of fractional reserve lending under the central control of the private bank-owned Federal Reserve, which supplies money, at interest, to the U.S. Government. Commercial banks create electronic entry money when they make loans, typically up to ten times the amount in their reserves. This contributes to cyclical asset hyperinflation bubbles and busts, in which the Big Five money-center banks are key players and from which the super-wealthy emerge relatively wealthier. This has resulted in a virtually permanent super-elite."

"In 2007 the richest 1% of the American population owned 34.6% of the country's total wealth, and the next 19% owned 50.5%. Thus, the top 20% of Americans owned 85% of the country's wealth and the bottom 80% of the population owned 15%. Financial inequality was greater than inequality in total wealth, with the top 1% of the population owning 42.7%, the next 19% of Americans owning 50.3%, and the bottom 80% owning 7%.[9] However, after the Great Recession which started in 2007, the share of total wealth owned by the top 1% of the population grew from 34.6% to 37.1%, and that owned by the top 20% of Americans grew from 85% to 87.7%. The Great Recession also caused a drop of 36.1% in median household wealth but a drop of only 11.1% for the top 1%, further widening the gap between the 1% and the 99%.[8][9][10]"

"A 2011 study found that US citizens across the political spectrum dramatically underestimate the current US wealth inequality and would prefer a far more egalitarian distribution of wealth.[7]"

wiki: Wealth inequality in the United States

[7.] ^ Norton, M.I.; Ariely, D. (2011). "Building a Better America – One Wealth Quintile at a Time" (PDF). Perspectives on Psychological Science 6: 9–12.

[Edited by: SemiSteve at 2/19/2013 7:54:46 PM EST]
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 24, 2014 1:29:29 AM

mudtoe - "I mean anyone who can't compete. Nobody ever gave Walmart kudos for outstanding customer service, knowledgeable sales people, a pleasing ambiance inside their stores, or anything else SS so naively claimed would keep customers going to Ms. Blunt's store even though her prices were higher. Walmart is successful for only one reason, price. Walmart drives other business out of business no matter how much of the above other stuff they beat Walmart at for only one reason, price."

Actually, I used to be a big fan of K-Mart. But the first WalMart I went in was cleaner, had a much better selection of stuff, and, yes, was a bit cheaper. But initially it was the cleanliness and (mostly) selection that was the big attraction.

Actually, now that I think about it, that was much of the attraction of the first Kresge I went into, sometime in the '70s. Now I'm tending more towards Target; though I consider much of their stuff to be worthless junk, they also have a lot of useful items. And they're kept up better than most of the Walmarts I see.

"Ever compare a Walmart cart to say one from Kroger? The Walmart cart most often has Fred Flintstone wheels and makes the devil's own noise when you push it as well as pulls left or right, yet people don't care because they can buy that same bottle of Tide for a couple bucks less at Walmart versus Kroger."

Actually, I care. They should do a little maintenance on their carts. But I get my Tide from Costco.

"Therefore your whole little house of cards about businesses who pay more for their labor than they have to being good for the economy is a worthless pipe dream, because the first ones who tried it and raised prices to support such wages would be immediately put out of business."

Costco seems to be doing just fine, and they pay above average.
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mudtoe
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 11:05:28 PM

rjh: "You mean those small local businesses like K-Mart? "


I mean anyone who can't compete. Nobody ever gave Walmart kudos for outstanding customer service, knowledgeable sales people, a pleasing ambiance inside their stores, or anything else SS so naively claimed would keep customers going to Ms. Blunt's store even though her prices were higher. Walmart is successful for only one reason, price. Walmart drives other business out of business no matter how much of the above other stuff they beat Walmart at for only one reason, price.

Price is king. Wonder why Amazon is kicking all the rest of the retailers butts, except for perhaps Walmart? Again, price. You can't try stuff on at Amazon, you can't handle the product before you buy, returns are more of a hassle, yet they still win in the end. Price is king, and people will go far out of their way, and accept some hassles, for a better price. Ever compare a Walmart cart to say one from Kroger? The Walmart cart most often has Fred Flintstone wheels and makes the devil's own noise when you push it as well as pulls left or right, yet people don't care because they can buy that same bottle of Tide for a couple bucks less at Walmart versus Kroger.

Therefore your whole little house of cards about businesses who pay more for their labor than they have to being good for the economy is a worthless pipe dream, because the first ones who tried it and raised prices to support such wages would be immediately put out of business.


mudtoe
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 7:21:02 PM

mudtoe - "Then you should open a business right next to a Walmart and put them out of business. And all those businesses on Main Street should have made the local Walmart a failure as soon as it opened."

You mean those small local businesses like K-Mart?
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 7:10:29 PM

Steve, sounds a bit like you're comparing Sam's Club to Costco.
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 6:06:01 PM

"Then you should open a business right next to a Walmart and put them out of business."

I have considered that. Since Walmart exists to fatten the accounts of one family (and has little competition) then a co-op could be created which would do everything the same way as Walmart except it would NOT have to generate a profit for the 1%. This would give the anti-walmart store (call it Tramlaw) a competitive advantage. Tramlaw would then be able to offer lower prices than the store that claims to do so!

But Walmart would not sit by and quietly allow this to happen. They would operate a single store(s) at a loss in order to prevent a competitor from doing to them what they have done to Main Street. So the Tramlaw start-up would have to be massively funded so that they could compete with Walmart at the majority of their locations, making it impossible for Walmart to under-sell Tramlaw for very long (thus depleting the accounts of that one family for as long as they persist). The Tramlaw start-up would have to be well-funded enough to account for that.

This would take a concerted effort to raise the sufficient capital before enacting the plan. But since it is a no-brainer idea it only hinges on gathering enough capital to make it work. Taking over Walmart's business niche (and returning half of Walmart's level of earnings to the original Tramlaw investors, the other half going to improved worker conditions) should be a juicy enough draw to entice the requisite deep-pocketed investors, but they would have to be willing to stay in for long enough to complete the plan.

After Walmart crashes, prices could be increased and worker conditions improved even more, along with more returns for the investors.

Of course some things are worth waiting for. Like earning money the old-fashioned way.
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mudtoe
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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 5:45:37 PM

SS: "And since the bar has been set by Ms Blunt, others will pay the same that she does, take better care of their employees, like she does, and keep them longer than Ebenezer. They will be happier and that will translate into better customer service which will make Ms Blunt's store even more popular. "


Then you should open a business right next to a Walmart and put them out of business. And all those businesses on Main Street should have made the local Walmart a failure as soon as it opened. Oh yea, none of that happened, and in fact it worked the other way around, as the supposedly loyal townspeople flocked to the Walmart as soon as it opened, leaving the higher priced supposedly better service giving and better wage paying local businesses with no customers and soon no business. So much for your theories...


mudtoe

[Edited by: mudtoe at 4/23/2014 5:47:21 PM EST]
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 5:32:26 PM

SemiSteve, "EZE: "Paying workers more just for the hell of it is not something you will find employers doing. They will, however, pay market prices"

--Just for the hell of it? Do you call doing something that is in the Constitution just for the hell of it?"

Can you show me exactly where in the Constitution that companies have to pay workers more?

I can't seem to find that phrase anywhere there.
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SemiSteve
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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 5:10:17 PM

Ms Blunt will still do a thriving business for the same reason that stores with high gas prices do. Convenience, customers in a hurry, prefer the location, etc.

And since the bar has been set by Ms Blunt, others will pay the same that she does, take better care of their employees, like she does, and keep them longer than Ebenezer. They will be happier and that will translate into better customer service which will make Ms Blunt's store even more popular. The employees will have more spending money so they will be able to buy more things, save, donate to charities, etc. All of this will spur the economy into high gear and other businesses will be able to sell more products and hire more workers. Those new jobs will produce a larger customer base which will come back to Ms Blunt in the form of increased volume. She will have to expand her store, branch out, and open new locations, hire more people. The community will prosper and everyone will have universal health care because they will all have full time jobs. Everyone will do so well that the full time work week can be reduced to 30 hours and everybody will then have 3 day weekends, month-long paid vacations, paid sick leave, a pension, and flexible personal time because, you know, they all have lives and stuff.
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mudtoe
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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 4:54:01 PM

rjh: "Even if prices went up, which would not be guaranteed, in most cases they wouldn't go up proportionally with the increase in worker pay. So we'd still see a boost in the economy due to higher demand."


Wrong. Let me tell you what would happen. We've already discussed what will happen if force is used by government mandating wages. Now consider what will happen if someone does it of their own free will. Let's say that Ms. Blunt owns a cannabis business in Colorado and, being a good liberal, decides to make all her workers full time, with Obamacare benefits, and to pay them what the left defines as a living wage. Of course with expenses like that she is going to have to raise the price of her products in order to have enough money to meet payroll every week. Across the street Mr. Ebenezer (but known to the town as Mr. Hip because he doesn't want his customers to know who and what he really is), an evil free market conservative, owns the only other cannabis shop in town, figuring he might as well put some of those liberal dollars coming from government handouts into his own pocket. Mr. Hip hires part time employees and pays them market rates, commensurate with with what other businesses in town are paying for store clerks, and the same as what Ms. Blunt used to pay. Mr. Hip, seeing that Ms. Blunt has raised her prices by 25%, raises his by 10%, figuring that people will pay 10% more rather than drive 15 miles to the next town to obtain their party supplies.

At the end of the day who do you think wins and who do you think goes out of business?


mudtoe

[Edited by: mudtoe at 4/23/2014 4:57:44 PM EST]
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 3:10:13 PM

mudtoe - "There would be no economic growth because prices would just go up, which would start another round of "workers aren't paid enough", leading to more higher prices, and calls for higher welfare benefits because of inflation."

Even if prices went up, which would not be guaranteed, in most cases they wouldn't go up proportionally with the increase in worker pay. So we'd still see a boost in the economy due to higher demand.

Which would lead to more jobs and probably more pay increases.

"You can't achieve economic prosperity by paying more for something than it's worth, just as you can't achieve economic prosperity by paying people not to work. Both are like friction in a machine; they slow it down, not speed it up."

You can't achieve economic prosperity when you're starving your customer base of the assets needed to buy your products, which is the result of the rich and powerful skimming too much off the top.

"If your theory were correct, then setting the minimum wage at say $100/hr would fix all our problems and get everyone off of welfare."

No, we've been through this before. Increasing the minimum wage might help, some, but the side effects would be considerable.

And it wouldn't change the basic problem, that those on top skim too much off the top, just because they can.
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 3:06:25 PM

EZExit - "--I am talking about the source of your desired additional cash to share the bounty with employers, FYI it doesn't come from the CEO, it comes from the company owner(s)"

Actually, for the set of "owners" that we're actually talking about, it comes from both.

"--Paying workers more just for the hell of it is not something you will find employers doing. They will, however, pay market prices. Unfortunately, companies do not have the ability to print currency nor do they have the ability to pay out more than they take in, to help the population "feel good"."

IOW, you're perfectly happy with our current stagnant economy. You don't see any need for the economy to grow, especially if it might help people "feel good".

And successful, in the long term, employers tend to pay above market prices for good employees. That's a big part of what makes them successful in the long term.

"--I don't know, the federal government mandates that my state pays the unemployed for 99 weeks, and they mandate that I pay for unemployment insurance for each and every employee."

You're a bit out-of-date. The federally-mandated extension expired last December. Benefits are back to a max of 26 weeks.

"--Not if everything was made more "equitable" in the nation... Or is "equitability" only desired when it might be a useful tool for class warfare?"

Yet another strawman.
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mudtoe
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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 2:25:27 PM

ss: "-Just for the hell of it? Do you call doing something that is in the Constitution just for the hell of it?"


Try filing a lawsuit based on your little "general welfare" nostrum in an effort to force business to pay what you think they should and see what that gets you. You will then find out what your assertion that "it's in the Constitution" is really worth.


mudtoe
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Weaslespit
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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 1:18:19 PM

"--I am talking about the source of your desired additional cash to share the bounty with employers, FYI it doesn't come from the CEO, it comes from the company owner(s)"

He's still not grasping it, rj...
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 12:57:30 PM

EZE: "Paying workers more just for the hell of it is not something you will find employers doing. They will, however, pay market prices"

--Just for the hell of it? Do you call doing something that is in the Constitution just for the hell of it?

And as far as what employers will pay, that varies. On average they pay market prices, yes, but many will pay below market prices if they think they can get away with it and they are greedy enough.

Try as you might we, the concerned, will not allow you to ignore Article I Section 8: "Congress shall have Power To ... provide for the general welfare ... "

This nation was founded on the principle that we want everyone to have a chance to prosper. When we have some of the greediest people acquiring power and using that to suppress the rest that phrase I am going to keep reminding you of says that Congress has the power to curb that. The free market is not a free-for-all. It is not the wild west. We must have rules, and we must keep updating them as new forms of greed are created. It's kind of like an arms race.
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mudtoe
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 12:27:47 PM

rjh: "That would cut into profits in the short term, but the economic growth that would follow if that became general practice would boost profits even higher."


There would be no economic growth because prices would just go up, which would start another round of "workers aren't paid enough", leading to more higher prices, and calls for higher welfare benefits because of inflation.

You can't achieve economic prosperity by paying more for something than it's worth, just as you can't achieve economic prosperity by paying people not to work. Both are like friction in a machine; they slow it down, not speed it up.

If your theory were correct, then setting the minimum wage at say $100/hr would fix all our problems and get everyone off of welfare. Instead, all it would do would make a loaf of bread cost $25, a hair cut $150, a gallon of gas $35, etc., not to mention chase those businesses that could leave, out of the country, and those businesses that could replace a person with a machine to immediately do so.

mudtoe



[Edited by: mudtoe at 4/23/2014 12:30:18 PM EST]
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 12:04:53 PM

rjhenn, " ...and better designed, refineries placed closer to either the oil fields or the end customers."

On this part we agree.

Exporting is good for business and jobs as well.

"Those jobs are largely transitory, and the oil is largely for export..."

It is also a secondary source if for some reason we need additional fuel here in the future, a "plan B" so to speak.

[Edited by: nstrdnvstr at 4/23/2014 12:06:17 PM EST]
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EZExit
Champion Author Phoenix

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 1:52:18 AM

RJHenn: <<<"So you're not talking about the same set of "owners" that we are.">>>

--I am talking about the source of your desired additional cash to share the bounty with employers, FYI it doesn't come from the CEO, it comes from the company owner(s)

<<<"That might be a viable argument, but my understanding of that is that workers should be paid more for the work they do. That would cut into profits in the short term, but the economic growth that would follow if that became general practice would boost profits even higher.

It would also make work more attractive, and reduce the welfare burden that some are obsessed with.">>>

--Paying workers more just for the hell of it is not something you will find employers doing. They will, however, pay market prices. Unfortunately, companies do not have the ability to print currency nor do they have the ability to pay out more than they take in, to help the population "feel good". Only the government can get away with doing this. The government has the ability to limit the damage to the dollar and increase its value for all citizens, by ceasing the practice of spending like drunken sailors.

<<<"Yes, state taxes on the employer. Which means that your "Unemployment is a federal program financed and mandated by the federal government" is incorrect.

And, yes, I agree that the state and federal taxes are actually hidden taxes on employees and customers. If you haven't noticed before, I favor both reducing and simplifying business taxes.

Nice try at a diversion, though.">>>

--I don't know, the federal government mandates that my state pays the unemployed for 99 weeks, and they mandate that I pay for unemployment insurance for each and every employee. I do not know right off hand how much federal money is slushed through our state in the name of "unemployment" benefits.

<<<"Again, those programs are run by the individual states. And cost of living varies from state to state. For example, I used to live in Kansas, just over the border from Oklahoma. I knew a lot of people who lived in Oklahoma, because it was cheaper, but worked in Kansas, because it paid better.">>>

--Not if everything was made more "equitable" in the nation... Or is "equitability" only desired when it might be a useful tool for class warfare?
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 1:06:11 AM

EZExit - "--Do you really think that an employer is simply a stock owner? There is maintenance, equipment, vehicles, inventory, overhead, etc. that is expended by an employer. Skin in the game is putting skin in the game, not receiving free stocks too."

And the type of "employer" you're talking about doesn't typically hire a CEO and pay him millions of dollars. He usually IS the CEO, and the COO and the CIO, etc..

So you're not talking about the same set of "owners" that we are.

"--Some of you have argued that an employee should share in the profits, that the employer is not sharing the fruits of their companies. Are you now wanting to change from that standpoint?"

That might be a viable argument, but my understanding of that is that workers should be paid more for the work they do. That would cut into profits in the short term, but the economic growth that would follow if that became general practice would boost profits even higher.

It would also make work more attractive, and reduce the welfare burden that some are obsessed with.

"--State taxes? You mean the taxes on the employers, the burden rate that all of you liberals always forget about."

Yes, state taxes on the employer. Which means that your "Unemployment is a federal program financed and mandated by the federal government" is incorrect.

And, yes, I agree that the state and federal taxes are actually hidden taxes on employees and customers. If you haven't noticed before, I favor both reducing and simplifying business taxes.

Nice try at a diversion, though.

----So "fair" distribution of entitlements to make things equitable for all unemployed is a "strawman"? Is this because it is a function of the government and not an evil company? Connecticut and Arizona unemployment amounts are neither equalized or even close to being equitable."

Again, those programs are run by the individual states. And cost of living varies from state to state. For example, I used to live in Kansas, just over the border from Oklahoma. I knew a lot of people who lived in Oklahoma, because it was cheaper, but worked in Kansas, because it paid better.
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EZExit
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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 12:45:41 AM

RJHenn: <<<"First of all, if you want to force them to "have skin in the game", shouldn't you do it the same way it's done with top executives, by, basically, giving them stock?">>>

--Do you really think that an employer is simply a stock owner? There is maintenance, equipment, vehicles, inventory, overhead, etc. that is expended by an employer. Skin in the game is putting skin in the game, not receiving free stocks too.

<<<"Second of all, we're not talking about "sharing the profits", but about paying workers a more equitable wage, in order to improve the overall economy.">>>

--Some of you have argued that an employee should share in the profits, that the employer is not sharing the fruits of their companies. Are you now wanting to change from that standpoint?

<<<"Which must be why it's partly paid for by state taxes.">>>

--State taxes? You mean the taxes on the employers, the burden rate that all of you liberals always forget about.

EZ Exit: <<<"Additionally, if everything is to be equalized, than it shouldn't cost more to live in a liberal state such as Connecticut.">>>

RJHenn: <<<"And still with the "equalized" strawman.

Nobody said "equalized". If anything, all that's been said is "more equitable".">>>

----So "fair" distribution of entitlements to make things equitable for all unemployed is a "strawman"? Is this because it is a function of the government and not an evil company? Connecticut and Arizona unemployment amounts are neither equalized or even close to being equitable.

[Edited by: EZExit at 4/23/2014 12:46:30 AM EST]
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 12:09:02 AM

mudtoe - "As I've said before, we'll see who ends up holding the bag at the end...."

How does that have anything to do with what caused it?
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 23, 2014 12:06:25 AM

EZExit - "--No, I mean that the employees should be forced to have skin in the game, if employers are to be forced to share profits with these employees."

First of all, if you want to force them to "have skin in the game", shouldn't you do it the same way it's done with top executives, by, basically, giving them stock?

Second of all, we're not talking about "sharing the profits", but about paying workers a more equitable wage, in order to improve the overall economy.

"--Unemployment is a federal program financed and mandated by the federal government, and operated by the states."

Which must be why it's partly paid for by state taxes.

"Additionally, if everything is to be equalized, than it shouldn't cost more to live in a liberal state such as Connecticut."

And still with the "equalized" strawman.

Nobody said "equalized". If anything, all that's been said is "more equitable".
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mudtoe
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 6:36:18 PM

rjh: "In fact, the one you're so obsessed with is only made worse by the one I'm telling you about. "


As I've said before, we'll see who ends up holding the bag at the end....


mudtoe
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EZExit
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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 6:05:08 PM

RJHenn: <<<"Don't you mean that the employees should receive their regular pay, plus dozens of times that in stock or stock options, just like the CEO does?">>>

--No, I mean that the employees should be forced to have skin in the game, if employers are to be forced to share profits with these employees.

<<<"Perhaps because unemployment insurance is a state program, and it costs more to live in Connecticut than in Arizona.">>>

--Unemployment is a federal program financed and mandated by the federal government, and operated by the states. Additionally, if everything is to be equalized, than it shouldn't cost more to live in a liberal state such as Connecticut.
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 6:00:16 PM

mudtoe - "You mean greed as in people who want something for nothing and have no problem living off of the forced charity of others?"

No, I mean the greed of those who expect others to buy what those who work for them produce, when they skim so much off the top that there isn't enough left for the workers to buy much of anything.

"You are right, that greed isn't going away anytime soon. All the more reason everything I have predicted is very likely to come to pass."

There are multiple forms and vectors of greed. The one you're worried about is much less damaging than the one I'm telling you about.

In fact, the one you're so obsessed with is only made worse by the one I'm telling you about.
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 5:34:58 PM

"Actually, Steve, the "fairly widespread prosperity" has been true only since WWII. Now we're returning to what was normal before the Great Depression."

Good clarification. I agree. It seems it took a deep depression and FDR to make us recognize the phrase "Congress shall have Power To ... provide for the general welfare ... "

Those wealth disparity addressing enactments accomplished by FDR and others were the only thing that prevented another mass deep depression during the great recession of 2008. Conservatives who don't see that are fooling themselves by minimizing the severity of the crash. They foolishly blame the cost of the crash on 'Obama's reckless spending spree.' Really, it was automatic social support spending that kept the nation afloat.
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mudtoe
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 5:21:22 PM

rjh: "So don't take enough out in the off-years to raise your income over that certain amount."


Doh! You finally got it! That's what I am doing!



rjh: "Only if you believe that good CEOs are as rare as you seem to think they are. "


It only matters what the Board of Directors of the companies who pay them think, and given what they do pay them, they obviously agree with me. And if the shareholders don't agree with the Board, then they are free to elect some other Board members, or sell their shares. Either way, they are shareholders of their own free will.


rjh: "Basically, if not for that greed, there'd be little support for "liberal policies".


You mean greed as in people who want something for nothing and have no problem living off of the forced charity of others? You are right, that greed isn't going away anytime soon. All the more reason everything I have predicted is very likely to come to pass.


mudtoe

[Edited by: mudtoe at 4/22/2014 5:25:17 PM EST]
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 4:40:45 PM

nstrdnvstr - "Well, if you consider more jobs and a more diversified source for oil "sugar"..."

Those jobs are largely transitory, and the oil is largely for export. What we need is more pipelines to the refineries on the East coast, which rely heavily on imported oil now, and more smaller, and better designed, refineries placed closer to either the oil fields or the end customers.
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 4:39:39 PM

SemiSteve - "Now, so far, there has been fairly widespread prosperity. Up until a while ago, anyway. But in the last few decades the rich and powerful seem to have gone on a greed spree and decided it's every man for himself."

Actually, Steve, the "fairly widespread prosperity" has been true only since WWII. Now we're returning to what was normal before the Great Depression.
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 4:38:43 PM

EZExit - "If the CEO is 20% vested into the company, shouldn't the employees also contribute 20% of their assets into too if they are going to share in the success or failure of the company?"

Don't you mean that the employees should receive their regular pay, plus dozens of times that in stock or stock options, just like the CEO does?

"Why should one person in Connecticut get $585 in government unemployment benefits per week, while someone else in Arizona only gets $240, that's not even half what the Connecticut resident's share is."

Perhaps because unemployment insurance is a state program, and it costs more to live in Connecticut than in Arizona.
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 4:34:23 PM

mudtoe - "If your income is over a certain amount your deductions start getting eliminated. The way I do it I lose deductions in only 1 year out of every 3 or 4. Again, I don't leave free riskless money on the table."

So don't take enough out in the off-years to raise your income over that certain amount.

OTOH, since your primary interest seems to be avoiding paying taxes, just make larger charitable donations. The last I heard, that deduction wasn't affected by income level.

"Nice non-answer (gee I don't like what you said so I'll slam your just for saying it because I can't actually refute it)."

No, that's your tactic. The results you expect and blame on "liberal policies" are ultimately the result of the greed that you favor, which has increased income and wealth inequality, thus empowered those same "liberal policies".

Basically, if not for that greed, there'd be little support for "liberal policies".

"You really don't get what a CEO does. They get paid to make the big decisions, like the kind that can make or break the company. The stakes couldn't be higher, and those who can make the right decisions when it counts and the big bucks are on the line, are a very rare breed."

In your opinion. In fact, there are probably quite a few with those abilities (or that luck) out there. They just don't have the right connections.

"If it weren't, they couldn't command the salaries that they do."

If the people determining the salaries weren't part of the same good-old-boy network.

"They may not know the CEO's name or face, but they are intimately affected by that person's skill, or lack thereof, as they walk through the showroom."

Yet there are probably hundreds of people out there, who aren't CEOs, who could have made the same, or better, decisions.

"Sort of puts that big salary into perspective doesn't it?"

Only if you believe that good CEOs are as rare as you seem to think they are.
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 4:31:36 PM

SemiSteve, "nst: "I do not earn a lot of money yet have an emergency fund. I should support someone that earns twice as much as me because they failed to have an emergency fund? What does that teach them?"

If you don't earn much then you don't pay much taxes so you've got nothing to worry about."

It's THE PRINCIPLE SemiSteve, I guess you don't understand.

""Having greater income does NOT mean they will save more."

Wrong. It most certainly does. People with greater income generally have greater savings."

NOT true, People with greater income usually have bigger homes, newer cars, more "stuff", take more expensive trips, oh, and pay more taxes!

"
nstrdnvstr: "If we built the XL Pipeline, their would be more "gas" going into the economy tank."

Nah. You're talking about putting sugar in the tank."

Well, if you consider more jobs and a more diversified source for oil "sugar"...
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 4:30:33 PM

AC-302 - "--uhh.. that's not what I'd call "profound wisdom", my friend. That's just common sense. So exactly what is your point?"

He's just trying to get nst to see that it IS common sense.
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 4:30:05 PM

nstrdnvstr - "Not if you continue to spend more than you take in!"

Which is totally beside the point that having more income makes it easier to increase your wealth.

"It has more to do with discipline than how much you make!"

It has to do with both, but what we're talking about is the "more income" bit. The discipline part is a completely different subject.

"And socialism doesn't?"

Lehman Brothers is a socialist government??? I though they were a capitalist corporation.

"Sure, I like his last reason for taxing away wealth, and I am paraphrasing here: You wouldn't want to be wealthy in a neighborhood where there are many poor people because you would be afraid that your children might be kidnapped."

One observed result of excessive wealth and income inequality.

"Yes, job loss, illness, and repairs can harm a budget, but that is why it is important to have an emergency fund for those types of things!"

Doesn't it take sufficient income in order to be able to build such a fund in the first place?
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mudtoe
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 11:47:49 AM

SS: "What that means is that "We The People" were sick and tired of being bullied by the rich and powerful; so we set up a government that has the power to ensure that if the economic system does not result in prosperity for the populace that the rich will be forced to take care of those who have been shut out."


ROFLMAO!! Your revisionist liberal history is getting in the way of the truth. Have you been vacationing in Colorado where the wacky tobaccy fumes have gotten to you?

What the founding fathers were tired of being bullied by was King George and the British GOVERNMENT!! The founding documents were written with the intention of protecting the people, not from evil rich people (George Washington, in large part thanks to his marriage to Martha, was one of the wealthiest men, if not the wealthiest man, in all the colonies), but from EVIL, OVERBEARING, TAX HAPPY GOVERNMENT!! It's precisely the kind of government that we have now that the founding fathers did everything possible to prevent. Their intent was thwarted by generations of liberals who ate away at the foundations of the founding documents and principles like a metastatic cancer. What we have left today, and the price we are going to pay in the not too distant future of national bankruptcy, is a direct result of that cancer.




mudtoe


[Edited by: mudtoe at 4/22/2014 11:50:47 AM EST]
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flyboyUT
Champion Author Utah

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 11:18:56 AM

"And since that is not happening we're gonna have to force the powerful to cut loose with some relatively good pay."

Steve there you go again with the force thing - Its called stealing and other names. A long time ago when the rulers tried to use force to squeeze more money out of people by raising the taxes on the tea they drank the people revolted against the use of force to "distribute the wealth".

By the way - workers may be paid by a company for working there a long time but unless they own part of the company through stocks or investing their capital in the company the only thing they are owed is a paycheck every couple of weeks for work performed during that time period.

Hey if your serious about distributing the wealth then advocate for a law that says every employee must purchase stock in the company with every paycheck they get. The company wont "give" it to them as part of their wages - they must physically take part of their wages and write a check to the stockbroker each month and buy stock. Now if lots of folks own stock the attitude might begin to change.

Yeah distribute the wealth - have ""Congress shall have Power To ... provide for the general welfare ... "" this applied - lets use your force idea to have Congress force people into buying stock..... That will promot the general welfare for sure.

Another thing lets force people to save part of their income to provide for themselves in the future - pass another law. Then lets pass a law that says people must stay within their budget adn can only use say 75% of wages for things like food and stuff - the other must be used to invest and save. Dont forget that people should give to charities too - pass another law Steve. Keep on passing laws and enjoy........
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AC-302
Champion Author Los Angeles

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 11:17:49 AM

SemiSteve - it is certainly HARDER to save when you have lower income, but it's not impossible. All one has to do is forego everything but the basics. Folks can save, and it is certainly smart to do so. Then again, unless they are living the "high life", they ought to be doing so already. Is it really a necessity to spend five bucks for a Starbucks every day or every workday? Is drip coffee at home so terrible, for example?
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Weaslespit
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 9:56:22 AM

I find it very telling that not a one of our resident Tea Partiers commented on the pending litigation regarding relatively Liberal companies engaging in activities to stifle wages through reduced competition of talent.

Very Telling. It is far more convenient to ignore such realities, I guess, when they don't conform to your underlying arguments (or utterly destroy them).
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 7:06:15 AM

EZE: "I'm good with regulating the pay of CEOs to a percentage of the average employee, if the risks taken by CEOs and their companies are also covered by the same percentages by these same employees. Let's call this forced participation in company ownership if you want a job. If the CEO is 20% vested into the company, shouldn't the employees also contribute 20% of their assets into too if they are going to share in the success or failure of the company?"

It has always been thus. The workers give their whole lives of effort and see it lost to the powerful. Pay them enough for their efforts that they can afford to invest 20% and they will do their best to make the collaboration a success.
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 7:03:44 AM

mud: "Oh, haven't you heard SS? The Constitution lived and breathed beyond that particluar phrase, so it no longer applies....."

I presume you are attempting to claim the preamble does not apply? It most certainly does. And that phrase is later reinforced by Article I Section 8: "Congress shall have Power To ... provide for the general welfare ... "

Is there some part of that phrase "power to provide for the general welfare" you don't understand?

Perhaps a bit of explanation is in order.

What that means is that "We The People" were sick and tired of being bullied by the rich and powerful; so we set up a government that has the power to ensure that if the economic system does not result in prosperity for the populace that the rich will be forced to take care of those who have been shut out.

Now, so far, there has been fairly widespread prosperity. Up until a while ago, anyway. But in the last few decades the rich and powerful seem to have gone on a greed spree and decided it's every man for himself.

"I Go Mine, The Hell With You" ain't gonna cut it; and we, the shafted, are gonna wave this document and that phrase in the face of the rich as we exercise the power granted to the masses there in!

Greed is making a shambles of the Constitution. The greater the concentration of wealth and power, the greater the groundswell for corrective action will become. People are more than willing to work for what they get if they feel it is worth while. But when the super-rich erect barriers to success which prevent the rest from having a good life you can expect the rest to do something about it.

Jobs have been destroyed.

If the rich wanna call themselves 'job-creators' it's time to use the power of all that money the big corporations are sitting on and go out and create a ship-load of decent-paying jobs so we can get this economy -rolling- again!

And since that is not happening we're gonna have to force the powerful to cut loose with some relatively good pay.

Because we, the people, do not all bust butt for they the few. We do it for we, the people.

We're willing to work well if we get paid well. That's the deal. Always has been, always will be. The days of stealing the wealth of the workers are -over-, dude. Go deposit THAT in your account.
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 6:40:55 AM


nst: "I do not earn a lot of money yet have an emergency fund. I should support someone that earns twice as much as me because they failed to have an emergency fund? What does that teach them?"

If you don't earn much then you don't pay much taxes so you've got nothing to worry about.

"Having greater income does NOT mean they will save more."

Wrong. It most certainly does. People with greater income generally have greater savings.

"Furthermore, if they spend their money, it still helps create jobs wherever they spend it. If they go to nicer hotels or restaurants, it supports those workers, etc.'

Great. Now we can build a solid middle class waiting tables and cleaning hotel rooms.

Me: "More citizens with discretionary spending ability allows for a more active economy when those people spend on things. The products and services they buy provide profits for businesses. When businesses profit they can expand and hire."

nst: "So what do those people that are earning more money now do with their "excess" earnings, stuff it under their pillow?
If they spend it, it helps the economy. If they invest it, it helps the economy."

It would be a combination of all. And you are correct. It all helps the economy. But only if they get paid enough to do all that.
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 6:35:16 AM

SemiSteve, "There's little gas in the economy tank."

nstrdnvstr: "If we built the XL Pipeline, their would be more "gas" going into the economy tank."

Nah. You're talking about putting sugar in the tank.
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 5:37:32 AM

SemiSteve, "There's little gas in the economy tank."

If we built the XL Pipeline, their would be more "gas" going into the economy tank.
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Apr 22, 2014 5:36:01 AM

SemiSteve, "And when that is depleted and the unexpected expenses/loss of income continue then one incurs debt. Many many have. People also fail to plan well. Very many have. No matter what the situation having greater income allows one more ease in forming a budget which facilitates discretionary spending ability."

So everyone else has to pay for other's failure to plan???

I do not earn a lot of money yet have an emergency fund. I should support someone that earns twice as much as me because they failed to have an emergency fund? What does that teach them?

Having greater income does NOT mean they will save more. Furthermore, if they spend their money, it still helps create jobs wherever they spend it. If they go to nicer hotels or restaurants, it supports those workers, etc.

"More citizens with discretionary spending ability allows for a more active economy when those people spend on things. The products and services they buy provide profits for businesses. When businesses profit they can expand and hire."

So what do those people that are earning more money now do with their "excess" earnings, stuff it under their pillow?
If they spend it, it helps the economy. If they invest it, it helps the economy.
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mudtoe
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Apr 21, 2014 9:57:20 PM

ss: "To allow this to happen is not promoting the general welfare. It goes against the Constitution."


Oh, haven't you heard SS? The Constitution lived and breathed beyond that particluar phrase, so it no longer applies.....



mudtoe

[Edited by: mudtoe at 4/21/2014 9:57:40 PM EST]
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EZExit
Champion Author Phoenix

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Message Posted: Apr 21, 2014 8:30:10 PM

I'm good with regulating the pay of CEOs to a percentage of the average employee, if the risks taken by CEOs and their companies are also covered by the same percentages by these same employees. Let's call this forced participation in company ownership if you want a job. If the CEO is 20% vested into the company, shouldn't the employees also contribute 20% of their assets into too if they are going to share in the success or failure of the company?

Let's also create an "unemployerment" insurance scheme, where employers can receive a portion of their business losses to cover them after they lost their business from the government, for 99 weeks, to help them until they can start another company, whichever comes first.

Let's go even further, and regulate the spending of government to be a certain percentage of GDP, to prevent them from creating inflation that destroys the value of the people's money. All entitlements should also be equalized. Why should one person in Connecticut get $585 in government unemployment benefits per week, while someone else in Arizona only gets $240, that's not even half what the Connecticut resident's share is. It's all about wealth distribution equality my friends!

There, now we can be wealth distribution friends.
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Apr 21, 2014 8:10:45 PM

Me: "The more income one has the easier it is to save or invest to build wealth."

AC: " That's just common sense. So exactly what is your point? "

Tell that to nst:

"Yes, job loss, illness, and repairs can harm a budget, but that is why it is important to have an emergency fund for those types of things! "

And when that is depleted and the unexpected expenses/loss of income continue then one incurs debt. Many many have. People also fail to plan well. Very many have. No matter what the situation having greater income allows one more ease in forming a budget which facilitates discretionary spending ability.

More citizens with discretionary spending ability allows for a more active economy when those people spend on things. The products and services they buy provide profits for businesses. When businesses profit they can expand and hire.

Hiring leads to more jobs. More jobs lead to a better economy.

It all stems from paying workers well for their contribution to the economic engine. Pay them poorly and the engine sputters. Pay them well and it revs.

When the economy sputters there are more job-seekers. Demand for jobs exceeds supply of openings. This drives wages down. The economy can get into a downward spiral. This has occurred as a long-term trend during the last 35 years. There's little gas in the economy tank. What little is there is being used faster than it is being replenished. We're in a race to the bottom. That is wiping out the middle class. For every person who is doing well there are two who are slipping behind.

We are losing ground, losing the middle class. The eventual result will be a few very rich and the rest have little. Capitalism needs to be regulated to counter the effects of greed by the powerful; which give us the race to the bottom, wipes out the middle class, and destroys the economy for most. To allow this to happen is not promoting the general welfare. It goes against the Constitution.

[Edited by: SemiSteve at 4/21/2014 8:13:59 PM EST]
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mudtoe
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Apr 21, 2014 6:53:20 PM

rjh: "Wouldn't it make more sense to spread out the timing of your investments a bit more, and take some of the capital gains each year, instead of lumping them together?"


No, unless I have a reason to bailout on something, which only occasionally happens. If your income is over a certain amount your deductions start getting eliminated. The way I do it I lose deductions in only 1 year out of every 3 or 4. Again, I don't leave free riskless money on the table.


rjh: "And you're still obsessed with the results of your favored policies."

Nice non-answer (gee I don't like what you said so I'll slam your just for saying it because I can't actually refute it).


rjh: "Most of the "managing" of such large enterprises is done by delegation."

You really don't get what a CEO does. They get paid to make the big decisions, like the kind that can make or break the company. The stakes couldn't be higher, and those who can make the right decisions when it counts and the big bucks are on the line, are a very rare breed. They don't get paid to "manage" the day to day operations of the business. Other people who are paid less (because more people can do that job well) perform that function. The CEO calls the plays and other people execute the game plan. And doing so well is every bit as rare a skill as being able to reliably hit a wide receiver on the run 45 yards down field with a 350lb gorilla in your face trying to smash you into the turf. If it weren't, they couldn't command the salaries that they do.


rjh: "Who really cares who's running GM or Citi? Would anyone be willing to pay more for a GM car because of who the CEO is?"

Yes they would, because the CEO is the person who decided what kind of car(s) the company produced and what they are looking at on the showroom floor. If the CEO is wrong, nobody buys the cars and the company loses money and maybe goes bankrupt and/or needs a bailout. If the CEO is right, the showroom is full of people willing to pay full retail price for that shinny new 1965 Mustang. They may not know the CEO's name or face, but they are intimately affected by that person's skill, or lack thereof, as they walk through the showroom.

The people who build the cars, transport the cars, sell the cars, buy the cars, maintain the cars, make the steel that goes into the cars, etc., are all very much affected by the decision that CEO made on what to produce. They all prosper if the CEO chose wisely, and they all suffer if the CEO chose poorly. Sort of puts that big salary into perspective doesn't it?


mudtoe

[Edited by: mudtoe at 4/21/2014 6:54:45 PM EST]
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AC-302
Champion Author Los Angeles

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Message Posted: Apr 21, 2014 6:34:34 PM

SemiSteve said: "The more income one has the easier it is to save or invest to build wealth."

--uhh.. that's not what I'd call "profound wisdom", my friend. That's just common sense. So exactly what is your point?
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Apr 21, 2014 5:58:06 PM

Weaslespit, ""and I am paraphrasing here"

Understatement of the day..."

I suggest you listen to his last statement again.
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Apr 21, 2014 5:56:45 PM

SemiSteve, "Making a silly assumption that if one individual can save that means everyone can is absurd. Individual circumstances vary. Outside factors affect personal budgets beyond individual control. Job loss illness auto and home repairs can conspire to foil the best plans. Everyone takes risks. Some pay off others incur debt. It is silly to save at x interest while carrying debt at 7x interest.

The more income one has the easier it is to save or invest to build wealth."

So everyone carries debt?

If one chooses to live within or below ones means, for example paying of credit card debt in full every month, there is no interest to carry, is there?

Yes, job loss, illness, and repairs can harm a budget, but that is why it is important to have an emergency fund for those types of things!
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