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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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Weaslespit
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Nov 26, 2014 3:15:27 PM

"Have noticed that nstrdnvstr almost acts like a chatbot in that there is a tendency to avoid direct answers and substitute another discussion instead."

Yes, kinda like fueluser...
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Nov 26, 2014 2:53:45 PM

Have noticed that nstrdnvstr almost acts like a chatbot in that there is a tendency to avoid direct answers and substitute another discussion instead.
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Nov 26, 2014 1:07:05 PM

PopcornPirate - "I love my side business, but I must make a profit or I have to fold up. There is no NO to that statement."

And there's no contradiction there with what anyone else has said.

But making a profit is not "greed".

[Edited by: rjhenn at 11/26/2014 1:07:29 PM EST]
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Nov 26, 2014 9:16:53 AM

Yes, I have run a successful business. Two of them, actually. In both cases I not only made money but I supported myself and depended on the business.

And no, greed is not good at all. I would have considered it greedy to try to figure out how to mislead customers into thinking they are getting more than they really are or to misrepresent the quality of the product or to underpay desperate workers just because I can get away with it for a while.

I made good money doing good work and I never had any thoughts of guilt about ripping people off.

Because there is plenty of good money to be made by being good to people.

Unfortunately some business is saturated and it is too competitive to enter. In those cases, many will resort to greed.

The trick in that case is to locate an unsaturated niche you are good at and work hard. Nothing is easy. But the rewards make it worth the effort.

[Edited by: SemiSteve at 11/26/2014 9:25:39 AM EST]
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Weaslespit
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Nov 26, 2014 9:11:23 AM

"I try every trick I know when someone enters my booth to poke, prod & persuade them to buy something."

Selling a product is not the same as being greedy.

"Then I am most likely correct that none of you guys owns or has ever run a business...other then into the ground."

Which has nothing to do with what was being discussed (innovation)...
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PopcornPirate
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Message Posted: Nov 26, 2014 8:28:19 AM

Then I am most likely correct that none of you guys owns or has ever run a business...other then into the ground.
I love my side business, but I must make a profit or I have to fold up. There is no NO to that statement.
Sure I would like to make more money...everyone would.
I try every trick I know when someone enters my booth to poke, prod & persuade them to buy something. I now even take credit/debit cards to make it less painful for them.
Remember the saying " Greed is Good! "
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Nov 26, 2014 1:19:41 AM

I've dealt with a number of businesses whose primary purpose seemed to be to keep the owner from dying of boredom.
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Nov 25, 2014 8:29:05 PM

The all-knowing IRS does not differentiate between greed and ambition.
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Nov 25, 2014 6:32:20 PM

Well if your life is centered on money then the IRS is the end-all be-all definitive source of knowledge.
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Weaslespit
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Nov 25, 2014 9:13:13 AM

"Sorry.
If you do not have a profit in 3-4 years...the IRS considers your business a HOBBY"

Point?
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PopcornPirate
Champion Author New Jersey

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Message Posted: Nov 25, 2014 9:09:37 AM

Sorry.
If you do not have a profit in 3-4 years...the IRS considers your business a HOBBY
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Weaslespit
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Nov 25, 2014 9:04:18 AM

"So in your world people don't "build things" in order to sell them and make money? They just do it for fun?"

In some cases, yes. That is called 'passion'. Intending to sell something to make a profit still doesn't equate to greed...
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Nov 25, 2014 1:03:25 AM

nstrdnvstr - "So in your world people don't "build things" in order to sell them and make money? They just do it for fun?"

I take it you've never had a hobby. Never knew anyone who just "tinkered" with stuff?

"I see where you are confused. Coveting others people money, even in to give it to someone else might give some a warm fuzzy feeling inside, but that is still greed."

How did you get that out of anything that Steve said?

[Edited by: rjhenn at 11/25/2014 1:05:21 AM EST]
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Nov 24, 2014 6:31:05 PM

nstrdnvstr, I have two questions I'd be curious for you to answer.

Do you see no difference between the words 'ambition' and 'greed?'

Do you think it is possible to earn wealth without being greedy?
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nstrdnvstr
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Message Posted: Nov 24, 2014 5:19:16 PM

SemiSteve, " FYI, it is possible to make money, and plenty of it, without being greedy. Look at any worker cooperative, such as Union Cab in Madison. Nobody getting disproportionally rich as others barely squeak by. Everyone doing quite nicely."

I see where you are confused. Coveting others people money, even in to give it to someone else might give some a warm fuzzy feeling inside, but that is still greed.
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Nov 24, 2014 5:17:18 PM

""So they didn't start their businesses with the intent of making money? They didn't go to work in order to make money?"

Hoping to make money, that may have been a secondary aspiration. You clearly have no idea why people 'Build That'..."

So in your world people don't "build things" in order to sell them and make money? They just do it for fun?
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streetrider
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Message Posted: Nov 24, 2014 9:53:00 AM

Many inventions came from the intrinsic value of the inventor tinkering.
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Weaslespit
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Message Posted: Nov 24, 2014 9:49:59 AM

"So they didn't start their businesses with the intent of making money? They didn't go to work in order to make money?"

Hoping to make money, that may have been a secondary aspiration. You clearly have no idea why people 'Build That'...
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Nov 23, 2014 10:04:31 AM

"So they didn't start their businesses with the intent of making money? They didn't go to work in order to make money?"

Nowhere is it written declared nor understood that making money or having the intent to do such is synonymous with greed. FYI, it is possible to make money, and plenty of it, without being greedy. Look at any worker cooperative, such as Union Cab in Madison. Nobody getting disproportionally rich as others barely squeak by. Everyone doing quite nicely.

All one has to do is look outside the box to see this. The greed box that is...

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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Nov 23, 2014 7:49:43 AM

WeasleSpit, ""Greed also gave us many technological advances we have today. We wouldn't have personal computers if those that first built them weren't "greedy", wanting to make money.

That isn't what inspires ground-floor innovators like Jobs, Gates, etc."

So they didn't start their businesses with the intent of making money? They didn't go to work in order to make money?
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Cirdan
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Message Posted: Nov 23, 2014 1:26:28 AM

"It wasn't greed which motivated people to undertake such endeavors. That is ambition, drive and determination."

That doesn't explain a significant shortage of entrepreneurship/innovation in high-tax Europe vs. the US. There are very, very, few Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Larry Ellisons, or Mark Zuckerbergs there vs. here.
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SemiSteve
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Message Posted: Nov 22, 2014 12:12:34 PM

nstdr: "Well that depends on how one defines "greed". "Greed also gave us many technological advances we have today. We wouldn't have personal computers if those that first built them weren't "greedy", wanting to make money."

No. It wasn't greed which motivated people to undertake such endeavors. That is ambition, drive and determination.

Working together with others is one thing. Taking advantage of them from a more powerful position is another. That is the distinction between ambition and greed.

Ambition is win/win philosophy.

Greed is win/lose.

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Weaslespit
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Message Posted: Nov 22, 2014 10:40:01 AM

"Greed also gave us many technological advances we have today. We wouldn't have personal computers if those that first built them weren't "greedy", wanting to make money.

That isn't what inspires ground-floor innovators like Jobs, Gates, etc.

"Well that depends on how one defines "greed"."

Clearly not.
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Nov 22, 2014 5:51:05 AM

"Well it is no secret that greed causes a lot of grief in this nation and others. It represents one of the worst qualities of humans. People do terrible things because of greed. Both within and outside the confines of law and consideration for others."

Well that depends on how one defines "greed". "Greed also gave us many technological advances we have today. We wouldn't have personal computers if those that first built them weren't "greedy", wanting to make money.
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Weaslespit
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Nov 21, 2014 8:18:46 PM

"Reality is that greed corrupts all -isms."

Bingo.
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Nov 21, 2014 7:01:24 PM

Reality is that greed corrupts all -isms.
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Troller_Diesel
Champion Author Denver

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Message Posted: Nov 21, 2014 6:30:21 PM

So, he's espousing Objectivism?

Good job!

It's about time he started discussing reality...
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Nov 21, 2014 6:05:42 PM

Troller_Diesel - "Gosh. You've just perfectly described Socialist and Progressivism."

And Capitalism and Religion and several others. What Steve was talking about isn't limited to any particular -ism, but is common to all human endeavors.
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Troller_Diesel
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Message Posted: Nov 21, 2014 5:56:54 PM

Gosh. You've just perfectly described Socialist and Progressivism.
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SemiSteve
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Message Posted: Nov 21, 2014 5:31:50 PM

street,

Well it is no secret that greed causes a lot of grief in this nation and others. It represents one of the worst qualities of humans. People do terrible things because of greed. Both within and outside the confines of law and consideration for others.

Some mix greed with ambition; and seek fortunes through perfectly legal means. They can become very powerful that way. The power can go to their heads. They lose grasp of right and wrong and replace it with a rationalization that 'if it is legal that makes it right.' We know this is not correct.

They can even go so far as to use that power to make things legal which should never be. And they can also get the idea that they are so powerful that they can get away with illegal things if they work it a certain way using their power to ensure they won't be held accountable.

This greed and power combination makes it possible for them to become even more powerful. They get hooked on power. People become meaningless to them. All that matters is protecting and furthering their power and fortunes.

Some are born into this lifestyle and taught that it is fine. They are handed vast fortunes and a mandate to continue the greed. They can be the worst offenders.

Eventually they will destroy our nation. It has happened before to other nations before us. Many many times. It can happen to us. And it looks like we are headed that way.

We, the people, also have a lot of power. But it is collective power, not concentrated. If enough people understand what is going on, we have the power to curtail the greed and power of the power-junkies.

I feel that we must seize this collective power in order to save our nation for our descendants.

The top tier of many large multinational corporations and many politicians are afflicted with this greed. They are drunk on it. They are corrupted with it. They do not rise up to the responsibility of proper restraint of the temptation to use such power for petty pursuits.

You know that saying about absolute power. It is right on.

As we watch the power and the wealth inequity grow we are also witnessing the lead-up to the downfall of our nation.

If a nation such as ours, with our great Constitution, can not endure, what hope is there for mankind?

Those who understand must embrace the cause. We must communicate the situation and get as many others as possible to understand that: what we have is not guaranteed. We can lose it. We must not take things for granted.

People gave a lot to set up this nation. The work is not done. It falls upon us to fight for survival as well in our own way against our own enemies.

Remember the thing about all enemies, foreign and domestic?

This one is right here in our own back yard.

Greed has the power to destroy our nation and our habitat.

If we let it.
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Nov 18, 2014 7:22:06 PM

nstrdnvstr - "CEOs are not part of compensation committees."

But who do they socialize with?

"So all those jobs, and the families that are supported by those jobs are not important?"

To the people that have those jobs, yes, they're quite important. To the economy as a whole, they're pretty insignificant.

But keep on trying!
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streetrider
Champion Author Gary

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Message Posted: Nov 18, 2014 10:10:18 AM

Steve are you still trying to out the good ole boys club.

Roflmao
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Nov 18, 2014 10:03:49 AM

nstdr: "CEOs are not part of compensation committees."

True. Not their own, in large publicly traded companies. But they frequently sit on the boards of other large corporations. Whose executives sit on the board of their own. And so it becomes a matter of you scratch my back; I'll scratch yours.

And then they have lunch at 'the club.' Where they decide whose yacht they will go out on.
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Weaslespit
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Message Posted: Nov 18, 2014 9:33:25 AM

"So all those jobs, and the families that are supported by those jobs are not important?"

The King of Strawmen has spoken....
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Nov 17, 2014 8:06:56 PM

rjhenn, ""It benefits the people that work at the businesses where the executives shop. It benefits real estate agents, brokerage employees, banks, and the economy in general."

IOW, not much, and even that is extremely limited."

So all those jobs, and the families that are supported by those jobs are not important?
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Nov 17, 2014 8:05:33 PM

SemiSteve, "nstdr:"The market dictates that they [executives] are worth that much."

No, they get that much because they have some inside control over how much they are paid. Manipulating the process with certain power does not constitute 'market controlled.'"

CEOs are not part of compensation committees.
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streetrider
Champion Author Gary

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Message Posted: Nov 17, 2014 8:02:29 AM

Skewed markets dictate slanted vision.
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Nov 16, 2014 6:22:36 PM

nstrdnvstr - "The market dictates that they are worth that much."

No, the "good ol' boy" system that sets their pay dictates that they are worth that much. Even when they fail.

"It benefits the people that work at the businesses where the executives shop. It benefits real estate agents, brokerage employees, banks, and the economy in general."

IOW, not much, and even that is extremely limited.

"And you just showed again that what I claimed you said is true, that the executives don't do "actual work"."

From my actual experience dealing with some executives.
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SemiSteve
Champion Author Tampa

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Message Posted: Nov 16, 2014 6:08:21 PM

nstdr:"The market dictates that they [executives] are worth that much."

No, they get that much because they have some inside control over how much they are paid. Manipulating the process with certain power does not constitute 'market controlled.'
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Nov 16, 2014 5:13:15 PM

rjhenn, "Is the work that those executives do worth hundreds or thousands of times what the work the actual workers do is worth to the company?"

The market dictates that they are worth that much.

"Is concentrating wealth and income like that doing anybody besides those directly benefiting any good?'

It benefits the people that work at the businesses where the executives shop. It benefits real estate agents, brokerage employees, banks, and the economy in general.

"Since different businesses have different cost structures, that's an impossible question to answer. In general, though, more than they're getting now should go to the ones doing the actual work."

And you just showed again that what I claimed you said is true, that the executives don't do "actual work".
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Nov 16, 2014 4:13:21 PM

nstrdnvstr - "Well you think that "the people that really work" earn more than they are getting paid currently. So where do you think that money originally comes from? It comes from revenue. It can't come from anywhere else in a successful business."

Belaboring the obvious. BTW, if you're going to quote me, I'd appreciate it if you quoted something I actually wrote, instead of what you wanted to see.

"You have said often that the executives should be paid less (from revenue) and the "workers" (as if executives don't really work) should be paid more (from revenue)."

Is the work that those executives do worth hundreds or thousands of times what the work the actual workers do is worth to the company? Is concentrating wealth and income like that doing anybody besides those directly benefiting any good?

OTOH, paying other employees more would increase consumer spending, thus demand for products, thus creating more jobs and more consumer spending. And even more wealth for the top 0.1%

The only downside to that is that their wealth and income would only be dozens or hundreds of times the average, instead of hundreds or thousands of times. IOW, they wouldn't be as able to brag that they're so much richer than the rest of us.

"So what percentage of revenue should go to what you call "the worker" and what percentage should go to the executives?"

Since different businesses have different cost structures, that's an impossible question to answer. In general, though, more than they're getting now should go to the ones doing the actual work.
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Weaslespit
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Message Posted: Nov 16, 2014 1:55:35 PM

"Weasle, your Nobel Laureate can sit in his ivory tower and pontificate until he retires on his public sector pension and double dips back into the system by "working" during his retirement. He probably doesn't have a lick of real world experience in the private sector economy, so I pay little heed to his lofty pronouncements."

Good strategy - attack the source, rather than the points he brings up.

Typical.
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Nov 16, 2014 9:57:22 AM

rjhenn, "nstrdnvstr - "You assume that a set percentage of revenue belongs to the employee from the start. Where did you get that crazy idea?"

Where did you get the crazy idea that I assumed such?"

Well you think that "the people that really work" earn more than they are getting paid currently. So where do you think that money originally comes from? It comes from revenue. It can't come from anywhere else in a successful business.

You have said often that the executives should be paid less (from revenue) and the "workers" (as if executives don't really work) should be paid more (from revenue).

So what percentage of revenue should go to what you call "the worker" and what percentage should go to the executives?
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MarkJames
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Message Posted: Nov 16, 2014 9:50:45 AM

<<The overtime wages paid to the employees are actually more efficient that hiring more workers at 40 hours per week. It's actually the opposite of what many businesses assume, businesses that won't let employees work a single minute of overtime.>>

Due to the cyclic nature of demand in many industries it makes more sense to have existing workers work overtime and/or use temps, subs and on-call workers to meet temporary, seasonal or unexpected demand.

Due to shortages of skilled/multi-skilled workers (willing to work for wages businesses can support) many existing workers end up working a lot of overtime and businesses turn down or lose a lot of work.

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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Nov 16, 2014 2:26:22 AM

I75at7AM - "You like to point out a couple of highly-paid corporate execs and assume that all people in company management are in that same income percentile. There are very very few "at the top", and that's why they say 'there's room at the top!'"

So then, in your opinion, there is no income and wealth disparity problem? It isn't true that wages for the vast majority of working people are stagnant and most of the benefits from economic growth are going only to the few?
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rjhenn
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Nov 16, 2014 2:25:32 AM

nstrdnvstr - "You assume that a set percentage of revenue belongs to the employee from the start. Where did you get that crazy idea?"

Where did you get the crazy idea that I assumed such?
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SemiSteve
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Message Posted: Nov 15, 2014 9:55:45 AM

I-75, you make a good point. More people are employed at small business than in large corps. But since large corps weild so much power they drive a disproportionate chunk of the economy, as Weasle points out. If those pieces you make are purchased by a biggie then they mark em up and pocket the lion's share of YOUR work, and therefore some of your wealth before you ever see the tax man take some of the more visible part.
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I75at7AM
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Message Posted: Nov 15, 2014 8:52:07 AM

Rj, in this industry, there are almost exclusively small companies. The number of people employed in small companies versus large companies isn't even close. The larger companies tend to be names you may have heard of, such as automakers and large concerns such as GE and Emerson. But their supplier base is mostly small companies and we have many times more employees than they do. So trying to interpolate up the "problem" of unequal wealth distribution just doesn't work here. You like to point out a couple of highly-paid corporate execs and assume that all people in company management are in that same income percentile. There are very very few "at the top", and that's why they say "there's room at the top!"

Weasle, your Nobel Laureate can sit in his ivory tower and pontificate until he retires on his public sector pension and double dips back into the system by "working" during his retirement. He probably doesn't have a lick of real world experience in the private sector economy, so I pay little heed to his lofty pronouncements.

[Edited by: I75at7AM at 11/15/2014 8:53:20 AM EST]
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nstrdnvstr
Champion Author Twin Cities

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Message Posted: Nov 14, 2014 9:39:03 PM

rjhenn, "
Funny, but you don't seem to have any objection to having the wealth you create "confiscated and given to someone else" by those who do so "just because" they have the power to take it for themselves."

You assume that a set percentage of revenue belongs to the employee from the start. Where did you get that crazy idea?
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Weaslespit
Champion Author Cincinnati

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Message Posted: Nov 14, 2014 9:25:42 PM

"You can't beat my facts with your fanciful fallacies."

Then care to respond to the facts brought forth by the Nobel Laureate I linked to?

I noticed you were strangely silent regarding that one, which is unusual for you.
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