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Forum Post: Are You Rebels or Revolutionaries? Choose revolution: Replace Capitalism with Democracy

Posted 2 years ago on Oct. 12, 2011, 3:06 a.m. EST by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Is this is a rebel movement or a revolutionary movement? Rebels oppose the existing order. Revolutionaries propose a new one.

The tea party has a simple demand: Get government out of the economy so we can have pure capitalism.

It would be truly revolutionary if OWS had a similarly simple but opposite demand: Get capitalism out of the economy so we can have pure democracy.

If we replaced capitalism with democracy:

  • Everyone in society would be wealthy as a birth right
  • You would get paid an income of at least $115,000 per year
  • The work week could be cut in half
  • People would no longer have to do menial work
  • There would be no difference between work and play
  • Interest would be eliminated which would cut your mortgage in half
  • Crime would be virtually non-existent
  • We could fast-track the transition to a green, renewable economy
  • You would get paid to go to school, not the other way around
  • There would be no such thing as recessions or unemployment
  • And nearly every social problem we have would be gone

CAPITALISM IS A SYSTEM OF INEQUALITY

Let's be clear. Capitalism is a system of concentrating power. The goal is to maximize your individual wealth. And the more income you have, the easier it is to generate more income. And with that income comes the power to control everything.

It is a system designed to produce unequal and bad outcomes.

That inequality has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

Just in case you missed that, 97% OF ALL WORKERS MAKE A BELOW AVERAGE INCOME.

Most of those people are responsible, competent, hard-working people. They are just victims of an unfair economic system.

The system simply does not work. So we should do what has been proposed for the past 250+ years by some of the most brilliant, well-respected thinkers to walk this planet like Thomas Paine, John Stuart Mill, George Orwell, Martin Luther King, Albert Einstein and current Senator Bernie Sanders. We should replace capitalism with democracy.

DEMOCRACY IS A SYSTEM OF EQUALITY

Democracy is a Greek word that means people power. It is a system where power rests with everyone equally. It is the exact opposite of capitalism.

A democratic economic system simply means we have equal economic power. Incomes - your source of economic power - are equal.

Just like you get equal votes in a democratic government, you get equal dollar votes in a democratic economy. However, since income is a way to compensate work, equal income means you get equal pay for equal work.

If income was allocated democratically, and people were no longer treated like heads of cattle where your entire standard of living and quality life is dictated by your ability to sell yourself in a market you have very little power over, everyone would be wealthy. There would be no poverty or middle class or homeless or uneducated. And there would be little crime.

Our income is allocated so unequally that if we just allocated total income equally to every worker, regardless of what job they did, EVERYONE WOULD GET PAID $127,000 PER YEAR. That is more than what 97% of all workers currently make.

But the only fair, democratic way to allocate income is to pay an equal income for equal effort. Income should not be based on privilege, who you know, what family you were born into or how lucky you are in the market.

Effort is just a function of the amount of time you work and whether the job you do is mentally or physically difficult. People who work twice the hours should obviously get paid twice the income. And people who work the difficult jobs, the jobs in science, computers, engineering, medicine, construction, mining, or farming, should get paid more than the people who work jobs that are not difficult.

The final compensation plan would be directly voted on by the population, but if you paid difficult jobs twice the amount as jobs that are not difficult, since that is likely enough of an incentive to get people to do more difficult work, based on the American economy in 2010, that system would pay an income of $230,000 PER YEAR FOR THE DIFFICULT JOBS and $115,000 PER YEAR FOR THE REST OF THE JOBS.

Allocating incomes equally based on effort is the only fair way to compensate people. If two workers are successfully completing the job they were hired to do, they are both working the same hours and they are both working jobs of similar difficulty, they both deserve the same pay.

If you do not do the job you were hired to perform because of incompetency or laziness, you should be fired.

If people do not buy the good or service you are working on, it should stop being produced and you should stop being paid. You should then be forced to find a new job working on something people are buying.

How 2 cut the work week in half:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/are-you-rebels-or-revolutionaries-choose-revolutio/#comment-71303

656 Comments

656 Comments


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[-] 3 points by gawdoftruth (3698) from Santa Barbara, CA 2 years ago

the system we have is corporate oligarchy. capitalism has never existed and probably can;t actually exist.

its just the name of the game they play in the rigged corporate oligarchy casino.

other than that your bit is brilliant and i love it thanks.

[-] 2 points by convertiblecaddy (89) 2 years ago

Damn right

[-] 1 points by ediblescape (235) 2 years ago

Wikipedia is doing part of these.

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

I don't know what that comment means.

[-] 1 points by Wildcat682 (178) 2 years ago

LMAO, you are a complete MORON!!

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

Do you have any actual points to make or are you only capable of name calling like a 6-year-old?

[-] 1 points by Wildcat682 (178) 2 years ago

Oh I have several points I could make about your post, but I'll just point out how wrong you are on the first major point.

Democracy does not equate to equality. Democracy is mob rule. The rule of the majority. Democracy ALWAYS benefits the majority to the detriment of the minority.

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

Democracy is not mob rule or rule of the majority. It is a Greek word for people power. It means power rests with everyone equally.

Democracy is not a Greek word for majority or voting or mob rule.

And equal power means, among other things, equal treatment under the law.

So two wolves and a sheep cannot vote to eat the sheep for dinner because that would violate the sheep's equal right to treatment under the law. The law protects the rights of the minority to the same degree as the majority.

[-] 1 points by Wildcat682 (178) 2 years ago

"So two wolves and a sheep cannot vote to eat the sheep for dinner because that would violate the sheep's equal right to treatment under the law. The law protects the rights of the minority to the same degree as the majority."

LOL what a load of crap. If you believe that you are full of crap. So how then is a law passed in a democracy?

So by your example you could say that in a democracy 2 non-smokers and a smoker cannot vote to ban smoking in public places because to do so would violate the smoker's equal right to treatment under the law.

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

Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It means power rests with everyone equally.

But the power to do what?

The modern understanding of a liberal democracy is a society where everyone has an equal right to freedom. That means everyone in a democracy has an equal power to act.

So in a society with full democracy, the supreme law of the land would be:

"Everyone has a birth right to the equal freedom to act - to pursue their happiness however they define it - without political coercion or restraint and without economic coercion or restraint so long as they do not reasonably violate that same right in others."

Everyone would be treated equally under that law.

So it is not reasonable for you to have the freedom to kill me because that would violate my freedom to live.

It may be reasonable for you to have the freedom to kill me, even though that would violate my freedom to live, if I threatened to kill you first.

It may not be reasonable for you to have the freedom to put a 20 foot billboard on top of your house because that would violate my freedom to view the ocean it would block.

It may not be reasonable for you to have the freedom to smoke because that would violate my freedom to breathe fresh air.

[-] 1 points by IndenturedNation (118) 2 years ago

Thank about what would happen if everyone were suddenly given enough money to retire. No one would work. No goods or services would exist. What would you spend it on? It would be pointless.

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

So you think everyone who makes at least $115k is retired!?! That makes no sense.

[-] 1 points by IndenturedNation (118) 2 years ago

If you are suggesting that the 115k be new money then I do agree that we need some way other than the Federal Reserve for new money to enter the economy. This actually is called Populist Economics, and is based on the only set of economic principles that the Federal Reserve does not consider(because they would have to raise lending rates sky high). Populist Economists have proposed many times over the years that every time someone turns 18 some amount of new money should be printed and granted to them. Congress does have the power to legislate new money and has during war. There are many other alternate paths for new money that have been considered as well.

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

The $115k and $230k incomes are based on our existing total income. No money needs to be printed. And you need to work in order to receive those incomes.

[-] 1 points by IndenturedNation (118) 2 years ago

New money will always be printed as the economy grows. I believe it should not just go to the bank's lending system, but some portion should also to the citizens directly.

[-] 1 points by alfi (469) 2 years ago

Has anyone stopped to notice how incredibly joyous these days are? I haven't felt so hopeful in all of my life I think!

[-] 1 points by alfi (469) 2 years ago

This is a HUGE idea and should be discussed INTENSELY. It is the natural next paradigm of Humanity. The vehicle to get us there is Informed Direct Participatory Democracy Online and everywhere. With it we can continuously polish this idea and make it real together. As it stands written here, just as my demand stands written on this forum, the writing is imperfect, it's limited to the abilities of the individual who wrote it. It has flaws of expression, but not of content. The people together should work to polish the ideas that pop up and bring them closer to their brilliance, while concentrating on the IDEA and how to eliminate its flaws, not try discredit it by discouraging people with the flaws.. I think real Democracy is the vehicle by which we could make a world similar to the one hinted in this post.

http://occupywallst.org/forum/i-demand-informed-direct-democracy-online-whos-wit/

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

Is there any real push/interest by the OWS movement for an alternative to capitalism?

I think people love the concept. But they are not going to embrace an idea by some random guy in a random post on the internet (this idea is actually sound, is not mine and has been developed by some past intellectual powerhouses).

I think we need to get current powerhouses behind it to give it legitimacy. Once it has legitimacy it will begin to gain popularity. Once it gains popularity the momentum will be unstoppable because this idea significantly improves most people's lives.

[-] 1 points by alfi (469) 2 years ago

You're absolutely right! I thought that's what I was trying to do, but I only started 5 days ago, and I have bills to pay and work and can't do any more than I am to try to catch the eye of people with resources and the power and reputations to push this.

[-] 1 points by gardenguy (27) 2 years ago

As a way of re-implementing Democracy over the current corporatocracy, where corporations are judged to be "citizens" ready and able to trample over we the people, perhaps we should consider implementing a grass roots, purple finger vote within Occupy as a way of building a much needed consensus on the issues here at hand. People seem to be losing interest as we have so far yet to develop a coherent voice..

[-] 1 points by abmebratu (349) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

The very concept of Capitalism and Democracy has disappeared

[-] 1 points by TheEconomist (12) 2 years ago

I have studied economics at a post graduate level and am on my way to completing my doctoral thesis. While doing all my studies and research so far I have come to accept RBE to be a viable alternative. Some of the Austrian economists maintain their position about the monetary system as the final frontier of human society. The thing is humans are the only species in the universe who use money to live on their planet. Things like value for goods and services in terms of economics have a very limited frame of reference. For example we value diamonds at a conspicuous level and have put a high price tag due to its scarcity. But is a diamond really valuable? It is just a worthless piece of stone with no actual value whatsoever. In addition to that it is responsible for the deaths of thousands of labourers who are exposed to inhumane conditions, destruction of eco-system diversity (3000 plant and animal species are directly effected) and high energy consumption (for artificial diamonds).

This among various other applied examples suggests that money has no purpose in identifying the actual value of any good or service. value is a subjective term that can be manipulated by advertisements, popular culture, traditional beliefs etc. So, as a professional economist I say, "Economics as a discipline is nothing but bullshit and should be done away with". As to those who still advocate or think in terms of free market economy, capitalism, communism, socialism, statism etc. know there there is no such thing. It is just human construction based on semantic understanding. A proper way to go about is to know more about nature and natural law. Not man made constructions that are subject to individual interpretations. The methods of science through uninterpretable data (meaning same results from tests conducted) is the best option for our species. When plants grow, they don't pay for their existence. They are the most scientific creatures and their level of understanding their environment is beyond human ingenuity today. They have highly computerized mechanism of sensing and remote sensing. It is through the laws of nature that we humans get all our information. So it is not us who are the intelligent creatures. We need to learn more from nature as to how they function in a neural network and get by without the use of money. How they give and take in a highly advanced form of communication system and not in the conventional sense of barter.

Therefore, a RBE is a definite system that uses non-established evolutionary perspective to attain resources for the human species to "get by" keeping in mind the "standard of living" and proper resource management. Oh and yeah..."I have checked and found that it is technically achievable but socially a little bit difficult but not impossible".

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

I find it hard to believe that you really are getting your doctorate in economics and yet mention Austrian economics and an RBE, two ideas that are correctly rejected by informed economists and for good reason.

[-] 1 points by CapitalismRulesPeriod (160) 2 years ago

democracy is a goverment system and capitalism is an economic system so you can't sub a goverment system for an economic one

[-] 2 points by DemandTheGoodLifeDotCom (3213) from New York, NY 2 years ago
[-] 1 points by Vegas2121 (5) 2 years ago

Don't Be Afraid To Call It A Revolution!

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

People have to understand that socialism does not have mean Cuba, or the USSR, or China (I don't see how anyone could make that mistake) or any of the current "socialist" models for society. Socialism is an extremely broad theory, ranging from authoritarian versions of socialism like those found in the USSR (horrible no doubt, they contradict the basic values of socialism) to libertarian socialism, advocating little to no government, in the case of the anarchists, with a society run democratically by its people.

People need to understand socialism before they critique it, and if you do not know this basic distinction I recommend you do more listening than you do talking.

Also, on a side note, there is no need that money, in the traditions sense of the word, has to be a medium for exchange. Socialism does not mean equal pay while maintaining the current social relationships we have. Socialism is a radical restructuring of society which changes ever aspect of it, production, exchange, politics, family relations, education etc.

[-] 1 points by dannyfree34 (1) from New York, NY 2 years ago

You make some good points but "democracy" can have different meanings. Capitlaism is an economic system in which production is organized on the basis of private ownership of the means of production and the hiring of labor for a wage. Production only takes place for private proprofit, not for social need. Capitalism, whether nominally "democratic" or not cannot satisfy the needs of the use of labor and resources to the utmost in the interest of the"99%% and has a future of increasing impoverishment of the 99% , the destruction of past gains of the international working class (including programs like Medicare, Social Security) and the threat of another World War and nuclear aniahlation! It must be replaced with socialism--- an international planned economy based on soocialized (collective) production and distribution to satisfy and expand human needs-- the antithesis of Capitalism. This necessarily requires real democracy, i.e ., workers democracy with decision making by the 99%. I suggest you read Marx and Engels analysis starting with Karl Marx's "Capital", Vol.1. "Democracy" does not exist outside an econmic system The great French and American revolutions establshed "democracy" in form of constitutional republics, in UK a Parliamentary democracy Monarchist, not Republican in form) but this democracy is "capitalist democracy" in which "freedom" is available for those who have private accumulations of wealth and control the system of "free enterprise". The only "democracy" that can benefit all of society and save us from destruction is "workers democracy" based on the public (i ,e, democratic) onership of the means of production and an international planned economy. That is the meaning of Socialism and it's realiztion is a "political" question--ultimately, the question of "power" which is what politics is about.

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

this sound more like socialism. And as a person, who grew up in last decade of Soviet Union, I wouldnt recomment going with such utopic ideals. But I do agree that corrution and lobbism in US goverment need to be stopped and if it takes closing bank accounts and going cash and local, then I am down for that. Just please, dont bring unrealistic ideas that already have proven unucheivable and dangerous, because every time anybody tried to bring in income equality, they only ended up concentrating power in the hands of those who collect and spread the goods. Lets just do a simple step of just making it difficult for big financial cororations to buy the oliticians by withdrawing the means to buy from them.

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

Since income determines your financial power and spending that income determines what is produced, income equality eliminates the concentration of power and decentralizes the decision making as to what gets produced.

Russia was a poor, backwards, undeveloped country run by a brutal dictatorship with no transparency, no accountability and above all, no democracy. It was also a command economy, not a market economy. Bureaucrats decided what you can and cannot have, not consumers.

I don't advocate anything like the soviet system.

[-] 1 points by andrewpatrick46 (91) from Atlanta, GA 2 years ago

Capitalism is an economic system...Democracy is a political system...

What you're saying is like arguing that we should put the square block in the triangle hole..IT'S NOT GONNA WORK!

Jobs aren't difficult and easy...some jobs 10% harder, while others are 20%...

You should go back to school...high school would be a good place to start

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

Your question has been answered several times:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/are-you-rebels-or-revolutionaries-choose-revolutio/#comment-131556

There is no system of measurement that says 1 job is 10% or 20% more difficult than another job.

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

this is so absurd, in so many ways i dont know where to begin-- they should be forced how, at gun point, by who?

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

Who do you think is going to be forced to do what?

[-] 1 points by anamericancitizen (19) 2 years ago

My fellow Citizens,

I do not write as a white man, a black man, a brown man, a tan man, a yellow man, or a red man. I write as a common man. The United States since the Industrial Revolution has experienced one of the biggest leaps in wealth of any nation in the entirety of the world’s history but all have not shared in that wealth. In fact, it is with great sadness that I write this evident truth, the history of the United States is the history of greed. America’s history is the history of the many led by the few. Our history is the history of wolves promising that they are acting in the interest of the lambs. Wolves do not act in the interest of lambs. Wolves act in ways that keep their bellies full. Wolves act in ways that keep the lambs penned in and in a position of sacrifice. Recent events show the rich act not only to remain rich but to become richer at the expense of the working class. The rich have the audacity to twist laws to their advantage with the deviant plan to increase the volume of their voice. The rich and those that act to keep the status quo believe that they have worked harder and God has smiled more favorably upon them than those of the working class and are therefore entitled to their luxuries. Someone, somewhere in this country has a house worth over four million dollars, a vacation home worth over two million dollars, a yacht worth over a million dollars and someplace else a single mother without insurance sits in an emergency room with her two children. Someone, somewhere is receiving a bonus at the expense of a government bailout and someone else, someplace else is having his home foreclosed on because there was no bail out for the common man. I begrudge no man his success but I begrudge every man his greed. There is right and there is wrong. There is justice and injustice. I must step up and let the oppressors know that the oppressed will no longer live in their pens. The oppressed have already sacrificed too much to allow this generation of the rich to continue to exploit my family, my friends, and myself. I was born to the servant class and I have served but I will not allow my children to serve. I pray that my peers wish for the freedom of the next generation. I pray that we are all beginning to realize that those that lead in business and politics have interests that differ from those that work in their factories and are misguided by their political advertisements. Those that govern are different in their principles from those they govern.
Those that lead from the authority of privileged birth do not represent me. Those that lead from deals made with corporations for political funding do not represent me. I am the governed and I no longer give my consent. The common man’s democracy has been usurped by the wealth of an elite few. My role in this system has been reduced to the feudal peasantry. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — 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”
--The Declaration of Independence I love this country and I love those that strive to improve this country and her citizens but the currently employed system of government is not protecting the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and, the pursuit of happiness for the majority of the American people.

With a heavy heart, An American Citizen

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

So long as you have capitalism, you will not have democracy.

Capitalism is a system of inequality. Democracy is the opposite. It is a system of equality.

Income - your source of power - should be allocated democratically and equally.

[-] 1 points by greentara (78) 2 years ago

so every job gets paid what? $50/hour? so many many people would do nothing and just collect the fiddy or is this a case where IF you have a job, its 50/hour, no matter what the job is?

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

Companies will be individually run and managed. So you will need to get hired in order to obviously collect a paycheck. The difference is that a company will no longer be able to pay you less than what the labor standard is. The labor standard will be determined democratically so that everyone gets paid enough to live a wealthy lifestyle and everyone gets an equal pay for equal work. And the economy will invest whatever amount is necessary to maintain full employment.

[-] 1 points by greentara (78) 2 years ago

do you understand that you need savings in order to have investment in the economy? if were all making $50/hour, why save? unless i save money, invest it in a business, hire a bunch of $50/hour people, and earn MORE MONEY!

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

The system will no longer rely on how much you save.

A portion of GDP will be allocated to banks for investment, just like we do now. Those banks will be responsible for investing that money in profitable ventures just like they do now.

If you have an idea for a new business, you will pitch it to banks just like entrepreneurs do now. If it is a viable idea, banks will invest in it just like they do now.

But unlike in capitalism, where the system is not responsible to society, democracy is responsible to society. So the system is responsible for providing full employment. You can only achieve full employment by constantly launching new businesses.

And to make sure there is a constant stream of unemployed people to work at the new businesses that are growing our economy, managers at existing companies will have a mandate to automate as much as possible.

This system will create a more dynamic economy than a capitalist economy because we are deliberately making it more dynamic.

[-] 1 points by greentara (78) 2 years ago

so lets be clear, everyone is hired at $50/hour, so everyone makes a good living, so where does this "portion" of gdp come from? GDP is just money, so the money has to come from somewhere? tax on income? tax on sales? what about corrupt bankers getting payola to fund your idea? what about honest but inept bankers, take the money and invest it in boneheaded ideas and lose the money

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

GDP = Investment + Consumption

The incomes mentioned in this post already assume a portion has been allocated towards investment. You need $13.7 trillion in order to pay every difficult job $230k per year and the rest of the jobs $115k per year. $13.7 trillion is the current consumption portion of GDP.

The exact amount of investment will be determined democratically. But it is typically ~15% of GDP. So 15% of total sales will be allocated to banks for investment, the rest would be paid out as consumption income.

If a banker or anyone else somehow manages to take more money than the salary they are entitled to they will be breaking the law and would face prosecution.

Investment banking is a very high skilled job. Their performance, as well as the financial performance of all companies, will be publicly available online in real time. If a bank does not manage their funds well, they will go out of business and will be replaced by a bank that can manage funds better.

[-] 1 points by baketherich (6) from Huntington, WV 2 years ago

Capitalism, democracy, blah blah blah....it's just made up by men. It's not lasting, not permanent.

These systems can change, new ones can be formed, old ones can disappear.

We need a BRAND NEW way of living. I'm sick of these labels.

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

What system can improve on the idea of treating everyone equally?

Equal votes, equal treatment under the law and equal pay for equal work.

[-] 1 points by baketherich (6) from Huntington, WV 2 years ago

Exactly. I totally agree with you. But on these forums, select people are lobbying to either be "socialist" or "anarchist" or a "republic" or a "democracy."

We need something totally new, based SOLELY on human rights. At least get a basic cornerstone of something new set.

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

Replacing capitalism with democracy is replacing capitalism with something based solely on human rights - the right to equality.

[-] 1 points by kpg55 (1) 2 years ago

I get paid $115,000 a year because: I worked my ass off in college to get the necessary skills About 1% of the population can do my job correctly (DB design for CRM systems) The shame of it is that a lot of what you are saying has some merit. But this kind of simplistic dribble dilutes some trully meaningfull dialog.

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

You are not the only person who works their ass off. And the vast majority of the people who work hard get paid a small fraction of what they should. You would get paid $230k in this system, twice what you get paid now.

Calling something simplistic dribble is not an argument.

[-] 1 points by RaySquirrel (4) 2 years ago

In 2007, Swedish statistician Hans Rosling was asked to give a presentation examining how a respect for human rights and democracy relates to economic well being. What he found was not very encouraging for any fan of democracy. As it turns out a countries "level of democracy" has NO effect on the health or wealth of a nation. You can watch that presentation at the following link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QNX31t7Cees

The last ditch argument that I know to save democracy is explored by Michael Shermer in the epilogue to his book “The Mind of the Market.” There he cites political scientist Rudolf J. Rummel study of the 371 wars that were fought between 1816 and 2005: 205 of those wars between non-democratic nations, 166 were between democratic nations and non-democratic nations, and 0 between democratic nations. So if it is any consolation, to our neolithic ancestors who lived in a constant state of war who lived in a constant state of war with themselves and nature, the world we live in today has become a utopia.

What can I say about capitalism that has not been distilled into a trite passive aggressive phase that was not originally referring to democracy. "Two cheers for capitalism (or democracy)" "Capitalism (or democracy) is the worst economic (or political) system invented by man. Except for all the other economic (or political) systems." The reason why they have been so very successful is that they are evolutionary. They are based on a principle of constant process of experimentation and re-evaluation.

[-] 1 points by BHicks4ever (180) 2 years ago

Replace capitalism with socialism.

[-] 1 points by IndenturedNation (118) 2 years ago

You missed the point.

Get capitalism out of the democracy so we can have a pure economy.

[-] 1 points by alfi (469) 2 years ago

YES!

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

What is a pure economy and how would that fix problems?

[-] 1 points by IndenturedNation (118) 2 years ago

A pure economy is a fair and healthy economy, that benefits all of it's participants, not an unfair economy that has been the result of a democracy that has been corrupted by the interference of capitalists. There is no possible way that the foreclosure crisis and the liquidity crisis could have both happened and resulted in no substantive systemic change unless our democracy has become corrupted by capitalists with specific interests. There has been an inexplicable apathy by our so-called elected leaders, not even close to justifiable Laissez-Faire, throughout all of this, that can only be called intentional and corrupt at this point.

[-] 1 points by abmebratu (349) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

Hey I agree with you 100%, but I think you are jumping the gun a little. This will not happen overnight. We need to make some needed changes first. let's be practical my friend.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

In your world of no menial work, who collects the trash and takes it to the landfill? Who cleans the public restrooms? Who cleans the classrooms at your collage? Who cuts the grass at your local park? Who empties the bed pans at the nursing home? And the most important question of all which left wing loony liberal collage are you attending that teaches this wacko bulls--t?

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

55% of the work we do can be automated with existing technology. Read this comment:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/are-you-rebels-or-revolutionaries-choose-revolutio/#comment-71303

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

I read it and its totally bogus. If it would cost less to automate all those job with todays technology it would have been done already. Next!

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

Automated checkout machines cost less than minimum wage cashiers. But the reason why we still have cashiers is because some shoppers prefer cashiers over automated checkout. So if a company got rid of all their cashiers, they would lose customers to the stores that still had human cashiers.

Jobs like sales can also be fully automated without increasing costs. But you will never fully automate sales in a capitalist economy since companies are trying to maximize their sales and there may be no mechanism available in generating sales other than the proactive efforts of a human salesperson.

In a democratic economy, sales generation would be completely different.

The point of production is consumption. The point of advertising is to inform consumers. If your company gets funded, it is because it adds value to the marketplace. So it will be plugged into the infrastructure that is set up specifically to inform consumers of the good's or service's availability and given equal billing among the competitors.

Just like we have common roads that everyone uses, we will have common infrastructure that everyone uses to get informed about making the right purchases.

If you need to beat people over the head in order to get sales, that kind of company will not survive. Marketing is not going to be a system where whoever shouts the loudest wins. Everyone gets fair billing so consumers can make good purchases.

And that entire process of informing buyers and completing thesales transaction can be fully automated.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

"Automated checkout machines cost less than minimum wage cashiers. But the reason why we still have cashiers is because some shoppers prefer cashiers over automated checkout. So if a company got rid of all their cashiers, they would lose customers to the stores that still had human cashiers."

Well that makes sense to me. Why do you have a problem with it?

"Jobs like sales can also be fully automated without increasing costs. But you will never fully automate sales in a capitalist economy since companies are trying to maximize their sales and there may be no mechanism available in generating sales other than the proactive efforts of a human salesperson."

Again, it works for me.

As for the rest of you post. Central planing does not work. Who decides who gets funded? You. Who decides who gets plugged into the infrastructure that is set up to inform consumers? You. Why don't you let each person decide for themselves.

The more you explain your system to me the less I like it. Each person should be free to decide for themselves what is right for them not society.

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

The problem with cashiers is that nobody wants to do that job. People do it out of desperation. And we don't need human beings to do that job. So the whole thing serves no purpose.

I don't advocate central planning.

For the most part, the democratic economy would run largely as it does now. Consumers will decide what is produced based on how they spend their money. Entrepreneurs with new ideas will go to banks for funding. Companies will be individually run and managed. Companies must generate enough revenue to cover expenses in order to stay in business. Managers will be responsible for hiring, firing and company performance. And companies will still compete for your business.

However, there will be three primary differences that make it democratic: 1) Income - your source of economic power - will be allocated equally based on effort, and the final compensation plan will be determined democratically so that everyone is guaranteed a very high income. 2) Investment will no longer come from personal savings. 3) A group of managers will be elected to ensure that the general direction of the economy is also accountable to the public, so that we can, for example, make sure the economy always has full employment.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

I hate to clue you in, since it looks like you gave this a lot of thought, but it won't work. Your not going to tell me how much I can make. I'm going to make all that I can get and the hell with you. I'm not going to roll over for you either. I'll fight any plan that even looks like this crazy plan of yours. That's one. Second, it not going to work because it's total BS central planning. " A group of mangers will be elected to ensure that the..... the people get screwed up the back side. Why don't you use your brains and come up with a plan that one, will work and two increases personal freedom instead of enslaving people to some omnipotent central planner.

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

"Your not going to tell me how much I can make."

This system will likely pay you 3.5 times what you are making now. If you insist on earning a lower income, you can donate your additional income to someone else.

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

"Why don't you use your brains and come up with a plan that increases personal freedom"

Freedom is the ability to act without coercion or restraint. People who have little or no money have little or no freedom to act or do anything.

A poor girl in a capitalist country who cannot afford tuition has the same lack of freedom to an education as a girl in a Taliban ruled Afghanistan village where education for girls is banned.

Your income dictates how much freedom you have. And in capitalism, most of the income and freedom goes into the hands of a very, very small minority.

Only democracy gives you true freedom, because it guarantees you enough income so that lack of income is not a restraint on your life.

You will have far more freedom in a society that pays you $115k or $230k than in a society that pays you $33k.

The billionaires and media personalities, who make hundreds of millions in income (an amount you will never earn), who tell you that the only way the economy can work is if you and 97% of all workers make a below average income and struggle or live in poverty so that they can have most of the income are lying to you. And if you believe them, you are being incredibly gullible.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

I could not afford tuition either back in the day, so what? I'm not crying over it. I don't think anybody owes me anything. They don't. Nobody owes you anything or anybody else anything except to be left alone. That's it. You have no right to make demands on me for anything. Nor does the government. They may have the power but they don't have the right. My income dictates how much freedom I have? I have the freedom to do anything I have the ability to do. That's all I want.

Giving everyone money does not make people rich. As soon as you do that $2.00 loaf of bead will cost $10.00 and I will be no more or less free than I was before. Did you google Andrew Carnegie?

I don't care about billionaires and media personalities if they made their money fair and square and that 97% average income BS is totally bogus. I told you its the median number that counts. And you never answered my question about who will do all the menial jobs that you say no one has to do. Well somebody has to do them, I guess that will be the illegal aliens, you know, with the open borders and all.

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

This isn't about what you are owed. It is about creating an economy that works well for everyone.

This doesn't cause inflation. We are not increasing the total income that is getting paid out. All we are doing is reallocating existing income. So on average, costs will remain the same. And since costs will remain the same, prices will also remain the same.

Billionaires did not make their income fair and square because we live in an unfair economic system. There is nothing fair about how income is allocated.

Total consumption income is $13.7 trillion. Divide that by 100 million full time workers and 35 million part time workers and you get an average income of $127k. You can verify those numbers at bea.gov.

And you can verify the fact that 97% make less than $127k at census.gov.

Most menial jobs can be automated. But even if none of them were automated, whoever wants to work those jobs will work them. Most likely that will be the people who are currently working those jobs.

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (20548) 2 years ago

I'm as outraged at the statistics as you are, but capitalism is an economic system and democracy is a political system. You can't replace one with the other. What you are outlining here is communism.

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

Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a management system where power rests with everyone equally. It can be used to run a government, an economy, a single business, a family, or it can be used to decide what to cook for dinner.

A democratic economic system simply means we have equal economic power. Incomes - your source of economic power - are equal.

Just like you get equal votes in a democratic government, you get equal dollar votes in a democratic economy.

However, since income is a way to compensate work, equal income means you get equal pay for equal work. When income is allocated equally, based on effort, there is enough income to make everyone in society wealthy as a right which solves nearly all the social problems we have.

For the most part, the democratic economy would run largely as it does now. Consumers will decide what is produced based on how they spend their money. Entrepreneurs with new ideas will go to banks for funding. Companies will be individually run and managed. Companies must generate enough revenue to cover expenses in order to stay in business. Managers will be responsible for hiring, firing and company performance. And companies will still compete for your business.

However, there will be three primary differences that make it democratic: 1) Income - your source of economic power - will be allocated equally based on effort, and the final compensation plan will be determined democratically so that everyone is guaranteed a very high income. 2) Investment will no longer come from personal savings. 3) A group of managers will be elected to ensure that the general direction of the economy is also accountable to the public, so that we can, for example, make sure the economy always has full employment.

Capitalism, soviet communism, chinese socialism, fascism, they are all unfair systems of inequality. Liberal democracy is the source of the only good in this world where people are given the EQUAL right to FREEDOM - the freedom to live how you want without political coercion or restraint and without economic coercion or restraint.

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (20548) 2 years ago

I just checked wikipedia. You have me questioning myself. I have a B.A. in economics and an M.A. in world history and you have me questioning myself, LOL! Anyway, I understand what you're saying, but technically, wikipedia agrees with me that there is no such thing as a democratic economy, but I do understand what you're saying. It's a matter of semantics. Hey, I'm open to a new form of political system and economic system. Bring on your ideas. It's great.

[-] 1 points by alfi (469) 2 years ago

Woohhooo!!!

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

This concept has been called many things, historically it has been referred to as democratic socialism. It was advocated for 250+ years by the likes of Albert Einstein, John Stuart Mill, George Orwell, Martin Luther King, Senator Bernie Sanders, Cornel West, etc. The most recent thing published on this in an economics journal is most likely from Paul Cockshott.

[-] 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 is 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 beautifulworld (20548) 2 years ago

You're right. There's been no purely communist society on earth nor purely capitalist.

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

The vast majority of economic activity is capitalist. It is done by private owners of the means of production for a profit.

There is zero communism.

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (20548) 2 years ago

There haven't been any societies with unfettered capitalism, though. Always capitalism with checks and balances.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Okay, so if Company A is a lot more successful than Company B, and so Company B gets shut down, then how does your system help any of the workers at Company B? The only thing that you're going to accomplish is putting workers at Company B out of business sooner, since the company will be forced to pay the standard government-mandated pay scale, regardless of their revenue. That sets the bar for success higher, which makes it harder for companies to stay in business. Youre going to legislate people out of jobs.

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

If consumers do not want to spend their money on Product B, it is because they want to spend it on some other product.

So the employees working on Product B should go work where consumers are choosing to spend their money instead.

The economy will invest whatever amount is needed to maintain full employment. This will keep the economy growing, more efficient and more dynamic than the current economy.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

So your idea is the same as the way that things really work in real life, with survival of the fittest, except that under your system the government would tell every company how much to pay each employee? So your plan actually makes layoffs and "downsizing" worse, since it gives companies no options other than firing people. You're treating the entire labor force of the entire country like it's a labor union, with fixed pay scales.

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

The market is used to allocate goods and services.

If consumers are not willing to pay your price, you need to become more efficient by being able to to produce with less labor. If you are unable to do that the company will be shut down.

Management will be required to constantly look for ways to lay off people. And bankers will be required to always be launching enough new businesses to employ all the newly unemployed.

It is how you grow an economy. It will make it more efficient and dynamic than our current economy.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

All of that is exactly how it already works now!!

You just described how it already works! Wall Street is all about bankers and traders using all of our money to create jobs!

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

That is not how our system currently works. 16% are underemployed. And more importantly, 97% make less than an average income.

For the most part, a democratic economy would run largely as it does now. Consumers will decide what is produced based on how they spend their money. Entrepreneurs with new ideas will go to banks for funding. Companies will be individually run and managed. Companies must generate enough revenue to cover expenses in order to stay in business. Managers will be responsible for hiring, firing and company performance. And companies will still compete for your business.

However, there will be three primary differences that make it democratic: 1) Income - your source of economic power - will be allocated equally based on effort, and the final compensation plan will be determined democratically so that everyone is guaranteed a very high income. 2) Investment will no longer come from personal savings. 3) A group of managers will be elected to ensure that the general direction of the economy is also accountable to the public, so that we can, for example, make sure the economy always has full employment.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

An so the collective will take all unemployed people and simply reassign them to the jobs that are available. So that means that a lot of people will have to re-train for new jobs in different industries. But when I suggested that unemployed people today could benefit without upending the entire economy and replacing it with communism by learning new, marketable skills, you said:

Some people will benefit from learning a different skill. But when you are unemployed, broke or have a family to take of, going to school is not an option.

So in your system, unemployed people would be paid just to go to school?

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

I don't think communism is possible, so I do not recommend upending the economy for communism.

Yes, I think people should be paid to go to school. Going to school is work; it is not consumption.

[-] 1 points by genanmer (822) 2 years ago

Peter Joseph: Message to Occupy Wall Street & The World | The Zeitgeist Movement

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1SQqjTxI3vc

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

Although I agree that we can do better than capitalism, he suggests eliminating money. That would not work.

Goods and services need to be rationed. So you need money to do that. Otherwise, when you make everything free, people will demand far more than you are able to produce.

[-] 1 points by genanmer (822) 2 years ago

That is true, If we simply eliminate money right now without any infrastructure in place to meet the demands of people then we will be forced to ration goods and services.

Part of the transition towards a RBE is increasing the amount of automation for menial tasks and labor. Release people from these occupations as much as we possibly can.

The second part of increasing abundance is utilizing shared access. This is similar to how a library works. Books are loaned out to a community. We can apply the same method for many other items and goods however this requires teaching people how to value sharing stuff over outright owning them. (especially in regards to transportation) *This does not imply forcing people to give up their things.

As for demands, in general people do not have infinite demands. Most do not all share the same preferences. Of course compulsive hoarding will continue until individuals stop feeling threatened by the idea of voluntarily giving up their stuff.

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

I also share your outlook on automation. I believe we can automate 55% of the jobs we do:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/are-you-rebels-or-revolutionaries-choose-revolutio/#comment-79246

And I also think sharing cars once we are able to automate car driving will be an upgrade over car ownership that most people will embrace.

I also think that demand is not unlimited.

But none of that will enable you to eliminate money. People will still demand more than what we can produce. We still need 70+ million full time workers and sharing only works for a limited amount of goods.

Sharing doesn't work for homes, furniture, private kitchens, clothes, music instruments, computers, cell phones, etc.

[-] 1 points by genanmer (822) 2 years ago

This is the point of facilitating a value shift.

Much of our culture is bombarded with tons of advertising which associates their products with social status, procreation, safety, and other desires. As a result, our culture has become materialistic. It has become socially acceptable to hoard (if you possess money). And many tend to hoard stuff because they fear for their survival in this competitive environment. If there was no fear people wouldn't cling to their stuff.

When the culture shifts to promote sustainability, efficiency, collaboration, and autonomy those within the culture will design and obtain products with these values in mind. Social norms will develop (as unwritten rules) creating a completely different environment.

Ontop of this, developing cities with automated sustainability in mind could potentially eliminate many of these problems.

e.g. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bwJaLFMf7IA

How much? No idea. We need to build test cities to understand how well they would function and to correct as many mistakes as possible before implementing them en mass.

Also with money eliminated many jobs within the military, law, advertising, insurance, the arts, entertainment, politics, etc would not be necessary because there is no need to obtain income.

In addition, we also have the option of reforming how professions such as teaching (khan academy), and even healthcare operate (telehealth is becoming more popular). This will cut back necessary positions even further.

Finally technology will continue to advance in order to fill gaps which are currently unfilled.

So the entire culture would shift if we were to transition into a system without money. But again, we need tests, hard evidence, and a plan before committing to it.

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

Using money so that people know EXACTLY how much they can consume will be far more effective at making sure people don't demand more than we can produce than creating a "value shift".

[-] 1 points by genanmer (822) 2 years ago

"So instead of using money to make sure demand equals supply, you think a better method is to change everyone's psychology? You don't think that is crazy?"

As I said, we can use alternative means of measuring our capacity to produce more efficiently. And if sustainable abundance truly can be created which benefits the population, then the people will shift their values accordingly.

In the mean time a value shift is necessary through education. We are trying to teach against years worth of advertising and political propaganda. Yes, many are emotionally invested in the use of money and don't realize that their quality of life can be raised for everyone if it's tool (for distribution) was replaced by other means. The point of creating a test city is to validate whether these claims are true and to then prove these claims to money advocates.

Also the occupy movement is changing many people's psychology as we speak simply by increasing the amount of discussion on topics the mainstream media often avoid.

[-] 1 points by genanmer (822) 2 years ago

"All the tests are already done. People demand more than we can produce. That is economics 101."

Don't jump to conclusions. People's demands can change. That is psychology 101.

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

So instead of using money to make sure demand equals supply, you think a better method is to change everyone's psychology? You don't think that is crazy?

[-] 1 points by genanmer (822) 2 years ago

"The population cannot shift their values. Because it is impossible for a consumer to know what is sustainable and what is not. You need money for that. Then they have a budget to spend within.

Without money, how would each person know how much they can consume?

We cannot produce abundance.

If income was allocated equally, everyone would get paid $127k. However, if people were given $390k, we know they are more than capable of spending that amount since people who make those sums and more, spend their income.

So if everything was free, we know people would consume the equivalent of $390k or even significantly more than that. That would require growing the economy 300%. That will take centuries."

You do not need money to determine sustainability. Gift economies have sustainably existed throughout the world without the use of money. I'm sure we can accomplish the same with a higher standard of living due to technology.

In fact money is so distorted because of fiat currency inflation, supply/demand, artificially created scarcity, and other regulations that it in no way represents what we can produce. e.g. certain clothing can sell for $100000s

We need empirical data.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XDhSgCsD_x8

Again, tests are needed.

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

All the tests are already done. People demand more than we can produce. That is economics 101.

[-] 1 points by genanmer (822) 2 years ago

(Posting here since I can't reply directly to your comment below)

"That is the point I have been making: People are going to demand more than we can produce!"

And this is the crux of the argument. Can we produce abundance or not?

Again, this is based on two major factors

  1. the values of the population: can a population shift their values to be more sustainable as a society (or should we look forward to an ecological collapse?)

  2. Technology: How capable are our technologies (and suppressed technologies) at producing abundance?

These questions require a test city to collect and analyze empirical evidence.

http://thevenusproject.com/

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

The population cannot shift their values. Because it is impossible for a consumer to know what is sustainable and what is not. You need money for that. Then they have a budget to spend within.

Without money, how would each person know how much they can consume?

We cannot produce abundance.

If income was allocated equally, everyone would get paid $127k. However, if people were given $390k, we know they are more than capable of spending that amount since people who make those sums and more, spend their income.

So if everything was free, we know people would consume the equivalent of $390k or even significantly more than that. That would require growing the economy 300%. That will take centuries.

[-] 1 points by genanmer (822) 2 years ago

Here's the long version explanation of using the price mechanism to understand how many resources are consumed and similar issues.

  1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sKpau1Dx6DQ&feature=related

  2. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUbBgkE5v7Q&feature=related

  3. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A9vRuhTLpFE

  4. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gf0ZMa2re4Y

  5. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NtEK1-zjdME

The short version: use surveys to collect data on what people desire. Then distribution centers within these high tech cities can produce goods in slight excess above the demands of the people.

The current market 'is' able to self adjust it's supply and demand however it must adjust after miscalculations are made rather than before. So errors are made more frequently in a monetary system.

Plus I'm sure if we do create a RBE, data can be provided on the average consumption for each person on earth. We frequently use statistics for healthcare, the grid, and within the current monetary system. A more common example: Stores automatically adjust their inventory based on data input.

The value shift is simply getting people to collaborate and play nice. Some skipped that kindergarten lesson. But I would prefer if important decisions weren't based on the opinions of greedy individuals.

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

There is a significant flaw in what you are proposing. It assumes people will not demand more than you can produce when everything is free.

That is the point I have been making: People are going to demand more than we can produce!

When people demand more than we can produce your surveys will be useless and your effort to manage inventory will by futile.

[-] 1 points by MonetizingDiscontent (1257) 2 years ago

Banks are already destroying capitalism. If you think capitalism is the problem then you love you should LOVE the big banks. Do not hassle the banks or get in their way, because as they print capitalism dies.

Capitalism requires a FREE MARKET. The Federal Reserve on the other-hand looks to control the market through printing of endless dollars and other tools it has at its disposal. What we have here is not a free market. What we have here is crony capitalism.

Audit the Federal Reserve, End Fractional Reserve Banking, Stop Debasing our Currency, No More Bailouts. Arrest The Corrupt Bankers on Wallstreet, JP Morgan Goldman Sachs Federal Reserve Wells Fargo Wachovia etc etc etc

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

If there was no government regulation of capitalism all our current problems would be magnified by several orders of magnitude.

[-] 1 points by MonetizingDiscontent (1257) 2 years ago

Nothing wrong with regulation, but look who's doing the regulation. Former Goldman Sachs people. Who goes to work for the Federal Reserve? Former Goldman Sachs people. Who is the Secretary of Treasury, EVERY YEAR? Goldman Sachs people. Its a rigged game, and a rigged economy. Thats crony-capitalism, not capitalism. Free-markets do not exist under those conditions.

Fraudulent Crimes have been committed in the banking industry that need the publics attention. Crimes committed by the Too Big To Fails who continue their fraud today. They are insolvent and should be allowed to fail, as they would be allowed to do in a true Free Market.

And capital doesn't have to be money either, by the way. It could be shells or feathers, or peanut butter sammiches.

Anyway, Its the criminal fraudulent activity that has gone unpunished and unreported that needs to be brought to attention.

Cheers!

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

I would disagree that what needs to be brought to attention is what happened with the bank bailouts. I think every American and most of the world is very familiar with what happened with the banking crisis.

What needs to be brought to people's attention is how unequal society is and how bad a deal they are getting.

97% of all workers make a below average income. Very, very, very, very few people know that. That is an unfair system. They don't know the average income is $127k. That is what people should be told. And they should demand a fair system with fair incomes so everyone is wealthy.

[-] 1 points by MonetizingDiscontent (1257) 2 years ago

nods. alright ...yes the people know about the bailouts yes ...yes, the 800 Billion. But how many here know the Federal Reserve sent out 16 TRILLION out of the country. Without mentioning it to congress.

That was found out through a one time partial audit. What else have they done. I think it warrants a FULL audit. Im talking about the Trillions sent out secretly to foreign banks. Not the little bitty 800 Billion that everyone seems to be giving all the daylight to. The 16 Trillion! Who's reporting on that. Where are the investigations? Thats crony capitalism in a rigged fiat market.

The 800 Billion in Bailouts, Hows that a Free Market. Thats crony capitalism in a rigged market. Thats not Liberty. Thats not Capitalism. Thats not Economic Freedom. And its not sound money.

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

The FED loans out money, that is what they do.

Telling the American public that the FED loaned money is not going to help anyone or solve any problems.

People need a right to a fair income, a right to equal income for equal work. If income was allocated democratically, there would be no problems.

[-] 1 points by Emcalone (88) from Plano, TX 2 years ago

No, democracy is just a system of bribery. Corporations bribe politicians and politicians bribe the people for votes. That is why we end up with huge sovereign debt. The recurring problem in human history is that people give into power and power always corrupts over time. Relying on the government to solve our problems is what has caused this economic crisis in the first place. Liberate yourself and denounce all power structures. That is the only solution...

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

Democracy just means equal power.

You can pretend power does not exist and denounce it. But in the real world power does exist and we should make sure everyone has an equal amount of it.

[-] 1 points by Emcalone (88) from Plano, TX 2 years ago

i suppose that i am assuming that you think the state should be in charge of distributing power.

[-] 1 points by Emcalone (88) from Plano, TX 2 years ago

You cant do that by allowing the state to have a monopoly of force. The only way you can give power back to the individuals is by getting rid of the monopoly of force called the state. Your argument is like saying we need to kill people in order to have peace.

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

I advocate equal power. You need a state to enforce equal power distribution. Otherwise some people will gain more power over others.

I want the state to stop people from committing murder. I do not want the state to murder anyone. Your analogy makes no sense.

[-] 1 points by Emcalone (88) from Plano, TX 2 years ago

When has any government actually done that over a long period of time? The only way the government can collect taxes and enforce laws is through force. Government can't exist without forcing people to pay taxes with the threat of violence. The state is no different than a religion. except for that it has always failed. over and over and over again. Even the most fair and virtuous governments incrementally become corrupt. And the fact of the matter is that the governments that start out with the best intentions(Rome, The British Empire, and The United States) end up being the most corrupt.

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

The government very effectively enforces capitalism - a system where power rests with the owners of capital.

I want it to enforce democracy instead - a system where power is held equally by everyone.

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

Capitalism is an economic system. Democracy is a political system. You simply have no idea what you are talking about. If nobody does menial work, how does it get done? Is the government going to own all the businesses? If not, how are they going to pay people 115k a year? It isn't socialism you are describing, it is hard core communism.

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

Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a management system where power rests with everyone equally. It can be used to run a government, an economy, a single business, a family, or it can be used to decide what to cook for dinner.

A democratic economic system simply means we have equal economic power. Incomes - your source of economic power - are equal.

Just like you get equal votes in a democratic government, you get equal dollar votes in a democratic economy.

However, since income is a way to compensate work, equal income means you get equal pay for equal work. When income is allocated equally, based on effort, there is enough income to make everyone in society wealthy as a right which solves nearly all the social problems we have.

Capitalism, soviet communism, chinese socialism, fascism, they are all unfair systems of inequality. Liberal democracy is the source of the only good in this world where people are given the EQUAL right to FREEDOM - the freedom to live how you want without political coercion or restraint and without economic coercion or restraint.

For the most part, the democratic economy would run largely as it does now. Consumers will decide what is produced based on how they spend their money. Entrepreneurs with new ideas will go to banks for funding. Companies will be individually run and managed. Companies must generate enough revenue to cover expenses in order to stay in business. Managers will be responsible for hiring, firing and company performance. And companies will still compete for your business.

However, there will be three primary differences that make it democratic: 1) Income - your source of economic power - will be allocated equally based on effort, and the final compensation plan will be determined democratically so that everyone is guaranteed a very high income. 2) Investment will no longer come from personal savings. 3) A group of managers will be elected to ensure that the general direction of the economy is also accountable to the public, so that we canmake surethe economy always has, for example, full employment.

[-] 1 points by Thoreaux42 (16) from Ithaca, NY 2 years ago

It's about values...would you rather have a healthy and equal society or a lot of shiny pieces of plastic?

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

Having an equal society means everyone can have everything they want. Nobody needs to sacrifice. It is a society that works really well for everyone.

[-] 1 points by dktechguy112 (16) 2 years ago

HAHAHAHA

Where are you going to get the money to do this? if u pay everyone 115k per year, assuming 350 million people. That is 402 trillion dollars a year. But you have cut the work week in half, so these people are less productive.

CAPITALISM promotes EFFORT. People will work hard if they can make more money. What you are talking about is socialism, and it always fails eventually. No one wants to work their a$$ off to become a doctor if they make the same a janitor.

If everyone makes the same, who will do the crap jobs?

Who will work hard if they know no matter how hard they work they cannot make any more money.

You apparently have not ever taken an economics class, or you would quickly see that your proposed plan would collapse in about a week.

you would pay each person 115,000 per year, but when everyone gets that people would go out and buy a lot. This would lead to ridiculous inflation, and very quickly that 115,000 salary would be worth less then 20,000 per year with inflation adjusted.

Have you noticed that this great country has had more prosperity then any other country in history using free market capitalism? Capitalism is efficient, when business is run for profit, it must be done efficiently. When government runs everything by people that do not care, it is done poorly and is inefficient. Russia used socialism and collapsed, what system do you want to be under?

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

We do not have 350 million workers. We have 100 million full time and 35 million part time.

If you pay everyone in science, computers, engineering, medicine, construction, mining, or farming $230k and everyone else $115k, it would total $13.7 trillion which is our current total pre-tax income which you can verify at bea.gov

Read the actual post. If you work more hours or a difficult job, you get paid more. Not everyone gets paid $115k. And companies must be profitable.

Russia had more prosperity under socialism than capitalism. Their economy shrunk for 10 years under capitalism. And it took another 10 years to get to the point they were at in 1989. Russia had a horrific political system and still managed to outperform capitalism.

[-] 1 points by dktechguy112 (16) 2 years ago

In socialism the control is in the hands of a few. They control the system, that scares me, as there are very few people in government that I would classify intelligent. In capitalism, if I work hard, I am rewarded. IMO that is the best system. If you like socialism, go move to a socialist country. This country was clearly founded as democratic.

"And companies must be profitable" So what happens if the company is not profitable? Do you shut it down and fire everyone? Oh wait, you can't fire them, you just move them to a different job.

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

I advocate democracy, read the post.

Capitalism is a system where control is in the hands of a few. 97% make a below average income. Most hard workers will not earn an average income, let alone a good income. If you work hard, you will NOT get rewarded.

Democracy is the exact opposite. It is a system where power is held by everyone equally. Your income - your source of economic power - is guaranteed to be the same as everyone else who works as hard as you.

Companies are independently run. If they are not profitable, they are shut down and the workers have to work for some place that is profitable.

[-] 1 points by stopthat (64) 2 years ago

I like this definition of democracy myself:

http://mitworld.mit.edu/video/729

Learning to See in the Dark: The Roots of Ethical Resistance by Carol Gilligan

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

Any way you can give me what her definition of democracy is without having to watch an hour video?

[-] 1 points by stopthat (64) 2 years ago

even jane fonda said it was a pivot point for her when she read this stuff. i agree. i only have a few of those in life, but getting the whole picture behind how much patriarchy (patriarchy is before religions) oppresses people. I've had a few epiphanies in the past few years on oppression. Patriarchy is one, learning about trauma (ptsd for me), and gender issues because i met a transgendered person for the first time and it changed how i will think forever. (Between XX and XY. Intersexuality and the Myth of Two Sexes was a good book on that.) But, i seem to be growing in how i think about the world now. Trauma kept me stuck in the past it seems. I feel like I can go forward in a lot of ways now. oh, learning that space was curved was one also...i didn't sleep for three days when i learned that, but not quite the same as the others.

[-] 1 points by stopthat (64) 2 years ago

I like this. It was a pivot point for me. I worry about patriarchy because men are taught that they are over women and children and even other men if they are different than themselves (crosses many cultures), and that good men are soldiers. If we keep teaching that, we are going to have men going to wars forever trying to be good. I worry about that. They are taught lies before they even have a language. It's all they ever knew (if you ask them about it, they start talking about animals bad behavior and such...that's not it). It's because the mom is trying to teach the baby not to imitate her so she starts to tell the boy what society thinks he is (but they are lies, big fat lies. yes, boys do cry. and they have to dissociate to even go to some of this stuff...wars in particular.). And we aren't treating men fairly. Women are aware of it. Men not so much. We have training issues. Let's deal with those. It would be good to understand more about trauma. A lot of patriarchy is trauma. Boys have problems earlier in life and are often lonely later in life because of it. (not to mention jails) Girls are told lies of patriarchy later in life (no need for mom to tell them right away) when they actually have a language. It just makes them mad. That means something. (see trauma. ptsd often shows up as anger. trace that back to the original trauma. people with ptsd are usually struggling with re-trauma...not keeping trauma with the original abuse/r. and are often triggered by things that remind them of the original, bosses, spouses, etc. but they don't understand where it is coming from. it's because people with ptsd have some work to do. that's a different topic, but it would be good to understand trauma before you read the books.) The books are better. They can only say so much in a lecture. In A Different Voice, The Birth of Pleasure, and The Deepening Darkness: Patriarchy, Resistance, and Democracy's Future. The Deepening Darkness will get to soldiers, but you need to understand everything that happens before that first. Read all the way to the end. Even if it doesn't seem like it applies to you, or is belaboring a point. It all snaps together in the end.) Patriarchy looks like oppression to me. I would like to see it weeded out of our system and move on to a real democracy as described in the lecture...where all voices are heard, not just a few.

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

That is an enormous wall of text and I could not find a definition of democracy in it.

[-] 1 points by stopthat (64) 2 years ago

all voices are heard. not just men...in a nutshell.

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

Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a management system where power rests with everyone equally. A democratic economic system simply means we have equal economic power. Incomes - your source of economic power - are equal.

Just like you get equal votes in a democratic government, you get equal dollar votes in a democratic economy.

[-] 1 points by ZenBowman (59) 2 years ago

This sounds like hell on Earth, your "solutions" are making the current system look amazing by comparison.

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

How brainwashed and deluded do you have to be to think that a system where you are guaranteed a fair income that is likely 3.5 times more than what you make now, hell on Earth? A society that works well for everyone is hell? You have a twisted worldview.

97% making a below average income and 46 million in poverty is "amazing"?

[-] 1 points by ZenBowman (59) 2 years ago

Your system will do none of the things you think it will, it is utterly delusional.

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

If you get out of your delusional fog, and do simple math, you would understand how badly you are getting ripped off.

The incomes are an indisputable mathematical fact. And people are motivated by income. So a democratic system would work better than this one.

The billionaires and media personalities who make hundreds of millions (an amount you will never earn) who tell you the only way the economy works is if you and 97% of workers make a below average income and struggle or live in poverty so that they can have most of the income are lying to you. And if you believe them, you are being incredibly gullible.

[-] 1 points by ZenBowman (59) 2 years ago

I make an above average wage. There is a huge difference between reducing income inequality and using violence to demand equal wages for everyone. The first is a noble goal, the second is tyrannical.

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

You do not make an above average wage. You do not make more than $127,000.

There is nothing violent about using a system that is fair instead of one that is unfair. You are brainwashed and gullible.

[-] 1 points by ZenBowman (59) 2 years ago

Incorrect on both counts.

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

Well, there is a 97% chance that you are lying. So I'll stick with the odds.

[-] 1 points by Billyblastoff (33) 2 years ago

I agree that we never really had democracy, when your vote only serves to elect the people who will represent you, you can't really call that democracy. We need to push that thought a little further and use direct democracy where people actually vote to pass or refuse laws. We have the communication means to make this possible today. Voters’ turnout in North America is constantly going down and people are disillusioned with the electoral process and feel it has now become a bit meaningless to vote. It is not enough for most people just to vote once every four years to elect someone that will later be corrupted or do whatever.

In order to create a better democracy, we need to be able to bypass at least some of the representative process. Modern communications is now allowing us to say what we want as individuals and we no longer need to be represented by people in parliament to take decisions for us. The role of the government should be to propose directions society could take but letting the people decide through referendums (direct democracy). This process, while alleviating corruption by removing some power to elected people, would allow some decisions that no political party would ever attempt to take because they would often be against the interests of influent lobby groups and powerful corporations.

So far, the main stomping block for e voting taking on is revolving around confidentiality (anonymity) and hacking concerns. Those issues could be addressed by having an open e voting system by which the database, although anonymous, would be open allowing voters to verify that their vote is accounted for and accurate. The users could get a random number identifying them in the database and check if that number (or key) is associated with the correct vote for the given referendum, many could be run simultaneously. The best would be to create a package using maybe Open Office as a way for the user to manipulate the database to verify his/her vote and analyze the data if desired. The difficulty in having a representative and legitimate vote is to be able to use the electoral database for the constituencies to generate the individual keys; maybe someone would have to be elected the old fashion way clearly stating this goal as a platform... Looking at what is happening in the Arab world, this might be a way to quickly implement a form of democracy in places where there is nothing yet to support it. Your movement is very fertile ground for these ideas to take roots, there are highly educated motivated people in your group that could make this a reality and elaborate a system that would account for minority rights, server setups, phone interface etc. It could also (one can dream) create a whole new world where every voice can finally be heard and be as important towards decision making as anyone else. No matter the size of the voter’s bank account or number of influential friends: we have to take the power back.

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

There is really only a limited amount of things people can vote on. Otherwise, it will be a full time job.

As Aristotle said, so long as you have a representative democracy, you will have an oligarchy run by the rich because it is only the rich that have the means to get someone elected to national office.

[-] 1 points by Billyblastoff (33) 2 years ago

I agree with Aristotle, only the rich and influencial stands a chance to be elected. That is precisely why it doesn't work anymore and why corruption is rampant, we gave those people the power to decide for us... I disagree about the time it takes to vote in that maner, there are not so many bills passed in parliament, most of the pm's time is spent arguing and preparing a healthy retirement (corruption). Also many decisions are only relevant locally and are not a concern for the whole population. It will happen at some point, the current way is meaningless, inneficient and very expensive. The banks have been using the internet (and phone) with a lot of success with very sensitive matters to the population (their cash). The only reason it hasn't happen with voting is that it would eventualy take the power away from the parliement members as if you allow people to vote online to ellect people maybe you could vote online to actually decide if you really want that law to be passed (bailing banks for example). The actual electoral process is a paradigm we have to get away from, we have the means to say what we want, as individuals.

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

I think it would be a full time job having to vote on every issue.

I think people should perhaps vote on the big issues.

And instead of an election system, you can do what the Greeks did where reps were selected by lot like a jury.

If we implemented the system outlined in this post, a system of elected representatives would not have the same conflicts of interests since there would be no profits to be made.

[-] 1 points by Billyblastoff (33) 2 years ago

Direct democray is already at work in Switzerland where they use referendums all the time to take important decisions. The problem there is that people have to vote in person the old fashion way making the process very lenghty and inneficient. Voters would only participate to the proposals or laws that they would feel concerned about. I am sure that you would agree that being asked for important decisions is important. If we want a better town, a better state, country and ultimately a better world, we have to start by allowing the will of the people to rule the land. As it is now we have a very polarized group of individuals (left or right) asking for peoples go ahead to do what they want for the duration of their mandate. The "civilized" world is stuck in a paradigm as far as democracy is concerned, the actual system is much better than some countries I have been in but far from perfect. Allowing people to vote for decisions (laws) instead of electing representatives to do so takes the power away from them and responsibilizes the citizens towards the good of their city, their state, their country and ultimately their world. Sounds like a very nice full time job to me ;-)

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

Few people would want a full time voting job on top of their regular full time job.

I think direct voting has benefits.

But the problems it solves pales in comparison to the problems of income inequality and the fact that 97% of all workers make a below average income and have to live a below average standard of living as a result.

Income needs to be allocated democratically.

[-] 1 points by Billyblastoff (33) 2 years ago

At the root of those inequalities are fiscal problems and policies that have to be changed. The government is unable or unwilling to change those policies because too much money and power is involved. But in a system where the population is really deciding what is allowed or not, things could be very different. The power would shift from corporations towards the people, like it should be.

As far as average income is concern, I have no opinion in this regard. I am poor but eat well and I have a roof over my head. I have worked in some of the poorest countries on this planet and know that my average income will probably always be superior to what most African worker can get. Can't complaint.

[-] 1 points by uslynx81 (203) 2 years ago

This is crazy and could never work. If Everyone was born making 115,000 a year people wouldn't work. Our money wouldn't be worth the paper it would be printed on. Inflation is a major issue right now and a bad one with the Fed printing more money. You need to do more homework on the Free Market.

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

Why won't people work for $115k!?! That is more than 3.5 times what most workers make.

We are not increasing the total income that is getting paid out. All we are doing is reallocating existing income. So on average, costs will remain the same. And since costs will remain the same, prices will also remain the same.

For example, if a company has just 2 workers and one was paid $200k and the other was paid $30k, their total costs would be $230k.

If they decided to reallocate income so that they were both paid $115k each, their costs would still remain $230k. Since their costs didn't change, their prices won't change.

[-] 1 points by AN0NYM0US (640) 2 years ago

Didn't read anything you wrote, just noting.

Capitalism = type of economy

Democracy = type of government

You can't replace the two with each other.

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

Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a management system where power rests with everyone equally. It can be used to run a government, an economy, a single business, a family, or it can be used to decide what to cook for dinner.

A democratic economic system simply means we have equal economic power. Incomes - your source of economic power - are equal.

Just like you get equal votes in a democratic government, you get equal dollar votes in a democratic economy.

However, since income is a way to compensate work, you get equal pay for equal work.

[-] 1 points by AN0NYM0US (640) 2 years ago

And what about those who do less work, like CEOs, or editors? (compared to construction workers) What is my incentive to work harder? Do I get a raffled job or do I get to work any job I want? If we can chose any job and get payed equally, wouldn't we want to work easy jobs, like artist. Faced with this, the government will have to start dictating jobs, to maintain innfrastructure and run daily useful industries. Then we will be stuck doing what we are designated and getting payed an average pay. What would we purchase? US companies would have no incentive to make companies and products if they weren't going to make anymore money than usual. For that system to work, there must be tiers of pay. Those that invent, or make a successful businesses should make more than those that sweep floors. There will always be rich and poor, there has to be, because there will always be the lazy and motivated.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

No, not in Never Never Land. In Never Never Land, everybody is wealthy and everybody gets a pony. And if the pony dies "they" give you a new one.

He fundamentally doesn't understand the concept of performance-based compensation. But yet he thinks that hes smart enough to be some kind of Karl Marx with a whole new plan for how to structure society.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

You are now a proud recipient (you were entitled to it) of an Iserbyt Award, for excellence in fringe, crackpot ideology.

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

Since Albert Einstein and Martin Luther King advocate the same, I feel like I am in good company.

I much rather be in their company than Rush Limbaugh's.

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

I really don't know how proud I can be of it if it doesn't come with a plaque or trophy.

[-] 1 points by alfi (469) 2 years ago

@Demand holy crap, I can't believe you just said that

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

Why can't you believe? Can you be proud of an award that doesn't come with a plaque or trophy?

[-] 1 points by alfi (469) 2 years ago

I am very proud of what I am doing here in these forums, I have no reward, in fact, quite the opposite, you should know, you've seen my post.

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

TechJunkie is someone who thinks you are fringe if you don't agree with his narrow worldview. I'm just trying to humor him.

[-] 1 points by alfi (469) 2 years ago

I see, I have done that before with many also, thanks for clearing it up,

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

You are so right. I can't pass out digital trophies but maybe a badge. Too bad that this forum moderates away images when I post them...

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

I would like to thank George Noory and Alex Jones for bringing crackpots to the mainstream. I would like to thank the Iserbyt Academy for recognizing the work of thinkers like me, so often our ideologies go unrecognized.

And, of course, I would like to thank capitalism. Without you, I would be nothing.

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

nice!

[-] 1 points by AN0NYM0US (640) 2 years ago

It's still here, perhaps he deserves it that much

[-] 1 points by alfi (469) 2 years ago

many smiles here

[-] 1 points by uncommonsense1st (5) 2 years ago

I like your ideas although some of them are impossible. I have been thinking we need a whole radically new form of communism, american made and totally new and different. many of your ideas are similar. The communist threat did more good for our country here in america than it ever did for russia or china. I wouldn't want to live in either one. But if we don't rise up now and change our land as our forefathers said we must, we will be a sorry ass people living as slaves....GIVE ME MY FREEDOM!!!!!

[-] 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 is 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.

Do you mean impossible to to change the system or impossible to get what is outlined here to work in practice?

[-] 1 points by OccupyCapitolHill (197) 2 years ago

Capitalism: System of economics Democracy: System of government

Nice fail, OP.

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

Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a management system where power rests with everyone equally. It can be used to run a government, an economy, a single business, a family, or it can be used to decide what to cook for dinner.

A democratic economic system simply means we have equal economic power. Incomes - your source of economic power - are equal.

Just like you get equal votes in a democratic government, you get equal dollar votes in a democratic economy.

However, since income is a way to compensate work, you get equal pay for equal work.

[-] 1 points by OccupyCapitolHill (197) 2 years ago

I know what democracy means...I'm actually half-Greek. >_< And it's a political system by which power rests equally with the people. However, because you have no hierarchy, you have a much more questionable system of authority and order, which is where the sectarian aspect of ancient Greece came into play.

In any event, to your point, your ideas are nice in theory, but totally unrealistic. The United States is not just bankrupt, it's in trillions of dollars of debt.

It seems to me that you OWS guys think that there's all this magical money just floating around and hanging from trees in the lovely garden of Utopia ripe for the picking and use by the government as an elixir for the ills of society.

Making everyone rich, which is impossible in its own right, won't eliminate crime. That's just an assumption with no credible evidence.

Menial work will always be needed. That's just a fact of life. Unless you plan on a massive sudden leap forward in android/robotic technology...

Finally, you don't just have a 3-tier payroll depending on what you perceive to be hard and easy jobs...the capitalist system IS necessary for the profit motive to effect the best produced goods. Maybe you'd be willing to work hard for a set income, but look at China or Taiwan where the low-paying zero-upward-mobility sweatshops are. Not exactly the highest quality product if you've ever bought anything from a 99-cent store. You get what you pay for. And you get what labor you pay for as well.

I hate to jump out on a limb so far out here but look at Russia's space race programs, specifically their attempts at going to the moon after Gagarin. Why did the Russian space program's failure climax with their N1 moon rocket blowing up on all four launch attempts? Easy. No competition between companies for design contracts like there was at NASA, no profit motives from said contracts, and the lack of incentive to work beyond the demands of the government.

Again, your idea is nice in theory, but unrealistic.

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

Thanks for the information. All these years I thought it would work. But as you have just explained, it really won't. I guess guys like Albert Einstein didn't really think the idea through.

I got mislead because it is backed by decades of published, peer reviewed studies. I guess I shouldn't believe everything you read, even if it is in mainstream academic journals.

[-] 1 points by OccupyCapitolHill (197) 2 years ago

Well I'm showing examples of how a system without the profit incentive works in practice rather than theory. And the outcomes have been very bleak.

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

Not everyone gets a fixed salary. Some jobs are paid based on performance. Companies must remain profitable.

You can get maximum effort out of people by giving them the opportunity to earn twice their income or three times their income. You don't need to pay people 10,000 times more. There is only so much effort you can get from someone in a work day. And you can get that maximum effort without having to pay them 10,000 times more.

And when incomes are more reasonably allocated, there is enough income to make every single worker wealthy at a minimum.

The science of incentives is well understood. We know what works and what does not.

[-] 1 points by OccupyCapitolHill (197) 2 years ago

Well people don't get to the top 1% by being employees. They accrue capital through being CEOs and the head honchos of companies and corporations. They determine how much they make by the quality and resulting demand of the goods they produce, something that shouldn't be regulated. If somebody makes a million-dollar product (figuratively speaking), who's to say they don't thus deserve to profit equitably from their creativity or quality of production?

If you want to talk about leveling salaries, I don't necessarily disagree. Let's start with Washington. xP

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

Investment would no longer rely on the savings of CEOs. A portion of GDP is simply allocated for investment.

Your income should be based on the amount of work you do, not on how lucky you are in the market. The difference between a product that sells well and one that does not is luck. There is no secret formula that guarantees you success in the market. The market is unpredictable.

The casino is for people who want to gamble. The economy should be a place where people get paid to work.

If we paid based on work instead of luck, everyone would be wealthy.

The system we have now is not fair. There is absolutely no benefit to paying 97% of all workers a below average income.

[-] 1 points by drnufunk (1) from Long Beach, CA 2 years ago

I agree with a lot of what you say, but the big flaw is figuring out the ranking of what is difficult work compared to not difficult. Many gardeners work just as hard as bank execs or university professors. As soon as you start ranking the jobs and therefore job pay, you start re-enforcing the class system that you are objecting to.

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

Voters will have to directly approve the compensation plan. What is considered difficult has some subjectivity. But what jobs qualify and how much more they pay will be determined democratically.

However, it is probably not as subjective as you think. Difficulty means it requires more mental or physical effort.

So that means hard labor and high-skilled positions.

Gardeners are doing hard labor, so they would qualify. Bank managers are not doing hard labor or anything that requires high skill, so they would not.

A bank executive would be doing a highly skilled job so they would qualify. A professor of medicine would qualify but a professor of literature may not.

The maximum differential would also be something democratically approved. Having someone earn twice the amount as someone else does not put them in different classes. But it is very unlikely the majority would approve having some job pay 10 times or 500 times or 10,000 times more than someone else. It is impossible for people to work that much harder than someone else.

There have been studies done on this. People have no idea how unequal income is. And when asked to describe what they think is a fair allocation, on average, people say that the highest group of workers should not make even 4 times more than the lowest group.

http://www.alternet.org/newsandviews/article/569425/study:_most_americans_want_wealth_distribution_similar_to_sweden

[-] 1 points by Dionysuslives (170) 2 years ago

Capitalism and democracy are not mutually exclusive concepts. Both of them proceed according to a particular understanding of the role of "the Individual" in society which regards living people as abstract units acting according to rational self-interest. Granted, democracy in its "liberal" formation argues that certain state-sponsored "checks and balances" should be placed on this pursuit, but the notion of the Rational Agent still holds sway in all forms of democracy as well as capitalism.

As to whether or not I consider myself a "revolutionary," I'd say yes but with a qualifier: "Revolution," understood as a distant historical moment that a collective social entity (such as "the Working Class," "the Masses," etc) is marching towards in a relatively straight line, isn't going to happen. If the writings of Karl Marx still have any value, it is not in their effort to reduce the march of history to a "science" but in their analysis of estranged labour and commodity fetishism. If, however, we understand revolution to be the immediate radical overturning/transformation of society as it currently exists and its replacement with a new mode of social interaction based on individual autonomy and voluntary association then, yes, I consider myself a revolutionary.

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

I agree with your assessment of Marx. I want a figurative revolution, not an actual storming of the gates.

I am for voluntary association. But if that association is economic, it has to be within the rules of the economic system.

[-] 1 points by MJMorrow (419) 2 years ago

A direct democracy is two wolves and a lamb deciding what will be for diner. We have a Republic in the United States of America and in order to do what you ask, we would have to get rid of our Government. I am loyal to our Constitution, to our Government and our people. We need to redirect Capitalism in such a way that we grow our economy and support job creation for two generations of unemployed Americans. Guys like, well...me, are doing just that. Today I was writing a former CEO and discussing creating a movement; made up of former CEOs, economists, Investment Bankers, politicians and MBAs, like me, to promote real high paying job creation in the USA. I don't want to be unemployed any more than you. Protest is a symptom, Capitalism is a solution. We can and will create an internal economy capable of generating great wealth and prosperity, for Wall Street and Main Street. We did it before and I promise you that we will do it again, while respecting the US Constitution, the laws of our Nation, the legitimacy of our Government institutions and the soundness of our economic system. We do not need to be lambs for wolves. Best Regards, MJ Morrow

[-] 1 points by Bootsw (39) 2 years ago

Capitalism in its purest form is detrimental to the population, so again is democracy in its purest form. What the Op is suggesting and what you are suggesting is seemingly two ends of a large magnet. Let us consider going to the center of this magnet. What would be the result??

When we get to far toward the capitalistic pole we start to be attracted to the democratic pole(ows movement).. and visa versa(NAFTA). I think that the constitution, and our Government are the best mix of capitalism/democracy we can get without causing great harm to our fellow Americans.

Changes do need to be made, but what are they exactly?

Boots

[-] 1 points by MJMorrow (419) 2 years ago

Well, for one, we need a plan that will allow Wall Street and Main Street to share in tremendous wealth creation, off of growing our home market. This means we need to get the birth rate up and we need to stop competing with the World, rather we need to bring the consumers of the World to our shores, so that we may dictate the terms of Global commerce. We are not going to do that by telling workers to do more for less, get used to the new normal and dig a ditch, if you can't use your doctorate. Simply put, no one is moving to the US to make no more money or have no more opportunity to advance, than where they presently are. No one is going to come here and dig ditches for a living, after getting an education.

I am rich and therefore you dig ditches or die sounds good to Neo cons, but the protests in our streets, the skilled immigrants leaving the USA, to make more money elsewhere, the foreign work abroad students refusing to work around the clock for free, in Pennsylvania, the decline of US influence around the World, all speak to the impracticality of this contempt for or neglect of workers, in the USA. The USA needs to be a healthful part of a robust Global economy, creating high paying careers, to attract the World to our shores. Our market will not thrive apart from a Global economy or torn apart by foolish internal exploitation. Still,the solution will require that Wall Street and Main Street both benefit tremendously, since Wall Street is not the problem, but will certainly be part of the solution. Protests are the symptom, but Capitalism is the solution.

[-] 1 points by Bootsw (39) 2 years ago

Details man... details. advocate for American businesses/workers: 1 solution: goods and services tariff. If I hire someone in America to do a service, the minimum wage cost of that labor should be upheld. To do that if a company hires a 3rd world national to do phone service on an American account that service needs to be charged a tariff. Goods tariffs are intuitive, but still necessary.

2 solution: take the ability of the corporation to be a legal entity away, or at least diminish it. then it can't defend itself against actual people. Make it so a corporation can't own: a patent, a song, or any other combination of artistic/scientific creation. Why can a person toil in research for countless hours to have the full benefit of that work being paid to a corporation?? How can a person write and perform a piece of music only to have a label garner the benefit from that work... (admittedly I'm going to need some help on this one. any ideas on how to diminish a corporations potency as an entity)...

solution 3:Enforce immigration laws. Just enforce them thats all.. and make 'the dream' act a reality. If someone comes here and earns a degree, they should also get their citizenship as well(must pass the usual interview process and know about civics ect.. )

solution 4: Eliminate ridiculous awards in civil suits off all kinds. All they do is drive up the price of insurance. make a federal or state by state cap on civil awards. if my arm was chopped off though the negligence of somebody.. should I really get a 50 million dollar reward for that??? Pay for my medical rehab and any vocational rehab, and be done with it. Criminal negligence doesn't cost much to the insurance payer.. it costs the individuals that are criminally negligent. (the people responsible for my arm getting chopped off are in jail now).

solution 4: privatize education to a certain extent: give parents the choice of where their student goes to school... have schools compete for the 'dollars' allotted to each student... Darwinism will win out... education will be better.

ok out of solutions for the moment... Please present some cogent solutions in order to make the US a leader in the global economy. I would also like to see some solution in order to give Americans an equal opportunity at health care and income..

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

Capitalism doesn't work and never has worked.

All our wealth and progress has come from science, not capitalism. Capitalism just allocates that wealth unequally.

Despite the fact that we have the resources and technology to produce a near unlimited amount of anything, capitalism has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

Just in case you missed that, 97% of all workers make a below average income.

That is not because everyone in society is a loser.

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

And this system is designed to work 100% of the time for all the people born into one of the families of those lucky few, regardless of how hard-working, responsible or effective they are.

It is an incredibly unfair system. It simply does not work.

It doesn't work for me. It doesn't work for you. It doesn't work for 97% of all workers.

The only way the economy will work for everyone is if we allocate income equally based on effort.

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

Democracy is not mob rule or rule of the majority. It is equal power. Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a management system where power rests with everyone equally.

Our country was founded on the enlightenment ideals of freedom and equality which is the modern interpretation of a liberal democracy.

This proposal just applies it to all of society. It means every citizen gets an equal freedom to act, speak, and think; equal treatment under the law; equal votes; and equal income for equal effort.

Two wolves and a sheep cannot vote to eat the sheep for dinner because that would violate the sheep's equal right to treatment under the law. The law protects the rights of the minority to the same degree as the majority.

Our country, however, was founded by rich, white, slave owners. Of course 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. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWvIWxh2yRs&feature=player_detailpage#t=511s

[-] 1 points by MJMorrow (419) 2 years ago

The Greeks were slave owners, last time I checked and they restricted citizenship to a few individuals too. We live in a Republic, not a direct democracy and we have a Constitutional system, as you very well know. We must work lawfully, within our intstitutions, to achieve our aims and we can; Americans have in the past and we will in the future. Now you point to the equal income for equal effort, but how do we determine what equal effort is? How do you enforce the equality of all citizens to act, speak and think? Who will determine what equal effort means? Violating the equal treatment of the sheep under the law, huh? How do you enforce this law? Forgive me, but this stuff, you suggest, sounds like the empty snake oil promises of the mass murdering Marxist Socialists. We both know what they did to the lamb, yes?

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

"we have a Constitutional system"

With an anachronistic constitution written hundreds of years ago by rich, white slave owners who were more interested in making sure they maintained their wealth and power than the constitution reflecting the humanitarian ideals of the Enlightenment.

If the constitution was a document based on the liberal democratic principles of freedom and equality, it would be simple and would enshrine into law the sentiment of the Enlightenment Era and the sentiment of the Declaration of Independence. It would read something like:

"Everyone has a birth right to the equal freedom to act - to pursue their happiness however they define it - without coercion or restraint so long as they do not reasonably violate that same right in others. Every citizen gets an equal freedom to act, speak, and think; equal treatment under the law; equal votes; and equal income for equal effort."

That would be the whole constitution. That would be the supreme law of the land. It would not say how a government should run.

Running any organization, including government, is a technical matter and should evolve and improve over time as we get better at managing things. The running of the government should be subjected to science, peer review and democratic vote. It shouldn't be run by the unscientific scripture written in some founding bible several hundred years ago.

And the democratic principles of freedom and equality should be the permanent law. It shouldn't be a political football constantly debated and interpreted.

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

"how do we determine what equal effort is?"

Effort is just a function of the amount of time you work and whether the job you do is mentally or physically difficult. People who work twice the hours should obviously get paid twice the income. And people who work the difficult jobs, the jobs in science, computers, engineering, medicine, construction, mining, or farming, should get paid more than the people who work jobs that are not difficult.

The final compensation plan would be directly voted on by the population, but if you paid difficult jobs twice the amount as jobs that are not difficult, since that is likely enough of an incentive to get people to do more difficult work, based on the American economy in 2010, that system would pay an income of $230,000 per year for the difficult jobs and $115,000 per year for the rest of the jobs.

"How do you enforce the equality of all citizens to act, speak and think? How do you enforce this law?"

With police, prosecutors, judges. We have a legal system.

[-] 1 points by MJMorrow (419) 2 years ago

Now with regard to the enforcement issues, we already have all of these things in place. The USA already has rule of law. We have the best lawyers, judges and prosecutes any country could hope for and we do have enforcement of our laws. Just the other day, a Hedge Fund big shot learned that no one is above the law and justice; that our laws are taken seriously and that our legal system works. The USA is a fine Republic. Wall Street and Corporate America are certainly not what is wrong with the USA, but we do need to get Wall Street and Corporate America to spend more time creating tremendous wealth off of re-imagining our economy and employing the two most highly educated and/ or skilled generations in the history of the USA.

Getting America back to work requires that we work toward ensuring that Wall Street and Main Street can benefit mutually, for as a wise CEO, I admire greatly, for his leadership and category killer philosophy, named Joseph R. Bazcko once said to me, "Mike, there is no such thing as a free lunch."He didn't mean anything illegal or bad by that, or what not, just that you have to be ready to get things done and you can't look for a handout. He wanted to toughen me up, so that when I do get my career going again, I appreciate that if I want to get rich, I have to make sure that my shareholders are taken care of, because they owe me nothing and I have to earn what I take out of the World.

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

"I have to earn what I take out of the World"

Having a system that entitles you to a fair income, an income that guarantees you the same income as everyone else who works just as hard as you, does not mean you did not earn your pay.

"Wall Street and Corporate America are certainly not what is wrong with the US"

Capitalism doesn't work and never has worked.

All our wealth and progress has come from science, not capitalism. Capitalism just allocates that wealth unequally.

Despite the fact that we have the resources and technology to produce a near unlimited amount of anything, capitalism has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

Just in case you missed that, 97% of all workers make a below average income.

That is not because everyone in society is a loser.

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

And this system is designed to work 100% of the time for all the people born into one of the families of those lucky few, regardless of how hard-working, responsible or effective they are.

It is an incredibly unfair system. It simply does not work.

It doesn't work for me. It doesn't work for you. It doesn't work for 97% of all workers.

The only way the economy will work for everyone is if we allocate income equally based on effort.

[-] 1 points by MJMorrow (419) 2 years ago

What if you work twice the hours, because you are half as efficient or because you were not trained properly? Why not pay someone more money for doing three times the work of an average worker, in half the time that the next most productive worker could achieve the same or similar result? While I agree entirely that we need to pay more money, for a great many careers, if we want to attract the best talent, from around the World and if we want our market to get preferential treatment, I do not agree that compensation plans should be negotiated by persons other than owners and their agents.

The idea that I could force a business owner out of business by voting to force an owner to pay his or her workers more money than he or she can afford is simply not workable. If someone is willing to pay me $170,000, for a difficult Strategic Planning position and I am willing to take that amount, why should I or a potential employer be held hostage by your arrangement? What if I am not quite productive and useful enough, at the moment to justify $230,000 and my potential employer passes up on me, because I am not yet that candidate. If I could take the $170, 000 job, I could gain experience and become the useful employee, employers would pay $230,000 or maybe the kind of employee they would pay even more money.

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

"What if you work twice the hours, because you are half as efficient or because you were not trained properly?"

As explained in the post, if you do not do the amount of work you were hired to do because of laziness or incompetency, you should be fired. If you are incompetent, you should be better trained. Workers will get paid to get trained and educated. Training and education is part of work, it is not a consumption item.

A very small minority of jobs will benefit from paying directly based on output. With those jobs, you can earn up to the $230k (or whatever the cap is) depending on your output.

See this comment for a more detailed discussion of incentives: http://occupywallst.org/forum/are-you-rebels-or-revolutionaries-choose-revolutio/#comment-85266

"I do not agree that compensation plans should be negotiated by persons other than owners and their agents"

Most workers have far less leverage in negotiations regarding salary than owners. That is why 97% of all workers make a below average salary. If income was allocated democratically - where you had the right to equal pay for equal effort - everyone would be wealthy. Treating people like commodities is cruel and inhumane and does not produce fair incomes.

"The idea that I could force a business owner out of business by voting to force an owner to pay his or her workers more money than he or she can afford is simply not workable"

The idea that owners of business and their current economic system can force 97% of all workers to earn a below average income, 46 million into poverty, 16% into underemployment, 1 in every 5 kids into poverty, 25% of all blacks into poverty, 52 million to go without health insurance, and 55% of all workers to do pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology, despite the fact that we have the resources and technology to produce a near unlimited amount of anything, is simply not workable.

Allocating existing income equally will not raise expenses. Although 97% will get a pay increase, that additional money is coming from the fact that 3% are getting a pay decrease. Overall, total income for the entire economy remains the same.

"what if my potential employer passes up on me, because I am not yet that candidate"

Our economic system will no longer be held hostage by the willingness of rich people to invest. A democratic economy will have full employment and we will invest whatever money is necessary to launch enough new businesses to maintain full employment.

If you are the best at what you do, you will have the chance to work anywhere you want. Everyone will want to hire you. If you are not the best but still competent, you still will be able to get a job.

[-] 1 points by MJMorrow (419) 2 years ago

Admittedly, Corporate America has been able to eliminate many jobs, through gains in efficiency and through outsourcing, but the mechanism to right the problem is already built into Capitalism and it is starting to play out. If employers ask guys with advanced degrees to mop floors for a living, they might succeed, in the short run, but in the long run they only shoot themselves in the foot. The USA needs population growth.

Population growth, more than anything determines whether or not a company may sustain the benefits of free cash flow and maximize their chance of sustaining growth in shareholder value, off of activities in a given market. The USA focused on growing the World market, but the World isn't going to be Wall Streets little screw toy. China is already looking at weaning off of exports to the USA. If this country pays workers no more than what Chinese workers, Indian workers or Russian workers are paid, then Corporate America and Wall Street are saying to the World, "Hey, we aren't as important a market, because we can't attract immigrants and our consumers have the same per capita purchasing power as an Indian, but we have a shrinking population, so you are better off in India. Look at us, we are greedy trust fund idiots, too stupid to advance our own economy. dar! dar! dar!" lol You don''t need us, after all there are Chinese people willing to be I- Bankers too, so leave us and let us go off the ledge like Smeigel, in Lord of the Rings!" =) There are limits to exploitation and the USA will either ensure that there are high paying careers, or the USA will become a Third World country.

Clearly, if Americans with advanced degrees and foreigners with advanced degrees were all willing to dig ditches, there would not be a protest movement in the USA. Remember, it is not just Americans protesting our employment conditions, just recently foreign work exchange students were protesting working conditions in Pennsylvania. Skilled illegal alien labor is moving out and going back to Mexico to make more money in Mexican factories. Nothing says avoid the USA like, do more with less, get used to the new normal and I am rich and you are poor, so tough and just mop a floor if you don't like it! Clearly that crap is not going to make the USA the future of the World. The USA is already on notice that to be the future we will need high paying careers and not just high unemployment. If some rich people don't believe this, they are not being sound businessmen, they are simply suffering from Narcissistic personality disorder or something and they need a shrink. Still, we need a solution that creates vast wealth for everyone, including Wall Street and billionaires, because the mutually beneficial plans are the ones that people end up supporting; one hand feeds the other. =) Capitalism will straighten out the trust fund losers, thinking they own the World. Just like your protest is a symptom of, yes? You don't need Marxist Socialism, just rational self interested workers telling the employers what the World is willing to do for a buck and what the World is not willing to do for a buck; and it will all fall into place, thanks to Capitalism.

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

Capitalism has never in its history produced equal outcomes as Adam Smith thought it might.

I'm not sure what makes you think that somehow it magically will now. In this country, vast inequality of income has been going on for hundreds of years. At what point do you realize that it just doesn't work?

If you have billionaires, you cannot have a population where everyone is wealthy because the billionaires are consuming too much of the available income. This is just simple math.

[-] 1 points by MJMorrow (419) 2 years ago

I am interested in a system where you are fairly rewarded for hard work, but that will never lead to equal outcomes. When I screw up and my rival gets it right, I deserve a kick in the tail and that kick teaches me to not make failure a habit. I am not equal in ability to the CEOs I know, but I look at what they do and I seek to be as great as they are, one day. If I believed I was their equal, I would only lie to myself and set myself up for failure. We can enforce equality of opportunity, but there will always be inequality among workers. Some will care and want to win and others will not. If workers do achieve equality it will be because they, as individuals, demand that they match their co-worker and if they have any sense they will seek to surpass their co-worker, since equality is a state of mediocrity.

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

People have virtually no control over their economic outcomes. 97% of workers didn't choose a below average income. The system forced that upon them.

If you keep screwing up or are an incompetent CEO, you will be fired. People making occasional mistakes is no reason to force 97% of all workers to make a below average income.

[-] 1 points by mancanbemore (30) 2 years ago

so everyone would be employed but no one would have to do any sort of menial work? that sounds great! but makes no sense to me...

[-] 1 points by mancanbemore (30) 2 years ago

sounds like watered down socialism rather than democracy

[-] 1 points by RationalReaper (188) 2 years ago

I'm a bit of both....a visionary too

[-] 1 points by jeremycf5f (6) 2 years ago

this is socialism.

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

If you define socialism in the narrows sense of public ownership, then yes it is socialism.

Socialism works. NASA works, the National Science Foundation works, schools work, public universities work, Veterans Hospitals work, police departments work, fire departments work, the FBI works, the CIA works, the military works, the post office works, garbage collection works. And the Nordic countries, which have the most socialism of all the developed countries, have the highest standard of living in the world, the highest quality of life in the world and the citizens with the most happiness in the world directly because they have the most socialism in the developed world.

[-] 1 points by MJMorrow (419) 2 years ago

Lets first clear something up. In the United States, Socialism typically refers to Classical Socialism, rooted in Marxism and expressed politically through Communism. Historically Command Economics went hand in hand with what we called Socialism. It is not accurate to suggest that the systems of Government and services you describe above are the result of Socialism. You are describing systems, like Social democracy and Social Democracy was repressed by Socialism. In Russia the Communist (the Socialists) betrayed the Social Democrats and killed them.

Socialism would be the end of the things you describe. Socialist societies do not favor social programs, since there is no emphasis on equality of persons in a Socialist society. Lenin speculated that it might be impossible to ever have equality of all men and women. The only equality that Socialists favored was that everyone be equally screwed, under the control of Oligarchs. Socialism is an extreme form of the exploitation your protesters accuse Wall Street of, plus the addition of mass murder and slavery. The only improvements in these Societies, in standard of living, come from the adoption of free market Capitalism, not Socialism.

Under Socialism it is assumed that the strong rule over the weak and the smart over the stupid. People must toil and sacrifice, no one hands you comprehensive health care coverage, in a Classical Socialist regime. This is one reason why big business was attracted to Socialist regimes, since the Socialist exploit poor workers and have the Socialist elite rule over them, without sharing the fruits of the labor. Now that free market Capitalism is getting the Chinese to demand higher salaries, big business is not so happy, what with the Chinese not as poor and helpless as they first were, because of Socialism.

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

People are not equal. Some are hard working, driven individuals, while some are not. Regardless of the circumstances, some people are dishonest, while some are honest. You need to hop off of your bus to fantasyland. You reference all of your ideas of utopia, yet you have no means of achieving it other than vague assumptions. When everyone is MADE equal, our society is worthless. Competition and the drive to succeed have resulted in the greatest accomplishments in history. Everyone getting equal rewards for unequal effort results in laziness and a "I DESERVE EVERYTHING" mentality. You have the priveledge of living in a country where you can achieve anything you work hard enough for. Yet, all I see are people in this movement wanting everything for nothing.

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

What you are asking for is Socialism. Socialism does not work, just like the majority of your protesters. You are proposing all of these rewards with no effort. You do not deserve anything in life. You get what you work for. Stop trying to prove you deserve everything by being parasites to the hardworking men and women of this country who are doing what they can to survive despite the best efforts of our current administration.

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

"What you are asking for is Socialism. Socialism does not work"

Socialism does work.

NASA works, the National Science Foundation works, schools work, public universities work, Veterans Hospitals work, police departments work, fire departments work, the FBI works, the CIA works, the military works, the post office works, garbage collection works. And the Nordic countries, which have the most socialism of all the developed countries, have the highest standard of living in the world, the highest quality of life in the world and the citizens with the most happiness in the world directly because they have the most socialism in the developed world.

Capitalism doesn't work and never has worked.

All our wealth and progress has come from science, not capitalism. Capitalism just allocates that wealth unequally.

Despite the fact that we have the resources and technology to produce a near unlimited amount of anything, capitalism has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

Just in case you missed that, 97% of all workers make a below average income.

That is not because everyone in society is a loser.

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

And this system is designed to work 100% of the time for all the people born into one of the families of those lucky few, regardless of how hard-working, responsible or effective they are.

It is an incredibly unfair system. It simply does not work.

It doesn't work for me. It doesn't work for you. It doesn't work for 97% of all workers.

The only way the economy will work for everyone is if we allocate income equally based on effort.

[-] 2 points by gagablogger (207) 2 years ago

Yesyesyesyesyes. All our wealth comes from science and...off the backs of the working people.

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

Wasn't Nasa's budget zeroed out this year, because it was too costly? Isn't the American public school system among the lowest quality in the world? On one specific occasion, wasn't a Vet Hospital busted for horrible sanitation issues? Isn't the CIA constantly losing information and being taken by surprise (Wiki-leaks, Egyptian Revolution)? Are you aware that the Nordic countries have among the highest cost of living in the world? Doesn't the post office lose money every year?

The answer is: yes. Government programs are never efficient and never have been.

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

Comparing American socialist schools to another country's socialist schools is not helping your point.

Not wanting to pay for NASA does not mean they haven't produced incredibly innovative and successful work that everyone benefits from.

Socialism is not perfect. Either is capitalism. It is just infinitely better.

The post office successfully delivers mail cheaply, efficiently and reliably. They do not lose money every year. The reason why they are losing money currently is because the government keeps dipping into their kitty.

Markets are a more efficient way to allocate goods and services. I do not advocate the elimination of the market.

[-] 1 points by gagablogger (207) 2 years ago

Yes and the public school system isn't the best in the world because it is grossly underfunded!

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 2 years ago

Democracy is a form of government. Capitalism is an economic system. You cannot replace an economic system with a forum of government. When you try to you get fascism.

[-] 1 points by jeremycf5f (6) 2 years ago

...socialism

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

You got it backwards. Fascism is applying the totalitarian, authoritarian dictatorship found in every American business to society.

Capitalism is as much a political system as democracy. Economics is short for the term political economy.

Politics and economics are inseparable. Democracy simply means the economy is in the control of everyone equally, as opposed to capitalism where control is concentrated in the hands of a few.

Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a management system where power rests with everyone equally. It can be used to run a government, an economy, a single business, a family, or it can be used to decide what to cook for dinner.

Capitalism is a management system too. But the difference is that power in capitalism is allocated unequally. So democracy, in essence, is the exact opposite of capitalism.

For the most part, the democratic economy would run largely as it does now. Consumers will decide what is produced based on how they spend their money. Entrepreneurs with new ideas will go to banks for funding. Companies will be individually run and managed. Companies must generate enough revenue to cover expenses in order to stay in business. Managers will be responsible for hiring, firing and company performance. And companies will still compete for your business.

However, there will be three primary differences that make it democratic: 1) Income - your source of economic power - will be allocated equally based on effort so that everyone is guaranteed a very high income. 2) Investment will no longer come from personal savings. 3) A group of managers will be elected to ensure that the general direction of the economy is also accountable to the public.

[-] 1 points by The2percent (17) from Mt Vernon, GA 2 years ago

Right. So a garbage man who puts in 40 hours of hard work a week should be paid as much as a doctor who puts in 40 hours of hard work?

Recipe for failure.

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

If you asked any doctor today if they would choose to do the hard labor of picking up people's garbage all day for $230k or choose to spend their day saving people's lives for $230k, I don't think you can get a single doctor to choose being a garbage man.

It turns out some people actually enjoy science and medicine more than picking up garbage. I know, shocking.

But the even more important point is that there will be no jobs like garbage men or waiters in a democratic economy. Those menial jobs will be immediately automated with existing technology.

People only do that type of work out of desperation.

Wasting a human life, the most sophisticated piece of machinery in the universe, on moving a plate of food from one end of the room to another is a criminal waste of the most valuable resource we have.

Waiters along with 55% of all the jobs we do will be immediately automated with existing technology.

This will create a constant stream of newly unemployed workers. So another thing we will hold the overall economy accountable for is full employment. We will invest whatever amount is necessary to maintain full employment.

This will keep the economy growing, more efficient and more dynamic than the current economy.

[-] 1 points by The2percent (17) from Mt Vernon, GA 2 years ago

You are such a dumbass its unbelievable. Democracy refers to a political system that responds to the issue of how to keep the government from oppressing its subjects (i.e. how to prevent tyranny). We live in a representative democracy. Capitalism is an economic system. It deals with how to allocate scarce resources. The two, while related, are different models. Democracy can not repace capitalism as an economic model because it is not an economic model.

I guess the system is flawed if you managed to graduate from a public high school in this country because that is basic civics.

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

Capitalism is as much a political system as democracy. Economics is short for the term political economy.

Politics and economics are inseparable. Democracy simply means the economy is in the control of everyone equally, as opposed to capitalism where control is concentrated in the hands of a few.

Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a management system where power rests with everyone equally. It can be used to run a government, an economy, a single business, a family, or it can be used to decide what to cook for dinner.

Capitalism is a management system too. But the difference is that power in capitalism is allocated unequally. So democracy, in essence, is the exact opposite of capitalism.

For the most part, the democratic economy would run largely as it does now. Consumers will decide what is produced based on how they spend their money. Entrepreneurs with new ideas will go to banks for funding. Companies will be individually run and managed. Companies must generate enough revenue to cover expenses in order to stay in business. Managers will be responsible for hiring, firing and company performance. And companies will still compete for your business.

However, there will be three primary differences that make it democratic: 1) Income - your source of economic power - will be allocated equally based on effort so that everyone is guaranteed a very high income. 2) Investment will no longer come from personal savings. 3) A group of managers will be elected to ensure that the general direction of the economy is also accountable to the public.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 2 years ago

Fascism calls for the marriage of the corporate and the state.

"Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power." -- Benito Mussolini

From wikipedia

"The fascists opposed both international socialism and liberal capitalism, arguing that their views represented a third way. They claimed to provide a realistic economic alternative that was neither laissez-faire capitalism nor communism.[12] They favoured corporatism and class collaboration, believing that the existence of inequality and separate social classes was beneficial (contrary to the views of socialists).[13] Fascists argued that the state had a role in mediating relations between these classes (contrary to the views of liberal capitalists).[14]"

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

When they say "Fascism calls for the marriage of the corporate and the state" they mean they will turn government and society into a corporation.

It doesn't mean the reverse. It doesn't mean they are going to turn the corporation into a democracy.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 2 years ago

Well that is contrary to how fascist regimes operated with regard to business.

The high level wheeling and dealing in the NAZI party system among businessmen who played the game and the destruction of the businessmen who did not was legendary. Your factory was told to construct X many of Y and if you did it you were rewarded if you didn't you went away and the new owner would.

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

I think you are missing my point. I'm sure their business deals were not fair.

But that has nothing to do with the fact that fascism attempts to run society like a boss runs his employees, dictating everything they must do.

Fascism is not an attempt to run business like a democracy where everyone has equal power from lowly janitor to CEO. It is the exact opposite.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 2 years ago

Which is no different than monarchy or most forms of oligarchy, dictatorship, and yes democracy, and republics. Government actors dictate to the rest of us - its the natural result of the consolidation of power - and it isn't at all unique to fascism.

Governments cannot be run like businesses as business does not have the availability to use force to compel participation like the government does. Business survives only be getting consumers to voluntarily engage with it and it (should) make changes based on the feedback of rate and type of that voluntary engagement. Government lacks this feedback mechanism because it can compel engagement - how many of today's youth would voluntarily sign up for systems like SS where they know they won't see any of their money back? Without force used for the draft in Vietnam how many people would have gone?

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

A modern, liberal democracy based on freedom and equality is the opposite of fascism. It is a system where power is held equally by everyone. It is not the consolidation of power. Capitalism, with its system on consolidating wealth, results in a consolidation of power.

A democracy uses the market to allocate goods and services. So consumers decide what to produce based on their voluntary purchases and businesses cannot force anyone to buy anything.

You can have a required pension system (and I think you should). But that does not mean you are a totalitarian, fascist society.

I don't think people won't see their social security. It needs to be made fair. Rich people should pay the same percentage as everyone else and then it will always be solvent.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 2 years ago

Again your talking about a political system and an economic system and confusing the two. You can have anarchism and communism, you can have anarchism and capitalism, you can have a liberal democracy based on freedom and equality with either of those as well.

Let me ask you if you would willingly enter into an agreement for a retirement policy if its terms were: subject to change based on voters, did not pay your estate anything should you die early while not married, posts poor averaged returns than the DOW, any returns you get are dependent on the existence of future contributors when you are of age?

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

Again, democracy means equal power. A democratic economic system simply means we have equal economic power. Incomes - your source of economic power - are equal.

Just like you get equal votes in a democratic government, you get equal dollar votes in a democratic economy.

However, since income is a way to compensate work, you get equal pay for equal work.

Yes, I would agree to that retirement plan if my pension income was tied to cost of living. If the retirement population increases relative to the worker population, the pension tax must be raised. The DOW is way too volatile.

[-] 1 points by Meeky (186) from Los Angeles, CA 2 years ago

We have identified the bad component. We have the capability to repair it.

There is no need to replace the whole machine.

Thanks for attending the Occupy protests.

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

This system has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

Just in case you missed that, 97% of all workers make a below average income.

That is not because we have lobbying. It is because we a system whose goal is inequality.

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

And this system is designed to work 100% of the time for all the people born into one of the families of those lucky few, regardless of how hard-working, responsible or effective they are.

It is an incredibly unfair system. It simply does not work.

Tell me specifically what the bad component is and how it specifically will eliminate the problems I listed in the beginning of this comment.

[-] 1 points by The2percent (17) from Mt Vernon, GA 2 years ago

This is the greatest time period in history. You are flat out wrong. "This System" that you like to defile, has created a nation in which our extreme poor would be considered wealthy in 80% of the world's nations. No nation or system in the history of the world has allowed the working class to attain as much leisure and luxury as "this system". The poor in America live in sturdy residences, have access to water, can afford food and clothes, and can do all of this without being exceptionally talented or skilled in any marketable skill.

Do you know how fortunate we are?

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

You have no clue if you think the poor, unemployed and uninsured are "fortunate."

""This System" that you like to defile, has created a nation in which our extreme poor would be considered wealthy in 80% of the world's nations"

All our wealth comes from science and technology, not from capitalism. Capitalism just allocates that income unequally and unfairly.

And the difference between our country and poor ones is how long our country has been using the methods of science to industrialize. Poor countries are poor because they are undeveloped, not because they are not capitalist.

"No nation or system in the history of the world has allowed the working class to attain as much leisure and luxury"

The working class of all the Nordic countries, as well as some other countries in Europe and the middle east have a higher standard of living than the working class in the US.

And France has roughly 3 times more leisure time than workers in the US do.

[-] 1 points by The2percent (17) from Mt Vernon, GA 2 years ago

Right. But you fail to realize that we are the hegemonic leaders of the scientific and technological revolution that all other countries benefit from. AND THE ONLY REASON WE HAVE SUCH A HIGH LEVEL OF ACHIEVEMENT IS CAPITALISM. It is extremely profitable to be innovative in the United States. Just ask Bill Gates. Therefore, people have an incentive to create new technology that makes the world better. Without that capitalist incentive, that innovation does not occur. You are absolutely uneducated if you think that people would toil to create great works of scientific achievement at the risk of high costs if there was no economic incentive.

There's a reason the scientific and technological revolution of the modern era coincides with the advent of capitalism. You fool.

As for the nordic countries, they are completely dependent upon our economy to survive. Our contry would fail as a socialist country because we are large, diverse, and because our labor is scarce. It simply would not work. A situation that survives in small, ethnically homogenous nations where everyone gets along DOES NOT WORK IN LARGE DIVERSE COUNTRIES WHERE EVERYONE HAS A DIFFERENT OPINION.

The reason the Europeans can live like that is because the American economy drives down the proce of consumer goods and allows that lifestyle to be possible. We benefit everyone on this planet that enjoys cheap consumer goods and a high standard of living.

And you're simply retarded if you think an impoverished person in America is even CLOSE to anyone from a developing country. Everyone in America has access to education and is faced with a choice to either succeed or fail. 80% of the world gets no such choice.

Socialism restricts hard work, innovation, and technological progress. Ask the Soviets. Oh wait...they failed because their economy completely stagnated.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Obliviousness to the value of profit-seeking in motivating innovation is a very common mind-set around here. They think that somehow paying everybody the same will cure all of society's ills.

[-] 1 points by gagablogger (207) 2 years ago

Troll alert troll alert.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Troll? That was an extreme misapplication of the word "troll". That was an intelligent response that just happens to conclude that the original air is a fool. Not all ad hominem attacks are trolling, some are legitimate, considered opinions.

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

Your blind worship of this country, like the blind worship of anything, is clouding your ability to think critically. This comment is so over-the-top it sounds more like you are now just trying to parody right-wingers.

But for the sake of answering questions, I will assume you are genuine.

"It is extremely profitable to be innovative in the United States. Just ask Bill Gates. Therefore, people have an incentive to create new technology"

That of course is completely false. Doing science and inventing things is intrinsically rewarding. Not only do you not have to pay people a profit to be innovative, you don't even have to pay them at all. Just ask the owners of all the open source companies that out-competed Bill Gates and his billions, and they did it for free, like Wikipedia over encarta, linux over windows, apache over windows server, mysql over sql server, firefox over explorer, python over vb, php over asp or open office over office.

"Socialism restricts hard work, innovation, and technological progress"

Most innovation and technology would not be possible if it was not for the socialism of organizations like NASA, the military or NSF who do most of the medical research, all the basic science research, and even invented little things things like the internet and the integrated circuit which makes all electronics, computers and their miniaturization possible.

"Ask the Soviets"

And after 20 years of capitalism they only recently managed to get to the same point they were at when the soviet union ended in 1991. Some soviet states are still below the level they were at in 1991. So capitalism has sent them nowhere economically in 20 years.

[-] 1 points by Meeky (186) from Los Angeles, CA 2 years ago

Yes, I know.

No more tax cuts for the rich, better work friendly laws, and less outsourcing won't completely fix everything.

But I rather fix this mess than the aftermath of a revolution.

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

By revolution, I don't mean storming the gates of the white house with guns and burning down the cities. I mean it in the figurative sense.

There will be no mess to clean up. For 99.99%, it will be business as usual. Your paycheck will just increase.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

You sound like you're running for President or something. This is not a realistic idea. And it's an idea that's so far out in left field that it serves to discredit Occupy Wall Street. When potential supporters come here to find out what this movement is all about, this might be one of the first proposals that they encounter. It was one of the first proposals that I encountered. From the point of view of an independent or a centrist, this idea is a caricature. It's the kind of parody that Republicans might fabricate to discredit Occupy Wall Street.

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

It is not a caricature to say that 97% of workers make a below average income, it is a fact.

It is not a caricature to say that if everyone had the democratic right to equal income for equal work, that every worker would be wealthy and the economy would work well for everyone. It is a mathematical fact.

Media personalities and billionaires have convinced you that unless we have a system where they consume most of the wealth and unless you, along with the remaining 97% of the workforce, make below average incomes and struggle or live in poverty, that the economy would not work.

That is simply not true and a caricature of reality.

They also tell you that if we allocate income in any way other than the way it is now, that society will turn into a stalin dictatorship with labor camps, murdering political dissenters and secret police.

That is simply not true and a caricature of reality.

They also tell you that it is fair and is the source of your freedom because everyone has the freedom to make as much as they do.

That is also simply not true and a caricature of reality.

Capitalism, soviet communism, chinese socialism, fascism, they are all unfair systems of inequality. Liberal democracy is the source of the only good in this world, where people are given the EQUAL right to FREEDOM - the freedom to live how you want without political coercion or restraint and without economic coercion or restraint.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

What is there to vote on, if everybody makes $115k no matter what?

Did you ever read Animal Farm? Do you remember the first thing that happened when the animals made all animals equal?

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

When you step out of your Rush Limbaugh fog and actually read my post and the seemingly dozens of comments I wrote to you explaining the same point over and over and over and over again, you will understand that not everyone is paid $115k.

And you shouldn't get your education from fictional cartoon animals.

[-] 1 points by PierpontLuv (38) 2 years ago

Income is not allocated. Income is earned. Check the dictionary. Even the most simple definition explains it well: Income: the monetary payment received for goods or services, or from other sources, as rents or investments. You earn income, you are not entitled to income.

[-] 1 points by JoblessBrigade (34) from New York, NY 2 years ago

What you earn and what you get are two different things. The profit extracted from labor is one of the biggest money-makers for the American corporations. Are you trying to tell me that a cashier who scans hundreds to thousands of items an hour, (say, in Walmart), only "earns" the same amount for the company as the minimum wage pays? Give me a break.

[-] 1 points by PierpontLuv (38) 2 years ago

That cashier receives an allocation that is based on market demand...i.e., how much x corp has to pay y person to do a job. X corp has no responsibility to pay more than that

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

"X corp has no responsibility to pay more than that"

And that is the problem.

We should have a market in goods and services. We should not have a market in people.

It is inhumane to treat people like commodities, like heads of cattle or bushels of wheat, where your entire standard of living and means of survival depends on your ability to sell yourself in an open market.

That market system of labor has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

Just in case you missed that, 97% of all workers make a below average income.

And the more "free" the labor market gets, the worse those statistics will get.

That is not because everyone in society is a loser.

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

And this system is designed to work 100% of the time for all the people born into one of the families of those lucky few, regardless of how hard-working, responsible or effective they are.

It is an incredibly unfair system. It simply does not work.

We should replace capitalism and its market system for people with democracy because we are civilized and humane and all humans deserve the dignity of being treated equally.

Income should be allocated democratically. If you and I both work 40 hours, in jobs of similar difficulty, successfully accomplishing the jobs we are hired to do, we deserve the same pay. If you allocated income based on effort, everyone would be wealthy.

[-] 1 points by JoblessBrigade (34) from New York, NY 2 years ago

"Responsibility" and good ethics are sometimes contrary to one another. Just because the labor supply outstrips the demand, it doesn't make it right to pay starvation wages. If the people's needs are not satisfied, the conditions for "good business" will deteriorate, leading to more losses than an increased wage would have cost in the first place. When society breaks down, as it did in inner city neighborhoods in the past, business owners close up shop and flee. Where are they going to run now? They have already stripped the nation of most of our manufacturing base. What is next, the abandonment of everything else? I know you will give the usual line about the profit motive being the only motivating factor for corporate management, but at some point the needs of society must take precedence.

[-] 1 points by PierpontLuv (38) 2 years ago

I won't bother with the "usual line". I will say that I appreciate your constructive replies. Many of your brothers/sisters cannot move beyond name-calling and profanity.

[-] 1 points by JoblessBrigade (34) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Well, what is your reply? I may have been presumptuous, as you are putting me in with "brothers and sisters", when I assumed your "business administration" pedigree, but it is all about getting to the crux of the matter.

[-] 1 points by PierpontLuv (38) 2 years ago

Profit motive is not only the only motivating factor for corporate management, it is the only real motivating factor for individuals (though the substance of profit may vary depending on the individual). The OWS protestors are motivated by the hope that by standing around being unproductive they will somehow receive more...that would be pure profit.

[-] 1 points by JoblessBrigade (34) from New York, NY 2 years ago

That is pure BS. The unemployed are tired of being turned down for employment that does not exist, they are coming out into the air in solidarity with others who are suffering through this recession with them. To be that callous about the situation probably means you are one of the lucky ones who is still working, and you don't want to give up anything to help others out. Remember, nobody is indispensable, it could be you next, and after you email out your 2000th resume, you will find out what it is like.

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

I would encourage you to read the actual post.

Income is paid based on effort. You get it from working. It is earned.

What you are entitled to is a fair income from your work. That is what this post proposes.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

That's not what your actual post says. Your actual post says that everybody gets paid a fixed salary. Your system doesn't include any form of performance-based compensation. You're not allowing me, as an employer, to incentivize -- anything. You're not allowing me to reward people for succeeding.

You seem to be looking at the entire economy from the point of view of a labor union, saying "we demand to be paid $X/year"!

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

Labor unions built the middle class, so what they do works.

But I'm not sure if we are just arguing semantics or if my points are just not getting through.

Not everyone gets paid a fixed salary. Some jobs are paid based on performance.

Managers will have the ability to compensate their employees the way they want within the democratically determined compensation plan. They will decide how much work is required of them in order to get their paycheck. And in performance based jobs, how much production they need to do in order to reach the top pay.

The difference with today's system is that you cannot make 10,000 more than someone else.

You can get maximum effort out of people by giving them the opportunity to earn twice their income or three times their income. You don't need to pay people 10,000 times more. There is only so much effort you can get from someone in a work day. There is only so much harder a person can work. You can get that maximum effort without having to pay them 10,000 times more.

And when incomes are more reasonably allocated, and you are not paying some people 10,000 times more than others, there is enough income to make every single worker wealthy at a minimum.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

This is an attempt to treat the entire workforce of the entire country as a labor union, mandating pay brackets for every possible job?

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

Every job does not get its own pay bracket. There may be 2 or 3 job categories based on difficulty. And every job falls within them.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

And then from there, there is no way for anybody to make more money, no matter how much they produce or how well they perform? We would all be paid like union factory workers?

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

The maximum pay is designed to get the maximum performance out of the workers. If you reach the top pay, you are giving everything you got.

[-] 1 points by ycl114 (3) from Istanbul, Istanbul 2 years ago

i dont want to believe the person who wrote this is more than 15 years old.

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

I don't want to believe that despite the fact that we have the resources and technology to produce a near unlimited amount of anything, capitalism has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

[-] 1 points by ycl114 (3) from Istanbul, Istanbul 2 years ago

what do you understand from capitalism? when did capitalism started for you? and what are the statistics you count above for the period before capitalism? i would be glad to know your opinions.

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

I don't fully understand your question.

All of our wealth and progress comes from science not capitalism. Capitalism just allocates that wealth unequally and unfairly.

[-] 1 points by viv (5) 2 years ago

This is communist. Hobbes would have sth to say on why it would not work. check your history, how democracy comes about?

even tho, i have my reserve for the 14th amendment, but if people are not allowed to have private property, capital.. it is communist. the movement would be viewed as communist. not a good rep at all..

i thought that this is about corruption.

on 14th amendment, not that corporation as personhood is a good idea. but some sort of middle ground needed to be found...

btw... you do know how Fox news is going to use this, right?

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

You can have all the property you want.

You just cannot generate unearned income from your property. You can only generate income from working, and you will be paid enough for working to live a very wealthy lifestyle, better than how 97% of the population lives today. That is the only fair way to run an economy.

Fox News is in charge of the crazies, not the country.

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 is 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 coolnyc (216) from Stone Ridge, NY 2 years ago

Capitalization needs to be fixed, not replaced. Communism has already been proved a dead end. This looks like something in between, but damn if I can figure out how you could ever make that work. Not saying that that isn't how things should be, just can't see it happening. We are too complicated and conflicted and irrational.

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

I don't know what you mean by capitalization needs to be replaced.

Yes, we are too complicated and conflicted and irrational, but we also all want more income. And that is what this will deliver.

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 is 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.

[-] 1 points by coolnyc (216) from Stone Ridge, NY 2 years ago

Capitalism not capitalization (thumb typing and auto-replace issues here!) Thanks for the explanation on Communism - that I understand. I'm also coming to understand your concept of a national compensation plan. But I'm not sure such a thing is, even if a good idea, remotely feasible. Certainly not now. Before we have any meaningful change in this country, we first need to reform or replace our government. After you have a government that is responsive to it's constituents, and not the people who fund campaigns, you can fix the financial system.

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

I like the idea equal pay for equal effort. Do we have to have a revolution to make that happen??

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

I advocate a peaceful revolution, a revolution in the figurative sense, not a literal revolution where we storm the white house gates with guns.

[-] 1 points by MJMorrow (419) 2 years ago

Why should we be revolutionaries? We have some crooked politicians and a financial and industrial system in love with growing foreign markets and eliminating jobs. So we need to use our existing institutions, Wall Street and Corporate America to fix our problems. There needs to be a serious focus on the USA, but do we need to throw the baby out with the bath water? I attended school with the family members of US politicians. They can be stubborn and isolated from common experience, highly influenced by special interests and the seduction of wealth, so they are decidedly human beings, as it turns out, but are they all insane? lol No one is proposing a plan to help the interest of Wall Street, Corporate America and the political elite. I am actually working on such a plan, but I am not finished. I need to ask for input from some former CEOS and a few economists. Now, understand, I am unemployed and I knew big shots, growing up and going for my MBA. Heck, my Dean was a friend of Bill Clinton, but I need a career! We need to ensure that our plan will be in the best interests of the people running this country.

You are not pulling off a revolution, so long as the US Military answers to the US Government, understand? LOL I hear people posting that we don't need leaders, because the Government will break us up and crack down on us. I have had some pretty heated debates with the family members of our political leaders and if they were running a stealth totalitarian regime I would be in Guantanimo by now! lol We have nothing to fear from the US Government, so long as we are rational, law abiding and really focused on getting back to work and making the USA great again. The US Government isn't going to mow me down in the street for coming up with a way to create high paying jobs in the USA! =) There is nothing that I am working on that I would not share with the FBI and there is nothing that any of us should be doing that we could not do in front of HLS, that goes without question.

I am working on things to help all of us, so are the vast majority of you, but I am at a crossroads, shall we say, regarding next steps. I would love to hear from the US Government, to meet with CEOs, to create a grand discussion. I would love to sit down with Robert Reich and Peter Navarro. I would love to meet Mayor Bloomberg and so many other people, but I will have to start with the people I can access and work from there. Think locally, act responsibly. We need to work within our great Government institutions, within the rule of law and we need to influence our financial and industrial institutions. Revolutions are for countries where there is no rule of law or sense of right and wrong. US politicians are still prosecuted for wrong doing and crooked businessmen do go to prison. We have a functioning Nation State, but we are ailing and we need to make ourselves better. We don't need to be revolutionaries, but we do need to think of a good plan to get our country back to work. We need a plan that will help the political elite, Wall Street and Main Street. Best Regards, MJ

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

Capitalism doesn't work and never has worked.

All our wealth and progress has come from science, not capitalism. Capitalism just allocates that wealth unequally.

Despite the fact that we have the resources and technology to produce a near unlimited amount of anything, capitalism has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

Just in case you missed that, 97% of all workers make a below average income.

[-] 1 points by smate1 (72) 2 years ago

Ridiculous. Revolution leads to collapse. Collapse leads to misery. We need to join together to get the $ out of elections. We can unite both sides on this one focused message while we have the chance and gain our voices back. Only then will true change be possible.

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

Capitalism doesn't work and never has worked.

It has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

Just in case you missed it, 97% of all workers make a below average income.

After you are done getting money out of elections, not a single one of those problems will be eliminated.

A revolution would not collapse anything but the raw deal everyone is getting.

[-] 1 points by smate1 (72) 2 years ago

If Politicians were not dependent on big money interests to keep their jobs, and our voices were not ignored as they are now, we would not be in the mess we are in. We should at least give it a try before we reach for our guns.

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

I advocate a peaceful revolution, a revolution in the figurative sense, not a literal revolution where we storm the white house gates with guns.

[-] 1 points by smate1 (72) 2 years ago

Glad to hear it. I am only trying to find ways for us to join together and make real change while we have the chance. Some words only divide us, but I applaude your passion and concern.

[-] 1 points by Lifestream (85) from Milan, IL 2 years ago

See that won't work because we really need to drop monetary currency. It's the cause of all our social problems and will continue to be the root cause in any other kind of economic structure that uses currency. So what we really should adopt is a Resource Based Economy, that would fix everything, not just the equal labor/wage ratios. Because social concerns are still an issue in your proposal.

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

You need money to ration goods and services and to pay people so that you have enough workers. They have not provided any evidence that eliminating money is better than using money.

[-] 1 points by Lifestream (85) from Milan, IL 2 years ago

Yes they have. look up the organizations that support an RBE and you'll find the information.

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

There is no company that provides evidence for any of the claims made by the venus project.

[-] 1 points by Lifestream (85) from Milan, IL 2 years ago

You're right there's no company, because they're all too busy destroying the earth instead of saving it. Think larger.

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

I meant organization. What organization has demonstrated with evidence the proposals of TVP are feasible?

Think reasonably. There is no evidence to support their claims.

There is no difference in outcomes between what is advocated here and in what is advocated by them. Automation is made a priority so we can immediately eliminate 50% of the jobs we do.

But workers are paid an income because we cannot automate enough to rely on volunteers alone. Production would plummet if we didn't pay workers.

[-] 1 points by spritzler (12) from Boston, MA 2 years ago

I agree with you, but suggest taking what you say a bit further in "Thinking about Revolution" at www.NewDemocracyWorld.org

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

"Most Americans want a society based on real democracy and equality and on the solidarity and friendship that already exist among ordinary people."

That is a great line.

I'm going to read through your site. But I saw in a table of contents you mention eliminating money. Is that what you mean by taking it a bit further?

Is there any way for you to give me a quick, bullet point overview of what you propose?

I have read many ideas about eliminating money, even Otto Neurath in the economic calculation debate. Of course the venus project has popularized it somewhat recently. But I'm just not convinced at all that it is better than using money. Perhaps, you have a new take on it.

[-] 1 points by lifeofliberty (5) 2 years ago

The author said:

If we replaced capitalism with democracy:

Everyone in society would be wealthy as a birth right
You would get paid an income of at least $115,000 per year
The work week could be cut in half
People would no longer have to do menial work
There would be no difference between work and play
Interest would be eliminated which would cut your mortgage in half
Crime would be virtually non-existent
We could fast-track the transition to a green, renewable economy
You would get paid to go to school, not the other way around
There would be no such thing as recessions or unemployment
And nearly every social problem we have would be gone

All of the above claims are patently false. Democracy is simple "majority rule", whereas 51% will tell 49% how things will be, how they will run, who is rich, who is not and so forth.

Democracy is not what America needs and never has.

The points above are quite ridiculous. Money does not just "appear" out of nowhere. It is a measure of human labor, and thus, the $115k per year on "half a work week" is a ridiculous claim, as is "everyone would be born wealthy".

Crime will always exist in a modern society, because crime is profitable. The author assumes that because every one has money and little work, crime will disappear. This too is quite false.

Any society built upon the concepts of money, wealth, private property, ownership and control will suffer from greed, which will drive crimes of all sorts. Inequality will also drive crime, but even in an "equal society", crime will exist.

Moreover, all democracy's fail. They do not work much better then what we have today (which needs to be replaced, in this the author and I agree).

Capitalism is not a "form of government" as the author implies either, it is an extension of society, the demand to create advantage in societies that have private wealth. Since our society is leveraged by money (driven by greed), the democratic society proposed by the author will have the same problems, even should capitalism be somehow abolished.

The proposed "redistribution of all existing wealth" is also unworkable and highly unrealistic, because of many factors, such as geographical constraints, and private ownership and its associated restrictions. If such a scheme were somehow adopted, the price of a loaf of bread would be astronomical ($10,000 per loaf for example), as would everything else, making this proposal self-defeating to its objectives.

The cost of goods is based upon human labor, available resources, manufacturing / production costs, transportation and shipping, even shelf life. The author glosses over all of these with their "democracy" assuming that "all things would then be equal", which is completely false. Labor, resource, manufacturing, production, distribution, transportation, shipping and shelf life are not "equal" and never will be.

Redistributing wealth will simply make everyone very poor as the costs of goods skyrockets.

The only valide point made is this: A green society is desperately needed, whereas common objectives, healthy living, caretaking of all (the entire biosphere, where applicable, ie., nature does not "need" our help if we simply leave it alone, but other damaged aspects of our environment most definitely do, including humans) is practiced.

Interest could be ELIMINATED, which would go VERY far to reducing debt, breaking the banking cartels and the entire fiat money system.

[-] 1 points by FuManchu (619) 2 years ago

Most of those demands are impractical and naive. No one is going to take demands like "everyone should make 115K" seriously. Why not add "Everyone shall be happy all the time"

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

"the democratic society proposed by the author will have the same problems [of greed]"

There are no profits, everyone gets a fixed income. I don't know how you can say that will produce the same greed as capitalism.

"The proposed "redistribution of all existing wealth" is also unworkable because of geographical constraints"

What does geography have to do with the way income is allocated?

"the price of a loaf of bread would be astronomical ($10,000 per loaf for example)"

You don't explain why you think that. If you think because of inflation, that is not true. All we are doing is reallocating existing income. That doesn't change the overall price of anything. On average, prices will remain the same.

For example, if you and I both ran a company and you were paid $90k and I was paid $10k, our total costs would be $100k.

If we decided to reallocate income so that we were both paid $50k each, our costs will still remain $100k. Since our costs don't change, our prices don't change.

"resource, manufacturing, production, distribution, transportation, shipping and shelf life are not "equal" and never will be."

I never said the cost of everything is the same. The cost of everything is the total amount of labor hours it takes to produce. If product A takes 10 hours to produce and product B takes 5 hours, product A is twice the cost of product B.

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

"Crime will always exist in a modern society"

I agree. But most of it will disappear since most of it is theft by people who are broke. People who make $115k or $230k do not hold up gas stations or do carjackings.

"all democracy's fail. They do not work much better then what we have today"

What we have today has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

Guaranteeing every worker a job that pays $115k or $230k solves every single one of those problems.

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

Here are some numbers that the automating 55% jobs is based on:

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 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.

  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.

  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.

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

here is the automation section that got cut off:

And so long as we have democratic control over how much our jobs pay, we should have democratic control over what jobs we do.

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.

Wasting a human life, the most sophisticated piece of machinery in the universe, on moving a plate of food from one end of the room to another is a criminal waste of the most valuable resource we have.

If we made a deliberate effort to automate every job possible, we could cut the work week in half. And the only work people would have to do is 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.

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

"Money does not just "appear" out of nowhere. It is a measure of human labor, and thus, the $115k per year on "half a work week" is a ridiculous claim, as is "everyone would be born wealthy"."

The $115k and $230k is based on the total US income in 2010. It does not come out of nowhere. That is what the incomes amount to when you allocate total income in the manner described in the post.

When you are born into an economy that produces $15 trillion in wealth each year and you are given a right to an equal portion of that, you are born wealthy.

The explanation for the half work week section got cut off because this forum limits post size. It is somewhat speculative. But it is based on the claim that we can automate 55% of the jobs we do using existing automation technology.

[-] 1 points by asauti (-113) from Port Orchard, WA 2 years ago

Yes, this poster is ridiculous. It surprises me that so many people are even taking the time to respond. Please people, realize that this person is spewing nonsense and consider that they might be some sort of mole...or whatever you want to call someone who is of no value to intelligent discussion. Or they could be just shamelessly promoting their DemandTheGoodLife.Com website. (which in itself, is also ridiculous)

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

"Democracy is simple "majority rule", whereas 51% will tell 49% how things will be, how they will run, who is rich, who is not and so forth."

Democracy is not mob rule or rule of the majority. It is equal power.

It means every citizen gets an equal freedom to act, speak, and think; equal treatment under the law; equal votes; and equal income for equal effort.

Two wolves and a sheep cannot vote to eat the sheep for dinner because that would violate the sheep's equal right to treatment under the law. The law protects the rights of the minority to the same degree as the majority.

You can vote to have some job category pay less, but you cannot vote to have a single person earn less or a race of people to earn less because that would violate their right to EQUAL treatment under the law and EQUAL pay for equal effort.

If you worked the job whose pay was lowered, you can get a job doing something whose pay was not lowered. Or you can sue on the grounds that it violates your right to equal pay for equal effort. Then you would have to demonstrate how your job requires the same effort as others that get paid more. If you are successful, the ruling will be overturned and your income for that job category would be restored.

There is still separation of powers. You still have a separate government, separate justice system and separate economic system.

[-] 1 points by asauti (-113) from Port Orchard, WA 2 years ago

I just realized something about this post.

This person is making a mockery about the perceived goals of Occupy Wall Street. Take a step back and think about what this person is actually promoting.

Oh, and look up the website of the poster's username.

[-] 1 points by asauti (-113) from Port Orchard, WA 2 years ago

To quote you: "Let's be clear. Capitalism is a system of concentrating power. The goal is to maximize your individual wealth. And the more income you have, the more income you are able to generate. And with that income comes the power to control everything."

So in your new and improved system, am I still free to maximize my individual wealth through my hard work and savings and investments?

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

Yes, you are guaranteed the ability to maximize your wealth through hard work by working a job that will pay you $115k or $230k per year which is significantly more than what 97% of all workers in this country earn today.

You can save as much as you want. But there are no investments. All companies are publicly funded.

[-] 0 points by asauti (-113) from Port Orchard, WA 2 years ago

Define "investments", in such, where there could/would be "none".

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

A portion of total GDP will be set aside for investment. The level will be decided on democratically. That money will be allocated to banks for them to make investments with.

[-] 1 points by Mariannka (63) 2 years ago

I am amased at how Occupy works. Would like to have your input on the movement to understaqnd it better. I am asking you to answer 10 questions and I am happy to share results if you are interested. Please, take some time for it: Thank you! http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Q3NF7QB

[-] 1 points by andrewbb (16) 2 years ago

Capitalism is asking permission for cash.

[-] 1 points by TLydon007 (1278) 2 years ago

I have to admit. That one is a little out there.

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

I don't know what that means.

[-] 1 points by RichardGates (1529) from Fort Walton Beach, FL 2 years ago

one is economic, one is a governing structure. apples and oranges. i admire your passion tho.

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

Capitalism is as much a political system as democracy. Economics is short for the term political economy.

Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a management system where power rests with everyone equally. It can be used to run a government, an economy, a single business, a family, or it can be used to decide what to cook for dinner.

Capitalism is a management system too. But the difference is that power in capitalism is allocated unequally. So democracy, in essence, is the exact opposite of capitalism.

For the most part, the democratic economy would run largely as it does now. Consumers will decide what is produced based on how they spend their money. Entrepreneurs with new ideas will go to banks for funding. Companies will be individually run and managed. Companies must generate enough revenue to cover expenses in order to stay in business. Managers will be responsible for hiring, firing and company performance. And companies will still compete for your business.

However, there will be three primary differences that make it democratic: 1) Income - your source of economic power - will be allocated equally based on effort so that everyone is guaranteed a very high income. 2) Investment will no longer come from personal savings. 3) A group of managers will be elected to ensure that the general direction of the economy is also accountable to the public.

[-] 1 points by RichardGates (1529) from Fort Walton Beach, FL 2 years ago

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democratic_capitalism http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democratic_socialism stop being so arrogant as to post before being absolutely sure you have data to back up your claims. you do not create reality, not by spinning it or misunderstanding it.

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

I am not arrogant. I'm answering questions!

I have been doing this a long time. I am as informed on these issues as anyone. If you are saying that a democracy cannot be an economic system, you are wrong.

There was even a baseball team that was run democratically. It is not just a way to manage government. It can manage anything.

[-] 1 points by RichardGates (1529) from Fort Walton Beach, FL 2 years ago

how do you exchange democracy for goods? but you can exchange "Capital" for goods lol. :P

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

So your argument for why a democracy cannot be an economic system is that the word democracy doesn't have the name of an economic resource in it?

Well, to play along, demos is the root of democracy and it means people. People - labor - is an economic resource.

[-] 1 points by RichardGates (1529) from Fort Walton Beach, FL 2 years ago

ok but how do you spend it at walmart homie? you can't spend and abstract idea you a$$ hat.

[-] 1 points by cheeseus (109) 2 years ago

A true free market is the ultimate form of democracy. Every time you consume you are voting. Don't like a corporations ethics? Then don't give them your money. Support green energy? Then go buy a hybrid. Whatever the majority chooses the market will keep giving it. When they decide that choice has problems they will reject it and the market gets rid of it quicker than congress can pass a law.

Capitalism is about choice and the individual. When the individual makes wise choices he gets rewarded. He knows his hard work will give him access to things he can't build himself. He knows by investing in education he can achive great things. He wishes his neighbor was educated, but realizes his neighbors lack of knowledge has allowed his own hard work to be more valuable. He realizes that he doesn't have to depend on his fellow citizens working or lack of. He has chosen for himself what job he wants, how many hours he is willing to work and the terms. He does feel entitled to more becuase of his skills. Those skills gave him more and hopefully gives the unskilled incentive to gain them. To him, his labor is not play but a sacrifice for his own survival. He'll be damned if he is forced to work for another who refuses to. He knows if every citizen was paid the same amount that inflation would be absurd. $115,000 becomes equal to todays minimum wage. He saw it happen in Zimbawe. He questions why anyone would need education if everything is provided to us. He thinks a student loan is a voluntary agreement and investment citizens choose and if it's a burden they shouldn't have taken it on. He knows green energy has not been achieved because it's too costly, has logistic issues, technological limits and mainly because the majority have rejected i so far. He knows if green energy was so easy corporations would be flocking to it as energy is one of their main carrying costs eating their profits up. He also is a cynic and realizes that the earth has cycled between global cooling and warming for a billion years. That mother nature can spit out a volcano or other natural disaster that dwarfs anything corporations could do.

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

"He knows if green energy was so easy corporations would be flocking to it"

Oil and coal is cheaper so you can't compete with cheaper energy so you can't earn a profit in it so you won't see companies making a big push.

That doesn't mean we can't make the strategic decision to switch to green energy. It would just be more expensive. But it would eventually come down.

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

"He knows if every citizen was paid the same amount that inflation would be absurd. He saw it happen in Zimbawe."

Inflation happens when you increase the money supply greater than the amount of goods and services available to buy.

Reallocating EXISTING income does not increase the money supply! It does not cause inflation. Zimbabwe didn't get inflation because they tried to redistribute income. They just printed money.

If you spend $10k and I spend $90k, that is exactly the same as us both spending $50k each.

"He questions why anyone would need education if everything is provided to us."

Most jobs require an education, so if you want to work in most fields, you need an education.

"He thinks a student loan is a voluntary agreement and investment citizens choose and if it's a burden they shouldn't have taken it on"

Getting paid to go to school is a better system than paying to go to school since it is part of work. You don't pay to do a job so you shouldn't pay to get trained. Education for work is not a consumption item. It is work.

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

"He has chosen for himself what job he wants, how many hours he is willing to work and the terms."

You think people choose their outcomes in capitalism!?! lol

97% cannot make an above average income. 50% cannot make more than $33k. 25% of an entire race of people this system used to enslave cannot even make it out of poverty.

That is not because everyone in society is a loser or they all choose to struggle.

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

And this system is designed to work 100% of the time for all the people born into one of the families of those lucky few, regardless of how hard-working, responsible or effective they are.

It is an incredibly unfair system. It simply does not work.

It doesn't work for me. It doesn't work for you. It doesn't work for 97% of all workers.

The people who say it does work are in complete denial because it doesn't work for them either.

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

"A true free market is the ultimate form of democracy. Every time you consume you are voting"

That is true. But since democracy is equal power, a market is only democratic if your income - your source of economic power - was equal.

In capitalism, incomes are absurdly unequal. 97% of workers earn a below average income. So it is not democratic.

"Capitalism is about choice and the individual"

The choices and freedoms you have are limited by income.

Freedom is the ability to act without coercion or restraint. People who have little or no money have little or no freedom to act or do anything.

The ability of a kid in the ghetto to earn money is vastly different than the ability of a kid in the Trump family to earn money. A ghetto kid has little chance at freedom. A trump kid is given unlimited freedom at birth.

A poor girl in a capitalist country who cannot afford tuition has the same lack of freedom to an education as a girl in a Taliban ruled Afghanistan village where education for girls is banned.

Your income dictates how much freedom you have. And in capitalism, most of the income and freedom goes into the hands of a very, very small minority. 97% of all workers have a below average income.

Only democracy gives you true freedom, because it guarantees you enough income so that lack of income is not a restraint on your life.

[-] 1 points by eric1 (152) from Corona, CA 2 years ago

What you're advocating is socialism(which I have no problem with, although I prefer a socialist-capitalistic mix). Democracy is not necessarily socialistic. If the majority of people, vote to have fascism then you have fascism. Be careful what you ask for, especially with vote rigging still very prevalent in our country.

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

If you define socialism in the narrow sense of public ownership then yes it is. Historically, what I advocate in this post has been called democratic socialism.

However, democracy is not mob rule or rule of the majority or a system of voting. It is equal power.

It means every citizen gets an equal freedom to act, speak, and think; equal treatment under the law; equal votes; and equal income for equal effort.

Two wolves and a sheep cannot vote to eat the sheep for dinner because that would violate the sheep's equal right to treatment under the law. The law protects the rights of the minority to the same degree as the majority.

You cannot vote for fascism if it violates any of anyone's equal rights. If it did, you can sue as a rights violation and get whatever was voted repealed.

There is still separation of powers. You still have a separate government, separate justice system and separate economic system.

[-] 1 points by enigmaticblake (14) 2 years ago

Would you be will to have 49% of your companies owned directly by the individual employees that work within them? That would grow the middle class and increase demand. make labor unions obsolete. It would also align the interest or nearly everyone against big government high tax socialism. Bank could issue loan to the individual employees. 4.9% of stock per year to be sold the transition would take 10 years

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

Owning businesses is incredibly risky and most fail. That may help some. But it will hurt everyone else.

They need a stake in the entire economy instead.

[-] 1 points by enigmaticblake (14) 2 years ago

"According to statistics published by the Small Business Administration (SBA), seven out of ten new employer establishments survive at least two years and 51 percent survive at least five years. This is a far cry from the previous long-held belief that 50 percent of businesses fail in the first year and 95 percent fail within five years." There are way more successful existing business than ones that fail. Having employees with a vested interest would help the chances of success. If ford and GM had this they would have never went bankrupt.

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

Assuming your stats are correct, I don't know how many people want to be on the hook for a business that has a 50% chance of failing within 5 years.

If you just allocated income fairly, everyone would be wealthy. You wouldn't have to risk anything.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

I've shown this post to a few different people, and the most common reaction has been to suspect that the author is a parody, intentionally trying to discredit Occupy Wall Street.

I don't share that impression myself, I think that the author is earnest. But that's a sign of how unrealistic and over-the-top this post is, that people tend to not even believe that it could be for real.

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

You're right, I'm obviously for real. I'm not a parody.

It is without question a radical change. But it is all built on simple, verifiable claims.

It was suggested at the end of michael moore's capitalism movie. And that is pretty mainstream.

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

LOL..NOTHING main stream about him Michael Moore. He is another hypocrite, Demeaning the system and people that have led to him being worth $300 million. Not begrudgeing him his money, but don't be fooled by propaganda. remember both sides use it to make the populace fight amongst themselves. They want you to pay no mind to the man behind the curtain.

[-] 1 points by Coreupt (294) 2 years ago

Technology is the impetus for the dawning of the new era. For the first time all of humanity can instantaneously communicate on a global scale. We can control our birth rate with the use of safe effective birth control. We have the resources to feed and house the world’s population. Most all human suffering is manmade or worsened by greed and lack of empathy. Technology has also given us the ability choose our destiny. We can continue the current trajectory: depletion of resources, growing inequalities and war. Or, we can choose a new way.

The path to enlightenment, equality, and sustenance is attainable with a united movement. Part of that movement is time bank. Time bank is a network of humanity. Organized on line. Completely transparent. All inclusive. Hour in. Hour out. That’s it. No person’s hour is more or less valuable than another.

A worldwide time bank can be started now. With enough participation it can catalyze the transition from the current corrupt monetary system to a society where money is irrelevant and each person is valued. Fear and greed will paralyze this movement. Hope and imagination can propel it.

Time is the Substance from which I am made. – Jorge Luis Borges

[-] 1 points by Esposito (173) 2 years ago

Democracy is not an economic system.

"If you do not do the job you were hired to perform because of incompetency or laziness, you should be fired." Then you would have all these out of work people protesting in the street yelling how nothing is fair...eh-hem.

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

As mentioned in the comment below, in a democratic economy you have the added benefit of making sure the general direction of the economy is also accountable to the public.

So managers of companies will be required to constantly improve the efficiency of companies by automating tasks in order to produce with less labor. Automation will become a priority.

There will be no waiters in a democratic economy. People only become waiters out of desperation.

Wasting a human life, the most sophisticated piece of machinery in the universe, on moving a plate of food from one end of the room to another is a criminal waste of the most valuable resource we have.

Waiters along with 55% of all the jobs we do will be immediately automated with existing technology.

This will create a constant stream of newly unemployed workers. So another thing we will hold the overall economy accountable for is full employment. We will invest whatever amount is necessary to maintain full employment.

This will keep the economy growing, more efficient and more dynamic than the current economy.

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

Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a management system where power rests with everyone equally. It can be used to run a government, an economy, a single business, a family, or it can be used to decide what to cook for dinner.

Capitalism is a management system too. But the difference is that power in capitalism is allocated unequally. So democracy, in essence, is the exact opposite of capitalism.

For the most part, the democratic economy would run largely as it does now. Consumers will decide what is produced based on how they spend their money. Entrepreneurs with new ideas will go to banks for funding. Companies will be individually run and managed. Companies must generate enough revenue to cover expenses in order to stay in business. Managers will be responsible for hiring, firing and company performance. And companies will still compete for your business.

However, there will be three primary differences that make it democratic: 1) Income will be allocated equally based on effort so that everyone is guaranteed a very high income. 2) Investment will no longer come from personal savings. 3) A group of managers will be elected to ensure that the general direction of the economy is also accountable to the public.

[-] 1 points by Esposito (173) 2 years ago

That's not democracy is called communism. If that's what you want be brave enough to admit it. Don't try to convolute the issue by making up your own meanings of various terms. Sorry Democracy is a sociopolitical model. Has nothing to do with economics no matter whatever you say about 'People Power".

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

Capitalism is as much a political system as democracy. Economics is short for the term political economy.

Politics and economics are inseparable. Democracy simply means the economy is in the control of everyone equally, as opposed to capitalism where control is concentrated in the hands of a few.

Democracy doesn't say anything about how to allocate resources efficiently or grow the economy. That will be done largely by the mechanisms we already have in place such as money and markets as explained in the comment above.

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 is 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 Dost (315) 2 years ago

Dude, please. Setting the goal is one thing. Getting there is the real issue. Have you not noticed that reason and logic do not persuade people who are emotional and generally very uninformed. Real democracy is problematic as Plato rightly pointed out. His argument being that the common person is ruled by emotion or passion and hence democracy brings with it the demagogue or demagogic elements who manipulate the people for their own purpose. Hence, you get what we have today. The only way around this is through leadership, organization and education. If you actually do EVERYTHING according to democracy, you will fail. This is because, especially in America, education and brainwashing has dumbed down the population so much that they are totally uninformed and out of touch with their actual interests. This might sound presumptuous of me to say and even condescending but when you get out in the real world and have conversations and dialogues with the vast majority of people, you come to realize the problem. We do need leaders, facilitators and navigators who can help to build a movement and guide us. The opportunities for this arrive during times of severe crisis when there is an opening because of suffering on the part of a larger part of the population. We should be talking about building Organization which is the real challenge and work. I may agree with much of what you say but it makes no difference if you don't have the organization, leadership, and plan to work to build a Mass Movement into perhaps a legitimate Third Party or some other revolutionary process. The immediate goal is to build a Movement by building an organization. We need to first develop our program and analysis and education people as to the Plutocratic nature of our govt. its dysfunction and corruption and the way out. That is the priority. But good comment. Nice to see some real thinkers on this site and I do mean that most respectfully.

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

I'll also add that the tea party was built on a cause, not a policy idea.

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

"Real democracy is problematic as Plato rightly pointed out...Hence, you get what we have today"

Plato was an authoritarian that advocated dictatorships.

One thing that we have learned after a couple thousands years of society is that democracies work and dictatorships do not.

Poverty, inequality, the lack of jobs and half the workforce doing pointless jobs is because of capitalism, not democracy.

I agree this movement needs organization and a direction. But you need an inspirational goal to get people on board. People die for justice, fairness, and equality. People don't die for lobbying reform.

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

"reason and logic do not persuade people"

I agree. And it is frustrating.

But people don't stay up at night worrying about lobbying or any other wonk political minutia. People care about their bottom line. They stay up at night worrying about their finances.

The primary force that drives all politics is summed up in the famous saying, "It is the economy, stupid." Because everyone's quality of life is directly determined by their finances, not lobbying. A good percentage don't even know what lobbying is.

When you ask people whether they want to triple their income and cut their mortgage in half and a guaranteed job, few people say no, even the irrational ones.

[-] 1 points by JohnnySuburban (88) 2 years ago

Am I allowed to create an iPhone app and sell it for $1 to 50 million people in your new idea of Society?

Do I get to keep the profits or does the Govt get the $50 mil and I only get a couple hundred grand??

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

You absolutely can develop an app and sell it for $1 to 50 million people.

And you will also have roughly the same chance at earning $50 million: 0%.

But the benefit of a democratic system over a capitalist system is that you are guaranteed an income of $230k as a programmer.

If you are an entrepreneur, launching a biz will work very similarly. You will pitch your ideas to banks and if one thinks it is viable, they will provide you with the funding. You will be guaranteed an income while you build the business just like every other worker.

[-] 1 points by JohnnySuburban (88) 2 years ago

So here's how your system worked:

  • I put in the effort to create something 50 million people wanted
  • I generated $50 million which was given to Govt
  • Govt then gave me $230k
  • And the rest of that money was given to other people who also make $230k

To create this innovative app, if it takes me time/effort and I may or may not succeed, why risk it if I can reap the SAME reward just working at Mickey'Ds?

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

The $50 million will be part of the money you need to run your business. But whatever revenue you generate above expenses will be part of the total economic system's pool of income that is paid out to all workers.

There is no risk, you are guaranteed an income for building the app. And that $230k income is likely 3 times more than what you would make as a programmer in today's system.

But if you would rather work at McDs than making apps, you have the freedom to do that so long as they have positions open. Most likely they won't because it is a waste of human talent to put them in a fast food restaurant when most those tasks can be automated.

[-] 1 points by JohnnySuburban (88) 2 years ago

So, in your system, I'm guaranteed an income regardless if my app fails to get any buyers?

Great!

I will simply sit at home and try to design iphone apps all day long...or at least, that's what I'll tell the Govt when they deliver my $230k

see, I just beat your system...

your move!

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

You might want to read the post before you hypothetically checkmate me on a message board.

If you have an idea for a new business, you will pitch it to banks just like entrepreneurs do now. If it is a viable idea, banks will invest in it just like they do now.

If you cannot eventually generate enough revenues to cover your expenses, your business will be closed and you will stop being paid just like how entrepreneurship works now.

But unlike in capitalism, where the system is not responsible to society, democracy is responsible to society. So the system is responsible for providing full employment. You can only achieve full employment by constantly launching new businesses.

And to make sure there is a constant stream of unemployed people to work at the new businesses that are growing our economy, managers at existing companies will have a mandate to automate as much as possible.

This system will create a more dynamic economy than a capitalist economy because we are deliberately making it more dynamic.

[-] 1 points by Esposito (173) 2 years ago

Do you realize how foolish you sound substituting communism with democracy? Please for your own sake. I'm not trying to be a jerk to you. Look it up for yourself.

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

As I explained in other responses to your comments, 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 is 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 JohnnySuburban (88) 2 years ago

friend...let me try again...

I do NOT need any bank to invest in my development of an iPhone app...all I need is my ingenuity and my intellect. No capital is needed. The costs to develop an app are minimal

So, in your system, can I claim to be an "iPhone Developer" and get paid $250k...even though nobody wants to buy the apps I develop?

How long can I continue to develop useless unwanted apps in your system?

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

In order to get paid as an app developer, if you do not get bank funding for your own business, you have to get hired by a company that makes apps.

If you can't get an app job or bank funding, you could still launch an app business. But the income you earn will not be guaranteed. It will come directly from whatever revenue you manage to generate.

Once the business showed success, you could perhaps get funding then. But you would not be able to collect any more income than whatever income the job you are doing pays.

[-] 1 points by Esposito (173) 2 years ago

No you get nothing because it's not fair for you to get anything. Be happy you got to create the iPhone app.

[-] 1 points by JohnnySuburban (88) 2 years ago

;) thanks!

[-] 1 points by Uguysarenuts (270) 2 years ago

BO bla bla, just absolute rubbish.

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

Do you have any intellectual arguments or is it all just baby talk?

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Proposing replacing an economic system with a form of government is like proposing that we replace our high schools with card counting. One is an education system, the other is a system for cheating at blackjack. They're two different things!

I've pointed this out to you once before, but if only 24% of eligible voters aged 18-29 bother to vote, then any hypothetical system of distributing wealth based on voting is going to screw young people, since they won't bother to participate.

And paying people based on effort, not accomplishment, is a formula for economic stagnation.

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

"And paying people based on effort, not accomplishment, is a formula for economic stagnation"

You are paid based on accomplishment.

As a worker, you are hired to perform some job. If you accomplish the work you are hired to do, you should get paid top dollar for it.

If you do not accomplish the job you were hired to do because of incompetency or laziness, you will be fired.

If people do not buy the good or service you are working on, it will stop being produced and you will stop being paid. You will then be forced to find a new job working on something people are buying.

That is the only rational, fair system of compensation.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Plenty of people think that the only rational, fair system of compensation is performance-based pay. Where you get paid for producing results, not simply showing up and punching a clock.

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

Count me in as one of those people.

If you simply show up and punch a clock, you are not going to get paid.

You only get paid for performing your job. If you don't produce results, you get fired.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

That isn't what "performance-based compensation" means. It means that if I make twice as many sales as you do then I get paid twice as much.

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

We have decades of research on what motivates people. The best way to compensate workers is to pay them well and to pay them a flat salary so that the issue of money is off the table and they can just focus on doing great work.

If you are a slacker and refuse to work as hard as everyone else, you would be fired just like you would today.

But what all the research says, to get workers to take pride in their work and give their best effort, is the job should give them autonomy which treats them like responsible adults, an opportunity to master the tasks they are performing and a transcendent purpose to work towards.

Trying to manipulate people with monetary rewards actually hurts performance in the majority of work we do.

This is backed by studies done in many different fields including research done by the Federal Reserve.

The overwhelming majority of people already get paid this way. Most get paid a flat salary in today's system with little opportunity for advancement within your job. Nearly every union job, for example, tops out in pay after 4 years.

And this is also how doctors are paid at the Mayo Clinic, one of the best hospitals in the world. Not paying for individual performance is part of their philosophy.

View this quick TED Talk on compensation incentives which provides the evidence that the compensation model based on equality will not only work, it will work better than our current system:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrkrvAUbU9Y

Plus there are a ton of ways to effectively motivate people other than monetary rewards. Google the emerging field of gamification which is applying game mechanics (such as completing set tasks for points to level up and acquire medals and outscore the competition and reach the top of the leaderboard) to all real world activities like work, exercising, dieting, learning, etc.

It makes otherwise boring tasks fun. Advocates believe gamification will transform society and will be a part of everything we do. They think game designers will eventually be in charge of developing sophisticated systems that will turn everything we do in our lives into a fun and engaging experience.

Belts in karate or rank and medals in the military are crude examples of gamification.

View this video for gamification's potential: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9NzFCfZMBkU

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

Most of the jobs we do (and eventually nearly every job we do) are cognitive, problem-solving, right-brain type work. The best way to compensate those jobs is with a flat pay as explained in the comment below this one.

For the few jobs that are not right-brain oriented, we should automate. They are ideally suited for automation. With a deliberate effort, we can automate 55% of all the jobs we currently do in this economy with existing automation technology.

Commission based sales jobs will be one of the first jobs we automate. We don't need for people to do that type of work.

You need to properly describe your good or service and that information can then be disseminated and made available very easily without the need for sales people or any other people. Even the actual sales transaction can be automated.

Not all menial, right-brain jobs that are directly related to production can be automated immediately. But that doesn't mean those jobs cannot have "performance-based" pay in the way you use that term. Management can say you need to assemble X amount of widgets or handle X amount of transactions in order to get full pay.

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

Young people will take a far greater interest in voting when their income is directly affected by it.

But everyone will have a right to equality. So if a change in the compensation system violates someone's right to an equal income for equal effort, they can sue based on a rights violation and have it overturned.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Young people are already affected by the outcomes of elections, and they don't vote now. You're fantasizing about utopia.

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

This isn't utopia. It is based on real world numbers. It is based on how the economy operates currently, not how it might be.

Young people are not in any way affected today like they would be on a vote that determines their pay.

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

"Proposing replacing an economic system with a form of government"

Capitalism is as much a political system as democracy. Economics is short for the term political economy.

Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a system where power rests with everyone equally. It can be used to run a government, an economy, a single business, a family or it can be used in deciding what to cook for dinner.

[-] 1 points by Esposito (173) 2 years ago

This is what's coming out of our school system. Now this is very, very frightening. Democracy as an economic system. Yikes. America has no future.

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

Yes, unfortunately for you people are no longer capable of being completely brainwashed with the idea that capitalism is the only viable system. Hopefully America in its current form has a short future.

[-] 1 points by Esposito (173) 2 years ago

I guess Forrest was right.

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

You shouldn't get your education from movies. Try textbooks instead. After you have become more informed, return with meaningful questions.

[-] 1 points by Esposito (173) 2 years ago

Well, I don't know about those textbooks that say "Democracy is an economic model."

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

I don't know if democracy can be called an economic model.

For the most part, a democratic economy would run largely as it does now. Consumers will decide what is produced based on how they spend their money. Entrepreneurs with new ideas will go to banks for funding. Companies will be individually run and managed. Companies must generate enough revenue to cover expenses in order to stay in business. Managers will be responsible for hiring, firing and company performance. And companies will still compete for your business.

The difference is that power, control and income in capitalism is allocated unequally. In democracy, it is allocated equally.

[-] 1 points by Esposito (173) 2 years ago

In communism it's allocated equally. And determines how much a company need for operating expenses? Someone outside the company? How could they possibly know what to effectively do especially if we have someone from the government. The spend $800 on a hammer and $16 dollars for a muffin. Not even the biggest corps do that.

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

Goods and services are delivered using the market. So consumers dictate what they are willing to spend on a product and the company must remain profitable.

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

No drive. No goals. No aspirations. That is what I see there, just reading the list. Capitalism is not the problem. Generations of Americans allowing unchecked greed is to blame. The greed of politicians, bankers, and corporations. Uncheked capitalism cannot work.

http://sanityscribe.wordpress.com/

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

There is no check on greed. Everyone is trying to make as much money as they can in capitalism. How do you check greed? Propose a maximum income? If you did that, investment would plummet, you would destroy the economy.

The vast, overwhelming majority will never get a fair deal in capitalism.

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

Please spend a couple minutes here for possible starting blocks to get back to the checks and balances that are supposed to be in play.

http://sanityscribe.wordpress.com/

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

Capitalism doesn't work and never has worked.

It has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

I don't understand how your "true capitalism" with term limits and whatever else will have any impact on those problems.

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

Those things exist not because capitalism. But because Generations have largely ignored to hold public servants accountable. It has enabled the buying of our poiliticinas. Thus creating the man to hide behind the corporate structure. True capitailism(just a euphamism) as conceived by the founders holds one accountable for misdeeds done in the name of greed. If we eliminate greed from politics, our servants will then be beholden to do the job they are supposed to do.

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

Tell me specifically how you will hold someone accountable for greed and how that will specifically eliminate poverty, inequality and the need to do pointless jobs.

[-] 1 points by ComplexMissy (291) 2 years ago

What if we just get rid of the monetary system altogether? Explanation below: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PIMy0QBSQWo

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

We need money to ration goods and services and for compensation to get enough people to work.

[-] 1 points by ComplexMissy (291) 2 years ago

That's what we need now, in the current system, but what if that will change in the future? Maybe a resource-based economy is something to work towards? And there would be goals, aspirations and drive. We'd be motivated by our need for survival. We'd be motivated to research and innovate because of our innate curiousity and creativity. We'd be motivated to not only survive but to thrive and create a world where everyone will be respected and taken care of. Please watch this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PNRVRbpJMP0

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

That is possible in the future, but not within our lifetimes.

[-] 1 points by ComplexMissy (291) 2 years ago

I understand that point, but in our lifetime we need to do SOMETHING to work towards a better future. So we need to figure out what we might be working towards so we have an ultimate goal in mind and can then choose our steps wisely from there. Whether we see that goal come to fruition is another story.

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

What I propose is exactly the same as what Jacque does except with money and without requiring people to live in simple domes.

[-] 1 points by laffingrass (362) from Normal, IL 2 years ago

You are going to be labeled socialist, and this movement will never get off the ground. We need EVERYBODY, these tactics will alienate the movement from the right.

We ARE the right, and the left, and everything in between.

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

Do you want to improve society or win a popularity contest?

Everyone left of libertarianism is labeled a socialist in this country.

[-] 1 points by WhyIsTheCouchAlwaysWet (316) from Lexington, KY 2 years ago

You know this may not be what you want to hear, but laffingrass is being realistic. Regardless of the moral or ethical considerations of that, a goal on that magnitude is completely unattainable, let alone unsupported by the majority of Americans.

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

Are you really sleeping in the streets to just to get whatever little crumb you can get or are you sleeping in the streets because you want to change the country, maybe the world?

[-] 1 points by WhyIsTheCouchAlwaysWet (316) from Lexington, KY 2 years ago

Look, even considered under the absolutely best light, this is the equivalent to trying to fly before you can crawl. It's idealistic and unrealistic. And further more, in some respects, this is a popularity contest in that it is a populist movement said to represent 99% of the country. You aren't going to be able to sell that to 5% of the country, let along 99.

I'm a full-time single parent, so no street sleeping for me, though I'm on the block with a sign during daylight. Crumbs? That isn't how this works. We take baby steps and prove ourselves, not jump center stage and announce "Hey, guess what?!? Everything's going to change because we said so!"

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

When it is worth it you should stand center stage. It will significantly improve the lives of 97% of the population. If it gains momentum with baby steps, the rest will come around.

You don't aim low and settle high.

[-] 1 points by WhyIsTheCouchAlwaysWet (316) from Lexington, KY 2 years ago

That's nice... but it just isn't going to happen, good intentions or not.

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

Your quest to get 99% to agree on anything is never going to happen.

[-] 1 points by WhyIsTheCouchAlwaysWet (316) from Lexington, KY 2 years ago

Everyone agreeing is unlikely, but I think we can get closer to 99% rather than 50% on a few issues. Further more, if we can actually get one thing done this movement will expand exponentially and we can begin to hash out some of the really complex issues like some of the thing you're talking about.

But until we do that 'one thing' to cement our legitimacy with the American public, we're a fringe group and trying to rally behind extremist views will only lead alienating them, making this all for nothing.

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

What is the issue that people are all going to agree on? Lobbying reform?

People outside of a few political wonks could care less about that or any of the other issues listed in some of the demands I've read here.

People don't stay up at night worrying about lobbying. People care about their bottom line. They stay up at night worrying about their finances.

The primary force that drives all politics is summed up in the famous saying, "It is the economy, stupid." Because everyone's quality of life is determined by their finances, not lobbying.

When you ask people whether they want to triple their income and cut their mortgage in half and a guaranteed job or whether they want lobbying reform, the majority of people are not going to choose lobbying reform!!

[-] 1 points by WhyIsTheCouchAlwaysWet (316) from Lexington, KY 2 years ago

I say it is lobbying reform and here's why people do care. Lobbying IS determining people's finances and quality of life. The amount of corporate influence over our government is what led us to this ridiculous situation in the first place, i.e. the situation in which our politicians not only stood by and let risky investments tank our entire economy, but then provided interest free bailout loans with tax payer money to soften the blow on these lending giants while the common Americans suffered through record unemployment, foreclosure rates and inflation.

This is the root of the issue! Campaign finance reform doesn't solve these issues, but it's the first step and the only step that we can get the majority of Americans to agree on.

"When you ask people whether they want to triple their income and cut their mortgage in half..."

Most will say no. Socialism's been pretty demonized in this country.

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

Socialism is demonized by crazy people on the right. Most are not against socialism. I forget the exact number but the percentage of people who actually want socialism is actually in the double digits.

But most don't know what socialism is and most want to see their income triple. If real, significant socialist policies (not we'll reduce your tax bill by $300 for the year) were talked about in the mainstream, I guarantee people would all of a sudden be coming out of the woodwork as socialists.

[-] 1 points by WhyIsTheCouchAlwaysWet (316) from Lexington, KY 2 years ago

I can't argue with that. I think we differ on methodology and current goals.

Whether I'm for or against socialism is irrelevant, however I'll say that I think it needs to be discussed without bias. I think this protest's greatest accomplishment so far has been the explosion in political discourse it has generated. However, the protest has not done much tangible yet. If we can change that and really do at least one tangible thing, people will really start to pay attention and even better, people will really start to participate. In my mind, that's the only possible road to what you're talking about.

Here's a rule I've learned about human behavior: People will not change until the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of changing. Don't get me wrong, people are hurting, but it isn't a wake-up-tomorrow-and-reinvent-society kind of pain yet, or even close to it.

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

I don't think this country is short on political discourse. The media is filled with it.

We are short on pursuing rational solutions.

The only thing being reinvented is the number on your paycheck. Work would otherwise continue exactly as it does today for 99.99% of the population.

[-] 1 points by laffingrass (362) from Normal, IL 2 years ago

You aren't going to change anything if you remain divided. You will play into the media's hand, and you will become leftist/socialist Obama supporters.

I don't want to see this movement die because of political agendas of the few. We have to be 99%, not 44.5%.

As for the popularity contest assertion: what the fuck do you think elections are?

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

It is impossible not to be divided.

So the OWS is not a movement that is protesting inequality? It is a movement that is trying to achieve 99% popularity?

You should stand up for what is right instead, not what you think is most popular.

[-] 1 points by laffingrass (362) from Normal, IL 2 years ago

OWS should be a movement protesting wealth's influence in government, the root cause of all of this. Everyone can sympathize with that.

Falling into the "divided" trap will kill this beautiful movement. Adapt or die, we've been trying the same things for years and they aren't working.

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

The root cause of what, the financial collapse? Capitalism caused that, not wealth influencing government.

This is what capitalism does. You gamble money in order to make as much money as possible. Along the way you will have booms and spectacular busts.

Eliminating political donations is not going to solve a single problem in society.

You will still have 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

[-] 1 points by laffingrass (362) from Normal, IL 2 years ago

Who propped up politicians into office? The banks and corporations.

Who allowed the banks to make the loans? Government. Who gives the corporations breaks? Government

United we stand, divided we fall.

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

You think business would make less loans without government? That is just not true. The opposite is.

You are going to ban loans? That won't help anything.

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

You just don't get it. The ONLY system that allows for freedom and holds people accountable for abusing others freedoms is the country we are supposed to be. No other system allows for individual freedoms. The problem is our system has been hi-jacked, and has been cemented in since 1913.

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

You are never going to get real freedom in capitalism.

Freedom is the ability to act without coercion or restraint. People who have little or no money have little or no freedom to act or do anything.

The ability of a kid in the ghetto to earn money is vastly different than the ability of a kid in the Trump family to earn money. A ghetto kid has little chance at freedom. A trump kid is given unlimited freedom at birth.

A poor girl in a capitalist country who cannot afford tuition has the same lack of freedom to an education as a girl in a Taliban ruled Afghanistan village where education for girls is banned.

Your income dictates how much freedom you have. And in capitalism, most of the income and freedom goes into the hands of a very, very small minority. 97% of all workers have a below average income.

Only democracy gives you true freedom, because it guarantees you enough income so that lack of income is not a restraint on your life.

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

Please read and re-read the constitution(the original), it will tell you where, and how the checks and balances are SUPPOSED to work. While your at it take a look at some federalists papers, they identify why and how the checks and balances would work. Problem is we have not had Capitalism in any of our lifetimes. It is and has been crony capitailsm, or corporatism.

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

The constitution does not say what economic system we should have.

It does say the government is responsible for providing the general welfare. And there is no better way than in the democracy I outline above where everyone is guaranteed a very high paying job.

Capitalism will never work that well.

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

True the Constitution does not identify Capitalism. It does however express that freedom starts with the individual, accepting that responsibilty, and it moves up. Currently it is moving top-down. That is Tyranny. What you put forth is just another form of it.

As I have said before, Capitalism is not perfect(what is).

There is no other system in the history of man that allows for more opportunity for more people than what this country was supposed to be.

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

It is your responsibility to work. Democracy just guarantees you are well paid in return since your freedom is dictated by the income you have.

Democracy is the opposite of tyranny. It is a system where power rests with everyone equally.

Capitalism is not just not perfect. It doesn't work at all and never will.

This country is supposed to be a democracy, where power rests with everyone equally, where everyone is provided for, where everyone has equal freedom. It is capitalism that is getting in the way of that because capitalism is a system of inequality.

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

NO, we are not and never have been the democracy you speak of. We are a Democratic Republic, bound by the Constitution. In a Democracy 51% rule 49%. They 49% are not represented.

In a Republic, each disrtict holds democratic elections for their representatives. The representatives then go to congress. Where they democratically vote on legislation. each district gets a voice representing the local citizen to the Federal Government. Power does rest with everyone equally by voting for your local representatives. The problem however(once again), is that the politicians enacted laws that removed checks and balances within the system. This has allowed our servants to be purchased by entities that do not have our best interests at heart. Thus the greed in Washington going unchecked, has led to us not being able to have the laws to prevent the abuse.

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

Our country was founded on the enlightenment ideals of freedom and equality which is the modern interpretation of a liberal democracy.

Democracy is also not mob rule or rule of the majority. It is equal power.

It means every citizen gets an equal freedom to act, speak, and think; equal treatment under the law; equal votes; and equal income for equal effort.

Two wolves and a sheep cannot vote to eat the sheep for dinner because that would violate the sheep's equal right to treatment under the law. The law protects the rights of the minority to the same degree as the majority.

Madison wanted an oligarchy and was scared that democracy might take his wealth and power. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWvIWxh2yRs&feature=player_detailpage#t=511s

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

"Our country was founded on the enlightenment ideals of freedom and equality" Agreed

" which is the modern interpretation of a liberal democracy." I disagree that mandating someones salary, and job is neither liberal or democratic.

"Two wolves and a sheep cannot vote to eat the sheep for dinner because that would violate the sheep's equal right to treatment under the law. The law protects the rights of the minority to the same degree as the majority." Our Republic, as set up and protected by the Constitution, also protects this. However our servants(some say leaders..I don't like that term for them) have allowed themselves to have been bought by the wolves.

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

Since income dictates how much freedom you have, the only way for you to achieve a liberal democracy of equality and freedom is by allocating income equally.

I like the term servants over leaders as well.

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

The only reason income has anything to do with it now, is because we allowed our servants to change the rules.

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

I don't understand. Are you saying we don't need income?

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

No. I am saying the only reason money has more power politicaly, is because our servants have allowed it, and by default so have generations of Americans.

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

Money has power because everything you want to do in your life costs money. Your income determines what kind of lifestyle you can have.

Political donations have very little effect on your life.

The income you get from your job determines how much freedom you have, not the amount of political donations that are going on.

[-] 1 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 2 years ago

When 3 guys buy 1/4 billion of attack ads, that does affect our freedom. It is a way to buy our political system, which is supposed to protect us.

http://dailyhurricane.com/2010/07/karl-roves-grassroots-organization-funded-by-billionaires.html

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

How is my freedom to do the things I want limited by that ad?

Increasing my income by 350% will increase my freedom to live the way I want. I don't know how stopping an ad will do anything close to that.

[-] 1 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 2 years ago

When they buy the ability to write the laws, that affects all our freedom. The ads tilt the law-making function of the government their way. It particularly limits our ability to protect ourselves from them and their gouging.

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

Give me an example of how the average worker is gouged from their law-making that comes anywhere close to the gouging they receive from getting paid $33k to work instead of $115k or $230k.

[-] 1 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 2 years ago

Please rephrase your question, as it doesn't make sense to me as it stands.

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

Freedom is the ability to act without coercion or restraint. People who have little or no money have little or no freedom to act or do anything.

It is income that dictates the amount of freedom you have.

So how specifically is limiting a political ad going to increase my freedom anywhere near the amount my freedom would be increased by increasing my income by 350%?

[-] 1 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 2 years ago

For most people, incomes have stagnated because productivity increases have not resulted in increases in income.

Modest income increases are more in the realm of probability than huge ones. My income did increase by more than 350% over a period of years. It made life better for me in many ways, but it did not give me unfettered freedom.

I consider my life to be better when it is better for those around me, so that the current economic conditions affect me even if I'm not personally sharing them. I suspect that freedom means something very different to me that it does to you.

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

Increasing income increases freedom. It does not give you unfettered freedom. Unfettered freedom is impossible and undesirable. I don't want my neighbor to have the freedom to test bombs in his backyard.

Freedom is the ability to act without coercion or restraint. You can't redefine words. How is your definition different? I suspect you mean something other than freedom.

[-] 1 points by SanityScribe (452) 2 years ago

Your argument is not holding water you said this... "Freedom is the ability to act without coercion or restraint. People who have little or no money have little or no freedom to act or do anything."

Then you said this... "Increasing income increases freedom. It does not give you unfettered freedom. Unfettered freedom is impossible and undesirable."

So which is it? I have come to the conclusion that you do not understand freedom, capitalism, democracy or what a republic is. Perhaps you think freedom=possessions. I assure you, that is not the case.. You seem to think that freedom is dictated by a government. When in reality our sysytem is buit to enable freedoms from the bottom up..not top down. But it has been perverted. I would suggest you spend some time looking at our founding fathers words. Not what our schools have pounded into your head your whole life.

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

Freedom does not mean possessions.

Freedom is the ability to act without coercion or restraint. People who have little or no money have little or no freedom to act or do anything.

A poor girl in a capitalist country who cannot afford tuition has the same lack of freedom to an education as a girl in a Taliban ruled Afghanistan village where education for girls is banned.

People with little income do not have the freedom to get healthcare, get an education, live in a nice home in a nice neighborhood, go on vacation, send their kids to a good school, etc.

Your income dictates how much freedom you have. And in capitalism, most of the income and freedom goes into the hands of a very, very small minority.

Only democracy gives you true freedom, because it guarantees you enough income so that lack of income is not a restraint on your life.

As I mentioned, the modern understanding of a liberal democracy is equality and freedom.

That is exactly what this proposal offers.

Everyone has a birth right to the equal freedom to act - to pursue their happiness however they define it - without coercion or restraint so long as they do not reasonably violate that same right in others.

But we only have equal freedom if we have equal income.

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

continued...

And so long as we have democratic control over how much our jobs pay, we should have democratic control over what jobs we do.

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.

(read this comment on how the 55% is calculated: http://occupywallst.org/forum/are-you-rebels-or-revolutionaries-choose-revolutio/#comment-79246)

Wasting a human life, the most sophisticated piece of machinery in the universe, on moving a plate of food from one end of the room to another is a criminal waste of the most valuable resource we have.

If we made a deliberate effort to automate every job possible, we could cut the work week in half. And the only work people would have to do is 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.

And when we have democratic control of the economy, we no longer have to charge interest because it costs absolutely nothing to digitally increase your bank account when you get a loan.

Eliminating interest will cut your monthly mortgage in half.

When every citizen has access to a job with those incomes and those benefits as a right, there would be no social problems.

Full democracy is the only way to create a society that works well for everyone, that provides the highest standard of living for all, that maximizes every one’s ability to flourish and that eliminates the need to force people to waste their lives toiling in involuntary jobs.

[-] 0 points by europen (5) 2 years ago

send more messages to Europe, our media diminishes the importance of your

[-] 0 points by europen (5) 2 years ago

send more messages to Europe, our media diminishes the importance of your

[-] 0 points by europen (5) 2 years ago

send more messages to Europe, our media diminishes the importance of your

[-] 0 points by andrewpatrick46 (91) from Atlanta, GA 2 years ago

lolololololololol... TROLL

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

force, how, at gun point?

[-] 0 points by AmericanArtist (53) from New York, NY 2 years ago

Wiki Occupy Wall Street

http://www.wikioccupywallst.org

United We Stand ! Let's Build it Together ! Yes we are Us . . .

[-] 0 points by educ8or (1) 2 years ago

Let's start buying homes without the banks. https://www.wepay.com/donate/84579

[-] 0 points by kpg55 (1) 2 years ago

I get paid $115,000 a year because: I worked my ass off in college to get the necessary skills About 1% of the population can do my job correctly (DB design for CRM systems) The shame of it is that a lot of what you are saying has some merit. But this kind of simplistic dribble dilutes some trully meaningfull dialog.

[-] 0 points by Magoo (0) 2 years ago

Mr. Madison, what you've just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.

[-] 0 points by TarigAnter (33) from Khartoum, Khartoum 2 years ago

From my long experience in dealing with governments in more than a dozen of them I assure you that if you slash more than half of government officials or the so-called public dis-service and throw them to the streets you will definitely get better, effective and efficient administrations.

I am sure they are the source of corruption and corporate greed support. I have never seen in my long life any government department or an office functioning properly. They are excesses, idles, and the antithesis of innovation, ethics and productivity.

People must have regular and uninterrupted access to monitor what are going on in any government office, low or high, including the judiciary, the police, the security, and the military.

When you deal personally with a successful private business you feel your power as a valued customer even if it was unethical business. But when I personally deal with any government office I feel their arrogance and wickedness; I wish I could spit on their faces.

The public service anywhere in the world is ten times it’s optimal size, and they are very good in employing the failures and the dishonest for life.

To Occupy Wall Street and bring social, political, and economic justice people must axe useless officials first.

[-] 0 points by Deadbeat (11) from Austin, TX 2 years ago

What the author is describing is economic parity. This will help achieve democracy for sure. But the problem is MONEY and trying to maintain a monetary system when in fact a monetary system is unmaintainable. The best thing to do is eliminate money altogether. Money is just another commodity and it interferes with human exchange. Money also DECOUPLES human interaction and also restricts our access to vital resources. Eliminating money will also eliminate institution that hoards money like banks, insurance companies, hedge funds, the IRS and the like. Eliminating money means that human will have more time and access to the fruits of society.

[-] 0 points by LovebyGod (0) 2 years ago

BUSH AND THE REPUBLICAN PARTY are most evil and wicked humanbring on earth. go to War and let our 4,000 of our young man got killed for no WMDs. SHIP BILLION of CASH$$$ to IRQL and let us NO FOODS. they created this big mess for every one and they let the rest of our 99% suffered. they should all go to hell and don't pretend to be a Christian anymore~~~... they just love the rish, wont help the poor. SHOULD let them all go to hell. Hail to all OWS HEROS!!!

[-] 0 points by dixon (0) 2 years ago

Occupy social media! thefacebookunion.com

[-] 0 points by dixon (0) 2 years ago

Occupy social media! thefacebookunion.com

[-] 0 points by wweddingMadeintheUSA (135) 2 years ago

Boycott imported goods Buy Made in the USA

[-] 0 points by republicofolancho (35) 2 years ago

A Republic is not perfect. Combined with free enterprise and respect for the cycles of nature, a more compatible society can be created. We are doing it. So can you.


https://www.facebook.com/pages/Republic-of-Olancho/149833091753264


www.republicofolancho.com


[-] 0 points by precipice (220) 2 years ago

Occupy Resistance Network http://www.occupyr.com/

[-] 0 points by madeinusa (393) 2 years ago

It's Time to GET MONEY OUT of politics:

http://www.getmoneyout.com/

[-] 0 points by uncommonsense1st (5) 2 years ago

I like your ideas although some of them are impossible. I have been thinking we need a whole radically new form of communism, american made and totally new and different. many of your ideas are similar. The communist threat did more good for our country here in america than it ever did for russia or china. I wouldn't want to live in either one. But if we don't rise up now and change our land as our forefathers said we must, we will be a sorry ass people living as slaves....GIVE ME MY FREEDOM!!!!!

[-] 0 points by cupcake (0) 2 years ago

Every person in America needs to stop buying goods (other than food). Stop the cash flow to banks and corporations, then they will take notice.

[-] 0 points by cupcake (0) 2 years ago

Every person in America needs to stop buying goods (other than food). Stop the cash flow to banks and corporations, then they will take notice.

[-] 0 points by OurTimes2011 (377) from Arlington, VA 2 years ago

Suggestions:

20% of the country's wealth has been destroyed and not a single person has been convicted, much less indicted.

REVIEW ALL COMMISSION AND INCOME DATA FOR 2000 to 2008 ON WALL STREET. RECAPTURE/CLAWBACK ALL COMMISSION INCOME.

Wall Street has iron control over the country’s economic policies and that both parties are wholly owned subsidiaries.

ELIMINATE THIS.

24 million people cannot find a full time job, that 50 million cannot afford to see a doctor when they are sick, that 47 million need the government’s help to feed themselves.

IMMEDIATE FEDERAL INFRASTRUCTURE REPAIR JOBS PROGRAM. HEALTH CARE, NOT HEALTH INSURANCE, FOR ALL.

15 million families owe more on their home than it is worth.

ELIMINATE - CANCEL ALL PREDATORY LOANS. WRITE NEW NONPREDATORY LOANS.

MOVE MONEY FROM BANKS TO CREDIT UNIONS.

[-] 0 points by RonPaulFlixdotcom (73) from Kingsville, TX 2 years ago

http://youtu.be/-kB-nWvq2ys

Sounds like you enjoy a bad dream!

[-] 0 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

I'm sorry, but what you are alluding to is just an economic mindfuck.

You can't arbitrarily raise everyone's salary and expect that each dollar will maintain it's current value. All you would do is change the marginal value curve and reset the value of a dollar. The net effect would be that $115,000 becomes equivalent of minimum wage. You'd hyper inflate the cost of everything from basic to luxury items.

What you describe is socialism - and while a great concept in theory - it ignores the basic human ego and how to motivate people. In small communities, communal socialism is the perfect organizing concept. In a broad society it stifles creativity.

Additionally, our founding fathers were petrified of pure, direct democracy. It is too reactionary and can become totalitarian very easily.

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

"our founding fathers were petrified of pure, direct democracy"

Democracy is not mob rule or rule of the majority. It is equal power. Democracy is a Greek word for people power. It is a management system where power rests with everyone equally.

Equal power means, among other things, that you get equal treatment under the law. So two wolves and a sheep cannot vote to eat the sheep for dinner because that would violate the sheep's equal right to treatment under the law. The law protects the rights of the minority to the same degree as the majority.

However, our country was founded on the enlightenment ideals of freedom and equality which is the modern interpretation of a liberal democracy. And those democratic principles of freedom and equality can be applied to more than just the law.

It can be applied to government and the economy. And that was what scared some of the Founders because an equal say in government and equal treatment in the economy would undermine their privileged positions within government and the economy.

The Founders were comprised of rich, white, slave owners. Of course 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

[-] 1 points by eric1 (152) from Corona, CA 2 years ago

Democracy IS rule of the majority. Everyone participates, but the majority does rule in the end. What you want is socialism clearly, but some group ultimately has to make a decision, even in a democracy, and majority rule is how that it is accomplished.

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

That is not correct.

A democratic economic system simply means we have equal economic power. Incomes - your source of economic power - are equal. You get equal pay for equal work.

You do not need a majority of anything when you spend your money. You spend your money any way you want regardless of how many people agree with you.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

"That is not correct"

Yes it is.

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

You think you need to obtain a majority vote before you can spend your money?

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

I do not need a majority vote before I spend my money. I also, do not need a majority vote when I fix someones wage. I do not need a majority vote to determine how much I will work for. People are paid based on how much profit they return to me. Some jobs return less profit and require few skills so are paid less. Some jobs return more profit and require greater skills and demand a higher wage. I alone determine how much I pay and each individual has the right to determine how much they will work for. Your scheme is totally ludicrous and unworkable.

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

The current system is totally ludicrous and unworkable.

We should have a market in goods and services. We should not have a market in people.

It is inhumane to treat people like commodities, like heads of cattle or bushels of wheat, where your entire standard of living and means of survival depends on your ability to sell yourself in an open market.

That market system of labor has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology.

Just in case you missed that, 97% of all workers make a below average income.

That is not because everyone in society is a loser.

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

And this system is designed to work 100% of the time for all the people born into one of the families of those lucky few, regardless of how hard-working, responsible or effective they are.

It is an incredibly unfair system. It simply does not work.

We should replace capitalism and its market system for people with democracy because we are civilized and humane and all humans deserve the dignity of being treated equally.

Income should be allocated democratically. If you and I both work 40 hours, in jobs of similar difficulty, successfully accomplishing the jobs we are hired to do, we deserve the same pay. If you allocated income based on effort, everyone would be wealthy.

[-] 1 points by rabidmoderate (13) from Lawrence, KS 2 years ago

People are not treated like commodities, because people can effect their own economic value through achievement. I am the master of my labor capital. I can make myself more or less valuable through training or education or by watching TV in the evenings because I don't care. There are of course a lot of factors that could contribute to why I don't care, but that is an entirely different discussion.

What you offer me is not democracy at all. It is state run capitalism, where my labor capital is valued the same as your labor capital. Your government arbitrarily decides that all labor is worth the same regardless of what it is capable of producing. This is oppression.

Equal power does not mean equal money. By equating money with power you show the simple-mindedness and ignorance of your position. Far from producing a fair and equal society, your system will turn humans into autonomous members of a collective hive. If we all make equal money, they we should just do away with money all together, and let the government tell us what we want and need, because the results will be the same.

I am obviously much more educated than you, and I don't want you and your "averaging of humanity" to take me and dump me into a bureaucratic system where I have to tolerate the objectification of human value that is proposed by you and your necessarily mindless followers. What is worse, I will have to watch my kids be treated like cogs in a wheel of the social oppression that you call democracy. You are the one advocating slavery. I would have NO CHOICE to improve my economic value under your system, and so I would be a slave.

If that makes me an elitist, so be it.

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

Your ability to earn a living depends on your ability to sell your labor in a market. And the price you get for your labor is determined by supply and demand. So, yes, you are treated like a commodity.

97% of workers make a below average income. That is not because they all choose to be below average workers. It is because you have little control over your outcome. A lot of it depends on luck, heritage and genetics.

I do not want state run capitalism. The government will not run a single company. They are all independently run and managed by entrepreneurs who got financing from banks.

This system will likely INCREASE YOUR INCOME BY 350%. It is not oppressive. It gives you more income. And since your income dictates your freedom, it gives you more freedom.

All labor is not treated the same. If you work a difficult job, you would get paid twice the amount.

The government does not determine incomes. Income is determined by total GDP and how that income is allocated is determined democratically instead of treating people like commodities.

All your economic power comes from your income, so increasing your income increases your economic power.

If you are fighting for a system that will pay you less money, you are doing it wrong.

[-] 1 points by rabidmoderate (13) from Lawrence, KS 2 years ago

I know a lot about statistics and have taught courses in statistics. The fact that 97% of people make less than average income is a mute point that is meant to inspire fear. It is part of the politics of hatred that are necessary to convince people to give up their rights.

If the government tells businesses how to price production, then they are also setting the price. If I make 115,000 a year at a job that is really only worth 35,000 a year, then a single apple will end up costing $50.00. No one would buy apples. The apple industry would go out of business.

Your obsessive focus on the morality labor as capital is funny, because all you propose is overvaluing the commodity. It is still a commodity under your system, just a ridiculously over-valued one, which will have rippling effects in the economy. My kids like apples, and I don't want orchards to go untended because it costs $45.00 to produce a single apple.

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

"Gullible, brainwashed fool, FOX news"

Only a fool would advocate a system that pays them less money and thinks that less money gives them more freedom.

And you got that absurd idea from right-wing ideology which is what fox news is trying to brainwash people with.

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

"The government would determine what gets produced, how much, where, when and why."

Consumers determine all that by how they spend their money. It has nothing to do with government.

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

"So do you steal money from say a tech company so that apples don't cost $50.00 each?"

The cost of a product depends on its own expenses. It has nothing to do with the expenses of other companies. You don't know how business works.

Some employees will get pay raises. Some will get pay decreases. Overall, the total amount paid to employees is the same. SO PRICES WILL REMAIN THE SAME!

For example, if a company has just 2 workers and one was paid $200k and the other was paid $30k, their total costs would be $230k.

If they decided to reallocate income so that they were both paid $115k each, their costs would still remain $230k. Since their costs didn't change, their prices won't change.

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

The fact that 97% make less than average shows how incredibly unequal and how incredibly unfair our system is.

You may enjoy making a low income and want to fight for a world where everyone except a privileged few make a low income. But the vast majority of people do not.

And you may want to teach yourself statistics before you teach others. Since we are not increasing the total income that is getting paid out and all we are doing is reallocating existing income, on average, costs will remain the same. And since costs will remain the same, prices will also remain the same.

The government doesn't price production. The cost of production depends on the amount of labor you use. In order to increase efficiency you must decrease labor.

[-] 0 points by rabidmoderate (13) from Lawrence, KS 2 years ago

Gullible, brainwashed fool, FOX news? Your assumptions about my news sources are as uninformed as your ideas on how the economy works. You should start your own company and show everyone what idiots they are. Just calling us fools is not likely to garner you support for your ideas. But I guess name calling is what people without any actual experience running a business have to do in order to feel powerful and smart.

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

"Why would I want 115,000 at the cost of my liberty?"

You are a brainwashed fool. Your income determines how much freedom you have. Lack of money is a restraint on your freedom to do the things you want.

Turn off fox news. They are going to take gullible people like you for every last dime you have.

[-] 0 points by rabidmoderate (13) from Lawrence, KS 2 years ago

To Respond to your response on last time: You have contradicted yourself. You say that "on average" everything will remain the same, but the CEO of an apple company may make only 115,000 per year right now. So do you steal money from say a tech company so that apples don't cost $50.00 each? Your solution requires an entire government take-out, so that averaging can occur. The government would determine what gets produced, how much, where, when and why. It is just communism. There is nothing immoral about unequal. I have a good life, a smart phone and enough money to eat out now and then. Why would I want 115,000 at the cost of my liberty?

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

"It is inhumane to treat people like commodities, like heads of cattle or bushels of wheat, where your entire standard of living and means of survival depends on your ability to sell yourself in an open market."

Maybe to you, I sure as hell don't feel that way. It gives you incentive to improve your skills so you can better yourself. Besides, how do you expect the human animal to evolve if its not forced to compete for its daily bread.

"That market system of labor has left 46 million in poverty, 16% underemployed, 1 in every 5 kids in poverty, 25% of all blacks in poverty, 97% of all workers earning a below average income, 52 million without health insurance, and 55% of all workers doing pointless jobs that can be automated with existing technology."

The federal government plays games with those numbers depending on who's running the show. The avg. income number is the wrong number to use. You should use median income. 52 million without health insurance? Where do you get that number.

"Just in case you missed that, 97% of all workers make a below average income."

Sooo what, thats the wrong number to use.

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

Wrong again, how could someone so smart get everything wrong. The system works for the majority of the "hard-working, responsible, effective workers." People who apply themselves get ahead. People who don't flounder.

"And this system is designed to work 100% of the time for all the people born into one of the families of those lucky few, regardless of how hard-working, responsible or effective they are."

Good genes is always a plus but its not always the deciding factor. Hard work can often make up for lack of breeding. Google Andrew Carnegie.

"It is an incredibly unfair system. It simply does not work"

Wrong again. It does work. Do some people take unfair advantage and game the system in their favor? Yes. That's the part we need to fix.

"We should replace capitalism and its market system for people with democracy because we are civilized and humane and all humans deserve the dignity of being treated equally."

I think capitalism works better than anything else that's been tried. Can our system, as it works right now be improved? Yes. We need to weed out all the corruption and gaming of the system. Humans deserve equal treatment under the law not equal outcomes. Each person should succeed or fail based on their own efforts.

"Income should be allocated democratically. If you and I both work 40 hours, in jobs of similar difficulty, successfully accomplishing the jobs we are hired to do, we deserve the same pay. If you allocated income based on effort, everyone would be wealthy."

Total BS. You deserve exactly what your worth no more, no less. Effort does not count. Results are what count. Should Payton Manning be paid the same as Tyrod Taylor (backup quarterback for the Ravens)? Hell no. Is life fair? Hell no. You do the best you can with what you got and treat your fellow humans with respect and you should be all right. You can't ask for anymore than that.

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

"The avg. income number is the wrong number to use. You should use median income...Google Andrew Carnegie...Is life fair? Hell no."

Spoken like one of the true useful idiots.

"I think capitalism works better than anything else that's been tried."

Even soviet russia, with its horrific, totalitarian, brutal political system, managed to have significant economic growth with its socialism. It went from a 3rd world country to a 2nd world country. Then after 10 years of capitalism it went right back into the 3rd world. After 20 years of capitalism, it has had no growth or progress since 1989.

So capitalism, in the only experiment of its kind, failed to even do better than a Stalin dictatorship.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JroogX7zBek

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

He is hopped up on Horatio Alger juice, and until life mows him down, he will continue to believe he is the holder of the golden ticket, and the rest of us are not as intelligent as him. Capitalists are not stupid. They know how to harness unadulterated stupidity. The over inflated ego sustained by stupidity.

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

Yes, capitalists have conned all the gullible people like orionstarman.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

You call what they have in russia capitalism? What they have in the rest of the EU, capitalism? You don't know the first thing about free market capitalism. Why am I wasting my time. This is why the OWM will fail every left wing loony lib comes out of the wood work with their new version of communism and tries to tell us how this time it will be different. I'll take anarchy over communism any day.

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

You want to live in a dog-eat-dog, winner take all society. That is what unregulated, "pure" capitalism is. It is a world ruled by the wealthy. I do not.

I want a society that works well for everyone. What you advocate is barbaric. We have two different worldviews.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

You live in a dream world. We don't live in a capitalist free market system. Haven't for a long long time. We have crony capitalism. The fraud and gaming of the system must be purged. To big to fail must be ended. Once that's done capitalism works just fine. I'll take that over soviet russia seven days to sunday. Stalin killed 50 million of his own people and you think that's alright? Yeah right, your going to convince a lot of people with that.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

"Democracy" does not mean "we have equal economic power". You're trying really hard to redefine the word "democracy".

If everybody can spend their money in any way that they want under your system, then what's to stop wealth from concentrating yet again? If Company A becomes more popular with consumers than Company B, and everybody spends their money at Company A, then where is Company B supposed to get the money to pay its employees the government-mandated salary?

[-] 1 points by RyKi24 (12) 2 years ago

It works, in his eyes, because government will come in, take that extra wealth that has been earned through hard work and creativity from Company A, and hand it over to company B. Much like what Obama has done with bailing out corporations. See: Socialism In his "Democracy", people will earn the same no matter what they do, with only two salary differentials, those who have the hard jobs and the easy jobs. You will no longer will have to work hard, for you have the government safety net, which is great for the bums who are useless to society and can hop from job to job, without worry of their skill set or how valuable they are of a worker. Great Idea bro... what a pleasant life that would be. I'll drop out of school now

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

You are clueless. The vast majority of workers, including you, make a below average income. So under today's system, NOBODY gets paid for working hard.

In a democratic system, that would end. Everyone who works hard gets paid enough to live a wealthy lifestyle. And if you do not work hard you will get fired, just like you would today.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Apparently under his system, people would have to be paid to go to school, since unemployed people just get re-assigned to new jobs. Getting constantly fired would be a great gig. Cruise through life like Wally from Dilbert.

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

You do not get re-assigned. Companies are largely individually run and managed. You would have to find a new job. Nobody tells you where to work. And since constantly getting fired makes it more unlikely that someone would want to hire you and since you are not getting paid while you are unemployed, it is not a way to "cruise through life."

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

When I suggested that people who are having problems finding jobs today in the real world should re-train for other industries that are in higher demand, you said:

Some people will benefit from learning a different skill. But when you are unemployed, broke or have a family to take of, going to school is not an option.

So I'm really confused now about your system. Your system appears to make things a lot WORSE for people who are struggling. Your system eliminates entry-level jobs, which are the biggest thing that people need when they're trying to reposition their careers into other industries. If going to school is not an option for these people, like you said, then what are they supposed to do? How is this anything but a dystopia for the low-skilled worker in a shrinking industry, rather than a utopia?

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

You don't understand the difference between "constantly getting fired" and people who are unemployed who need to get another job or trained?

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Sure I do. And so how does your utopian vision help people who find themselves working for a failing company in a shrinking industry, through no fault of their own? It seems to actually make things more difficult for them. It makes them more likely to get fired in the first place, since employers have no flexibility with compensation. It makes people more likely to be unemployed for longer, since each hire will be a serious investment for a company, because there will be no such thing as an entry-level job. Your proposal seems to do a lot of harm to the working class, while benefiting those of us lucky enough to have marketable skills and jobs. So how is that an improvement?

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

I don't propose that we just raise the income of the bottom 97%. I also propose that we lower the top 3%. So prices will remain the same.

The increase cost of hiring a new employee will be offset by the decrease in price of the top 3%.

The economy will invest whatever is necessary to achieve full employment. If existing companies are not hiring, new ones will be launched that will.

[-] 1 points by RyKi24 (12) 2 years ago

Yea and Carter the construction worker, working in the hot sun all day and risking injury, gets paid the same amount as Betty flipping burgers at the burger shack. Carter must really like the thrill of the outdoors and heavy machinery! Or did he get "assigned" there? Hope his company is adequate! Otherwise its back to school!

[-] 1 points by pasteurize (19) 2 years ago

If you read the post, it clearly says that construction workers would get paid twice the amount burger flippers would get paid.

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

I do not say democracy means equalu economic power. Democracy is Greek for people power. It is not Greek for voting. It means people have equal power.

I advocate what people have been advocating for centuries: apply democracy to the economy.

If Company B does not have enough to pay its employees, it will be shut down.

All of these questions have already been asked by you. And I have answered them over and over and over and over again.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

No you haven't answered my questions sufficiently. How are the employees at Company B supposed to get paid the mandatory rate, if the company is unsuccessful and they don't make any money? You're going to take from Company A to pay Company B?

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

This is why you deserve to give yourself the iserbyte reading comprehension award.

Again, if Company B does not have the revenue to cover its employees, the company will get shut down. So nobody will be getting paid anything from Company B.

[-] 1 points by eric1 (152) from Corona, CA 2 years ago

You keep mixing apples and oranges. Economic systems and systems of GOVERNING are two totally different things. It's rather obvious that you have a problem with any governing authority whatsoever.

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

Capitalism is a way of governing the economy. I propose that we use democracy to govern it instead.

We can argue semantics all you want, but you would be missing the point.

I do not have a problem with governing authority. I advocate democracy, not anarchy.

[-] 1 points by ChrisArnold (68) 2 years ago

I don't understand how us thinking this peace of papper is backed by a shinny metal makes it money, yet the credit can't stand on its own. We don't even use gold as currency(for the most part) So why can't credits of buying power simply be given out as means of comensation for contributing to growth of human kind?

But on a real note, if equality is the deal, and it is, than a free market system will not work.

In free market there are lossers who become poor, there are winners who get bigger and bigger and stomp out the competition, then you have the same pile of shit we have now. So sure, lets keep free market and go through this every 50-150 years.

[-] 1 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

Equality is not the deal - and it can never be enforced.

By our very genetic makeup - we are not born equal. We are born with equal rights to pursue our hopes and dreams.

Trying to ram parity down everyone's throats is never going to work. You're competing with the laws of the very fabric of the universe. Things are not equal. They never will be. You can't stamp it out.

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

"it ignores the basic human ego and how to motivate people"

As a worker, you are hired to perform some job. If you do the work you are hired to do, you should get paid top dollar for your work.

If you do not do the job you were hired to perform because of incompetency or laziness, you will be fired.

If people do not buy the good or service you are working on, it will stop being produced and you will stop being paid. You will then be forced to find a new job working on something people are buying.

That is the only rational, fair system of compensation.

We have decades of research on what motivates people. The best way to compensate workers is to pay them well and to pay them a flat salary so that the issue of money is off the table and they can just focus on doing great work.

In order to get workers to take pride in their work and give their best effort, what all the research says is the job should give them autonomy which treats them like responsible adults, an opportunity to master the tasks they are performing and a transcendent purpose to their work.

Trying to manipulate people with monetary rewards in right-brain, cognitive, problem-solving jobs, which is the majority of the work we do and will soon be the only work we do, actually hurts performance.

This research is backed by studies done in many different fields including research done by the Federal Reserve.

The overwhelming majority of people already get paid this way. Most get paid a flat salary in today's system with little opportunity for advancement within your job. Nearly every union job, for example, tops out in pay after 4 years.

And this is also how doctors are paid at the Mayo Clinic, one of the best hospitals in the world. Not paying for individual performance is part of their philosophy.

View this quick TED Talk on compensation incentives which provides the evidence that the compensation model based on equality will not only work, it will work better than our current system:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrkrvAUbU9Y

[-] 1 points by Bootsw (39) 2 years ago

"Not paying for individual performance is part of their philosophy.",

I want to be paid for my performance.

I suppose if I was in a job I loved then maybe I wouldn't care as much.. but really when it comes down to it, if I do an outstanding job.. I want to get paid like I'm doing an outstanding job.

This whole message that you're sending here is that mega wealth will dissipate. It sounds good if you're not mega wealthy.. but I would hate it if I was mega wealthy and someone came along and just took what I had. What happens when you get your system in place and my stack of sheckles starts dissipating?? or maybe this is a better question: how do the mega piles of money start dissipating to pay for this brave new economy??

You intimated that interest would go away. I'm all for that, but this means that money can no longer make money. Investment bankers would be out of work. So now that I'm fully behind this 'no interest' thing... How would it be put in place?? would we just one day make a law banning interest? Oh credit would be eliminated too.. no more credit cards... I dunno if I could live without my credit card.. Could you expound on this idea for me.. I want to know how I could live without my credit cards:) Or even loans.. Can't get a loan, because nobody would want to loan me anything.. well because they wouldn't make any interest of my loan.. hmm I wouldn't be able to own a house?? Scared of the new system you're proposing, so how do you make it attractive to us credit addicted homeowners??

As far as the OWS goals they are only this: to get financial sector influence out of Washington. This means that all those corporations out there trying to excel in making money can't use our government anymore to do it or to make their place in the market better through influencing legislation.

Boots

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

"if I do an outstanding job.. I want to get paid like I'm doing an outstanding job."

There are few jobs where that compensation model works. Where it does, that is how workers will be paid.

But a surgeon for instance gets paid for doing the surgery correctly, not how well the surgery was done.

You are going to get paid top dollar and you are going to be expected to meet a standard of excellence. And work will be designed, as explained in that video, to provide intrinsic rewards in addition to monetary rewards.

"how do the mega piles of money start dissipating to pay for this brave new economy??"

The economy will work just like it does now. The US economy produces $15 trillion in income per year. That income will be allocated however the compensation plan says it should. The only thing that will change is how much you get paid. If you were making $100 million per year, you are going to have a significant decrease in income.

They will no longer be able to afford 10 homes, but now the people who don't have homes, can begin to live in one of their own.

"Investment bankers would be out of work"

Commercial bankers, who do things like checking accounts and personal loans, will no longer be needed. All that can be automated.

But investment bankers are highly skilled jobs. They determine what companies should be invested in. They will not go away.

"would we just one day make a law banning interest"

You will no longer be able to lend people money for interest since everyone can now get their loans for free.

Credit will largely be an automated process. Banking will be 100% digital. So the computer will know all your expenses and what your income is. If you can afford the loan payments, you will automatically get approved for credit.

However, since the amount of money we are able to loan is limited, the term of your loan will fluctuate based on the demand for loans.

For the consumer this will be seamless. You will just turn on your cell phone (or any other connected device) and you will see what money you have to spend, what your credit limit is and what the term limit was for the amount you wanted to borrow. You don't need a credit card.

Everyone will qualify for a mortgage so long as you have the income to make your monthly payment.

[-] 1 points by Bootsw (39) 2 years ago

There's a lot of ominus dominus happening here without any real details.

"You will no longer be able to lend people money for interest since everyone can now get their loans for free."

Great!! free loans, I love it!!! Term to be decided by a computer. Some severe penalties for not paying on time, but only one problem?? who pays for the administration of the 'free' loan?? am I paying maintainence fees for the printing of the monthly statements for my 'free' loan?? and who, or what is going to have these piles of cash just sitting around in this brave new economy in order to loan me that cash?? Furthermore who is going to be motivated to give out a 'free' loan?? No interest, and free loan sounds good until you figure out nobody works for free. So maybe this is a no interest loan, though you're still paying for maintenance and administration on the loan yes??? oh and late payment to be added to the end of the loan??

I am still not sure about your labor rate model where outstanding work isn't rewarded. I am hoping the premiere surgeon in the nation can do a better job than one just coming out of medical school... and I hope that premiere surgeon gets paid commensurate with his ability to excel at surgery. I am really hoping that the prestige and pay that this premiere surgeon is getting is so attractive to that medical student just out of school that he will aspire to being a premier surgeon. Without this 'incentive' I am afraid that the medical student will just float along doing surgeries and not wanting to do any better because he just won't get paid any better.

Boots

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

You do not pay interest because money is digital and costs nothing to produce. You don't have to borrow someone's money when we can produce any amount we want for free.

Of course there is still a cost in running the computers that manage our banking system. But that cost is on the order of pennies per person.

You can get details here: http://demandthegoodlife.com/plan-credit.asp

Also, medicine does not work the way you describe. Buying cancer treatment is not like buying a car. You don't get the best treatment by paying a premium price.

If a surgeon is not willing to correctly perform the surgery because he doesn't feel he was paid enough, he should be locked up and never allowed to practice medicine again.

[-] 1 points by RyKi24 (12) 2 years ago

Oh so we're just making our own money now? How will that fair in a global market? What will that do to our dollar? You flood the market with money that you have just magically made, it will devalue the American dollar.. Ever buy something straight out of Mexico? It's awesome! I can spend $10 and buy 134 peso's worth of Mexican goods (mmmm tequila)! You devalue our dollar even more than what it is now (due to the government manufacturing of extra money whenever we need it) the Mexicans will be buy flat-screens and xbox's for half their worth. Kudos

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

You cannot print more money than is available. That will cause inflation. Read the link if you are interested.

[-] 0 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Boots, he fundamentally does not understand the concept of performance-based compensation.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

Yeah, but he is fundamentally a nut. A nut who writes long windy posts but still a nut.

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

Tech, you fundamentally do not understand the responses I give to you. Although the amounts will change, all the ways in which people are compensated in this system will still exist in a democratic system.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

All people will be compensated a fixed rate according to their pay scale, regardless of performance. You call that "performance-based compensation". It's an amusing kind of double-speak.

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

Software development is a right-brain activity. That is a job that should get paid a flat salary.

And if it did, you would earn $230k which is several times more than what you get paid now

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

"Several times", eh? You don't work in technology, apparently.

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

"Under the current system, I get paid better"

You are lying. You currently do not make more than $230,000 per year.

It is bizarre that you so vehemently support a system that is ripping you off and that is paying you less than you deserve.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

I get paid better than the average, to be specific.

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

I'm not sure why none of this is getting through.

This would increase your family's pay, not decrease it.

It is a system where everyone is wealthy, including you.

97% make a below average income because the system is not fair, not because you and everyone else are below average workers.

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

orionstarman,

Capitalism is a system that concentrates income. It is not a system that pays fair incomes. The more income you have, the easier it is to acquire even greater income. It is based mostly on luck, genetics and heritage.

After about a century of this, 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 loser.

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 fair way to compensate work is to pay people based on the amount of effort that work required. Effort is simply a measurement of quantity and physical or mental difficulty. If you and I both work hard for 40 hours doing a job of similar difficulty, doing what we were hired to do, and producing something people were buying, we should get paid the same.

When income is determined democratically, and when every worker is guaranteed equal pay for equal effort as a right, there is enough income to go around to make every single worker wealthy. The economy would work well for everyone.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

Your system is totally unfair. People should be paid what there job is worth.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

You're acting like a magician trying to distract me. Or like a politician. "...Don't think about it too much, you'll make more money under this system..." You think that all doctors should be paid the same, yes? You think at all software developers should be paid the "software developer" pay rate. Fixed, regardless of how they compare to their peers. Whatever you're paying becomes the new minimum wage, so no, this system doesn't help me. Under the current system, I get paid better because I perform better.

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

It is sad that you have the ambition to make more money than someone else.

You should have the ambition to do great work, to do the best you can do, to satisfy your customers.

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

orionstarman,

The point is that people are NOT getting compensated fairly for the work they do. In a democratic system, you will. You will likely earn 3.5 times more than what you do now.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

People have ambition to do great work and expect to be compensated for the value of the work they do. If I bust my but and do more/better work than the next guy I expect to be paid better. If not I take my skills and work ethic elsewhere.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

My ambition is to provide for my family. If you're trying to create a government mandate to work for any other goal then you're threatening me and my family.

All of these socialist wealth redistribution plans work in the same way: Your plan doesn't work using only YOUR money. It only works if you can take all of MY money too. You're free to go and set up your own communist collective and call it "democratic" or whatever else you want, using your own resources. Why doesn't anybody do that? Because the people willing to fork over their entire life savings to the collective tend to be people who don't have very much money in the first place. The idea doesn't work unless you can convince some people with money to contribute their "resources" to your Utopian vision. (Or unless you can find the military force to steal it from them.) But why would anybody who has been successful under the current system want to willingly invest in a new system that starts out by giving all of their stuff away to people who have been less successful?

People who have been unsuccessful in the current system want to change the system to accomodate them, rather than changing themselves to accomodate the system. That applies to all of the Utopian ideas for restructuring society that are floating around on this forum, including your idea. Especially including your idea.

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

"I take pride in getting paid better than most"

That is sad.

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

Orionstarman,

If I was in charge, you would like be making 3.5 times more than you are making now.

If you are trying to maintain a system that pays you 75% less than what you should, you are not doing it right.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 2 years ago

No it's not. To you maybe it's sad but I am so glad your not running things.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Sad, no that isn't sad, that's ambition. You would too if you could. If you could, then you would never suggest that you should be paid the same as people who can't.

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

The average income of software programmers is $75k. So $230k is likely several times more than what you make.

[-] 2 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

It hasn't occurred to you that I'm better than average, and so I make more than average? I mean, I was able to figure out how to do advanced formatting on this web site without any documentation or pointers, so I might actually have a knack for this whole web thing.

Of course not! Of course that hasn't occurred to you! Because you think that I should be paid $75k/year no matter how good I am at what I do.

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

Mandating the pay of some jobs is not the same as saying everyone gets a flat salary.

What job do you do? I thought you did sales. Sales can be automated. Nobody should have to do that job at all. But that would be considered a left-brain job, a job that works better by being paid a performance-based pay.

And how did you get to bold a word?

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

I have job skills, that's how.

Mandating the pay of my entire profession, which is software development, not sales, is the same thing as saying that everybody gets the same salary. Or is it not? What IS your idea, exactly?

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

Like I said in another comment, you ask the same question over and over and over and over and over again. And I keep giving you the same reply.

The vast majority of jobs are right-brained. The best way to compensate those jobs is with a flat salary.

The jobs that are left-brain can be paid with performance-based pay in the way that you mean the term. Left-brain jobs are undesirable, can be automated and are rapidly approaching extinction.

This was explained in the TED Talk that I gave you.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Okay but you want to MANDATE that all 'right-brain' jobs, the good ones in your system, pay the same flat rate. Or that all jobs within the same pay scale bracket pay the same flat rate. You'll only allow actual performance-based compensation for crappy jobs. So for my industry, you ARE mandating equal pay for everybody.

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

Yes, you did misunderstand that part. It does not say we will pay everyone the same! It just says if we did what that amount would come out to. The point was to illustrate how unequal our income is.

You should be given an iserbyte award for worst reading comprehension skills.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Okay and so when you said "EQUAL PAY FOR EQUAL EFFORT", you actually meant something other than paying people the same for doing the same job?

And somehow I also misunderstood this part?

...based on the American economy in 2010, that system would pay an income of $230,000 per year for the difficult jobs and $115,000 per year for the rest of the jobs.

You're NOT proposing everybody who has an easy job $115k/year?

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

I never said every worker gets paid a fixed rate according to their scale.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

Sure, no problem, I'll help you bump up your thread.

I must have misunderstood this part:

Our income is allocated so unequally that if we just allocated total income equally to every worker, regardless of what job they did, everyone would get paid $127,000 per year.

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

Your definition of what sucks is not shared by the rest of the population. Nobody would consider getting paid several times more than what they do now as something that sucks.

If you do not care about how much you get paid but only whether you get paid more than someone else, that sounds more like some kind of self esteem issue.

If you refuse to take pride in your work and not do the job you were hired to do or the best that you can do because you think others are not as good as you, despite the fact that you are getting paid far more than what you are getting paid now, you might want to try therapy.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

I take pride in getting paid better than most, to do work that's better than most. Your system would eliminate that motivation.

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

I do not think you should get paid $75k. I think you should get paid $230k. No matter how good you are, you are not making more than that currently.

And just because you figured out what tag this forum allows doesn't mean you should make more than other programmers. That is absurd, just like our current economic system.

[-] 2 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

That's only part of why I get paid better than the average programmer. But under your system, I wouldn't. The poorest-performer in my industry would get paid the same as me, no matter how good I am at what I do. That sucks. Why would society want to restructure itself to avoid mediocrity? Obviously anybody like myself who gets paid more than the average in their field is not going to be happy with this idea, and that's 50% of the population. So you're on shaky ground already if your whole plan is to accomplish this wealth redistribution using "democracy".

[-] 1 points by Danimal98367 (188) from Port Orchard, WA 2 years ago

Watched it. Much to consider:

The main research about $ verse other incentives is from Sam Glucksberg and his 1962 studies (and on). Here is what the speaker ignores as part of the discussion:

The non-money group that was "just establishing the average" did out-perform the money-seeking group on average . . . but the fastest times were all on the money-seeking side. When a money-seeker internally felt they were going too slow to earn the reward, they basically stopped trying and had terrible times - dragging the average WAY down. On the "setting the norm" team, the speed scores had very little variation. There was no pressure and no incentive so they performed at a baseline. So you have bland, cookie-cutter performers who have no incentive on oneside and the best performers on the incentive side.

Research data is fickle stuff. Sometimes the full data doesn't tell the story you want it to.

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

What that study demonstrated, which was the point of the TED Talk, was that money is a good motivator for left-brain, rules based type work.

But for right-brain, problem solving, cognitive work, it is not. For those types of jobs, it is best to pay them a flat salary so they are not thinking about money.

Left-brain work is the kind of work we can automate and will soon be obsolete. All the work we do will be right-brain work.

For the few left-brain type jobs available, you can tie pay directly to output. You can earn up to the $230k (or whatever the cap is) depending on your output.

[-] 0 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

You have a lot of faith in humanity and a corrupt version of fair.

What you advocate is that people work for the same salary. Do your job or your fired. Wonderful -- but what motivates me to perform ABOVE and BEYOND simply occupying my role? Why do I want to spend years of my life learning a trade that will pay me the same as a ditch digger (nothing against ditch diggers)?

That's not fair or rational.

If I create a product or find a market for a good - and I fill this void - why should I not be compensated appropriately for this?

What about homes? Will we simply flatten the cost of a home so that no profit can be made? What if I speculate and buy a house on the lake -- and over time that property becomes more valuable ... should I not be able to make a profit?

While I agree we do have decades of research on motivation - and not one study says making everything equal will motivate people. Yes, I agree that salary and monetary incentives are not the sole motivator - to completely disregard it is folly.

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

"You have a lot of faith in humanity and a corrupt version of fair."

This system does not rely on humanity to do anything more than what they are doing today.

Income is compensation for productive work. So the only fair system is pay people based on the amount of work they do. Your pay should be based on the amount of time you work and the difficulty of your job. If you and I both work hard for 40 hours doing a job of similar difficulty, doing what we were hired to do, and producing something people were buying, we should get paid the same.

That is the only system that is fair.

How is it fair for a kid to be born in a ghetto with nothing and a kid to be born a Trump and have access to everything?

How is it fair for 97% of all workers to earn a below average income?

How is it fair for someone to make 100,000 times more income than another person?

People make millions of dollars based on luck or family heritage. There are millions of people who work just as hard as they do that will never make millions. People don't have a crystal ball to predict what works in the market. There is no secret step-by-step formula that guarantees you business success. It is all luck.

And that is not fair. Casinos should be based on luck. The economy should be based on effort.

"what motivates me to perform ABOVE and BEYOND simply occupying my role?"

More money. More hours and a more difficult job gets you more pay. Also, pride in your work and the enjoyment of what you do.

"Why do I want to spend years of my life learning a trade that will pay me the same as a ditch digger"

Very few people want to be a ditch digger. But if you do, then that should be the job you do. People get paid to go to school, so training is not a loss of income.

"What about homes?"

The price of homes is the same as everything else: the amount of labor it took to produce.

We don't need you to speculate on homes. If someone wants a new home, we will just build them one.

"not one study says making everything equal will motivate people"

You get equal pay for equal effort and that is supported by the decades of research.

[-] 1 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

Who is going to determine what "hard" work is? You? The government? A third party? The wizarding hat?

So, yes, income is the byproduct of labor. But who is to say what labor is more or less intensive or difficult than another? I can't draw to save my life - but a great artist can do so effortlessly. Conversely, I can probably catch a football and crunch mathematical equations with relative ease compared to the artist. Who is to determine what is more valuable to society?

So, in your supremely simplistic view of us doing the same job - I agree. This is why there are things called salary bands. People CURRENTLY get paid equivalently for similar jobs. But sometimes managers can see potential in one employee over another and offers further incentive and promotion. It's the nature of the beast.

Furthermore, half of work is presentation. You don't just sit down and crunch away. You interact, you do work, you have meetings, you brainstorm. These factor into what separates one employee from another. Ignoring that is foolishness.

What is this nonsense about "fair"? Who are you to determine fair? Is it fair that Usain Bolt was born faster than me? Should I be allowed to kneecap him because he has a skill I cannot compete with? It's not fair. It's not fair!

Life isn't fair. Life isn't equal. Life is chance. These are facts. I was born with every genetic advantage in the world. 6'6", strong and fast, was able to play collegiate football, always good with the opposite sex, smart enough to get into and get my graduate degrees from a prestigious university. It's a bit arrogant to toot my horn that much, but it's fact. So, is that fair to be born that way? I had EVERY advantage in the world.

So, you point to these people that get rich by luck -- and there are just as many that lost their bottom dollar doing it. It is luck. So what?! Success is usually highly dependent on luck.

So, you point to people born into money -- their family earned that money and have every right to pass it to their children. Providing for your children is one of the sole reasons for actually doing well. Somehow it's not "fair"?

The economy can never be based on effort. It's impossible. Every move someone makes in the economy is a gamble. Will this new product or service be successful? Will this new company have enough to make it through the year? Will people like the taste of the new rooty-tooty-fresh-and-fruity breakfast?

I agree, Wall Street speculation is a bit of an issue. It is legalized gambling. But it is hardly the root of our problems. It's the rigging of the gambling that is an issue. It's the gamblers who have no business gambling.

Anyhow -- you say that amassing wealth is a sin, yet my motivator is the ability to earn more wealth? Wealth I am not entitled to and am unable to pass along to my children? That's a bit duplicitous, yes?

Moving on -- you're now paying people to go to school? Where is this pool of money coming from? And to assume people wouldn't prefer to be a ditch digger as opposed to the stresses related to being a Director of IT ... when the pay is the same ... you're out of your mind. The ditch digger can go home and forget his job. Did you dig? Yup. Good job. An IT director has to continue to sweat the organization and the status/health of the projects.

As for the homes -- that's just foolishness. You're going to simply buy people homes now? You're advocating 1984, man. We will all drive "car" and we will all live in two bedroom/one bath "home" with 1/2 acre yard - any more and it isn't "fair". Don't you see how out of control this becomes?

Don't you understand that I don't necessarily need to speculate on the house on the beach. By default there are only a select number of homes that can be built as such. By default it will become scarce, and it's a desirable location. So, people will bid up the price naturally. Even without speculation. I might move to a different state and need to sell. The price will naturally increase.

So, given this perfect utopian society -- please sign me up for my beach home on the Hawaiian island of Oahu. I will gladly be a tour guide, short order chef or surf board shop register jockey for my $115k a year. Or maybe these are really difficult job and I should make $225k?

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

"Who is going to determine what "hard" work is?"

The public by voting to approve the compensation plan. The political process will be used to filter proposals and the public will give final approval.

"Who is to determine what is more valuable to society?"

Value of goods and services is determined by consumers. If they don't buy what is being sold, that will stop whatever from getting produced.

"Is it fair that Usain Bolt was born faster than me?"

No it is not fair if you care about running fast just like it isn't fair to get cancer as a kid if you care about being healthy.

You don't have a right to take out his knees. But we shouldn't have an economic system where you suffer because you weren't born with his speed.

What separates us from the wild is that we care about fairness.

It is uncivilized and barbaric not to. We don't have to live like animals in nature on the African Plains where it is survival of the fittest. We can be civilized, humane and treat people equally so that society works well for everyone regardless of genetics or heritage. All humans deserve the dignity of being treated equally and being able to live the good life.

"you say that amassing wealth is a sin"

I never said that. I want everyone to be wealthy. And that is possible if everyone gets paid fairly.

"You're going to simply buy people homes now?"

No. People are going to spend their money however they like. If they want to spend their money on a new home, a new home will be built for them.

"You're advocating 1984, man"

George Orwell, the author of that book, advocated the same thing I advocate here. He wanted to replace capitalism with democracy.

"we will all live in two bedroom/one bath "home" with 1/2 acre yard"

Everyone deserves to live like a king. Everyone should live in their own palace.

If a couple who made the minimum income wanted to spend 1/3rd their income on a home, since mortgages would be interest-free, they wuold be able to buy a home that cost $2.3 million. At $300/sqft, that is about a 7600 square foot home.

We have more than enough rock to build everyone a 15,000 square foot home if that was what people wanted.

Our total developed surburban/urban areas (homes, roads, business) take up less than 3% of the land space in this country. If we allocated our total urban and rural land space equally, it would amount to 1 acre each and still take up less than 8% of the total land space available.

Living in a new 7600 sqft mansion on 1 acre is living pretty large.

Of course, people can spend their money any way they want.

There are only so many waterfront homes we can build. So we could make those homes more expensive to own. Or we can make many of them rentals so that everybody has a chance to live there. We can develop rational, fair solutions.

"I will gladly be a short order chef or surf board shop register jockey"

There will be no waiters or sales clerks or short order cooks in a democratic economy. People only do those jobs out of desperation.

Wasting a human life, the most sophisticated piece of machinery in the universe, on moving a plate of food from one end of the room to another is a criminal waste of the most valuable resource we have.

Waiters along with 55% of all the jobs we do will be immediately automated with existing technology.

This will create a constant stream of newly unemployed workers. So another thing we will hold the overall economy accountable for is full employment. We will invest whatever amount is necessary to maintain full employment.

This will keep the economy growing, more efficient and more dynamic than the current economy.

[-] 0 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

Ya, again -- give me my $225k/yr job on the Hawaiian island of Oahu. I want a beach home that is a modest 4000 sqft. Do it.

I'm sorry, you're just way off base with what you think can be done.

You can't "make everyone wealthy". It's impossible. The whole notion is nonsensical.

You can't celebrate beauty without the lack thereof. You can't celebrate life without death. You can't be wealthy, without the poor. This is the paradox of life. You just change what the poor is -- the dollar will eventually mirror.

As for Usain Bolt - it is completely fair. It's a fact of life, there will always be someone more capable than you in just about every thing you can imagine. This is the nature of life.

You can't regulate fair. You can't define fair.

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

I don't know what else to tell you other than you are misinformed on basic economic concepts and how much $15 trillion in yearly income is.

And the world does not accept your definition of fair. We don't box heavyweights against lightweights.

[-] 1 points by LibertarianCommunist (22) 2 years ago

Pangloss would be proud.

[-] 1 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

I admit I'm confused to the statement LibertarianCommunist.

Does it really coincide with Pangloss' optimism?

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

"You can't arbitrarily raise everyone's salary and expect that each dollar will maintain it's current value."

The incomes stated are not arbitrary numbers. It is what income would be if everyone was paid equally.

All we are doing is reallocating existing income. That doesn't change the overall price of anything. On average, prices will remain the same.

For example, if you and I both ran a company and you were paid $200k and I was paid $30k, our total costs would be $230k.

If we decided to reallocate income so that we were both paid $115k each, our costs will still remain $230k. Since our costs don't change, our prices don't change.

[-] 1 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

Yes, it does. Not understanding this destroys all of your credibility.

You can't simply reallocate wealth and expect prices to remain constant. If everyone had $115k -- what is the dollar worth? You have no basic understanding of economics when you make these statements.

Your assumption is flawed because you assume that prices will remain constant -- the simple fact is that they won't unless the government sets the price for everything and mandates this -- which only would go to stifle creativity.

For instance, let's assume you currently buy widgets for your widgetometer. Currently these widgets cost you twelve cents. This is because the maker has cheap, non-skilled labor and can produce the widget for .05 and ship it to me for .03. In your world these non-skilled labor people just jumped in salary a hundred-fold and the drivers delivering the product have gone up in cost. Now -- that same widget costs exponentially more. How much more is the widgetometer? How much more once you put all the other components in?

You're assumption has you working in an economic vacuum - which works in a laboratory, but not in the real world.

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

"You can't simply reallocate wealth and expect prices to remain constant"

As explained, reallocating existing salaries does not increase overall salaries. Since salaries overall are not increased, costs are not increased. Since costs are not increased, price is not increased.

"In your world these non-skilled labor people just jumped in salary a hundred-fold and the drivers delivering the product have gone up in cost. Now -- that same widget costs exponentially more."

You are leaving out the fact that the factory managers and owners had their income dropped a hundred-fold. So the total amount the factory pays out in salaries remains the same which means their costs remain the same which means the price of the widget remains the same.

[-] 1 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

You're making large assumptions on the distribution of salary in companies.

You're assuming that the top are making enough in profit to redistribute proportionally to all workers to ensure they all make the same amount. It just isn't the case.

Anyhow, deny economic theory all you want. The simple fact is that if everyone makes the same money - prices will increase because the value of the dollar will be readjusted. This is simple fact.

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

"You're making large assumptions on the distribution of salary in companies."

I am not making any assumptions. I know the total income of the economy. It is published by the bea.gov.

I don't know the distribution of incomes of individual companies. Depending on how companies are organized, some prices will go up, some will go down. On average, prices will remain the same.

[-] 1 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

Taking the total income of the economy and sub-dividing it isn't going to change one thing in economic theory. You will still change the nature of what a single dollar means.

If money, scarcity and the laws of economics were as simple as you put forth than I'd agree. It just isn't. You're railing against laws created by people that have put far more of their life's work into the theories.

You will constantly be fighting the laws of supply and demand. You will have to regulate, by law, the price of every good, item and building in existence. This will drive every company from the borders of the country and the US will be left with nothing more than a government and a populous. Trade with the US would simply stop.

What you propose is simple foolishness.

There is no such this as true 100% equality. It is an impossible goal.

There will always be people more physically capable. There will always be people more intellectually capable. Not rewarding this difference is foolish.

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

If you and I have $100k to spend and I spend $10k of it and you spend $90k of it, the value of the dollar does not change if we later decide that I will spend $50k of it and you will spend $50k of it.

"You're railing against laws created by people that have put far more of their life's work into the theories."

250+ years went into the thinking of this system. It is even published in mainstream, peer-reviewed economic journals today.

This is not some random idea by some random guy on the internet.

"You will have to regulate, by law, the price of every good, item and building in existence."

The price of everything will be the total labor hours required to produce it times whatever their hourly pay is.

It will become a more meaningful, rationally-based number. It will no longer be the result of negotiation. It will be the actual measurement of expense. You can no longer pretend you have gained efficiency by reducing price as a result of paying your employees less.

The only way to gain efficiency is to decrease the amount of labor it takes to produce.

As demonstrated in the famous economic calulation debate in the economic journals throughout the 20th century, you do not need markets with fluctuating, negotiated prices in order to get supply to meet demand.

In our current economic system, a rise in price signals an economic shortage and provides the incentive for businesses to produce more of that good or service in shortage.

In a democratic system, you don't need a rising price as a signal that there is a shortage. You can simply see the shortage on the computer that tracks orders. And managers at those companies will be responsible for acting on that information.

There will also be an incentive for the system to react to that shortage just as the market does now.

When consumers stop spending money on product A and spend that money on product B instead, revenue for the producer of Product A will go down, forcing them to lay off workers, and revenue for the producer of Product B will go up which will give them the money to hire those newly unemployed people so that they can meet their increasing demand.

The requirement of the economic system for companies to have enough revenue to cover their expenses and to maintain full employment will force the economic system to submit to consumer demand without floating prices or private profits.

It will keep the system more responsive, efficient and dynamic than our current system.

[-] 1 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

I cannot debate this any further because you blatant refusal to accept the nature of money. If you can show me some sort of proof for me to review, I will gladly review it.

If you can point me to a study that expands on your theory - I'd gladly read it and form more coherent understanding of what you're espousing.

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

Understanding why reallocating existing income does not increase total income is simple math. Understanding how not increasing total income does not increase average prices is something you can get from any introductory textbook on macroeconomics.

Understanding how you do not need a free market in prices in order to clear markets you can get from reading the actual "Economic Calculation Debate" that began with Ludwig Von Mises.

Oskar Lange, in particular, demonstrates how a manager in a non-capitalist system can better replicate the Walrasian auction that occurs in the market in the setting of prices by deliberately moving prices based on simple rules (which could easily be done by a computer today without the need for a manager to set prices).

Paul Cockshott, in particular, writes more recently how the Walrasian mechanism is no longer necessary. You can just make prices whatever the labor hours are (which is something I agree with but would obviously be tested since the management of the economy is technical and should be subject to the scientific method).

[-] 1 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

Macroeconomic texts are riddled with theory that applies to a classroom or laboratory. A closed environment. Simple economic theories don't take into account human behavior.

This is the problem with most theories on the proper economic models to use and the societal model to use. The completely ignore the human psyche and ego ... the most powerful force of all.

[-] 1 points by The2percent (17) from Mt Vernon, GA 2 years ago

You fool. Typical hipster Art history major with no background in basic economics. What he was saying, is that if you were to pay everyone the same amount, the VALUE of that amount would be meaningless. If everyone were paid $115,000, then that value would be a meaningless number.

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

If you had a basic background in economics, you would understand that when costs remain the same, prices remain the same. And when the price of everything today is the same as it would be in a democratic system, $115k in income today would have the same exact value as $115k in income in a democratic system.

[-] 1 points by The2percent (17) from Mt Vernon, GA 2 years ago

I am an economics major. The problem with you assumption is the assumption that costs would remain the same, but they wouldn't. Costs are determined by scarcity, scarcity determined by markets. If everyone had the same income, there would be no incentive to achieve a position that produces marketable gains and reduces inefficiency. i.e. no incentive to be a CEO since it is far more stressful and demanding. Without these positions, firms would cease to work. And costs would soar.

The CEO exists because firms need someone to oversee the firm in order to ensure that people do not lag at their jobs (i.e. slack off). This maximizes efficiency. The only way to make sure that CEO's do not slack off and do a good job at directing their firms is to tie their salary into the success of the companies. Therefore, they must earn more than their workers in order to provide incentive for a more stressful position. This is the only way to maximize efficiency and keep costs low.

Thats just the first problem with your argument. Not only would costs soar, but difficult jobs that benefit collective society would be avoided. Its great to have $115,000 but when there are no doctors or garbage collectors, you still have problems.

Utopia is impossible.

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

The commenter was not talking about market prices. He was talking about inflation. He thought that the incomes were just arbitrary numbers and that we would perhaps have to just print more money to pay everyone more income.

Not everyone is paid the same. You are based on effort. So difficult jobs are paid more than jobs that are not difficult.

And your claim that nobody wants to be the top boss is just as wrong as your claim that nobody would want to be a doctor. They are desirable jobs. They are more desirable than being a garbage man.

And your claim that a CEO's pay must be tied to the financial performance of the company is also wrong. It is not supported by our current research on incentives as well as research done by the FED as explained in this comment above:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/are-you-rebels-or-revolutionaries-choose-revolutio/#comment-85266

[-] 1 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

The commentator did not assume that we would have to print more money to pay the salaries. He was talking about stealth cost of inflation which can be caused by the mass dilution of the dollar and the increase in variable costs.

Anyhow, who is to tell someone what a difficult job is? Is playing football a difficult job? Being an actor? Being an architect? Software engineer? Trauma surgeon?

Where does difficulty begin and simpleness end?

If you think that anyone would want to be a CEO without the perks of more compensation as compared to a guy that changes oil ... you're severely mistaken.

Outside of this - who drives innovation? Who is going to start a company when their income is capped and they can make the same amount of money doing something else with far less stress? Very few individuals, I'll tell you.

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

The dilution of dollars happens from inflation and increasing the supply of money. This program does none of those things. Read through the comments below for a full explanation.

Difficult means hard labor or high skill. Football, engineering, surgery, and some architecture are difficult. Acting is not.

I would never choose to change oil over being the head of a company. I think I'm common in that desire. But there are very CEO positions.

Inventing things comes with its own intrinsic rewards. It is something people will do even if they don't get paid. And inventors and entrepreneurs would rather spend their days getting paid to build their own ideas than someone else's.

[-] 1 points by gtyper (477) from San Antonio, TX 2 years ago

Your understanding of the causes of inflation are rudimentary, and I don't mean that to be condescending. Even theorists on the causes of inflation don't wholeheartedly agree on the plethora of causes. What is generally accepted are about four or five major methods. The two that would impact your model are cost-push and demand-pull. Please research these.

Anyhow, the one thing we definitively established -- you've never been a film actor before. It isn't easy, I'll tell you that much.

I find football much easier than I found acting. Heck, my acting ended up on the cutting room floor. My football prowess brought me to the cowboys (damn bad knee).

Again, it goes down to who defines easy and difficult?

CEO vs Gas Attendant -- you are in the minority when it comes to this. Most people want a modicum of personal success and involvement but given the choice between the stress and frustration of running a company versus being able to come home and visit my family -- salaries being regulated -- I'll choose pumping gas. Of course, I'm a CEO now ... so go figure that I'd actually know how it feels.

If you truly believe that people will simply invent to invent than you are seriously misguided. Most people invent at the paid behest of others. It takes money to research and study. When you remove the ability to reap rewards for inventiveness and creativity, you stifle the desire of people to invest in it. Time, money or otherwise.

Your opinion on people is WAAAAAAAAAAAY out of whack with reality.

[-] 1 points by Danimal98367 (188) from Port Orchard, WA 2 years ago

Exactly. Why invent a better widget when I make the same income pulling a lever on the assembly line of existing widget-makers? Because I'll feel pride or get a ribbon from the company?

And DemandTheGood - visit Denmark. ABC ran a special in 2007 on Denmark because the people are consistently the "happiest" in self-analysis surveys. My wife spent 1.5 years working with Danes and they define "happy" very differently than most people, so it's really a bogus test. Anyway, in the ABC special a nice gentleman talks about how he started off studying to be a doctor but as school got tougher he realised the after tax pay wasn't much better than a garbage man's and with worse hours. He elected to be a garbage man. I know, conveniently exactly what you said wouldn't happen but actually true. Here is the written report, I don't know if video is there:

http://abcnews.go.com/2020/story?id=4086092&page=2

[-] 1 points by The2percent (17) from Mt Vernon, GA 2 years ago

False. What is desirable about being a CEO (an extremely stressful job, requiring 80 hour work weeks and the daily task of making very difficult decisions) if I could make the same amount of money as an artist? Which is easy.

[-] 1 points by The2percent (17) from Mt Vernon, GA 2 years ago

If you think occupying an executive job is desirable without rewards, you clearly have never done so.

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

Read the actual post. CEOs do not work without reward. The $230k is more than what the average CEO gets today.

[-] 0 points by DanYule (14) 2 years ago

by Chana Cox

In Tuesday night’s Dartmouth debate, the Republican candidates were generally agreed on the need to repeal Dodd-Frank. That is all well and good, but banking does need regulation. For 70 years a cluster of New Deal laws, the Glass-Steagall laws, successfully prevented American banks from becoming “too big to fail.” Dodd-Frank should be repealed, and an updated Glass-Steagall should replace it.

In 1933, the Glass-Steagall Act introduced the FDIC which insured bank depositors for up to $10,000 in loss because such insurance was seen to be essential to the maintenance of the banking system. Once the taxpayers were on the hook for bank losses, Glass-Steagall severely restricted the risk to those taxpayers by restricting the scope of banks. The act separated commercial banking, the relatively low risk business of taking deposits and lending money from investment banking, the very high risk business of issuing securities and taking capital positions in businesses and in all manner of other investments. Commercial banks were insured by the federal government, but they were to be stiffly regulated and limited in geographic scope. No American bank would be allowed to do business in more than three states.

In contrast, investments banks were not restricted geographically and they were less regulated but they could not take deposits and their operations were not guaranteed or insured by the Federal Government. Taken together, these Depression-era statutes limited tax payer exposure and risk and limited the size of any one commercial bank. High risk investment banking could and did continue, but it was not federally insured. Furthermore investment banks were often formed as partnerships and the individual partners were personally liable for the firm’s debts.

The 1999 repeal of Glass-Steagall was a disastrous game changer. Commercial banks were allowed and even encouraged to engage in high risk activities – particularly those supported by the politicians in power. The politicians used banks to advance their specific agendas, and the banks used the politicians to insure them against failure. At the same time, as the commercial banks became larger and larger, they became less and less effective as traditional lending institutions. In Oregon, we were better served by First Interstate than we are now being served by its successor Wells Fargo; we were better served by Washington Mutual than we are now being served by Chase; and Bank of America was a strong West Coast bank but it has become a very weak national bank.

After 1999 these newer, larger, freer commercial banks were finding it very profitable to take increasingly risky positions in other markets, like mortgage-backed securities and credit default positions. Under Glass-Steagall such investments would have been illegal for a commercial bank. Instead, commercial banks would have been lending money to local citizens and businesses. They would have been serving their communities as bankers. These riskier investments should be illegal for banks not because they are risky but because it is the taxpayers who are at risk. Our bankers are playing roulette with taxpayer money. If individual bankers win, they are rewarded with multi-million dollar bonuses that get paid out every year; if they lose, the taxpayers foot the bill. Mere months before the repeal of Glass-Steagall, Goldman Sacks, the quintessential investment bank, went public as a corporation and ceased to be a partnership. The partners were no longer liable for the debt – the corporation was. No one was personally liable. Goldman Sacks has now taken the further step and legally turned itself into a bank. Now, even the corporation is not liable – the Federal government and its taxpayers are Goldman Sacks debt. That has proven very expensive for the taxpayers.

In the 1990’s one argument offered for the repeal of Glass-Steagall was that America’s banking system, with its restricted local banks, was inferior to the far more powerful and monopolistic European banks. The banking industry preferred the European model. Ten years ago Deutsche Bank, through its own share position, was in control of much of the German economy. The European banks were far more powerful than the American banks and American bankers wanted that kind of power. In retrospect, we have come to understand that the major European banks have contributed greatly to the current European financial breakdown.

The Glass-Steagall laws successfully regulated the American banking systems. In crisis situations, like the savings and loan crises of the 1980s, the government could step in and save depositors. The problems were manageable. Once banks were allowed to go national and to go into virtually any and all investments, the problems became unmanageable and the moral hazard for both the bankers and co-dependent politicians became catastrophic. Banks were too big to fail and too unregulated to save. Dodd-Frank merely exacerbates those problems.

Bring back Glass-Steagall.

[-] 1 points by IndenturedNation (118) 2 years ago

Dodd-Frank is irrelevant. Republicans want to bring back a modified Glass-Steagal, and will never bring back the complete and whole unmodified Glass-Steagall that worked so well for 70 years, because they are part of the problem and do not want to fix it. If people do not wake up to what the Republicans really want the 1% will own 99% not 40%.

[-] 0 points by MJMorrow (419) 2 years ago

Why should we be revolutionaries? We have some crooked politicians and a financial and industrial system in love with growing foreign markets and eliminating jobs. So we need to use our existing institutions, Wall Street and Corporate America to fix our problems. There needs to be a serious focus on the USA, but do we need to throw the baby out with the bath water? I attended school with the family members of US politicians. They can be stubborn and isolated from common experience, highly influenced by special interests and the seduction of wealth, so they are decidedly human beings, as it turns out, but are they all insane? lol No one is proposing a plan to help the interest of Wall Street, Corporate America and the political elite. I am actually working on such a plan, but I am not finished. I need to ask for input from some former CEOS and a few economists. Now, understand, I am unemployed and I knew big shots, growing up and going for my MBA. Heck, my Dean was a friend of Bill Clinton, but I still need a career! Thhere is no free lunch in life. If we want help, we have to be useful. We need to ensure that our plan will be in the best interests of the people running this country.

You are not pulling off a revolution, so long as the US Military answers to the US Government, understand? LOL I hear people posting that we don't need leaders, because the Government will break us up and crack down on us. I have had some pretty heated debates with the family members of our political leaders and if they were running a stealth totalitarian regime I would be in Guantanimo by now! lol We have nothing to fear from the US Government, so long as we are rational, law abiding and really focused on getting back to work and making the USA great again. The US Government isn't going to mow me down in the street for coming up with a way to create high paying jobs in the USA! =) There is nothing that I am working on that I would not share with the FBI and there is nothing that any of us should be doing that we could not do in front of HLS, that goes without question.

I am working on things to help all of us, so are the vast majority of you, but I am at a crossroads, shall we say, regarding next steps. I would love to hear from the US Government, to meet with CEOs, to create a grand discussion. I would love to sit down with Robert Reich and Peter Navarro. I would love to meet Mayor Bloomberg and so many other people, but I will have to start with the people I can access and work from there. Think locally, act responsibly. We need to work within our great Government institutions, within the rule of law and we need to influence our financial and industrial institutions. Revolutions are for countries where there is no rule of law or sense of right and wrong. US politicians are still prosecuted for wrong doing and crooked businessmen do go to prison. We have a functioning Nation State, but we are ailing and we need to make ourselves better. We don't need to be revolutionaries, but we do need to think of a good plan to get our country back to work. We need a plan that will help the political elite, Wall Street and Main Street. Best Regards, MJ

[-] 0 points by gawdoftruth (3698) from Santa Barbara, CA 2 years ago

more or less agreed. tho capitalism does not exist. the problem is corporate oligarchy. what we want is real democracy.

http://occupywallst.org/forum/dangers-of-unmoderated-forums/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/purple-dialogue/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/its-time-the-occupy-movement-as-a-whole-become-a-m/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/corporate-oligarchy/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/thetruth-socialismcapitalismcommunismmarxism/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/capitalism-versus-corporatism/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/no-war/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/help-me-understand/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/capitalism-a-love-story/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/sociology/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/energy-101-solution/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/ethics/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/break-your-left-right-conditioning/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/nader-kucinich-and-paul/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/5-facts-you-should-know-about-the-wealthiest-one-p/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/i-am-homeless-joe-jp-morgan-chase-accidentally-for/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/can-we-end-the-fed/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/why-end-the-federal-reserve-and-what-do-you-replac/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/where-are-we-and-how-do-we-move-forward/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/things-wall-st-did-were-not-illegal/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/teaching-the-occupation/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/this-forum-needs-structure/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/ows-is-not-your-personal-billboard-for-your-politi/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/systems-theory-primer/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/organize-inform-take-action-effect-change/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/better-website-needed/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/stop-playing-the-devils-games/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/nonviolence-the-only-path/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/ows-not-against-capitalism/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/this-is-not-about-political-stripe-it-is-about-bas/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/national-initiative-for-democracy/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/a-third-political-party-the-movement-of-the-middle/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/300-fema-camps/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/ows-is-a-false-flag-operation/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/why-this-will-not-work/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/paradigm-shift-now/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/a-proposal-for-focus/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/stop-the-bullshit-posts-and-get-organized/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/suggested-goals/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/oct-18-gao/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/naomi-klein-climate-change-fight-is-down-to-the-99/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/only-1-demand-includes-all-others-article-v-of-the/

http://occupywallst.org/forum/occupy-eco-villages/

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

Although I'm all in favor of taking down today's ineffective and inefficient Top 10% Management Group of Business & Government, there's only one way to do it – by fighting bankers as bankers ourselves. Consequently, I have posted a 1-page Summary of the Strategic Legal Policies, Organizational Operating Structures, and Tactical Investment Procedures necessary to do this at:

http://getsatisfaction.com/americanselect/topics/on_strategic_legal_policy_organizational_operational_structures_tactical_investment_procedures

Join

http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/StrategicInternationalSystems/

if you want to support a Presidential Candidate – myself – at AmericansElect.org in support of the above bank-focused platform.