Welcome login | signup
Language en es fr
OccupyForum

Forum Post: Replace Capitalism with Democracy

Posted 2 years ago on March 3, 2012, 1:05 a.m. EST by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

The root cause of nearly all the country's problems is lack of income. Income is enormously important. It determines your standard of living, quality of life, political power and how much freedom you have. Lack of income is the primary cause of most of our problems in education, healthcare, housing, poverty, inequality, crime, political power, low standard of living, neighborhood blight, unemployment, justice.

But the scandal is that people don't lack income because they don't produce enough. They lack income because most of their income is unfairly taken from them. They are exploited.

So the solution to nearly all the country's problems is simple: stop exploitation. The solution is to give people the right to keep 100% of what they produce. Doing this would mean:

Eliminating exploitation would give every worker a job that makes them wealthy, they would no longer lack income.

We can eliminate exploitation by getting Congress to simply pass a "Jobs Bill" which authorizes the Fed to provide whatever investment money is necessary to launch enough new democratic companies to fully employ everyone who wants to work in one.

A democratic company is just a company that gives you the right to equal ownership and to keep 100% of what you produce. It is a company that doesn't exploit.

Doing this will give all workers the freedom to choose whether they want to work for a capitalist firm where they are exploited or a democratic firm where they are not.

It could create what economics Professor Gar Alperovitz calls the second American Revolution because it would likely mark the end of capitalism. Nobody will want to continue working for a capitalist firm where they are broke when they have the freedom to work in a democratic firm where they are not.

.

Capitalism Does Not Work

With 50% of the US living in or near poverty, the govt releasing data on wage earners for the first time ever which shockingly shows 50% are making less than $26k, 18% of workers unable to find a full-time job, 55% of workers being wasted in pointless jobs that machines can already do, 1.6 MILLION kids who are homeless, nearly everyone (92%) dissatisfied with the economy, 70% hating their job and 70% having financial problems, it is clear that the economy does not work. Everyone's broke.

But people aren't broke because they're not producing enough. They're broke because capitalism is a system that allows a very small minority to unfairly take the majority of the income that workers produce. It's a system that exploits workers.

Everyone in the US in 2012 should be wealthy. We produce $15.4 trillion in goods and services every year. That is $50,000 per year for every man, woman and child. That is $200,000 per year for a family of 4.

But more importantly, that is $65 per hour for each hour every worker works or $135,000 in yearly income.

The average worker produces $65 in income per hour but only gets paid $16.57 of it. The average worker loses 75% of their income to exploitation. That's why people lack income.

.

Capitalism is the Opposite of Democracy

Capitalism is a system that uses exploitation to concentrate most of the wealth in the hands of the few. These few then naturally use their wealth to rule over society. So capitalism always ends in plutocracy, not democracy.

Democracy is a Greek word. But it is not a Greek word for "voting" or "mob rule" or "majority wins." It is Greek for "people power." A modern liberal democracy means political power and freedom rests with everyone equally.

Since everything you do in society requires money, your income determines how much political power you have and determines how much freedom you have.

A person with $1 billion has 50,000 times more power than a person with $20,000 to get someone elected to government or to lobby government to their cause or to use the media to lobby the public to their cause. And they have 50,000 times more freedom to live how they want - to live in whatever house or neighborhood they want, to drive any car they want, to attend any school they want, to get any medical treatment they want, to pursue any hobby they want, to travel to any place they want or to work any job they want.

A society where some have 50,000 times more political power and freedom than others is not democratic.

Of course, the tiny minority at the top still only have a tiny minority of the vote. But since they use their income to own all the businesses, politicians, governments, and media, they have full control over the public discourse which they effectively use to not only convince the vast majority that the raw deal they are getting is fair, but to also make it taboo to actually question it! So nobody votes what's in their best interest.

.

How To Make Society Democratic

Just like we replaced monarchies (and its private ownership of government) with democracy so the means of law making are equally owned by and accountable to everyone, we should replace capitalism (and its private ownership of the economy) with democracy so the means of production are equally owned by and accountable to everyone.

Doing this would mark the beginning of what Prof. Gar Alperovitz calls the second American Revolution. And making a second revolution happen is surprisingly simple.

One way is to get the Fed to fund a network of democratic companies so workers have the freedom to choose whether they want to work at a capitalist firm or at a democratic firm.

A democratic firm is just a firm that is owned democratically. It is owned equally by the workers which enables it to pay workers based on how much they produce. It is a company that doesn't exploit.

So every worker will have the freedom to join a capitalist firm where you are not an owner, where you only get paid a portion of the income you produce, where half of the income you produce is paid to a small group of people who own all the capital, and where what's left is allocated based on how scarce you are resulting in Kim Kardashian getting paid hundreds of times more than brain surgeons.

Or you can join a democratic firm where you're an equal owner and where income is allocated among workers based on how much they produce.

To allocate income based on production, income in the democratic sector would be allocated based on a democratically approved plan that all the companies participate in and that limits differences in income between workers to only what's necessary to get them to do hard jobs and give their maximum performance in performance based jobs. Doing this would pay workers from $115,000 per year to $460,000 per year, as explained in full by clicking here, for working just 20 hours per week, as explained here.

.

How To Give Workers The Freedom of Choice

Capitalism has a monopoly over society and forces everyone to live in it. A free society should have choice. Workers should have the freedom to choose whether they work in a capitalist firm or a democratic firm. The capitalist sector should have to compete against the democratic sector for workers.

In order to give workers that choice, we just need to elect people to govt who will pass a "jobs bill" (a politically feasible idea) that will authorize the Fed to fund enough these new democratic companies. The Fed currently gives capitalist firms $90 billion per month and has given them trillions over the years. It is only fair that they do the same for democratic firms.

Since workers would get a much better deal in a democratic firm, it would likely be the end of capitalism: Most workers would quit their capitalist firm to work at a democratic one.

.

Investment

Investment in the democratic sector will work differently than the capitalist sector. In the democratic sector, nobody gets paid an income for investing their savings. In order to get paid an income, you must work.

Of course, you need investment money to run an economy. But just like we don't need to pay people to print their own money in order to make sure there's a supply of money in the economy, we don't need to pay people to risk their savings in order to make sure there's a supply of investment money in the economy.

Just like the central bank can provide the economy with the necessary supply of money, it can provide the economy with the necessary supply of investment money. Workers don't need to pay a portion of their income to investors. That means all businesses and loans will be funded with public investment funds as explained here.

.

A DEMOCRATIC SYSTEM WORKS

A democratic system of labor-owned firms works. Mondragon, the most notable example, is a collection of 250 companies with 100,000 workers that has out-competed capitalist firms for 50 years. Economics professors Gar Alperovitz and Richard Wolff are popular advocates of this system who study the success of thousands of labor-owned firms in the US and elsewhere.

.

Links

650 Comments

650 Comments


Read the Rules
[-] 5 points by ChemLady (576) 2 years ago

Interesting approach, you open with an appeal to the greedy and lazy. What kind of socialist utopia are you going to build based on those moral qualities?

[-] 2 points by luparb (290) 2 years ago

What kind of socialist utopia are you going to build based on those moral qualities?

Hopefully it's something different than what we have now: a capitalist utopia with rising poverty, unemployment, stagnating wages, endless war and environmental destruction.

[-] 5 points by ChemLady (576) 2 years ago

I got sucked in on the hope and change thing once already, no more vague promises. Pure socialism doesn't have any real record of success so I'm not buying into a promise of doubling or tripling my pay and cutting my work week in half.

I agree with that response above that it sounds too good to be true, also if it doesn't work we could be worse off. Socialist systems depend on people working at their best, but they will be taken care of you even if they don't. I don't see my fellow man as being altruistic enough for that to succeed.

[-] 0 points by luparb (290) 2 years ago

Capitalism won't happily skip into the future.

Modern civilization is completely unsustainable and is reaching a point where 'business as usual' simply won't be possible.

The alternative economic models are not like items to select from a catalog, they will be the methods in which society transforms into something else.

[-] 4 points by ChemLady (576) 2 years ago

If society totally collapses then something very new may rise up out of the chaos. Otherwise it will probably evolve slowly. We don't have pure capitalism now, we've been adding bits of socialism and regulation for years. That said I don't believe the times are bad enough for people to rise up and make the kind of change being asked for in the post.

[-] 2 points by luparb (290) 2 years ago

Socialism is a force which redistributes wealth and democratizes the economy.

The trend in America and other western nations has been towards more privatization. That is the opposite of socialism.

A truly socialist government is a transitory system intended to distribute the means of self governance to the people.

China is a good example of what pure capitalism looks like, extremely low wages, long hours, and little benefits.

Things aren't bad because of socialism. They are bad because of capitalism.

Blaming socialism is like blaming the soup kitchen for your hunger.

[-] 4 points by ChemLady (576) 2 years ago

I see China as an example of moving from socialism toward capitalism. Although there it is a state controlled socialism. Wages have slowly been improving there. True the west has elevated property rights to the status of human rights through declarations in the UN and European Union. This makes the change to a worker centered socialism difficult at best.

I don't see the fault with either socialism or capitalism, both work great on paper. The fault lies with people, everyone wants more for less. Greed takes over ruining capitalism and sloth wins out destroying socialism. I go back to my original point, appealing to people by offering them more money for less work may get you followers, but the reasons they support socialism doom it to failure.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Your claim that socialism is ruined by sloth is refuted by evidence. Sloth has yet to doom the police, fire, military, NASA, most schools, DARPA, NIH, some hospitals, I could go on.

People are motivated by income and you don't need capitalism to pay people to perform.

[-] -2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

The society I advocate is based on freedom. If you think a moral life is working 80 hours per week to live in poverty, you are free to continue to live that lifestyle. As was mentioned in the post, people are free to take a lower income. So you could still continue to live the capitalist utopia.

[-] 4 points by ChemLady (576) 2 years ago

How do you get there in a society that holds the right to personal property as a matter of law? This is a slight variation of the libertarian-socialist scheme where you confiscate property and then hope everyone works hard for a similar reward.

You don't need a strike, convince your workers to vote in socialists, then just repeal the fifth amendment or change the entire constitution. Have the government give all the business property to the workers. Less potential for violence, it's all nice and legal, a tyranny by the majority, but still legal.

[-] -1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I don't advocate breaking property law or stealing property. If workers decide not to work at a company, that is not stealing. If you don't show up for work, you think your boss is going to get violent with you?

Europe has been voting socialists for 100 years. That has not gotten them anywhere. I'm not saying that I wouldn't vote for people who want to enact this. I'm just saying that is not how the economic system will change.

[-] 4 points by ChemLady (576) 2 years ago

Europe is in great economic shape too isn't it? What happens if it plays out this way; workers here go on strike, their demand is every cent of profit, business shuts down, no job, no pay, everyone looses.

You're not advocating the workers buy into the business by buying up its stock, why not?

[-] -1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Yes, the entire economy comes to a haly except for emergency/critical workers. That is why the strike is so effective. The workers have all the power, they do almost all the work and they are getting a terrible, unfair deal. It needs to change.

Compensating owners in some way is certainly a possibility. But that would be showing them far more compassion than they are showing to everyone else today. What are the owners doing for all the people who are currently in poverty or unemployed?

[-] 4 points by ChemLady (576) 2 years ago

What should they do? Maybe when you have your strike the unemployed will step in. It would be interesting to watch and see what kind of support you get.

[-] 3 points by JPB950 (2254) 2 years ago

Is there any evidence at all your change would provide every worker with an income of $115,000 for only 20 hours work? Where did you get the figures, from the IOSPFYB (Institute Of Statistics Pulled From Your Bottom)?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

We can automate 55% of the jobs we do with existing technology. So if we made a deliberate effort to automate them all, we can reduce the work week to 20 hours.

Read this comment to see how all that was computed:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662013

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago
[-] 3 points by JPB950 (2254) 2 years ago

You're not serious? That $14.5 is our entire GDP! You can't give everything out in pay. Think about how fast things will fall apart. How do the guys that make the steel get paid if the company making cars gives all it's money to the auto workers and doesn't have any left to pay for the steel? Probably wouldn't matter the steel company couldn't pay for the iron ore in the first place, it gave all it's money to the steel workers. I hope nothing in your new economy ever breaks down.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Your understanding of economics is not correct.

When an auto manufacturer buys $10k worth of steel, that means someone in the steel industry is getting paid $10k in income. Everything we spend money on is someone's income. If the money we spend does not land in someone's pocket as income where do you think that money goes?

[-] 3 points by JPB950 (2254) 2 years ago

You've overstated the amount of money you can use for salaries, GDP includes things like depreciation and taxes, payments to foreign entities for services.

I don't suppose it matters anyhow, these changes require some extensive changes in law. I don't think you could round up enough socialists to have much of a shot at it.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

It is odd for people who are not economists and do not know much about economics to insist that they are right about what the GDP is.

Depreciation is expensing an asset. You need to pay someone an income in order to make an asset. And taxes are used to pay the incomes of government workers. GDP equals total income. The only thing you ever pay for is income.

These changes do not require any change in the law. It requires workers willing to strike for these benefits.

And since 97% of worker would get a pay raise, 100% would prefer a 0% mortgage and 50% of them would get a 450% pay raise, there are more than enough workers willing to strike to bring about these changes. Workers just need to be organized.

[-] 3 points by struggleforfreedom80 (6584) 2 years ago

Hear hear, my friend!!

We must abolish Capitalism and replace it with democracy - real democracy that is. I´ve also been writing about this (f.ex here and here )

We need to work for a society where we build democracy from below, making democratic influence proportional to how much things affect you. That means democratic control of workplaces, democratic control of communities, democratic federations of different cooperating communities, and so on.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=el1CdxiDo6M

[-] 0 points by JuanFenito (847) 2 years ago

What? you agree with it? I thought you advocate for a system in which all people make the same income.

This guy is advocating a tiered caste-like system in which people are thrown into three income levels, where some people make four times what others make. How is this at all compatible with what you want?

[-] 0 points by struggleforfreedom80 (6584) 2 years ago

I agree that we have to end capitalism and replace it with democracy.

I´m not necessarily opposed to all suggestions on different amount of remuneration depending on work/effort etc , at least not in a transition phase. This is debated within Libertarian Socialism.

[-] 2 points by JuanFenito (847) 2 years ago

Okay, sure, but it seems a little extreme, some people earning four times what other make. I guess it's better than what we have now.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

What I advocate is that differences in income must be limited to just what is necessary to get people to do difficult or undesirable work and give their maximum effort. That would be the law.

If it can be demonstrated that we do not need to pay people more, than there would be no differences in income. However, I think that is going to be a difficult claim to substantiate.

[-] -1 points by craigdangit (326) 2 years ago

That's what the market does. If something can be done for less money, some one will do it. the problem is when the government tinkers with the market and throws off the market driven balance.

[-] 4 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

spoken like a true zealot. Now I see why religious fanatics and market fundamentalists caucus with the same party, they both believe in utopia, one religious based the other market based.

[-] 0 points by craigdangit (326) 2 years ago

Yes, I believe in a utopia where the rulers can be trusted to redistribute wealth from the rich to the poor without taking any for themselves and every thing will be fair and altruistic! Yay!

[-] 4 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

lol

[-] 3 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

That is not how the market system works!! You think it limits differences to only what is necessary to get people to do difficult work?

You think the only way to get Paul McCartney to live the lifestyle of a rock star is to pay him a billion dollars!?! The only way to get a social networking site is to pay zuckerberg billions? The only way to get someone to play baseball for a living is to pay them tens of millions?

lol

[-] 0 points by craigdangit (326) 2 years ago

It doesn't matter what either of us thinks. If people want to give Derek Jeter ten million dollars, they feel he is worth it. It is none of my business. People will go to games and watch them on TV and benefit the team that much, and if they feel Jeter is worth that much, why should they not be allowed to pay him that much? Suppose people will pay a hundred dollars each to shake hands with Obama. Obama shakes ten thousand hands and makes a million dollars. Who has been wronged? Why do either of us need to step in? Do you dream of an economic system in which people are prevented from engaging in mutually agreed upon economic trades?

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Consumers do not make any kind of statement about how income should be allocated or what workers should get paid when they make purchases. When they buy a baseball ticket, they do it because they think that a game is worth the ticket price. They are not doing it because they think they should make less income at their job so that Jeter can make $25 million per year at his.

If consumers had a choice between paying Price A where they earn $33k at their job and Jeter earns $25 million at his or Price B where they earn at least $115k at their job and Jeter earns $460k at his, then the market would be valuing workers.

And once consumers do have this democratic power to value workers, our current system comes to an end because nobody is going to voluntarily choose to earn $82k less at their job so that Jeter can make $25 million at his.

Capitalism is not a system that pays people fairly or based on how consumers value producers.

Like Al Capone said, America is a thug economy. You take as much as you can and to hell with everyone else. And the more that you have, the easier it becomes to take.

You are paid based on bargaining power. And the amount of bargaining power you get is based mostly on market luck, genetics and heritage, not hard work.

Jeter was born with the ability to play baseball better than everyone else. Donald Trump became rich because his father gave him $50 million. And since markets are unpredictable, the difference between winners and losers is merely luck.

After about a century of the most powerful taking as much as they possibly can, despite deliberate intervention from government, income is so concentrated and so unequal that 97% of all workers now make a below average income.

That is not because everyone in society is a below-average worker.

It is because this system is designed to only work for a very, very small percentage of the hard-working, responsible, effective workers.

That is not a fair system.

Income is compensation for work. The only legitimate, justifiable reason for paying one person more than another is to get them to do more work, to get them to do difficult or undesirable work and to get them to give their maximum effort.

When we limit differences in income to just what is necessary to be an effective incentive, there is enough income to make every citizen wealthy. We would, for example, be able to pay every worker between $115k and $460k per year. And when you make every citizen wealthy, you put an end to nearly every social problem we have.

We don't need to have a thug capitalist system where society is ruled by small handful of private, privileged, wealthy few who managed to use their unfair position of power to take the most.

[-] -1 points by JIFFYSQUID92 (-994) from Portland, OR 2 years ago

I've already told you, UR 2 Stupid.

go

[-] 1 points by JuanFenito (847) 2 years ago

Actually, I did not hear you tell me that, but it does not surprise me considering you appear to be here to add nothing to the movement except trolling and insults to turn others away from joining...

Bye Thrasy, have fun somewhere else.

[-] -1 points by JIFFYSQUID92 (-994) from Portland, OR 2 years ago

What do you have to consider? Hmm?

I think my post landed here unintentionally. Sorry! Unless U used the same rhetoric.

OH, you do!

Otherwise, that would have meant you're off the hook.

I'm like a wasp, I kill spiders.

R U another damn spider?

[-] 0 points by JuanFenito (847) 2 years ago

Hold up, I think there is miscommunication...

Did your post land there accidentally? It doesn't seem to fit in, I thought you were Thrassy because you just showed up and started calling names, but maybe it was accidental

Unless you are serious that I used the same rhetoric? Where?

[-] 1 points by JIFFYSQUID92 (-994) from Portland, OR 2 years ago

Thashy is a virus! don't spell correctly!! Landing??

I believe in Truth ~ Justice ~ and The American Way!

Democracy, Humanity, Equality!

Capitalism needs strict governing or it will rob us blind, like it has under the Bush-Cheney years.

When does the greed stop?

Unite and Win! Unite and Win! 2010 Never EVER Again!!

Image and Vote! Image and Vote! "We the 1%" NOT What They Wrote!!

[-] 0 points by JuanFenito (847) 2 years ago

Huh...? I agree with the things you said...

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

don't post here it's all locked out by negative and positive voting

anything now posted on this thread will invariably be lost in the middle

[-] 2 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

Replace Capitalism with Decency.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I agree!

But what is your idea of decent?

[-] 1 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 2 years ago

Egalitarianism.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I am in 100% agreement with this too!

Do you have any specific ideas on how to create an egalitarian society?

[-] 1 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 2 years ago

Change the way we allocate capital. I don't have any specific ideas myself how to do this, but I realize this is the real problem.

[-] -1 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

Never mind. I forgot our previous exchange.

[-] 2 points by 1169 (204) 2 years ago

Yes

demandthegoodlifedotcom, lot of opposition but slowly people are opening their eyes

[-] 3 points by alterorabolish1 (569) 2 years ago

People are opening their eyes because they are reading and watching links on Facebook and other sources. It seems to be accelerating and hopefully will reach the tipping point soon, forcing the major media to cover it.

Many people will hurt as they wake up to realize that the great USA is not as pure as they have assumed all their life. Starting with the basics like equality and justice, self government will not perish from the earth, but become strong enough to insist that no one dare attempt to defend inequality.

We will feed the hungry, help the sick, and protect the weak. We can even prosper while doing these things. The time is now.

[-] 3 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I would challenge your claim that there is even a lot of opposition.

The libertarian trolls on this website make up a very small percentage of the population. They are brainwashed. You will never convince them.

The vast majority of people in the real world is what matters. And most of them don't care about political ideology. They don't watch ron paul videos or mises propaganda. All they care about is their bottom line and a minimum income of $115k, a 20 hour work week and 0% mortgage will significantly improve their bottom line. So their eyes will be wide open.

[+] -5 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

Yes, it would improve their life. Give me a couple of million and it would improve my life dramatically. Let's just give everyone a one time payment of 2 million dollars. Don't worry about those pesky details of where the money will come from...

[-] 4 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

If you read the post, you would learn the pesky details on where that money comes from.

See the calculation in paying everyone from $115k to $460k:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662000

[+] -7 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

replace Liberals with a lobotomy. Oh wait - that's one in the same.

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 2 years ago

Why would we want to be like (R)epelican'ts?

They are so dumb, they NEED ALEC to write legislation for them.

[-] 0 points by JIFFYSQUID92 (-994) from Portland, OR 2 years ago

i d i o t

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Are you trying to say you are against liberalism? Move to the Middle East if you don't want a liberal society.

Science is better than religion. Treating people equally is better than slavery or preventing women and non land owners from voting. A society that works well for everyone is better than one that does not. A society where everyone is wealthy is better than a society where half are in or close to poverty. Progress and improvement is better than maintaining the status quo and keeping traditions.

Conservatism is backwards. Liberalism is progressing and moving society forward.

Liberalism is superior to conservatism.

[-] 1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

People are not being treated equally when one group is favored over another. You cant increase wealth by dividing it. Liberalism is Tyranny by another name. Forced redistribution of wealth is oppression cloaked as benevolence.

[-] 5 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"People are not being treated equally when one group is favored over another"

That is why it is imperative that we replace capitalism with democracy. Capitalism is a system where a small group of wealthy people are favored over everyone else.

Democracy is a system where everyone is treated equally, where everyone has equal power.

.

"You cant increase wealth by dividing it"

You cannot increase total wealth. But you can increase the wealth of 97% of workers.

.

"Liberalism is Tyranny by another name"

Capitalism is tyranny of the minority, tyranny of the wealthy. Liberalism has nothing to do with tyranny. If you are a liberal and are for capitalism, then you are for tyranny. I am liberal. But I am for democracy, not capitalism.

Democracy is the absence of tyranny. It is a society where everyone has equal economic power because all power in society is economic. Whoever has the economic power has the political power.

.

"Forced redistribution of wealth is oppression cloaked as benevolence."

Capitalism is forced redistribution of wealth. You invade a country, murder its inhabitants, take the land so that you can get rich off of it, then put up a sign that says no stealing.

The planet and its resources belong to everyone. Mother nature doesn't have a store where you can buy part of the earth from her.

A democratic system, where every worker has an equal share of the planet's wealth, will put an end to the injustice of capitalism which allowed a small group of wealthy to conquer the planet for their own private gain.

[-] -2 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

democracy is not an economic system - it is a political system. So we can throw out everything else you just wasted your time writing here.

[-] 5 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

Democracy is based on equal access. Gross inequalities in the distribution of wealth creates unequal access to the halls of power. As George Soros once said "I don't need to vote. I can buy whatever legislation I need."

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Well said. The only power that exists is economic power. Whoever has the economic power has the political power.

[-] 0 points by beenthereonce (-13) 2 years ago

What do Osama and Obama have in common? They both have a friend that blew up the Pentagon!

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

And that friend's name was George Bush.

[-] 1 points by beenthereonce (-13) 2 years ago

And as Paul Harvey used to say, " and now we have the rest of the story". Paul Harvey, on the Muslim Religion - dogs are unclean and not allowed to travel in the same vehicle as the muslim. If this doesn't tick you off - nothing will - 'Bo', the Presidential Dog has never traveled in the same means of transportation WITH THE FIRST FAMILY.

Remember all the other Presidents with their dogs coming off the plane with them? Not the Obama's...!

Learn about Bo's vacation ----did you know the President flew the dog in on a separate smaller jet to Maine for their vacation? It is wondered if that sets well with all the unemployed hurting?

US citizens can't afford food, but we can pay for a dog to fly to Maine!!!!

The above is true, it was found and verified on the search engine Google - "Bo the dog flying to Maine". I got 76,700 references verifying it was true. Accordingly, they had to swallow their pride to use the Gulfstream, there wasn't enough room for the dog and his handler on Airforce 1.

Do you get it America, we are having a hard time getting out of these hard economic times while a dog and his handler get their own plane.

By the way, Mr Love, Bo's handler, is being paid $102,000 a year to take care of him.

[-] 0 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

Yeah that sure lets us all know that Obama is a Muslim, doesn't it?

As to Bo's handler, I am SURE your numbers are a distortion or outright lie. Nor do I care. The policies are what's important, not the president's dog. May of Obmama's policies are as abhorrent yo me as they likely are to you. But your stupid implications about Obama's religion or the budget for his dog just make you look like a fucking idiot.

[-] -1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

and your democracy will rid the world of the George Soros's of the world? How do you plan on implementing this brilliant idea which apparently no one has ever heard of until now?

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

The OP was not my idea, nor am I ether supporting or attacking it. I only spoke to the bizarre assertion that economic reality has no bearing on democracy.

[-] -3 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

good luck with your mob rule theory of democracy.

[-] 4 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

Bad luck with your plutocracy.

[-] -2 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

Who's for Plutocracy - I am for free market Capitalism where the federal gvt is limited to it's constitutional authority.

[-] 5 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

Reply to post below.

Bullshit.

The big fish eat the little fish because the is nothing preventing them from doing so. Crony capitalism is ALWAYS a result of capitalism itself.

What to understand the free market? Play a game of Monopoly. That is its perfect expression.

We may not have a perfectly free market (thank GOD) but we have move closer to it. Every time we deregulate something, it is closer to free market. And in every instance of deregulation, we have had more disaster. MArkets don't self regulate. They don't self police. They don't take care of their best interests. Free markets are ruled by stupidity, because greed is not intelligent. THe collapse of the economy, caused almost exclusively by and unregulated free market Wall Street is only the latest case. The era of the Robber Barons is another.

Libertarianism is the most disgusting, selfish, idiotic, ignorant, false-Utopian piece of shit political philosophy in America today. It is based on false premises, disproved assumptions, discredited economics, unsupported suppositions, hubris, fantasy, and pure selfishness. It IS the cool aid.

And when I look across the pond, what I see is a population that, by every single measure, lives a better, healthier, longer and more satisfying life than anyone here except the very wealthy. And, with the exception of Greece, every single one of the economical problems they are experiencing now are ones created by capitalism, not socialism, by banks, not health care plans. And in most instances they are simply the victims of EXACTLY the same meltdown that we are victims of. The recession, caused by Capitalism gone amok was a GLOBAL recession. OUR interconnected backs brought down theirs. And the ONLY thing that has blunted the suffering of Europe's population has been those very "socialist" systems in place there that you falsely blame for their crisis. Iceland, Norway, Sweden and Germany - all countries that have MORE socialist programs than many countries in trouble, (like Spain) - are doing FAR better than they are, indeed, far better than WE are.

OWS is not about Capitalism. It's whole existence is a protest against what capitalism has wrought. So go back to your Ron Paul sycophant sites, and stop pushing your bullshit here.

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

and why is cronyism inevitably a product of Capitalism? Do you really believe cronyism is exclusive to Capitalism? Really? If you want to talk Plutocracy or Oligarchy - one need not look further than the Supreme Court.

[Removed]

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

And you don't have a clue that it is post Reagan Libertardian bullshit that got this country into the mess that it's in now, so you want to make it more extreme.

Unregulated free market capitalism ALWAYS results, in the end, with plutocracy. The bog fish ALWAYS eat the little fish. People are ALWAYS left out in the cold. It is what we have now as a result of deregulating banks, and you want more of the same.

OWS is NOT a libertardian movement. It is a movement that seeks to redress the horrors wrought by metastasized end stage capitalism. So the next question is, how stupid are you that you come to its website in utter opposition to the movement? Do you just enjoy negative attention or is it pure grandiosity?

[-] -1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

and that's your complete misunderstanding of the free market. We haven't had a free market so how can you make those assertions? The only reason the big fish eat the little fish is because the govt helps them do it! All we've experienced is Crony Capitalism. We know where your socialist ideas lead - just look across the pond.

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

Reply to post below:

Cronyism can happen under a variety of systems. But it is inevitable in capitalism. As wealth and power accumulate at the top, those at the top have the power to tighten their grip on even more power and money. It is the very nature is the beast that unfettered capitalism is. The very structure of capitalism creates unequal distribution of wealth, and along with it, unequal distribution of power. It automatically leads to a loss of democracy via the unequal accumulation of wealth. The impoverished can't afford to make campaign contributions, and the wealthy can't afford not to. That's why capitalism has to be mitigated and tightly regulated. And that's why it IS mitigated and more tightly regulated to a much greater degree in the most of the rest of the developed world. And those regulations and mitigation are what leads to the people in those other nations to having a much higher quality of life, by every single measure, than we do here. We lag far behind in that respect.

As for the Supreme Court, those capitalists in charge were the ones who appointed them, and it is the right wing of that court in particular that protects those capitalist interests at the expense of the citizenry. They are the ones who suppress unions, and pass Citizens United, and strike down public election funding laws in Arizona, and eliminate affirmative action in colleges, and throw out class action discrimination suits against Wall-Mart. It is pure crony capitalism at that level, too.

[-] 1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

Cronyism is as inevitable as the sin of man in ANY system. As far as your opinion on the court - no surprizes there either.

[-] 0 points by SparkyJP (1646) from Westminster, MD 2 years ago

I would much rather be governed by the will of the majority of Americans, than to be ruled by the small elite.

[-] 1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

hahaha! be careful what you wish for. All this is is a childish temper tantrum. You should be targeting the ouster of politicians you disagree with and organize to vote them out.

[-] 1 points by SparkyJP (1646) from Westminster, MD 2 years ago

The trouble is that we don't have a democracy; and never did. What we have is a federal constitutional republic that has morphed into a Kleptocracy.

Kleptocracy, alternatively cleptocracy or kleptarchy, (from Greek: κλέπτης - kleptēs, "thief"[1] and κράτος - kratos, "power, rule",[2] hence "rule by thieves") is a form of political and government corruption where the government exists to increase the personal wealth and political power of its officials and the ruling class at the expense of the wider population, often without pretense of honest service. This type of government corruption is often achieved by the embezzlement of state funds.

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

embezzlement:

Web definitions:
the fraudulent appropriation of funds or property entrusted to your care but actually owned by someone else.

[-] 1 points by SparkyJP (1646) from Westminster, MD 2 years ago

IMO, 'embezzlement' is also appropriate and fitting. They are doing it right in front of our eyes; and they don't care who knows it. They have BIG balls while we stick our head in the sand. Someone needs to shake the shit out of us and wake us up.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

would have made a nice word of the day

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

And ? Your point is ? What's your solution?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Economy is short for political economy. The economy is political and capitalism is just as much a political system as democracy is. If you want to know what a democratic economy is, read the post. And read this comment:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-663128

[-] 1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

hahahaha! ok - good luck !!!

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Thank you. And good luck to you in promoting poverty and inequality.

[-] -1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

Growth = prosperity, redistribution = misery

[-] 3 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Redistribution does not hinder growth, it increases it. More inequality hinders growth because workers do not have enough income to buy everything they produce.

Redistribution would end the misery of the 150+ million Americans who live in or near poverty and would increase the standard of living of 97% of all workers.

You have been brainwashed to live in a bubble devoid of facts. There is a word for people who advocate and defend a system that makes them poor or pays them less: Stupid.

[-] -1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

hahaha ! so your a Keynsian & I'm a supply-sider. Unfortunately history is on my side.

[-] 4 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"All I know is I've never gotten a job from a poor person."

This is the exact kind of stupidity I was referring to. You are being conned by people who are using you as their useful idiot.

.

"Grow the pie & your slice gets bigger."

Wrong again. The pie over the past 12 years grew, but all that growth went to the top. The median income declined.

Since Reagan, the economy has grown significantly, like it did in years past, but most of that growth went to the top. The vast majority of the country got meager increases in income.

If income was allocated fairly, like how I describe in this post, your income would instantly increase 400%. That would take centuries to do with your trickle down theory.

.

"divide the pie & the whole pie gets smaller"

Wrong again. Norway, for example, has far less inequality than the US but yet they produce 33% more than the US per worker.

http://www.bls.gov/ilc/intl_gdp_capita_gdp_hour.htm#chart04

.

"It's just the way the world works. Adapt or perish."

A dog-eat-dog, sink-or-swim society where everyone fends for themselves is cruel and barbaric. The world must change just like it did for slavery, women's rights, equal protection under the law, democratic say, transparency, business regulation, worker safety, 40-hour week, 5-day week, ending child labor, guaranteed medical, guaranteed education and the millions of other gains common people made against those in power.

You realize you are fighting to keep yourself poor don't you?

[-] 1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

why did the median income decline? people aren't keeping up with the technology & the skills required for an ever changing market. I am not fighting at all - I am living quite a nice life because I've figured it out. I hope you do the same for yourself & your family instead of wasting your time occupying.

[-] 2 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 2 years ago

Yeah, history is wrought with poverty. It is on your side.

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

tell me - is there more poverty less poverty or the same amount of poverty since the feds have taken over every aspect of our lives since the 1930's?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"why did the median income decline? people aren't keeping up with the technology & the skills required for an ever changing market"

You don't know how the market works. It has nothing to do with technology and skills. It has to do with bargaining power. Your pay is based on demand relative to supply.

Doctors are probably the most skilled workers. If we tripled the amount of doctors, their income would plummet. The AMA knows this, that is why they limit the amount of doctors. Only a tiny percentage of the qualified people who apply to medical school get accepted.

Unless you make $135k, you are earning a below average income and getting a bad deal in the economy, and there is a 97% chance you make less than that amount. So I doubt the economy works well for you.

The economy should work well for everyone, not just 3%.

[-] -2 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

yea - you have less bargaining power when your skills dont keep up with the ability to automate your job or export it. There are a lot of people with lows skills & fewer with high skills. SO - get some high skills. The economy works the way it works. It's the social engineers how destroy the natural balance of things.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"tell me - is there more poverty less poverty or the same amount of poverty since the feds have taken over every aspect of our lives since the 1930's?"

There should be ZERO poverty. Everyone should be wealthy in society. The only reason why everyone is not wealthy and the reason why we have poverty and a middle class is because the Feds have been propping up and bailing out capitalism since its inception. They impose capitalism on the public which concentrates the income and wealth the workers' produce into the hands of a few.

If the Feds did not force capitalism on the public, capitalism would have been replaced before the Great Depression. Capitalism works for 3% of the population. That is it. It forces the bottom 97% to struggle.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

It really takes a special kind of gullibility and stupidity to think that rich people taking a greater share of the pie will increase the wealth of the people who are taking the smaller share of the pie.

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

All I know is I've never gotten a job from a poor person. Grow the pie & your slice gets bigger. divide the pie & the whole pie gets smaller . It's just the way the world works. Adapt or perish.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"There are a lot of people with lows skills & fewer with high skills. SO - get some high skills."

Since 97% make below the $135k average income, clearly the vast majority of skilled workers make below-average pay. People are not poor by choice. People are poor because they have no other choice. The only professions that have an average income higher than average are chief executives, doctors and dentists. Most high earners are celebrities and entrepreneurs.

People can't just choose to be a doctor, dentist, CEO, celebrity or successful entrepreneur.

So bargaining power is based on luck. It is based on genetics and market outcomes which is all luck and which is unfair. Your income should be based on hard work, not luck.

The only fair economic system is one that gives you a right to the same pay as everyone else who works as hard, not just a right to sit at a casino table.

.

"The economy works the way it works. It's the social engineers how destroy the natural balance of things."

What makes us human is the ability to improve things. Since most live in poverty merely because of the way income is allocated, income allocation must be changed. To say we should never progress and improve is incredibly dumb.

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

People who think they have no choice choose to feel that way. "I dont understand how the market works?" I know enough to have obtained skills enough to provide myself & my family with a comfortable life. It's all about skills not blaming the world at large. Thats a cop out

[-] 4 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Well, oppression is always cloaked as some form of benevolence (or else, who would have supported it and enabled its acquisition of power in the first place)? What we have to ask ourselves is whether something like FDR's New Deal actually resulted in oppression? If the answer is no, then how can we use that as an example of oppression? We don't need to hypothesize, the New Deal happened, and it was not oppressive (under any reasonable definition of the word).

However, I do wish people would stop calling social democracy, "anarchism" (because those two ideas really are mutually exclusive, assuming people have any respect for logic, and one cannot lead to the other, since more of one inherently means less of the other). I think a better case for right leaning libertarians would be to talk about how centralizing regulatory authority can endanger our rights. But of course right leaning libertarians, like left leaning so called anarchists, borrow the partisan language and thinking common to those who they identify as holding similar views (at least rhetorically). For example, do right leaning libertarians support tort reform? In most cases they do, but of course tort reform undermines our common law system (and it's really antithetical to true libertarian ideology). The unwillingness to unduly offend those who we think share many of our sentiments, is unfortunately leading to some very inconsistent rhetoric.

[-] 1 points by SparkyJP (1646) from Westminster, MD 2 years ago

Really good post.

[+] -4 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

of course FDR's policies are oppressive - just look at how seniors freaked out when Obama threatened to not send out the SS checks during the debt ceiling negotiations. If that's not Paternalism & slavery at it's worst I don't know what is. (other than actual slavery) That policy turned a whole country into a nation of dependents rather than a people free to learn how to care for themselves. It's an outrage. Even worse is the government raided the surplus, the program is insolvent & the return on what you paid in is the biggest investment loser you could ever make. Think about what you'd have if you put aside 15% of every penny you ever earned. it's in the millions at a conservative return. Of which you cannot leave to your children etc. biggest scam ever devised.

[-] 4 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

The idea that pension systems comprise a form of oppression is so ridiculous, trivializes the term "oppression" so much .... it can only be described as indicative of how many Americans have become detached from humanity and, quite frankly, reality. What's worse is it isn't even brainwashing, because in most cases, there was no brain to wash in the first place.

[-] -3 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

if you ran a "pension" the way the feds run theirs you'd be in jail like Madoff before you knew what hit you. Why do you have to be Forced into SS? That doesnt sound like a free country to me. Oh I forgot - your idea of freedom is to have all your needs provided for like a child.

[-] 4 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Ahhh, so providing social security to seniors is equivalent to being treated like a child? In fact social security is a well run program, it has not only guaranteed a retirement for our seniors for many decades, but it also provides disability to those who are too incapacitated to work, or children who lost their parents (and have no means of support).

But I guess in that narcissistic low functioning thing conservatives call a brain, this is somehow eviscerating our freedoms .... a very sad and angry bunch you are.

[-] 0 points by MtPockets2011 (9) from Shell, WY 2 years ago

Well run? Are you kidding? I'll bet that if you were able to run real-world numbers (without anyone manipulating them) you would find that MOST of us never get back anywhere near what we paid in. I saw a video clip on youtube of Alan Simpson talking about Social Security. It's quite interesting. In it, Senator Simpson states that part of the reason Social Security is in trouble is that is was designed at a time when the average lifespan was considerably less than 65 but that is why they set the retirement age at 65. People are living longer and therefore putting more of a strain on the system. They actually designed Social Security so that the average person would pay in to it for their entire lifetime, but die before receiving and benefits! Talk about a scam! Why don't they instead let us take 'X' amount of money from every paycheck and deposit it into an account that CANNOT be tapped until retirement or disability? It would mean that we ALL would get exactly what we paid and the government would NOT be able to raid it like they've done how many times to Social Security? If you choose not to work (or save) guess what- you're out of luck! Of course, we'd have to do something to help those who truly CANNOT work. I would also like to have all these companies that are taking our jobs overseas be responsible to those that are now unemployed because of it. I think they ought to pay those displaced workers their wages until they find a job with a similar salary.

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Really, a 0.9% increase in the payroll tax would fix social sec. now and forever. Moreover, just running some crude numbers, social security is not a bad deal. For instance, assuming an average wage of $40,000 per year, saving about 13% of income, over the course of an average career, earning a return of around 5% annual, the future value would be somewhere between $400 and 500K. The monthly annuity one can expect from that is about $1700 per month. This roughly corresponds with what we get from social security.

You can certainly say that a worker might get a slightly better return from a mutual fund, but maybe not, and maybe he or she loses everything. Moreover, it is true that social security also provides benefits to totally disabled workers and the dependent children of decedents. However, considering all our society gets from social security, I think the benefits are okay.

So for what it is ... yes, social security is a well run program. We could probably also do stuff like raise the retirement age, lower cost of living increases, etc., but in fact it would cost us very little to fix social security. The one complaint I have with social security is we lose our principle balance (or I should say, we never accrue a property interest in a principle balance in the first place).

[-] 1 points by MtPockets2011 (9) from Shell, WY 2 years ago

Wouldn't it be nice if, since we were responsible for saving for retirement- we were guaranteed that we'd get all of what we put in? I know way too many people who died within a year or two of retiring(or worse yet- never saw retirement) and the gov just gets to keep what's left. It seems really wrong, especially after seeing Senator Simpson talk about how that was actually part of the plan when the system was designed. Also, a side benefit is that those numbers that you show don't include what the employer contributes. I honestly don't know how much that is, but I believe it's more that the employee contribution.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Yes, the numbers I used did include employer contributions, but point taken, and you're right, we don't accumulate wealth to pass on to our heirs (and I agree ... we should do something about that).

[-] -1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

"Ahhh, so providing social security to seniors is equivalent to being treated like a child?" Answer - Yes.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Edit: not worth it ....

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

where do you get the idea MOST people think I'm stupid. The last I checked - the country is about evenly divided on these issues. Thanks for conceding the debate by calling names like a child. Good luck to you : ).

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

You're welcome ... but seriously, what country are you speaking of? Half the country wants to repeal social security? Well then gee, why didn't Perry do better? Was it his "oops" :)

[-] -2 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

half the people want to REFORM Social Security. The responsible 1/2. Tell me - where is democrats plan to reform SS? Why did Obama reject his own study committee's recomendations Simpson/Bowles? Why havent the dems passed a budget since Obama has taken office?

[-] 3 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

Old people in abject poverty aren't free, they are enslaved to the conditions of poverty. Old people who have starved to death aren't free, they're dead.

[-] -2 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

How about taking that 15% the govt confiscates from you your whole like & let you control it? That's freedom. Old people starving to death - your watching too much Grapes of Wrath propaganda. Thats what families are for & Charities. The only reason the govt has Soc Sec is to create dependency for your vote.

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

You are a complete, absolute, indoctrinated idiot. You have no clue about the real world, only your fantasy version of it. Not everyone has families. Charity has never worked in the past, it doesn't work now, it will never do what the nation's job is to do.

Go back to your Disneyland Ron Paul fantasy websites, and stop pestering intelligent people with your inanities.

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

Charity has never worked ? How do you know? Talk about indoctrinated lol! I Know I've won when you start calling names just like a child. Good luck to you..

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 2 years ago

"Charity has never worked ? How do you know? " All of history, moron. Social Security has been documented to have save millions upon millions of people from abject poverty and starvation that was persistent - despite charity - before it's inception. Read a book or two beyond the Ayn Rand bullshit once in a while and you would know that.

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

really? what version of history are you being fed? tell me what was the rate of poverty in 1950 & what is the rate of poverty today?

[-] -1 points by po6059 (72) 2 years ago

You are right. but the libs/dems are congenitally stupid and as you know , you can't fix stupid.

[-] -1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

Vote Libertarian ! : )

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Libertarianism: Invade a country, murder its inhabitants, take control of its land, and then set up a society where everyone fends for themselves so that the strong can dominate the weak until society is eventually ruled entirely by a small group of rich people (who are preferably white and male).

If anyone disagrees or protests against their society being ruled by a small group of wealthy, use deadly violence to suppress the insurrection and call that suppression "protection of property rights" and "protection of freedom".

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

really? how is that Libertarianism?

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Libertarianism is based on property rights and unmitigated markets.

Property rights means you are using violent force to protect private, exclusive ownership of the planet. You can't privatize the Earth's lands, something that is not for sale and does not belong to you, without the use of violent force because other people will want to use that land too.

And unmitigated markets always lead to a concentration of wealth and income since the more wealth you have, the easier it is to get more wealth. Markets favor the wealthy. So the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.

[-] 0 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

the rich get richer & opportunity is created for everyone else. Property rights protects property. When property is collectively owned it is abused with the thought - someone else is taking care of it. I'd better get my share before everyone else takes it. Look at the Former Soviet Union as a perfect example. wasteland of public property.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"so go steal some property. "everyone should" of course the world should be a lot of things it is not. Stay stuck on that notion & you will be finished."

You want an economy that is based on theft, that only works well for 3% and that people should never want to change.

I want the exact opposite of that.

Your worldview is moronic, backwards and cruel.

[Removed]

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Property rights protect the property for the people who stole it. That is unjust. The planet and its resources belong to everyone, not just the conquerors. And everyone should have a right to work it and get the full value of that work.

Since 18% cannot get a full time job and the top 3% take most of the income the bottom 97% generate, the system is not fair or just.

Property is taken care of based on the resources you commit to maintenance. It is not based on private ownership. There are plenty of privately owned dumps and plenty of publicly owned palaces.

Do you just believe every dumb libertarian slogan you are told?

[-] -1 points by Dell (-168) 2 years ago

so go steal some property. "everyone should" of course the world should be a lot of things it is not. Stay stuck on that notion & you will be finished. What job do you want? what skills do you have? What have you done to make yourself marketable?

[-] 2 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

......are you insane

no one would go for this except the lazy and the dumb

i'm sorry i'm working hard to get a good life, so can they.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

97% of workers make a below average income. That is not because they don't work hard. It is because this system is not based on hard work. It is based on bargaining power. My landscaper works harder than Rush Limbaugh. But Limbaugh makes 10,000 times more. It isn't because he works 10,000 times harder.

You are naive if you think everyone who works hard does well. And you are completely misinformed if you think all the people who struggle, struggle because they are lazy.

[-] 1 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

well some people have better skill sets. You went with a gardener well they work harder but their work is all physical. Now i'm going to go somewhere you haven't thought of what about a Biomedical Engineer they dont always work harder physically but they do mentally and considering that is one of the toughest fields in engineering i say they work hard for everything. society pay isn't paid based on physical labor anymore its based mental capabilities. That is why everyone stress get a good education before entering the real world.

97% of workers make below average income well then what would be average i checked your numbers you lied. stop spreading lies

if 97% of people work under average wage the average wage would be to heavily influenced by outliers and those would be removed.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Household_income_in_the_United_States

i know you hate capitalism but is that enough to spread lies and hurt peoples view points

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You are wrong again. The economy does not pay based on mental capabilities either. Like I said, it is based on bargaining power. Howard Stern does not do more mentally difficult work than a biomedical engineer. But yet he gets paid hundreds of times what they do.

The only fair system is to limit differences in income to only what is necessary to get people to do mentally or physically difficult work and to get people to give their maximum effort.

I don't lie. There are links to credible sources for all my data and claims. I only use government data. You can check the numbers yourself.

[-] 1 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

its based on both mental and bargaining power (if you go and get a higher degree you get more money)

see source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Household_income_in_the_United_States

i used government data too.... so show me your sources

also you stated "It is odd for people who are not economists and do not know much about economics to insist that they are right about what the GDP is." are you an economist and if so from where.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Again, it is based on bargaining power, not mental power. Income is allocated through the market, it is not based on mental difficulty.

If everyone got a higher degree, they would not get more money. If we had twice as many doctors with the same demand, doctor income would be cut in half.

Did you read the post? All the sources are in my post.

My degree is in business but it required graduate level economics courses. I worked for the Fed. I worked as an investment banker. And I study economics and political science as a hobby.

[-] 1 points by Deeptx (42) 2 years ago

Homeboy you need new sources because 97% is way off I don't care how many degrees u have

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

My sources are the US government. I would ask you to show me the source that you have that disputes the Bureau of Economic Analysis, but there is no such source. Companies are required to report to the BEA by law. So there is no other source that is more accurate than the BEA numbers I cite in this post.

[-] 1 points by Deeptx (42) 2 years ago

Then post ur source I don't see it

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

The calculation that shows 97% make a below average income:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-673979

See the calculation in paying everyone from $115k to $460k:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662000

How we can reduce the work week to 20 hours:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662013

[-] -1 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

i am getting a degree in engineering im going to be paid for my skills in my field and my bargaining power of my contract

so why post here why not post in a journal or for your peers not for idiots or is it because your idea is for radicals so you want radicals to like it.

Honestly i don't believe you on your job or anything because why would you want something so dumb for the united states.

[-] 0 points by EndGluttony (507) 2 years ago

What do you hope to contribute to society? What kind of company do you hope to work for? Doing what?

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I don't believe a society that works well for everyone where there is no suffering caused by financial hardship is dumb. Cruel people such as yourself think suffering is a good idea. I do not.

You think the best way to reach people is to publish the idea in an economics journal? lol

My idea is for anyone who wants a higher standard of living

[-] -1 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

No i dont think it cruel to let people wither away i dont think people deserve money unless they work for it and work hard for it. My work is worth more than many types of job that means im compensated more.

you idea is flawed and that is why you refuse to show it to any of your peers

then again you "work" for the fed the biggest rip off in human kind

you confusing ethical and moral choices

[-] 1 points by EndGluttony (507) 2 years ago

Why is your work worth more? Worth more than what? You have an inflated sense of self-worth. How do you define "hard work?" Do you sit at a desk all day moving a mouse around? Do you create anything worthwhile?

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"i dont think it cruel to let people wither away"

You can stand with the tea party and yell at people in wheelchairs who need help in paying for their medical care. I will stand for the exact opposite of that.

If you take the time to read my proposal, you would see that you only get paid if you work and the people who work hard will get paid as much as 4 times more than everyone else.

Unless you get lucky as an entrepreneur and make millions of dollars, my proposal will give you a better deal than you will get in today's system.

[-] 1 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

no ill stick to our system that we have now. I know ill be CEO of a company someday

i did read it all and i didn't like most of it. It is also the reason i don't think you a business man or work for the fed. I was think about what you said about bargaining. Bargaining is a tool and a skill that can be learned it like connections those with many prosper. Well if i'm a better peoples person then i will get a job because of that but i will also get it because of my primary skill set. But i do use my bargaining to get my job so they do go hand in hand.

Also why i don't think your a Business man is the fact you don't know manufacturing cost we don't just pay for wages a lot goes into it. If you studied this which i know is in your curriculum you we agree that wages are not just the only cost.

[-] 0 points by EndGluttony (507) 2 years ago

Wow, you know you'll be a CEO someday!? Lofty goals. What a joke. I predict the whole thing collapses before you get the chance to rape and pillage, which is what you really want to do. Mommy and Daddy always told you you were SO SPECIAL and you believed them. I bet you are interminably boring.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Keep dreaming. There is a near-100% chance you will not become the CEO of some company. Horatio Alger is a myth.

The only thing you pay for in an economy is income. 100% of GDP is income. Every penny that gets spent winds up in someone's pocket as income.

[-] 0 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

No i will i know that i will. I also know that as an engineer i'm am more likely to become on than someone else. (its they way we think). I will get there any way i can Horatio Alger is not a myth i know many people who made themselves so i know i can too.

no it doesn't i know im in manufacturing i know how wages in work I know how GDP works you honestly don't understand how things work. Lets look at cars now why would a car be more expensive than each other if its only reason it is priced so high or low is wages. Car companies pay a flat wage but yet cars are different prices.

You sir are a fraud and you do not work for the fed nor do you have a business degree and i call you out in front of our peers because i do not believe one bit into your lies. The more you post the bigger the holes in your lies become. So i say to you Cease and Desist on your slander and bigotry of our economy.

[-] 2 points by EndGluttony (507) 2 years ago

You are an egotistical self-congratulatory fool and everyone you meet secretly thinks you are a moronic asshole.

[-] -1 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

No i dont think so i think i have a good chance to be my own person. You were so close with the asshole part see im only an asshole to those i dont like and those who betray my trust. I friendly to everyone until they do something that i deem them unfriendly.

So Gluttony stop worrying about me because there is nothing you could do to stop the wheel from turning. So i suggest you go somewhere else troll

[-] 1 points by EndGluttony (507) 2 years ago

You make me laugh, Danny. You have to realize two things: you're dumb and an asshole. But you're young. You might figure shit out. But you will not be the success you think you're going to be. Because you're a dumb asshole.

[-] 1 points by EndGluttony (507) 2 years ago

You will not succeed, you will always be a boring, self-absorbed fool. It's obvious.

[-] 0 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

insults from a sad person. People like you make the rest of us sick. I can dream anything i want i can go after goals and yes with determination i can have my own company o wait i do. So i guess in a way i am a CEO of a company it just a really small one at the moment. So go along and live out the rest of your life in failure and accept that people like me will succeed because we have drive.

[-] 1 points by EndGluttony (507) 2 years ago

What did your Daddy do to "earn" the money that set you up for your sweet life?

[-] 1 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

Ill reply only to one of your things since you bombarded me with "questions".

Well my father has set me up a good life one that is getting better every day. Thank you for your concern.

My work is worth more because I’m a full time student at the age of 21 in one of the best schools for engineering. I have done more than most people have done in their lives and I am only starting mine. I have started my own business while still in school. I have personally designed with my mouse more efficient manufacturing machines, on Autodesk, Catia, and Ironcad. I have also built two cars a Baja racer and two go karts. All while managing money and people. I've worked since the age of 13, yes you can work that young. I knew my value of the dollar from my first job even before then. I had so many jobs most of them manual labor jobs, where I been yelled at, punched beer thrown at me and abused by a horrible boss. I know our system I know how to work hard and manage a team. So work would be considered any amount of effort put into a system to get a something out of it. You don’t need to see my resume since I know you don’t have the details

What will I contribute to society is a better and more efficient manufacturing process. Or something else I’m still in school I have two years to decide.

Our system will not be over run or overturned so I will be CEO of a company I will work hard to make sure everything runs smoothly. Your thought process of a CEO is blinded by media and movies they do so much work that goes unaccredited. You also said I will pillage and rape all before me well no. That was and idiotic thing to say I would like to think that the future me will pay fair wages and be a successful person ethically and business ways. I also know I will become a major influence to our world because I know people. Because when someone has an idea I talk to them and learn about them instead of yelling at them. Connections I also have those to by again talking and getting to know as many people and establishing a good rapport with them.

Before you yell at some though the internet try to understand there thought process

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

taught school and bought property of course housing were 1/10 the cost then

My mom didn't work and raised four kids

all on a teacher's salary

times were different only one adult in the family had to work

but the economy work fine in that state

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

lol. Did you just come back from an AmWay meeting?

"Cease and District"

more lols

[-] 1 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

lesser men turn to insults as their defenses instead of facing the facts that are in their face

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

total money flow?

GDP can be determined in three ways, all of which should, in principle, give the same result. They are the product (or output) approach, the income approach, and the expenditure approach.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gross_domestic_product

[-] 1 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

thank you......?

also i know what GDP is thank you for your concern

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

Money can be passed without producing any goods and services

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

noted

[-] 0 points by Deeptx (42) 2 years ago

Good job almost every stat I have seen on these threads are 100% incorrect. Boy 97% sure did sound scary though

[-] 1 points by DanielBarton (1345) 2 years ago

yes dont listen to this guy he claims he works for the fed (high doubt it) i looked through all his data and i can tell you he fixed it. I now it was wiki but that's all i could find that had real sources of where they even got there data

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I don't know what is in that very long wikipedia article. But some random article on wikipedia, which has a disclaimer at the top saying it is outdated, is not more authoritative than the actual economic numbers published by the BEA, which is the government agency responsible for publishing all our economic data.

If that wikipedia article gives numbers that are different than the ones published by the BEA that I cite here, then that wikipedia article is inaccurate.

You are a moron if you think wikipedia is more accurate than the BEA.

[-] 1 points by Deeptx (42) 2 years ago

Post link to the bea numbers please because I can find nothing that states 97%. I don't know what wiki article you r talking about I posted no such thing. I never look at wiki for any info, but unless you show a link to that specific 97% I stand that this info is completely incorrect. Every time I ask u to post it u ramble on.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You have to actually read the post. It is odd that you are criticizing my sources when you don't even know what those sources are.

The calculation that shows 97% make a below average income:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-673979

See the calculation in paying everyone from $115k to $460k:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662000

How we can reduce the work week to 20 hours:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662013

[-] 2 points by Deeptx (42) 2 years ago

The info is good but your calculation is incorrect. You r taking the income and spreading it equally. You have to weight the income correctly to the corresponding household. If you knew what you were doing you would know that there is actually an inflation adjusted household income index that the us census updates every quarter. The average income for the American household is just north of 51,000. Read this. http://www.usatoday.com/money/economy/story/2012-02-09/income-rising/53033322/1

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"your calculation is incorrect. You r taking the income and spreading it equally"

That is how you calculate an average, there is no other way. This is grade school math. lol

My data is for average worker, not average household. The article you linked talks about household data, not worker data. And it talks about median income, not average income.

The average income for full time workers is $135k. The median income for wage earners is $26k, the median for all workers is $35k and the median for full time workers is $45k.

Also, that data is based on the census which collects data via surveys. The numbers I cite are from the BEA which has more accurate aggregate numbers because all medium and large businesses are required by law to report their numbers.

[-] 1 points by Deeptx (42) 2 years ago

Yes but you r spreading it evenly among a completely uneven population ..... that is statistics 101, we r not dealing with grade school math."lol". The accurate American household income is around 51,000. This comes from the most accurate repoting agency the US Cencus. You are cookin the books so to speak. The poverty line is what you should be focused on not an average of every wage paid

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Dude, I am not going to debate you on how to calculate an average or what the difference is between median and average or what the difference is between worker and household. These are grade school concepts.

If you understood basic math, you would probably be less inclined to advocate for a system that pays you less and works you more.

[-] 1 points by Deeptx (42) 2 years ago

They are not grade school concepts it's the truth you are using the incorrect calculation, bring out the old textbooks and check. Worker and household= the same thing. If there are two workers in the household then it will be reflected for that household, if there is one worker then the household number will reflect that, gives you the same number as all workers income. There is no math in my equation, i work 50 hrs a week for 100k now and I do it because I want to make a few million a year 10 yrs from now. Your system want let that happen. Why do i need basic math for that

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

WHAT IS DEMOCRACY?

  • Democracy is Greek for "people power;" it is not Greek for "voting" or "majority rule"
  • It means the power to act rests with everyone equally
  • All power in society comes from income
  • So your income determines your political power and your power to live the life you want
  • However, income is also the incentive we use to get people to do hard work and give their maximum effort
  • So a democratic society is a society that allocates income in a way where differences in income are limited by law to just what is necessary to get people to do hard work and give their maximum effort

THE DEMOCRATIC RULE

  • A democratic society can be governed by one simple rule to make sure the power to act rests with everyone equally: The power to act is equal, so you have the power to act so long as it doesn't reasonably reduce another person's power to act
  • You have the power to live
  • It is not reasonable to allow you the power to murder because it would reduce the murdered person's power to live; but it may be reasonable to allow you the power to murder if that person broke into your house with a gun
  • You have the power to play music; but it is not reasonable to allow you the power to play music in the middle of the night because it would reduce your neighbor's power to sleep
  • Since most of the things you want to do require money, your power to do most things depends on the amount of income you have
  • In order to have a society where everyone has equal power, according to the democratic rule above, everyone must be paid an equal income within reason
  • It is not reasonable to pay Kim Kardashian $40 million more than everyone else because that would reduce everyone else's income by $40 million, which would give her hundreds of times more power than everyone else and there is no job that exists that requires us to pay $40 million more in order to fill
  • But it may be reasonable to pay a cashier less in order to pay a doctor 4 times more income because doctors do much more difficult work and the extra income is necessary to attract enough doctors

DEMOCRACY MEANS FREEDOM

  • Power is just another word for freedom
  • Freedom is the power to act without coercion or restraint
  • Freedom, in the context of a society, is the power to act, think and speak without political coercion or restraint and without economic coercion or restraint
  • Since democracy means equal power, democracy can also be restated as meaning equal freedom
  • So another way to restate the democratic rule above is by saying: Everyone has an equal degree of freedom, so you have the freedom to act so long as it doesn't reasonably violate another person's freedom to act
  • The modern interpretation of democracy is a society based on freedom and equality
  • However, the wealthy few at the top, who are only interested in a society where they have all the power and freedom, deliberately define freedom incorrectly as just the mere opportunity to act
  • Under this absurd definition, prisoners would meet the definition of being free since they do actually have a chance of escaping the prison
  • They use this doublespeak and their absurd definition of freedom in order to avoid having to explain how a society can be free when the vast majority are subjected to all kinds of unnecessary economic restraints on their power to live how they want
  • A poor girl in a so-called free Western country who cannot afford tuition has the same lack of freedom to get an education as a girl growing up in a Taliban-ruled Afghan village where education for girls is banned
  • A capitalist society where income is concentrated in the hands of the few is not a free society and is not a democratic society

DEMOCRATIC SOCIETY

  • Individuals need societies
  • Societies give individuals the ability to achieve far more than they could on their own
  • And democracy is a system where everyone has an equal power to act
  • So a democratic society is a society whose purpose is to continually maximize everyone's power to act
  • The goal of a democratic society is to provide the institutions and infrastructure that continually maximize every individual's ability to live whatever kind of lifestyle they want to live so long as it doesn't reasonably interfere with another individual's ability to live the lifestyle they want
  • The priority then of a democratic society would be to use the methods of science to maximize health, maximize wealth and minimize labor by automating every job that people have no interest in doing so that we can maximize everyone's time and resources to freely live the life they want

DEMOCRACY DEFINED

  • Therefore, a democratic society is a society that uses the methods of science to continually maximize each individual's power to live whatever lifestyle they want and that power rests with everyone equally
[-] 4 points by JIFFYSQUID92 (-994) from Portland, OR 2 years ago

Luv it! Where'd you get it?

This is what THEY hate. WE take it for-grated, but they take it as anathema.

There are people who just won't/can't learn.

Walking Dead!

[-] -1 points by Perspect1ve (-107) 2 years ago

YOU hate anyone who doesn't think like you. Who's the intolerant one now? Asshole Look in the frigging mirror.

[Removed]

[-] 0 points by SparkyJP (1646) from Westminster, MD 2 years ago

I am all for Democracy. In fact, I am an advocate for a Direct Democracy -

http://osixs.org/Rev2_menu_commonsense.aspx

Although many people might say we have a democracy, the United States of America is actually a federal constitutional republic. BIG difference.

http://www.stutzfamily.com/mrstutz/WorldAffairs/typesofgovt.html

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

The Founders were comprised of rich, white, slave owners. They were scared of democracy and equality. Madison, in particular, wanted an oligarchy and was scared that democracy might put an end to the privileged lifestyle him and the rest of the opulent enjoyed.

Madison wanted a society where only rich, white property owners could vote.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWvIWxh2yRs&feature=player_detailpage#t=511s

Democracy is a Greek word. But it is not a Greek word for "voting" or "mob rule" or "majority wins". It is Greek for "people power". It means power rests with everyone equally.

All power comes from economic power. Whoever has the economic power has the political power and has the power to live any way they want. So in order to have democracy, economic power must rest with everyone equally.

Being able to directly vote on some issue does not make the society democratic.

[-] 0 points by salta (-1104) 1 year ago

john adams,samuel adams , hamilton and tom paine did not own slaves.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 1 year ago

12 of our first 18 presidents owned slaves. Most of our founding fathers owned slaves.

The most significant founding father, George Washington, owned hundreds that slaved on his plantation. He was so despicable, he had a dentist extract teeth from his slaves so that they can be implanted in his mouth.

The second most significant founding father, Thomas Jefferson, also owned hundreds that slaved on his plantation. He was probably the most hypocritical of the founders. Despite all his rhetoric of freedom and equality for everyone, he never freed any of his slaves even after his death.

Celebrating these people is no different than Libya celebrating Gaddafi or Iraq celebrating Hussein.

[-] -1 points by salta (-1104) 1 year ago

the founding fathers gave the world the greatest nation ever conceived. gadaffi,....................a tyrant ,same with hussein.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 1 year ago

Yeah, there was nothing tyrannical about them enslaving blacks, slaughtering the Native Americans to expand their empire west, and preventing blacks, women and men who were not rich enough from voting.

[-] 0 points by salta (-1104) 1 year ago

the founding fathers gave the world the greatest nation ever conceived.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 1 year ago

So I am now convinced that you are just trying to demonstrate Poe's Law. Well played.

[Removed]

[-] -3 points by DKAtoday (27542) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Electoral voting should be disappeared. This electoral process is the main fuck-up of democratic voting. Get to presenting the majority cleanly. No hocus-pocus.

[+] -4 points by DKAtoday (27542) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

The whole electoral college for deciding a presidential race is so bogus. You can play with these votes in too many ways that do not represent public will. Districting and redistricting for example. Fine divide up the populations in states to determine the proper number of representatives it should have but do not Tye it into being representative votes. That is just wrong.

[-] 1 points by SparkyJP (1646) from Westminster, MD 2 years ago

They make it that complicated for a reason; when it should be just simple arithmetic. A DD would do away with the electoral college and rely strictly on popular vote (+ give us realtime oversight powers that currently is really needed). I was surprised that the American people allowed the supreme court to 'elect' our president in 2000. Why wouldn't they fall back to the popular vote when in doubt? It is time for a structural change in government. Our federal constitutional republic has morphed into a Kleptocracy. - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kleptocracy

[+] -5 points by DKAtoday (27542) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

All we really need to do is: Own the system as The People Of The United States of America. It is ours to own.

Take part in the process and make the needed changes.

We are moving forward. It will not be a short fight.

We will only win by acting - Together.

[-] -2 points by Perspect1ve (-107) 2 years ago

And you too are a frigging moron dumbass. Democracy is Mob rule and discriminates against the individual. Instead of having basic rights you are subject to whatever the MOB decides/ Example: There is a vote taken to deport all Christians. It passes. All Christians are deported. Of course most of the Left would be okay with that as they hate Christians or anyone with MORALS. Good Lord you are stupid.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

If you got educated, not only would you be able to have a normal conversation without the childish insults, but you would also learn what democracy actually is.

As explained in this comment (did you even read the comment!?), democracy is a Greek word. But it is not a Greek word for "voting" or "mob rule" or "majority wins". It is Greek for "people power". It means power rests with everyone equally.

Equal power means you have the power to act, SO LONG AS IT DOES NOT REASONABLY REDUCE ANOTHER PERSON'S POWER TO ACT.

In a democratic society, you cannot vote to deport Christians because that would reasonably violate the Christian's power to not be deported.

These are very simple concepts to understand if you take the time to actually read what is written.

[-] -2 points by Perspect1ve (-107) 1 year ago

How arrogant you are. You need to brush up on your education. You probably think the USA is a democracy too. You're just a pathetic person who wants to take other peoples hard earned money to give to someone YOU feel needs it more. To you successful people are evil. You can live whatever life you choose in this country if you have enough brains and work hard. You just want to HAND it to people. What a dumb fuck.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 1 year ago

"You probably think the USA is a democracy too."

The entire thesis of this article is that the US is not a democracy, it is capitalist. Democracy is a system where people have equal political power and equal freedom. Capitalism is a system which maximizes income inequality and since your income determines your.political power and freedom, capitalism is a system that maximizes the inequality of political power and freedom. Capitalism is the opposite of democracy.

I'm not sure how you missed that.

.

"You're just a pathetic person who wants to take other peoples hard earned money to give to someone YOU feel needs it more."

In this article I also make it very clear that since the purpose of income is to compensate people for work, the only fair way to allocate income is based on how hard you work. So I do not think people should get paid based on who I feel needs it more.

Capitalism does NOT allocate income based on how hard you work. Capitalism is the system where a small group of people at the top take everyone else's hard earned money.

As explained in this post, capitalism is based on privatization which is claiming exclusive control over a portion of the planet for your own private benefit and using whatever force is necessary to maintain your control. Privatization is theft.

And capitalism allocates wealth based on bargaining power which allows the top 3% with all the bargaining power to unfairly exploit the bottom 97% who does not have bargaining power by taking ost of the income they work for. Even though the bottom 97% do nearly all the work, the top 3% unfairly take nearly all the income. That is exploitation.

If you are against theft and exploitation, if you are against a system where "[people want] to take other peoples hard earned money" then you should be against capitalism and for the democracy I advocate in this post.

.

"To you successful people are evil."

Successful people are not evil. The system is evil. The system is based on theft, force and exploitation. Everyone is forced to live within the system whether they like it or not.

Even if successful people advocate keeping things exactly the way they are, that would not make them evil. Everyone has been brainwashed in America since birth to think that capitalism is fair, is just, gives you freedom, etc. It takes a lot to overcome a lifetime of brainwashing.

.

"You can live whatever life you choose in this country if you have enough brains and work hard."

That is not true. But if it was, how is that fair to the people who were not born with enough brains? The vast majority of people cannot become doctors or engineers. And the vast majority of people who start a business will not become financially successful.

A system where your success depends on what you are born with is no better than a feudal system where your success depends on what family you were born into.

But the fact is your claim is just not true. We allocate wealth in this country based on bargaining power and luck, not hard work. Trump got rich because his father gave him $50 million, not because he worked harder. Zuckerberg didn't work harder than the other people building social networking websites. He got lucky that the market chose his.

The market is unpredictable. Of all the people who work incredibly hard as entrepreneurs, only a small few will become successful. The difference is pure luck.

Most people cannot afford school and without school your chances of success are significantly less than they already are.

50% of all Americans are living in or near poverty, and 97% of all workers are earning a below average income, and the govt released data on wage earners for the first time ever which shockingly shows 50% are making less than $26k, and 18% of all available workers cannot even find a full-time job.

It is clear that the economy does not work at all for the overwhelming majority of workers. And it is NOT because they don't work hard or don't have enough brains!

Like George Monbiot says, "If wealth was the inevitable result of hard work and enterprise, every woman in Africa would be a millionaire. The claims that the ultra-rich 1% make for themselves – that they are possessed of unique intelligence or creativity or drive – are examples of the self-attribution fallacy."

.

" You just want to HAND it to people. What a dumb fuck."

Only in unfair medieval systems like capitalism and monarchies do people just get handed enormous wealth for free - without working for it - and to the exclusion and detriment of everyone else.

If you are against people being handed wealth for free and want a system when you are paid based on how hard you work, you should be against capitalism and for the system described in this post. I want the same thing.

[-] -2 points by Perspect1ve (-107) 1 year ago

Yep you're a dumbfuck. I stand by every statement I made and you are just a little asshole who wants to "spread the wealth around",even to people who don't work for it.If someone inherits wealth what business it of yours? Jealousy rears it's ugly head I'd say.I've made a good living in this country by working hard. I only have a high school education but due to busting my ass and learning everything I could I do pretty well. You seem to think I was handed this,well fuck you cause I worked for everything I have. Unlike the lazy fucks who want to feed off the govts teat I chose to make my own way.There is nothing unfair about it. I came from a family on welfare and chose to bust my ass so my family wouldn't have to be sucking off the govt teat. Basically you can kiss my ass because in this country you can make as much money as you want if you have any common sense and a drive to succeed. You see you're talking to the wrong person because I've been poor and I know you can work hard to get out of that situation.You see anyone with any intelligence acquires skills which will allow them to rise above where they are currently. You seem to feel things should be handed to people. You seem to think that someone who mops the floors should be paid as much as someone who has devoted time and effort to educate themselves to better their situation. This is where we differ . I KNOW that hard work and learning skills will better your income. You think that just because someone works hard cleaning toilets thay should be paid the same as let's say,a doctor.Pull your head out of your ass and get real.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 1 year ago

"you are just a little asshole who wants to "spread the wealth around",even to people who don't work for it"

You don't know how to read.

This post says I want to allocate income based on how hard you work and have 100% of the income paid to workers.

It does not say I want to redistribute income to people who don't work.

.

"If someone inherits wealth what business it of yours? "

And here you make it clear that YOU are in fact the person who wants to distribute wealth to people who don't work for it!

So do you consider yourself "a little asshole" since you think people who want to give wealth to people who don't work for it little assholes?

Unlike you, I believe the only fair system is to pay people based on how hard they work, not what family they are born into. Unlike you, I am against monarchies.

.

"Jealousy rears it's ugly head I'd say"

I am interested in fairness and the only fair economic system is a system that allocates wealth based on how hard you work. Our current system is based on theft and exploitation and allocates income based on unfair bargaining power as explained in simple, easy-to-understand terms here.

.

"I've made a good living in this country by working hard."

And if we had a fair system, as explained in this post, you would have likely made significantly more income. Unfortunately, a good portion of your income was stolen from you. I am trying to put an end to that theft.

.

"You seem to think I was handed this,well fuck you cause I worked for everything I have."

Our current system is robbing you blind. You were only paid a fraction of what you should have for working as hard as you did. You are fighting for the wrong team!

.

"Unlike the lazy fucks who want to feed off the govts teat I chose to make my own way"

I am with you brother and am fighting to put an end to feeding off the govt teat so that all that income is paid to hard workers like yourself.

The few people at the top earn trillions off the government teat without working at all for that money. They use the force of government to enforce laws that enable them to collect unearned income - which is income they have not worked for - such as rent, interest, profit and exploitation.

If the force of government did not allow them to collect this unearned money, 100% of our economy's income would be paid to the people who actually do the work of producing everything.

There is no greater unfair government welfare program than the one which pays a few people at the top all the unearned income from rent, interest, profit and exploitation.

.

"in this country you can make as much money as you want if you have any common sense and a drive to succeed"

Horatio Alger is a myth. The vast, overwhelming majority of people who have common sense and the drive to succeed do not make much money at all.

Very few professions guarantee a high income and very few people are born with the intellectual capacity to do those jobs. Being a doctor, for example, takes more than common sense and drive.

And the market is based on luck. The market is unpredictable. So out of all the incredibly hard-working people who try to, for example, launch a business, only a tiny fraction will do very well. The difference between winners and losers is luck, not common sense and drive.

.

"You see you're talking to the wrong person because I've been poor and I know you can work hard to get out of that situation."

The fact that you were poor is a crime. Nobody should be poor. You should have a right to a job that pays fairly. And if we allocate income fairly, the minimum income would be $115k, which is enough to make every worker wealthy.

Poverty serves no purpose whatsoever.

.

"You seem to think that someone who mops the floors should be paid as much as someone who has devoted time and effort to educate themselves to better their situation."

Nobody should have to waste their life mopping floors. Machines should do all those menial jobs that are beneath the dignity of human effort.

.

"You think that just because someone works hard cleaning toilets thay should be paid the same as let's say,a doctor"

You need to read the post so you know what I actually advocate. You are just making things up. I never said doctors should get paid the same as toilet cleaners.

I said people should get paid based on how hard you work. Differences in income should be limited to whatever is necessary to get people to do undesirable work and give their maximum effort. That is what the point of income is for. It is an incentive system. So it should only be used as an incentive system.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 1 year ago

Don't waste your time on this right wing wacko he will never be turned and is nasty, mean spirited, and vulgar.

I mean I'm not tellin you what to do, but me recent limited experience with him was very disturbing.

Peace

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 1 year ago

I agree with what you are saying.

But he is at least trying to make some arguments which is more than what a lot of the right wing trolls do here!

I know I am not going to change his mind but perhaps he will at least understand what people who are opposed to capitalism actually advocate and that it is nothing like what he thinks.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 1 year ago

Very good. Hopefully he won't curse you out and personally attack you.

Good luck. I'm with you.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 1 year ago

Oh, I fully expect to be cursed at and personally attacked! lol

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 1 year ago

Cool. he is on a mission against me if you've noticed.

Peace

[-] 0 points by Perspect1ve (-107) 1 year ago

So by your standard a janitor that works hard should be paid as much as a doctor that works hard. Am I getting your perspective right? OH yeah machines should do all the undesirable jobs. Listen to your arrogance. You're just as I posted and you haven't said anything to make yourself look any different. People can work hard at any job but it doesn't mean the should make as mucjh as everybody else,Your thinking seem very Communistic and we've all seen how well that works. I refer you to Tiamenin Square in China. Isn't it funny how all the leaders in Communist nations are wealthy and privileged but the people suffer? Yeah that's just a great system to emulate isn't it.But then it's all so easy for you to tell other people how to live isn't it.Yeah you say it's all luck. That's definjitely the argument of a loser.$115k for a janitor,you're out of your mind. I'm guessing you haven't gotten far in life or you are a perpetual college student who thinks they know what is best for everyone. That's fucking stupid and arrogant.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 1 year ago

"So by your standard a janitor that works hard should be paid as much as a doctor that works hard. Am I getting your perspective right?"

No, you are not getting it right. Being a janitor is not hard work. Being a doctor is. Being a doctor is perhaps the hardest job, so it will likely get paid the highest income.

.

"OH yeah machines should do all the undesirable jobs. Listen to your arrogance."

It is called technology, not arrogance. Welcome to the 21st century. We have things called machines that can do the work humans once did.

.

"People can work hard at any job but it doesn't mean the should make as mucjh as everybody else"

Why don't you at least read the post before you comment on it?

Physically or mentally difficult jobs, like coal mining or engineering, will get paid more than jobs that are not difficult, like cashier.

That is because, for the most part, easy jobs are more desirable than hard jobs. And if you don't pay hard jobs more, everyone will do the easy jobs and you won't have enough people to do the hard jobs.

So we have to pay the hard jobs enough extra money to attract enough workers to do them.

.

"Your thinking seem very Communistic"

Communism is a hypothetical stage society will reach once it develops the technology to eliminate scarcity. Once you eliminate scarcity, you don't need money or property or government. Technology enables you to reach such an abundance that you no longer need goods and services to be rationed with money, people can take all they want. And automation is so advanced, all the jobs nobody wants to do are done by machines, so you don't need to pay people to work.

No society has ever achieved communism. We do not have the technology to achieve it. I advocate the use of money, prices, markets for goods and services and working for an income. So I do not advocate communism or anything "communistic."

.

"Isn't it funny how all the leaders in Communist nations are wealthy and privileged but the people suffer? Yeah that's just a great system to emulate isn't it"

Show me the specific quote in any of my posts or comments where I advocate communist leaders are wealthy and the rest should suffer?

I want to put an end to that kind of system. You should have a right to a job that pays fairly. Communist and capitalist leaders should not have the authority to steal everyone's income.

.

"Yeah you say it's all luck. That's definjitely the argument of a loser."

You have the secret formula for guaranteed success in the market? Did you learn it from a late-night, get-rich-quick infomercial?

Maybe you should teach it to any of the Fortune 1000 companies who all regularly launch products and services that fail in the market. They would love to learn how to never lose in the market.

.

"$115k for a janitor,you're out of your mind."

So now you want to dictate how much janitors are allowed to make? Go ahead, Dear Leader, what kind of life of misery should a janitor be condemned to? Do you get off on seeing people suffer? Maybe you should take a pill for that?

.

"I'm guessing you haven't gotten far in life or you are a perpetual college student who thinks they know what is best for everyone."

Since you asked, I went to the top business school in the country, worked for the Federal Reserve, worked as an investment banker (which is one of the most difficult jobs to get in this world), and founded and owned several companies both large and small.

[-] -1 points by Perspect1ve (-107) 1 year ago

You stated everyone should make $115k didn't you? Investment banker? What the hell are you doing here? They hate you.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 1 year ago

No, I did not say that everyone should get paid $115k. Read the post or read my responses to your questions.

[-] 2 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 2 years ago

Glad your back !

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

thanks. lol. I'm keeping up the good fight!

[-] 1 points by urza9814 (1) 2 years ago

I want to support this, but you have TOTALLY misunderstood what GDP is and how it works.

You don't want GDP. With a wealth redistribution scheme you need to look at per capita income -- which is the sum of the annual income of every US citizen, divided by the number of citizens. And in 2010, that number was $38,611. (see http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0104547.html)

Now, that number may be ignoring other sources of wealth -- corporate profits, investments, etc...but that's the true average (mean) income. And using GDP is ignoring a lot of costs. Things like debt and trade deficits that take wealth out of our borders.

So in reality, it's hard to know exactly, but I'd bet the minimum wage you'd be able to realistically get would be somewhere in the middle -- say, $75,000. Still a hell of a lot better than current wages, but $115,000 is not at all realistic.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I assure you my understanding of economics and GDP are accurate!

GDP does represent total income as I explain here if you are not familiar with economics. If we paid every person in the US an equal income, then yes it would be $38k. But I am not saying we should do that. We should not pay infants a $38k yearly salary!!

What we should do is pay 100% of our income to workers. Workers make up a fraction of our total population. And when you go through the numbers, which I do here, you wind up with the incomes I give in this post.

Also, GDP does not ignore any cost. It includes debt, trade deficits and every single other cost our economy incurs.

This wiki article might help you in better understanding what GDP is. GDP equals total goods and services produced. GDP also equals total income paid out. And GDP also equals total expenses incurred throughout the entire economy.

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 2 years ago

I submit that the fault, dear Brutus, is not in capitalism.
It is the EFFECT of capitalism on our government.
While making massive changes to the world's economy may be intellectually stimulating, reality must be considered. Capitalism worked well until the 1970s with the Powell memo and the Reagan presidency. You mention a general strike - theoretically powerful - and totally impossible.

Please consider how many of our current major problems would NOT be on their way to being solved by passing a constitutional amendment to sever the tie of money to government.


Citizens United & Corporate Personhood Amendment

http://corporationsarenotpeople.webuda.com

For a complete analysis of the amendment issue,
and the text of all amendments, and a comparison of all of the amendments, and the Citizens United case transcript, and the Citizens United decision, and the Buckley decision and analysis of corporate personhood and analysis of Article III and the ABC News poll and the PFAW poll and our voting bloc plan

http://corporationsarenotpeople.webuda.com
no password or signup JOIN US> OWS: http://nycga.net/groups/restore-democracy
REGULAR MEETINGS: Wednesdays 5:30-7:30PM @ 60 Wall St – The Atrium

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I submit to you, dear Caesar, that the Emperor has no clothes.

Capitalism IS the problem.

All the problems that exist today - poverty, financial struggle, enormous inequality, lack of access to an education, lack of healthcare, unaffordable homes - all existed prior to the 1970s.

That's because capitalism is a system that allocates income based on bargaining power. That will always result in enormous income inequality where a few at the top take most of the income and leave the vast majority broke.

Today that inequality is certainly worse than it was before the 1970s during what Krugman calls the Great Compression. But let's not pretend that there weren't enormous economic problems during that time.

If you were to get your amendment, it will not make every worker wealthy, or raise the minimum wage to $115k, or reduce the work week to 20 hours, or pay students to attend school, or make housing affordable by offering 100% mortgages at 0% interest or guarantee you a pension.

And since all of those benefits are roughly what you would get if workers organized into a single union, and since that is a significant upgrade for the vast, overwhelming majority of workers, forming a union is more likely than impossible.

But most importantly, an amendment is pointless. You can never take money out of politics. Unless you shut down every privately owned media outlet from tv stations to newspapers to simple blogs, like a totalitarian tyrant, money will rule our politics.

[-] 1 points by April (3196) 2 years ago

Agree. Capitalisms not perfect but it has far too many benefits that other systems cannot provide. End neo-liberal policies, and God willing, the corporate personhood and money is speech nonsense in elections - would go a tremendously long way in improving things.

Sadly however, I have serious doubts that an amendment is possible. Not that it isn't worth trying. But I see this as more of a long long term prospect. May never happen. May be a possibility if there is an enormously major campaign scandal some day. But in the mean time, we need less batshit crazy neo-liberal policies.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Take a look around. Nearly the entire world is capitalist and the majority are poor and struggling. What benefit does it provide? The only claim that can be made is it is better than a backwards, peasant country that turned into a corrupt, totalitarian, undemocratic soviet system.

A what point do the apologists realize those are not the only 2 alternatives?

Our current capitalist system is certainly not better than a system that allocates income based on how hard you work (which is the ONLY fair economic system) which would raise the minimum wage to $115k and reduce the work week to 20 hours, as outlined in this post.

50% of all Americans are living in or near poverty, 97% of all workers are earning a below average income, 50% of wage earners are making less than $26k, 18% of all available workers cannot find a full-time job, and 55% of the people who do work are being wasted by having them do pointless jobs that machines can already do which means capitalism is wasting just under 70% of our potential labor/productivity.

Where are these benefits you speak of!?!

Capitalism has been a disaster.

[-] 1 points by dreamingforward (394) from Tacoma, WA 2 years ago

Capitalism is already somewhat democratic: you vote with your dollars. The thing which is not as was not democratic is the allocation of land in which most wealth was acquired. At best it was arbitrary, and worst it went to the most violent.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I agree with you about the allocation of land. Twain said there is not a single piece of land that is rightfully owned. It was all acquired at some point through plunder.

And we know Mother Nature doesn't have a store where you can legitimately purchase land to privatize. So capitalism rests on a foundation of theft. Because without land you don't have resources and without resources, you don't have an economy. Under this premise, I don't know how anyone can justify capitalism morally. The whole world is corrupt.

I would have you reconsider your idea that voting with your dollars makes capitalism somewhat democratic.

First, you don't need capitalism in order to have a market where consumer purchases dictate production. You could have democratic market socialism (which is what I advocate in this post and what most of the peer reviewed socialist economists advocated).

Secondly, and more importantly, democracy does not mean voting. As I write in this post, democracy is a Greek word. But it is not a Greek word for "voting" or "mob rule" or "majority wins". It is Greek for "people power". It means power rests with everyone equally. It is a society based on equal political power and equal freedom.

Since everything you do in society requires money, your income determines how much political power you have and determines how much freedom you have to live the way you want.

A person with $1 billion has 50,000 times more power than a person with $20,000 to get someone elected to government or to lobby government to their cause or to use the media to lobby the public to their cause. And they have 50,000 times more freedom to live how they want - such as to live in whatever house or neighborhood they want, to drive any car they want, to attend any school they want, to get any medical treatment they want, to pursue any hobby they want, to travel to any place they want or to work any job they want.

A society where some have 50,000 times more political power and freedom than others is not democratic.

In order to have democracy, a society where power rests with everyone equally, income must rest with everyone equally. But income is also used as an incentive to get people to do difficult work and give their maximum effort.

So the only way to have a society that is democratic and the only way to also have an economy that works well, is to have a system where differences in income are limited by law to just what is necessary to get people to do difficult work and to get people to give their maximum effort.

[-] 1 points by Jojo1919 (0) 2 years ago

wow - this post is probably one of the most simplistic things i have ever read

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

The amount of text we can include in a post is limited. But if you click on the links at the end of the post, the concepts are explained in detail and backed by current government data.

If you have genuine questions about the idea and how it works, I can answer them.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Those people represent the top 3% of the population. The bottom 97% DO NOT HAVE EVERYTHING THEY WANT!!! When you look at the entire population, not just rich people, you will find that people want far, far, far more than we can produce. In order to meet the demand of the bottom 97% we need more workers, not less.

But you said that we would cut the work week to 20 hours because of automation. Make up your mind.

If it's possible to produce everything that everyone needs with a 20 hour work week, then it's possible (and likely) that we will instead end up with people working 40+ hour weeks and high unemployment. Unless we use work conservation.

But see here: http://occupywallst.org/forum/prelude-to-war-need-confirmation-from-ows/

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I don't say we can produce everything everyone needs with a 20-hour week. I say we can produce what we currently produce with a 20-hour week. But we currently do not produce everything everyone wants!

We currently produce enough to pay everyone from $115k to $460k. But most people would want to consume more than that if they had the opportunity. People who get paid millions or hundreds of millions of dollars don't just consume $100k and save the rest.

So we will continue to grow the economy which will require more work. People may choose to only work 20 hours but that would be because of a lifestyle choice, it won't because we ran out of work to do.

We are not anywhere near running out of work to do!!

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I went ahead and posted a comment on your post.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

The people at the top are unfairly taking income they have not earned and do not deserve and they are the reason why everyone else is broke.

Allowing the top 3% to take as much as 50,000 times or even 50 times more income than everyone else is unfair and undeserved because:

1) They don't work 50 to 50,000 times harder than everyone else.

2) They didn't earn this money from willing consumers in the market. When consumers purchase a product, they are not in any way endorsing the way income is allocated in the economy. Yankees fans buy Yankees tickets because they think the game is worth the ticket price. They don't buy tickets because they believe they should make $80k less at their job so that A-Rod, the Yankees third baseman, can make $25 million at his. When you pay A-Rod $25 million, that is $25 million less that every other worker in the economy can make. If consumers had a direct say on how workers were valued, no worker would ever be able to earn thousands of times more income than another worker because they would never be able to convince consumers to take a huge pay cut at their job in order to pay their inflated salaries.

3) They shouldn't have the power to force the rest of society into poverty or financial struggle. When A-Rod takes $25 million in income, that is $25 million less the rest of the workforce can make. The top 3% take so much of the available income, they leave the bottom 97% of all workers earning a below average income and the bottom 50% of all Americans in poverty or close to it.

4) There is no economic justification that requires us to pay them this amount in order for the economy to work well. The only economic reason for paying one person more than another is to get them to do difficult work and give their maximum effort. We don't need to pay people 50 to 50,000 times more income in order to get people to work hard.

5) It makes society undemocratic since their 50 to 50,000 times greater income gives them 50 to 50,000 times greater political power and greater freedom than everyone else.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

HOW INVESTING WORKS

Since all production comes from work, it is only fair that all income be paid to workers. If you decide to participate in the democratic sector by working for a democratic firm, you can not earn an income from investing. In order to get paid an income, you must work.

Since nobody is paid on the money they invest, that will essentially put an end to people investing their own money. But an economy needs investments to run, so we will just use public funds for investment.

Investment funds will come from whatever the natural savings rate is in the economy. Not everyone spends 100% of their income as soon as they get it. The money that they do not spend is the natural savings rate.

This money would be allocated by the Fed to independent banks for them to invest. Since these are public funds and not the savings of any particular investor, nobody gets paid any interest. So borrowers would not be charged interest.

If the natural savings rate is not enough to meet our investment needs, an investment tax would be levied on the gross sales of companies and the revenue collected would be added to the total investment funds available.

The Fed would manage this and they will be responsible for making sure there was always enough investment revenue available to launch enough new businesses and to expand enough existing businesses to fully employ everyone who wants to work for a democratic firm.

So unlike the capitalist sector, you a guaranteed a job in the democratic sector.

Meeting the demand for personal loans like mortgages can be done in a couple of different ways. One way is to make mortgages interest free. Since half the money you pay towards a home goes towards a house, this will cut the price of homes in half. However, without interest, you need some other mechanism to match supply with demand.

If more people want mortgages than there is money available, we would normally raise interest rates. This increases the price of the loan which decreases the demand for borrowing.

In order to get supply to match demand in the system proposed here, we will adjust the loan repayment term instead of adjusting interest rates. Instead of changing the interest rate, the Federal Reserve will change the amount of days or months required for repayment.

For example, if you borrow $5000 and the current term is 50 months, your monthly payment would be $100. But if the demand for loans exceeds the supply, the central bank may decide to cut the term on that kind of loan to 40 months. Now if you borrow that same $5000 with a 40 month term, your monthly payment would increase from $100 to $125.

That increase in monthly payment would in effect make the loan more expensive, which then cuts down on the demand for borrowing.

In other words, decreasing the loan term has the same effect as raising interest rates - it increases the monthly payment and discourages people from borrowing.

Another way of allocating mortgages is to just charge an interest rate and let the interest rate regulate demand like it does in the capitalist system. The difference though is that the interest revenue generated will be added to the total income paid out in the National Compensation Plan. So no investor would profit from loans. Each worker would share in the interest revenue generated.

.

Private Investment

Keep in mind that this does not mean people would not be able to start their own business by investing their own money. If you have an idea for a new good or service, you will take your proposal to as many investment banks as you want. If they think it is viable, they will give you the funds to market your idea.

But if you cannot get funding and still believe in your idea, and want to stay within the democratic sector, you could launch your business with your own private funds or funds from a group of private investors. And you would be allowed to take enough income from that company to pay back your investment plus pay your workers up to whatever the maximum is allowed under the national compensation plan.

If the minimum income was $115k, you could certainly work for the company and pay yourself less than that amount. You would also be able to hire workers and pay them less than the $115k if you were able to convince workers to do that. Perhaps those workers might take a lower income because they believe in what you are doing.

If the company generates some success, you can then take the company public. You would return to a bank with proof that the company is financially viable and the bank would properly fund you so that your investment money was returned in full and you were able to pay your workers the minimums under the national compensation plan.

[-] 1 points by riethc (1149) 2 years ago

Stop giving people false ideas of "democracy". Anyone who isn't a Utopian theorizer would realize quite quickly that this idea of "democracy" making everyone wealthy, healthy, more just, more moral, etc. is a hoax. Only if another system was doing all the work could you have this perfect form of "democracy".

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You are terribly misinformed.

Everyone absolutely should be wealthy. We produce $15.4 trillion in goods and services every year.

That is just under $50,000 per year for every man, woman and child. That is $200,000 per year for a family of 4. That is $65 for each hour each of our workers work. That is $135,000 for each full-time employee.

That is enough to make everyone in this country wealthy.

The reason why everyone is not wealthy, the reason why 97% make less than the amounts above, the reason why 50% live in or near poverty is because we have an economic system that allows a very small group of people at the top to unfairly take most of everyone else's income.

The reason why these people can get away with taking everyone's income is because people like you have no clue how badly they are getting ripped off in our system.

You need to read this post again and get better informed. People are taking advantage of your ignorance.

[-] 1 points by riethc (1149) 2 years ago

You have no economic model. You simply say "democracy". This is stupid.

[-] -1 points by atki4564 (1259) from Lake Placid, FL 2 years ago

Here's a very detailed mathematical model of a direct democracy which could generally achieve the objectives he cites (albeit I don't completely agree with some of his assertions). Do you see any mathematical flaws in this model?

https://docs.google.com/a/strategicinternationalsystems.com/document/pub?id=1mKKLMTIyvRCLK2ppPj_GDjdieCvJnATaZaCmlajubWU

[-] 1 points by MEHassa (24) 2 years ago

Demand political parties to be owned by the public, don't allow donations from multinational companies. Donations should be limited to 10 USD per person per month. Or state owned political parties.

I agree if people take care of each other, but there are people who just want to cause trouble, they should be put into jails.

The scarcity of the world is not of time nor energy nor money but of mutual solutions. People who provide solutions deserve to be rich, but people who don't provide solutions and blatantly cause trouble without remorse should be stopped.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"don't allow donations from multinational companies"

That would do nothing.

If you banned political donations, those corporations would just run their own ads instead of donating the money to a campaign.

.

"People who provide solutions deserve to be rich"

Everyone who works deserves to be rich. There is more than enough income available to pay every worker enough to make them wealthy when we allocate income fairly as described in this post.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

great video

[-] 1 points by Javis (35) 2 years ago

I think this is a good place to have you investigate Social Credit. The Wiki sums it up the most dispassionately, the "bleedingindebt" website puts it the most effectively, and the Secretariat website is the main site for it, and contains resources such as writings from CH Douglas (which are very well written, might I add.) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_Credit http://bleedingindebt.com/ http://douglassocialcredit.com/

[-] 1 points by Pottsandahalf (141) 2 years ago

I can't wait for this system, personally. I wouldn't have to do annnnything and get $115,000 for it. Hooray!

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You might want to work on your reading comprehension skills. Nowhere in this proposal does it say you get $115k for doing nothing. The $115k is paid to workers.

[-] 0 points by Pottsandahalf (141) 2 years ago

But if you're guaranteed a job then you don't have to do anything. Duh

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I'm pretty sure a policy would be implemented that revokes the privilege of a guaranteed job for someone who constantly gets fired because they refuse to work. Duh.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Why would business managers care if someone didn't work if there are no profits because the business is publicly owned? :S

Unless there is a central organization that assigns management to companies... hmm... and gives them special privileges if they do a good job of meeting production targets...

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

People do take pride in their work. Roughly 30% of our economy is publicly owned and non-profit (NASA, military, police, fire, garbage, schools, hospitals, universities, etc.) and they are managed as well as privately owned companies.

But management will most likely be a performance based job. So your pay depends on how well the company you manage does financially.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Management can increase performance in ways that may seem harmful to employees. Would current working conditions in warehouses for online retailers stay the same, or would they change?

http://motherjones.com/print/161491

A company that demanded everyone reach a high 'rate' of production, or else the employee is fired, would have higher productivity than companies that didn't. You mentioned somewhere that you could still fire employees who refused to work, so would employees still be forced to work 12 hour days with mandatory overtime each week?

Anyway you've completed avoided the topic of the number of jobs. It's all very fine for everyone with a job to make $115k/year, but it doesn't help the people without a job.

In response to the hamburger thing, it seems that to prevent shortages businesses would be allowed to raise prices, especially since it would improve the business's performance and thus management's bonus. So now hamburgers cost $10 each, or if the prices of other things (like rent) stay the same maybe even $100 each.

(Clarification: in a planned economy, shortages happen because while everyone has a job, that work is not efficiently allocated so while products are available, they're not what people need. In a market economy, shortages are less likely while unemployment is more likely because efficiency is higher overall. If automation reduces the amount of work available, there's no guarantee everyone can get a job unless you force companies to accept more employees (planned economy) or you have a mechanism to encourage people to work less than full time.)

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

Misaki, Wouldn't lowering the full time work requirement go further to relieve the unemployment rate than work conservation. It seems like if full time employment were lowered to six hours a day, this would entice employers to implement four shifts; where as the principals of work conservation could have the unintended consequence of enticing employers to guilt employees into working longer or implement forty hour work weeks, so as to capture cheaper labor costs.

Your idea is interesting and clever because it has positive environmental implications. I think it would work better if taxes were increased for those who chose to work longer and for those who chose to work their labor longer than twenty hours.

[-] 3 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

unfortunately, many labor benefits are only in place for those that work 21 hours or more

companies have be skirting benefits by keeping employees to half time

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

One example of this is health insurance.

This is why it would help to change tax laws concerning health benefits. But even without doing this, a business might be able to use one of the existing tax-advantaged options just as a deduction from people's salary, as long as someone is working at least, say, 15 hours a week so their salary can reasonably cover that cost.

If skilled workers choose to work less, then businesses can either pay enough to those workers to make up for the lost full-time benefits or lose those employees. It's that simple. (As long as there isn't any kind of moral bias in favor of full-time workers, which is why it's important for everyone to understand that working more doesn't help the unemployed.)

For the "mandatory health insurance due to Obamacare" thing: many businesses, like McDonald's, already have exemptions because the requirement for a full plan would put 'undue stress on the business' or something. It would help to change the law but a business with many employees part-time would probably have a good argument for a waiver anyway.

Basically... read "I Was a Warehouse Wage Slave" for an understanding of how even when working full-time+, a worker can still get a bad deal. It's all just supply and demand. (...which I linked before as well~)

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

so you are saying if the minimum weekly full time standard, forty hours a week, was lowered, this would entice employees to employ people a few hours less than required to be full time? You make a valuable point. I guess it is better to just mandate a livable wage and extra taxes to those who out source and off shore jobs out of the nation.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

gotta wonder if those jobs in other nations didn't already exist

[-] -3 points by DKAtoday (27542) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Yep many businesses love Hiring temp employment. No overhead. When the employee reaches near mandatory hiring as specified in the temp. contract - oops this person just did not work out - or we seem to have lost the need for that position - or sorry we are experiencing a work slow down.

[-] 2 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

I am glad you are actually making an argument. This is the response, from the dedicated site:

Alternative 1: shorter work week.
France has tried this with a 35-hour work week, although it's slightly more complicated than that since it's based off the entire year as well. The problem with this solution is simple: if you want an intermediate level of income, somewhere between full-time work and doing nothing, the most efficient way to get it is to work as hard as possible for a while so you can get as much overtime pay as you can, and then to quit working. On a shorter timescale this is difficult because you lose work skills if you take a few months off from work, so people have the idea of spending several years working as hard as possible and then going into retirement.

But not only do you not know if that the day when you can retire will ever come, the government actively makes it more difficult with its policies meant to lead to full employment without sufficient taxation to avoid inflation. People are forced to entrust their money with specialists in the financial markets, which can lead to drastic losses from pension funds when these specialists incorrectly evaluate risks such as the recent financial crisis. Reducing the work week would just make these problems worse.

Two other considerations. While working more per week leads to decreased productivity, a study on overtime in construction work (one of the links from this post) found that working fewer days with longer hours resulted in higher productivity than more days with shorter hours. So working 4 days at 7.5 hours would be more productive than 5 days at 6 hours.

The second consideration is (not at http://www.shorterworkweek.com/ which you might find interesting, but rather is) from the "21-hour work week" paper. Page 12 (or 14),

Utah, USA: The four-day week, 2008/2009
In June 2008, the state of Utah in the USA became the first to instigate a mandatory four-day week for public sector workers, in order to save energy and cut carbon and costs. The ‘Working4Utah’ initiative shifted the standard week from five 8-hour days to four 10-hour days, Monday to Thursday. So the total number of hours that people spent in paid employment stayed the same, while they had three full, consecutive days each week away from the workplace. Altogether, 18,000 of the state’s 25,000 employees were involved in the one- year experiment. Evaluations of the first year, reported for a symposium of the Connecticut Law Review, showed positive responses from employees as well as users of state services. Satisfaction rates increased as the experiment went on. In May 2009, more than half said they were more productive working a four-day week and three-quarters said they preferred the new arrangement. Reductions in absenteeism and overtime saved the state £4.1 million dollars. The four-day week helped reduce carbon emissions by 4,546 metric tons, other greenhouse gas emissions by 8,000 tons and petrol consumption by 744,000 gallons. Miles travelled in state-owned vehicles dropped by 3 million, saving Utah $1.4 million over the first year. Eighty-two per cent of employees said they wanted the four-day week to continue when the year was up.

(long comment is long!)

You said,

the unintended consequence of enticing employers to guilt employees into working longer . . . so as to capture cheaper labor costs.

Response:

Q. How does paying workers less for working more convince a business to reduce their hours?

Businesses would be perfectly content with most people continuing to work full time with this concept. Any pressure to reduce hours would come from the employees themselves. Working, and earning, as much as possible is currently seen as one way to identify an employee who is dedicated to a business and to having a successful career that benefits the business as much as it does the individual, so this concept functions by introducing an alternative idea of how to show you can achieve your own goals and anything that a business can require of you without working full time. Instead of providing extra value to a business by working unpaid overtime with a monthly salary, you would provide extra value by completing your responsibilities more quickly and saving the business a small, and symbolic—but important—additional wage cost.

I think it would work better if taxes were increased for those who chose to work longer and for those who chose to work their labor longer than twenty hours.

The fact that it is the corporation that benefits if the individual works longer is a "feature", not a "bug". Businesses would have an incentive to give people an actual choice to work less because it could lead to higher efficiency. From another post,

The three main benefits to employees that a business could extract profit from are efficiency increases for employees that value their time, more dedication to the business for employees that value the option to choose how much to work, and lower hiring costs for employees that value stability in a time of economic depression over continuing to work full time.

(Efficiency increases explained in more detail here).

If it was just "higher taxes", it would just be too exploitable. There are already many workers who are forced to work 'off the clock' with unpaid overtime. The difference here is that both the workers and the business would have an incentive to be dishonest about how much someone worked. Someone would actually be working full-time, but the business would report them as only working 20 hours/week at a higher wage rate so the employee could avoid paying higher taxes.

When it is the business that benefits (lower wage rate) from the employee working more, the incentive to work less can exist.

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

My employer just went from working me forty eight hours a week, six days a week, to working twelve hours a day, seven days every two weeks, and i have seen my fuel cast go down substantially, which more than makes up for the week I only work thirty-six hours. So i do see how environmental gains are achieved through the ten hour public sector work week. Also the fact that I have more days off, I believe i am more productive when working so what you say about construction workers makes sense.

I'll look into those links you provided, thanks.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

I don't know how people find new posts in a thread this long lol. (When there is no notification.) But I am glad you found something useful in those links.

[+] -4 points by DKAtoday (27542) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

That would suck. I worked 2nd & 3rd shifts for many years - you have no life as everyone is on a different ( daylight ) schedule. This society is not round the clock worker friendly.

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

well, most factory work and other services, work twenty four, seven. I work from 7pm to 7:30 am seven out of fourteen days every two weeks so i understand your gripe as an employee, but the reality is that as long as companies offer jobs that produce twenty four hours a day, they have to be included into the calculus.

Just think if we went to a thirty five hour work week. If an employee worked six days a week, that would be six hours a day, giving more people time off during the day. Or if we conserved work, like Misaki suggests, then this, too, would give more people more free day light hours.

[+] -5 points by DKAtoday (27542) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Imagine if companies took some of their profits and reinvested in the business and opened new facilities to support the production needed.

People working during the day and having a normal family life.

Wouldn't that just suck.

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

I don't believe it is a sucky idea, but it is a lofty goal. What incentives do you suggest to make your mental image a reality? I believe you'd have to tax employers more for every hour they worked labor past five O' clock PM. or give them a tax credit for opening new felicities. Your idea has potential. Maybe you should develop it more.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Would current working conditions in warehouses for online retailers stay the same"

Warehouses can be fully automated. As explained in this post, the goal of a democratic society is to free people from jobs. We don't need people to pick and pack anymore.

.

"You mentioned somewhere that you could still fire employees who refused to work, so would employees still be forced to work 12 hour days with mandatory overtime each week?"

You own the company. It is socialism. You can work as many hours as you want. The week is only 20 hours long if you work full time. But nobody is going to force you to work any hours. You can work 0, 1, 10 or 40 hours per week. You are the boss of you.

Since all the employees are essentially the owners of the company, most companies will be run as a ROWE (Results Only Work Environment) for most of their full-time employees.

.

"Anyway you've completed avoided the topic of the number of jobs. It's all very fine for everyone with a job to make $115k/year, but it doesn't help the people without a job."

You have completely avoided reading the very short post that actually describes what I advocate and how democratic market socialism works. Everyone is guaranteed a job. And everyone does not make $115k.

.

"In response to the hamburger thing, it seems that to prevent shortages businesses would be allowed to raise prices, especially since it would improve the business's performance and thus management's bonus. So now hamburgers cost $10 each, or if the prices of other things (like rent) stay the same maybe even $100 each."

I don't think we ever had a shortage of beef. Socialism does not mean people will all of a sudden demand more beef or that people will stop producing beef. So I don't know why you think beef supply or demand would change.

You can't arbitrarily raise your hamburger prices to $100 because you will lose all your customers to your competitor who is still charging $1.

.

"in a planned economy, shortages happen because while everyone has a job, that work is not efficiently allocated so while products are available, they're not what people need."

I advocate a market economy, not a planned economy. Goods and services are allocated by the market. So consumers decide where people work based on how they spend their money.

.

"If automation reduces the amount of work available, there's no guarantee everyone can get a job unless you force companies to accept more employees"

We will never run out of work to do. We can dream up more ideas and goals to pursue than we could ever possibly fulfill.

But the goal of socialism is to achieve communism. Communism is a society where automation is so advanced, machines do all the undesirable jobs, so we no longer need to pay people to work. And production is so advanced, we no longer have scarcity. We are able to produce everything everyone wants. So we no longer need to ration things. That means we no longer need money. Everything is free and work is completely voluntary.

But we are a ways off from achieving that and most likely wil not achieve that in our lifetimes.

In the meantime, the goal of management is to fire as many employees as they can by automating their job. We will be making a deliberate, concerted effort to automate every job possible. As explained in the post, we can immediately automate 55% of the jobs we currently do. The goal of management is to meet customer demand with zero employees.

The job of the central bank is to maintain 100% employment. So they will make sure there is always enough investment money available to fund enough new businesses, expansions and ideas to employ everyone who is unemployed.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Since all the employees are essentially the owners of the company, most companies will be run as a ROWE (Results Only Work Environment) for most of their full-time employees.

You seem to be saying that it would be possible to work full-time, but be paid less than $115k for 40 hours per week if you spend 90% of your time on Facebook. Since this contradicts your statement that the minimum wage would be $115k/year, I will ignore this comment about a system "wherein employees are paid for results (output) rather than the number of hours worked."

So everyone would be paid at least $115k/year, including slackers, and including people who "very productively" spend every day filling out paperwork and requesting paperwork from other people.

You have completely avoided reading the very short post that actually describes what I advocate and how democratic market socialism works. Everyone is guaranteed a job.

Just like in the USSR. If jobs are not available, then the state (since you keep saying this would all be controlled by the state, with incentives for management) would "create" them! Even if all they involve is filling out paperwork and waiting for the work day to end.

You can't arbitrarily raise your hamburger prices to $100 because you will lose all your customers to your competitor who is still charging $1.

Your competitor would soon run out of hamburgers if everyone makes at least $115k working full time. At that point, people will begin buying $100 hamburgers.

I advocate a market economy, not a planned economy. Goods and services are allocated by the market. So consumers decide where people work based on how they spend their money.

A market economy does not lead to everyone being guaranteed a job. Take your pick.

We will never run out of work to do. We can dream up more ideas and goals to pursue than we could ever possibly fulfill.

...and more than we can possibly have time to do.

This, maybe, is where you fail to comprehend. Rich people have plenty of money, and might have endless goals, but still spend a finite amount of money which over time (corresponding to higher inequality, which peaked in the US in 1929 and before this recent recession) has decreased relative to the amount they are earning, and this limits their ability to "create jobs" with consumption.

That means we no longer need money. Everything is free and work is completely voluntary.

As pointed out in ... well, some article I don't remember, but this NYT article mentions the robots part... Apple used to have a high-tech factory with lots of robots.

Then it moved its operations to China, because people there can work for less than robots. But really besides the point. Another discussion I stumbled upon last year talked about how even if we had Star Trek-style replicators, there would still be scarce resources like land... unless you can replicate entire planets.

Now, it would be possible for the US to provide everyone with a 'basic income' at minimal cost to society... but the US had that before and got rid of the welfare state in the 1990's because people didn't like it.

The central bank has the 'dual mandate' of unemployment and low inflation. The "negative interest rate money" described elsewhere on these forums would actually probably be the most effective way other than work conservation to cause full employment (even if it would require making most transactions electronic, etc.) but I view neither that 'natural money idea' nor this wealth redistribution idea to be politically practical. Not because the rich oppose it, but because the majority of the population would oppose it.

Employment would be higher than it is now if there were higher taxes (or "profit redistribution", while ignoring inequality from the "incentives to management" you mention) and wealth redistribution to job holders regardless of a business's revenues, but with the trend of automation you mention (disregarding global trade, which is effectively the same anyway as it increases "value" for a dollar spent) there will not be enough jobs unless people work less.

Automation would make it possible for society to reduce the work week to 20 hours. That does not mean it is politically viable. See comments regarding the 21-hour work week; while some people support it, even the authors admit that "forcing" people to not work more than 21 hours is unrealistic.

The reason people (especially males) continue to work 40+ hours per week is entirely psychological/social. The answer is not taxes and wealth redistribution; it is work conservation precisely because it creates new social standards with regards to work.

In other words, suppose your wealth redistribution suggestion was taken by society. If everyone worked less, they could still make $58k/yr by working 20 hours/week. But you have not presented an argument for why signicant numbers of people would choose to do that, especially if overtime is available to increase your wage rate from $55/hour for "unskilled work" to $83/hour.

Again, the central component of work conservation is a reward for working less, instead of rewarding people for working more. Without significant numbers of people working less, the automation you allude to will only make unemploment worse in the future.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"You seem to be saying that it would be possible to work full-time, but be paid less than $115k for 40 hours per week if you spend 90% of your time on Facebook"

Read my post. You don't get paid to spend your time on facebook. Your comments are getting more ridiculous. You get paid $115k for working and the week will be reduced to 20 hours when we automate half the jobs.

.

"I will ignore this comment about a system 'wherein employees are paid for results (output) rather than the number of hours worked.'"

A ROWE worker is not expected to work more than 40 hours in today's system. Otherwise, the whole point of ROWE would be lost.

The point of ROWE is that you are not paid to work a certain schedule. You are paid to complete a certain amount of work. So you set your own schedule and never have to answer to a boss about whether you are in the office or not. You can never show up to the office at all if you want and take vacations whenever you want. You control where and when you work.

.

"So everyone would be paid at least $115k/year, including slackers"

Managers, who are responsible for the financial performance of companies, are never going to want to pay people who are slacking. They will get fired.

Half the jobs we do in our current system are pointless. Socialism puts an end to that. There will be no paper shufflers or doormen or sales people or cashiers like there are in a capitalist system because that is a waste of human life.

.

"Just like in the USSR. If jobs are not available, then the state (since you keep saying this would all be controlled by the state, with incentives for management)"

I don't advocate the system used in the USSR. I advocate the opposite. And I don't advocate a state run system. All companies are individually controlled and operated.

Why do you want to bring back slave labor and concentration camps? That is racist.

.

"Your competitor would soon run out of hamburgers if everyone makes at least $115k working full time"

lol. Why did we run out of hamburgers? Your comments keep getting funnier.

.

"A market economy does not lead to everyone being guaranteed a job. Take your pick."

The market means consumers decide what is produced based on how they spend their money. It has nothing to do with whether we have full employment. You can have full employment and a market for goods and services.

You can't have slavery and concentration camps without people thinking you are despicable. If you don't want to be despicable, stop advocating for slavery.

.

"Rich people have plenty of money, and might have endless goals, but still spend a finite amount of money which over time (corresponding to higher inequality, which peaked in the US in 1929 and before this recent recession) has decreased relative to the amount they are earning, and this limits their ability to "create jobs" with consumption."

That is how capitalism works. That is a problem of capitalism. I do not advocate capitalism. Read the post.

Don't you know that blacks prefer not to be enslaved even though some fought for the South? This is what you don't understand. Slavery is wrong.

.

"it moved its operations to China, because people there can work for less than robots."

Capitalism is all about exploitation. Apple exploited the desperation and poverty of Chinese people to get them to work for cheaper than machines. That is why capitalism is inhumane. Machines should do all the work and all humans regardless of nationality should share in its production.

.

"there would still be scarce resources like land"

You don't need our current economic system and money if the only thing that is scarce is some land.

.

"but the US had that before and got rid of the welfare state in the 1990's"

The US never had a basic income.

.

"this wealth redistribution idea to be politically practical. Not because the rich oppose it, but because the majority of the population would oppose it."

97% of the population would get a pay increase with the wealth redistribution described in this post. So they would NOT oppose it!! People want MORE money, not less.

.

"See comments regarding the 21-hour work week; while some people support it, even the authors admit that "forcing" people to not work more than 21 hours is unrealistic."

You can't do it in today's capitalist system. That would make everyone even more poor than they already are. It can only be done in a socialist system.

.

"If everyone worked less, they could still make $58k/yr by working 20 hours/week. But you have not presented an argument for why signicant numbers of people would choose to do that"

I never said they would.

I just said we would be able to pay the $115k for working 20 hours. If they chose to work 40 hours, they would make $230k.

.

"Without significant numbers of people working less, the automation you allude to will only make unemploment worse in the future."

There are so many jobs we cannot automate. We won't run out of work to do in either of our lifetimes.

[-] 0 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

"this wealth redistribution idea to be politically practical. Not because the rich oppose it, but because the majority of the population would oppose it."

97% of the population would get a pay increase with the wealth redistribution described in this post. So they would NOT oppose it!! People want MORE money, not less.

If it's such a foregone conclusion, I suppose there is no need for me to discuss this anymore since most people who hear this idea will immediately support it.

"See comments regarding the 21-hour work week; while some people support it, even the authors admit that "forcing" people to not work more than 21 hours is unrealistic."

You can't do it in today's capitalist system. That would make everyone even more poor than they already are. It can only be done in a socialist system.

Well then, work hard promoting this and you should be successful.

"But you have not presented an argument for why signicant numbers of people would choose to do that"

I never said they would.

Then it leads back to the "number of jobs" and whether a company that creates unprofitable jobs would get help from the government or more profitable companies. I will see if you responded to that in another post.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Then it leads back to the "number of jobs" and whether a company that creates unprofitable jobs would get help from the government or more profitable companies"

In a market system, a company can only exist if they are producing something consumers want and for a price consumers are willing to pay. Consumer tastes and interests are impossible to predict and are constantly changing. So companies will constantly be going out of business.

Business failure is an important component of a market system. So a percentage of the workforce will always be losing their job.

However, since this is a socialist system, we have direct control over how much we invest. We use public funds for investment, we don't rely on private individuals deciding to invest. So we will ALWAYS invest whatever amount is needed to launch enough new businesses and expand enough established businesses to fully employ 100% of the people who got laid off from those failed companies.

So we will always have full employment because we will never run out of new ideas and new businesses to launch.

[-] -1 points by john23 (-272) 2 years ago

This is not true...at all. Even Rachel Maddow talks about it in her new book on why the US military hires so many more private contractors than they used to...because they do a better job at a better price. Israel hires private security firms for their airports..they do a much better job than the government ones in place in the US. There have even been states in the US that have allowed private control of airport security...and guess what...they do better. I worked in land developement for civil engineering projects for a private firm..and half the time we were explaining things to the government employees responsible for "approving" our plans. I'm not saying all government employees are idiots....there are very smart intelligent people in areas of government...i'm saying on average...the private sector will outperform the public. You can see this everywhere....privately controlled parks are nicer the public ones...private bathrooms are nicer than public one's....private schools outperform public schools on average....etc. etc. etc. Check out government control of cars..fast forward to the 2 minute mark:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ekDGb_J6Y1I

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

That was just one anecdotal story after another. They were not facts.

I am also not claiming that all companies should be government run monopolies. I believe companies should be independently run and compete in a free market.

The point I was making is that these people for the most part care about their work, work hard and want to produce good results even though there are no profits to be made.

You are so brainwashed with capitalism that you will even say that private bathrooms are better than public bathrooms? Really?

And I find it hard to believe Maddow said private contractors are better soldiers than our military.

[-] 0 points by john23 (-272) 2 years ago

I wrote that entire list and the one thing you argue against is bathrooms? Private schools do perform better than public schools...that is fact. If i had to choose between a private and a public bathroom.....i'm going with the private...that was more of a joke...but it gets the point across too.

Maddow - Explains in the book one of the main military reasons for hiring private contractors was cost...as they had to save from a shrinking budget.

I agree many people care about their work and want to good results....but i would argue that when there are incentives that statistically the people with incentives will outperform the people that have no incentives 100% of the time.

[-] 2 points by April (3196) 2 years ago

Wait what? 'Private schools do perform better than public schools'. You mean those private schools that cherry pick their students? There is nothing that says conclusively that private schools perform better on average. And there's much to say that some that might be performing above average are cherry picking their way to that success by weeding out lower performers. And if you think thats the way to education success, you are part of the problem.

[-] 0 points by john23 (-272) 2 years ago

Why not a voucher system...in which schools compete for the funds? That way you have the competition between schools for the best education.

[-] 3 points by April (3196) 2 years ago

Nope sorry. This leads to exclusions for most, and unfair privilege for a few. There are enrollment maximums. And the rest are left to an increasingly defunded public school which creates more problems. And becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. Defunding public schools just creates fodder for the neo-libs to point and say 'see, public schools don't work'. Of course they won't work if you keep defunding them. But that's their whole strategy. See the State of PA and their assault on public education.

Competition may be fine for some things. That doesn't mean it's fine for everything. See 'The Death and Life of the Great American School System' by Diane Ravitch. Read what she has to say about our education system. She is a former Assistant Secretary of Education under Bush. She was part of a right wing think tank on education. She has since rejected right wing education theories of competition, privatization and the like.

Besides, the best education systems in the world are public. Canada, Japan, S.Korea to name a few. And they don't compete for students using barbaric dog eat dog forms of behavior when it comes to educating their people. S.Korea has an 11 month school year I believe. And Japan holds teachers in high regards in society. Paying top dollar to recruit top graduates. We're just doing it wrong. Instead our society likes to hate on teachers and glorify and pay top dollar to MBA's and math majors to make like casino gamblers on Wall Street.

[-] 1 points by RobertL (3) 2 years ago

I really like your article however how is this going to be possible? What if I told you I have found the way to make these types of changes possible. It is very doable and achievable.

Please first see this image: http://i918.photobucket.com/albums/ad26/bobandamita/USA-flag5-1.jpg

After that, go read my site: http://www.HelpHealAmerica.org. Read it with an open mind and then contact me if you find this information interesting.

Robert

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

That picture mentioned a spiritual healer. Do you think you have a supernatural power to heal?

Your plan to fix the problems of unemployment, poverty and financial struggle from the unequal distribution of income is to get businesses to display a sign that says they aim "to do good, provide incredible value, make people happy, pay attention to the environment, etc."?

lol

[-] 1 points by RobertL (3) 2 years ago

We are all healers.

Please watch this amazing video and it will answer all your questions: The Awakening - Final Version http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dzEeq5Adi0c&feature=player_embedded

This is what Einstein said: You cannot solve a problem from the same level that the problem arose from. What does that mean? The problems you are mentioning have their root cause in humanity's thinking or consciousness. If we want healing from greed, the evils of capitalism, etc., we must think about changing our consciousness or awakening. Please read the site a few times and definitely watch the above video! Just a handful of awakened people can change the thinking of hundreds, then thousands, then tens of thousands. It can have a major effect! Just one awakened soul can start a wave that changes the thinking of millions! Gandhi comes to mind but there are so many like him. The best thing you can do is awaken yourself. What the country needs is an awakening.

The other issue is that most people in America are polarized. They cannot understand or relate to each other from their polarized position. If just one person goes around town spreading the message "Help Heal America" and influences 200 people to go to the site HelpHealAmerica.org and just watch Marianne WIlliamson's video alone which is on the first page, that will have enormous effect. Then people will start understanding why you guys are protesting. Right now people are not carrying a singular message. Please read the page on my site "Uniting All Americans". This was a actual chat I had on Yahoo. We need to come together, Tea Party and Occupy, Repubs and Democ., Conservative and Progressive in a non-confrontational way and be able to talk about the real issues so everyone understands. That is the path of healing. You need to read my site 1 or 2 times.

If you read the page on my site "Uniting All Americans" you will realize the tremendous misconceptions people have about Occupy. This is because Occupy seems confrontational to them. So does Tea Party. Help Heal America is totally non-confrontational with a heart desire to help and heal. If more and more people get into that healing energy, a world of good will come from it for all Americans, regardless of their prior thinking or background.

I agree with many of the points of your excellent article above on Capitalism, however you cannot get there from where we are without a consciousness change. We need a consciousness change. That is what Help Heal America is. Again, please read it a few times and watch the videos.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Poverty is solved by giving the poor more income. Unemployment is solved by giving everyone a job. Inequality is solved by allocating income more equally.

None of those problems are solved by changing your consciousness, whatever that means.

We need solutions that deal with the real world, not magical new age mysticism.

People are motivated by wealth more than anything else. People will endorse these ideas because they think it will make them significantly wealthier. In politics, the only thing that matters is the personal finances of individuals. Like Carville said, it is the economy stupid.

[-] 1 points by RobertL (3) 2 years ago

What if a logo could be created that people could not ignore, that would supercharge the OWS movement, that small businesses across America will want to put on their store windows and websites, and people will want to wear on their shirts, bags, caps and on wristbands, that will make the economic fairness message go into the hearts of millions of Americans and awaken them to the injustices in America, that would create a People Power movement so incredibly powerful that even greedy politicians start paying attention and changing their talking points, actions and policies. We created such a logo and are taking it viral so that millions and millions of Americans are moved by this logo and message! www.HelpHealAmerica.org

What I am talking about when I say change in consciousness is awakening people, uplifting people so everyone starts thinking higher thoughts. So they are at the top of the mountain rather than at the bottom of the mountain. They have a far greater perspective. They start understanding they have choices and options, they are not victims. Occupy brought some change in thinking but I think it will not sell most Americans because it is too confrontational for them. There is limit to its growth. Help Heal America (HelpHealAmerica.org) can be the ticket for changing thinking of large masses of Americans if done right. We are working on making it right.

Not in a million years can you convince poor Americans that capitalism can be changed if you do it directly. They won't believe you. They are too proud of capitalism and free market, even though it is not free market. We all know that. They don't believe they have options.

I am saying what is the intermediary step that is necessary that will bring Americans to the point where they think that they can accept a change in their Capitalist system? HelpHealAmerica.org can do it. This is not new age mysticism. There can be a powerful movement whose purpose is to change thought.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

So poverty and unemployment is not enough to get those people to want to change capitalism, but your website that puts stickers on business windows will? Come on.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

People are motivated by wealth more than anything else.

I'm not motivated by wealth

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

If you had the choice between an economic system that paid you $30k versus one that pays you $115k, most would choose the latter.

Very few people choose poverty or a lower standard of living.

Most people want access to an education, a home, health care, nice clothes, transportation, vacations, leisure activities and to the latest technology.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

then they are motivated by desire for those things

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

The sentences "people are motivated by wealth" and "people are motivated by the desire for wealth" are identical.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

I don't need a big house

[-] 1 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 2 years ago

I have designed a similar proposal. Where I use an hour- credit ( hour- coin ) system. It allows for unlimited credit that never has to be repaid.

The incentive seems to be everyones concern, because the hour- coin is earned per hour equally for everyone. But as you mention, some of the more difficult jobs may require additional incentive. So to compensate I would offer double time or triple time for the tough jobs. ie. To encourage A students to continue in their studies an offer of double pay. And if that is not enough try triple pay. Or even higherfor the best of the best.

The best part of the hour-coin system is: With an unlimited budget there is opportunity for everyone.

I agree, once we provide everyone with a healthy opportunity most social problems will disappear.

The exciting part of both our proposals is the possibilities of improving the way we live. We are not " stuck" in a no solution situation. There are solutions / possibilities.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Yes, the system I propose here is identical to a labor credit/voucher system. If we allocated income equally, that would be identical to an hour-credit system.

The problem with describing income in time credits or vouchers is people don't know what a 1 hour credit or 1 hour labor voucher is worth. So I use current prices instead. 1 hour-credit, if income was allocated equally, would be equivalent to $65.

It is a lot easier to sell people on an economy that pays you $65 per hour than on an economy that pays you 1 hour credit per hour because now they know exactly how they will benefit from it.

In this plan I am essentially saying that the top 2.5% of workers will get paid 4 hour-credits per hour, the 12.3 million workers who do difficult jobs would get paid 2 hour-credits per hour and everyone else gets paid 1 hour-credit per hour.

But it is more persuasive and more meaningful to say workers will earn $460k, $230k and $115k respectively.

Are you involved with any group that is promoting this idea? Or are you on your own?

[-] 1 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 2 years ago

I like to use the hour- credit because it is universal worldwide and gives an intrinsic value. One hour equals one credit. Very easy to work with. Like the metric system with the power of ten.

[-] 1 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 2 years ago

I am on my own with this.

There are a few slight differences that I see. Your proposal responders the money that is already out there. Where as my proposal draws from an unlimited source. Where this is made possible is all goods will belong to the state until sold wherethan the credits paid would simply expire. There will be no profit on anything it will calculated at cost. Plus with my proposal tax collecting is eliminated, since the budget is now unlimited.

ie. One million people work one hour. Whatever they produce will be valued at one million hour- credits. And sold accordingly. Some jobs do not actually produce a sellable product, so their time will be added to the product sold. ie sweeping floors wll be added to the total cost of the product.

It's a very simple dollar for dollar system. but creates unlimited potential.

Again many aspects of our plans coincide.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

We are still the same.

My proposal would also have unlimited funds in the sense you are using the term. You are guaranteed a job. So we would pay out whatever money was necessary to pay all the incomes. If for example we paid everyone $65 and workers worked 1 million hours, we would pay out $65 million in income. If they decided to work 2 million the next week, we would pay out $130 million.

There is also no profit. If you start a company and that company generates $1 billion in surplus revenue, the founder doesn't pocket that money. That money is added to the national pool of income used to pay all workers.

And whether you have a tax or not is meaningless. I could pay out $65 million in incomes and charge a 10% tax. Or I can do away with the tax and just pay out only $58.5 million in income. Whether I collect the government revenues before incomes are paid out or after incomes are paid really makes no difference.

But I think charging a tax is better so workers know exactly how much they are paying for non-market goods and services. It is a layer of accountability and transparency.

Also, people who perform services to businesses like sweeping the floor will also be included in the cost of the product. That is actually how business works currently. If a company hires a floor sweeper, their salary will be part of that company's total expenses which they need to cover by including it in the price of the things they sell.

So it is identical.

Where we might differ is on company organization. I believe companies should mostly be individually run and managed. The economy would not be entirely centrally planned. And there should be competition between companies. There would not be 1 cell phone company, 1 computer company, etc.

[-] 1 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 2 years ago

Just to add, your plan depends on money recirculating, mine does not. With my proposal money will simply expire when spent.

[-] 1 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 2 years ago

In my proposal there is no tax period, neither before or after. A tax collecting system ends up with a limited government budget. I remove the budget completely and have unlimited funds for labor. Creating all the jobs and schooling necessary. Without any budget limits created by a tax system. Also the pool of money used to pay wages is not a pool at all, it is unlimited. Currently there is a pool of money at each business for wages , but when the product doesn't sell the income pool shrinks and jobs are cut to compensate. In your Proposal jobs would also be cut if sales are low. Even if peoPle want to work.

Yes currently the cost of the sweeper is calculated in final price. Just wanted to make that clear. For when jobs are being allocated and prioritized the final cost of the product will still depend on efficiency. Ie if everyone is in school and very little food is produced , the cost of food will be high. This creates incentive for a collective efficiency.

We spoke once before and you had an excellent list of personal incentives other than monetary. I would like to believe with an equal well balanced system individuals will pursue careers on these personal incentives rather than monetary incentive although there will always be financial reward. It is a civilized means of barter and trade.

And to address competition of business whether it be cellular phones or whatever. Everything will be calculated at cost and there will be differences of quality. I would forsee a innovation department where ideas will always be brought forth and expanded upon. Research would be an essential priority.

Again our plans see a future of great potential while removing the obstacles that have prevented the proper functioning of a fair and equal society. This is where our plans are strongly similar.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

There are some flaws in what you said.

The income you use to pay for the government is income that cannot be spent by consumers. Whether you call it a tax or not is semantics. That income MUST be accounted for. If you don't levy a tax after the income is paid out, then you must take the income before it is paid out by reducing the amount you pay to workers.

You do not have an unlimited budget. If you pay everyone, for example, $1 per hour worked and you dedicate 40% of your labor to the government, you CANNOT pay your workers $1 per hour. You must pay them $0.60 per hour because only 60% of your labor is being used to produce things consumers buy.

.

"when the product doesn't sell the income pool shrinks and jobs are cut to compensate. In your Proposal jobs would also be cut if sales are low. Even if peoPle want to work."

That means consumers do not value what those workers are producing. Keeping a worker at an unprofitable business is a waste of labor. That laborer is doing work that nobody is interested in buying.

So the proper thing to do would be to move those workers into jobs that are producing things people are willing to buy. Everyone would be guaranteed a job, so the worker would not suffer from changing market conditions like they do today.

If you do not force companies to remain financially viable, the economy would just get more and more inefficient and more and more unproductive over time. The workplace would devolve into a place where all friends work together doing the easiest tasks and goofing off all day. There would be no incentive to maintain high productivity.

I think it is plausible to have an effective economy where everyone gets paid the same. I think it might be plausible to have an effective economy without competition but I think it is very unlikely (plus I don't see any benefit to not having competition). However, there is absolutely no way you can have an effective, efficient, productive economy if you don't require companies to remain financially viable.

[-] 1 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 2 years ago

To the first part- that was why I mentioned the sweeper is included in the final price. In your example of 0.40 0.60, the government expense will be totaled in the final cost of production. And yes the hour- coin credit system has no limit for labor expense. Print as much as they can earn.

Yes , I believe in efficiency. We will find ways necessary to maintain efficiency.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

So then what you are advocating is essentially a sales tax. When you buy something, you would have to pay the price of the product plus that company's share of government expenses.

I would say the only way to be efficient is to make sure companies produce goods and services for a price consumers are willing to pay.

[-] 1 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 2 years ago

Let's start with this:

The hour-coin is an unlimited credit for all labor and education. The GDP is calculated by the amount of hour- coins credited. With every purchase from the GDP the credits become nullified. The credit : GDP ratio depends entirely on efficiency. And again the labor force is completely unrestricted by a budget tax system. We can work until our hearts are content. The money will never run out for our paychecks.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

That is how what I propose would work. Everyone would be guaranteed a job at whatever the pay plan is. We would always pay out in income whatever is required to employ everyone. There is no limit in our ability to pay out incomes.

The difference with yours is that although you are guaranteed a job, you don't have the ability to just work wherever you want. You can only work for a place that can afford you. This ensures that the economy remains efficient.

This efficiency has an enormous impact. For example, we could have everyone at car manufacturer A just work at car manufacturer B. This would enable all those employees to work half as hard, so they would be motivated to do that. But cars would now be twice as expensive and your car production would be cut in half. If we were this inefficient at every company, our GDP would be cut in half.

If you don't pay attention to efficiency by requiring companies to be financially viable, living standards would plummet.

You also want to be efficient with how much income is spent on government. For every $1 you spend on government, that is $1 less you can spend on consumption. So you should be very transparent about exactly how much income is being spent on government. The best way to do that is to charge a tax so everyone knows exactly how much their consumption is being reduced.

[-] 1 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 2 years ago

I am glad we had this conversation. Thank you

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Same here, thanks.

[-] 1 points by 2005wrx (1) from Bellingham, WA 2 years ago

Who gets paid to invent? Who gets paid to come up with the idea out of left field? America has always been about "The Land of Opportunity", with this proposal that opportunity has a ceiling. There are people who don't WANT to work. What do we do about them? There are people who cannot work, what do we do about them? The problem with this system is that it won't motivate the masses. You cannot have supply and demand economics with this and expect it do work. Who sets pricing? What about the costs of raw materials? How much of the workforce will WORK?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Who gets paid to invent?"

Entrepreneurs. The same people who get paid to invent in today's system. Everything would essentially work the way it does today. The only thing that will change is how much income you are paid.

If you have an idea for a product, you will go to a bank for funding, just like you do today. If you can find a bank who thinks the idea is viable, they will invest in it, just like in today's system. You would then get paid according to the democratic plan. And if your company does well, you will be able to earn the maximum under the democratic plan.

.

"America has always been about "The Land of Opportunity""

Which is very similar to the concept of AmWay. They sell you a dream of becoming rich. But what you find out is that just like AmWay, the only ones getting rich are the few at the top and they are getting rich off of the broke masses below them.

Only 3% of workers in the US earn an above average income. That 3% consume most of the income that the bottom 97% create.

.

"with this proposal that opportunity has a ceiling"

There is also a ceiling to what you can earn today. For most people, that ceiling is not enough to live off of. 50% of Americans are in or close to poverty. They are not broke by choice. This plan will make everyone wealthy and will enable the vast majority to earn far more than they ever would under today's system.

.

"There are people who don't WANT to work. What do we do about them?"

We give them an opportunity to work a job. If they don't want to work, that is their decision to make.

.

"There are people who cannot work, what do we do about them?"

Of course, we will still have tax funded programs to help the disabled.

.

"The problem with this system is that it won't motivate the masses"

Huh? You think people lose the motivation to work when you pay them more? That makes no sense.

People will be motivated because they enjoy what they do, they take pride in their work, they don't want to get fired, they want to move on to a better position and because they want to increase their pay.

.

"You cannot have supply and demand economics with this and expect it do work."

Yes you can. Consumers will drive demand based on how they spend money. Companies will produce what consumers buy and stop producing what they do not buy.

.

"Who sets pricing? What about the costs of raw materials?"

Companies set their own pricing just like they do today. Your pricing is based on your expenses. If your expenses increase, your prices increase. If your expenses go down, your pricing goes down. That is the way it works for raw material companies and every other company.

.

"How much of the workforce will WORK?"

I would say it is close to 100%. If you can't get friends or family to support you, you will die of starvation from not working. Few people want to die or mooch off of someone else.

[-] 1 points by shield (222) 2 years ago

I'm trying to pick out the sentence in your post which will save me the most work, and I think I've found it.

"The market should be used to allocate goods and services. But it shouldn't be used to allocate income. The market shouldn't be used to allocate people's standard of living. It is inhumane to treat people like commodities, like heads of cattle."

"Income" is what we receive in exchange for the goods or services others choose to buy from us. We use this income to purchase goods and services from others. This is the general principle of a money economy, as opposed to a barter economy, where goods and services are traded directly. Since this is a money economy and not a barter economy, the market cannot allocate goods and services while simultaneously not allocating income. The purpose of income is to represent goods and services. That is why it is accepted in exchange for those goods and services.

Looking at things from a "let's put more money in people's hands so everyone has more" standpoint, the Fed could simply print more money and have USPS give it away in the mail. That would certainly put potentially millions and billions in everyone's hands. But would there have been goods produced or services rendered which that money represents? The answer is no.

Either the value of those goods and services would increase (in terms of their cost) or producers would find themselves out of stock. But they could just buy more stuff to make their products out of right? Yes, for a time. But then their suppliers would be out of stock. But those suppliers could just buy more raw materials from the people who extract/mine/produce/refine/etc them right? Yes, but only at the rate at which those people can work. The situation in which the price of goods does not change and everyone starts buying more since they can afford it creates a huge demand for the work of those who actually supply what is consumed. As many people on this forum are fond of pointing out, you can't eat money. Since everyone will already have cash in hand, who will do the work? And in exchange for what?

Solutions like this are trying to tackle a real problem. But they go about doing so in an irrational way. I think the most important flaw in the general understanding of a money economy is this idea that consumption drives an economy. It does not. Production drives an economy. Trade of goods and services is the action which takes place in any economy. Someone who consumes goods without producing anything drains an economy. Someone who produces only as much as they consume has no effect on an economy. It is only someone who creates more than what they consume who can stimulate and grow an economy.

Now, look at what the federal reserve does. It prints money (which has no inherent value), loans it to the banks at interest (to be repaid how? It must be in goods or services, or FRNs paid to that bank by others as debt repayment [but where did those others get the FRNs? Same source!]), who then loans it to us at higher interest (again, to be repaid how? It must be by goods or services or FRNs). The last part is one that confuses some people. Someone who takes out a loan from a bank (and repays it) pays it back in the same form in which it came -- US Federal Reserve Notes or their equivalent. That's neither a good nor a service. But those FRNs were obtained by the debtor in exchange for whatever good or service he provided. Prior to that exchange, they were held by someone who had obtained them in the same way, all the way back down the chain to their employers and the loans that they would have taken out to start their businesses.

So to put it simply, the Federal Reserve (or any National Agency which would be doing the same thing) only consumes. It does not produce anything. It is the drain on the economy. And yet that is how currency is produced and introduced into the marketplace in all modern economic systems!! The people further down the line are like batteries powering an electric circuit with its inherent losses and its load. The losses and load in this case represent FRNs and the system of unbacked currency.

Now, in an "equal distribution" case, this would mean that everyone would have to be doing enough work to keep themselves alive and keep alive the issuers of the currency used to transact. The reality is much worse. Some find ways to save themselves from having to do extra (inherently unnecessary) work by switching that extra burden onto those further down the "credit chain". Eventually someone (many people) gets saddled with so much debt that they can't do enough work to keep themselves alive and pay it off. I'm not referring to home loan debt or auto financing debt or any other voluntary debt, but to the "hidden debt" that's built right into the currency and its propensity to "pile up" in certain economic areas.

Long story short -- changing how Federal Reserve Notes are "allocated" is not going to change what they are, which is a drain on the efforts of every human being who comes into contact with them. The solution to that problem is to stop using them and stop using monetary systems where the currency is not backed by goods for which it can be exchanged.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Since this is a money economy and not a barter economy, the market cannot allocate goods and services while simultaneously not allocating income."

That is not true.

Companies must produce what consumers buy. If consumers stop buying what a company is selling, they go out of business. That process is not changed at all by changing the income you are paid! Whether you have $33k to spend as a consumer or $115k to spend as a consumer, the market still works the same way.

Absolutely nothing has changed in the allocation of goods and services.

.

"the Fed could simply print more money and have USPS give it away in the mail. That would certainly put potentially millions and billions in everyone's hands"

That is not what I advocate!

What I advocate is redistributing EXISTING income. If you just printed more money, that would just cause inflation. This plan calls for increasing the income of the bottom 97% of workers by decreasing the income of the top 3% of workers.

.

"The solution to that problem is to stop using them and stop using monetary systems where the currency is not backed by goods for which it can be exchanged."

Your assessment of the FED is wrong. The $15 trillion in money that circulates yearly in our economy is backed by $15 trillion in goods and services.

[-] 1 points by shield (222) 2 years ago

"Your assessment of the FED is wrong. The $15 trillion in money that circulates yearly in our economy is backed by $15 trillion in goods and services."

However much money circulates in the economy is certainly representative of the goods that money is exchanged for, that is true. But those goods/services are not owned by the Fed. Those goods and services are owned by the people who produced them. Before the money issued by the Fed is spent on goods/services, it is not backed. And when it is spent on services, that does not provide backing for it since services are consumed. Furthermore, the concept of "backing" is as follows: I have X amount of goods so I issue X amount of notes which can be exchanged for those goods. It is the ability to exchange the notes for the goods which gives them value or "backs" them. The Fed does not back the currency it issues with goods it owns. It lends its currency at interest in an attempt to obtain the existing goods and services as interest payments. Since all the federal reserve notes eventually must be returned and then some (interest), that interest must be paid in actual goods and services (since all the notes have been returned).

My point about the market necessarily allocating goods/services and income is that people will only do work (for others) in exchange for something. That something is their income, whatever form it takes. If the market dictates that a certain amount of goods need to be produced in order to meet the demand, as many people as is needed to produce that many goods will be hired and at whatever rate makes sense to those doing the hiring and those seeking those positions. In this way the market allocates income in the same manner in which it allocates goods/services.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"But those goods/services are not owned by the Fed."

You don't need to own any goods and services in order to manage the money supply.

.

"And when it is spent on services, that does not provide backing for it since services are consumed."

That makes no sense. Both goods and services are consumed.

.

"It lends its currency at interest in an attempt to obtain the existing goods and services as interest payments"

The purpose of the FED is not to make interest income. The purpose is to maintain price stability. Its purpose is to make sure the amount of money in circulation is equal to the amount of goods and services being sold.

If there is too much money in circulation, that cause inflation. If there is too little, that causes deflation. The FED's goal is to avoid inflation and deflation.

.

"Since all the federal reserve notes eventually must be returned and then some (interest), that interest must be paid in actual goods and services (since all the notes have been returned)."

All the money in circulation does not have to be returned to the Fed. If you are getting your economics education from online videos, understand there is a chance the information may not be accurate.

.

"In this way the market allocates income in the same manner in which it allocates goods/services."

But there is no economic law that says you must allocate income through the market. You can allocate goods and services through the market and allocate income democratically.

What part of the market allocation process do you think will no longer work if we allocate income democratically? The market doesn't stop working because you lowered the incomes of the people at the top so you can raise the incomes of the people at the bottom.

[-] 1 points by shield (222) 2 years ago

"You don't need to own any goods and services in order to manage the money supply."

My issue with this comment is due to the use of the word "money". Money is anything which represents wealth that exists. It is true that you do not need to own goods in order to manage the currency supply, but currency and money are different concepts. Currency means "The fact or quality of being generally accepted or in use." The fact that something is generally accepted or in use does not inherently make that thing representative of wealth which exists and is owned by those who initially produced the currency. If there were two people on the planet and one of them was a farmer and the other was someone who printed currency, if the printer exchanged his currency for the farmer's farm, the farmer would have gained nothing except paper (or whatever medium the currency was created from). Let's say that the currency producer then devours all of the resources of the farm and chooses not to work it to produce more goods. The farmer, who traded his farm for currency can not exchange his currency for goods owned by the currency producer, since the currency producer did not own any in the first place. He can now not even exchange that currency for his farm since it has been consumed. This is an oversimplified example but it does illuminate the reality of currency as opposed to money the situation that exists. Of course, it would be foolish of the farmer to accept the currency producer's currency in exchange for his farm since he can see that the currency producer does not own any actual wealth -- only currency. The problem with the people of today is that they do not see that the federal reserve does not own or produce any goods -- only currency!

"That makes no sense. Both goods and services are consumed."

Fair enough, I was rather unclear in my meaning. Services are immediately "consumed" after they are rendered. Goods have the potential to be turned into greater value. If I wash your car (a service), I have saved you time that you can use for something else. You may use it for something else or not. If you do not use that time to produce more wealth, then what you have paid for (your time) has been consumed and no longer exists. If, instead, you purchase food, eat the food, then use the energy from the food to produce something of greater value than that food, the net result is not "consumption" but production. Production is the source of wealth (and a potential stimulus to an economy), not consumption. Someone who consumes and never produces (or produces less or equal to what they consume) never generates wealth.

your comments on the Fed are not even a response to what I said. Regardless of what the "purpose" of the Fed is, you can only judge it by what it does, which is exactly what I have said it does. The effects of what it does are as I described. Assuming that its purpose is to "maintain price stability", it is failing miserably. Why? Because of what it does.

"If there is too much money in circulation, that cause inflation."

This is either outright incorrect or simply ambiguous. Regarding the issue of ambiguity, what does "too much money in circulation" mean? It is not "too much money in circulation" which causes inflation, but the existence of currency which does not represent goods which actually exist that causes inflation. Let's say that there are 100 "goods" in existence, and money already in circulation which represents goods that have been previously produced and traded in exchange for that money. In this situation, there could be up to 100 "moneys" in circulation, since there are only 100 "goods" which that money represents (assuming a 1:1 correlation). If I come into the economy and start printing more "moneys" which are not backed by goods which I own and introducing them into the economy, people will start to charge more for their products (mostly since they can charge me whatever they want, since I have an "unlimited" supply of "moneys"). This is, of course, assuming they believe that I have backed my currency with goods. If they know that I have no goods, why would the accept my currency? It would not be worth anything. Anyway, if I can successfully introduce my currency into the marketplace, then there will be more currency in circulation than goods which it represents. Those who realize this (who have not started to do so already) will have to charge more for their products in order to continue to afford the goods of those who have already realized and understood the situation (since those others will already have raised their prices). This is inflation.

"All the money in circulation does not have to be returned to the Fed."

It does. How can you say that it doesn't? It is a loan. It may not have to be return all at once, but it does have to be returned. That is one of the principles which distinguishes a loan from a gift. Furthermore, it is loaned at interest. That means that not only must all that-which-was-loaned be returned, but additional payments must also be made.

"But there is no economic law that says you must allocate income through the market." The law against theft is the law which says that you must allocate income through the market. Any other form of allocation is necessarily theft. Income is goods and services (except when it takes the form of currency as distinguished from money). Income (in the form of money) is/represents goods/services. They are (believed to be, by both parties involved in a trade) the same and that is why one can be traded for the other. To suggest that I can trade you a product produced in one of my factories in exchange for your money, and then pay my workers out of some other pool than that created by the money I charge for my products is preposterous. From what source will that money come? I can only pay the workers of my factory what their work is worth to me, which is determined by what I can sell the products produced thereby for (minus other expenses of production). The idea of "democratic distribution of income" is (in every implementation I have heard) theft!

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Currency means 'The fact or quality of being generally accepted or in use.'"

That is not correct. Money is what we use to buy goods and services. Currency is the money that is in the form of bills and coins.

.

"The problem with the people of today is that they do not see that the federal reserve does not own or produce any goods -- only currency!"

The federal reserve makes money. The Treasury makes the currency (bills and coins) and sells it to the fed at face value.

The problem with your analogy is that the fed is not just printing money to buy up all our productive capacity and then stopping its production. It is only increasing the money supply to match the increase in production. If our economy grows by 5%, the money supply must grow by 5% in order to maintain stable prices. Otherwise, you will have deflation.

.

"Services are immediately "consumed" after they are rendered. Goods have the potential to be turned into greater value."

That is also not correct. You are confusing goods with investment. We produce both investment goods and services and consumption goods and services.

We don't produce tractors to consume tractors. We produce tractors because we need them to produce the food that we want to consume. Tractors would be an investment, food would be consumption.

.

"Someone who consumes and never produces (or produces less or equal to what they consume) never generates wealth."

If you work, you are contributing to our overall production. Some people work on producing investment goods and services (like tractors) and some people work directly on producing consumption items (like in a fast food restaurant).

.

"Assuming that its purpose is to "maintain price stability", it is failing miserably. Why? Because of what it does."

What it does is manage the money supply to maintain price stability. And it has been hugely successful at it. Since the Fed was created, our country has averaged 3.2% inflation per year which is what its goal is and is significantly less than before the fed. The fed has also almost entirely eliminated inflation volatility which plagued the economy before the fed which you can easily see in this graph:

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_5aAsxFJOeMw/Sp0vw2mxcuI/AAAAAAAACp0/moBaYg8GpUY/s1600-h/trailing-year-us-inflation-rate-jan-1872-jun-2009.PNG

.

"if I can successfully introduce my currency into the marketplace, then there will be more currency in circulation than goods which it represents."

Correct, and that would cause inflation. The Fed only increases the money supply to match the growth of the economy.

.

"Any other form of allocation is necessarily theft...The idea of "democratic distribution of income" is (in every implementation I have heard) theft!"

What specifically do you think is being stolen?

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 2 years ago

dreams are dreams
wishes are wishes
I don't believe in santa claus or the tooth fairy either
I do believe that the ONLY way is to start in the beginning
GET THE MONEY OUT OF POLITICS

how?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

It is a fairy tale to think you can get money out of politics. The only way to get money out of politics is to ban free speech. You would have to ban all the privately owned radio stations, newspapers, tv programs, blogs, ad infinitum, which are all funded with private money, from talking about politics.

The problem is not free speech. The problem is that the few wealthy have far more money than everyone else, so they get to dominate the speech which allows them to set the agenda, manufacture what the "political center" is, determine what politicians you can choose from, and determine what laws those politicians will put in place. The only solution to that is a truly democratic society - a society where everyone has equal economic power as described in this post.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Before we hail Athenian democracy, realize, they had slavery, and women were treated like chattel (although this was pervasive in antiquity, let's at least understand what Athenian democracy in fact was before we use it as our shining example of democracy). Also, they had the good fortune of discovering huge ores of silver (which they used slave labor to mine), and with all that money pouring into such a small city-state, I think virtually any system would have been successful. So the ancient Greeks, while they did invent the concept of democracy, probably isn't the best example of how it could work (in the context of our modern society). Better examples I think include the Swiss cantons, even the brief period of anarchism in Spain (during its civil war period) ... but these are small examples (these ideas have never been applied in a nation as large as the United States). I tend to think this form of democracy works better on a smaller scale.

For instance, there's really nothing preventing states from adopting direct (or participatory) democracy (provided it adheres to our Constitution and Bill of Rights).

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I advocate democracy. I do not advocate Athens's version of democracy or slavery. Voting, direct or otherwise, is not democracy. Democracy means people power. It is a society where everyone has equal power. And since all power in society is economic, unless we have equal economic power, we do not have democracy.

You do not have a democratic society if income is concentrated in the hands of a few wealthy people but you are able to directly vote on who can get married or whether we go to war. Voting on a referendum does not give some guy who makes $30k the same amount of power in society as a billionaire.

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

Rather than a minimum wage incomes should be pegged to the cost of living and the income should be based on the living wage scale. Among other things this would vitiate the need to revisit a minimum wage law every time it was undercut by inflation. I'd also suggest that extremely unpleasant jobs, jobs that few people would voluntarily choose (e.g. garbage collection) should recieve special compensation, It is also the case that there are nearly 17 million empty homes in the nation and nearly 3 million homeless, I'd say put the homeless in empty houses now without regard to compensation or mortgages, With regard to the length of the work week, just as the rate of pay should be pegged to the cost of living, the length of the work week should be pegged to the level of unemployment and should be reduced as unemployment increases to open up labor markets,

In terms of the hours of work, it seems to me that it depends on the kind of work it is, When asked about retiring Duke Ellington responded "retire to what?" He was already doing exactly what he wanted to be doing and there were not enough hours in the day for him to do it,

The British utopian socialist William Morris argued that all work should be artful in the sense that it should be physically, intellectually and spiritually rewarding like the "work" of any artist, That's a great ideal and I'm all for it, though I expect that is unlikely to happen until after social relations have been fundamentally changed and democracy established.

Ultimately though I don't see any of that having much bearing on my understanding of what democracy per se is all about, If there is any one thing that I think would increase democracy in our culture it would be fundamental labor law reform which would give working people considerably more freedom of action to associate and engage in "concerted action for mutual benefit" (the legal definition of a union) without recrimination or recourse to disciplinary action on the part of the employer, But I don't see that happening either without a struggle. That is, the way to establish such rights is to act as though they already exist,

To me the most logical next step for the occupy movement is the re-establishment of the sit down movement of the 1930s, the occupation of work places, though while that is a logical next step it is also a very giant step and I'm not about to hold my breath until it happens,

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago
  1. The minimum wage is based on total GDP. So it doesn't need to be adjusted for inflation or what a living wage is.

  2. I don't say everyone should get paid the same. People who do difficult jobs get paid twice as much.

  3. Giving the homeless a free home is not fair to the people who have to pay for their home. A better plan is to just give them a job and a 0% mortgage as proposed.

  4. People should be free to work as many hours as they want. We don't need to shorten the week to achieve full employment. We will never run out of work to do. All we need to do is invest whatever is necessary to employ everyone.

  5. We have the ability to automate most menial jobs. That would take priority in a democratic society whose goal is freedom as explained in the proposal. The only work people should do is the kind of fun activities people would do even if they weren't getting paid. You can read more about that idea here: http://www.demandthegoodlife.com/plan-automation.asp

  6. All of that is at the heart of democracy. Democracy is a society where the power to act rests with everyone equally. The power is the freedom to do whatever you want with your life. So the goal of a democratic society is to maximize that power, maximize your freedom to spend your life doing whatever you want. Maximizing your freedom requires us to maximize our automation. You can read more about that here: http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-663128

  7. Occupy, unfortunately, is a protest movement, not a revolutionary movement. So it is protesting what is wrong. But it is not demanding solutions.

The problem is inequality of wealth and income. The only way to fix that is to adopt an economic system that has equality, not inequality. That system is democracy. And the only way to change the economic system is with a general strike.

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

The minimum wage is a static figure. It does not change automatically because of inflation, so no matter what it is, it has to be constantly revisited to account for inflation, On the other hand a living wage law would always account for inflation and this would vitiate the need for it to be regularly revisited or the visisitudes of an every changing Congress.

Leaving homeless people homeless when there are 4 times as many empty homes as there are homeless people strikes me as considerably more unjust than having people continue to pay mortgages though even in that case for starters at least home loans could be adjusted down to a 0% interest rate,

Your notions, interesting as they may be, seem disconnected from any actual or potential living and breathing social movement, especially the labor movement. Getting rid of menial jobs in the abstract in the context of our existing class society essentially means getting rid of work in a period of siignificant unemployment.

One of the most radical things about OWS is that it makes no demands, much to the frustration of many of its erstwhile supporters and opponents alike. It makes no demands for many reasons among the most radical of those reasons are that it has no expectations of the existing ruling elite and to make demands of them would tend to legitimate them, On the home page of this web site it says that we don't need Wall Street or politicians to build a better world, If that is the case then there is no point in making any demands of them. Our project needs to be organize, organize, organize until there is at least a local general assembly and perhaps an encampment in at least a majority of the county seats of the nation. At that point we can begin to work on your program or whatever else we decide to do without reference to the bourgeois state.

I'm extremely skeptical of any "only" way to do anything especially in the absence of any apparent connection to any real movement. Certainly the call for a May 1 general strike looks promising but even its advocates acknowledge that they don't expect it to be a real general strike and would consider it a success if 10 million people participate nation wide, which is really quite far from a genuine general strike.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

What is proposed here is taking total GDP and allocating it to all workers according to a plan that the workers vote to approve and where differences in income are limited by law to only what is necessary to get people to do difficult work or give their max effort.

So incomes will always rise as GDP rises. If there is inflation, that inflation is already built into GDP.

Do you think it is fair for only some people to get a free home and others to have to pay for their home? I don't and everyone else who is currently paying a mortgage would agree.

I'm not saying we should leave them homeless. They should be given a job and a 0% mortgage if they want to own a home.

Automating jobs in a capitalist economy is devastating to the workers automated out of a job. However, I advocate replacing capitalism with democracy. In a democratic economy, you are guaranteed a job. So automation does not increase unemployment. We would always invest whatever amount is needed to fully employ everyone who wants a job.

In a democratic system, everyone gets to benefit from increased automation, including the workers who are automated out of a job.

I agree with you that we need to organize. But probably where we disagree is what people will organize around. I do not think you are going to get many people to organize if you have no specific goal that your organizing is trying to achieve.

However, if you tried to organize workers by saying we want to increase your minimum income to $115k, reduce your work week to 20 hours, offer you a 100% mortgage with no down payment at 0% interest and pay you to go to school if you want to pursue a different career, workers would sign up for that in droves.

I am certainly open to any and all ways of improving society. However, my personal belief is that the only way to create the kinds of changes proposed in this post is through a general strike.

I do not think the strike called for on May 1 will be effective for the reasons I already mentioned. They have nothing to strike for. It is simply a protest. Strikes are only effective when workers demand specific changes or improvements to the working condition. Going on strike for one day to just show people you are upset is completely pointless and will accomplish nothing.

The easiest way to defeat an enemy is through divide and conquer. So long as occupy remains as a group without a unified goal, they will not accomplish anything. The opposition will continue to win.

If occupy is unified under the belief that there is too much income inequality, they should unify under the idea that we want to implement an economic system where that inequality does not exist.

Capitalism will never limit income inequality. You will always have a 1% and a 99%. The only way to get rid of that is to allocate income democratically in a way that precisely limits the inequality to whatever is deemed acceptable.

[-] 1 points by BearDickinson (125) from Ewing, VA 2 years ago

better to replace this idiocy with something that i can abide with........

[-] 1 points by elf3 (2240) 2 years ago

A corporate memo is issued by companies and banks - then the government enforces it against the people by making laws and punishment - scary!!!!! Is there a name for this type of government?

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

Sadly there is far too much of this kind of willful ignorance and silliness for this movement to ever accomplish anything worthwhile.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I agree. People like you, who cling to failing systems out of ignorance, is what prevents change.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

Can you explain then, to help me with my "ignorance", what the economic effect of making $115k the minimum wage will be? I await your intelligent reply with great anticipation.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

It would make everyone wealthy and solve nearly every social problem we have, all the problems listed in the second paragraph of part 1 of the proposal: housing, education, health care, poverty, financial struggle, constant worrying about how to pay the bills, low standard of living, gangs, most crimes, unemployment, working too many hours, working at a job you hate, working too many hours at a job you hate, misery, hopelessness, boredom, recessions, depressions, foreclosures.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

If everyone made 115k a year and gas costs 15 a gallon, milk 12 a gallon, a car 120k, and an average house 1.5 million has anything been gained?

Please explain how prices would remain where they are while everyone who produces something has their labor costs skyrocket...

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

All we are doing is redistributing existing income. Redistributing existing income does not cause inflation. The increase in the minimum worker pay to $115k is fully offset by the decrease in the top earning worker pay to $460k.

We are not increasing the total income that is getting paid out. So on average, costs will remain the same. And since costs will remain the same, prices will also remain the same.

Some worker incomes will go up. They will be offset by other worker incomes going down. Some goods and services might go up in price. They will be offset be others going down in price. But since total expenses remain the same, prices on average remain the same.

Since income allocation in this country is so unequal, out of every 100 workers, 97 will get a pay raise and 50 will get a 450% pay raise which will be fully offset by the 3 who will get a pay decrease.

In 2010, we paid out a total of $14.5 trillion in income. In the plan proposed here, we will also pay out a total of $14.5 trillion in income.

To learn how the incomes proposed here of $115k - $460k are calculated, read this comment:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662000

[-] -1 points by Deeptx (42) 2 years ago

No .... all you are doing is pitching a communistic state

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Communism is a hypothetical stage society will reach once it develops the technology to eliminate scarcity. Once you eliminate scarcity, you don't need money or property or government. Technology enables you to reach such an abundance that you no longer need goods and services to be rationed with money, people can take all they want. And automation is so advanced, all the jobs nobody wants to do are done by machines, so you don't need to pay people to work.

No society has ever achieved communism. We do not have the technology to achieve it. I advocate the use of money, prices, markets for goods and services and working for an income. So I do not advocate communism.

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

I don't know where you get this stuff. Certainly not from Marx who argued that an inch or real movement was worth all the theory in the world.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Communism is a stateless, classless, moneyless, propertyless society that comes after capitalism and is made possible by advanced technology. That is how Marx defined it.

I don't know what you mean by movement. I'm just defining a term for someone who incorrectly thinks what I advocate here is communism.

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

Marx wrote several dozen volumes on the nature of 19th century capitalism and only a couple of paragraphs about what a post capitalist society would look like and then only under pressure to do so.

OWS is certainly the beginning of a movement though hardly a mass movement, at least not yet. It it is as successful as organizers hope it to be, while not a real general strike the proposed May 1 "General Strike" would also qualify as the beginning of a movement in Marx's conception I think.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

If you want to change society, you have to get mainstream America on board. And mainstream America does not care about political ideology or libertarianism or capitalism or socialism or Marx or inequality or occupy protests or democracy. They care about their own bottom line.

So if you ask the average American to protest inequality, you are going to get little support. But if you ask them to support changes that will increase their income to at least $115k, eliminate the interest on their mortgage and reduce their work week to 20 hours, mainstream America will get on board.

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

Presumably the American working class cares, or can be made to care, about its own inequality. What I find most troubling about YOUR program is that you have absolutely no strategy about how to get a tiny group like OWS to endorse it, much less "mainstream America."

What is more important than getting people to endorse a program out of selfish reasons is to get them to act out of solidariy. This is difficult but not impssible, It is the basis on which more than 13 million American workers belong to labor unions. And while church attendence is down, what better expression of solidarity is there than "Love one another.?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

A union is a means to an end, not an end in itself. That was the point that I was making. In order for a union to work, there must be solidarity. But there will only be solidarity if the workers are going to get an increase in income and benefits from it.

What will keep workers involved in the strike for the long haul is not a sense of solidarity. It will be the fact that they will double or quadruple their pay.

There is no plan for tomorrow. There is almost nothing I can do by myself. However, I am willing to work with anyone who wants to move the ball forward.

A plan that I have been mulling over would be to create a website that explains the idea with endorsements from credible people and asks the visitor to join the virtual labor union. Then we tell those visitors to get their co-workers, family, friends, etc. to join by just sending them to the website.

It can be as simple as that. A website and word of mouth.

I have no experience in trade unions. But I do have experience in building large internet companies from scratch.

I do not think Taft would apply since we wouldn't be a real union that negotiates pay with the existing owners. We would be a political movement. The labor unions that exist would not be able to get involved.

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

I don't see how you can build what amounts to an essentially new labor movement by ignoring the remanants of the labor movement that already exists. After all, embattled as it is, it involved more than 13 million workers. Again, weak as it is, the sad fact remains there is no other institution in American society that is nearly as large.

Even putting aside Taft-Hartley, the fact is there are criminal syndicalist laws that have been on the books since the days of the IWW that specifically prohibit a general strike and essentially define it as treason.

My suggestion would be for you to get active in the labor committee or working group of your closest general assembly and see how your ideas resonate there. Among other things I think that would be the best place for you to get direct feed back.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Are you saying a better strategy to change society is to get workers to care about solidarity instead of their own best interests?

I don't think that will work.

If unions offered worker solidarity but lower pay, few would join them. Most people join unions because it gets them better pay. What workers care about is better pay and benefits.

I did not go into how to accomplish a general strike in this post. But I do have a potential strategy. You need branding and advertising.

By branding I mean you need credible public figures and institutions to endorse it. And by advertising, I mean you need specific systems that people can follow to sell the idea to others in a way that is effective, you need a public relations strategy with well crafted talking points to get this idea on the public agenda, you need small and large scale advertising, and you need to raise money to pay for this massive effort.

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

Solidarity is the ONLY thing that will work and it is the only thing that has worked. The labor movement in the United States today is extremely weak, probably as weak as it has ever been since the dawn of the Second Industrial Revolution, but it wouldn't exist at all without a spirit of solidarity. That's what the word UNION means after all. Indeed there is a world of difference between the building trades where the unions tend to be self serving job trusts and the whole rest of the labor movement (not just industrial unions) where a genuine spirit of solidarity prevails.

Tell me more about branding and advertising. What do you plan to do tomorrow, next week and next month to move your plan forward? And BTW, why do people strike, and most importantly why do they stay on strike except out of a sense of solidarity? The average working family lives week to week. Most workers can afford to stay out on strike a week, maybe two, but after that the selfish pressure is to go back to work. What keeps them out is a sense of solidarity.

Do you have any experience as a trade union activist? What would you see as the relationship between a general strike call and existing unions and collective bargaining agreements? Who do you see as making such a call? What individuals, groups of individuals or institutions? How would you deal with Taft Hartley reservations, which I suspect might be applied even if the labor leadership specifically distanced themselves from a general strike call. After all elected union officials have been held responsible for wild cat strikes even when they actively and obviously opposed them. This could prove disaterous to existing unions and bankrupt them, which would be ultimately disaterous if such a strike call were to fail (which is very likely the first time it is called). That really would be disaterous because at the back end of such a strike call if it failed would be a totally ruined labor movement, much much worse off than today's very weak labor movement, which not only would be of no service to working people but which would clearly not endear YOUR movement and its leaders to working people, especially to class conscious working people.

[-] 1 points by zoom6000 (430) from St Petersburg, FL 2 years ago

Oil is our natural resouce why the oil companies are in controll of it? and why we have to pay subsidiary to oil companies??? and why there is Hedge fund casino to gamble on the prices??

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Oil is not our only natural resource. Everything we produce is made with natural resources. The better question is how does someone get exclusive control over a part of the planet, use the force of government to prevent anyone else from having access to those resources and get rich off that ownership while the rest of the population struggles financially?

[-] 1 points by engineer4 (272) 2 years ago

If the minimum wage is raised to your proposed rate, the cost of everything would increase and nothing would change. All other wages would move by the same amounts, otherwise your talking about wage equality which will never, ever happen. The poverty line would just re-adjust. If their is no interest charged, how would the bank pay your proposed wage rate to their workers? Why would anyone save money if no interest is earned. Your proposal would eliminate capital, and how woud any business operate without working capital? Your saying public funds? From where ? How would a college operate and pay their operating costs and teacher salaries if they are paying the student to also be there. Where does that money coming from? The housing proposal was tried, gave us the house bubble and crash. A down payment puts the buyer into a more serious position of ownership so would limit the walk-away or stoppage of payments. He now has something to loose. And your proposing consensus on how much someone can make as a wage and how hard he should work? Good luck on that one.
You act like all workers are unhappy, working in some dark factory back in the 1800s. Right off the old communist posters.
Is there hour coins in this one too? Sorry, this post is dead on arrival.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You have to read the proposal in order to understand what I am proposing. The answers to your questions are in there.

All we are doing is redistributing existing income. Redistributing existing income does not cause inflation. The increase in the minimum worker worker pay to $115k is fully offset by the decrease in the top earning worker pay to $460k.

Interest is payment for renting someone's savings. Yes, you will need to pay some kind of fee for a bank to process a loan. But that is a one-time, small fee. The interest on a $400k mortgage with a 4.5% rate is $400k. We don't need to pay a bank $400k in order to process a mortgage.

Few would invest that is why we need to fund businesses with public funds which would be whatever the natural savings rate is. Not everyone spends 100% of their income as they get it. The money not being spent is available for lending.

You would have to raise enough money to pay both student income and the school expense. That can be done with a tax less than 6%.

This housing proposal wasn't tried! Housing crashed because variable interest rates made the monthly payment double or triple which made it unaffordable. This proposal would have a permanent 0%. And people got loans who couldn't afford them. Your income would be a digital record which prevents you from lying about it and since you are guaranteed a $115k job, you will never lose your income and not be able to pay your mortgage. Plus a lot of home buyers were speculating on homes, hoping to get rich, not buying them to live in. There would no longer be speculating on homes in a democratic economy since all income comes from the national compensation plan.

I never mentioned the factory lighting conditions. What I did say is 97% are getting a below averaging income, 50% are making $110k less than average and 50% of all Americans are in or near poverty. None of those people are happy about that. Our economy doesn't work and needs to be fixed.

You sound like an unhappy capitalist right out of a Dickens novel. Sorry, your response is dead on arrival.

[-] 1 points by craigdangit (326) 2 years ago

If all people were paid to get educated, why would not everyone stay in school the maximum time allowable? What if everyon tried to get a PHD and then decided they didn't want to work? How would society recoup their investment in education on such a person?

[-] -1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

People who enjoy school would stay in as long as possible. But not every job requires a PhD. If you didn't want to work you wouldn't be able to survive. So I would imagine very few people would do that.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

This contradicts your points that everyone has a job and that everyone is wealthy. Are you proposing that the lazy among us be allowed to starve in the streets with no food and no health care?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Everyone is guaranteed a job, but nobody is forced to work one. If you choose not to work, you would not have a job and probably would not be wealthy.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

So, would they be allowed to starve and be without health care?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

No, nobody will starve or go without health care because they do not have money.

[-] 1 points by craigdangit (326) 2 years ago

Why not stay in for a PHD and then work for minimum wage? Incentive economics.

Do you really think people who don't want to work should be thrown to the wolves and left to starve? No welfare at all?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

If someone wants a phd, they will get a phd. I don't understand your point. The welfare program is you are guaranteed a job that pays at least $115k. If you don't want to work, work a few years, save your money and live off the savings.

[-] 1 points by craigdangit (326) 2 years ago

What if they don't want to work at all? Like, ever. What happens then?

What I was saying is, why wouldn't everyone get a PHD? They are being paid to go to school, why not? If everyone has the opportunity to be in the highest tier of income, who would stay behind and do the lowest paying jobs?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

If you don't work, ever, you will have no income. So you probably would need to work some of the time in order to survive.

I don't think everyone wants to get a phd. Difficult work gets you the higher pay, not a phd. If you got a phd in English and taught high school English, I would not consider that difficult work that requires paying extra to get people to do.

But if everyone got a phd in science, that would be great for society. 500 engineers working on automated landscaping equipment will eventually be more productive than the 1 million landscapers mowing our lawns. Our economy would grow much faster if we were all scientists. Science is where our wealth comes from.

[-] 1 points by craigdangit (326) 2 years ago

Would you make it illegal for a person to do extra work "on the side" for extra money? Like powerwash your neighbor's deck, fix their car, watch their kids or train their pets? Will people not do these things any way even if they are illegal? Capitalism is part of human nature. It is not going away. It is natural to trade things you have for things you want.

[-] -1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

The only thing that would be illegal would be taking more money than the maximum allowed under the plan. Everyone would be guaranteed a job at the minimum, but you could choose to work for less. And anyone would be able to start their own business. You just wouldn't be able to earn more than the pay plan so private investing would be limited to small ventures.

You can also trade with anyone you want. You just can't use trading to take more income than the pay plan.

It is absurd to say capitalism, an economic system, is a part of human nature. We don't need capitalism any more than we need feudalism or totalitarianism.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

Who would underwrite the payment of the minimum wage? Would it be the government? If so, what is the tax rate necessary to sustain this?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I could explain everything in this comment. Or you could just read the post.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

I read the post. I didn't see how it would be paid for. Please explain.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You didn't read the post, otherwise you would have saw this:

See the calculation in paying everyone from $115k to $460k:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662000

[-] 1 points by craigdangit (326) 2 years ago

I have X, which is worth less to me than Y, you have Y and want X.

We trade.

Welcome to humanitarian economics! This forms the basis of every human-to-human and business interaction. It does not matter what the variables are. Consumer goods, Labor, Money, Dirt, Food, whatever. It is all the same. This form of interaction has been around ever since people have. No one has been wronged or negatively affected unless we hurt them in some way, no matter how much we do this.

There is no way governments can stop it, they can only tinker with the pricing. Outlawing substances, such as alcohol, does not prevent their use, it only raises the prices. I assure you the government will never stop people from making more than 460,000 dollars per year.

So, in closing, if I am getting paid by my neighbors $5,000 each on average to fix their cars, I can only fix 92 cars in a year before the government needs to stop me. Why? Who am I hurting if I fix 93 cars in a year?

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Like I said, 2 people can make a mutual trade all they want. But working for a company that produces things for customers at a profit is completely different than 2 people trading.

Capitalism does harm by enabling people to use their bargaining power to take increasingly more of the available income which leaves too little income for everyone else.

The government can stop people from taking more than $460k by making it illegal just like it makes printing fake money illegal or earning money without paying a tax illegal. Of course some people will break the law. But they will only make up a very, very, very small percentage of the population.

You are not hurting someone by fixing 93 cars. You are hurting others by taking more than $460k for fixing them.

[-] 1 points by craigdangit (326) 2 years ago

You realize this will create a goods-based economy instead of a monetary one? People who want to work extra time will produce non-monetary things of value and trade them for things of greater value. You won't stop people from producing more than 460,000 dollars worth of goods in a year, you can only limit the ones who will follow the law. I guess eliminating cash is going to be necessary in your scenario?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Did you mean a barter economy instead of a monetary one? The implementation of an income tax has not driven the entire economy underground. And neither would this plan. Very few people are willing to break the law, especially when they think the law is fair.

Most people will think a minimum income of $115k and the opportunity to earn $460k is a pretty fair deal. You really have to be uniquely greedy to be willing to break the law because you think your time is worth more than $460k.

I do advocate eliminating cash because it is expensive and very inefficient. It requires millions of people doing pointless accounting work just to keep track of it all.

[-] 1 points by craigdangit (326) 2 years ago

Again, it is not ours to decide how much our time is worth. The value of our time is decided based on how much money we can get others to voluntarily give us in a year's time. You realize that money, in a non-theft instance, is just a certificate indicating that you have helped another person a specific amount? The more people you help, the more they give you. If I fix 93 cars in a year, and 93 people voluntarily give me $5,000 to do so, I still have harmed no one. There is not a person on the earth who is unable to do the same thing I did in that year. To imply that economies are a pile of money, and everyone runs up and grabs theirs like a piniata party, and people who satisfy more than $460,000 worth of customers in a year have somehow cheated, is so undeniably false it cannot even be reasoned with in a debate. Economies are pot lucks, where everyone brings some and takes some. If you take more than you bring, you are cheating. If you want something that costs $100, you need to help enough other people get what they want in order for them to give you the $100. No one is harmed by this.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"If I fix 93 cars in a year, and 93 people voluntarily give me $5,000 to do so, I still have harmed no one"

Fixing 93 cars does not harm anyone. But a system that allows you to take more in income for fixing them than everyone else does harm others. There is only so much income available. For every dollar you take above average, that is one dollar someone else now has to make below average. Compounding the problem is the ability to make even more income based on how much income you have. That process leads to greater concentrations of income which leaves less and less income for everyone else.

It leads to today where 97% make a below average income and half the population is in or near poverty. A system that leaves half the population in poverty is a system that does a lot of harm.

A more fair system would be to have you get paid the same amount as everyone else who are working just as hard as you.

The fact that you generated more than $460k in income means nothing.

Consumers do not make any kind of statement about how income should be allocated or what workers should get paid when they make purchases. When they pay you to get their car fixed, they do it because they think that the fix is worth the price. They are not doing it because they think they should make less income at their job so that you can make more income at yours.

If consumers had a choice between paying Price A where they earn $33k at their job and you can make as much as you want at yours or Price B where they earn at least $115k at their job and you get paid the same amount as every other mechanic, then the market would be valuing workers.

And once consumers do have this power to value workers, our current system comes to an end because nobody is going to voluntarily choose to earn $82k less at their job so that others can make as much as they want at theirs.

[-] 1 points by craigdangit (326) 2 years ago

Your claim that such a plan would not cause inflation has been debunked numerous times and I have no idea why you keep propagating it. Suppose an item (for simplicity, a clay pot) takes a person one hour of labor to dig out of the ground and form, then fire. At $15 per hour, that pot is worth currently $15 to the potter. $115,000 per year/2,000 hours of work per year means that pot is now worth $57.50 to the potter just to make minimum wage. There is no way around this. This does not even account for the labor required to sweep the floor in the pottery, distribute the pots to the stores, drive the truck, etc.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I can assure you nobody here has debunked basic math.

I never said some products and services won't go up in price. I said that the ones that go up in price will be fully offset by others going down in price. So overall, prices on average will remain the same.

If a cup maker gets a $50 increase in pay, those cups will go up in price by $50. But that $50 came from lowering someone else's income by exactly $50. So that person's product would be reduced by $50.

For every 100 workers, 97 will get a pay increase, 50 will see their pay increase 450% and this will be fully offset by just 3 people getting a pay decrease.

[-] 1 points by engineer4 (272) 2 years ago

Next topic is money and savings. If there is no interest to be earned, then why would I save? I may as well keep it in a matress, makes no difference. If there is no savings, then there is no capital for mortgages. If the bank does give me interest, how do they not charge others for loan interest in order to pay me? You talk about a natural savings rate? If there is no incentive to save, then it's the mattress or spend. Excessive spending would also lead to inflation driven by excessive demand. Just To ask: have you ever taken economics classes (not just 101)? You seem to have no concept of the supply and demand curves, price /wage inflation, macro/micro, etc. One other point. Be careful how you define poverty as probably 2 billion people would gladly trade their lives for one here!

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You would save because you were unable to spend every last dime you were given as soon as you were given it. It does not matter where you put the money. The only thing that matters is how much is being spent. Whatever is not being spent is available for lending.

I have a degree in business which required graduate level economics courses. I worked for the Fed. I worked as an investment banker which is a job you can only get by attending a top tier business school. I have owned several businesses. And studying economics and political science is a hobby of mine. So I am as well informed on the subject as anyone.

Poverty around the world would end if they adopted the system I promote here.

[-] 0 points by engineer4 (272) 2 years ago

Actually i am a very happy retiree who worked from the bottom up and used the opportunities as they came. Your statement is full of holes. I will start with wages. Suppose I make 100k in my position and the office cleaner makes 50k. We both get raised to 115k? Sounds like equal pay for different levels of work and responsibility. Or would I get a raise also to equal same wage adjustment to 165k? How does the business support this without increase in costs which is passed on to every product, which creates enormous inflation, and then all product prices rise leaving everyone back to where they originally were with an increase in number only but not reality. Your assumption is with a large corporation only for getting the savings to pay for this. What about all the other businesses where the owners make no where near what you are assuming yet are supposed to just raise the wage and not adjust price? That is an impossibility. You would ruin every small to medium size business in this country, and then you would have a worse situation than where you started with unemployment through the roof! As a response to variable rates: who in their right mind would take a variable rate loan when the rate was at its lowest historical point in our lifetime?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Your anecdotal story of success does not mean the system is good or works well for everyone.

If you both do physically or mentally difficult work, you will get paid twice the amount as everyone else. You would get paid $230k. Like I said, if you just read the proposal, it would be a lot better than me answering all these questions.

Prices do not go up because for every $1 we increase someone's pay, we are decreasing someone else's pay by $1. All we are doing is redistributing existing income, not increasing the amount of income that is being paid out.

Some things will cost more. But that would be offset by other things costing less. Overall, prices on average remain the same.

A very large percentage of the mortgages involved in the housing crisis were variable rate mortgages. I bought a house and took a variable rate mortgage because it had a 1% interest rate. As the amount increased, I refinanced. But I had a few years at below market rates. The variable rate loans got you a lower interest rate.

[-] 1 points by engineer4 (272) 2 years ago

You did not address the small business issue. How would most businesses is this country survive without raising prices. There is no offset in small business to accomplish what you propose. And you say that you were a graduate student? Have you forgotten what they taught you in those economic classes? And why are you equating physical and mental work when you know it is not. The ditch digger would claim he does more work than the IT person. How would you possibly measure it.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

if small businesses owned by it's members gains and losses would be taking by those participating

[-] 1 points by engineer4 (272) 2 years ago

Anyone can can start and own a small business and by that definition, they assume all the risk, but most employees would never desire that, nor do they have the capital to risk either.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

like in a casino ?

[-] 1 points by engineer4 (272) 2 years ago

So we can have a proper discussion or conversation, i need to ask: Do you have any understanding of business start up requirements and operations?

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

A business may need to raise prices if their expenses went up. If their price went up $100 that means some other company dropped their price by $100. All we are doing is redistributing existing income. Some things will become more expensive. Other things will become less expensive.

There is no precise definition for what would be considered hard work. That is why we would use the political process. But if a job had too few workers, whether from difficulty or some other reason, pay would be increased in order to fill the demand. So there would be some objective basis for what would qualify.

[-] 1 points by engineer4 (272) 2 years ago

Of course they raise the price. Hence inflation. So then I would buy from the other company and the one that rises price is done! Great contribution to the unemployment rate. Small business is the key driver ithe economy and you want to remove them and go with all large corporations. And Regionally it would be disastrous. And So I would rely on a politician to determine whatbisnhard work or not? I kow you are joking on that one. Most politicians can not find their way out a paper bag, let alone figure out work effort. Attention: new movement agency now required for determining your effort at work! Outstanding! More big government, more taxes and more inefficiency. What a wonderful proposal. Where can we sign up! NOT! This is a worthless proposal and is not worth the bytes it takes up on the Internet.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

pfft

if the internet has anything it's memory

[-] 1 points by engineer4 (272) 2 years ago

Do not understand your comment ??

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

his is a worthless proposal and is not worth the bytes it takes up on the Internet.

bytes are virtually free

[-] 2 points by engineer4 (272) 2 years ago

It resides somewhere, therefore it takes up space, irregardless whether it is "virtually" free or not.

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

actually it does matter

it means history does not need to be erased

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Inflation is the rise in the overall price level, not a rise in price at a single company. This proposal does not cause inflation because it does not increase the overall income that is getting paid out. So if some company raises its cost by $100, that extra $100 came by LOWERING the cost at some other company by exactly $100.

If a small company cannot compete on price with a larger company that means they are inefficient and not contributing to the economy. So they should not continue to be in business. Some small businesses can compete and they will continue to stay in business.

Unions have been effectively bargaining for wages and benefits for over a century. So the political process can certainly make reasonable proposals for workers to vote on regarding what jobs qualify for difficult work. If they get it wrong, they will have a shortage in workers in some difficult job which would force a fix.

The point is to limit differences in income so that there is enough to make everyone wealthy even those who do not work a difficult job. A minimum wage of $115k is a better deal for 97% of workers.

[-] 1 points by engineer4 (272) 2 years ago

The ratio of small to large companies would indeed create a price rise within the economy. Have you even considered pass through or value added costs. they would rise also, again putting pressure on inflation. Most efficient small business would be eliminated with this proposal and you know it. Secondly, you speak of union as if they are everywhere when you know they are to. And unions are notorious for negotiating ridiculous work separation rules just to pad the required union workers needed for a job. Unions are very inefficient that way, as you also know. So we would vote for determination of effort. So if there are 10 ditch diggers and 1 gang boss, I guess the gang boss gets less as the workers would surely never believe that the gang boss is working harder then them and would vote that so. The very concept of politicians setting work rules is absurd. You seem to be stating that government is also efficient? I think you are just trying to be petulant! And you know that this has no chance of actually working, so I am moving on.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

In 2010, the total price of everything produced was $14.5 trillion. In this plan, total expenses will be $14.5 trillion. So it is physically impossible to have inflation. There is no extra money in the economy to enable inflation to occur.

An economy where workers vote on allocation of income which limits difference in income to only what is necessary for it to be an effective incentive which pays you a minimum of $115k or $230k if you work a difficult job is a much, much, much, much better deal than you are getting now where a small group of wealthy people get to take most of the available income.

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 2 years ago

As an employee and a consumer who saves, I'd love to see my consumer good costs increase if it meant I could afford insurance and live a moderately paced life. I believe society wearing their consumer hat get too much consideration when distributing profits. I believe this is why unions were devised, so as to give workers more leverage with management and consumer demand for lower priced goods and services.

[-] -2 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

Public funds for private enterprise? financially foolish. does Solyndra ring a bell?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

As explained in the post, the funds will be invested by individually run banks that must remain financially viable in order to continue to exist, just as they are today. They will not be invested by the government.

And many of the new companies that you invest in will fail. That is the nature of the market and new ideas. Not all of them will work out.

[-] 0 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

So how will a struggling company work, if its pay structure is constrained by your wage laws?

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

It would work exactly the same way a struggling company works today. It will do all it can to convince consumers to purchase its goods and services at the price it can most efficiently produce it.

If it wants to limit its costs, it has to produce real efficiency by limiting the amount of labor it uses. It cannot produce fake efficiency by preying on the desperation of workers and lowering their income.

[-] 0 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

That makes no sense, sorry. You are contradicting yourself.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Do you know how business works? If a company is struggling, they better do a better job of generating revenue and limiting costs. If they don't, they will go out of business. That is how business works today. That is how business will work in the democratic economy proposed here.

[-] 0 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

Sorry but you are wrong. I know you want everyone to see the brilliance of your idea biput you refuse to see the clear flaws in your idea. Limiting costs means cutting labor costs. If you need 20 people to do a job, and you cant cut their hourly wage, you have yo let 10 go, but the tadks take 20.

I own several businesses and have built about 15 over my career.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Show me where in this proposal or in any of the comments I wrote does it say a company that needs 20 people to get a job done has to do it with only 10.

If customers aren't willing to pay the price of 20 workers then you or some competitor will have to automate some of your labor. If that is not possible then you will go out of business.

[-] 0 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

And if i go out out of business, too high of labor wages is the reason.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I don't understand your point. That is the way markets work. If consumers are not willing to buy what you are selling, you go out of business. You need to produce goods and services at a price consumers are willing to pay. If consumers are not willing to pay, your business should be shut down because it is not contributing to the economy. Those resources should be put towards producing things people are willing to buy.

[-] -3 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

And you arent getting it. people might want to buy it if the labor costs were less. You are fixing labor costs. We have had price fixing issues before and they fail miserably.

Lets say I want to sell TVs. If I have to pay the workers $115000, The TVs are expensive due to YOUR fuxed labor costs, so I ship them offshore, LIKE IS HAPPENING NOW. Its impossible to compete with fixed labor costs of $115000/employee.

Actually i think i see what you are doing. This is like the Colbert report, you are being sarcastic. Good one!

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"You said prices wouldnt be fixed, but you just fixed prices"

This is now the second time I am asking. Where in my comment did I say the price of goods and services is fixed?

And what does that have to do with the fact that people spending $50 for a teeth cleaning today DOES NOT mean people won't spend more than that if the cheapest dental cleaning you could get was more than $50?

Your comments do not make any sense.

[-] -1 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

You are fixing labor costs per employee at $115000 per employee. Labor is a service. Do you not comprehend what you yourself have written? A company cant have fixed labor costs and a floating priceline. Thats impossible.

I cant have a cogent discussion with someone who forgets what he writes.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"We already have a control group, there are lots of people today who make $115000 and they wont pay anymore than what something is worth."

What!?!

That is NOT a control group that says people won't pay more than $x for something!! lol

You really think people will stop getting their teeth cleaned if the price became $350?????

If 2 people sold donuts and 1 sold them for 50 cents each and another sold them for $4 each and everyone chose the 50 cent donuts that just means THEY WANT TO PAY THE CHEAPEST PRICE AVAILABLE. It does not mean people will never spend more than 50 cents for a donut!!!!!

If the cost of making donuts became more expensive and the cheapest price became $1 per donut, people will just pay the $1.

If the cheapest you can get a teeth cleaning for is $50, most will not pay more than that. But if the cheapest became $350, they will just pay that price and not choose teeth cleanings that cost more.

[-] 0 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

I am sorry but you are just lame. And you just utterly contradicted yourself. You said prices wouldnt be fixed, but you just fixed prices. Thats lame. Anyone can make a circular argument and you just did and made a total ass of yourself. Dont argue with someone smarter than you, me. Learn and refine your idea, till a savant like me cant destroy it like i just did.

i just busted your whole argument. Lick your wounds and re think your idea.

[-] -1 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

Then what you are saying is the demand for donuts is inelastic snd people will continue to psy whatever for donuts. Thats idiotic.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"No one will pay that."

Your claim is completely ridiculous.

If you asked workers, 50% of whom make less than $36k, whether they would want to continue to earn $36k and pay current prices or whether they would want to earn at least $115k and pay different prices, they would all take the $115k.

The increase in the hygienist pay came by decreasing someone else's pay. So the thing that someone else is making is cheaper by the same amount dental cleanings are more expensive. Your teeth cleaning may go up by $200 per year, but the amount you spend on movies may go down $200 per year.

In other words, their pay is increasing but their overall expenses are remaining the same.

It is ridiculous to say people do not want a 400% increase in pay because prices will be different.

[-] -1 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

You are really dense. I didnt say people dont want a 400% increase in pay, i said the services for which they do today wont be valued enough to pay them the increase. People wjo make $100000 today still only think a tooth cleaning is worth $50 or a donut is only worth 50c, or an Ipad is worth $700.

We already have a control group, there are lots of people today who make $115000 and they wont pay anymore than what something is worth.

[-] 2 points by deviantmuse (13) 2 years ago

It really takes a special kind of person to publicly advocate that we need poverty so that we can sell tvs.

Have you taken the time at all to think your worldview through?

Your position is that without poverty, we will not be able to sell tvs. And without the ability for business owners to reduce their worker's pay as much as possible, without the ability for business owners to make their workers poor, nobody will be able to get tvs in this country.

So poverty is good.

I believe you may be the first person I have ever run into that is pro poverty.

[-] -2 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

Who in America lives in true poverty.

Most people in America who dont have much money are lazy or stupid.

[-] -2 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

You offer nothing. you never shop for the lowest price? Bullshit.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Then what you are saying is the demand for donuts is inelastic snd people will continue to psy whatever for donuts. Thats idiotic."

First of all, you used the term inelastic incorrectly. What you should have said is elastic.

Second, I have no idea how much people will pay for donuts. You don't understand economics or economic terms or elasticity or price fixing or what is being proposed in this post or what I say in my comments or common sense. So this response is pointless.

But the point I was making was that when people choose to buy the 50 cent donuts instead of the $4 donuts, that does not mean 50 cents is the maximum people will pay for donuts.

IT JUST MEANS PEOPLE WANT TO PAY THE CHEAPEST PRICE AVAILABLE.

If they had the choice to buy 75 cent donuts or $4 donuts, they probably wouldn't stop buying donuts. They would probably buy the 75 cent donut. But that probably does not mean people will buy a $50 donut. I have no idea how much people are willing to pay for a donut.

[-] 1 points by sausages (1) 2 years ago

No he's right. An inelastic demand schedule means that even over large changes in price, quantity remains relatively the same. If you actually had the economics training you claim, you'd know that it is price on the y axis and quantity on the x axis. A perfectly inelastic demand schedule is a vertical line.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"A company cant have fixed labor costs and a floating priceline. Thats impossible."

You are wrong again. It is possible.

Have you heard of something called efficiency?

It means you produce more using less resources. It doesn't mean you produce more while paying your employees less.

You can still lower or raise your price even if you don't change what you pay each of your employees by using less or more labor. If you develop automation or a more efficient process that allows you to produce something with 9 employees instead of 10, you have just lowered your cost by 10% without changing what you pay each of your employees.

Do you think the price of technology plummets each year because the industry manages to pay its employees less and less each year?

Just so we are clear, what this post advocates is to democratically regulate incomes and although prices will be different, it does not mean we are going to fix prices, or that people will stop buying tvs, or that people will stop getting their teeth cleaned.

[-] 1 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

You are an idiot. Efficiency in the real world of economics means just that producing more with less resources, INCLUDING LESS LABOR. Increasing Productivity is the absolute backbone of a growing economy, and that means making more things with less. The whole trouble with the decaying state of affairs in Europe is due to exactly what you are advocating, high fixed labor and less output.

You dont have a clue. Your idea is stupid and will NEVER be implemented because jt violates basic fundamentals. Grow up.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You don't understand price fixing. I never said we must fix prices. If you can develop a more efficient production process, prices will come down.

I also never said labor costs have to be fixed. If you automate, you will reduce your labor cost.

I don't doubt consumers want things as cheap as possible. So you can advocate a system where people work for pennies and get a very, very, very, very small share of the available income in order to duplicate the horrific conditions in China. I will advocate the opposite.

Not every worker is getting an increase in pay. And the money to increase their pay is coming from reducing another worker's pay. So overall, labor costs are a wash.

So not everything is going to become more expensive. Some things will go up in price. But other things will go down in price by the exact same amount. So on average, prices remain the same.

[-] 0 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

What is going to come down in price? Gasoline? Water? Shelter? Food? Appliances?

please tell us what will comedown in price? All of the above are now being produced at incredibly efficient levels, so they wont and thats what people need, so your idea s dead there.

Please be specific, actual products and services that will go up and go down. No theory, real life examples.

[-] 0 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

Let me ilustrate. Lets say you are a dental hygienist. I would guess by your model, the pay would be $230000. More than a maid, less than a doctor.

By your model, she should have a 20 hour wook week. Cant be automated. She would only work 1000/year. She would have to charge $350 a tooth cleaning.

No one will pay that.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

This is really interesting. Most don't understand it provokes them to think. It is real on one side, but the problem is no one in Congress will support it.

A) a comment below got me asking how we can motive people for new or urgent or emergency projects.

B) I think I understand that many people want status, want to work and want to increase/gain a reputation as a strong, smart, capable worker manager/engineer/intellectual/philosopher/economist/teacher/ and etc.

C) And I think this proposal understands that most people don't work. We have elderly, kids, handicap, stay at home spouses, and others that are infirm, addicts, or whatever.

D) Honest Motivation would have to do with saving people, being inventive, wanting status as a manager, or wanting to be the best as teaching, art, music, history, writing, law, civil engineering, technology engineering, scientific vision, economic vision, or media vision.

E) My understanding of people is many people just want love and status and fulfillment. I went to Business School to secure a future with a job that I could not see without going to business school. The experience of going to Business School is that people see you different, you think a bit different, and your skills are a bit different.

F) There is a problem with assholes that want to judge or condemn all other people. They will never be satisfied. It is likely a personality defect. It is comparable to alcoholism. This is prevalent in the US.

G) There is a problem with people that want to be rich or in control at all costs. They will or have abandoned moral and ethical guidelines. These are the people that engage in law breaking. Many people fall into this lifestyle of breaking rules and committing fraud of one kind or another. Maybe someone that wants to build a casino will steal money or commit fraud.

H) The most important lesson here is that we should consider that a person from one job, one industry, one discipline, one set of training, or one background - thinks different. If you want to separate rich people with training at a Washington DC Think Tank or Washington DC Jesuit College from others then this is a step forward in seeing how differnt people think.

I) Oh and we have former prisoners and maybe other people with clouds over their heads. Somehow these people have to be able to rejoin society, get jobs, get apartments, ...and maybe get forgiveness.

J) Oh and the problem of communicating this vision. What you are talking about is a cultural shift or a new paradigm in Business, Government, Politics, and Economics. Great we need that. But it is like shifting from having slaves, or grabbing free land, to an extreme social system. I should add the Crap about pulling yourself up by your boot straps is another myth to fight.

K) I think it is workable, congress won't support it, and it is a cultural jump/shift/paradigm.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"the problem is no one in Congress will support it"

Of course not. They are owned by the wealthy who want to keep the system just the way it is.

That is why this will only come about by workers going on a general strike. A strike can bring about these changes in a matter of days.

97% of workers would get a pay increase. 50% of all workers will see their income more than quadruple.

So there are more than enough workers who would be willing to do this and make it happen. They just need to be organized.

If there are people "who want to be rich at all costs" then they should support this. Because this plan gives them 100% chance at becoming wealthy. Our current system gives them a 3% chance.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Today I have some new questions.

1) This will be a massive increase in the money supply, so we have to expect inflation. How does your plan implement the increase in payments to workers, and how does it visualize a balance between supply and demand of goods that would not drive prices massively higher. I'm guessing public ownership of production and distribution and price controls (I'm a slower reader).

2) How do you define workers. I'm thinking you are paying peole that chose not to work or who are adults who stay at home. So all adults are paid $115K till a retirement age. I suppose Students could be paid $25K-$50K.

3) I found it "that would enable us to pay $460,000 per year to the top 2.5% of all workers; $230,000 per year to the 12.3 million workers who do the mentally or physically difficult work of science, computers, engineering, medicine, construction, mining, and farming; and $115,000 to everyone else."

4) Foreign Policy and this competition between countries for natural resources or whatever that leads to war. War seems be a US Culture. The US is sort of unique in retaining a frontier culture, a gun culture, and a war culture.

5) You plan might create massive sales of firearms by citizens.

6) War hawks will fight your plan, and may still continue to start wars overseas. You plan would not change the way Washington DC see other countries around the world. But then again, if we see all people as valueable, intelligent, and inventive...who knows.

7) Obviously your plan includes an end to corporate Lobbying and an end to congressional gift giving, correct?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

1) The money supply is not being increased. All we are doing is redistributing existing income. Redistributing existing income does not cause inflation. The increase in the minimum worker worker pay to $115k is fully offset by the decrease in the top earning worker pay to $460k.

2) We will still have disability programs for people who are unable to work. And we will also have a pension system for everyone who retires. This sill be paid for with taxes. If we kept the FICA tax at 15% and had every worker pay that tax, it would enable us to pay retired workers $60k. We would vote on what the pension plan is.

7) There will still be lobbying. You still need a right to petition your government. The difference is that there are no financial benefits to be had. All income is allocated according to the national pay plan.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

Are you going to redistribute at the point of a gun? If you make it policy that you are going to take 85% of someone's wealth they will leave unless you suggest making emigration illegal like the Soviet bloc countries used to do.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I am not taking anyone's wealth. 97% of workers would increase their wealth. And the compensation plan would be voted on by the workers. It is a democracy.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

But not tyranny of the majority. Would you forceably confiscate the excess wealth of those that currently have it? Please answer with a straight yes or no. Then, if yes, how do you keep them from emigrating and if no, how do you intend to get at it?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

This plan does not forcefully confiscate the excess wealth of anyone. And anyone is free to leave the country.

What I do advocate is a strike. If every worker went on a strike, every business would become worthless. You cannot maintain a business if you have no workers. So after the strike, the workers would take over all the failed businesses.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

If every worker went on strike, from where would you procure your food?

If every business became worthless, who starts paying the 115k per year after the strike is over?

Do you really believe your ideas are realistic?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

In a general strike, the only people who go on strike are those who work in non-critical, non-emergency fields. So you can still get food and medicine.

If the strike worked, the workers would then take ownership of the nation's businesses. They would all be democratically owned. So they would go back to producing $15 trillion in income each year which we would use to allocate to all the workers according to a plan that the workers approve as described in this proposal.

I certainly do think a democratic economy is realistic. Workers would get such a better deal in life. They have everything to gain and if they organized, they would hold all the power to make those changes.

Raising your income to $115k or $230k, reducing the week to 20 hours, cutting your mortgage in half by eliminating interest, is a pretty big deal and would radically improve the vast majority of workers' lives.

The wealthy few who run this country know that their reign comes to an end if the workers ever organized. That is why their primary goal is to break up any attempt at workers organizing. It is now illegal for unions to strike for political purposes and they use the law to make it as difficult as possible for workers to organize.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

I know others have pointed this out to you, but a "democratic economy" isn't even a real thing. Democracy and monarchy are examples of political systems. Capitalism and socialism are examples of economic systems. You suggest you have all this real world experience but you cannot seem to grasp this simple distinction.

I know I am going to regret this but could you explain the "process" by which the workers would take control of business? Would the current owners be forced to sell? Would all businesses collapse and simply be replaced? Once this magical transformation occurs, would every business decision be subject to vote by all of the workers?

You are great at sweeping generalizations like (duh) my life would be better if I made more and worked less. You are a bit short on the details of how this utopia would be accomplished.

[Removed]

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

All your questions are answered in the actual post.

Economy is actually short for political economy. To say the economy is not political just demonstrates your lack of education in political science. The people who comment here don't know economics, political science, what GDP is, how GDP is calculated, what the difference between average and median is, what the difference between household and worker is, how markets work or how our monetary system works.

Democracy just means power rests with everyone equally. You can use democracy to run your government, run your family, run your baseball team, decide what's for dinner or run an economy.

Democracy is defined in the post and I specifically wrote about what it means to make an economy democratic:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-661383

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-663128

"explain the "process" by which the workers would take control of business"

Without workers, every business will become bankrupt. When every business is bankrupt, there is nobody to sell your business assets to in bankruptcy. So the only real option is for the existing workers to take ownership and meet the demands of the striking workers. Will some owners get compensated? Perhaps. It is impossible to say exactly how it will play out.

"would every business decision be subject to vote by all of the workers? "

No. Business would run exactly as it does now. The only difference is they will be financed with public funds and total income will be democratically allocated. Read the post.

[-] 1 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

Here is another flaw in your theory. Most products that people need are being produced at very very efficient levels. Water, Food, gasoline, heating oil, clothing. You will have to dramatically raise the cost of the basic necessities, make them dramatically more expensive, for the aversge family. Inorder to fund this, you will have to find people making other things, non essentials and gorce them to sell their stuff at vastly cheaper prices to pay for the now grossly overpriced food and water and clothes. The people that work at those jobs, making snowmobiles and bass boats and steak dinners who dont make $115000 now, will be destroyed.They are already not making $115000, and now basic food, clothing, water, gasoline which skyrocketed in cost due to way higher labor costs will not be within their wages.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"An increase in the price of labor is the textbook definition of a DECREASE in efficiency"

No it is not.

The textbook definition is: "In economics, the term economic efficiency refers to the use of resources so as to maximize the production of goods and services. An economic system is said to be more efficient than another (in relative terms) if it can provide more goods and services for society without using more resources."

That is the definition in the textbook Economics: Principles in action.

Efficiency has to do with the amount of resources you use, not how much you pay for them. Increasing the costs of labor may make a company less profitable, but the efficiency in which they use their resources has not changed. They still use THE SAME EXACT AMOUNT OF RESOURCES in producing their goods and services.

.

"Funds are not unlimited they need to used efficiently and using them inefficiently is called opportunity cost."

That is also not the definition of opportunity cost.

Opportunity cost is not spending your money inefficiently. Opportunity cost is the cost of an alternative that must be forgone in order to pursue a certain action. If you only have $1000 to spend, and you want a computer and a tv, and you can only afford one of those items, and you choose the tv, the opportunity cost is the price of the computer.

You don't understand the difference between average and median. You incorrectly used the terms elasticity, efficiency and opportunity cost. And below we learn that you don't know what an investment bank does.

It is fine not to understand economics. Most people don't. And it is fine not to immediately understand how it all works. For many it is not so intuitive. But it is bizarre as to why you are so confident in the conclusions you are drawing in a subject you have demonstrated to know little about.

.

"Under your scheme, the costs of food and gasoline will skyrocket. However, no one needs Goldman Sachs or snowmobiles"

First, you may not use the services of goldman sachs, but the companies that produce the things you buy do use their services. So the cost of goldman's services is built into the price of the things you buy. When companies need financing, they go to investment banks like Goldman Sachs.

Since financing costs are a large expense in company operations, a reduction in those costs will cause a reduction in price.

Second, show me proof that the price of food will skyrocket. Show me the proof that the cost of food manufacturers and all their inputs will go up in price. All you do is point out the increase in incomes. You completely disregard the decrease in incomes some workers will have. Do you not think people make more than what this proposal advocates?

If your food cost goes up $10,000 per year, then something else has to go down $10,000 per year that equals that. Everyone buys food. Very few people buy snowmobiles. If you only reduce the cost of snowmobiles by $10k, that won't be enough to equal the $10k increase in food costs.

Food is something that everyone buys. So if food goes up $10k, then other things that everyone also buys will go down by $10k.

So if your food goes up by $10k per year and your car and gas go down by $10k per year, are you worse off, better off or the same?

[-] 1 points by pasteurize (19) 2 years ago

Going through these comments to make sense of this thread, I have noticed that you are trying to deny the results of simple math and you have used economic terms incorrectly like efficiency and elasticity. You may want to rethink your position.

[-] 1 points by deviantmuse (13) 2 years ago

Maybe this will better help you in understanding what DemandThe is trying to say:

http://www.khanacademy.org/math/arithmetic/addition-subtraction/v/basic-addition

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"I completely understand the idea. Everything will balance out. However you have not, let me make this crystal clear, addressed differing levels of demand for some things. Your entire model rests on the idea that demand is equal for all things. It isnt."

So now that I have shown you the fallacy in your argument that overall prices will rise, you want to pretend that what you really meant was demand will rise?

Go through all the comments I have made to you and just replace the word "price" with "demand" because my answer to your demand argument is exactly the same as my answer to your price argument.

Demand will change. But overall demand will not go up since we are paying out the same overall income.

The demand for some goods and services will go up and that demand will be met by lowering the demand of other goods and services.

The demand for new 5,000 square foot homes will go up and that increased demand will be met by eliminating the demand for new 35,000 square foot homes.

The demand for BMWs will go up but that demand will be met by lowering the demand for Bentleys, Rolls Royces, Maseratis, Lamborghinis, and Ferraris.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Labor cost is part of the efficiency, you dont want to admit that."

You don't understand efficiency.

An increase in the amount of labor time you use is a loss of efficiency.

An increase in the price you pay for labor is NOT a loss of efficiency.

If you use the same amount of labor, but the price you pay for labor has gone up, that does not mean you have decreased efficiency.

[-] 0 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

No, you dont understand and i see now why you think the way you do. An increase in the price of labor is the textbook definition of a DECREASE in efficiency. Any money spent on labor, especially set by law is money not able to be spent on capital, tooling, marketing, organizatiion, and hiring new labor for new projects. Funds are not unlimited they need to used efficiently and using them inefficiently is called opportunity cost.

If you had any knowledge of econ, you know i am right. Your theory is destroyed.

Since you dont understand this absolute bedrock principle of fundamental economics, you void your entire theory.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"You have no evidence it wont go up in cost."

Some things will go up in price. This will be fully offset by other things going down in price. I think I have driven this point home in all of my responses to you.

But have you read the proposal in full and specifically this comment which goes through the numbers and cites the government sources they are based on:

See the calculation in paying everyone from $115k to $460k:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662000

.

"And you didnt address the gross inefficienies you idea would cause in industries that are now very efficient."

Let's first understand what efficiency is. Efficiency is the amount of resources (labor, materials and energy) you use to produce something. Just because workers will get paid differently, that does not mean companies need to use more labor, materials, or energy in their production and will therefore become less efficient. That makes no sense.

Companies will continue to use the same amount resources in production that they do now. However, I think they will become more efficient. Now that you have to pay full price for the time of a human laborer, ridiculous jobs like door men or cashiers and tens of millions of others will be done away with.

[-] 1 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

I completely understand the idea. Everything will balance out. However you have not, let me make this crystal clear, addressed differing levels of demand for some things. Your entire model rests on the idea that demand is equal for all things. It isnt.

[-] 1 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

Labor cost is part of the efficiency, you dont want to admit that.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"again, whose money are you decreasing? BE SPECIFIC? NAME names of industries who can afford to hsve their products cut in price?"

DONT JUST SAY IT, BE ABSOLUTELY CLINICAL IN YOUR THOUGHTS OF THE 3% that can have their profucts cut in value."

I never said I know what will go up in price and what will go down. That would require me to look at the individual incomes of every employee at every company. I do not have access to that data.

I have access to the aggregate data which are reliable government numbers.

So I can say with 100% confidence that the increase in some worker pay is fully offset by the decrease in other worker pay.

But if I were to make a guess, it would be capital equipment and financing that would come down in price. The financial industry is the highest paid industry. Nearly everyone at goldman sachs would get a pay decrease. And since capital equipment requires a lot of financing and since financing would be cheaper, capital equipment would be cheaper.

Also, everyone who does not work and earns interest, no matter how small the amount, would lose 100% of that income. The incomes cited in this proposal are based on 100% of the income being paid to workers.

[-] 1 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

Again with the deflection. Most people need food. Most people need gasoline. Under your scheme, the costs of food and gasoline will skyrocket. However, no one needs Goldman Sachs or snowmobiles. Snowmobiles arent a necessity, and they are being produced very efficiently now with low labor costs. No one will buy a snowmobile, because they will be paying so much for food.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Everyone is guaranteed a job. We will never run out of work to do. We will just invest whatever amount is necessary to employ everyone. So there will never be unemployment.

The money used to increase the pay of workers comes by decreasing the pay of other workers. So overall, prices on average do not go up. Some goods and services may go up in price. They will be fully offset by other goods and services going down in price.

In 2010 we paid out a total of $14.5 trillion in income. In this plan, we are paying out a total of $14.5 trillion in income. So it is mathematically impossible to have inflation.

Food in a restaurant, for example, may go up in price. But you have no evidence that it will. Certainly the people working at the restaurant will get raises. But that may be fully offset by a decrease in the owner's income or by decreases in the price of their food or rent or other expenses.

It is impossible to tell which will go up and which will go down. But since we know the aggregate does not go up in price, we know differences in prices offset each other.

If we just increased the pay of some workers without offsetting that fully by exact decreases in other worker pay, it would require us to pay out more than $14.5 trillion in income.

This is grade school level math.

[-] -1 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

Please be specific. You just talk in generalities.

You have no evidence it wont go up in cost. And you didnt address the gross inefficienies you idea would cause in industries that are now very efficient.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

So the workers will not own the businesses, "the public" which really means "the government" will. Oh yes, that should work out splendidly.

Oh, and you refused to explain the process as I requested. Is it because you have no idea how that will occur? Reminds me of the South Park underwear knomes. Step one, collect underwear. Step three, profit. Step two is yet to be determined.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"So, all contracts are abrogated through the force of law? It is easy to say something like "You may have to re-do contracts". It is much harder to work out the details."

So 150 million people must live in or near poverty because it is too hard to re-do contracts?

We can understand the universe and transplant hearts but we cannot figure out how to re-do a contract?

You don't see how stupid your arguments are?

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

Why can't you give details about HOW to accomplish what you seek? It is easy to say what, much harder to say how. Personally, I think you refuse to give details because you simply don't know how to accomplish your stated goal. Now you turn to personal attacks as a way to deflect from your inability to provide any details. The saying "the devil is in the details" came about for good reason. You provided the stated solution. I am only asking you to back it up by stating the methods you would propose to accomplish this goal.

[-] 1 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 2 years ago

A 5000 page contract is the new " baffling with BS " tactic used to counter mass communication of the day.. even a 150 million people couldn't wrap their head around it.. confusion- todays weapon of choice

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"You were going good there with a reasoned response until you threw in that little slavery nugget."

Every time you attribute a claim to me that I did not make (like saying I think businesses exist in a vacuum), I am going to respond to it by attributing a claim to you that you did not make (like saying you want slavery to return). That seems reasonable.

.

"I also think it borders on criminal the wages top CEO's get in comparison to their workers."

The problem is not just CEOs.

The root cause of nearly every problem in society is lack of income and people only lack income because some people, like CEOs, unfairly take far more of the available income than they deserve which leaves too little income for everyone else.

Poverty and financial struggle does not exist because the poor and struggling don't want to work or because they don't want to work hard. It does not exist because there is not enough income to go around and not enough income to put an end to financial struggle and not enough income to make everyone wealthy (worker productivity in this country is $65 per hour which means if everyone was paid equally, full-time workers would get paid $135k, so there is more than enough income to make everyone wealthy). Poverty and financial struggle exists because some people, like CEOs, take far, far, far more income than they deserve. They unfairly take so much of the available income that there simply isn't enough income left over to pay everyone else.

Even though the bottom 97% of workers do almost all of the work, they get paid very little of what they produce. The lion's share of the wealth they produce gets paid to the top 3%. Every worker in America in 2012 should be wealthy. But since most of their income is unfairly taken by the top 3%, instead, 97% of workers are making below average incomes and 50% of them are in poverty or close to it.

That is not fair. The top 3% do not deserve to take the incomes they do and should not have the power to leave the bottom 97% broke.

The reason why the top 3% don't deserve to make the incomes they do is because 1) they don't work harder than everyone else, 2) they don't get this money from willing consumers in the market, 3) they shouldn't have the power to force the rest of society into poverty or financial struggle.

It is unfair for CEOs to take 500 times more than everyone else because they don't work 500 times harder than everyone else. If you take more in income than what is necessary to get people to do difficult work and give their maximum effort, you are no longer getting paid for hard work. Since the purpose of income is to motivate you to work hard, the only way to fairly allocate income is based on hard work. So it is unfair for people to take more than whatever is necessary to get them to work hard.

I argue that we don't need to pay people any more than $460k in order to get them to work hard, so everyone who takes more than this amount (or whatever we determine the amount to be) is unfairly taking more income than they deserve. So it is not just the CEOs that are guilty. And it is not just the capitalists, as socialists argued in the past, that are guilty. It is the celebrities, pro athletes, entrepreneurs, movie stars, music stars, lottery winners, recipients of large inheritances, etc. who are all guilty.

A-Rod, who gets paid $25 million per year to play third base for the Yankees, is just as guilty as the CEOs.

But paying A-Rod 1000 times more income than everyone else even though he doesn't work 1000 times harder than everyone else is not the only reason why that is unfair. It is also unfair because he wasn't given this money by willing consumers in the market. When consumers, like baseball fans, make a purchase, like a ticket to a baseball game, they are only valuing the good or service they are purchasing. They are only saying that seeing the baseball game live is worth the ticket price. They are not saying they want to make $90K less than the $135k average income at their job so that A-Rod can make $25 million at his. When a consumer makes a purchase, they are not in any way endorsing the current allocation of income.

And lastly, it is unfair for people like CEOs and baseball players to take the incomes they do because doing so forces everyone else to struggle. It forces 97% of all workers to make a below average income and forces 50% of all Americans to live in poverty or close to it.

It is unfair to give the Yankees third baseman the power to force others into poverty.

This is just simple math. Even though the economy grows, there is still only so much income to go around. So for every $1 someone takes above the $135k average, that is $1 that someone else is now forced to make below the $135k average. When A-Rod gets paid $25 million, he is forcing the rest of the labor force to make $25 million less.

Struggle and most problems in society exist because a very, very, very small handful of capitalists, CEOs, celebrities, pro athletes, entrepreneurs, movie stars, music stars, lottery winners, recipients of large inheritances, and other workers take more income than they deserve which leaves too little income left over for everyone else. It is the reason why people lack income and lack of income is the root cause of nearly every social problem.

There is nothing more important in society than the allocation of income. Not only does income determine your standard of living and quality of life, but it also determines your freedom and political power.

A person who gets paid $25 million per year has far more freedom to do whatever they want with their life than someone who makes $25k per year. And they can also use that income to wield far more political power. They can finance think tanks, ad campaigns, entire media outlets, political campaigns and lobbying which is something a person who makes $25k cannot do.

Since we do not allocate worker income based on how hard you work, that means our society simply is not fair.

And since we allow a system that unfairly keeps most workers in poverty or struggling even though we have more than enough income to make everyone in society wealthy, that means our society simply is not humane.

And since a democratic society is a society where everyone has equal freedom and political power and since our society concentrates income in the hands of the few, which means it concentrates freedom and political power in the hands of a few, that means our society simply is not democratic.

So we need to stop allocating most of our available income to a few people at the top who do not deserve it. In order to have a fair, humane and democratic society, we must allocate income based on hard work.

.

"However, if you drop their salary down to $450k immediately and they are servicing the debt on their 10 million dollar house, do you really think there will be anything left over for investment?"

I don't know if there will be enough savings to fund the proper level of investment. But it does not matter. Because we can easily raise the investment level with a business investment tax on production.

The cost of investment is always built into the price consumers pay for final goods and services. In order for a company to cover the cost of an investment, they have to raise the price of what they are selling so they have extra revenue to pay for the extra investment expense.

When you buy corn, part of the price of corn is going to pay for the investment a farmer made into buying a tractor.

A developed country spends roughly 10% of its GDP on investment. So roughly 10% of the price of everything you pay goes towards investment. If, for example, savings went to zero, company investment would go to zero. Prices would subsequently drop by 10%.

Since we need roughly 10% of our GDP to go towards investment, we could fix that by the central bank charging a flat 10% "investment tax" on all sales. Prices would return to normal and we would have enough investment money available. The money raised from the investment tax would be the pool of money banks use to make investments with.

Central banks under this plan would also be required to make sure there was always enough investment available to maintain full employment.

.

"The GDP goes to pay for a lot more than just salary. It goes to funding business also. If you use all of the GDP for salary, business investment will naturally fall, causing a spiraling down of the GDP."

The only thing GDP goes towards is paying someone's income. Everything we spend money on winds up as someone's income. It winds up as someone's wage, profit, interest or rent.

GDP = Investment + Consumption + Government + Net Exports

So some income is paid to produce Investment goods and services, some income is paid to produce Consumption goods and services, some income is paid to produce Government goods and services, and some income is paid to produce Export goods and services.

100% of GDP has to be paid out as income to someone.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"So you are saying the government's numbers and the NYT are 9 trillion apart? I don't buy that."

I don't know what the difference is between the govt and Times numbers are. What I'm saying is that if you want to know what the total income is, you have to look at the BEA's number since they are the govt agency responsible for producing it, you shouldn't be looking at a Times article about taxes.

So you are saying a Times article about taxes is a more accurate measure of total income than the total income number reported by the government agency responsible for computing total income? I don't buy that and neither does the entire economics profession.

There are a couple of other things to keep in mind.

First, my numbers are based on dividing total income by total hours worked. So it is based on the assumption that 100% of the income is getting paid to workers. If you include people who do not work and collect interest income in your average, that is going to make your average lower.

Second, dividing by hours worked instead of just number of workers enables you to account for part-time workers. If you and I both made $65 per hour, but you worked 20 hours ($1300) and I worked 40 hours ($2600), our average income should be $65 per hour. So the correct average income of someone working full-time would be $2600.

However, if you just took total income ($3900) and divided by 2, you would come up with an average income of $1950. That number is obviously wrong. It is too low since it didn't take into account that 1 of the workers only worked part-time.

Since we have 1 part-time worker for every 2 full-time workers and since the average hours worked per week for each part-time worker is 13 hours, not accounting for them is going to skew your average significantly.

.

"Your numbers rely upon an arbitrary statement of what percentage are "top" workers and what percentage are "difficult" workers."

The compensation plan I give is just an example. The plan that workers vote to approve would likely be different. But it is not based on arbitrary assumptions.

What constitutes physically and mentally difficult work is not arbitrary. And I don't think you can provide evidence that says we need to pay someone more than 10 times more in order to get them to do a job. At 10:1, the top pay would be $1 million and the bottom would be $100k.

The fact that the top is 2.5% is just a function of math. The larger the inequality you have, the smaller the number has to be of people receiving the higher pay.

Do you think you can provide evidence that says unless we pay celebrities and entrepreneurs 20 or 30 or 500 times more than everyone that we won't have as many celebrities or entrepreneurs? I don't think you can.

And do you think workers would vote to substantially lower their own pay so that entrepreneurs and celebrities can make tens of millions or hundreds of millions per year? I don't.

.

"Also, if you use the entire GDP for salary, what happens to re-investment into business growth?"

As explained in my post, investment comes mostly from whatever the natural savings rate is and partly from government.

.

"Do you really think businesses exist in a vacuum?"

Do you really think we should bring back slavery?

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

You were going good there with a reasoned response until you threw in that little slavery nugget.

I also think it borders on criminal the wages top CEO's get in comparison to their workers. However, if you drop their salary down to $450k immediately and they are servicing the debt on their 10 million dollar house, do you really think there will be anything left over for investment? The GDP goes to pay for a lot more than just salary. It goes to funding business also. If you use all of the GDP for salary, business investment will naturally fall, causing a spiraling down of the GDP.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Where is the other 9 trillion dollars coming from?"

I'm not sure why you refuse to read the actual post or comments. The math is all explained and the numbers are linked to the official numbers published by the government at the government's website so you can see they are not just made up.

The government's BEA publishes total income, not the irs.

So let's try this yet again...

See the calculation in paying everyone from $115k to $460k:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662000

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

So you are saying the government's numbers and the NYT are 9 trillion apart? I don't buy that.

Your numbers rely upon an arbitrary statement of what percentage are "top" workers and what percentage are "difficult" workers.

Also, if you use the entire GDP for salary, what happens to re-investment into business growth? Do you really think businesses exist in a vacuum?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"it sounds to me that all you are doing is inflating the money supply"

All we are doing is redistributing existing income. We are not printing new money.

Redistributing existing income does not cause inflation. The increase in the minimum worker worker pay to $115k is fully offset by the decrease in the top earning worker pay to $460k.

See the calculation in paying everyone from $115k to $460k:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662000

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

If you took the 135 million families that average 36 thousand a year and raise them to 115 thousand it will cost approximately 10.6 trillion dollars. Now, let's see what we can redistribute.

If you take the 14,000 families averaging 31 million a year and lower them to 400k it will get you about 430 billion dollars. Add in the 135,000 families below them averaging 3.9 million a year and you get another 472 billion. Now add in the 1.35 million families averaging 717k a year (we will forget for a moment that the stats for this group starts at 386k so they would not get you savings) and you come up with another 400 billion or so.

Where is the other 9 trillion dollars coming from?

Stats taken from the New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/10/30/nyregion/where-the-one-percent-fit-in-the-hierarchy-of-income.html

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Why can't you give details about HOW to accomplish what you seek?"

I completely disagree with your premise. It is ridiculous to say the viability of this idea rests on my ability to tell you how to re-do everyone's contract.

Contracts that have to do with production based on the old system of income will no longer be valid. You cannot enforce a contract that requires someone to do something illegal.

This happens all the time. For example, if the government wanted to make salvia illegal, do you think they would say unfortunately we can't because we would have to figure out how to re-do all the contracts that have to do with salvia?

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

The viability of your idea does rest with the details of how it would be accomplished. That is pretty much true for every idea. Hey, I'd like everyone to make 200,000 dollars a year and have all the prices remain exactly the same. However, there is no practical way to make that happen. If you have to redo all contracts having to to do with production it sounds to me that all you are doing is inflating the money supply. The new minimum wage will be 115k a year but does it do any good if a car costs 150k and a gallon of milk costs $23?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"What about existing long term contracts? Your ideas are simplistic, almost child-like in their level of realism."

Your claim that 50% of Americans must live in or close to poverty and 97% of workers must earn a below average income because you can't figure out how to change a contract is so simple-minded, almost child-like in your ability to solve problems.

You may have to re-do contracts. This isn't rocket science.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

So, all contracts are abrogated through the force of law? It is easy to say something like "You may have to re-do contracts". It is much harder to work out the details.

[-] -1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

abrogate (v.) Look up abrogate at Dictionary.com

1520s, from L. abrogatus, pp. of abrogare "to annul, repeal (a law)," from ab- "away" (see ab-) + rogare "propose a law, request" (see rogation). Used as an adjective in mid-15c. Related: Abrogated; abrogating.

http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=abrogate

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

The money to increase your employee incomes comes from decreasing the incomes of people who make more than what is allowed under this plan. For every 100 workers, 97 will get a pay increase which will be fully offset by 3 getting a pay decrease.

So although your labor costs go up by $1.1 million, somebody else's goes down by $1.1 million. So your rent and capital costs may go down by $1.1 million making your total costs the same. I don't know exactly how it will play out.

But it could very well be that your company's expenses go up. If this plan is implemented, some goods and services will go up in price which will be fully offset by other goods and services coming down in price. Your company could be one of the companies whose prices go up.

If your expenses go up, that means you have to raise your prices. However, raising prices does not mean you will go out of business since all your competitors are in the same boat and they will have to raise their prices as well.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

What about existing long term contracts? If I am obligated to perform a service over the next year that I priced at 100k and now my costs for this job are 1 million. Are you going to have the government abrogate every existing contract? Your ideas are simplistic, almost child-like in their level of realism.

[-] 1 points by aflockofdoofi (-18) 2 years ago

again, whose money are you decreasing? BE SPECIFIC? NAME names of industries who can afford to hsve their products cut in price?

DONT JUST SAY IT, BE ABSOLUTELY CLINICAL IN YOUR THOUGHTS OF THE 3% that can have their profucts cut in value.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"So basically the owners of existing businesses are forced to sell their businesses through the force of law, correct?"

That is not what my comment said. My comment said there will still be privately owned companies. I did not say there will be a law that says you must sell your business.

So basically you are saying poor people must be put in special communities where they die a slow death and slavery should be allowed again?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Competing, individually run firms that must remain financially viable in the market is nothing like "the government". The government is run by elected officials, gets its income from taxes instead of from voluntary consumer purchases in the market, does not need to be financially viable, and has no competition.

I did explain the process of the strike. All workers will stop working. And they will only go back to work once income from all companies is democratically allocated. We will then have no choice but to pass a law that allocates income democratically. Everyone goes back to work just like today with the same job positions and responsibilities. The only difference is the amount of your paycheck.

Current owners will now no longer be able to take an income larger than what the plan allows.

However, this plan does not say every business has to be publicly owned. It only says total income has to be allocated democratically. You can still use your own money to start your own business. But you cannot earn more than what the national plan allows. And since every worker is guaranteed a job at the plan's income levels, you would have to pay those rates when you hire someone or convince someone to take a lower pay to work for you.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

Ok, so a law is passed that income is allocated "democratically". I am a small business owner who runs a small consulting firm of 30 people. Not one of which makes anywhere near your maximum income. I scrape out a living and after taxes bring home a decent salary but after that salary is calculated, the company as an entity basically breaks even. Lets say I make a salary of $160k a year from this business. Lets also say that my 30 employees break down salaries like such:

8 admin and secretarial people making an average of $33k

10 hardware people making an average of 80k

8 programmers making an average of 100k

4 salesmen making an average of 150k

Under your plan my costs go up by the following amounts:

(8 * (115000 - 33000)) + (10 * (115000 - 80000)) + (8 * (115000 - 100000) )

My annual costs go up by $1,126,000 per year meaning I bring home no money and lose over $900,000 per year. How do I stay in business? I can't. Of course I cannot sell the business either because it is a losing proposition. I am screwed. Your plan has bankrupted me and put 31 people out of work.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

So basically the owners of existing businesses are forced to sell their businesses through the force of law, correct?

[-] 1 points by forourfutures (393) 2 years ago

Nice, how do get the authority to do anything?

http://demandthegoodlife.com/

You need to get 50 people in the next 20 days posting on the Article V forum with real strategy for democracy. Then I'll believe you are serious.

http://articlevconvention.org/showthread.php?33-Amendment-By-Layers-Of-Priority-Amendment-Package-Making-CONST.-Intent

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

For the record, demandTheGoodLife.com is part of a game.

The only way to make the proposal here a reality is by workers going on a general strike. Workers produce all the wealth, they should get all the income.

I'm not interested in changing the constitution. That is pointless. The only problem that exists in society is inequality of income. Nearly every social problem stems from it. Unless you fix the inequality, you are not going to fix anything.

There is nothing in the constitution that will prevent workers from going on strike in order to replace capitalism with democracy.

[-] 1 points by forourfutures (393) 2 years ago

It's about enforcing the constitution more than changing it,

"I'm not interested in changing the constitution."

If you need to fix inequality, you need Article V. There is no authority for the people without it. Period.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

The constitution does not need to be changed. The constitution does not say how income must be allocated. There is nothing in my proposal that is unconstitutional.

[-] 1 points by forourfutures (393) 2 years ago

When it does not specify, by default, corporate profit based values rule and the material existence glorified by media. In order to say what equality means in a soclailly meaningful way, you need Article V. There is no other mechanism the people can operate.

Proposing that all wages should be equal won't work in this capitalistic society unless understanding is created first. Free speech is needed to do that.

Your right to free speech is abridged. If you had words needed by every man woman and child on the planet in order to survive, you would not be able to share them or define why they had that value. To change that you need Article V.

Enforcement of the constitution related to countering the abridging of free speech can easily show that simply with that enforcement, the constitution does not need to be changed.

However, enforcement benefits from foresight so amending to be sure that concepts which protect equality can be easily shared is a good idea. Free speech again. Article V is needed.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"There is no other mechanism the people can operate"

Yes there is. The strike. That is where most worker gains have come from, not from the constitution.

If every worker was given the option of their current working deal or to participate in a strike that would get them at least $115k or $230k if they worked a difficult job and a 0% mortgage, the overwhelming majority would go on strike and the capitalist economy would come to an end a few days after.

The world could literally change in less than a month.

That will never happen with some kind of constitution amendment.

[-] 1 points by forourfutures (393) 2 years ago

But, . . . you would need free speech to convince all those workers to do such a thing. With democracy you only need to convince a majority. Then once the constitution of the republic is perfected a little more, then deal with common survival issue. Now, really, sustainability.

Got to get the fox out of the hen house.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

We do have free speech. I will not get locked up for asking my fellow workers to participate in a strike for a deal that will make the minimum wage $115k, reduce the work week to 20 hours and give you access to a 100% mortgage for 0% interest.

[-] 1 points by Rael (176) 2 years ago

So, how's it working for you?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I haven't got arrested yet and I don't think I ever will.

[-] 1 points by forourfutures (393) 2 years ago

I meant ALL the workers, not just your "fellow" workers.

ALL of them is what you need and you might get to 50 of them. Public access TV is a joke. PBS is a joke. NPR is a joke. Media will not share meaningtful truths needed to defend the constitution.

What you mean is we do not have a totally facist dictatorship . . . yet.

Simply put, Americans have no place to make speech vital to survival and defense of the constitution heard and understood.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I don't understand what you are trying to say. Are you saying the constitution should be changed so that everyone gets the ability to advertise their voice for free?

[-] 1 points by forourfutures (393) 2 years ago

No. Some speech is vital to all of us. We should know the difference and we need to in order to be democratic.

What is proposed is to revise the first amendment so that citizens that are working to share information vital to all of us, that which defends the constitution is so, can actually do so. What is proposed is that a manageable sized group of people for one person, over say a years time, maybe up to 200, would sign a petition and provide a written statement in their own words describing how the particular information would concern all citizens and substantially effect their lives, and everyones, or rights if, not understood for purposes of opinion forming in democratic action.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You didn't finish your comment!

So I get 200 people to sign a petition that says what I have to say is vitally important. Then what?

[-] 1 points by forourfutures (393) 2 years ago

Oh, yea, sorry, my bad. I had to go back and read:) - There's a bunch of pages that mention it. Here is the one.

http://algoxy.com/poly/meaning_of_free_speech.html

The petition is taken to a state legislator who has the duty and authority under the federal constitution to order the top television media in the state, also broadcasting nationally, to provide primetime broadcast scheduling, not just once, and production funding to see that the product program meets standards the public are used to so that they watch.

They could challenge it if they could prove it was not factual. Such challenge would not be valid if any violations of law led to the inability of the petitioners to prove their points.

If the media corporations refuse the state legislator has the authority and duty to revoke their corporate status in the state, or shut them down. The alternative is loss of the constitution through public ignorance, which is now rampant because of the abridging of free speech. Entertainment and distraction has gone way too far in this country.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I would think that so many people have so much to say that this law would wind up turning every network into a 24/7 broadcast of everyone's ideas. Isn't this idea unworkable?

[Removed]

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

One is an economic system the other is a political system.

Replace a pencil with an orange? At least stick with tools that are for the same purpose. If this is a joke, it is too long to bother reading.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

If you took the time to read, you might learn something. You might learn how democracy is just a system where everyone has equal power. It can be used to run a government, run a family, run a business, deciding what to make for dinner or run an entire economy.

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

In the marketplace of ideas it isn't an option for you to issue assignments. If I were to read the entire library of Congress I would learn a great many things. But I am unwilling and unable to attempt to accomplish that. Since I must be selective, I rule out sources who present themselves as naive or foolish. Democracy is an option for all of the purposes you mention but one. An economy.

The market is speaking to you.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I can assure you my proposal is a lot shorter than reading the entire library of congress.

There is nothing about an economy that prevents us from limiting differences in income to just what is needed to get people to do difficult or undesirable work and giving their maximum effort. And doing that would make it democratic.

Just read this comment and you will have a better understanding of what is meant by democracy:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-663128

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

My assessment was obviously correct.

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I don't know what you mean by that.

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

I rule out sources who present themselves as naive or foolish.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Your strategy to rule out an idea, that takes 5 minutes to read, as naive or foolish before you have actually read the idea might be naive or foolish.

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

On the other hand, a quick scan of the comments of folks I have come to trust, confirmed my suspicions. This would be a stochastic method leading to the desired result with little effort.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Your method of learning the validity of some idea by reading people's comments instead of reading the actual idea is moronic.

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

It obviously works, which is more than you can say for your democratic economic system. Read the posts.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

It obviously doesn't work. Read the responses. Many of the posts are by libertarian trolls who do not understand what GDP, income or inflation are. They don't understand basic, fundamental economic concepts.

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 2 years ago

Yeah, I learned mine from Allen Greenspan. He was just as wrong as the rest of the Libertarian trolls you refer to.

I am equally enthralled with pure socialism. So count me out re the revolution.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Part 1 of 2

THE PROBLEM IS INEQUALITY

The cause of nearly every problem people have in society is lack of income. That is it.

Lack of income is what causes all the problems with housing, education, health care, poverty, financial struggle, constant worrying about how to pay the bills, low standard of living, gangs, most crimes, unemployment, working too many hours, working at a job you hate, working too many hours at a job you hate, misery, hopelessness, boredom, recessions, depressions, foreclosures.

And the only reason why people lack income is because we have an economic system that allocates income very, very unequally. It is not because we don't have enough income or enough resources to go around.

For example, if we allocated income equally, everyone would get paid $135,000 per year. So there is more than enough income to not just end poverty, to not just end financial struggle, but to actually end the entire middle class and make everyone in society wealthy.

If we want to eliminate nearly every problem that exists in society, if we want to make society civil and humane, all we have to do is simply adopt an economic system that allocates income more equally.

Let's be clear. Whether we have an economic system that allocates income equally or unequally is a choice. We can choose to have an unequal system and the vast misery and struggle that comes with it. Or we can choose to have a more equal system so that society works well for everyone without exception.

There is no law of economics or nature that says we must have inequality. Although there is an unrelentless amount of propaganda from the people who benefit from inequality that says equality does not work, facts and science say the exact opposite. The economy would be more productive, more innovative, and more dynamic and society would have less crime and higher well-being if we had equality.

Capitalism is a system that maximizes inequality. It is the reason for nearly all the problems that exist. But what is meant by capitalism here is the private ownership of the economy and using that ownership or your bargaining power to take as much of the available income as possible.

.

EQUALITY WORKS, INEQUALITY DOES NOT

Having an economic system where people can take as large a share of the available income as possible does not improve our economy, it damages it. All it does is just increase the amount of people who are broke. When too much income is concentrated in the hands of too few people, there isn't enough income left over for everyone else.

What is important to understand about economics is that all our wealth and progress has come from science, not capitalism.

And the incentive to do science comes not just from a love of science and invention but from being paid to do science and in some cases being paid directly based on your performance. The incentive to do science does not come from capitalism.

And the incentive to always produce what consumers demand, for a price they are willing to pay, comes from allocating goods and services in a market where firms are required to remain financially viable. Accountability to consumers does not come from capitalism.

And the incentive for producers to constantly improve what they offer and deliver the service and quality consumers expect comes from allocating goods and services in a market where participants must compete for business and are financially rewarded for their success. Constant innovation does not come from capitalism.

The only thing capitalism does is just allocate our wealth unequally. Like Al Capone said, capitalism is a thug system where you take as much as you can and to hell with everyone else.

Despite the fact that we have the resources and technology to produce a near unlimited amount of anything, capitalism's thug system has left:

  • ONE HALF of all Americans near or below poverty
  • 97% of all workers earning a below average income (3)
  • 50% of all wage earners making less than $26k
  • 18% of the entire workforce unable to get a full time job
  • 52 million without health insurance
  • and 55% of all workers wasting their lives doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology (2)

Capitalism is a backwards, medieval, barbaric, cruel, uncivilized system that has no place in the modern, democratic world.

People deserve a government of the people, by the people, and for the people; and they also deserve an economy of the people, by the people, and for the people.

Adam Smith, an important Enlightenment Era thinker and author of the very first economics textbook, The Wealth of Nations, advocated what is now called capitalism because he thought an economic system with perfect liberty would lead to perfect equality of outcome.

But it is now 250 years later and society is nowhere near equality, nor is it headed in that direction. Capitalism, like a monarchy, is a system that will only ever work well for a privileged few.

Click on this comment to read part 2:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-661383

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

(sources for all claims and data are at the end of this comment)

Part 2 of 2

DEMOCRACY IS THE SOLUTION

In order to achieve the Enlightenment ideal of equality, we need more than just public, democratic ownership of the government. We also need public, democratic ownership of the economy.

What has now become obvious is that there are only two types of societies. Democratic societies, where economic power rests with everyone equally. And Undemocratic societies, where economic power is unequal.

Notice it did not say political power. That is because political power does not matter. Your political power is determined by your economic power. Whoever has the economic power, has the political power.

You cannot have equal political power if you do not have equal economic power. That is why democracy in America is a sham. The more money you have, the more you are able to control what the "mainstream" dialogue is within the media, control what politicians run for office, control what laws get passed and control how you are treated by the legal system itself. America has a very unequal economic system and because of that, the country is ruled by a small group of wealthy people. It is not a democracy.

So what is proposed here is to replace capitalism, a system of maximum inequality, with democracy, a system of equality.

Democracy is a Greek word. But it is not a Greek word for "voting" or "mob rule" or "majority wins". It is Greek for "people power". It means power rests with everyone equally.

So in order to have a democratic society, a society where power rests with everyone equally, everyone must have equal economic power.

.

HOW A DEMOCRACTIC ECONOMY WORKS

Your income determines how much economic power you have. However, that does not mean income has to be allocated equally, because income is also used as an incentive to get people to do difficult work and give their maximum effort. So income must be allocated in a way that is both democratic and maintains its ability to continue to perform as an effective incentive.

In order to do that, in order to make the economy both democratic and effective, income must be allocated so that differences in income are limited to just what is necessary to get people to do difficult or undesirable work and to get people to give their maximum effort.

We would use the political process to filter out reasonable, national compensation proposals where differences in income are legally required to be limited to just what our best scientific evidence says is necessary to be an effective incentive and then the worker population votes directly on its approval in a national vote. Perhaps the national pay plan can be voted on every 4 years.

If we determined that paying top earners 4 times more than bottom earners is enough incentive and this income distribution plan was democratically approved, that would enable us to pay $460,000 per year to the top 2.5% of all workers; $230,000 per year to the 12.3 million workers who do the mentally or physically difficult work of science, computers, engineering, medicine, construction, mining, and farming; and $115,000 to everyone else.

Limiting inequality of income in this way, will make society fully democratic.

In order to have full control over the allocation of income, the businesses in the economy must be democratically owned and controlled. So that means all businesses would have to be publicly financed. This does not mean government does the investing or runs the businesses. Investing will still be done by individually run banks, and they will still invest in entrepreneurs who launch individually run companies. It just means the funds they use will be public funds which come from whatever the natural savings rate is in the economy.

Making just those two changes - publicly financing all businesses and allocating their income democratically - enables us to retain all the features of our current economy that make it perform well as a consumer responsive, decentralized, dynamic, efficient system of innovation and progress, while ensuring that the system is always working well for everyone.

But we can still do better. In a democratic economic system, not only do we have democratic control over how much income your job pays, we also now have democratic control over how many hours that job requires you to work each week.

As you will learn, 55% of all the jobs we do can be automated with existing technology. So by making a deliberate effort to immediately automate those jobs, we can reduce the work week to just 20 hours.

And since we now have democratic control over the allocation of income, we can now pay students to attend school. Going to school is work, it is not a consumption item. It is part of the training you need to perform at your job, so you should get paid to do it.

This would no longer make it impractical for adults and career changers to go to school because they will still have an income to take care of themselves and their family.

And you know what our current economic system has taught us? That paying people an income to perform is an incredibly successful incentive. So we should begin paying students at the high school level. We don't expect young adults to work for free. We shouldn't expect them to train for that work for free either.

If we paid students an income based on how well they perform in school, drop out rates would plummet. Kids want nice clothes, a fancy car, and the latest phone, game, computer and electronic gadgets. If they can have all of that so long as they do their school work, graduation rates would approach 100%.

This can all be paid for with a small sales tax on businesses so each business can share in the cost of training their future employees.

And since all financing now comes from public funds, it is now no longer necessary to charge an interest rate on loans. That means we can guarantee 100% financing at 0% interest to everyone who wants a home. Eliminating mortgage interest will cut your monthly house payment in half.

And since we now have democratic control over financing and investment, we can now guarantee everyone employment. It will be the end of recessions and the business cycle because we can always invest whatever amount is needed to employ everyone who wants a job.

And lastly, democratic control means we can now make sure all our individually run and competing businesses are always working towards our larger, democratically established goals. Companies can be subject to democratically organized bodies at the industry and national level that set broad, general policies such as fast tracking the switch to cleaner energy or updating our transportation system with high speed rail or directing our automation efforts to automate jobs with the highest workers so we can free people from menial toil as quickly as possible.

.

HOW TO REPLACE CAPITALISM WITH DEMOCRACY

The biggest challenge in all of this, of course, is how to change the system.

One way to do it is with a general strike. The middle class was built by workers organizing and using the strike when their demands for improved working conditions were not being met.

It has brought them the 40-hour work week, vacation time, overtime, sick leave, worker safety, breaks and countless other improvements, so it is a proven and effective method for social change.

If workers organize and collectively decide that they will only work for companies that are democratically owned and whose total income is democratically allocated, so society works well for everyone, the economy will have no choice but to change.

Unlike with elections, workers organizing and striking can bring about immediate and significant changes.

It obviously takes a lot of workers willing to strike in order to change an economic system, but benefits like raising the minimum income to $115k and reducing the work week to 20 hours is a deal that enough workers may find worth striking for.

HOW THE $115k - $460k INCOMES WERE CALCULATED:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662000

HOW TO REDUCE THE WORK WEEK TO 20 HOURS:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662013

[-] 6 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

HOW THE $115k - $460k INCOMES WERE CALCULATED

The democratic sector will work largely the same way as the current economy works now where we have individually run firms that compete for customers in the market. All the features of our current economy that make it perform well as a consumer responsive, decentralized, dynamic, efficient system of innovation and progress remains in place.

The difference is in how investment is allocated in the economy and how income is allocated in the economy.

How investment is allocated is explained here. How income is allocated is explained in this comment.

The market would continue to be used to allocate goods and services. However, it would no longer be used to allocate income. Income determines standard of living, your freedom and your political power. The market shouldn't be used to allocate any of that. It is inhumane to treat people like commodities and heads of cattle. Instead, income is allocated democratically.

Income will be allocated according to two simple rules that would be enforced by law:

1) The first rule is that 100% of the income is paid to workers only. No income is paid to anyone for investing their savings. In order to get paid an income, you must work (except for disability and pension).

In the capitalist sector, only half the income produced by workers is paid to workers. The other half is paid to a small group of owners of capital.

The democratic sector won't have investors like Mitt Romney who get paid $20 million every year, even though he doesn't work a single day, simply because he made a lucky bet a couple of decades ago. Workers produce that $20 million every year, not Mitt Romney, and it is unfair to pay that $20 million to Mitt Romney that workers are producing.

Investing is gambling. The economy should not be used as a casino. It should be used as a system where you get paid for doing the work necessary to produce the goods and services consumers want.

GDP, the total price of all the goods and services we produce each year, determines how much income is available to pay out to workers. If we produce $14.5 trillion in goods and services, we obviously need to pay out $14.5 trillion in income to buy all those goods and services. So $14.5 trillion is the total amount of income we have available to pay out to all workers.

2) The second rule is that $14.5 trillion is divided among the workers based on how hard they work. In order for one worker to get paid more than another, they have to produce more. In order to produce more, they have to work harder. Working harder means they have to either do physically or mentally difficult work or perform better in a performance based job.

In the capitalist sector, income is allocated among workers based on how scarce they are. It is why athletes, movie stars and reality show train wrecks get paid several hundred times more than brain surgeons.

Instead, in the democratic sector, differences in income will be limited by law to only what is necessary to get people to do hard jobs and to give their maximum performance in performance based jobs. Since the whole purpose of income is to be an incentive to work and work hard, those are the only two legitimate economic reasons for paying one worker more than another.

.

Deciding which jobs are hard, deciding how much more we need to pay workers to get them to do hard jobs, deciding what jobs are performance based, and deciding how much more we need to pay workers in order to get their maximum performance in those performance based jobs is not exactly black and white. So there will be three checks and balances in order to make sure income is allocated the way it is supposed to.

1) The first check is the democratic process. Workers must approve the compensation plan. We would use the political process to filter out reasonable, national compensation proposals and then the worker population votes directly on its approval in a national vote every few years.

This could work by each of the Bureau of Labor Statistic's few hundred job categories electing a delegate to serve on a Compensation Plan Congress. They would negotiate a compensation plan. And then the workers can cast a confidence vote directly on it. If a certain percentage of workers approve the plan, it goes into effect.

2) The second check is the labor market results. If there is a shortage of workers for a particular job and the reason why is because it does not pay enough, the pay for that job will be raised.

3) The third check is the legal process. The law governing compensation will be that differences in income are limited to only what is necessary to get people to do hard jobs and to give their maximum effort in performance based jobs. If the first two checks fail, you can always bring a lawsuit for a judge to rule on.

.

It it worth mentioning here how performance based pay would be allocated. As explained in the section on investing, we will no longer have private owners of companies. The function that owners perform will now be done by democratic bodies. Each industry will be governed by democratic bodies elected by workers and consumers of those industries. These bodies will carry out the functions that owners, boards of directors and trade associations carry out today.

One of those functions will be the allocation of performance based pay. A certain percentage of income will be used to pay certain jobs bonuses based on performance as explained below. An example is executive pay. The democratic body would look at the financial performance of all the companies in their industry and pay the highest bonuses to the executives of the companies that performed the best.

.

We can't predict what the exact final plan will be. But what we can predict is that you will not come up with any valid scientific study that says we need to pay people much more than twice the amount as everyone else in order to get them to do hard jobs or that we need to pay people much more than four times the amount as everyone else in order to get them to give their maximum effort.

You do not have to pay someone 50,000 times more income in order to get them to build a social networking website or a cell phone. In fact, we know you don't even have to pay people anything at all when you see all the free open source software and maker faire inventions.

We also know that studies show the general public wants equality, not inequality. So they will never vote to lower their own income in order to give movie actors or Kim Kardashian or athletes or bankers or anyone else the ability to earn, say, 50 times what they make, let alone 50,000 times.

So for the sake of example, let's make the following reasonable assumptions to see what this all adds up to for workers:

  • The 12.3 million workers who work in the physically and mentally difficult fields of science, computers, engineering, medicine, construction, mining, and farming qualified as hard jobs
  • We needed to pay workers twice the income to get them to do these hard jobs
  • We needed to pay workers four times as much to the top performers in performance based jobs
  • 2.5% of jobs were paid this performance bonus

If this income distribution plan was democratically approved, that would enable us to pay $460,000 per year to the top 2.5% of all workers, $230,000 per year to the workers of hard jobs and $115,000 per year to everyone else.

If, for example, we voted on a plan to pay the top performers 10 times more, they would get paid $1 million per year and the bottom earners would drop to $100,000 per year.

Below is how those incomes were calculated.

.

In 2010, we produced $14.5 trillion in total income:

http://www.bea.gov/iTable/iTableHtml.cfm?reqid=9&step=3&isuri=1&910=X&911=0&903=51&904=2010&905=2010&906=A

And we worked a total of 222,736 million hours:

http://www.bea.gov/iTable/iTableHtml.cfm?reqid=9&step=3&isuri=1&910=X&911=0&903=212&904=2010&905=2010&906=Q

.

Cost of Workers Who Got The Performance Bonus: $1.231 trillion

$460k is $221.15 per hour.

They make up 2.5% of the total labor.

$1.231 trillion = $221.15 * 2.5% * 222,736 million hours

.

Cost of Workers Who Do Hard Jobs: $2.332 trillion

$230k is $110.57 per hour.

These 12.3 million workers make up 9.47% of the total labor.

$2.332 trillion = $110.57 * 9.47% * 222,736 million hours

.

Cost of The Rest of the Workers: $10.872 trillion

$115k is $55.28 per hour.

They make up 88.3% of the total labor (88.3 = 100 - 2.5 - 9.47).

$10.872 trillion = $55.28 * 88.3% * 222,736 million hours

.

Total Pay

~$14.5 trillion = $10.872 trillion + $2.332 trillion + $1.231 trillion

So when you pay everyone from $115k to $460k as described in this plan, you will pay out a total income of $14.5 trillion which is equal to the $14.5 trillion in income paid out in 2010.

[-] 6 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

97% OF WORKERS MAKE A BELOW AVERAGE INCOME

Total income: $14.5 trillion

http://www.bea.gov/iTable/iTableHtml.cfm?reqid=9&step=3&isuri=1&910=X&911=0&903=51&904=2010&905=2010&906=A

Divided by total hours worked: 222,736 million hours

http://www.bea.gov/iTable/iTableHtml.cfm?reqid=9&step=3&isuri=1&910=X&911=0&903=212&904=2010&905=2010&906=Q

Gives you the average income per hour worked of $65. Multiply that by 40 hours, 52 weeks and you get the $135k average income per full time worker. That is what every worker would make if 100% of our income was paid out to workers equally.

97% of all workers make less than this amount.

http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/cpstables/032011/perinc/new11_000.htm

So as incredible as it sounds, 97% of all workers actually make a below average income. This demonstrates just how unfair our capitalist system is and just how bad a deal workers are getting.

97% of all workers would get an increase in income, so most if not all of them should be motivated to strike for a democratic system.

The government does not report average income per hour for all employees. But the BLS does report worker productivity per hour which is a nearly identical number.

Worker productivity is total income, minus items such as rent since worker productivity has no impact on rent, divided by total hours worked. Since the difference between worker productivity and average worker income is that worker productivity does not include rent in its total income, worker productivity will be slightly lower than the average worker income number.

This chart compares worker productivity per hour for different countries. Norway is number 1 by a large margin:

http://www.bls.gov/ilc/intl_gdp_capita_gdp_hour.htm#chart04

If Norway adopted a democratic system as illustrated here, they would be able to pay their workers from $144k to $575k per year.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Norway: GDP (PPP) 2011 estimate - Total $265.911 billion[4] - Per capita $53,470[4] GDP (nominal) 2011 estimate - Total $483.650 billion[4] - Per capita $97,254[4]

vs South Korea (mentioned in the BLS chart): GDP (PPP) 2011 estimate - Total $1.556 trillion[3] (12th) - Per capita $31,753[3] (26th) GDP (nominal) 2011 estimate - Total $1.163 trillion[3] (15th) - Per capita $23,749

(it's all pretty irrelevant anyway)

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

How are the national accounts and their economic data irrelevant?

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

I am not sure why you brought it up either, just thought I would point out that saying that "Norway's worker productivity is the highest" is somewhat misleading.

I am actually not sure where you get the idea that worker productivity is "total income, minus items such as rent since worker productivity has no impact on rent, divided by total hours worked." From my URL history, here is a good chart:

http://www.neweconomictimes.com/?p=33

Another good chart from my history:

http://rortybomb.wordpress.com/2011/03/17/epi-on-lagging-wages-rising-productivity/

The last chart in this one shows how from 1950, productivity was linked somewhat well with wages until about 1980, which was around when tax rates on the rich went down. The usual definition of worker productivity is not "total income minus rent", unless perhaps you meant income of a business and not of workers.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"I am not sure why you brought it up either"

You cannot analyze an economy unless you have the national accounts data.

.

"just thought I would point out that saying that "Norway's worker productivity is the highest" is somewhat misleading."

Norway productivity is $80 per hour which is the highest in the world. These are indisputable facts. What is misleading about that?

.

"I am actually not sure where you get the idea that worker productivity is 'total income, minus items such as rent since worker productivity has no impact on rent, divided by total hours worked.'"

The BLS defines what labor productivity is. You can look under their labor productivity section to read the full description of how they calculate productivity.

The reason why rent is subtracted out of GDP when computing productivity is because the value of rent has nothing to do with how productive labor is.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Norway productivity is $80 per hour which is the highest in the world. These are indisputable facts. What is misleading about that?

Are you familiar with the difference between nominal income and actual purchasing power? The difference is the strength of a currency which mostly has to do with goods that can or cannot be easily transported or sold to another country (such as "the price of a haircut").

I misread your statement tho, I thought you said how are national accounts and their economic data relevant, not how are they irrelevant. In response to that second question, I brought up South Korea because it's mentioned on the BLS chart of nominal GDP per worker which you linked to for reasons I still don't understand. Some countries (that tend to be small countries with natural resources or policies that attract skilled workers from other countries) have higher productivity than the US; so what?

BLS definition of labor productivity:

Labor productivity refers to the relationship between output and the labor time used in generating that output. It is the ratio of output per hour.

Doesn't mention rent.

However, if by "average income per worker" you meant "income to the business" better known as revenues, then I can see why you would subtract rent before calculating productivity. A nice statistic:

"the revenue per employee at S.&P. 500 companies increased from $378,000 in 2007 to $420,000 in 2011."

Again, people are not going to suddenly decide to vote to take away the 1%'s money and give it to everyone else, because people like the idea of being rewarded for hard work and generally still have unfavorable opinions of socialism or communism. Working less IS the only realistic way for unemployment or income inequality to be reduced.

If you are poor, it's because you want to be or because you're stupid

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"it's mentioned on the BLS chart of nominal GDP per worker which you linked to for reasons I still don't understand"

It is mentioned in the comment where I say the average income in this country is $135,000 per year and 97% of all workers make less than average. Average worker income is total income divided by total hours worked. The govt publishes total income (GDP) and total hours worked. But they do not divide those numbers and publish it as average worker income.

However, the govt does publish worker productivity which is very close to average income. That is why I link to the worker productivity number. And the difference between average income and worker productivity is the govt takes things like rent out of GDP then divides that number by total hours worked when computing worker productivity.

.

"BLS definition of labor productivity...Doesn't mention rent."

If you read beyond that very simple description, if you read the section which details how they actually compute the number, you will see that they take rent out of GDP before dividing it by total hours worked.

.

"However, if by "average income per worker" you meant "income to the business" better known as revenues, then I can see why you would subtract rent before calculating productivity"

Average income is calculated by taking GDP (which is the total income that our country produces from all sources, including wages, profit, rent and interest) and dividing it by total hours worked.

.

"Again, people are not going to suddenly decide to vote to take away the 1%'s money and give it to everyone else, because people like the idea of being rewarded for hard work"

Our current system does not allocate income by hard work. Some people make 50,000 times more income than others. They don't work 50,000 times harder.

What I advocate is that we actually allocate income by hard work.

Since the only economic reason for paying one person more than another is to get people to work hard, the only fair way to allocate income is to limit differences to only what is necessary to get them to do difficult work and give their maximum effort.

Every worker in America in 2012 should be wealthy. Worker productivity in this country is $65 per hour which means if everyone was paid equally, full-time workers would get paid $135,000 per year.

If we allocated income based on hard work, every worker would get paid closer to the $65 per hour they produce. For example, if we determined that paying the top earners 4 times more than the bottom earners was enough incentive to motivate people to work hard, we would be able to pay every worker from $115k to $460k per year. That would make every worker wealthy and put an end to nearly every social problem we have.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

It is mentioned in the comment where I say the average income in this country is $135,000 per year and 97% of all workers make less than average. Average worker income is total income divided by total hours worked.

That gives you an hourly rate, not a yearly amount. (Might as well just use the BLS term of "GDP per hour worked" instead of calling it "average worker income".)

The 97% statistic, which might be inaccurate if you're calculating it yourself using $135k (since you just multiply "GDP per hour worked" by full-time work, despite 40 million part time workers) might convince some people to do something. My apologies though for the confusion over the term "average worker income".

I am not sure if "GDP per hour worked" is supposed to include rent; if it does, then I guess it might be useful to use a term that excludes rent.

For the last part, you're still ignoring basic economics: raising the minimum wage does not lead to full employment because it doesn't guarantee that people are willing to pay enough, or even anything, for the "hard work" people are willing to do. 1 million people applied to McDonald's job fair last year for just 50,000 openings. You describe an 'ideal state' of lower income inequality, without supplying a solution for how to reach that state while also lowering unemployment.

People seem to dislike the "If you're poor" phrasing so I'll link another explanation: http://jobcreationplan.blogspot.com/2012/04/low-consumer-demand-and-inefficiency.html

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"You describe an 'ideal state' of lower income inequality, without supplying a solution for how to reach that state while also lowering unemployment."

I'm not sure if you read the actual post, but it is all described in the post. The central bank will always provide enough investment money to maintain full employment. And differences in income are limited by law to only what is necessary to get people to do difficult jobs and give their maximum effort. And the final national compensation plan must be approved by a national vote by all workers.

Read the post.

[-] 5 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

HOW TO REDUCE THE WORK WEEK TO 20 HOURS

The goal of a democratic society is to use the methods of science to maximize everyone's freedom to live whatever lifestyle they want.

As pointed out here, in order to maximize freedom, in order to give people the time to freely live the life they want, we must minimize the need for people to do involuntary labor by automating every job that people have no interest in doing.

As you'll see below, 55% of all the jobs we do can be automated with existing technology. We don't need people to be waiters or office clerks or drivers or cashiers or salespeople any more. We have the ability to automate all those tasks.

Wasting a human life, the most sophisticated piece of machinery in the universe, on menial tasks that people have no interest in doing like moving a plate of food from one end of the room to the other, all day, is a criminal waste of the most valuable resource we have.

If we made a deliberate effort to automate every job possible, and automated 55% of jobs, we could cut the work week in half. The only work left for people to do would be the kind of fun activities that you would be doing if you didn't have a job to go to. There would be no difference between work and play.

Here is how the 55% was calculated. They are based on the employment numbers published by the BLS: http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_nat.htm

There are about 135 million people who work. Here is a list of Jobs that can be automated with existing technology and the number of people who are employed in them:

  1. Office and Admin support (19.2 million) These are low level employees who do routine tasks. Most can be automated today. But the process will be much easier in a democratic system where companies are no longer privately owned and so can share an integrated infrastructure. If we had standards for sharing all data and documents as well as easy access to all business data in a central location you would not need armies of employees to shuffle paper.

  2. Sales (16.2 million) Most sales can be done over the internet. And automated checkouts can replace all cashiers in physical stores.

  3. Management (15.8 million) Most of these management jobs are actually sales managers which are no longer necessary since we no longer have sales people.

  4. Transportation (8.8 million) We already have the tech for driverless cars and trucks. All that is needed is a government effort to create the infrastructure that makes driverless cars work on our roads.

  5. Food prep and related (7.8 million) These are mostly people who work in restaurants. Industrial robots can automate any chef. There are already companies that developed robots that can cook hundreds of chinese dishes for an automatd chinese food restaurant. And moving a plate of food from the kitchen to a table does not require a human being or advanced technology.

  6. Business and Financial Operations (6.2 million) These are accountants (which will no longer be needed because in an integrated, democratic economy, banking will be fully digital which will enable you to categorize sales and expenses digitally as they happen), loan officers (extending credit in a completely digital environment can be fully automated), and retail purchasers (retail is largely obsolete with the internet).

  7. Buildings and Ground Maintenance (5.4 million) We already have automated mowers, blowers, rakers, window cleaners, vacuum cleaners, etc. so most of these jobs can be automated.

They amount to about 75 million jobs that people currently do that can be automated today. It makes up about 55% of the total work we do.

[Removed]

[-] 0 points by Perspect1ve (-107) 2 years ago

Are you that stupid naturally or have you had to work at it hard all your life?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Peter Joseph wants to replace democracy with unelected scientists centrally planning all of society. Not only would a modern, educated population never go for such a proposal, it is an impossibly inefficient way to organize a society.

He also mischaracterizes what democracy is by claiming it is a dumb, uniformed public making all the decisions. That is not how democracy works or what its purpose is.

Democracy is a Greek word. But it is not a Greek word for "voting" or "mob rule" or "majority wins". It is Greek for "people power". It means power rests with everyone equally. And a modern liberal democracy means a society based on equal political power and equal freedom.

Since everything you do in society requires money, your income determines how much political power you have and determines how much freedom you have.

A person with $1 billion has 50,000 times more power than a person with $20,000 to get someone elected to government or to lobby government to their cause or to use the media to lobby the public to their cause. And they have 50,000 times more freedom to live how they want - such as to live in whatever house or neighborhood they want, to drive any car they want, to attend any school they want, to get any medical treatment they want, to pursue any hobby they want, to travel to any place they want or to work any job they want.

A society where some have 50,000 times more political power and freedom than others is not democratic.

In order to have democracy, a society where power rests with everyone equally, income must rest with everyone equally. But income is also used as an incentive to get people to do difficult work and give their maximum effort.

So the only way to have a society that is democratic and the only way to also have an economy that works well, is to have a system where differences in income are limited by law to just what is necessary to get people to do difficult work and to get people to give their maximum effort.

[-] 0 points by rickMoss (435) 2 years ago

I love your plan and your heart is in the right place but you are making suggestions that are impossible. You can't make everybody rich. The planet does not have the resources and we're already at a tipping point where most of the people are poor. Technology will mitigate most of the problems. Then there is this big thing called energy. Can you imagine how much energy all the newly rich people would attempt to use. You will have a lot of rich people that our resource poor. Nothing would change because paper money means nothing. The resource is what matters. And what about the billions of people in china and India. They will won't to be rich also. We have huge issues like global warming and peak oil also. I would love to make everybody rich and just chill out for the rest of our lives. But it ain't going to happen like that. We have one finite planet. That's it. I know you mean well because it looks like you take the time to answer a lot of questions. But raising expectations to this level will make things worse. They will hang you by your thumbs then gut you. I'm doing you a favor. I'm an engineer by trade. We can do a lot with science and technology but this plan is loony. No disrespect intended but I'm sure you will take it that way. I commend you on your effort.

FIGHT THE CAUSE - NOT THE SYMPTOM

OsiXs (More Power and Technology to the People!)

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"You can't make everybody rich. The planet does not have the resources"

My plan does not require us to increase the amount of resources we produce in order to make everyone wealthy. We can make everyone wealthy by simply allocating our EXISTING production more fairly.

The incomes I cite are based on the GDP in 2010, it is not based on having to increase the GDP.

.

"And what about the billions of people in china and India. They will won't to be rich also."

All our materials come from the Earth's crust which spans the entire globe and is 30 miles thick. We have literally only scratched the surface. We have plenty of resources. And there is enough sunlight to give us tens of thousands of times the energy we currently use.

As they develop their countries, their wealth will increase. And if they follow the economic model described in this post, every person in those countries will share in that wealth.

.

"We have one finite planet"

No we don't. All the materials on the planet can be recycled forever. We can grow food on the planet for as long as the planet exists. And sunlight will constantly hit the planet for as long as the planet exists.

Plus the solar system is filled with resources.

.

"this plan is loony"

You are going to have to come up with a lot better arguments than the ones you gave in order to make your loony claim credible.

.

"FIGHT THE CAUSE - NOT THE SYMPTOM"

The root cause of nearly every problem in society is lack of income. And people only lack income because a few at the top unfairly take so much of the available income that there isn't enough left over for everyone else.

What do you think the cause is?

[-] 0 points by rickMoss (435) 2 years ago

I agree with what you are trying to do. It is the right thing and the right direction. I just don't agree on all the out comes and that is ok. Because the real point is that we are both heading in the same direction. But it won't mean a hill of beans unless we have a way to make all these things happen. We are putting the cart before the horse. Let's talk NeXus. How do we make this happen because otherwise we are wasting our time. And time is of the essence.

How do you propose to make all these things happen. OsiXs woke me up. The only way this is going to happen is to free the people so they can make the choice to choose all these things that we would both like them to have.

It's called the Nuclear option and for good reason. It's basically away to move our republic to a real democracy (a direct democracy) so the people will have the power to choose the initiatives that you've listed.

My goal is to educate the people that they have a "nuclear option" that was left to them by the founder fathers. Once enough people learn they have the choice, the power and the right to get rid of this (republic) old form of government, they will choose it or we will simply perish.

Here is the "nuclear option" in the declaration of independence:

“that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness…”

You can find the details in common sense 3.1

U.S. Citizens Read “Common Sense 3.1” at ( http://revolution2.osixs.org )

Non U.S. Citizens Read “Common Sense 3.2” at ( http://SaveTheWorldNow.osixs.org )

Without a nexus, all this talk is just pie in the sky. Lets get to point B first, then we can talk and plan for point C.

VOTE for the "NUCLEAR OPTION": http://www.osixs.org/Vote.aspx

FIGHT THE CAUSE - NOT THE SYMPTOM

OsiXs (Revolution 2.0 - The Smart Revolution)

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"we are both heading in the same direction"

Are we? I still don't know what outcome you are trying to accomplish!

I want an economy where we maximize wealth and minimize involuntary, undesirable work. And I want income to be allocated fairly, which means based on how hard you work, by limiting differences in income by law to only what is necessary to get people to work hard so that there is enough income to go around for everyone and make everyone wealthy.

Is that the outcome you want?

.

"How do you propose to make all these things happen"

By forming a single worker union.

Income is allocated based on bargaining power. The average worker has no bargaining power because they can be easily replaced with someone else who is willing to work for less money. So they get paid the bare minimum. People such as doctors or Tom Cruise or Derek Jeter cannot be easily replaced. So they command significant bargaining power and they use that bargaining power to take up to 10-figure incomes.

By organizing ordinary workers into a single union, they will command the same bargaining power as a Tom Cruise or Derek Jeter. If most workers joined this union, business would have no choice but to meet worker demands, just like they meet Cruise's or Jeter's demands, because if they didn't meet the demand, they would have no workers to employ and their business would go under.

And we would demand everything listed in this post.

In order for this to be a success, we obviously have to get enough workers to join the union. But since we are offering benefits like a guaranteed job and pension, a minimum wage of $115k, a 20-hour work week, and a 100% mortgage at 0% interest, building this union is a realistic possibility because that is a deal most workers will find worth joining the union for.

All we need to do to radically change the world forever is to just form a better worker union. Although the change would certainly be revolutionary, making that change is really that simple.

I am not reinventing the wheel. Forming a national or international worker union and using the general strike to get the changes we want has been the plan for abolishing capitalism and improving society for the past 150+ years.

We don't need to abolish government or write a new constitution like you propose.

.

"Without a nexus, all this talk is just pie in the sky. Lets get to point B first, then we can talk and plan for point C. "

Why don't you just write a brief overview of what you advocate.

So far I have managed to get you to say you want to abolish government. And then you want to replace it with what? A direct democracy? Government is a full-time job. How would people's lives benefit from being able to directly vote on the minutia of regulation?

The problem people have is lack of income, not lack of a say on an appropriations bill for their roads.

[-] 0 points by rickMoss (435) 2 years ago

We agree on trying to get enough income for people.

The way you propose to make this happen is a union. When I read that my jaw dropped. And I know you aren’t kidding.

Dear sir, when I compare your plan to OsiXs, it’s no contest and no fair. Your plan has good intentions but your nexus is delinquent. A big union is going to solve all the problems we have now, not to mention the problems we’re going to have in the future. Are you kidding? The republicans are killing the unions literally. Pretty soon they won’t exist. I’m an engineer by trade. OsiXs is real thinking out of the box. You are rehashing the same mess we’ve used for ages. This is exactly why our problems keep escalating because people think we can finesse our problem with familiar old methods by dressing them up or may be super charging them. You have too many holes in your plan. The biggest flaw is that you lack a Nexus.

I’m curious. How old are you, what is your educational background and profession? You have some good ideas but I’m sorry you don’t have the gift. Don’t feel bad, neither did Thomas Edison but look where he ended up. We need a Tesla, not an Edison.

Our problems are huge my friend. We need an atom bomb but your solution is more of a spit ball. This is the problem we face. The people are the real problem. They have no idea how much trouble we are in. Our system of government is corrupt from top to bottom. That includes the judicial system but you want to solve our problems with one gigantic union. Go for it. It can’t be any worse than where we are now and where we are headed.

To your question about direct democracy - I guess you didn’t read common sense 3.1. The executive branch becomes the administrative branch. The people only vote on things they feel are important (like wars, finances, healthcare -things of that nature). They delegate the other crap they don’t want to be bothered with to the politicians. They are administrators and not our so called leaders anymore.

The problem with the people is ignorance, arrogance and apathy. And it’s starting to cost us all dearly.

FIGHT THE CAUSE - NOT THE SYMPTOM OsiXs (The Nuclear Option)

[-] 3 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"A big union is going to solve all the problems we have now, not to mention the problems we’re going to have in the future. Are you kidding?"

Do you think people would rather be able to vote directly on bills or to be guaranteed a job that pays at least $115k for working 20 hours?

And what do you think is easier to accomplish, abolishing government or getting people to join a union?

What problem do you think cannot be solved with my plan?

.

"The people only vote on things they feel are important (like wars, finances, healthcare -things of that nature)"

How does voting on wars guarantee everyone a job and guarantee everyone a high enough income to make them wealthy?

.

"How old are you, what is your educational background and profession?"

I'm 40, went to business school, studied graduate level economics, worked for the Federal Reserve while in school, worked as an investment banker after school, hated the constant traveling - like 3 days per week - that investment bankers must do, launched several of my own successful businesses, lost millions fighting regulators, made me bitter about business and government, motivated me to re-evaluate our economic system, came to the conclusion it is moronic and unfair.

[-] -1 points by rickMoss (435) 2 years ago

I favor OsiXs over your plan big time. You use the same old constructs of the past. That doesn’t work anymore. You can fool Joe blow with that we’re going to make everybody rich stuff. I know too much. I’m a technologist. We can raise everyone’s standard of living; even the rich but you can’t give everyone 115K salary. That’s all I need to hear because you’re shouting in my face that you have no idea what so ever about the condition of our planets resources and our energy problems. We're already at a tipping point and peak oil is huge problem that is upon us now. The stuff about we have enough resources because the earth’s crust is 30 miles thick doesn’t cut it. Do we have the technology to retrieve resources or oil at those kinds of depths even if they existed down there? No we don’t. Your plan has to be within the constraints of today’s technology. Now if you said the resources on the moon then you would have been more plausible. We can do the moon but I’m not sure if there is any oil up there. Replacing the void left by oil depletion is huge. It could take anywhere from 30 to 100 years to make the transition. I don’t see it in your plan. In fact you go in the opposite direction as if these problems don’t exist. Global warming is going to kick our bee-hinds. In fact, it’s already started. Where are your constructs to deal with all of these problems? You‘re only addressing the symptoms. I don’t think you’re aware of the root causes. It’s not just money. If we screw this up, it could set us back a couple of centuries. It may even destroy us.

I’m 47 and I’m an Electrical Engineer.

FIGHT THE CAUSE - NOT THE SYMPTOM

OsiXs (More Power and Technology to the People!)

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"We can raise everyone’s standard of living; even the rich but you can’t give everyone 115K salary"

This sentence is a contradiction.

We currently produce $135k in income per worker. So if we paid everyone only $115k, we would reduce GDP by 15%. The country would be 15% poorer overall.

But if we paid everyone more money, like you say we can do, we would obviously have to increase GDP.

So what you are saying is we are not capable of lowering GDP (by paying everyone $115k), but we are capable of increasing GDP (by paying everyone more). That makes no sense.

.

"The stuff about we have enough resources because the earth’s crust is 30 miles thick doesn’t cut it"

My plan doesn't require us to increase production or drill 30 miles deep or go to the moon. It just requires us to maintain the same level of production. And we have more than enough resources to do that with our current mining capabilities.

But if you don't think we can even do that, how can you claim that we can raise everyone's standard of living?

You are contradicting yourself.

.

"We're already at a tipping point and peak oil is huge problem that is upon us now"

I can assure you that the problems that 150 million Americans, which make up the 50% that the census says are currently in poverty or close to it in their recent press release, are faced with each day are not the depletion of resources or peak oil. Their problem is lack of income.

You are out of touch if you think resource depletion and peak oil are the world's primary problems when most people are too poor to consume much resources and oil.

You think people are out in the streets because we ran out of resources?

.

"You‘re only addressing the symptoms"

The root cause of our problems is not peak oil. Even if we switched to cleaner, renewable energy, we would still have most in poverty and enormous, inhumane, undemocratic income inequality.

My goal is to fix the problem of income inequality, not global warming. I agree global warming is a problem. But there is nothing in my plan that prevents us from adopting green technology. And since companies are publicly owned, I think that is the best way to make that change because there is no way privately owned Exxon is going to voluntary stop its business.

And I don't know how you think direct democracy is going to fix your idea of peak oil. What if everyone votes for continued use of cheap oil?

[-] 0 points by rickMoss (435) 2 years ago

My friend. Like I said, you are stuck in the matrix. I looked at your plan. It's just lacking. Good effort but lacking. I've learned nothing new from your plan and rhetoric. I've learned volumes from OsiXs. Your plan is one dimensional. OsiXs is 3D. That's why I didn't want to waste the time trying to convince you otherwise. You're stuck on your own Kool-Aid so enjoy it. I just happen to like Tang. You don't even have NeXus. You get a Flat out F for that and you don't know why so I'll tell. Without a nexus you don't have a chance in making your plan happen. It means you don't have a plan. You have points to debate around endlessly. Kind of like our government. Let it go. Free your mind.

Now repeat after me - I am not a Slave! I am not a Slave! I am not a Slave!

How else can I say this? "We Are Free!" http://WeAreFree.osixs.org

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Speaking in riddles is not helping your cause. Your comment makes absolutely no sense. I have an idea, why not try having an adult conversation? I don't think you have made a single useful comment to this forum.

[-] 0 points by rickMoss (435) 2 years ago

You don't have to be put off because I don't think your ideas are the best. Nothing personal, I just think someone else's ideas are better. That's what this forum is about. looking at different points of views and then deciding which ones are the best. If I find something better that I think will benefit everyone then I will choose it. My goal is the same as everyone else - to be free!

FIGHT THE CAUSE - NOT THE SYMPTOM

OsiXs (More Power and Technology to the People!)

[-] 0 points by rickMoss (435) 2 years ago

Sounds like a good plan but how do you make it happen. This looks a lot like the stuff from osixs. common sense 3.1 is the best way to make it happen.

U.S. Citizens Read “Common Sense 3.1” at ( http://revolution2.osixs.org )

Non U.S. Citizens Read “Common Sense 3.2” at ( http://SaveTheWorldNow.osixs.org ) We don't have to live like this anymore...

[Removed]

[-] 0 points by rickMoss (435) 2 years ago

You have a good heart but you have a terrible plan. Here is a better plan and vision of the future.

FIGHT THE CAUSE - NOT THE SYMPTOM

U.S. Citizens Read “Common Sense 3.1” at ( http://revolution2.osixs.org )

Non U.S. Citizens Read “Common Sense 3.2” at ( http://SaveTheWorldNow.osixs.org )

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

The root cause of ALL our problems is lack of income. People only lack income because a few at the top take most of it, leaving everyone else broke. The ONLY solution to that is to use the law to allocate income fairly so that nobody is left lacking income.

Your plan won't work and does not address the root cause.

[-] 0 points by rickMoss (435) 2 years ago

Not my plan, but it's a far sight better than yours. Lack of income is the cause of global warming? And you wonder why the 99% are getting their asses kicked.

FIGHT THE CAUSE - NOT THE SYMPTOM OsiXs (Revolution 2.0 - The Smart Revolution)

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

People are not dying or suffering because of global warming. The difference between the 1% and 99% is not global warming. The economy didn't collapse because of global warming. This movement isn't called occupy warming.

You can go fight global warming. I will stick to the real problems that people face - lack of income.

[-] 0 points by rickMoss (435) 2 years ago

Sorry I spoke over your head. Maybe this will help. What is causing the lack of income? What is causing global warming? They are one in the same. If you know the problem what is your solution - protesting. Ha! Ha! - I laugh at theee. The reason why nothing ever changes in this country is because the people are so ignorant and arrogant. I know and understand the real problem now and I am applying a real solution. You are just talking. Here is my advice to you. Get educated. Know what the hell you're up against. Read "Death by Technology" - Then do something about.

“Be Smart!” – FIGHT THE CAUSE – NOT THE SYMPTOM

U.S. Citizens Read “Common Sense 3.1” at ( http://revolution2.osixs.org )

Non U.S. Citizens Read “Common Sense 3.2” at ( http://SaveTheWorldNow.osixs.org )

Now go away, you bother me.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You haven't offered a single piece of information to this forum. All you do is constantly spam the forum with ads trying to sell your book or advertise your website.

Instead of spamming the forum trying to sell a book nobody will buy, why don't you make a post that gets straight to the point and just lists specifically what you want to change, how you will make that change and what specific benefits it will deliver.

[-] -1 points by rickMoss (435) 2 years ago

I wish it was my book. Now go away.

[-] 0 points by SparkyJP (1646) from Westminster, MD 2 years ago

We need democracy now. Actually we need direct democracy now.Why don't people vote? Why do we loathe and distrust our politicians? Want to have your voice heard? Looking for answers on how to reform government? Want your vote to matter? This trailer for a feature-length film answers these questions and provides a viable solution for what's wrong with democracy.

Democracy 2.0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8AxdLBNNlxo&feature=related

[-] 0 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Just being able to vote, even if it is direct voting, does not make society democratic.

Democracy is Greek for "people power" not "voting" or "majority rule". It means the power to act rests with everyone equally. All power in society comes from income. Your income determines your political power. So your income determines how much power you have in society.

However, income is also the incentive we use to get people to do hard work and give their maximum effort. So a democratic society is a society that allocates income in a way where differences in income are limited to just what is necessary to get people to do hard work and give their maximum effort.

If you have a society where everyone can directly vote on issues and some people have 50,000 times more income than others, you do not have a democratic society because they will have 50,000 times more political power to influence society.

You can read more information on what democracy is in this comment.

[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 2 years ago

No offense, but you should first start a business if you are going to say that you want a say in everyone else's.

Theres a reason most go out of business in 5 years. Its tough stuff trying to juggle it all.

So you think my Uncle should pay his crew 200k a year? Where is that going to come from?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I was a business owner.

Running a business is difficult, that is why entrepreneurs would be the highest paid workers. They would have the chance to earn the maximum.

Worker income will be allocated at the national level. It is based on total GDP. It is all explained in the post.

For every 100 workers, 97 will get a pay raise which will be fully offset by 3 who get a pay decrease.

Since all we are doing is redistributing existing income, prices on average will remain the same. Some goods and services may go up in price. But others will go down in price by the same exact amount.

If your uncle has a small company, with a few employees, they may all get a pay raise. If so, and labor is their predominant cost, they would be among the goods and services where prices would go up.

[-] 0 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Workforce of the US is about 150 million. Divide 222,736 million hours by that and you get 1485 hours per year or 28.6 hours per week.

I have absolutely no idea where you got the idea that minimum wage workers make up 88.3% of the hours worked in the US. But anyway, if all income went to wages and salaries the average income would be about 81k, not 115k, because of the large number of people working less than 40 hours per week.

Also, If you are poor, it's because you want to be or because you're stupid.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Workforce of the US is about 150 million. Divide 222,736 million hours by that and you get 1485 hours per year or 28.6 hours per week."

We have 95 million full time workers and 40 million part time workers.

"I have absolutely no idea where you got the idea that minimum wage workers make up 88.3% of the hours worked in the US"

That is the percentage of worker who would get paid $115k because that is the current percentage of workers who work jobs that are not physically or mentally difficult.

"But anyway, if all income went to wages and salaries the average income would be about 81k, not 115k, because of the large number of people working less than 40 hours per week."

The average income is not $81k or $115k. It is $135k which is computed by dividing total income $14.5 trillion by total hours worked which is 222,736 million hours. That amounts to $65 per hour which would be $135k if you worked full time.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

That amounts to $65 per hour which would be $135k if you worked full time.

We have 95 million full time workers and 40 million part time workers.

Compare your two statements.

Now, we "could" make income that high if everyone consumed more than they currently do, and paid four times what they currently do for what they consume (since they would be making $115k per year). But that's called inflation, not a rise in real standard of living or GDP growth.

222,736 million hours divided by (52 * 40)=2080 hours per worker is 107 million workers. (2.5% top workers, 9.47% difficult workers, the rest "minimum wage" at $115k per year).

So now unemployment has risen to about 28% with your scheme, using your inputs for the current size of the economy and the number of hours worked.

Of course people would consume more if income was distributed in this way, but not enough to eliminate unemployment since prices would rise to allow McDonalds to pay its workers $115k per year.

People who do have money to be able to afford it (the top earners, whether due to their skills in your system or owning capital in the current system) would be able to spend enough to employ the extra 28% of the workforce but they choose not to because it would be 'wasteful'. The only way to fix the problem, of either income inequality (with a low minimum wage) or unemployment if the minimum wage is raised, is for people to work less and reduce the total number of hours the workforce is providing.

http://occupywallst.org/forum/if-you-are-poor-its-because-you-want-to-be-or-beca/

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Now, we "could" make income that high if everyone consumed more than they currently do, and paid four times what they currently do for what they consume"

If you go through the math above, you will find that paying everyone from $115k to $460k will total to $14.5 trillion which is exactly equal to the total income in 2010.

Your claim that it adds up to 4 times more income is not true.

Since we are paying out the same total income, since we are just redistributing existing income, it does not cause inflation.

.

"222,736 million hours divided by (52 * 40)=2080 hours per worker is 107 million workers"

Although we worked 222,736 million hours, we do not all work full time. So we do not have 107 million full-time workers. We have 95 million full time workers and 40 million part time workers.

.

"So now unemployment has risen to about 28% with your scheme"

No. You are not understanding the numbers. Everyone who works is not a full time worker.

.

"Of course people would consume more if income was distributed in this way"

This plan is based on the economy in 2010.

In 2010 we consumed $14.5 trillion in total goods and services.

Under this plan, we will pay out a total of $14.5 trillion in income, so we will also consume $14.5 trillion in total goods and services.

.

"is for people to work less and reduce the total number of hours the workforce is providing."

People don't need to work less. We will never run out of work to do. We need to increase spending and investment in order to eliminate unemployment.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Since we are paying out the same total income, since we are just redistributing existing income, it does not cause inflation.

Income distribution affects price levels since demand curves change. (And supply curves would also change if the minimum wage was raised.)

Right now, a billionaire could afford to pay $20, or even $1000 for a McDonald's hamburger. (And some restaurants do have such high prices... this article mentions a club with a $15k annual fee and $50k initiation fee.) But minimum wage is only ~$8/hour so McDonald's can offer its hamburgers for $1, and billionaires spend their money on private jets or just save it.

If full time work was paid minimum $115k/year, then hamburgers would cost several times as much even if goods from other countries cost the same amount, since labor costs in the US would be higher. Someone who made $115k/year would not be able to buy what someone who currently makes $115k can. It's simple supply and demand, and it would cause inflation.

Although we worked 222,736 million hours, we do not all work full time. So we do not have 107 million full-time workers. We have 95 million full time workers and 40 million part time workers.

So people would not be making minimum $115k unless they worked full time, which 40 million people don't do. So those 40 million people working part time at minimum wage would make less than $115k per year, glad that's cleared up.

If you define full-time as exactly 40 hours, then 95 million full-time workers take up 197,600 million hours leaving 25,136 million hours for the 40 million part time workers, or 12.1 hours per week of work or $35k per year at $55/hour while prices would have gone up somewhat as well.

People don't need to work less. We will never run out of work to do. We need to increase spending and investment in order to eliminate unemployment.

The rich would prefer to give their money away rather than spend it. And people are adverse to the government spending more money to create jobs; in a NYT poll, 52% were against it vs 42% for it.

All I can say about "we will never run out of work to do" is what reality are you looking at. Unemployment is stil around 8% with 4 job seekers for every job opening; if there is work to do why isn't it worth paying for?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Income distribution affects price levels since demand curves change"

Price doesn't change because demand changes. Price will only change if demand relative to supply changes.

Since all we are doing is redistributing existing income, any increase in demand will be met with an increase in supply. So prices on average will remain the same.

Demand for Mercedes may go up. But demand for private jets will go down. So the labor, materials, and energy that used to go to build jets will now go to build Mercedes so that the supply will increase to meet the increase in demand.

.

"If full time work was paid minimum $115k/year, then hamburgers would cost several times as much even if goods from other countries cost the same amount, since labor costs in the US would be higher"

Labor costs will not be higher.

If all we did was raise the minimum wage to $115k, then labor costs and prices will go up. But that is not what we are doing.

The money used to increase the minimum wage to $115k comes by lowering the top pay to $460k. We are just redistributing existing incomes. Some will get an increase in pay and others will get a decrease in pay by the same exact amount.

So overall, total labor costs remain exactly the same as what they are today. So there will be no overall inflation.

.

"All I can say about "we will never run out of work to do" is what reality are you looking at. Unemployment is stil around 8% with 4 job seekers for every job opening; if there is work to do why isn't it worth paying for?"

Unemployment is high because people do not want to invest. And people do not want to invest because they are scared there is not enough demand. And there is not enough demand because too many people are unemployed. This is the absurdity of using the market system to control our entire economy.

We have plenty of work that needs to get done. People want homes, new homes, larger homes, new kitchens and bathrooms, new cars. Bridges and roads need to be fixed, scientific research needs to be done, we can explore space, we can update our energy infrastructure, etc. We will never run out of work to do.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Price doesn't change because demand changes. Price will only change if demand relative to supply changes.

Since all we are doing is redistributing existing income, any increase in demand will be met with an increase in supply. So prices on average will remain the same.

The example I might have had in mind was housing prices, including rent prices. I think, actually, you might be visualizing the standard economic charts but looking at the wrong axis. When demand and supply both go "up" with the normal orientation, the quantity traded stays the same but prices go up. (vertical = price, horizontal = quantity)

If "all we are doing is redistributing existing income", then yes, demand and supply both go "up" in price, which means they would both cost more but have roughly the same quantity (for some classes of goods). Which is inflation.

Demand for Mercedes may go up. But demand for private jets will go down. So the labor, materials, and energy that used to go to build jets will now go to build Mercedes so that the supply will increase to meet the increase in demand.

Please explain how to make a $1 hamburger using $55/hour workers. But yes, I agree with this specific example of products.

The money used to increase the minimum wage to $115k comes by lowering the top pay to $460k. We are just redistributing existing incomes. Some will get an increase in pay and others will get a decrease in pay by the same exact amount.

So you're saying that the government would do this through massive taxation and wealth transfer payments, on a much greater scale than has ever been seen before. A worker would make and sell $1 hamburgers, and receive $200 in sales for a day ($64 of that would be their wages), but the government would give them an extra $400 similar to the "Earned Income Tax Credit". While if they were in corporate management making $1000 per day, they get no $400/day bonus and maybe even have a few hundred $ of their daily income taxed away. (Since corporate profits would provide for most of the wealth transfer payments, those who actually work might not need high taxes.)

Now that I understand what exactly you're proposing, why do you think any corporations would bother to stay in the US if the US government taxes away 99% of corporate profits and most of the income of corporate executives? Your plan is unrealistic even for a different reason than what I originally thought.

Unemployment is high because people do not want to invest. And people do not want to invest because they are scared there is not enough demand.

This is the standard Keynesian response, so I will give the non-standard counter-response: the purpose of investing is to make money, which comes from selling things to other people and means you end up with more money. If all rich people invest their money, where exactly is the profit or incentive to invest? Unemployment goes down when the rich spend their money, not invest it, or when the middle class alter their spending patterns such that they consume more (more work done) with the same amount of money spent.

You are wrong, but only because Keynes and everyone who uses the "lack of investment!" argument is also wrong.

We have plenty of work that needs to get done. People want homes, new homes, larger homes, new kitchens and bathrooms, new cars. Bridges and roads need to be fixed, scientific research needs to be done, we can explore space, we can update our energy infrastructure, etc. We will never run out of work to do.

Warren Buffett only owns one house, and has a relatively old, non-luxury car. While it's true that poor people always have something they could benefit from buying (or they wouldn't define themselves as poor), "wealth redistribution" is a critically flawed way of creating more work.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"When demand and supply both go "up" with the normal orientation, the quantity traded stays the same but prices go up."

That is not correct.

Prices will only go up if demand goes up and supply remains the same.

If demand goes up and supply increases to meet that demand, prices remain the same.

.

"Please explain how to make a $1 hamburger using $55/hour workers."

There are thousands of workers that contribute to making a $1 hamburger: the minimum wage workers at the store, management, executives, investors and owners plus all the workers, management, executives, investors and owners of all of McDonald's suppliers.

For every 100 workers, 97 will get a pay raise and 3 will get a pay decrease. Prices will remain the same because the increase in pay for the 97 workers will be fully offset by the decrease in the 3 workers.

.

"So you're saying that the government would do this through massive taxation and wealth transfer payments, on a much greater scale than has ever been seen before."

No. That is not what I advocate at all. Read the post.

.

"Unemployment goes down when the rich spend their money, not invest it, or when the middle class alter their spending patterns such that they consume more"

That is not true. Workers do not spend enough money to cover the cost of their salary plus the income of the unemployed.

There is not enough demand because the unemployed do not have money to spend.

Whether you agree with Keynes or not, the facts are very clear. Nearly all investment stopped when the economy crashed.

The same thing happene during the Great Depression. And the Fed was convinced not to provide the investment money that the market was no longer offering. So the recession turned into the Great Depression.

If the Fed would have done the same thing, and not provided investment money, our current recession would have turned into another Great Depression.

.

"Warren Buffett only owns one house, and has a relatively old, non-luxury car."

That is not true. He has a $30 million house in Florida. He probably has a lot of additional properties. He also travels in a $50 million private jet.

.

"'wealth redistribution' is a critically flawed way of creating more work."

That is not what I advocate. What I advocate is putting our idle savings to work by investing whatever amount is necessary to create enough new businesses to employ all the people currently unemployed.

[-] 0 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Economic charts are normally oriented with price on the vertical axis, and quantity on the horizontal axis.

Going 'up' means that people are willing to buy or sell at a higher price. Going to the 'right' would mean a greater quantity.

Prices will remain the same because the increase in pay for the 97 workers will be fully offset by the decrease in the 3 workers.

Not all businesses have the same levels of profitability, or more specifically income per employee.

S.&P. 500 countries apparently average $420k per employee; this doesn't mean that every business has this level of revenues. Apple had $400k in profit per employee in 2011; that doesn't mean that every restaurant has the same level of income.

As described, your suggestion would only happen through massive taxation and wealth redistribution. Some nice poll data,

64% would choose cutting government spending over raising taxes on corporations despite that only 4% think that corporations use savings from tax cuts to hire more workers.
http://occupywallst.org/forum/work-conservation-is-the-solution-to-the-global-re/

That is not true. Workers do not spend enough money to cover the cost of their salary plus the income of the unemployed.
The top 5% of income are responsible for ~37% of consumer spending. They still have some left over after that, but the point is money is continually flowing from the rich to the rest of the economy; the reason it flows back just as quickly is spending patterns.

If the Fed would have done the same thing, and not provided investment money, our current recession would have turned into another Great Depression.
I am too lazy to look up things I've read recently about capacity utilization rates and the lack of investment in new equipment; apparently capacity has shrunk by 5% since the start of the recession because businesses haven't bothered to replace old equipment. But this is a tangential point since we both are aware (agree) that the problem is lack of demand.

About Warren Buffett, according to Wikiopedia... He lives in the same house in the central Dundee neighborhood of Omaha that he bought in 1958 for $31,500, today valued at around $700,000 (although he also owns a $4 million house in Laguna Beach, California).

So $5 million, maybe as much as $35 million, out of current ownership of $44 billion (about 1000 times the value of his houses). So as I said, people do run out of things to buy. But I realize it isn't the most effective argument....

That is not what I advocate. What I advocate is putting our idle savings to work by investing whatever amount is necessary to create enough new businesses to employ all the people currently unemployed.

Well, here you change arguments. First you say that we should only redistribute profits to employees within a company (which 'could' work even if not everyone got the same income), now you say we "invest" in new businesses despite admitting that "[t]here is not enough demand". But that isn't very important, because existing businesses could raise production if the US did force businesses to redistribute all profits to employees (or through taxes so everyone had the same minimum income as you originally described).

It's just very unlikely that people will agree to do this given the opposition to socialism or higher taxes.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Economic charts are normally oriented with price on the vertical axis, and quantity on the horizontal axis. Going 'up' means that people are willing to buy or sell at a higher price. Going to the 'right' would mean a greater quantity."

What you described is a blank chart. Within that chart you would have a demand and a supply curve. Where they intersect would be the market price. Charts are not going to help you understand market pricing.

The market is a Walrasian auction.

If you have 5 paintings to sell and 100 people who want to buy them, the price will clearly be bid up.

If you have 5 paintings to sell and only 1 person who wants to buy them, the price will clearly be bid down.

So if demand exceeds supply, price will go up. And if supply exceeds demand, price will go down.

.

"S.&P. 500 countries apparently average $420k per employee; this doesn't mean that every business has this level of revenues."

That is correct. In a socialist system, your income is based on the total national income, not on the income of the company you work for. You can only allocate income at the national level if all the companies were publicly owned.

.

"As described, your suggestion would only happen through massive taxation and wealth redistribution."

No. I do not advocate a capitalist system with massive taxation.

My suggestion would only happen in a socialist system where every company was publicly owned. That is what I advocate. I advocate a system where ever company was publicly owned. Read the post!

.

"Well, here you change arguments. First you say that we should only redistribute profits to employees within a company"

I never said we should just redistribute profits within a company. Read the actual post. Income should be allocated at the national level, not at the company level.

.

"It's just very unlikely that people will agree to do this given the opposition to socialism or higher taxes."

I don't advocate higher taxes. I advocate socialism.

30% actually have a favorable opinion of socialism despite the fact that the word has been used as essentially a curse word in this country for the past 100 years and has had almost nobody in the mainstream media advocate on its behalf.

If people understood that socialism means more freedom because it gives you more money and more time to do what you want, a minimum wage of $115k, getting paid to go to school, a guaranteed job and pension, 0% interest mortgage and a 20 hour work week, there would be far more than 30% in favor of it.

[-] 0 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Alright, I searched for "publicly" and in one place you said,

However, this plan does not say every business has to be publicly owned. It only says total income has to be allocated democratically. You can still use your own money to start your own business. But you cannot earn more than what the national plan allows. And since every worker is guaranteed a job at the plan's income levels, you would have to pay those rates when you hire someone or convince someone to take a lower pay to work for you.

...but in another place you do say that all businesses must be publicly owned and I admit I did not read that post.

There is, of course, nothing preventing this plan from occurring now. If people want to be able to earn just as much from an entry-level retail sales job as they do from a job that requires a 2-year degree or certification, this plan is certainly one way to accomplish that.

If people understood that socialism means more freedom because it gives you more money and more time to do what you want

How does this give you more time? Do you mean people could get the minimum income of $115k, by your calculations, while working less than full-time?

A quote also comes to mind: "We pretend to work and they pretend to pay us". When income is unrelated to the quality of work done, the type of work done, the rate of production or even how much you sell products for, it's clear there would shortages and other types of economic inefficiency. Someone selling hamburgers for $1 each would still make $115k/year; someone else working a 'minimum-wage job' could buy every hamburger in the shop and throw them in the garbage, and still have another $9400 to spend that month.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"How does this give you more time?"

As I mention in the actual post, half the jobs we currently do can be automated with existing technology. So automating them would be a priority so that we would be able to reduce the work week to 20 hours.

Of course, if you just worked part time before those jobs were automated, you would earn at least $57k which is enough to live comfortably on.

.

"When income is unrelated to the quality of work done, the type of work done, the rate of production or even how much you sell products for, it's clear there would shortages and other types of economic inefficiency. "

Pay for management would be based on the financial performance of the company. So there is incentive for the company to perform well.

.

"Someone selling hamburgers for $1 each would still make $115k/year; someone else working a 'minimum-wage job' could buy every hamburger in the shop and throw them in the garbage, and still have another $9400 to spend that month."

I don't know what that means.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

"Are you proposing companies receive money to pay their workers from more profitable companies with a surplus or from the government?"

Companies must work within the same market mechanism that companies today work within. Nothing changes. If a company does not generate enough revenue to cover its expenses, they will go under.

Then there would be a job shortage, just like now. It's that simple.

"So your performance indicators that determine management compensation are based on sales/revenues. I think you would see $100 hamburgers after all"

You are exactly right. That's why McDonald's hamburgers currently cost $100. Their managers are paid based on financial performance. So now all hamburgers cost $100.

Most people don't make $115k+ right now. This is not a complicated argument.

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"People who have money already have everything they want...Rich people could afford to buy hundreds, or even thousands of smart 60" flat screen TVs. Why haven't they done this? Think about what you're saying for a second."

Those people represent the top 3% of the population. The bottom 97% DO NOT HAVE EVERYTHING THEY WANT!!! When you look at the entire population, not just rich people, you will find that people want far, far, far more than we can produce. In order to meet the demand of the bottom 97% we need more workers, not less.

So having people work less hours is not going to enable us to produce more goods and services to meet that demand.

The reason why the bottom 97% are not buying new homes and kitchens and cars is because they do not have enough income, not because they don't want new homes and kitchens and cars.

The problem to lack of income is to guarantee everyone a job and to allocate income democratically so that we can raise the minimum income to $115k so that every worker has enough income to buy most of what they want. And we should continue to increase our productivity so that we can reach a point where everyone has everything they want without requiring anyone to work a job they don't want to work. This is all explained in this post.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Investment isn't the problem in this recession; lack of demand ("Poor sales") is"

There is a lack of demand because people lack money. People lack money because 18% are underemployed. 18% are underemployed because there is nobody investing in new or expanding business to employ them.

To claim that everyone has everything they want and nobody wants any more goods and services than we are currently producing is absurd!

Do you really think the 150 million Americans who are poor or close to it have everything they need? They don't want any more?

.

"Work conservation is the solution."

If you think this idea through, you would see how ridiculous it is.

Work conservation would be the solution if we don't need to produce any more than we are currently producing. In other words, people don't want anything more, everyone already has enough.

But that is simply false. People want far, far, far, far more than we are currently producing. That means we need more workers, not less.

The housing market didn't crash because people no longer wanted any more homes! If you made everything free, people would demand far more new homes, kitchens, cars, bathrooms, furniture, clothes, smart 60" flats screen tvs, restaurants, stadiums, parks, baseball fields, ad infinitum than we could ever produce even with twice the amount of workers!!

Demand is low because people have no money. People have no money because they have no jobs. People have no jobs because businesses are not investing. Businesses are not investing because demand is low.

Demand is low because people have no money. People have no money because... You get the point?

.

"If a company received outside help, they could sell hamburgers for $1 and everyone would still get $115k"

I don't know what that means.

The price of the hamburger depends on the expenses of the hamburger company and its suppliers. Their expenses depend on what they pay their workers.

If all you did was raise some worker pay to $115k, and kept everyone else's pay the same, you would increase your expenses which would require you to increase your prices. BUT THAT IS NOT WHAT WE ARE DOING!!!!!!

We are lowering the income of the top workers who contribute to making hamburgers from millions or billions of dollars to just $460k. We are then taking all that saved money and paying it to the people at the bottom which would raise their income from minimum wage to $115k.

We are just redistributing their EXISTING expenses. Their total expenses remain the same. Since their total expenses are the same, they can keep their prices the same.

.

"But actually, the rich spend a lower percentage of their income on food than the poor do. While a CEO might make 250 times that of an average worker, that doesn't mean they pay 250 times as much for food. Currently the CEO's spending might instead go to Goldman Sachs or they just save it... but this just proves that average prices (one $1000 meal + 1000 $5 meals) would increase, not stay the same."

Huh!?!

The cost of food DEPENDS ON HOW MUCH YOU PAY THE PEOPLE TO PRODUCE THE FOOD!!!!!!

It is not based on how rich people spend their money!

If the CEO of McDonalds makes $10 million and the minimum wage worker in the drive-thru makes $10k and you raise the minimum wage worker to $5 million, McDonalds costs will go up. So they would have to raise the price of their hamburger to cover that extra cost.

But if the CEO's pay was lowered from $10 million to $5 million and you raised the minimum wage worker from $10k to $5 million, THEIR TOTAL COSTS REMAIN EXACTLY THE SAME. Since their costs are the same, they can keep their price the same.

If the pay of the CEO of Exxon changed, IT WOULD HAVE NO EFFECT ON THE PRICE OF McDONALDS HAMBURGERS BECAUSE HE DOES NOT WORK FOR McDONALDS!!!

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

18% are underemployed because there is nobody investing in new or expanding business to employ them.

To claim that everyone has everything they want and nobody wants any more goods and services than we are currently producing is absurd!

People who have money already have everything they want. This is why they continually 'earn' more money (through dividends, etc.) than they spend.

As I have said, the purpose of investing is to earn more money. If this money is not spent, the logical result is higher unemployment. It is possible that investment will be unwisely done and it will not return as much money as was spent, but this is called waste and bad business, not "let's find ridiculous ways to create jobs and expect the rich to finance them".

If someone owns 50% of a company that makes $10 billion in profit because people like its brand, guess what? That person gets $5 billion (before corporate/personal taxes) and will likely have more than they can spend. It is only absurd as the idea of buying something because of its logo, which many people do. If you find reality absurd, maybe you should try to change reality (by supporting work conservation) instead of rejecting it.

Do you really think the 150 million Americans who are poor or close to it have everything they need? They don't want any more?

Maybe they do want more brand-name products instead of whatever cheap product they currently have, but they are too stupid to vote for it.

But that is simply false. People want far, far, far, far more than we are currently producing. That means we need more workers, not less.

There are many people who have the wealth to be able to purchase far more than what they are already consuming. The fact that they are not spending that wealth directly contradicts your statement. Maybe they want more money, but the evidence is that they do not want to consume more (which is what creates jobs).

new homes, kitchens, cars, bathrooms, furniture, clothes, smart 60" flats screen tvs, restaurants, stadiums, parks, baseball fields

Rich people could afford to buy hundreds, or even thousands of smart 60" flat screen TVs.

Why haven't they done this? Think about what you're saying for a second.

Demand is low because people have no money.

US household wealth: $55 trillion.

We are just redistributing their EXISTING expenses. Their total expenses remain the same. Since their total expenses are the same, they can keep their prices the same.

At what point will you understand that not all companies have the same revenue per employee?

The cost of food DEPENDS ON HOW MUCH YOU PAY THE PEOPLE TO PRODUCE THE FOOD!!!!!!

It is not based on how rich people spend their money!

You are assuming markets are competitive.

Most markets are not competitive. A good explanation of monopoly markets: http://blakemasters.tumblr.com/post/21169325300/peter-thiels-cs183-startup-class-4-notes-essay

If the cost of products depended only on "how much workers were paid", iPhones would cost $400 each, not $650~850.

If the pay of the CEO of Exxon changed, IT WOULD HAVE NO EFFECT ON THE PRICE OF McDONALDS HAMBURGERS BECAUSE HE DOES NOT WORK FOR McDONALDS!!!

This would be true if people only made spending decisions based on price.

But they don't. Not only product differentiation from brands, but also things like location (and the basic principle driving 'fast food restaurants' of time, which includes travel time to a cheaper restaurant).

I'm sure I mentioned Apple's profits before this. How do you think corporations have any profits at all when their competitors can use the same overseas labor to reduce production costs? Did you imagine that somehow, Apple's profits were because it magically had lower production costs than its competitors?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Then there would be a job shortage, just like now. It's that simple."

As I explained in my last comment to you, we will NEVER have a job shortage and will always FULLY employ everyone who wants to work.

In a market system, a company can only exist if they are producing something consumers want and for a price consumers are willing to pay. Consumer tastes and interests are impossible to predict and are constantly changing. So companies will constantly be going out of business.

Business failure is an important component of a market system. So a percentage of the workforce will always be losing their job.

However, since this is a socialist system, we have direct control over how much we invest. We use public funds for investment, we don't rely on private individuals deciding to invest. So we will ALWAYS invest whatever amount is needed to launch enough new businesses and expand enough established businesses to fully employ 100% of the people who got laid off from those failed companies.

The reason why we have high unemployment today is not because we ran out of work to do or we ran out of new ideas!! There is unemployment because the rich are not investing their savings to launch enough new businesses to employ all the people who are out of work. That is why the Keynesian approach to a recession is that if the private sector is not willing to spend the money to fully employ everyone, the government should step in and spend the money.

But in a socialist system that is never a problem because you do not have to rely on whether the rich are willing to invest their savings. You just invest whatever amount is needed to reach full employment.

So we will always have full employment because we will never run out of new ideas and there never will be a shortage of investment money to fund those new ideas.

.

"Most people don't make $115k+ right now. This is not a complicated argument."

It is complicated because you keep changing your argument! You said we will have $100 hamburgers because managers are getting paid based on performance. Now you are saying we will have $100 hamburgers because the minimum wage is $115k? Which is it?

None of those arguments are valid.

If all we did was raise the minimum wage worker pay to $115k and left all incomes alone, that would raise the cost of hamburgers. But that is not what we are doing. We are also lowering the top incomes from millions and billions of dollars to just $460k. The amount we are reducing the top pay is exactly equal to the amount we are raising the bottom incomes. So overall there is ZERO increase in pay. So prices remain the same.

There are thousands of workers that contribute to making a $1 hamburger: the minimum wage workers at the store, managers, executives, investors and owners plus all the workers, managers, executives, investors and owners of all of McDonald's suppliers.

For every 100 workers, 97 will get a pay raise and 3 will get a pay decrease. Prices will remain the same because the increase in pay for the 97 workers will be fully offset by the decrease in the 3 workers.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

So we will ALWAYS invest whatever amount is needed to launch enough new businesses and expand enough established businesses to fully employ 100% of the people who got laid off from those failed companies.

Investment isn't the problem in this recession; lack of demand ("Poor sales") is. Having the government invest would not change that. As you keep repeating, if a business does not have enough revenues to pay its workers, they would not get paid and the business would fail/close.

The fact that the government paid for investing in capital does not change anything, except lead to wasteful creation of unused capital and plants. Many people would still be unemployed.

There is unemployment because the rich are not investing their savings to launch enough new businesses to employ all the people who are out of work

The evidence directly contracts this statement. http://macromarketmusings.blogspot.com/2012/04/is-there-really-aggregate-demand.html

Existing businesses could easily hire more people. Capital utilization is down as well, because the capital exists to produce more but it isn't being fully used. Keynes said the same thing about "lack of investment", and Keynesian is supposed to be popular right now, but that doesn't change the fact that this explanation for unemployment is wrong.

People buy too many brands which diverts their spending into corporate profits, leeching money out of the economy. Not complicated. Work conservation is the solution. http://the99percentvotes.com/idea/US95

You recognize that government can increase employment by spending. Why do you cling to the idea that it is insufficient investment by the rich that leads to unemployment, and not insufficient spending? The purpose of investing is to end up with more money; do you really think that it would help the economy for the wealthy to become even wealthier?

You said we will have $100 hamburgers because managers are getting paid based on performance. Now you are saying we will have $100 hamburgers because the minimum wage is $115k? Which is it?

If a company received outside help, they could sell hamburgers for $1 and everyone would still get $115k. But if management gets bonuses (from the government you said, but it has never been clear what you think should happen to excess profits after paying wage costs since you have clarified that underperforming businesses would not receive outside help) then they will try to maximize sales/profits, and that means increasing prices until profits peak. With $115k minimum wage, that could easily be at $100 per hamburger.

Hamburgers are not $10 or $100 each right now because most people don't make $115k+.

So overall there is ZERO increase in pay. So prices remain the same.

"Average" prices might remain the same. But this is because some restaurants charge $1000 for a meal while others charge $1 or $5. More equal incomes means less variation in prices as well, meaning that the minimum price goes up (just like the minimum wage did).

But actually, the rich spend a lower percentage of their income on food than the poor do. While a CEO might make 250 times that of an average worker, that doesn't mean they pay 250 times as much for food. Currently the CEO's spending might instead go to Goldman Sachs or they just save it... but this just proves that average prices (one $1000 meal + 1000 $5 meals) would increase, not stay the same.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Do you know that most American capitalist companies also impose performance standards and it has yet to cause a famine?

You aren't proposing that corporations continue to have control of their performance standards. Although you're contradictory in places; I noticed you said that if being a boat guide only earned you $35k per year because people wouldn't pay more for a trip, that person would only make $35k/year unless they switched to another job that paid more. So you really don't seem to have any mechanism for actually getting $115k to workers of companies that average less than that in revenues per worker.

Are you proposing companies receive money to pay their workers from more profitable companies with a surplus or from the government? If not, then what do you propose happens to profits in excess of $115k (or more, for skilled workers) for very profitable companies? Remember, the S.&.P. 500 averaged $420k in revenues per employee last year, while Apple had something like $400k in profit per employee.

If you think that inefficient companies can receive outside help to pay employees without this causing problems in society, the history of communism has shown you are incorrect.

You can't forge sales and get away with it. You will get caught. You would have to make up fake credit cards from fake people.

So your performance indicators that determine management compensation are based on sales/revenues. I think you would see $100 hamburgers after all.~

Back to the redistribution question though. Would companies get assistance if they couldn't afford to pay all employees $115k+?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"You aren't proposing that corporations continue to have control of their performance standards"

Yes I am. Companies will be individually run and their managers will be paid based on the company's financial performance.

.

"Although you're contradictory in places"

No, I'm not.

.

"So you really don't seem to have any mechanism for actually getting $115k to workers of companies that average less than that in revenues per worker."

If consumers are not willing to hire a laborer at the prevailing wage and workers are not willing to voluntarily work for less, that service will not exist. That is the way the market works. I would love to have my dentist work for $5 per hour, but that just ain't happening.

.

"Are you proposing companies receive money to pay their workers from more profitable companies with a surplus or from the government?"

Companies must work within the same market mechanism that companies today work within. Nothing changes. If a company does not generate enough revenue to cover its expenses, they will go under.

.

"So your performance indicators that determine management compensation are based on sales/revenues. I think you would see $100 hamburgers after all"

You are exactly right. That's why McDonald's hamburgers currently cost $100. Their managers are paid based on financial performance. So now all hamburgers cost $100.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Pay for management would be based on the financial performance of the company.

Well, nice to have that cleared up. Everyone would be equal... but some would be more equal than others.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Reacting to performance standards imposed by the government was one of the major reasons for the Chinese famine around ~1960."

Do you know that most American capitalist companies also impose performance standards and it has yet to cause a famine?

.

"Local government leaders exaggerated their food production numbers, which lead to so much food being taken that local people starved."

You don't think it is completely ridiculous to compare a backwards, undeveloped, peasant, totalitarian, undemocratic society with zero technology to modern America?

You can't forge sales and get away with it. You will get caught. You would have to make up fake credit cards from fake people. There is very little incentive to do that and even if you did, you will get caught and it won't cause a famine!!!

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

George Orwell advocated democratic socialism which is what I advocate. You don't understand that saying if you think paying people based on their performance who work in performance based jobs is the same as an undemocratic, corrupt, unaccountable, totalitarian system.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

Reacting to performance standards imposed by the government was one of the major reasons for the Chinese famine around ~1960.

Local government leaders exaggerated their food production numbers, which lead to so much food being taken that local people starved.

[Removed]

[Removed]

[Removed]

[-] 0 points by toonces (-117) 2 years ago

If you live in the United States, you are among the top 5% of the income earners in the world... YOU ARE THE RICH!

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Unfortunately, most of those riches do not make it to most Americans. 97% make a below average income and 50% live in or near poverty.

Capitalism works like that everywhere. Nearly every country is capitalist and most of the world is poor. That's because capitalism doesn't work for most people. It only works for the small handful of people who have bargaining power.

[Removed]

[Removed]

[Removed]

[-] 0 points by DevilDog420 (133) from Saratoga Springs, NY 2 years ago

Not realistic at all... not a compromise...

[-] 0 points by betuadollar (-313) 2 years ago

I think you're an idiot. I mean, who would work for 115K a year?

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

People who make less than $115k would want to work for $115k. Roughly 95% of workers make less than $115k, so the overwhelming majority would work for $115k a year.

[-] 0 points by betuadollar (-313) 2 years ago

Sounds too demeaning to me; you're saying I'm not permitted to make any more?

Are you prepared for war and insurrection? You have an army to defend you perhaps? Because you're going to need one when you start telling people you intend to restrict their economic viability.

[-] 2 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

Exactly what the 99% have been saying to the1% for centuries.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You can make more. In the example in my post, you can earn up to $460k.

This plan would increase the income of 97% of workers. And it would increase the income of 50% of workers by 450%. So this would enhance their economic viability, not restrict it.

[Removed]

[-] 0 points by BlackSun (275) from Agua León, BC 2 years ago

Very amusing.

[-] 0 points by MsStacy (1035) 2 years ago

Sounds too good to be true, which usually means it is. Do we have to learn the words to Kumbayah for this utopia too?

[-] 3 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

If I was a capitalist and you told me that we would be able to convince 97% of the entire workforce to accept a below average income so that me and the rest of the capitalists can take most of the income, I would have said that sounds too good to be true. That capitalist utopia is impossible.

But yet here we are, living the capitalist dream.

Read my comment below. All of my claims are backed by government statistics.

[-] 2 points by MsStacy (1035) 2 years ago

If you were a capitalist you'd be bankrupt. You simply took the entire GDP and give it away as salaries. No thought at all apparently about what any of those other pesky little government statistics actually represented.

How were you planning to pay for and maintain al those machines you plan on using to automate plants? Speaking of maintenance, who pays for the upkeep, repair, or replacement of the buildings and machinery that is already there? Who pays for the materials used in manufacturing? A lot of which come from overseas. There is a reason only half of the GDP goes to salaries now, a lot of it goes into keeping a business running.

On the non-manufacturing side of things. How are you going to automate the nearly 85% of all jobs in the US that are in the service industry? No more taxes on businesses just income taxes under your plan I hope, because you haven't set aside any money for that either.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

It turns out that the people who do maintenance and provide materials get salaries too. The only thing someone ever pays for is someone's income. That is why GDP equals total income.

"There is a reason only half of the GDP goes to salaries now, a lot of it goes into keeping a business running."

lol

Read this comment to see how the 20 hour work week was calculated:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/1-replace-capitalism-with-democracy/#comment-662013

Not everything can be allocated efficiently through the market. Health care and police are good examples. So we would still continue to have taxes to pay for those things.

[-] 3 points by MsStacy (1035) 2 years ago

I'm not an economist, so it could certainly be me that's wrong. I read GDP as being composed of all private consumption, all gross investment, all government spending, all exports, minus all imports.

The number represents all money spent on products. Salaries are in there already as one item. Investment in equipment, cost of materials, loan repayment, profit, and government spending are also in there. By taking our GDP and giving every dollar of it to the workers you are failing to keep anything to pay for materials, investment, loans and failing to provide for any government spending.

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

100% of our GDP gets paid to people as income. Some of that income is classified as consumption, some as investment, some as government, some as exports and some as imports.

If I paid you $35k to help build me a factory, that would raise the Investment portion of GDP by exactly $35k.

When you buy $1000 worth of materials, the full $1000 will go towards someone's income. Everything is income.

[-] 3 points by MsStacy (1035) 2 years ago

Then where does the money go now? The government chart you linked to shows 7980.6 billion going to employee compensation. You're taking the taxes paid, and net surplus, and the consumption of fixed capital and just throwing them all into salaries. The CFC is a form of depreciation. I think you've oversimplified the whole thing.

No matter what the salaries turn out to be, your plan is to simply strike and demand that the stockholders give up the companies they invested in without any compensation? Any thought about all the pension plans that get their money from those stock profits?

[-] 1 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago

That is correct, total income would now be paid to workers. There will no longer be income from rent or profits. That is not work, that is UNEARNED income. Workers will no longer just get half the income, they will get it all.

The reason why depreciation is included is because it is gross income, not net income. Gross domestic income is equal to your total production. Net domestic income is your total production minus how much went to replace old assets.

Again, people who work to replace old equipment are also people who are getting an income just like the people producing material.

When the workers refuse to work at a company, that company now becomes worthless. A business cannot function without workers. So stockholders will not have anything valuable to sell. Workers are not obligated to work for some company.

We would put a real pension plan in place which would be paid for with taxes. What that pension is would be something we would vote on. Plus people are still free to save extra money for their retirement.

Unlike our current society where 50% of people are forced to live in or near poverty, a democratic society is a society that works well for everyone, including those who are rich today.