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« Scattershots – 12jan2014 (updated 15jan14) | Main | Did you know? – 18jan2014 (updated 20jan14) »

14 January 2014

Comments

fish

Our Mathematical Universe: My Quest for the Ultimate Nature of Reality (2013)


Sigh....stop adding to my reading list!

Joe Koyote

"another turn down on our educational system CORE" -- Finland has the highest ranked educational system in the world. They also have the lowest levels of childhood poverty. America is ranked 34th out of 35 developed nations (slightly beating out Romania) in per capita childhood poverty. Perhaps the quality of our educational outcomes would improve more by continuing the War on Poverty and stopping the one on education.

Russ Steele

JoeK@07:06PM

The number of unmarried mothers with children in Finland is about 17% in 2000, the latest numbers I could find.

In the US out of 12.2 million single parent families in 2012, more than 80% were headed by single mothers.

Do you think maybe that might have something to do with the declining scores, the best predictor of a child success in school is a stable family, with a mother and a father.

We have spend trillions in the War on Poverty and the percentage still in poverty is about the same as when the war started 50 years ago, Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Was 50 tries enough, or should the insanity continue?

Bonnie McGuire

Interesting. Encouraging economic freedom (free enterprise ) is what made America prosper, and why so many seeking a better life wanted to come here from other countries. Then our government did everything (using activists) to ruin free enterprise and opportunity with excessive, expensive regulations...encouraging a corporate government. Last century German Nationalism. It's easier to control and manipulate people in a few big businesses than thousands of small ones. When senior Bush told us we were going into the new world order would not be communism nor capitalism he failed to mention nationalism...the national socialists of Germany. Hmmmm. Not only has our economy been ruined from within, but while our young men are sent all over the world to fight wars for freedom, thousands of poor people have been pouring over our borders that need to be cared for. It's something that has been repeated over and over throughout history. Survival is the name of the game, so they will support those who promise to give them what they need and want. Those who work hard are regulated and taxed to provide everything. Gradually the prosperous freedom loving culture is transformed into one of slavery. We can hope for the best, but cannot ignore the basic laws of cause and effect repeated over and over throughout human history.

George Rebane

From National Reviw Online - "With little fanfare, the federal government has posted its annual compilation of birth data, including out-of-wedlock births. Here’s the bad news (essentially unchanged from last year): Preliminary data indicate that 40.7 percent of all 2012 births were out-of-wedlock, which is appalling, and there are vast differences among racial and ethnic groups. Among non-Hispanic blacks, the figure is highest, at 72.2 percent; for American Indians/Alaska Natives, it’s 66.9 percent; 53.5 percent for Hispanics; 29.4 percent for non-Hispanic whites; and a mere 17.1 percent for Asians/Pacific Islanders."

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/360990/latest-statistics-out-wedlock-births-roger-clegg

Joe Koyote

"percentage still in poverty is about the same as when the war started 50 years ago," Since this is the 50th anniversary (something like that) of Johnson's war on Poverty, there has been a lot of talk and analysis about its success. Despite growing numbers, when adjusted for inflation and population increase, the number of people living in America in poverty has actually decreased from 23% to 16%.

Yes, family is the best predictor of educational success and those who live in poverty don't seem to have very much of it. So it is logical to think that decreasing poverty would improve family and educational outcomes. Nobody likes to pay taxes, but so what? We are still going to have to pay them, so the question becomes one of priority. I personally would rather have my tax dollars go to some individual who is on hard times, than to a bloated and wasteful military. It's just a matter of personal preference. I think a good solution would be to have check boxes on income tax returns indicating what general categories my money could or could not be spent on.

fish

Despite growing numbers, when adjusted for inflation and population increase, the number of people living in America in poverty has actually decreased from 23% to 16%.

I'd be interested to see how the definition has shifted over the period in question.


I personally would rather have my tax dollars go to some individual who is on hard times, than to a bloated and wasteful military.

Agreed.


It's just a matter of personal preference. I think a good solution would be to have check boxes on income tax returns indicating what general categories my money could or could not be spent on.

I wouldn't hold my breath.

Scott Obermuller

"I personally would rather have my tax dollars go to some individual who is on hard times, than to a bloated and wasteful military."

Depends on why they are having a hard time. If it's self-inflicted, why should I be forced to give them anything?
I also, had a 'war on poverty' - not a dime of govt hand out expended. I won. It involved self denial, discipline and hard work. Uh oh, where did all the lefties go? I thought they wanted to win the war on poverty?

George Rebane

The purported $15,000,000,000,000 cost of the War on Poverty is over three times the cost of all our real wars. But the actual cost has been much higher than even that for the touted 'gains' that on their face are blatantly hokey.

Ryan Mount

Real Singularity. Right Now. This is where it starts and then moves up the economic ladder.

http://thelibertarianrepublic.com/meet-robotic-minimum-wage-kiler/

George Rebane

RyanM 946am - Great minds and all that ;-) Please see 15jan14 update to Scattershots.
http://rebaneruminations.typepad.com/rebanes_ruminations/2014/01/scattershots-12jan2014.html

Ryan Mount

I beg your pardon for the repeat.

I have a Jack Kemp-sorta proposal for our minimum wage issue. It's more of a bluff, but I do mean it in all seriousness: Raise the minimum wage to a level that doesn't require workers to get public assistance. (not sure what that would be, but certainly more). I mean, we're (individuals and businesses) are already sporting the funding via taxes, so why not pay up front where a business can readily manage their liabilities like wages? And then give them chance to reduce labor costs through automation.

Joe Koyote

I think it was one of the ice cream guys (Ben or Jerry) who, as an experiment opened a T-shirt sweatshop in LA. Starting wage was $12 an hour with good health coverage, retirement, profit sharing ,etc. It raised the retail price of a $25 t-shirt by one buck, something that would hardly be noticed by most folks. Unlike a lot of fast-food and big box workers, who barely get minimum wage, the workers did not need food stamps or other public assistance to feed their families. I have read during the fast food workers 15 minutes in the spotlight recently, that instituting similar compensation packages through out the fast food industry would only raise the cost of a Big Mac by a quarter.

Ryan Mount

Joe, that's correct as long as we're not talking about commodities. Now, there are lots of different ice creams (that the plural of ice cream?) out there, but it's hard to find any better than Ben and Jerry's.

Generally from what I read, raising the minimum wage even by a significant amount does not impact margins, particularly in a Fast Food sector. (I used to manage a Burger King right out of high school, and this is the case). As long as volumes are high, labor costs, which in the BK franchise at the time was aiming for 15%, is not an issue.

As long as we keep our eyes on the working poor, who do indeed make a sizable chunk of social services beneficiaries, then I find my Jack Kemp-ish solution to be practical. Pay them up front, and take the services away by means testing them.

When talking about other demographics, the elderly, in infirm, children who require services, we just have to pay for that.

Deadbeats? Hard to find a reason to help them out.

George Rebane

RyanM 1035am - I assume your proposal would also include a commensurate tax reform so that such a minimum wage would not just be another add-on under the current spending regime.

Bill Tozer

I think raising the minimum wage and the entire minimum issue does not amount to much in the grand scheme of things. First, minimum wage jobs were never/are never supposed to anything but temporary, transitional employment as one moves up the food chain. Second, very few Americans actually work for minimum wage. They either make more than the minimum wage (aka Mickey Dees, the Whooper Places and Wal-Mart))or stay at minimum wage jobs for a brief time.

God help the poor soul who looks at a minimum wage job as one's future.

Scott Obermuller

"And then give them chance to reduce labor costs through automation."
Free loaders are currently pulling down (all benies tabulated) 30K to 50K a year. If that's the minimum wage, automation will sky rocket and small family run eateries will clean up. The small businesses that require some amount of minimum wage employees will find another way. So - yes, there will be a small amount of much better off minimum wage employees and a large amount of jobs gone. poof. The law of supply and demand is as stubborn as the laws of gravity. Defy it at your peril. Have fun.

Bill Tozer

Eli Whitney put a lot of very low paid people out of work when he invented the cotton gin. The Industrial Revolution and the Mothers of Invention are as American as hot dog eating contests. The good thing about a young person making baloney sandwiches on the assembly line is it gives them good motivation to never do that again.

I always felt sorry for Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox.. Can't hold back the tide or hold back diarrhea despite one's best efforts and fortitude. John Henry was a steel driving man..."was" is the operative word.

Gerald Fedor

Unfortunately Bill those baloney sandwich makers are now cashiers at B&C and Kmart, while trying to support themselves, let alone any kids.....

If you make @$8.00 per hour that means that you'll be making @$16,000 per year, that's $1,333 (before taxes), and if you figure that you'll lose @$200.00 in taxes then you'll be making @$1,130 a month or @13,500 per year. Then you have the payments on the ACA which will cost you an additional $375, so then your at @$13,100 per year.

Let's talk about rent then (let's say you're alone) as you'll have to pay $500 per month, for a yearly total of $6,000, which then brings you down to $7,100.

Most people need a phone as most jobs will not keep you if you don't have a phone, so if you have the best plan on the market then you're at $50 per month for a total of $600 per year, so now you're at $6,500.

Next you'll need to eat cheaply, which means you can spend $4.00 per meal, 3 meals a day, for a yearly total of $4380 which means that you're now at $2,120 left over.

Clothing, including shoes is typically priced at $750 per year (this includes washing of clothing) which then brings you down to $1,370.

You can't get a car, because the insurance will cost you (on a POS Car) a minimum of $500 per year, and the average fuel cost on 10,000 miles per year with a 30 mpg car would be @$1,200, for a total of @$1,700, which means that you'll be in the hole @$330.

Let's say you have kids, so how does this work then? You must think that kids don't cost anything and are presents from GOD?

When you get a chance go and look at the people at B&C or Kmart, as you'll be amazed at just how many are 35yo people, just trying to get by.

Bill Tozer

Mr. Fedor, I agree with all your figures. It is tough to make it alone, very tough on 8 bucks/hour. I figure many are spouses and they have 2 incomes, but if one is single or a single parent, then they are just on a treadmill going nowhere except sinking slowly underwater.
Then add one rent increase, one blown tire, one kid's field trip and you fall behind and don't catch up. Need to work 2 jobs.


So, what is the solution? Pay them 15 bucks an hour? That still won't cut it, unless they work for cash. Some say if you add up all the benefits a person with a kid on welfare makes, its over 40k a year, others say 50k. It ain't easy no doubt. It don't come easy.

Bill Tozer

Food for thought this fine morning. Not indented or directed at anyone. May or may not fit into the topic at hand.

"Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” – Abraham Lincoln

“If you look for the bad in people expecting to find it, you surely will.” – Abraham Lincoln

“Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other one thing.” – Abraham Lincoln

Scott Obermuller

I'm not real concerned about the singularity. The run up to that point is what is happening all around us right now. We all operate under a set of laws that will dictate reality to us regardless of what ever made up laws we humans tack on. Material goods and the energy to make it all go need to come from some where. Human ideas and effort are still needed. The amount of folks in this country that do absolutely nothing to contribute to our material wealth is quite large and unsustainable. I'm not attacking anyone here. I'm not blaming the poor. I'm simply stating a fact. The whole plot is kept going at the moment by creating 'wealth' out of thin air. And a bunch of potent machinery that is kept at the ready to make large holes in the ground any place on earth we choose. The left and the progressives want to diminish our ability to make holes as unnecessary and to continue or accelerate the 'wealth from nothing' part. Or they wish to 'redistribute' the wealth. This seems to be a moral and righteous path to them that works just fine. (social justice) The rest of the world, and the laws of nature, do not agree. We will pay for all of this nonsense eventually. The 'poor' and 'persons of color' as the left loves to describe them will be hit the worst. Because the attitude and skill sets that are necessary for contributing to a sustainable future are lacking in far too many folks. The very best govt programs can not make up for this deficit. The modern, progressive govt, in fact, makes things worse by declaring that folks are owed material things that will be handed them by the govt. This is the cruelest thing a govt can do.
As we continue on a path of an increasingly complex technological world, the "I am owed" mindset cripples the average human to be nothing more than a dumb beast - fit only to be kept alive as a pet or as a penned barn yard animal serving it's master in order to be kept alive.

Ryan Mount


My assumptions always start with this: small changes can have big long term impacts; however that should not stop us from thinking about the big ideas.

George 04:50> I'm assume your proposal would also include a commensurate tax reform so that such a minimum wage would not just be another add-on under the current spending regime.

We would have to fix that as well. I want a Consumption or Flat Tax, which just ain't gonna happen because too many people get cookies out of the Progressive Tax cookie jar. AND it a social engineering tool of the government. Anyhow, my proposal is in the spirit of a Consumption Tax. Barring that, we'd have to adjust the tax code more towards things like earned income credits (if necessary) and less towards deductions. (that will probably never fly either).

Scott at 09:08 PM> Free loaders are currently pulling down (all benies tabulated) 30K to 50K a year...

Let's try to undo that by starting with people who are willing to work. One thing at a time. If one is making a living minimum wage, under my proposal, government entitlements drop off or disappear. As a practical matter, and not just a bitchy one, wouldn't we rather our tax money going to people who are working? Aren't the fruits of work much sweeter than sitting on the couch collecting the same money?

BTW, even the most ardent demand-side economists admit that raising the minimum wage, especially to the levels I'm suggesting, will eliminate jobs. So this is one place where Rebane's bloggers and Keynesians come together. Wow.

However the long term, according to them, it will raise workers out of the poverty level and have positive long term effects. That is, if one does not subscribe to George's Singularity projections which most Demand-siders don't.

George Rebane

Four years ago in these discussions I offered everyone a simple spreadsheet tool to play with the numbers. You can download it and see what has come to pass since then, and then put in your own numbers to see what has to be to make sense of the future. Enjoy.
http://rebaneruminations.typepad.com/rebanes_ruminations/2009/05/fiscal-disaster-calculator.html

And today the prestigious Economist dispenses the following wisdom about the pre-Singularity years (post updated). Bit by piece the media are beginning to see what has been known to RR readers for some years now.
http://www.economist.com/news/leaders/21594298-effect-todays-technology-tomorrows-jobs-will-be-immenseand-no-country-ready?fsrc=nlw|hig|1-16-2014|7536685|34995500

Bonnie McGuire

George thank you for providing this wonderful site where people have intelligent conversations. Very uplifting mentally and spiritually.

George Rebane

BonnieM 146pm - Thank you for those kind words Bonnie. They mean a lot, especially when I am trying to divide up my day among several interesting and rewarding projects (and chores).

Scott Obermuller

"Let's try to undo that by starting with people who are willing to work."
The number of those inclined to work varies wildly depending upon personal situations and attitudes. A bipartisan iron-firm commitment at every govt level to cut off all benies at a certain future date for all able bodied citizens would change the numbers of those willing to work by a dramatic degree.
"wouldn't we rather our tax money going to people who are working?"
Working at what? If I'm paying for it, I want it to be something I would freely want to have done and be beneficial to me. Otherwise, it's just money taken from me at gun point to put warm bodies in a room to push papers or folks standing around outside near some sort of wasteful govt hole in the ground.
Artificially jacking up wages is just another form of welfare, albeit one that I can at least boycott on most occasions.
Can some one explain why a private financial agreement between 2 consenting adults in this country that involve the time and labor of one or both said individuals is any business of any govt entity?

George Rebane

ScottO 831am - No acceptable explanation offered. I understand govt intrusion through the mind of central planners. Those with claimed moral underpinnings hold first and foremost that the citizen should be saved from himself through the greater wisdom of the elites. And it goes down from there, at every stage apologizing why more controls are needed, and why it is all for the greatest good for the greatest number.

The endpoints of implementing such a social order brought us the hundreds of millions dead, and the road to such endpoint looks like what our governments at all levels are doing today.
http://rebaneruminations.typepad.com/rebanes_ruminations/2013/02/ideologies-and-governance-a-structured-look.html

Ryan Mount

Scott-

The reason this came up at all was because of the automatic burger machine. And I want to hasten its arrival. So I suppose that makes me even more cynical. And I have a proposal that will get this ball moving. Also, I was thinking this could also function to get the "working poor" off entitlements. And also to stop the constant bitching about Walmart employees having to use supplemental government benefits. This constant complaining is more torture than a Dr. Oz marathon.

The goals are these:

- Reward people who work/provide an incentive for able bodied people to work with a wage that enables them to get off government assistance (pay up front at consumption, where the economy is more efficient, as opposed to the back end, after the fact Progressive Tax)

- Stop tax money from going into a Black Hole, hopefully lowering the tax burden. (I'd like it replaced)

> Working at what?

I'm constantly hearing that there is a dis-incentive to not work because not working pays $50K/year. So to answer your question directly: ANYTHING other than nothing for starters. But I'm, for the record, talking about people who are already productive workers. Not the couch sitter. That's an issue (the chronic couch sitter) with separate circumstances that requires a different solution. Perhaps one as radical as you propose.

Quickly:

> cut off all benies at a certain future date for all able bodied citizens

And replace with what? More hospital ER visits? Church food drives? I think we should more conservative and targeted than this, like increasing the minimum wage to a point that gets able-bodied workers off the government teat.

> Artificially jacking up wages is just another form of welfare

Categorically no. It doesn't impact the economy the way people thinks it does. Besides, if my supply-side instincts are correct, a more efficient (and practical) way to do this would be to pay people more and get them off the expense side of the government ledger.

> Can some one explain why a private financial agreement between 2 consenting adults in this country that involve the time and labor of one or both said individuals is any business of any govt entity?

You mean other than labor laws?(Children, overtime, right to organize) Safety? And, well, wages. But plenty of people do this under the table. But for larger economies, this is not practical. You are free to hire an unbonded person to clean off your roof, but if s/he falls off? If a McDonalds employee is off the clock, and slips and falls in the kitchen?

Scott Obermuller

Ryan - my first point involving cutting off benies was hypothetical. I wasn't advocating it. It was in response to your comment about those 'willing to work' and I wanted to point out the big difference in some one claiming they are willing to work and those who are actually willing to work. Hint - people that have a job tend to make up 99.99% of folks that are actually willing to work. The other small percentage will soon have a job.
"ANYTHING other than nothing for starters" Really? You'd be willing to shell out money to have some one dig holes in your front yard and then fill them back in?
Artificially jacking up wages causes higher prices and inflation. If you don't agree, then please explain where the extra money comes from to pay for the increased wages. If you think the govt run benies and welfare complex is going to reduce itself and have you pay less taxes, you are sadly mistaken.
Your last response is a jumble of not being able to read and missing the point completely. Any issue regarding pay and hours worked are part of an agreement between two parties. You and anyone who wants can 'organize' to your heart's content. Everyone has the right not to be a party to your 'organization'. If some one agrees to go up on my roof and they fall and get hurt, I'll call an ambulance. The injured party will pay all expenses. They got hurt, not me.
I have this strange idea that I'm capable of deciding what sort of compensation I'll agree to if I want to let some one else benefit from my labor. I'd love to know why you think you have a right to tell me differently.

Ben Emery

George,
I never replied on your comment. I cannot recall if it was seen and forgotten or never seen at all. So I thought it could get picked up here if you wanted.

Here was the exchange to refresh your memory

10 January 2014 at 06:23 PM Ben Emery
"Your position or complaint is what governments do, they provide services and create laws. Lets say we did it, we cut government spending to about 10% of GDP.
Paint that picture for me, how does it look?"

10 January 2014 at 06:53 PM George Rebane
“but consider if total government would be constrained to live withing 20% of GDP. Let's divide that - feds 10%, states 5%, local 5%. The feds would be in charge of national security, and major infrastructure funding/maintenance (primarily in transportation and, say food and drug safety). The states determine how to allocate social services down to the local levels. The states would, of course, be completely in charge of how education is handled. Does that give enough to start chewing on in this discussion?”

I went looked around the world whose government spending to % of GDP was 20% or lower to see how their countries were fairing and how they prioritized their spending. Outside of a few the results were nothing I would want to recreate in the US. Here is the list of nations and their % government spending to GDP.

Bangladesh 15.9%

Burma 8%

Cambodia 13.9%

Cameroon 18.5%

Central African Republic 15.5%

Ivory Coast 19.7%

Dominican Republic 19.1%

Ethiopia 19.4%

Guatemala 13.7%

Guinea 17.4%

Haiti 18.2%

Hong Kong 18.6%

Indonesia 19.2%

Laos 18.2%

Macau 14.9%

Madagascar 18.5%

Nepal 19.7%

Pakistan 19.3%

Panama 19.5%

Paraguay 14.8%

Peru 17.3%

Philippines 17.3%

Singapore 17%

Taiwan 18.5%

Thailand 17.7%

Togo 19.5%

Turkmenistan 12.3%

Uganda 17.8%

Joe Koyote

Cutting government seems like a good idea in theory but it has never worked especially during hard times. We must remember that the research on which the global austerity movement was based was flawed. Historically, it seems as if the only way to get large economies going is for the government to tax and spend, like it or not, it works. Once again it is a matter of priorities. I would rather increase taxes on the wealthy and put the money into infrastructure in America than sweatshops on the Pacific rim or into the pockets of Wall Street bankers who gambled and lost. America is in a hole not because of too much government but because big money would rather invest and gamble in financial instruments than manufacturing or R&D because they can get a better return on their money. The problem is not the lack of money, it's the lack of desire on the part of investors to create jobs. Government issues are just the excuse being foisted upon the public. Unfortunately, some folks actually believe it to be true.

fish

...... it seems as if the only way to get large economies going is for the government to tax and spend, like it or not, it works.

Japan would like a word with you Joe!

George Rebane

BenE 1020pm - Another dollop of your flawless logic showing that the reason those countries are in the second and third tiers is that their governments don't tax and spend sufficiently - or did I misunderstand?

JoeK 901am - Boy, did you nail me. Yep, I'm one of those folks who "actually believe it to be true." Since governments consume rather than create wealth - the bigger the more so - and they all now borrow prodigiously to spend beyond their ability to extract tribute/taxes from their citizens, how do you propose continuing this policy will ever get those loans repaid? (Most of us here know the answer, but it's always fun to have a collectivist's recounting of it.)

Bill Tozer

Ben, you were almost correct when you said recently that income, GPD, productivity and income growth grow in lockstep....that is until about the time you were born. Yes, in the 3 decades following WW2 that was true.

Not anymore. Its not about income inequality, its about jobs. Obama is not the only leader of our Western Civilization that is scrambling to kick start job creation in the rear. All leaders are going it right now and have no solution. Jobs (with Singularly in mind)is THE defining issue of our time.

Following the 3 decades since WW2, we have had emerging economics complete with our labor (think China and low wage regions) and automation began to steal jobs. Since the 80's we have had median income lag behind productivity and GDP.

At the same time, the earning power between the educated and uneducated began to grow/widen. Talking generally here. ONLY those with a college degree have increased their earning power since then.

The uneducated/unskilled will continue to fall behind. THERE IS NOT STOPPING IT here or around the globe.

I wish you would reflect a bit on the the reality of the here and now and quit diving into the growing middle class of yesteryear and look at today and tomorrow for solutions. We all know the problems.

I agree with your sentiments and Mr. Koyote's as well. In the coming years we may find the cure for diabetes, have drones deliver a bag of groceries, and many wonderful inventions that will exponentially grow (tech)and change our lives more rapidly that you or I can imagine. Until that time, it does no good to point this out to the factory worker who lost his job forever.

The low skilled low educated are doomed. Period. Living off the land is so yesterday if you consider the growing rules and regs and expenses. Even China lost factory jobs last year. We could wall of the US, start trade wars, empty the pocket of Mac Scrooge Duck and whatever you mind can imagine, but it will not accomplish anything.

Income inequality is a political red herring used to rally the populace and distract us from the real issue of income growth via J-O-B-S.

http://www.hoover.org/publications/policy-review/article/123566

Joe Koyote

" Since governments consume rather than create wealth" -- That would depend on your definitions. While paying for infrastructure doesn't exactly create wealth it does allow others to more efficiently do so. We also know that government "creates" (or transfers if you prefer) wealth for certain individuals through no-bid contracts, cost overruns, unchecked fraud, etc. as well as legitimate spending. And while you may disagree with my use of the term "create", the point remains the same, some folks get stinking rich on the government contract teat, yet our society continues to berate some down and out individual who needs food stamps or unemployment benefits in order to eat. If private enterprise is so great at creating wealth, why is that wealth so concentrated among a very few individuals? I would think that a proper measurement of wealth creativity would be how wealth is created for an entire society, top to bottom, not just those at the top. We all know that it works for making the rich richer, but as of late, private enterprise has done little for everyone else. While over the last few decades the wealthy have seen their income increase upwards of 250%, working people have seen their wages and buying power reduced by 15-20% over that same time period. I don't call that creating wealth, I call it hoarding wealth.

Bill Tozer

Keynesian theory of economics has been bastardized to a state where it NOT recognizable. In a way, Mr. Koyote is correct. But, this is how it should work and the original intent and purpose.

When the good times are rolling, government should cut like a MoFo and save, save, save. Rainy day fund and all that jazz. But, when the rainy day comes, government should open the flood gates for a brief period of time.

Now, can anyone tell me what the cotton picking business is government doing growing in rain or shine? It gets bigger and bigger like Jack's Beanstalk. Sunset clauses? Bunch of Malarkey. Once they get their sleazy hands on one dollar, they never get it back. And if there is a reserve or surplus somewhere, anywhere, we got hundreds of members of Congress and the Executive Branch getting woodies and smacking their lips over how to spend it as fast as they can. Congress never ever has seen a dollar they consider worthyto put away for the storms that be a'brewin'.

Bill Tozer

Well, somebody is set to make a few hundred grand more. Its not the workers, its not the company, nor is it the clients. Its the thugs. They get you coming and going. Time to look this gift horse in the mouth.

http://watchdog.org/123869/job-union-minimum-wage/

Ben Emery

George,
Let me get this straight. I am wrong for looking around the world to those nations that actually practice your dream policies of low government spending and interference on market forces. Your world view has been tried many times and it consistently results in nations that under developed with massive poverty and corruption.

Todd Juvinall

BenE, could you please lst those countries you speak of in your 6:27 AM?

fish

George,

Let me get this straight. I am wrong for looking around the world to those nations that actually practice your dream policies of low government spending and interference on market forces. Your world view has been tried many times and it consistently results in nations that under developed with massive poverty and corruption.

George....and Ben really wants to get this straight apparently ....spending of tax revenues (and all that money we've borrowed too!) on the government social programs that Ben deems necessary didn't exceed 20% of GDP until the 1970's (each war in which the US participated resulted in spikes that exceeded the 20% threshold currently under discussion). Most honest historians regard the years prior to this transition era as the most economically free, most entrepreneurial, and productive era in this nation history.

I wonder if when Ben is finished demonstrating how I am a fascist (I'll assume he's still doing his research) by showing how my postings are sympathetic to, or an endorsement of the 14 points provided by Dr. Britt in the thread on Ruminations - 8jan2014 (updated 9jan14) how he will square the circle regarding his claiming to be a devotee of the constitution and constitutional government while apparently arguing for continued rampant unconstitutional government spending.

(Gentlemen: Now would be an excellent time to don your fire resistant garments and goggles! An entire field of strawmen are scheduled to burn presently! You have been warned!)

Ben Emery

Fish,
The more you comment the clearer it becomes you are a authoritarian fascist/corporatist.

Your analysis of when government spending exceeded 20% is exactly when I point out our government began the corporate America policies.

No I am not finished just busy with this January summer.

Ben Emery

On another note, when ever I bring up the discrimination, suppression, and oppression of people of color I am told reminded that was looong ago.

Lets watch this together for many of our elders today remember vividly.

Remembering the ideals of Martin Luther King Jr on this day is once again ignored by the blog host. Not necessarily due to racism but do to apathy I suspect.

Eyes On The Prize
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iVB2AlVpt0I

Todd Juvinall

Waiting on those examples BenE. If you don't supply them you are then exposed as a total BSer.

fish

The more you comment the clearer it becomes you are a authoritarian fascist/corporatist.

Still working on documenting my fascist tendencies. I look forward to your report.


Your analysis of when government spending exceeded 20% is exactly when I point out our government began the corporate America policies.

Which is exactly opposite the claim you made earlier. Corporate policies or not, you argue that the 20% of GDP dividing line is where corruption and poverty are reduced or eliminated and then tick off a list of countries that spend below this threshold. The United States spent less than 20% of GDP for most of its history and was undeniably freer and more productive but you argue that this is not the kind of society in which you want to live. Are you making the argument that you actually prefer the corporatist United States and its spending policies?

"I am wrong for looking around the world to those nations that actually practice your dream policies of low government spending and interference on market forces. Your world view has been tried many times and it consistently results in nations that under developed with massive poverty and corruption."


No I am not finished just busy with this January summer.

Fair enough! Nice to know that your spreading of bullshit isn't limited to your blog comments.

George Rebane

BenE 627am - As past circlings of this barn have demonstrated, there is no productive argument here because both sides view history and the world through entirely different lenses. And the question of 'where are the nations that practice your exact social order?' gets repeated ad nauseam. In the realworld perfections must be replaced by approximations and judged by their proximity to the assumed ideal. The black/white nature of debate provides for little progress.

BenE 856am - Maybe you are right, and I am remiss. I am perhaps more grateful for the symbol of the man and his received social philosophy, than my reverence for the glory that has now been bestowed on his person. There were many equally sacrificing laborers in the civil rights vineyards, but MLK's image has now been burnished so bright that he outshines them into obscurity. Nevertheless, today is a day we should honor them all, and not let their works be memorialized by the current travesty of subsequent public policies that have come to punish the very people they sought to relieve. But for some reason, honoring MLK and other black civil rights leaders is taken as explicit adoption of the much promoted shibboleth that 'equal opportunity gives evidence only through equal outcome'.

Russ Steele

The Daily Mail has an article that applies to this post.

Is 2014 the year YOUR job will be taken by a robot? 'Jobocalpyse' set to strike as droids are trained to flip burgers, pour drinks - and even look after our children

Experts are predicting a 'jobocalypse' as robots take over manual jobs, while scientists at Cambridge warn that machines should have their intelligence limited to stop them outsmarting us.

A new version of the movie RoboCop (out February 12) shows us a future where technology revolutionises law enforcement, but that is just the tip of the iceberg for robotics.

'I believe we are the inflection point where robotics are going to change everything you know and do,' says Ben Way, author of Jobocalypse, a book about about the rise of the robots, told MailOnline.

If you have one of these jobs, or a member of your family has one of these jobs, you may want to start thinking about a career change.

1. BARMAN: THE MOOD-SENSING BOT THAT WILL MIX YOU A DRINK... AND CAN DETECT IF YOU NEED TO MAKE IT A DOUBLE

2. BABYSITTER: THE INTERACTIVE BOT THAT CAN LOOK AFTER CHILDREN

3. MUSICIAN: THE ROBOT BAND THAT CAN RECREATE YOUR FAVOURITE SONGS PERFECTLY EVERY TIME

4. CROP-PICKER AND FARM HAND: DROIDS THAT CAN HARVEST GRAPES, ROUND UP CATTLE - AND EVEN KILL

5. DELIVERY DRIVER: INTRODUCING THE SELF-DRIVE CAR

6. FACTORY WORKER: THE DRONES MAKING HUMANS OBSOLETE

7. DOCTOR AND NURSE: ROBOTS WHO CAN SERVE PATIENTS - AND EVEN PERFORM SURGERY

8. TEACHER: CLASSROOM BOTS ON A GLOBAL SCALE

9. POSTMAN: DRONES THAT KNOW WHAT YOU'VE BOUGHT - AND WILL BEAT YOU HOME WITH IT

10. SOLDIERS: FROM HELPFUL ROBOTS TO DYSTOPIAN ROBOTIC SOCIETIES

You can read the whole article here. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2542113/Will-robot-jobocalypse-make-YOU-obsolete-2014-year-droid-takes-job-say-experts.html#ixzz2r5xttzWE

Please read the full article before commenting, you will appear much smarter. Note the photos of existing robots.

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