Forum Post: A Question For Paul Krugman
Posted 11 years ago on Jan. 22, 2012, 5:05 a.m. EST by GypsyKing
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
I would really like to hear Paul Krugman explain how it is, that while worker productivity has increased enormously since 1970, and worker wages have fallen precipitously in inflation adjusted dollars, the Western World was economically sound then and now is teetering on the brink of economic collapse?
Something here just don't make nooooo sense!
I can't speak for Krugman (and I don't have a PhD in economics), but obviously productivity is relative; and factors like low wages, child labor, and sweat shops can overcome even the most robust productivity gains (and this is what we're forcing our workers to compete against).
Eventually the system we have now, where moneyed interests influence our political system behind closed doors (and their primary concern is expedient profits) will implode. I think corporations and their wealthy managers have been acting against even their own long term interests, motivated by a dogma of free trade (without any consideration of fairness), and the idea that they should be primarily guided by quarterly profits. Now we're seeing this dogma empirically challenged by our "so called" trading partners.
I can't say whether our entire system would have to implode before we begin to shift to a more democratic economic system (and a more collaborative workplace), but I tend to think that despair (economic or otherwise) is not the most conducive environment for positive social change. That said, it's also true that a movement like OWS would have never gotten off the ground if our economy was booming.
I personally think that a more participatory democracy will be sooner accomplished than workplace democracy, but this may not be a bad thing. I mean, if people become accustomed to participatory democracy, collaboration will be become the social norm (over time), and perhaps it will be easier to begin shifting to a more democratic economic system (or maybe "system" is not the best word, but hopefully you see my point).
Therefore, it seems to make sense to take actions that will improve our economic conditions. In this context, trade reform is I think one of the most important things we can do. I think it's absolutely necessary in order to revitalize our manufacturing sector (and I don't think a modern nation can expect sustained prosperity if its manufacturing sector is destroyed). Here's a link to a legislative proposal I like:
This was a very well thought out comment. Thank you!
I think one problem you point out here is central and that is that corporations, by charter, are impelled to not look beyond quarterly profits, and this obligation does not work in the best interest of citizens at large.
As that system has become international, it therefore creates problems of an international scale that can't be delbt with by nation states. In other words, we have a de-facto international government that does not, by charter, address human needs. This must change.
The primary duty of corporate managers is enhancing shareholder value. However, it's not exactly the same worldwide. In Asia they take a slightly different approach, paying closer attention to the long term interests of the corporation (and its managers are generally somewhat nationalistic). Some European countries have a structure where, for example, a union representative might sit on the board of directors (which is I suppose a slightly better model compared to our own). But as a general rule, you're exactly right, workers really have no voice (at least not a voice with any legal power).
Some would say that our shareholder system has democratic features, but since workers are generally not the primary shareholders (and they have no real ability to influence corporate decisions in their favor), I don't think there's anything "democratic" about our current economic system. Some states do have a legal framework for cooperatives and employee owned companies that allows for something closer to what most of us would endorse (and there are some employee owned companies and cooperatives in the United States). So it is (generally speaking) possible to form an enterprise along these lines (although obviously not enough people are doing it to make a noticeable difference).
Probably the main reason people aren't doing so, is that in almost every area of commerce small business of any kind simply cannot compete with giant corporations, due to economies of scale. That is the overriding advantage of monopolistic power.
Most consumer products made in places like China are not made in huge automated factories where economies of scale is an important factor. The big automated/mechanized industries. like automotive or pharmaceutical manufacturing, have unionized production workers, or the ones that don't (like say computer chip manufacturing) have highly skilled and well paid workers (who do have at least some input into the production process and working conditions).
It would indeed be more of a challenge to democratize these sort of big, automated (and typically unionized) operations, but it wouldn't make much sense to start pushing for democratization in industries like that--at least not in the beginning. We'd want to start where it's easier and less complicated (from a tactical standpoint, it seems like a more rational approach with a much higher probability of success).
Strange and perverse are the patterns of thinking, behaving and relating that characterize the liberal mind....That its relentless protests and demands become understandable only as disorders of the psyche..... The Liberal Mind reveals the madness of the modern liberal for what it is: a massive transference neurosis acted out in the world's political arenas, with devastating effects on the institutions of liberty.
Unless you are part of the 1/100th of the 1%, I doubt you need to worry about what we think in this movement. If you are, there is simply no way you are worthy of such sums of money - I don't care if you're Cleopatra and Joan of Arc combined.
Productivity means you can get equivalent units of production output with less labor. GDP did not rise with the pace of labor entering the economy as more women entered the workforce, which put declining pressure on wages. Plus globalization and outsourcing.
Yes, but what has risen is the productivity of the individual employee, so unless the statistcians have been hiding a 70 unemployment rate for thirty or forty years, there's a lot of money unaccounted for somewhere.
I'm not sure what you mean. I think you mean to the degree that there is more output for the same level of labor. I think it means that it was getting consumed at the same rate it was being produced. Which would account for the increase in consumerism. We all have more and more stuff being made by the increased output of the same amount of labor.
Well, we're even, because I have no idea what you are talking about.
Did I misinterpret your question. Help me out, tell me a different way. We're on the verge, don't stop, I think we're getting close. And if we get there at the same time it will be like a simultaneous internet orgasm!
Oh please April, for all I know you're a Bulgarian weight lifter!
What I was wondering is if you can phrase that comment in a way that is intelligible
You don't like a little dirty sex talk? Everyone likes sex. Maybe you need a little romance first. Me, I like to get right to it.
We could try a new postion if you like. Let's talk about overturning Citizens United. That gets me hot too.
It's kind of hard for me to stay on topic though when there's no leadership and no direction. My mind just turns to sex. I like to imagine having sex with some of the posters here. I'm just funny that way I guess.
"GypsyKing". Now thats hot. I imagine a really sexy guy with long hair and kinda rough. I like it a little rough. And "King". Now thats good too because it implies large in size. See. Isn't this fun. What do we need leadership for? That's so sixty seconds ago. When we can have internet forum sex instead.
lol. What do you have against Bulgarian weight lifters? An orgasm is an orgasm. It's all good. And that's the whole point - it's the internet. So you can imagine whatever you want. If you want to imagine a Bulgarian weight lifter, hey, whatever makes it happen for ya. You're funny Gypsy.
ok, now where were we. Just like real sex when the phone rings or something. I hate that. Anyway, productivity has risen. Which means the same worker generates more output. This output is consumed, meaning we buy more stuff. We are a very materialistic society. And the profit from that consumption flows to the top and is concentrated there because of low tax rates. I think. We're having sex remember, and this is like a new postition. I'm just testing this out to see if it works.
the repelican party is DONE
[-] 0 points by Kirby (25) 0 minutes ago
You have deluded yourself.
↥like ↧dislike reply permalink
That is not very likely. I've been engaged in revolt of the social construct for quite some time - and only articulated a case for revolt in 2009.
Here we are. On the cusp of revolution.
The repelican party has lied - repeatedly - reganonomics is a failure, blue dress stains do not trump issues of national security like terrorism, and Global Warming is here.
Holding up the budget debate with brinkmanship, creating market uncertainty that drove jobs and market numbers down six weeks into that debate, and all for the purpose of political gain - these are all issues of very serious national concern. We cannot keep kicking the can down the road when it comes to our national debt - and we cannot balance the budget on the backs of middle class America.
Repelican policy of economic deregulation has brought us to the brink of economic collapse.
It is inevitable, given both the sum of the lies and the sweeping policy failures - the people will vote these repelican fools out of office.
It's just a matter of time.
It's also a matter of national security.
You will see this become quite apparent over the course of the next six years.
What is uncertain is whether there will be ice caps left at either pole by that time.
we will see.
Thank goodness you're here! The only solution is complete Democrat domination of all branches of government! I've posted this a couple places but nobody seems to have noticed. I was in complete and total shock! (don't know why really, - call me crazy). I guess I'm just in endless disbelief of Repelican insanity.
“I would like to get rid of the campaign finance laws that were put in place,” Romney said at a debate Monday night in Myrtle Beach, S.C. “ . . . Let people make contributions they want to make to campaigns, let campaigns then take responsibility for their own words and not have this strange situation we have.”
And leave it to those Christian Evangelicals to put Mr. Rolly Polly the Gingrich that stole Christmas over the top in SC.
We might see a wave of independents sweep Congress over the next six years - many of the Dems are spineless, and some of them do seem to actually have engaged in some forms of corruption.
I'm not surprised that now there are some leading repelicans who have signed on to ending current finance regulations - they see now that it really isn't to their benefit.
Yet I'm sure their vision remains in many ways as myopic as ever . . . .
btw- Thras got banned for this.
"ending current finance reg"? If they don't see it to their benefit now, it never was. So why are they getting their boxers in a bunch about at this time. It don't get it. They want to make a campaign issue out of eliminating campaign finance reform??
Romney has felt the heat from Gingrich attack ads - funding made possible by Citizens United.
it remains to be seen just what he means by his current position. It could easily indicate he is simply attempting to maintain support long enough to win without actually doing anything about campaign finance.
As far as trashy is concerned - I'm not sure what is up with that. I got a message from shooz who is shadow banned too.
Trashy's post is available - I found it following the links.
I think Romney means it. He won't support campaign finance reform before or after the election. First he made the comment about corporations are people, and now this. He's hardcore 1% and he's sticking to it. This may be the one issue he doesn't flip flop on.
Romney benefited from CU in Iowa as there were many attack ads there aimed at the Rolly Polly one.
Shooz got banned?! Thats awful. What for? Any idea?
It didn't make any sense to me.
stolper samuelson. then look at the wages of our trading partners vietnam, mexico, china, thailand, and cambodia.
What accounts for increased worker productivity?
Computers. Computers have made individual workers the most productive in human history. Notice the sudden rise in productivity corresponds with increased computer use
Wages have fallen at exactly the same rate rich people have lost equity; because of inflation. We get 35 cent dollars compared to 1980.
What is causing this inflation and a "world teetering on the brink of economic collapse"? Worldwide government borrowing and spending. The world is in an insurmountable hole caused by governments borrowing to pay entitlements to their citizens. Socialism at it's finest.
These are hard realities that, of course, you will ignore. You, idiotically enough, want to borrow even more money to pay out even more entitlements. Pretending that if only you steal from those evil rich people your little plan will work. Only by continuing to keep your head up your ass can you fail to notice the rich don't have enough to keep this Titanic afloat.
I know some of you are smart enough to understand these things and you know the party is over and your goal in this silly class war is to make sure everybody is destroyed equally. Such kind, tolerant people. :)
I understand when you say that you don't think the equity of the ultra-wealthy is enough to float the whole world. That is probably true. The question we must ask is - how can we steer this ship away from the iceberg?
It is the inflexibility of vested interest that stands in our way. For 40 years we have been trying to get recycleing going in the US, and it has been defeated time and time again by vested interest, wasting biilions of tons of resources. It is not with their money alone that the ultra-rich that stand in the way of progress, so much as with their stranglehold on policy that prevents us from solving problems in a postive manner.
I have said time and time again that I am not against people becoming wealthy in an open and fair democracy and I think most in this movement would agree with me, but you and I both know that we no longer have a level playing field; and I will also tell you this also - the majority are finally becomming fully cognisent of that fact.
You are correct. Case in point: When Cap and Trade was shot and the fact that not too many in our government are interested in charging corporations that pollute the air anything of consequence. How is it possible that factories such as those owned by the Koch Brothers don't have to pay for the externalities that clean up their own pollution represents. What other industry does not have to pay for the removal of their garbage? I just don't think that people like wigger and smartcapitalist would ever see it this way. Instead , they'll continue to believe that the resources of this world, including the air and the water are infinite. They will fail to see that our planet is a closed system and although water does get filtered and air does get scrubbed, it is the rate at which mankind contaminates both that is the issue. As fresh water becomes harder to find and the air becomes harder to breathe, they will discover their mistakes, because even they won't have enough money to buy clean air and water.
Exactly, and what in God's name gives these people the right to call themselves "Conservatives?" They don't want to conserve ANYTHING!
There was a time when "Conservative" meant something!
You are an idiot. You are trying to say that all of the wealth that the rich have accumulated has done nothing to harm the rest of this nation? Your are completely misled if you believe this B.S.. As for the debt that we've accumulated and the money borrowed by government, who got that borrowed money? Where did all of this borrowed money go? Could that borrowed money have gone the way of the bailouts for banks and other giant corporations, as well as subsidies for oil companies and other sectors like Big Pharma and Big Agri. Please explain where all of this borrowing went and don't say to entitlements, because they don't account for the losses.
You should really stop watching whatever crap news source you are watching or listening to, because they are not telling the truth but they are promoting an atmosphere of political complicity and economic wrong-doing that eerily resembles those practices that caused the Great Depression.
Where did the government spend it money? Nice question and the answer is easy. The government makes full disclosure of where it spends it's money and it does so yearly. You only need to look at the annual budget report to find that. But alas, you probably don't know such a report exists and you wouldn't bother once before making stupid allegations. I am not saying for a second that our politicians are squeaky clean. All I am urging you is to kindly remain within the ambit of facts, may then people will take you more seriously.
As for the so-called bailout, that has long been paid back and with interest at that.
And no I don't watch Fox News.
Yeah, the bailout money was paid back and pretty quickly at that. I wonder why that is, don't you? Maybe those institutions that the tax payers bailed out gambled further on a stock market that had been severely depressed by those same institutions that caused the markets to be depressed in the first place. In the mean time some many people's 401K and other retirement vehicles had lost 30% of their value and were dumped at the bottom. Wake up and question why the banks were able to recover so quickly and return the money so quickly. Where did the money they made after the bailouts come from initially.
Perhaps you're not an idiot, but you are ignorant to what is happening in this country. The super wealthy are leaving everyone else behind, including the wealthy and they are playing a game of poker where the player with the biggest pockets can simply out bid all other players. Look at how the stock market swings on little to no news at all: THINK. If you can buy millions of shares when everyone else can only by thousands of shares, you can whip the market in any direction you choose and it's all legal. Forget morality, because it's not about what's right, it's about what's legal and our political leaders have made certain that the laws benefit the super wealthy.
And don't think you're immune from these attacks if you're in the 1%, because when the super wealthy have extracted everything they can from the poor and the middle class, they will go after the wealthy, at least those who don't have enough money to stop them.
As for your argument that Government spending is rampant and that all of the spending is going to the poor, please provide proof of your claim, because anyone can say that it is the poor who are dragging down our economy, but none seem to be able to provide proof and to think that the money that corporations get in subsidies is any less of a drag than the entitlement programs you seem to want to solely blame is utterly ridiculous. And even setting aside these subsidies, corporations make all of the money that they make and have made all of the money that they made because of the Government. Who gives out the biggest contracts, who protects patents and copyrights, who benefits from so much of this government spending, not only the poor. I work as an engineer consulting on commercial and industrial projects and I have yet to see one single poor person benefit from the extraordinary sums spent on airports, waste water treatment facilities and municipal parks (they homeless and poor are chased out of the parks that I been part of): I even saw eviction notices under walkways on South Beach to kick the homeless out.
The TARP money was paid back from earning or raising capital or even by borrowing from the treasury. As for 401k, they dropped because of the drop in stock market mostly.
The stock market swings because of a whole lot of reasons and that is certainly not because of dumping of shares. Sure that is possible and such an act would drive a stock down but the affect would largely be temporary.
As to where the government spending goes, most of it (other than some related to defense) is tracked down to the penny.
So, where did the banks get all of this capital? It certainly wasn't from selling off parts of their business, because they're bigger now than ever. What comprised the capital that they raised? Please tell me, because I am very interested in this.
Of course 401k dropped because of the market. That's what I said in my post, but what you still have yet to address is the fact that all of those people (who weren't gambling on housing, but supposedly being responsible with their retirement plans) got SHAFTED, because after all of institutional investors (401k, municipal pension plans, etc.) got out, the sharks came in and bought up all of that under-valued stock. Maybe instead of capital, the banks gambled again and jacked the market back up.
As for stocks going up and down is based on buying and selling. The reasons for this buying and selling are varied, but the bottom line is that market prices go up and down based on buying and selling and your statement to the contrary makes no sense.
You also didn't answer the question of where the money for Government spending goes. And since you know so much, or implied in your previous post to know where it goes, why don't you just say where it went? Or were you just talking crap that you cannot and have no intention of backing up with facts?
Maybe you should change your username to dumbasscapitalist. And, yes I did get personal, because it's dumbasses like you who allow our democracy to be used against the majority of the citizens of the USA, which has a personal affect on my life.
The banks filed their returns and it clearly showed where an how they raised the capital (some of it may be private info as well). There is no conspiracy here. Besides, the reason banks paid off TARP money so fast was that the government bought preference shares in the banks for the TARP loan and which is why many banks were reluctant to accept TARP money in the first place. So they paid back all the money as soon as they were eligible to pay it back (the govt has imposed some criteria before banks were allowed to pay it back).
As for the 401k going down, dude there is always some risk in the market. Do not expect it to always go up. If you invest you have to take the risk. Sure, most investors did not really expect a recession and I agree with that.
As to where the government money goes, I really don't understand why you think it's a mystery. The govt has to account for every penny of spending and report to congress and the reports are public. If nothing else, a simple look at GAO site would give you enough info. Do you expect me to distill those reports for you and present it as a forum comment? I would, but I am used to getting paid for that kind of work.
And with all due respect, it is dumbasses like you that made the world wonder if America is a country of whiners and losers who were not smart enough to get a good education and are now whining why their useless degrees dont get jobs. They are also, quite funnily, blaming the banks ffor giving them a student loan in the first place. In fact for people like you there should be a re-education school as well a new department called the Department of Big Decisions which would have to consult by law before you decide to buy anything over $5000 . You would also require to consult the department before getting married or even engage in sex so as to ascertain if you can at all take care of your kids and spouse and provide them shelter and food, lest the end up on food stamps. Dear Sir, you have been found to be lacking severely in common sense and therefore you cannot be allowed to take a loan of $60,000 to study Art History at Harvard. Dear Madam, you are 16 and won't be able to take care of a child, therefore thou shall not fornicate.
You are in the republican bubble my friend. All of the banks acted as they should have, given deregulation and no not all needed TARP, but for you to suggest (by your defense of them) that what they did and what our government did that made their immoral actions legal is the right direction for this country shows more than ignorance or stupidity on your part. It shows that you agree that corporations should be allowed to extract money from everyone without regard to the effect that this will have on the country. Whether you're a democrat or a republican, you have to see that ultimately the policies that have led to an income inequality that is second only to the one that existed the day before the crash of the Great Depression and a wealth inequality second to none in America's history cannot be good for this country.
Everyone knows that there is risk in investment, what they have a problem with is when the risk is one sided. Those with the most money manipulate the markets these days. Markets used to fluctuate based on earnings. Now earnings are tweaked through layoffs (most in most recent years) and other accounting trickery to meet expectations.
This is not a conspiracy, this is what happens and this is one of the reasons there is so much speculation these days. Look at Apple today (Jan 26, 2012) after a stellar Earnings call just two days ago, it's selling off as if it missed earnings by a substantial amount. Why shouldn't these investors have faith in one of the strongest companies on Earth?
P.S. - I hope you didn't buy Apple at $364 or at $358 or at $347 or at all since Wednesday morning. Same goes for NFLX which is selling off after speculators took their profits at $119
If you don't know the difference between right and wrong than you probably wouldn't recognize immorality.
The causes for the Great Depression were inequality and deregulation and the inequality in income has not been as high as it is since the Great Depression and your claim of 1993 and 2003 are included in the past 25 - 30 years that deregulation, union busting and wealth inequality have existed so you're proving the point that inequality leads to instability, which will continue until the imbalance is reversed as it was after the Great Depression. With laws such as Glass-Stegall, America's economy thrived and grew as well as its citizens. Now, we have a country that can no longer serve as an example to the rest of the world.
You are wrong about the stock market being immune to manipulation: Just look at the 'Fat Finger" incident that happened last year as proof. One to a couple of zeros off and the market collapsed.
Apple selling off is expected, but a $20 drop the very next day after such a glowing earnings call.
Oil is subsidized, so a true comparison of companies would have to take into account those funds and GE was bailed out. Was Apple ever subsidies or bailed out in any way similar to GE or Exxon.
I wasn't asking you disclose anything, just making an observation.
Honestly, just between you and me and OWS, where do you think all of the crazy swings in the market last year came from? And how does this type of market movement serve institutional investors and more importantly, the clients of institutional investors. Do financial advisers actually serve a purpose, because win or lose, they make their commission?
Please stop getting on the moral high horse. Anyone can claim moral superiority just like Pastor Haggard or Osama. Right and wrong are very subjective.
Deregulation has very little to do with great depression
Shocks in stock markets are very temporal.As for the May 6th incident, there is vvery little possibility of the whole 'fat finger' myth. Trading systems have enough safe guards to prevent exactly this kind of thing. Besides, even after this incident the markets started gaining from the next day itself.
$20 drop and then rise. It goes on
Do fin wizards serve a purpose? Yes, we get paid based on profits we make. If you lose money, you are screwed. And if you lose money too often you lose clients and go out of business. It's just like any other business.
Whatever it takes for you to sleep well at night. Justify, justify, justify. It's funny that I guessed your were a financial adviser. No need for further discussion with you. You'll just justify everything Wall Street does.
There was a good article (video) in the New York Times yesterday that explained how manufacturing jobs paid more: for 1000 manufacturing jobs, 3000 more jobs were created; whereas those jobs were exported and now most jobs created in the US are service jobs, which do not pay as well or spin-off more jobs.
EDIT: Front-page story today (Sunday) about it: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/22/business/apple-america-and-a-squeezed-middle-class.html?_r=1&hp
Thanks, that does account for some of the problem, I think.
That would be my interpretation, but I would really like to hear a Nobel Prize economist on the subject. It actually does puzzle me to some degree that such great advances in economic efficiency have not brought advances in wealth. Personally, I can only conclude that we are underestimating the amounts of wealth owned by that miniscule minority. I mean think about in - generations of increasing productivity and declining wages in a nation the size of ours: where the hell is all that money?!!
I agree. In my mind we should all, all, be working 3 days a week and earning enough money to not be in debt at all, not for our homes, not for college education for our kids, for no reason. What went on here that we got to this place?
Yes, I would really like to hear Krugman on this issue of rising productivity and lowering wages, and why that has not resulted in financial surpluses. It should have. We should all be just where you have said we should be, working three day weeks with a high standard of living.
That was what we were told we were going to have when we sacrificed our land, our farms, our economic independence to the corporate system. We traded that independence for a kick in the pants, and I want to know exactly how that happened!
Why don't you write to him? You can probably email him through the NY Times. It's a great question and he'd be a great person to answer it.
Yes, I'll try to do that.
You could send him a copy of this thread or the link. I think he'd be interested.
I'm sorry, I'm too much of a techno-jerk to figure that out. I guess he's at Princeton - I could try sending it there, if I can find the link. I doub the NYT would get it to him. Maybe I'll send him a letter at Princeton.
Another question to be posed to Paul Krugman and other erudite economists, to please explain the following credo of Central Banks in today's world.
“Central bank independence has established itself over the past decades as an indispensable element of the monetary policy regimes of mature and emerging economies. The decision to grant central banks independence is firmly grounded in economic theory and empirical evidence, both of which show that such a set-up is conducive to maintaining price stability. "
If indeed this can be proven why do central banks not become governmental organizations with the same independence as granted to the judiciary and the profits that central banks make be made over to the Treasury/Finance Ministries. In the transition towards becoming governmental organizations all the shareholders of these banks should be made public, just the minimum requirements of good financial governance.
Such transparency of such financial institutions will ensure faith in the markets and more importantly will initiate some confidence in the people, and deter excess Greed.
Yeah, I also like that question. It seems to me that enonomics is sufficiently complex that you really need the experts to weigh in on the subject sometimes, and in my view Paul Krugman is the only high profile economist who has proven himself sufficiently independent of vested interest to be given serious credence.
Okay, now we have two questions.
His reply will define his credibility. His reply to both questions must encompass how he sees the distribution of wealth through economics, why economic policy as "regulated" by the central banks and “supervised” by government agencies has created a greater economic divide. If he replies that it is due to poor government, he will be partly right, but as a renowned and capable macro economist, he should be in a position to outline what has gone wrong and how it can be set right, including
1) US social policies,
2) the US' geo-political policies (which has bankrupted 99% of US citizens) and its national lobbying policies where democracy is being killed (de•moc•ra•cy : http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/democracy government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system). The elected agencies do not represent their electorate but a few lobbying powerhouses.
3) a revision of its economic and judicial institutions,
4) the breaking-up of big financial monopolies,
5) dealing with global institutions via a global task force and so on.
Nobel laureates are often spokespeople for global interests a 'quid pro quo' policy. Could you imagine some people in South America ever winning the Nobel Peace prize for their work, they did however get the bullet or scholars in South America during the same period pleading for an Economic self-reliance in the region, all they got was dictatorships imposed upon them and supported by foreign powers.
Most of the profits of the federal reserve are transferred to the Treasury. As to why the Federal Reserve is not 'independent' like the Judiciary, well that would require a constitutional amendment. As for banks, any public limited company has to declare it's shareholders.
Are all the shareholders of the Fed known?
If all the "profits" of the Fed are transferred to the Treasury, what do the shareholders of the Fed get?
I understand that the Fed is built along the lines of the Bank of England, the rules there and profit transfers there are somewhat obscure, protected by a Secrecy Law - Medieval times one would think.
The 'shareholders' of the Federal Reserve are banks. These banks don't depend on the Fed for their profits.
So it is an "altruistic" service, with banks I'd be surprised, wouldn't you?
I know the relationship, am just trying to force people to question what many people thought they knew (ie that the Fed was a governmental body which its names misleadingly suggests while they are actually are constituted of private banks (Federal Reserve of NY being their largest shareholder), the presidential appointees are an eyewash and the list of misunderstandings grows)
Please look at the profits the Fed made and how much of it was transferred to the Treasure ($80bn out of $89bn I think, may be wrong pls check). The Fed has both government and private parts. And I am tired of "Fed is a private corporation" propaganda. Pls Understand the whole thing before forming your views.
So the Fed is not private, is that what you are trying to say?
Who cares what he has to say?...He is a brainless puppet of the NY slimes. go get a job gypsy beast.
Thank you for that penetrating analyisis. I'm looking forward to further enlightenment
Seriously...who really gives a rats ass about Paul Krugman's opinion?
well...you are alone on that one.. where do you live? It can't be anyplace interesting, since you find Paul Krugman stimulating.
Yeah, just me and the Nobel Prize Commitee.
what do they know.? Meaningless, corrupt organization..Didn't they give Obama a Nobel puppet prize for doing nothing back in 2009? Your lemming like reverence for this group is evidence of unwillingness or inability to think critically.
Well, they gave Henry Kissinger the Nobel Peace Prize as well, so you have a point there. I think in both cases though, it was more of an intent to push both of these people in that direction, more than an actual recognition of anything they had done.
But the fact is, that if you read Krugman you will quickly discover that he's the only economist around, of any influence, that gives one damn about working Americans.
Thank you for the civilized reply...Maybe I'll do some extra Krugman reading......have a nice evening
WOW! Thank you for that civilized reply!! Maybe there is some hope of finding common ground!!!
You never know. We all are human... and also live on the same planet...so that's a good starting point anyway. All the best to you, talk to you later. You're a good sport Gypsy.
And why? Because of globalization of production.
And globalization of wage rates, and both of these things are the result, to a great degree, of outsourcing both the means of production and labor?
Wage rates across countries would take much much longer to equalize, the gap is narrowing for sure and that is particularly visible in IT.
How on earth is the equalization of wage rates in the interest of Americans?
Depends on how the equalization happens. If we have to come down to third world level wages that would be bad, but, as is happening now, third world wages could rise to our levels and would be a win-win for all
So factor in the billions in the third world and Americans will be competing against them all, having had our education system stripped to the bone, and that is a win win situation?
They already are competing. And we Americans have to compete to win. Unless of course you want to bomb them to the stone age.
No, I think the formula is for 99.9999 percent to be in a race to the bottom and untold suffering, while the new kings watch them die in guarded luxury. And when you look at it that way, I think it would be advisable for the 0.111111% to get real.
Depends on what type of worker you are talking about. The real wages of low skilled workers have fallen or remained staggnant while that of high skilled workers have risen
I mean all workers in aggragate. The productivity of workers in aggragate has risen greatly, while the wages in aggragate have fallen.
Dude, did you not read what I wrote. Not ALL workers have seen drop in wages. Please read it again.
Yes, but that is beside my point. In the aggregate, wages have dropped. I will give you the point that wages have risen for high-skilled workers, although I am not certain that is true. Wages for many skilled positians have certainly dropped since that time.
The wage have dropped for the aggregate so what? If you are analyzing a data set to find answers, aggregation would not get you that. If 2 ppl lose $10 each and 1 guy makes $15, on aggregate it's a loss. Agreed. So? aggregation always hides information.
I would like to find information backing your assertion that wages for skilled labor have risen, adjusted for inflation, in that time frame. I am not convinced that even that is true.
What is undoubtedly true is that the American standard of living has fallen precipitously during that time, even as worker productivity has greatly increased.
We were all told that the reason we should support automation and advanced technology was because it was going to increase our standard of living. Why did that not happen?
And if you are telling me that automation resulted in decreased standard of living then you must be holding the view that standards of living were better during say 1870 or even 1910 etc?
I never said automation resulted in decreased standard of living.
Just a little googling. http://data.newyorkfed.org/research/epr/95v01n1/9501brau.pdf
If I can do it, sitting at my desk on a Sunday morning, so can you.
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boiler plate disclaimer. Big deal.
Official reports don't come with the disclaimer while political pontification does.
yes, as stands you gave me the opinion of David A. Brauer and Susan Hickok They have been trying to sell that horse shit for awhile now. I wonder who finances them and gains from their analysis.
That's the problem with Occutards. When you provide them with correct information they would simply not accept. Anything that does not agree with their stupid world view is conspiracy. There are hundreds of papers written on this. I am not interested in continuing this discussion. No point talking to fools
hay smartass, you have heard of regulatory capturing have you not? Besides, let us say it were legit. a lot has changed since "FRBNY ECONOMIC POLICY REVIEW / JANUARY 1995. For starters, Greenspan no longer dictates the findings of the board.
I don't understand. Please elaborate.
low or no skill jobs get replaced by automation. Those workers are growing in numbers because the population is growing in general. This drives wages down for low & no skill jobs that are shrinking because of automation. The only way to keep up & not fall behind is to get increasingly higher skills that are more rare. Higher & higher skills = fewer & fewer people capable of performing these skills = increased demand = higher wages.
So what you are saying then, in essence, is that technology has been an overall negative as far as most workers are concerned?
standing pat is going backwards - another way to look at it.
it is a negative if you want to stay doing what you are doing and watch the world pass you by without ever improving your skills to keep up.
Endlessly retraining oneself for ever more complex employment then is condusive to human happiness?
yes - Is just sitting there not bettering yourself or reaching your full potential conducive to happiness? Are you saying that you should be able to stay at a minimum wage type job forever, have other peoples wealth re-distributed to you, so you can be happy?
I think there are a lot of things that humanity can do to reach their full potential rather than constantly retraining themselves in order to serve the interests of those who have no interest in them. I beg to differ here.
You are serving your own interest. It is called survival. You cant expect others to supplement you while you find your full potential as a rock star. You alone are responsible to take care of yourself. Anything after that - do it in your spare time like the rest of us. Some people like to play golf. Should they be supplemented by the public to work on their golf game & work as a grocery clerk?
Well, if all it is is a matter of survival, with no concern whatsoever for justice - if all it really is, is the law of the jungle, than no one could really complain if the 99% ate the 1%.
Personally, I think that's no way to run a civilization. But if that's what they are determined to thrust upon us, well, so be it.
Define "justice" ? How has someone done an injustice to you? How is it justice for some else who is working mind you - supplement your lifestyle?
Justice, as my friend therising put it so well, is love on the level of society. Although plenty of injustice has been done to me on a personal level, I am not talking about just "me." That is a concept certain people apparently don't understand. You see, some people are incapable of empathy. That is a mental disorder. I feel sorry for them, but I will not willingly let them impose their psychosis on me, or upon 99.99999% of humanity. You see, they consider the survival of others an entitlement, and their own luxury a right.
The survival of other is up to them. The luxuries I earn in life are my right not yours.
That depends on what you did to earn them.
Not all 1% are crooks. In fact the vast majority of them are not.
Who says you have to work as the middle class or even the affluent class? Why can't you be happy with minimum wage? Nobody forced you to jump on the hamster wheel. Free will is a bitch. Even more so than free trade.
sure nobody is forcing you to work or do anything. Just dont expect a handout from the people who are working. Food stamps and homeless shelters that's about all you should expect the taxpayer to subsidize. Even that use to be handled by charities. Now everyone feels entitled.
You are the one who feels entitled. You feel like you should own a lexis (or insert any of the million other enmities) and not pay taxes. You need to really stop being so greedy.
I am happy to pay taxes to run the government's legitimate functions . I am not happy to pay taxes to supplement other peoples choices in life. I want to be a rock star too. So can I work on my guitar playing skills full time & have other people pay my bills? What if everyone did that?
And who gives you the right to judge what is legitimate and what is fluff? Who died and made you Congress.
The Constitution does.
As you said, "A group of 536 people decide what is in the best interest of the "General Welfare" and you don't need a Constitution to protect the people. Then you have 9 justices to confirm it." That is how it has went down for two hundred and some odd years. Why should our generation be any different?
that is not how it went down for 200 years. when Congress wanted to change the Constitution it use to require an Amendment. Now they pass whatever they want an an activist court affirms it. We've gone from applying the constitution to interpreting it. Basically they have been using it as toilet paper ever since FDR packed the court to pass his unconstitutional social experiments.
well, You are simple. I knew you were going to go there. It is too bad five people can read a document and come to five different conclusions, especially if they don't live in the era that the Constitution was written in. My understanding of the General Welfare Clause and the Commerce Clause trumps your understanding, especially if i get a majority to see it my way. Them the rules, dog.
general welfare clause - if interpreted the way you do - the rest of the constitution would be unnecessary. A group of 536 people decide what is in the best interest of the "General Welfare" and you don't need a Constitution to protect the people. Then you have 9 justices to confirm it. Commerce clause the same thing. Your interpretation lets the Feds regulate whatever they want. What do you need after that. This violates the very thing the founders were trying to prevent. Are there any limits on Federal Power? Please explain where the limits are under your interpretation of things.
"We believe that if men have the talent to invent new machines that put men out of work, they have the talent to put those men back to work." ~John F. Kennedy
and? whats your point?
ok awkward moment. I noticed you talking about jobs being replaced with automation and I just like the quote. : )
Don't many other western countries have better vocational training opportunities for their youth. In this country, it seems widely accepted that if a young person doesn't go onto a four year university, he/she will be a failure.
If you look at what sustained this economy in the ten years prior to the 2008 crash, it was the unustainable housing market. All the while we shipped more and more jobs overseas. My question is, is there something out there that I am not seeing that will get us near to full employment anytime soon?
There's only two viable opportunities I see for increasing employment. Innovation and consumer confidence.
Innovation is probably more of a long term solution which will require increased investment in education or other government investment in the country, such as the NASA program when it was started. But who knows, the next big thing (like computer technology) could be right around the corner.
Consumer confidence is more complicated. And probably alot of increased consumer spending is not a good idea right now as many consumers would be better off paying down their debt.
A less viable and certainly controversial option is government stimulus. Other than that, we just have to slog our way through this cycle.
There are plenty of vocational opportunities here. Just because something is "widely accepted' doesn't mean you have to follow the heard off a cliff. Even still - We are shifting focus - if you have skills you will have an opportunity at higher wages. If you dont you will fall behind. It is that simple. The higher the skills the higher the pay. Supply & demand
I agree with you partly I think. But I'm not sure our educational system has kept up, preparing our workforce for the changing environment. Because of globalization and outsourcing. The HS Diploma is now equivalent to less in terms of job opportunity. The new HS Diploma is now a 4 year degree. The old 4 year degree is now a 6 year degree. And the cost of college education is farther out of reach for many people.
yes - education is a racquet. you don't need a 4 year degree - there are plenty of trades that don't require a 4 year degree.
Give me an example of the trades you mean? And what are the advancement opportunities.
What about the percentage of the population that are not mentaly capable of getting a higher education but are hard workers and can build your homes, roads, etc, do we not deserve a living wage.
Of course. That's hard and admirable work. There will always be demand for that. And to make more demand (higher wages) for that, higher education needs to be financially accessible for those that have the abilitiy and desire to pursue it.
secretary, paralegal, auto mechanic, HVAC technician, xray tech, sonogram tech, many medical tech's, Administrative assistant etc. Truck driver. pharmacy tech. Not sure what you mean by advancement opportunities. that comes with more training. Paralegal takes 2 yrs community college degree. you can make up to 100K. If you want more - go to law school. etc.
Secretaries and admin assistants are practically obsolete and have been for a long time. The traditional trades, construction, plumbing, heating, HVAC, not much opportunity for advancement. Of course they're necessary and valuable jobs, but there's only so many of those to go around. They can't be outsourced, but they are highly susceptible to downturns in the economy. Paralegal is not going to advance without law school. Medical techs, not going to advance without college probably. I'm not saying these aren't good fields, but there is a problem with college affordability.
Many traditional bluecollar, HS diploma type jobs, have been outsourced. More and more jobs like computer programming are being outsourced. There is less opportunites available to those with a HS diploma. There is becoming less opportunities available for those with a 4 year degree.
The only way to keep up, like you said earlier, is to increase your skills. This would imply college education. And college is farther out of reach for many people.
So the goal is a career with "advancement". Sorry - I thought the goal was to keep yourself from being in a low skill or no skill minimum wage job. Secretaries and Admin assistant are plentiful occupations that pay pretty darn well. Look in the NY Times help wanted section and you will see.
I totally reject the notion that a four year college degree is out of reach for many people. State college tuition is a total bargain. And if you are that destitute - there is financial aid, loans etc. Please - I worked my way through college as a bartender & paid cash.
As far as "advancement" for tradespeople - it's called going into business for yourself. I know plenty of home improvement contractors that do very well. Always busy.
What kind of la-la land are you living in? College costs have risen 1025% since 1980. Tuition rose 8% last year at public universities. By what measure is this a bargain?
Yes advancement. Shouldn't everyone try to continually better themselves? As one level of workers moves up, it makes room for new entry level workers.
Secretaries and Admin assistants - are there 1.7million of these jobs available in the NY Times jobs section? Because that is how many clerical positions were eliminated due to the recession. And it is unlikely that all of these will come back. Over a 30 year period, this has been in decline. One that was a good opportunity for someone with a HS diploma in the past.
Somehow I managed to work through college & pay my tuition in cash. the State University is very affordable. How about a student loan? how about working full time & taking classes & night, summer sessions etc. Whatever it takes to succeed. All I here from you is excuses about how the world is so cruel. Your problem is you are worried about 1.7 million clerical jobs when all you should be focused on is One ! The one you are trying to get. Sorry - but this is pathetic.
I expect job opportunites to come back when consumer confidence increases. How can we have any confidence in a financial system and economy that was nearly destroyed by Wall Street? I'll feel alot more confident about our country and economy when Glass-Steagall is re-enacted. I'll feel alot more confident when there is regulation of derivatives so banks aren't behaving like crazed casino operators on steriods.
I'll be alot more confident when we end the corruption of government and get real campaign finance reform. Getting money out of the political system. And all of the monied influence that flows from lobbyists, PACs, SuperPACs.
There should be higher taxes on the wealthy that are reinvested in the country to create jobs like the WPA did under The New Deal in the '30's. Rich people will still be very rich and can pay a little higher tax rate, and will still have money to make investments. That the middle class is struggling, only serves to limit the profits of the wealthy (lack of demand for goods and services) and puts financial pressure on government programs. Much better that the middle class is helped to thrive and prosper. This benefits all of society, including the wealthy.
Financial reforms that would limit/discourage high frequency trading, such as a Robin Hood Tax. Like the Tobin tax that is being proposed in France, which hopes to pass this year and is also being looked at by the US and Germany.
Investigation and prosecution of Wall Street crimes in the financial crisis. I'll be alot more confident when Wall Street is held accountable for their actions in destroying the economy.
Further government investment in education to increase innovation. So long as there is lack of innovation for investors to invest in, there will be continued market speculation as a way to make money the easy way - where bankers behave like crazed casino operators on steriods. Wall Street is known to create bubbles for their own financial gain at the detriment of the economy.
End corporate tax loopholes. Sen Carl Levin's Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act which would increase tax revenues by $100Billion/yr.
End oil and gas speculation which is driving up prices on already struggling middle class families. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rep-bernie-sanders/stop-oil-speculation-now_b_877739.html
Ending government corruption is probably the most important first step. They rest are just some random ideas of what is possible after.
A final bit of advice: You have too much time on your hands. Spend your time becoming a marketable employee and you will be much better off. By what you have shown me - I'd never hire you. Good luck.
Just what I thought. Ha ha ha, you are the funny one. And you have nothing but more ad hominem. : )
You respond with ad hominem. That's weak. Attacking the proposer instead of the argument.
You shouldn't make assumptions about people that you just met on an internet forum. You know nothing about me. Where do you get the impression that I'm not well off? You assume that I need a job. Truth is, my husband makes a good living. It affords me the luxury of a very comfortable lifestyle in which I don't have to work. So there ya go, Mr.Know-it-all ad hominem maker person.
Attack the argument not the proposer. You don't have one thoughtful response to any of my ideas? Make an argument against, if you disagree, tell me why. I'm a good listener. I have lots of time on my hands. : )
Or even, lets hear your ideas for improving the economy. Or is your single idea the secretarial positions listed in the want ads of the news paper?
Ah - there's my favorite liberal phrase you all love to use "ad hominem" lol! now I know you are a true self loathing drone lol!!!
You worked your way through college. Well good for you Mr.Fancy Pants. So do lots of people today also. So do lots of people today have student loans that they are unable to pay back because of lack of opportunities.
When you graduated, how long ago was that, like a zillion years ago, when job opportunities were plentiful? What was the unemployment rate when you graduated college? Was there a deep recession when you graduated? Was our country in 15trillion dollars of debt when you graduated? You are out of touch. You seem to be afflicted with a mental break from reality.
I'm worried about lack of opportunities in our country because of the extraction of wealth caused by outsourcing. I'm focused on not myself, but the billions of dollars that will be spent this election cycle which enables our representation to be sold to the highest bidder.
Are you so far removed from reality that you are unaware of the middle class wage stagnation over the past 30 years? Are you so far removed from reality that you are unaware of the Citizens United ruling? I'm sure you're a smart guy. Do some research.
Wake up and smell the concentration of wealth by the 1% of Americans, individuals and corporations, who buy their representation in government and benefit from policies in their favor which they have bought and paid for.
Our country is an oligarch. Sorry, but pathetic is when you don't realize this.
how do you expect job opportunities to come back?
I realize that more and more tech jobs are being oursourced, and that fact means that we have to become better educated and more innovative to successfully competete in the world's economy. I just can't help but think that we might be over outsourcing ourselves to the point of not having the chance for an economic recovery any time soon. Should we at least think about slowing this trend, or should we just learn to live with it and see what happens?
We should have better trade policies, that are fair. China, for one, manipulates its currency, to the detriment of American workers. Tech jobs being outsourced to India, is a little tougher. I'm not sure we can stop, or even if it would be good to try to stop the lower skill tech work from being outsourced. It just means that we have to step up our own education and innovation to offset it.