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Forum Post: Rich and Poor

Posted 1 year ago on April 17, 2012, 4:18 p.m. EST by gforz (-43)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Could someone please point me to a society somewhere in history where there were not the "rich" and poor, lords and peasants, pharaohs and slaves, and if there isn't one, can you tell me why the human race, with all of its combined brainpower, could not, in a single instance, figure out a way to equalize the lives of all its people? I, of course, could be wrong, but I can't think of one off the top of my head.

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138 Comments


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[-] 2 points by LeoYo (4798) 1 year ago

Any foraging society and pre-industrial villagers fit that description.

Perhaps you're assuming that the human race, with all of its combined brainpower, has actually ever had a desire to equalize the lives of all its people.

[-] -1 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

I'm not assuming, chief. The leftists on this site advocate for it every day.

[-] 1 points by LeoYo (4798) 1 year ago

So you're equating the whole of the human race to merely being the leftists on this site?

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Well, think about what you said. You're at least implying that historically the human race has NOT had a desire to equalize the lives of its people. Perhaps they did not think it a good idea, and given that you have the combined brain power of millenniums of people versus the modern leftist movement, I'd say the leftists' views are pretty radical and unachievable.

[-] 1 points by LeoYo (4798) 1 year ago

Radical is one thing. Unachievable is another. Thirteen colonies rebelling against an empire upon which the sun didn't set was radical. Perhaps even the most radical thing of its time. Then there was that radical view that they could actually, with all of their disagreements, unite under a federal system and even have a federal bill of rights. Some thought such radical things would be unachievable yet here it is, the dominate power on the planet.

Equality isn't unachievable, it simply hasn't been desired. People in power certainly don't want it as remaining in power requires inequality. People who aren't in power don't care for it as all they're really concerned about is their own well being, not the general well being of others (not that they're actually against the well being of others, they're just not concerned about it). That just leaves the few empathetic individuals who actually give a damn for the plight of the masses despite their collective self-apathy. Until they have the power of politics or the power of the determined masses behind them, they will remain the radical few striving for what seems to be unachievable. No combined brain power of millenniums of people is opposing them, just a lack of concern for a better world. As it's been observed...

"...all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed."

[-] 2 points by Odin (583) 1 year ago

What do you mean by, "...equalize the lives of all its people?" Do you believe that we should tolerate the growing inequities of the past thirty years or so, that have brought us to this point? This is not about rich versus poor...it's about right versus wrong.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

You know, wealth redistribution. Confiscating from one group and giving to another. The utopia of the left. What do you think it means? I'm simply saying it doesn't appear to have been done, regardless of system, so logically, dare I say it mean that it might be impossible to do since no one has found the magic combination yet? Speaking of right and wrong, do you think it is someone else's right to tell you what is right or wrong? For instance, do you believe that evangelical Christians should have the right to legislate abortion being illegal because they feel it is murder? Do you think we should be able to put statues of Jesus up on the town square because a majority believe that it is the good and right thing to do because we are a Christian nation? Who is the arbiter of what is right and wrong? You?

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 1 year ago

There really hasn't been one, at least not in an advanced society (although maybe some primitive tribal societies had something similar, but I'm not sure how good of an example that is). The best we get, a glimmer into the possibility, is the three years anarchists held Catalonia in Spain (during their civil war period in the 1930's).

George Orwell and Ernest Hemingway went to Spain and fought along side its anarchists, as did people throughout the world (the International Brigades). Ultimately, they were the first to taste the fascist war machine of Hitler and Mussolini (who supported Franco in crushing the anarchists). Here's a video on Americans in the Spanish Civil War (very good video):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=em1uvodA1t0

[-] 1 points by Yin7 (44) 1 year ago

Legends have it that Pythagoras had a commune that was completely egalitarian.

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 1 year ago

Could you point me to a society that put a man on the moon? There are worthwhile things that haven't been done, yet.

So, your point is?

[-] 1 points by elf3 (2045) 1 year ago

What did going to the moon really accomplish? Other than type A mentality etc what actual physical benefit did society get from it?

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

Well I didn't own it. And NASA are the folks who have been keeping score, with a vested interest to be sure.

I would say that the advances in communications, navigation (GPS), resource exploration, weather forecasting, tsunami warning, materials technology, medicine, semiconductor technology, algorithm and mathematical modeling, and the fact that tens of thousands of kids majored in math and science, was worth a lot. Then of course there was "Tang", the dehydrated orange drink.

I am sure it paid off better than a war in Iraq, cost fewer innocent lives and those maimed bodies and minds of our young men and women. It will have cost a total of $3 trillion in actual money for it and the one in Afghanistan when the dust settles. The Apollo program cost much less than that.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

My point is, in recorded history, you would think with all the combined brainpower of the greatest minds in history, we would have arrived at such an ideal society if it were possible. It would seem actually easier than landing a man on the moon was. It hasn't been done except in small tribal communities or communes. Maybe we should just accept it, do the best we can, and stop spending all of our energy fighting about it.

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

Methinks you give up too easily. But then I helped put the guys on the moon.

Actually, I don't think anybody had the data necessary to really understand the problem. Then, of course, until recently none of the rich had realized that it was in there interest to manage this. There were several examples of this getting too far out of balance and suddenly the rich lost their heads etc, But at the time, of most of these the rich were just oblivious to the plight of the poor and the consequences they would face at some time.

You say ""do the best we can". So far we have done....exactly nothing.

This is all measured by the gini index. I don't have it in front of me but we are the furthest out of whack with and index of .45 or .48 or something like that. The ideal number for us would be something like .32 or .35. It is relatively easy to design pay scales for a corporation to fit this profile. And boards of directors could implement this as a policy also easily. Government, it goes without saying can follow this model and Congress could mandate it.

Actually a number of countries, northern Europe for example, have implemented policies that just happen to fit. This may be why their happiness indices are the highest in the world. Of course that may also be affected by the universal healthcare they also enjoy. Might just be time to reconsider some of your ideas? There are several that are doing better than we are.

[-] 1 points by penguento (362) 1 year ago

There are indeed societies where everyone is truly equal. They are just very small societies -- communes, kibutzes and the like. They work because everyone is strongly committed to some social ideal, everyone does whatever is necessary and nobody ever games the system-there's an enormous amount of social pressure to conform and play by the rules. The reason they don't scale up is that in a larger society, not everybody is willing to do these things, and a significant percentage of the population games the system by taking from it and not contributing back fully. That's why communism has failed in every country it's been tried in -- the people in power game the system to get rich, the population games the system by not working very hard but still getting a place to I've and something to eat. And that's why it'll never work -- most people aren't committed to some greater social good -- they're committed to personal gain. And some people are willing to work harder and/or smarter than others to get it. People who fantasize about a Utopian society where everybody is economically equal don't seem to understand these things - there's this underlying assumption that hundreds of millions of people will all be willing to selflessly engage in hard work for a common good, and nobody will ever game the system, and it's just not true. It's not even true over the long term for things like communes Kibutzes-they usually disband after a period because people would rather work for their own benefit. Go to Israel sometime -- see how many Kibutzes are still in operation.

[-] 1 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

I'm with you. There are some who believe in more force, less freedom, at the point of a gun if necessary.

[-] 1 points by amanofnoimportance (82) from Orlando, FL 1 year ago

Rich and poor exist because there are some among us who believe they can control and OWN natural resources and plentiful land (not that which is farmland) and become arbiters of something that provides more than they need. Through this ownership they are able to cause those who accept this concept to live or starve by their command.

[-] 1 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 1 year ago

There are a few anarchistic, for lack of a better word 'tribes' (less organized than that) in Africa like The Nuer, who have no such discrepancies of wealth or even organized political hierarchy.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

If they're in Africa, they're another primitive tribe. It seems like the only examples are tribal cultures in which there really is no idea of money or commerce, just trading goods. As the saying goes, money is the root of all evil, I guess.

[-] 1 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 1 year ago

Wealth distribution is taking place on a tremendous scale, only its not being pushed by the left... but the right. Free Trade, globalism has removed our's and Europes manufacturing base and moved them to India and China, where they are now becoming wealthier in the last 20 years than during the last 200 years.

[-] 1 points by DCInsider (54) 1 year ago

This article talks about how some of the 1% are thinking about solving the problem. Or at least opening a dialog on it. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/occupy-the-peter-g-peterson-institute/2012/04/17/gIQA0ZSkOT_blog.html

[-] 1 points by jssk (170) from Naperville, IL 1 year ago

It's not having the rich and the poor, it's the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer that's the problem.

When you were born a low class and have no realistic chance of getting in the high class, this society is doomed to end in violence. Just look at the "lords and peasants, pharaohs and slaves" worlds you mentioned. Back when people traveled on horses and communicated with pigeons, this kind of stagnant social hierarchy might be able to hold on for a few hundred, even a thousand, years. But in this information age, social changes come fast. It could be no more than a couple decades before the best country in the world turns into a turbulent shit hole.

That's why for the long term health of the whole society, social mobility is crucial. And right now the rich are defending their short term interest at a very high price.

[-] 1 points by penguento (362) 1 year ago

Quite the contrary -- the opportunity for social mobility has never been better if you're willing to work hard enough to leverage it. Apple computer was started in a college student's garage, so was Hewlett Packard.You don't need a record company to produce an album -- you can record it in your living room and market it on you own web site, and a lot of bands do it successfully. You don't need a jillion bucks to develop a software product and sell it, you can write a Facebook app and sell it for a billion dollars You can start a business like mine and have no costs for a building and facilities because you can do it virtually over the internet, with very nearly no overhead. There are many, many other opportunities. But you can't just sit there and expect society to hand you a good job and a bunch of other free stuff. There's nobody out there that has the obligation to hand you anything. Go build it yourself -- nobody's stopping you.

[-] 1 points by jssk (170) from Naperville, IL 1 year ago

Just because your life is good doesn't mean other people are sitting there waiting for handouts. How many Steve Jobs are there? And what's the American population?

[-] -2 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

It will become a turbulent shithole only because a certain segment has latched onto the grievance society. You see examples all the time of people from humble beginnings succeeding. It's when an entire group of people believe that they are entitled, that they have new "rights", that they are entitled to the fruits of other people's labor simply because they deem it "fair" and "just", that's when you have violence. Doesn't it seem ironic that the left always threatens mayhem and murder because their idea of "just" and "fair" is not shared by a majority of people, yet they decry police brutality and repression at every turn. If it could achieve the ends they seek, they would turn murderous in a second. They would become the very thing they say they despise. I can tell you something, when the poor or "low class" as you call them, do not learn lessons to be learned from their ancestors lives, when they drop out of school, deal drugs, have babies when they're teenagers and keep having more, yeah, they're probably going to stay poor. I know, I have two college aged daughters and a son in 8th grade in a public school. I see it every day. I've coached a lot of my kids teams and they've had poor kids on them. I've been fairly hard on them because I tell them what I expect, that they're not going to make a hundred excuses for their actions, nor are their parents. I expect them to show up, be on time, give me their full attention and effort. I don't spend a lot of time babysitting and coddling their behavior they sometimes bring in from the streets. They can be a hoodlum on their own time., if it's on mine they're going to run until I run them off or they quit behaving that way. I want these kids to succeed, I root for them. I give them rides to practice or home if necessary. I want them to realize they CAN control what THEY do, not what everyone else does. Like complaining about referees. They can't and never will control what that referee does, but they can learn and control how they react to it. They can learn that they can start out by choosing good friends to hang with. They can learn to be involved in activities that have structure and support, like sports teams, choir, youth church groups etc. And it doesn't cost a lot. They can choose to pay attention in class. Doesn't cost a dime. They can do their homework, and take advantage of tutoring their teachers offer for those struggling. Most of all, they can learn to take responsibility for their actions. This is what we're missing now. Where it got lost, I don't know. But you look around today and every parent has an excuse for why little Johnny got in trouble, or why he failed a test. That if the adults won't listen to them, maybe they'll just have to use violence. The kids learn it from the adults. And they're certainly going to be learning it from you.

[-] 1 points by jssk (170) from Naperville, IL 1 year ago

Come on, we both know our problem is not the drug dealers and pregnant teens. For every one of your high school drop out examples I can see you a college grad making low wage and raise you a law abiding citizen scrambling to keep their home. It's not about those individual examples. We are talking about the big picture. The collective environment of this society. In this country rewards no longer proportionally reflect your effort and talent. The rich and powerful "tweak" the system to their favor. And they don't need to pay any price. We keep talking about a level playground, it's far from level now, it always tilts toward the "high class". And one of the main purposes of a central government is to help level it some. But it's not. If you are so much against taking the fruits of other people's labor, how do you feel your kids going to a public school? I'm sure there are other parents that paid more, or less, property tax than you. Are you not taking their fruit of labor? Just like the public schools, many other functions of the government are to provide a basic service to everybody regardless their resource so they can all have a fair chance in life. It's not entitlement.

And it just amazes me that some people actually believe that the vast inequality in this country is caused by people doing drugs and such. No, even without any criminals and reckless people, our country is still one of the most divided in the developed world.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

The amount of property taxes paid by individuals is a free choice made by individuals according to the value of the home in which they want to live. They could pay the same thing I do and live in the same type of house instead of their mansion. We already DO provide basic services to everybody regardless of their resources. The question, as always, is how much is enough. How much more do we want to pour into it. 99 weeks of unemployment is not enough, they want more, unlimited if possible. Being poor is caused mostly by two things 1) lack of an education and 2) lack of a job. If you choose to sell drugs, you're probably not interested in an education and you're probably eventually going to jail. If you are of the erroneous belief that your 18 year old boyfriend loves you and is going to stay with you for the rest of your life so you decide to drop a couple of kids on the ground, you're probably not going to be taking advantage of the educational opportunities available to you, and since you don't have an education you will probably get minimum wage work, and hence will be poor. These things are all related. The rich didn't make you sell drugs or fuck your boyfriend. They don't make people sign mortgages they can't read or pay for. They don't have any say so whatsoever in the choices a college grad makes in his choice of major or what plans he has made prior to graduation to affectuate getting a job.

[-] 2 points by jssk (170) from Naperville, IL 1 year ago

Nobody asked for unlimited unemployment benefits. Who said that?

Look, things like lack of education, lack of a job, etc. are the mainly cause of hardships, no doubt. But these are not the root cause. For some people it is by choice. For others, it's not. Even if it's by choice, don't you think a child's environment growing up plays a role too? Are you really gonna believe kids from rich neighborhoods are just truly better people that the ghetto kids? Or maybe you would think like a normal person that some people were born or grew up in a different environment and the chances of them making right choices, having good values are lower than others?

So there should be another item on your list: where you were born. And it is often the cause of the first two.

Don't argue saying look there are people from bad neighborhoods or poor families making good choices and there are people from nice upbringings who did bad things. I know, there are always those people and you can always work against your odds.

That's not what we are talking about here. We are talking about the whole society overall. The odds for success for people that try the same things but with different social stature. The lower down the social ladder, the more the odds are against you, the harder you need to work to get the same results, that's just simple truth.

And now our problem is not just the odds are lower, it's so much lower that it's hurting the makeup of the society. You may live in a nice neighborhood where everyone's happy. But it doesn't mean people else where are too. And it certainly doesn't mean their unhappiness was all caused by their own reckless choices in life.

[-] 1 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

"It's when an entire group of people believe that they are entitled, that they have new "rights", that they are entitled to the fruits of other people's labor simply because they deem it "fair" and "just", that's when you have violence."

You're right, why do the RICH feel entitled to pay less taxes than everyone else?

They already use all of our labor to make their companies successful, use our skills to perform tasks that they cannot do alone, use our muscles to give them the sales volume that keeps them rich, and provide the public face of their business. So apparently its "fair" to take more of OUR money and spend it on luxury cars and mansions. I totally see your logic... :/

[-] -1 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Xenu, you're LYING again. The rich don't pay less taxes than everyone else. That sounds like the dumbshit in another thread that claimed Obama paid more taxes than Romney. I don't know why lying is an addiction to the left. Go ahead, argue tax RATES. If you make money but get money back from the government, what kind of RATE is that, sweetie? The rich pay an agreed upon wage or salary to rent the labor or skills of the worker. They pay higher wages to the workers who keep the sales volume higher because they are more valuable to the company. They do not TAKE anything, you are LYING.......AGAIN. You are implying that they are stealing your money. If so, they could be put in jail for it if you have proof, which of course, you don't. What they spend their money on is none of your business. Would you like me to be involved in your personal purchasing decisions and determine what is good for you to have? I thought not. You of course will come up with some empathetic, sympathetic, boo-fucking-hoo emotional gobbledygook to justify your discriminatory ideas. You don't see the rich as equal citizens with equal rights, but simply as a source of funds, a reservoir to be drained.

[-] 1 points by jssk (170) from Naperville, IL 1 year ago

Here is why: Investment returns are taxed at 15% rate. But labor income is taxed at up to 35%. Who do you think gets most of their income from investment? A working class relying on salary or a rich person with a lot of wealth?

I know, many argue investment return shouldn't be taxed at all because their company already paid corporate tax on their earnings. So 15% is already extra tax that they pay compared to ordinary people.

This is flat-out wrong. (But this never gets clarified because the rich and powerful needs to take advantage from this confusion.) Because corporate tax is a tax on the activity of a corporation, which is a cooperation between capital and labor. (When you put some money and workers together you make profits, this is the essence of the Capitalism, right?) So the tax is carried by both Labor and Capital. In other words, if the corporate tax disappears, in a free market, the extra profit will both go to increase in workers' salary and to owners' returns. The nature of capitalism determines that every product of an enterprise is attributed to two parties: the worker and the investor, not just one of them.

That's why the rich complaining about double taxation is dishonest and suspect, just as labeling themselves as "job creators" in the same sense. But obviously, most of the time only one side is more prominent and powerful, therefore they can create these subtle confusions without being exposed.

Now, back to the tax rate, yes, true, people making very little money pay a very low, even zero sometimes, tax rate and people with higher income pay a higher rate. But if you make even more, then you end up paying less again. Not to mention all the various tricks (http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-04-17/how-to-pay-no-taxes-10-strategies-used-by-the-rich) the rich people have access to to avoid it. Now you tell me is that what you expect from "equal citizens"? Does equal mean you can get away with your responsibility? How are you treating people like me as equal citizens?

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

First of all, there are different types of asset classes (stocks, bonds, real estate, companies) that the rich can invest their money. You'll need to equalize the taxes on every single one of them and get rid of every single loophole to affectuate getting more money. You go from 15% to 35% in tax on their dividends, they sell and buy a piece of land, where they'll pay local property taxes, but can defer all of their capital gains until they sell. You get zero income taxes on that. This is just an ordinary example, there are I'm sure many many more complex ways of legally avoiding or deferring these increased taxes. The only people who get a "majority" of their income from dividends are people who would have at least several million dollars (I don't even know what the average dividend is for the S&P 500 but I bet it is 2%-3%) Of course they can take more risk and get higher dividend yields, and of course, they can lose their ass by investing in a Washington Mutual or somesuch where you can actually lose all of your principal. Anyway, I think the investment returns should be taxed at a higher rate for short term investments and slowly go down the longer you keep your money in an investment. This would encourage the type of long term, stable investment such as Warren Buffett does.

[-] 1 points by jssk (170) from Naperville, IL 1 year ago

Well, I think tax on long term investment returns should be the same rate too. But if this was the only disagreement on the issue this country would be a much happier place now.

Yeah I think with the increased capital gain tax, therefore increased government revenue, we can maybe afford to lower, if not eliminate in my opinion, corporate tax. This way it lowers burdens for people all over the spectrum and attract new businesses.

And it takes away rich people's phony excuse not to pay tax too.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

What I'm saying is that whatever you want to tax is fine, but just know that there will be a perfectly legal reaction to it by the wealthy. They won't sit still and take it in the ass. Some might pay out of the goodness of their hearts, but will be offset by others who will go out of their way to pay even less than they are now. There are even a stupid few who might, to prove a point, just convert their money to cash and earn no income. Just live off the principal and cut their spending some to make up for the lost revenue. No taxes whatsoever to the government.

[-] 1 points by jssk (170) from Naperville, IL 1 year ago

Yeah, that's why those loop holes need to be eliminated. Taxing needs to be a simpler process. For example everything is taxed upfront as the revenue happens. Like a withholding or something. Then at the end of the year you can file for your rebates if you did anything to earn tax credit. I'm no accountant so I don't know what the right system should be. But I think it can be done, at least for the most part. This is America we have so many smart people out there.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

If you've been paying attention, the Republicans have been crowing about getting rid of the loopholes in exchange for lowering rates, a simpler process, and one that will be more fair. I think it was something like 25%. The dividend and cap gains rate is the one that they hadn't budged on. If you look at the total effective (not marginal) rate paid by those earning over $343,000/year (the 1% threshold), the overall effective rate was about 11% in income taxes (less for the next 49%, and a bit over 1% for the bottom 50% of the public). If you just raised that effective rate to 15%, you'd raise a lot of money, and I'd think that anyone would think 15% with no loopholes is fair for the well off.

[-] 1 points by jssk (170) from Naperville, IL 1 year ago

Are you saying the next 49%'s effective rate is less than 11%?

As long as the tax code has a good structure, with wealthier people paying higher percentage than the less wealthy. The overall number can be adjusted according to the economy. I think most of us are willing to give the government some freedom on that.

And you said republicans have been crowing about it. I don't think that's what Paul Ryan's budget proposed.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

That's exactly what I'm saying. I'm not talking about marginal rates. Who cares about those? I'm talking about what people actually pay. The next 49% makes a combined $9.5 trillion out of the total $13.3 trillion in individual income. The top 1% make about $1.3 trillion, and the bottom 50% make up the rest, and paid 1.44% effective rate (2010 figures). The only big issue recently is the investment tax rates which are 15%, which a lot of very rich people have a lot of. I think we ought to try a non-two tiered system at the top, lower the regular rate and raise the investment rate to something like 25%, get rid of deduction over a certain level of income, and you'd have a flatter simpler tax, but something I think the wealthy would live with, and not send them scrambling to their tax accountant's office.

[-] 1 points by jssk (170) from Naperville, IL 1 year ago

Yeah, I think we generally agree on this. I think a better idea than lower the top tier rate, is to lower or minimize corporate tax, since the rich people claim they pay it, it counts as lower tax for them. And it will encourage new businesses. Of course the condition is the total revenue remains the same, since we are already in such a big deficit.

[-] 1 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

Hit a nerve, huh?

Again, why do you care about these people? They have more paper that you, so suddenly that makes them "better?" Sorry I don't agree with that notion.

"You of course will come up with some empathetic, sympathetic, boo-fucking-hoo emotional gobbledygook to justify your discriminatory ideas."

LOL... I guess caring about other people is a crime now?

"You don't see the rich as equal citizens with equal rights"

Of course they have equal rights. My beef is with them having more than equal benefits when it comes to taxes and politics. The person with the most funding wins the elections. Why is that?

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

I'm fine with public funding of elections, as long as there is a rational way to do it, not American Idol style online petitions. Why didn't Obama use public funding as he promised last time? If you would stop and try and see with slightly less green colored glasses on about people with money, you will realize that they don't sit and hoard their money in a vault. Most pay a lot of taxes (top 1% average $227,000 in income taxes a year). Add state property, personal property, sales taxes on the goods they buy, which are generally, shall we say, not the Walmart brand. The industries and jobs that are supported down the line when they travel, build houses, buy boats, aircraft or automobiles, the jobs provided to service people of all kinds because they have the money to dine out frequently. And then there are the organizations they support, from university schools of health or law, to entire wings of hospitals, to funding opera or other cultural programs, to sponsoring baseball fields for little leagues, or any of a thousand other philanthropic endeavors. And then they keep some of their money to invest in new ventures in order to make more money, but usually as a consequence emplying more people. A lot of the multi billionaires with ridiculous wealth like Bill Gates or Warren Buffett have already chosen to give most of it away, although, it's funny, because none of them have chosen to give it to the government.

[-] -1 points by slammersworlwillremainhere (-34) from New York, NY 1 year ago

actually they provide you with a place and the tools to perform your labor....you could be left to your own devices to make your own tools and provide your own means of existence......but we have a system where one person can have an idea and enlist the specific labors of someone else to complete part of the task required to bring about the results of that idea.....

and the person accepting the job is provided with all that is necessary to complete the task, and compensated for their time based on it's value in the marketplace.....

How is it "your" money that they spend....they gave you EVERYTHING...what did YOU create on your own? NOTHING!..were you not compensated at the agree upon amount? and if it wasn't enough why did you agree to it, or continue to perform the tasks if the agreement was changed?

When you create and build the facilities, provide the tools and machinery, benefits and salary, etc......then you can say it's "YOUR" money....until then, you are just a hamster on someone else's wheel......

[-] 2 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

"When you create and build the facilities,"

They didn't build the facilities by themselves. How many people does it take to build a factory?

"provide the tools and machinery,"

They didn't build the tools from scratch, some Chinese kids did. How many people are involved in building and shipping that equipment?

There are thousands of people who have had some part in the success of any person on this planet. No one did it completely alone. Unless you are trying to tell me that these successful people built their computers by hand, mined for all of the raw materials, built the buildings by themselves, built the tools themselves, paved the roads that they use themselves...

[-] -1 points by slammersworlwillremainhere (-34) from New York, NY 1 year ago

nope...but they created the structure, organized the principle idea's, set up the administration of them, coordinated the tasks, did the planning, made the decisions, hired the right people, and adjusted the arrangement to make the most of it's efficiency......

and then you came along and did some small task, after all the foundational groundwork was laid out by someone else......

they can survive without you performing their task, but you cannot survive without their organization of efforts.......that is why they receive higher compensation...they do what you did not, cannot, or will not, do.......

[-] 2 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

"nope...but they created the structure,"

No they didn't. Architects were hired to design the building. Contractors were hired to build the building. How many people have degrees in Architecture?

"organized the principle idea's, set up the administration of them,"

And who taught the owners these ideas? Teachers? At a college? That required how many people to build, fund, and administrate? Who wrote the textbooks that these ideas came from? Who cut down the trees that created the pulp from which the text books were manufactured?

"made the decisions,"

Like what the Enron executives did? Making decisions != making the RIGHT decisions.

"hired the right people,"

No they didn't after a very early point. HR did the hiring. They have the experience and the know-how to hire the right people, NOT the CEO.

" and adjusted the arrangement to make the most of it's efficiency......"

You mean they took ideas that other people wrote down in books like "The Goal" and applied them? How many people were involved in writing those books, formulating those theories after hundreds of years, making the materials to print those books, teaching the material in those books... I can go on and on...

If you had literally NO help, ZERO people, ideas, or institutions to get you off the ground in society, you would not make it anywhere. At best you would figure out that pointy things kill animals better than blunt ones, and if you're lucky you'll figure out what fire is before starving to death. Worst case is that you end up dying of some disease that was managed hundreds of years ago...

[-] -1 points by slammersworlwillremainhere (-34) from New York, NY 1 year ago

Wow....you really are dense

Structure, Framework, etc.....is not about buildings......

It's about the development of the business before any shovel hits the ground, or anyone is hired, it's about the idea's that create the final product

before Henry Ford there was not a functioning assembly line....and Henry Ford was not known for being particularly well read, at least not enough to have gotten the reference from Adam Smith's "wealth of nations" and it's discussion of "division of labor"....he saw something in his mind that improved the efficiency of producing his product and he adopted it in the development of bringing that product to market.....

The funny thing is that you prove my point with your every response....each person you list as equally important to the developer of the business is brought into the situation by the person you claim is not more important....they don't come together randomly, or haphazardly, it is determined by the person to whom the idea of the business is forwarded.....the persons you list did not, of their own volition approach the person creating the business and offer their services......it is the organization and administration of the developer of the business that sought out their specific services, and without that invitation those divisions of labor wouldn't exist.....those divisions of labor you mentioned.....contrators, HR, etc....all find their genesis in the same location as the developer of a business, originally people found that they excelled in a particular skill, and began to market that skill to others for compensation, and as time went along the skills became more and more specialized, but that doesn't diminish the necessary skill that is required to assemble the right principles and create the right framework to go from an idea to a tangible business, and THAT is what deserves, and demands, much higher compensation than any specific skill or task.......

it is a chicken and egg question....which came first, the employer...or the employee, and of course, the answer is the employer.......

You seem to think that all of these principles approached the person who decided to go into business and made it possible for him to do so.....and that just isn't how it works...

It is unfortunate that you have such a shallow understanding of how business and commerce is actually conducted......

I am not sure where your reference to CEO comes from, I am not talking about a CEO....I am talking about the creator of an industry or business.....a CEO is an employee, in most cases......

[-] 2 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

You don't get it.

I'm going to fight for equality, no matter what. You're not going to stop me. I will not give up, no matter what BS you throw at me. We, the people, will win. We are going to topple this corrupt society and build a new one from the ashes. Ones that gives everyone a fair, equal shot at success and gives everyone a fair living wage.

[-] -1 points by slammersworlwillremainhere (-34) from New York, NY 1 year ago

I get it, trust me....

You simply live in an impractical, academically created, social group reinforced, false reality....and you refuse to acknowledge things as they are, since the actual reality of the world is at odds with the sheltered and false identity you have created for yourself in the protective cocoon of theoretical absurdity......

there is no equality in compensation, unless there is equality in effort, and not just simple effort, but the development of personal and professional attributes, education (self and formal), initiative, creativity, resourcefulness, and a myriad of other efforts....practiced by those at higher compensation levels and largely ignored by those at the lower end.....it's not an apples to apples comparison....

You apparently thing everyone should "get" equally, even when they don't "give" equally...which violates natural law and can never be, no matter how much you fight.......you need to get with the program, become successful, encourage others to find identity in their positive attributes instead of their failures, and help others with your success......instead of wasting your time demanding that all the aspects of your life be provided to you at little or no cost, or effort.....

wake up!

[-] 2 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

"instead of wasting your time demanding that all the aspects of your life be provided to you at little or no cost, or effort....."

Another projection that the trolls like to bring up again and again...

Go ahead. Look through my posting history and point out any post where I PERSONALLY ask for ANYTHING to be provided to me.

[-] 0 points by slammersworlwillremainhere (-34) from New York, NY 1 year ago

whether it is a personal request, or a request for a group you belong to, it is still the same demand.....

[-] 2 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

You assume that I'm poor. You are misguided.

I know that to you guys its a crime to have empathy. You can get that trait back. Start by turning off the TV, putting down your business opinion books, and going outside.

[-] 1 points by jssk (170) from Naperville, IL 1 year ago

The wheel needs the hamster too. It's a mutual thing. No one side can take full credit.

[-] 1 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

I am above average in intellect. My grandfather was doctor. Other relatives followed suit. Some of the most prosperous ones owned rural electric companies, cable companies, telephone companies. I was different even as child and was singled out and picked on. I actually contemplated social problem, psychological problems, and a host of other things. I decided my mind and soul were the most valuable items I possessed and were the things that could best serve my fellow man and also could leave me vulnerable to the greatest degree of exploitation. I weighed my options, go to college and then sell my services to a system I disliked for a fraction of my actual worth, or live a modest life and only do jobs a trained monkey could do. That is exactly what I have done, I have given the best of myself only to my children and close family members. I have no regrets. I am not troubled by lack of material possessions or high social standing. Society may go on believing the cream will always rise but I know the magnitude of what I withheld. This society has gifted children dropping out of high school, and successful people of low intellect stoked about how they don't have to compete with those gifted drop-outs. This country has lost more than it realizes and it will continue to see the those who can do refuse to do so for the 1%. My mind and soul are simply not offered up on the market at any price, ever. I'll flip your hamburger, I'll scrub your toilet, I'll man a machine in your factory and be a model of economy of movement but that's all you can have of what was given to me by the grace of God.

[-] -3 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Well, now you know how some of the 1% might feel when you'd like to tell them what they can earn, exactly how much they must share, how terrible they are, etc. Maybe they'll just say that they'll do just enough to be fairly well off, but you'll never get the best of what they could have achieved had they been free. At least no one's out protesting you for your choices.

[-] 1 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

That is so funny. You have an awesome sense of humor! Plenty of people protest my choices and constant refusal to be placed in other positions. In the end, I've never been fired for because I am simply too good at what I will do. Occasionally I can't stop myself and I throw a manager a bone and patiently explain the reason for the higher % of food costs is not employees slipping pies out the back door, its the fact that the franchise is loading the bottoms the boxes with bad, spoiled produce and if he continues to accept the shipments without showing the truck driver a third of the tomatoes are rotten, well its going to continue and get even worse. Believe me, people hate that I just want a place on the assembly a line or to scrub toilets and make beds. Its not something management sees and isn't irked by. My sister is even smarter and too has trouble avoiding paperwork and advancement into positions she wants no part of. She and her husband are starting a business so she'll be working for herself and it won't cause so much stress. The 1% or rather the .01% who is really the subject of the protests has had more than enough freedom to wreck economies and governments globally as you well know. I am not free to blow their brains out and redistribute the worlds resources, nor should they be free to pay people with a sack rice or patent seed or blow up children, hospitals and anybody near it with a camera. The illusion that anyone else has any power at all or any real means of protest is fading. People are realizing that they have been enslaved by debts and their addition to electronic trinkets which amount to the slave beads of this era. You admire the rich and want to expand their power and control for them. You are a regular modern day Buffalo hunter, do your job well and maybe they give some smallpox infested blankets for xmas. You don't try to patent and control the world's seed because you have noble intentions.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

You see, I don't worry about the rich, and I don't make excuses. You have made your choice. Maybe you could have contributed much more to society, or maybe you're a neurotic, bipolar bitch that no one can get along with and so you have been relegated to a solitary job, who knows? I just laugh when you write that your sister is going to reduce her stress by starting her own business. Laughable. That is, unless she or he has a trust fund or something to live off of while they're starting their little venture. I actually hope they pass some of this "fairness" legislation, if only to show you dumbasses that 1) either you won't get the money that you gleefully think will be redistributed, or 2) that it is so infinitesimally small that it doesn't make any difference. Who's to blame after that? Whose money is next? You guys are like an alcoholic at an intervention, sitting there pointing the finger at everyone else (see B. Obama-----Bush, the rich, oil speculators, tsunami's, greatest recession since the beginning of time, etc.) when it is you who are the problem.

[-] 1 points by elf3 (2045) 1 year ago

Here is what you don't get - It's our money to begin with it was being distributed to the one percent - we are merely taking it back!!! - how ya like them apples - huh? You will argue with this of course but you're wrong. Why is it that politicians are so wealthy? Why is it that they pass laws and distribute tax benefits and loopholes and allow deregulation that harms people but benefits monopolies? Why is it that companies were suddenly allowed to patent life which was originally forbidden. Why is the government allowing Fannie Mae to sell properties in bulk discounts to Wallstreet so they can rent them out and bypassing people who could use them to buy a home. (when Fannie Mae was funded by the people and the banks were bailed out with our money too)? Why is the tax system designed to benefit those who already have money and can afford to invest in capital gains? Why are the voting machines run by a corporation who openly supports one party (the party of wealth) over the other? Why do we allow the credit monitoring system to be privatized and partners with those who would give credit based on the scores? Why is it that we allow private companies to drill on public lands for private profit? Why are they letting corporations create false demand and scarcity to cause inflation in the economy? Why can a private corporation take your land to build a mall or condo complex for private profit. Why do the taxpayers foot the bill for the highway and lights that go to it? Why are they giving ompanies a tax benefit for sheltering or manufacturing overseas ans with slave labor? Why don't they just allow corporations to automatically deduct what they see fit from our pay to cover items they think we should have like health insurance? Why don't we all just forgo actual money and have our paychecks direct deposited into the accounts of private monopolistic corporations to pay for the things they have set prices on. Or to the landlords who are buying up then renting out all the land. Oh yes we do that already. Orwellian.

[-] 1 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

In fact, since my dad has decided to use his farm as collateral for small family owned businesses, I may decide to go to tech school with my special needs child and start and employ her in a repair business. I'm all about recycling and repairing things instead of just tossing them out. Its green. In a depressed economy people go for repairing and recycling. Then the corporations wouldn't even get me as a manual laborer at all when I re-enter the workforce. I'd be helping people go longer without buying new products! Its a total win, win, for me. I never would have thought of that if it wasn't for talking with you! Thanks! Have a nice day! ;)

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Great idea, Jaded. Of course, I feel sorry for your poor dad. I can just see you paying him back if your new business fails (oh, I forgot, it can't, because you have your dad's never ending "start up" capital, a well you will drink from again and again). Sorry you lost your farm, Dad. Love you, Daddy.

[-] 2 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

My dad isn't going to loose his farm over the small loan to my sister or because of a small loan to me in the future. We are talking a fraction of his yearly income. Using a resource like land wisely as collateral to start a business in town instead of buying farm equipment and seed is a better investment. Its Okay for regular people to use what they have and invest in themselves. And if they all happen to liberals, so much the better, and poo on you! It rocks your little world when the owners of business aren't conservative right wingers I can tell. I'd pay my dad back 10 times over because he'd own 51% of my business, the same as any investor or backer would. It would help him in his retirement. Why should I give that honor to some wealthy stranger just to secure start up capital? Why not keep the whole thing for ourselves? We can. People like you need some friendly competition. Being a merchant is not brain surgery. In the efforts we are making to buy local, perhaps we need to take a closer look at which locals!

[-] -1 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

I think you're a smart little cookie, Jaded. Make sure you pay everyone in your business a "living wage" with full benefits, retirement, and healthcare.

[-] 2 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

I do think its hilarious that you are against the type of small businesses that directly serve the poor. I do think its hilarious that the real-estate bubble bought your unending loyalty to the Oligarchy. The real-estate market is not what it was, good luck. I also think you totally underestimate people. OWS went global and more and more people are waking up. They are going to start spending differently, thinking differently and be in general a lot harder to handle. Real-estate is not going to be what it was in general. I'm sorry for you but that bubble has burst. I can see you aren't very busy today wheeling and dealing and cutting those big deals. I can understand why you feel threatened enough by OWS to come here on the boards and troll. I can't say that agree with you. I can't say that your opinions will influence me or the choices I make. I don't think trolls are achieving anything here. They just look like pathetic little bots.

[-] 2 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

I do know how to lock a door when I leave I and open it when I get back? These types of business do not generate the income to hire extra employees or pay benefits. You need to be there to price the used merchandise your store buys. And you need to be able to do it yourself. You will need a key and sign that says, "Out to lunch be back at 1:00". This is how it is done Mr Big Time real-estate investor. When you are helping them and saving them a lot of money they understand someone may not pick up on the first ring. I'm not planning to hire a bunch of people to run a business for me for crap wages while I sit back on my heels. If I had the business to need to hire extra help, I'd have the money to pay them well. I wouldn't cheat them. A business with fewer than five employees has a hard time purchasing group medical insurance from insurance companies. And all of the start ups I'd do would certainly fall into that category. Its not my policy or wishes its BCBS and their corporate policies and prices that would create barriers to providing insurance. Right back at you Mr Right Wing.

[-] 1 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

Good job Jaded. We need more business leaders like you, and less like the trolls want us to become.

[-] -1 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Well I guess Walmart or Exxon could use that excuse because they make profit margins much less than your business will make, the only difference is they have a ton of employees, but per employee it does not make sense for them to 1) be able to keep their pricing competitive so they can keep all these employees and 2) blame it on the insurance carriers, or 3) just say they can't to hire people for crap wages, and 4) maybe THEIR customers understand that they're saving them a lot of money in pricing so they can't afford a lot of extra bennies for the employees besides maybe a few stock options at some point. Just joshing wish you sister. But it is interesting when you contemplate opening your own business how the demands of the left are suddenly not possible. And on the contrary, I have had several of my previous tenants become successful and outgrow my humble incubator space.

[-] 1 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

Walmart built a distribution center in a town near by. The town agreed that no factory could move into town and offer a higher wage than whatever Walmart wished to offer at their distribution center. This company that made lawnmower parts tried come and operate there but in the end, they wanted to in a place where they could offer higher wages. Don't talk to me about what a great job Walmart is doing. Its a deal with the devil if their ever was one.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

How does the town have a legal right to determine what wages a company pays? I'm not a lawyer, but i would think that is illegal. And I don't see why a town would make that deal with Walmart for a couple of hundred low paying DC jobs. Doesn't make a lot of sense or pass the smell test.

[-] 1 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

lol

[-] 1 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

What money? What problem? I am supported because in the divorce I got alimony and child support. I don't currently have to work, I have a special needs child. In order to purchase childcare for her, I'd have to make more than is possible. It is more economical for me to raise her myself. As far as my sister goes, my father is backing them because he can easily borrow the money against his farm. Its a small, low cost, low start up endeavor. My father and ex-husband also have a business and they have way less stress working for themselves. Everyone I know who works for themselves has less stress. They don't have to worry about getting fired or replaced, they end up more financially secure. They don't have to deal with the psychopaths in upper management. Why would you perpetuate the myth that going into business for yourself is something terrible? You are not against the .01% having too much but you are against regular people have choices and their own pie to divide amongst themselves free and clear of publicly traded stocks? You are funny! Its always interesting to see a troll try to boot-lick his way to the top. Simply because I have made the choices I have you expected me to be standing in a breadline? Sorry to disappoint you, when I said I gave the best only to family, I meant it. They are smart people too, I have a value and standing and they appreciate me doing what I do for them.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Jaded, I know all about all this because I work for myself and have not drawn a paycheck in 30 years since high school. I have 3 kids and know how stressful it is. You're sister is going to be under less stress because it is not HER money that is going to be lost if she doesn't do well in her business. For ME, that would be even more stress because I would feel obligated to pay my family member back that money regardless. You are quite right that it can be rewarding at times, and most of the time you are free to do as you please. But you are also completely free to fall on your ass and go broke. Here's what I want to suggest to you, Jaded. I want to suggest that you go out and start your own business without any backing from your father or someone else you can stiff if the business doesn't go well. I want you to give up your car as collateral to a bank or maybe a loan shark in case you decide you don't want to pay them. You have just proved to me that you are an uneducated rube who was delusions of grandeur of having had the talent or capability of becoming much more, so you have made excuses and found a scapegoat for your problems and a cause to join as an outlet for your anger at yourself. You won't be gettinng another comment from me.

[-] 1 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

Owning a repair shop is delusions of grandeur? You are the one with delusions. The businesses I have seen fail are ones where they don't secure adequate start up capital. You run out of money, you run out of merchandise, you go down. That is the easiest way to doom any startup. Don't tell me you didn't know that when you made your suggestions! lol

[-] -1 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

You're kind of hard to keep up with. One minute you're manning an assembly line or scrubbing toilets, flipping hamburgers, jobs a "trained monkey" can do, and now you're owning your own repair shop??? A trained monkey doesn't open and manage its own business. I happen to own a piece of commercial property which has 1500sf spaces, specifically designed for start up businesses. I saw the economy laying off people, the trend toward self-reliance and not on corporations. I have been rewarded with near 100% occupancy for the last 10 years. It gives me a lot of hope. My tenants are all 1-4 man operations taking a risk for a better life. You are quite right about start up capital. I actually bring that up when getting ready to sign a lease with a tenant. I do short term (1 year) leases, because tht's about as far out as I could reasonably expect a small business to plan and capitalize for. But I do outline the bills they will have, at least from a facility standpoint, so they can plan accordingly. I work for myself in real estate, and my hair prematurely grayed because of the worry about whether or not deals I had going would close or not, because it is a world in which arbitrary decisions are made quite often. I accepted the risk involved at an early age and got used to it because I valued freedom of movement and association and I wanted to be able to be around for my kids, go to their games and other events, and be home for dinner. I guess you could say I was a boring, regular Dad, but I think my kids have benefitted from it greatly.

[-] 2 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

I'm not totally stupid just because I choose to work in manual labor and do not wish to think for other people. Actually I flipped over to the local tech school courses offered. What I didn't see and would have liked to see was appliance repair, but I'm not half bad with computers and see several programs are geared toward that. I was teasing somewhat, I'd thought about the computer programs because my daughter is also good with them. Assisting her to attend classes and be able to get out and work is a real dream of mine for her because she loves people but has problems interacting with them. Actually what I am considering is what is needed in my area, amount of competition, and what can work in a depressed economy. You see someone in a blue collar job and assume they working to their fullest mental capacities? You are wrong about that. The businesses I am looking at don't necessarily bring in great rewards in the form of money but they provide valuable services to poorer people in the community. Being able to buy used or get something repaired is important. The start up costs are quite minimal and I know who to rent from to see to I'm not eaten alive by overhead in a mini-mall. A used book store wouldn't even require much education at all because I know people who can teach me the how to do the taxes and the books. There are things you can do, while they will not make you rich, will benefit others and allow you independence. These options simply weren't available to me when I was younger. To start a business wasn't on the table back then. Once a family has one going (especially since it generates a nice income), its far easier to branch out and share knowledge.

[-] -1 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Jade, you are an enterprising sort, and it seems like you've done a lot of homework on your chosen field. Good for you. If it comes with small monetary benefits and helps people, that's your choice. It's YOUR choice to make. All I am asking is that you don't judge other people for the choices THEY make, even if their choices happen to reap higher monetary rewards. Every job done benefits someone. My job in real estate is not a manual labor job, but it does help people, not in the direct way that yours might where you have a one-on-one relationship with another person. If you look at consultants of all types, they save their clients money by providing specific localized knowledge and experience. You can make the argument that it helps put more money into fat cats hands, or you can make the argument that it helps that company keep people employed. I am totally for what you are doing and hope that you are successful. I think that if a person is working in a menial job and has capabilities far higher, then they are cheating themselves and potentially others. It'd be like if I was on Survivor and was the biggest strongest guy, but refused to help carry logs and instead peeled coconuts.

[-] 2 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

One man's freedom should end where the next man's freedom begins. This is not the freedom you advocate. Freedom to patent food and create a monopoly by steamrolling over everyone with an army of high-priced attorneys and bribed politicians? You are not a champion of freedom, you want to be an enabler for some very abusive people. Abuse is abuse is abuse. You are championing the right to be as abusive as you can afford to be. Didn't think we notice that? Didn't think we'd point to the bodies of dead reporters, babies, doctors because someone needs to control the oil? Clear out all the jails and prove everyone has the freedom to murder rape and pillage. Freedom is freedom, God gives to all of us the good and the bad.

[-] -1 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

First sentence is logicall, so quit trying to steal other people's money. The top 1% have make 17% of the income and pay more than 30% of all the taxes, not 17% of them. I honestly can't comprehend the rest.

[-] 2 points by JadedGem (895) 1 year ago

We are talking about a very few people controlling the worlds resources and exploiting people and governments for capital gains. Our freedoms are quite limited in how we protest. Their freedoms are not, bombs are dropped and people die. I'm not personally against anyone doing well. However they are using their freedom to enslave others and take away their choices. I believe wanted everyone to make his or her own choices. The world is quite tired of turn the other cheek so they can use their freedom to strike it too! You may not like it, if they are to get away with murder, then what should the rest of us be free to do about it?

[-] -1 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Can you please tell me what company is murdering people? I'd like to know. I believe the United State military, under the command of one Barack Obama, commander in chief, is ultimately responsible for dropping any bombs on people. And also please let me know of a single company (here in the U.S.) that prevents people from doing their homework, showing up at school, applying for college grants, going to tech school as you are, or a junior college, or making them work for them. Yes, I'm afraid some, especially older people have been passed by with the global economy and spread of technology. We do have safety net programs in place for a great many. That's why I'm trying to get the word out, especially to those I still have some infuence with (my kids), that they need to think earlier now, much earlier than we had to, about the type of life they want to lead, whether they want or feel they need to have money, not to rely on another person (i.e. a husband) for their future livelihood, to not indulge every urge that comes over them in purchasing. Are there inequitable bubbles in the system. I think healthcare spending and consumption is ridiculous. I think the cost of a 4 year college is ridiculous, and think the government should get out of the business of loaning money for it even though we are partaking of it now, because it's just causing the cost to go higher because colleges just raise the cost, and the government keeps loaning the money to the kids and parents, who feel like they have no choice. You agree to pay it back, and it is not wiped out by bankruptcy laws.

[-] 0 points by Odin (583) 1 year ago

I remember going back and forth with you several months ago. I had thought about apologizing for being a bit harsh, but I am now glad I didn't. It seems to me that you are purposely misrepresenting this movement to discredit it.. You believe that your qualities are superior to those here that support OWS. You say some good things, and then follow it up with one of your 'teachy know-it-all, self-righteous rants,' where you either purposely or not, misrepresent what this is about, and then proceed to give your version of what life is about. Yes, like I said before, I can easily see how the people at the GAs you have attended look at you with suspicion. To me..you appear to be a 2nd generation troll..a bit more sophisticated, but nevertheless easily identifiable.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

You mistake me with someone else. I wouldn't be caught dead at a "GA" or caught chanting like a Jim Jones sycophant. You don't seem to like the logic that I use, that's not my problem. I'm just trying to point out the inconsistencies with Jaded's view.

[-] 0 points by Odin (583) 1 year ago

Ok, maybe not the GAs, sorry... but you are the woman who owns some wharehouses, rents them out, and mistakenly thinks that you are on a higher moral ground than most people here, right? If I am wrong again about the former...I know that i am not about the latter.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

If you read any of my numerous other posts, you'll see I'm not a woman. I am not interested in the morality of it. I don't, for instance, let people get away with making hyperbolic rants about police brutality (such as you see every day with OWS), and then turn around and insinuate that there is going to be violence if what they want is not given to them voluntarily. I can only give my account of what I have experienced and that which I see is fair and just. I do want people to have equal opportunity in our society, but not specify equal outcomes. Even if you gave everyone equal amounts of money, it would not stay that way for long. People with more ability, more ingenuity, more salesmanship ability, negotiating skill or whatever, would end up with more of it. There are individual circumstances, but in general, the things that keep people poor are 1) lack of an education, and 2) lack of a job. If we can try to focus on those two things, rather than playing tug of war over the existing pot of money that's there, we'll all be better off.

[-] 0 points by Odin (583) 1 year ago

How did the existing pot of money become so top heavy? That happened because the system was rigged in the financial elite's favor with the help of corrupt politicians who took bribes. There are very few people who have a problem with people who excel, work hard, and get rich providing they don't step on their workers toes to get there. You purposely misrepresent this movement to make your argument seem more valid. It might to you, but as you can see by this forum...it is an invalid defense of what has, and still is going on.

Those who choose to devote more of their time to family, and other pursuits, but still work hard, may even be well educated, and/or have good job skills should also should be able to provide for their family albeit in a more moderate way of course. Increasingly, especially over the last thirty years, that has become more and more difficult as people have to work longer hours just to make ends meet. They are also being forced to pay for the banks mistakes. There are two trends in play here....one trend is going up for the wealthiest, and the other one is going down for just about everyone else. Can't you see that? I think you can, but just don't want to admit it.

Big bankers committing fraud and screwing the average joe...with impunity... in a multitude of ways, and making obscene amounts of money....taking huge bonuses...CEOs making an unprecedented 250 times more than their average worker...jobs being shipped overseas.......minimun wage worth $2.75 less than in 1968.....28% of wealth concentrated amongst the super-rich, about the same as it was in 1928..compared to the early 80s when it was under 10% (before neoliberalism was instituted).....and civil liberties going down the tubes, and YOU don't see a problem with any of that?? PLEASE!

[-] 0 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

Why do you care so much about how the 1% feel? Why not care more about the people who comprise the other 99% of society?

We're all just lumps of cells, but apparently some lumps of cells are better than others? Because some lumps of cells have some arbitrarily defined "wealth?"

[-] -3 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

The so called 1% are citizens of this country just like you are. You sound like some southern segregationist accusing his fellow white man of being a "n----r lover". I mean, seriously. Who's the one talking about how the rich think they're better than others or whatever. You. Who has been demonizing this group of people? You. Sharpton. O'Donnell. Maddow. Klein. et fucking al. I mean, what would you think if I said, "Why do care so much about the poor 1% at the bottom. Why not just worry about the people who are able to pull their weight and not be a drag on society? It's not right either way.

[-] 5 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 1 year ago

Hey, shit-for-brains, it is not the people who are being demonized, but the system that produces the greatest income gap the country has seen since the days of the Robber Barons. It is the raw power that one tiny group has over the entire world, due exclusively to the incomprehensible and virtually unprecedented concentration of capital in the hands of a very few. It is the undermining of democracy itself this system creates that is being opposed. But you must feel perfectly OK with all the money and power resting in the hands of unelected officials.

The 400 wealthiest people in this country, the most powerful in the world, own the same amount of wealth as the bottom 150,000,000 (one hundred and fifty MILLION) citizens. And that strikes you are normal or rational?

It is the US that used to criticize that very thing in third world countries, and leaders on both the right AND left agreed that it was part of what defined those countries as third world. With 50% of the entire citizenry in this country living at or near the poverty line, that third world status is what we are quickly arriving at. Your defense of it is not only pathetic and delusional, but your coming to this site - one specifically dedicated to those who are trying to stop the anti-democratic forces of corruption and greed - and somehow think you'll get anywhere is the very definition of psychosis.

[-] 2 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 1 year ago

Just remember, "They" only have as much power as we are willing to give them....

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33128) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Well said - very well said.

[-] 1 points by Odin (583) 1 year ago

gforz is what a 2nd generation troll looks like...says some good things, and then follows it up by purposely misrepresenting what this is about, and then adds a lot of self righteous bull shit.

[-] 1 points by gnomunny (5671) from St Louis, MO 1 year ago

I think it's actually far less than 1%. I saw that statistic last year. I think the six richest families in American own as much wealth as the bottom 150,000,000 of us. I wonder what fraction of 1% that actually is? How come so many people don't see this as a problem?

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

Hmmm. I read the top 400 people. Doesn't really matter, I think. In either case, it is beyond comprehension how anyone can see that condition as just or sane. Do they really think that money was earned in direct proportion to the value of their work or contribution to the economy? Do they really not understand how such a condition creates unfettered, anti-democratic power? Sometimes I read these troll's verbal poop and just shake my head at the sheer stupidity.

[-] 1 points by gnomunny (5671) from St Louis, MO 1 year ago

Hell, it could be the top 400 and the six richest families, they do like to keep their wealth between themselves. I sure wouldn't be surprised.

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

I wouldn't either.

Funny thing, i saw this coming way back in 1982, and told my friends as much then. They said i was being melodramatic, but I saw what Reagan was doing and the kind of laws, and more importantly, mindset, he was ushering in.

Interestingly enough, the Rockerfeller Foundation published a report around that time assessing the policy, tax rate, and other changes, and they more or less predicted this as well, including the kind of OWS protests we are engaged in. The difference is they predicted much more widespread (and violent) demonstrations and even large scale rioting, and their timescale was a few years sooner, but other than those details, they pretty much nailed it. I don't think they really measured, though, just how much of the population would be so easily hoodwinked by the propaganda the 1% has been spewing nonstop since then.

[-] 1 points by gnomunny (5671) from St Louis, MO 1 year ago

The Rockefeller Foundation, go figure. Whatever one thinks about these foundations, they're certainly awash with brilliant minds. That is interesting. They're probably very pleased with themselves that the scenario turned out to lean more towards best-case, if I'm reading that right. And in regards to your last statement, I'm sure they're pleased with that as well. When you look at the, in my opinion huge, change in the American citizen/consumer over the last thirty years it appears they've been very successful. Very successful indeed.

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

I'm not at all sure how pleased they are about any of this. They have been fairly left wing, despite the founder's name on the letterhead, for quite some time. They are, in fact pretty consistently attacked as "socialists" by the Right.

The person who started that organization is long since dead, and the people who have been in charge for many years have nothing to do with its founder.

The ones most pleased are the right wing and the Libertarians. Despite all their complaining, this inequity we live with today is closer to their ideal that at any time since the Robber Barons. The only thing they are unhappy about is that people like us make some noise about it.

So let's make more noise!

[-] 1 points by gnomunny (5671) from St Louis, MO 1 year ago

Yeah, I hear the name "Rockefeller' and automatically bristle. I'd like to think that some of them try, at least to some degree, to be unbiased. I'm getting cynical, I guess. But somebody is definitely pleased things have been milder than their study may have indicated.

I agree, we must make some noise. If not now, probably never.

[Removed]

[-] 0 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

I love it when trolls engage in projections.

You're the one who is making being poor a personal issue. From your posts you attack an entire group of people because you have this stereotype planted in your head of laziness or poor decisions. You demonize the poor as some sort of horrible abomination that deserves everything that it gets. You're the one who has some sort of personal vendetta against the majority of society.

I just want the rich to pay their damn taxes. They get to keep more of their money than we do. That's not fair.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Xenu, they pay a higher marginal and effective tax rate on the same classification of work. If you want to talk about dividends and capital gains rates, that's another thing, but I think those rates should also be based on the length of time one has invested the money, to encourage long term investment like the Warren Buffetts of the world. Now, you need to admit that your second paragraph is not true. You don't JUST want the rich to pay their taxes. Isn't it true that you want a lot more than that?

[-] 0 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

"Xenu, they pay a higher marginal and effective tax rate on the same classification of work."

They keep a larger percentage of their money than everyone else.

"Now, you need to admit that your second paragraph is not true. You don't JUST want the rich to pay their taxes. Isn't it true that you want a lot more than that?"

Ooh, do tell what my "master plan" is, LOL!

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Well, logically speaking, if the rich (whose income you mysteriously haven't identified by the way, but for today's purposes taking our dear leader's current definition, subject to change, mind you, of $1 million) "pay their damn taxes", and it raises $5 billion a year, and we have an annual deficit of $1.3-$1.4 trillion, then logically speaking you would either have to admit you didn't give a crap about the deficit or debt because, after all, you won't be paying it, or you would have to have some type of other "master plan" as it were to reduce it.

[-] 0 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

You still haven't shared what this "master plan" is that I'm supposed to have...

When did I bring up the deficit in these posts? This is about the rich paying their fair share of taxes. You're the one who's trying to divert the conversation, because you can't come up with a good reason to keep taxes unfairly stacked for those who have the most money.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

You said all you want is for the rich to pay their taxes. Well, for the moment, I am granting you that. Let's say we do that. We have just exposed what a canard this is, because we have much bigger fish to fry than squeezing an extra $50 grand from a hundred thousand people. You don't want to talk about those fish because there will be fewer and fewer places to get the extra money to pay for it, until it finally comes ringing loud and clear that the majority of the total income in the entire United States comes from the middle class, right at about $9.5 trillion out of the $13.3 trillion in total income. THAt, my dear, is where the money is. I'll give you the rich's money. Now let's take yours.

[-] 0 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

I love paying taxes. I actually am fine with paying for the roads that I use, the police protection that keeps me safe, the assurance of a fire department down the street, some financial protection for if I get laid off from work, etc. Some people don't want to pay for their fair share of these services. I do.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Ok, as long as you're OK with us raising your taxes as well, I'm fine with you wanting to raise others. I disagree, but I think you at least are starting to see that if spending is not cut, then taxes are going to have to be raised right down to about the $32k cutoff of the bottom 50%.

[-] 1 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

Every Native American tribe pre-colonization?

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

those tribes had chiefs, shamans, and outcasts.

[-] 1 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

None of these people were rich or poor. The food was shared amongst everyone, everyone had shelters, and everyone had a role in their tribe. And the only outcasts were people who did something really dumb and outside the tribe rules, aka like a criminal in today's society.

[-] 0 points by po6059 (72) 1 year ago

the elderly were left to die, gays were outcasts .

[-] 2 points by flip (4985) 1 year ago

you really don't know much about this do you - what you know has been learned from movies or tv maybe

[-] 1 points by po6059 (72) 1 year ago

no dear,.....i read. it's called senilicide, and the indians did engage in it.

[-] 1 points by flip (4985) 1 year ago

tell me more of what you know about indians - and which ones - very egalitarian societies. and what did the founding fathers learn from the iroquois? i stand by my statement - you know very little.

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

A complete lie.

The elderly were revered and taken care of long after they could no longer hunt, farm or gather. And in many tribes, gays were elevated to the status of an agent of (or at least under the auspices and protection of) particular deities.

[-] 1 points by allarefree (3) 1 year ago

"Sorry for the iciness, but it bugs me when questions about strange Eskimo customs are phrased in the present tense, as if nothing could have changed since the eighteenth century. But yes, in the past some Eskimos did kill old people when circumstances were sufficiently desperate. Pressure from missionaries and national authorities, improving economic conditions, and no doubt evolving notions of acceptable behavior among native peoples eventually brought an end to the practice."

"Senilicide and Invalidicide among the Eskimos" by Rolf Kjellström in Folk: Dansk etnografisk tidsskrift, volume 16/17 (1974/75) "Notes on Eskimo Patterns of Suicide" by Alexander H. Leighton and Charles C. Hughes in Southwestern Journal of Anthropology, volume 11 (1955) Eskimos and Explorers, 2d ed., by Wendell H. Oswalt (1999)

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

No one said anything about Eskimos, did they? Eskimos and American Indians are not the same category. They consider themselves to be very different. The question in the OP was have there been societies in which real egalitarianism was the the way of life. One answer was certain Native Americans. (Xenu was admittedly wrong in saying EVERY Native American tribe, but his answer's validity still holds, as it was virtually every one.) Bringing up Inuits (Eskimos) is not relevant, since they were not provided as an answer to the question. Bringing them up to discredit the answer is dishonest and inaccurate .

The answer is there have been many many cultures in which each member of the group was seen as valuable and no one accrued greater wealth than anyone else. Among these cultures were a variety of Native American tribes and nations. Indigenous Australian, South American and African cultures lived mostly egalitarian lives as well, none of whom placed value on individuals accruing more wealth than other individuals within their cultures. When survival and flourishing is dependent on each and every member of a group, the group as a whole distributes resources. No individual can usurp the common good for selfish gain, as it undermines the cohesiveness, therefore the success, of the group as a whole.

The very survival and evolution of the human species itself was entirely dependent on our abilities and willingness to cooperate, not compete. Selfish competition over resources is associated with primates like Chimpanzees and Baboons not Homo Sapiens. It is why most people on earth view the right wing, including libertardians, as big stupid apes.

[-] -1 points by po6059 (72) 1 year ago

the were revered,.up tp apoint, when they were sick , they were left outside to die, of exposure and/or hunger. gays were not elevated. they were shuned

[-] 3 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 1 year ago

Do you just push the shit out of your asshole and call it truth?

[-] -1 points by po6059 (72) 1 year ago

when they weretsick, when there was a famine, the sick and non productive elderly were abandoned, and left to die. . its called senilicide. thats fact.

[-] 4 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 1 year ago

Hey, moron, I minored in cultural anthropology all the way through undergrad and grad school, and have studied it on and off for 20 years since, and I can assure you that what you are inventing out of whole cloth is nothing but a BIG FUCKING LIE, based on nothing but your thinking your shit is gold.

[-] -1 points by po6059 (72) 1 year ago

it seems you slept through your college years.

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

It seems as though you've been comatose your entire life.

[-] -1 points by po6059 (72) 1 year ago

"cultural anthropology"? LOL.

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

cultural anthropology

noun

the comparative study of human societies and cultures and their development.

Yeah, 'LOL" . Ignoramus. I have scraped crap off the bottom of my shoes that had more intelligence than you.

[-] 1 points by po6059 (72) 1 year ago

" cultural anthropology" LOL. what a waste of time and money.

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

Yup, learning about Native Americans was a waste.

Clearly you didn't and that's why you feel free to post crap about them here that you pushed out of your ass or brian, both of which are identical.

You right wingers are all about flouting your collective ignorance.

[-] 0 points by alexrai (851) 1 year ago

Seems to have been well spent. I realize ignorance is free, but you shouldn't shoot your mouth off if you have no idea what you're talking about.

epa1nter is spot on with his comments, and you on the other hand are reminding me if the savage Englishmen who settled here with their slaves.

[-] 0 points by takim (23) 1 year ago

yes i know, dear, they were called indians by columbus because thats where he thoughte was, India.

[-] 0 points by po6059 (72) 1 year ago

you mean the indians? "native americans",...............P.C. silliness. I'm a "Native American", I was born in here.

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

They are not from India.

[-] -2 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Probably the closest you'll come even though these were relatively primitive societies where food and shelter were of paramount importance. Maybe if we got rid of all our houses and cars, tore down all the office buildings and shopping malls, tossed out the air conditioners, and got back on horses and slept in tents, we'd all be a lot better off.

[-] 2 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 1 year ago

Nah, we can keep all of the modern trappings. What we need is more RESPECT. Respect for those of us who are not exactly like us. Society is all about separating people into different groups. Into haves and have nots. Into rich and poor, gay and straight, Christian and Muslim.

Why are we fighting each other? This is ridiculous! We are all the same. It is time for us to recognize that, respect each other, and stop trying to destroy other people's lives simply because they own less paper than others, or because they have a darker skin tone, or because they love people of the same gender.

[-] -1 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Or vice versa

[-] 0 points by SteveKJR (-497) 1 year ago

Living a primitive life is an "equilizer". No cars, no phones, living in huts, hunting and gathering - it works and is still working today for many tribes.

[-] 0 points by FriendlyObserverB (1871) 1 year ago

You will have to look to the future to find such an instance..

..to a time of equality and fair distribution of wealth.. a time of equal pay .

I have developed such a system that will create a society of equality, a fair balance of wealth, an unlimited budget, a "perfect system.

[-] -1 points by beautifulworld (20415) 1 year ago

Here's a few: The Northwest Kwakiutl, The Mbuti Pygmy, The Australian Aborigines.

[-] 0 points by gforz (-43) 1 year ago

Ok, so far we have pretty much all tribal, primitive societies. I think we've just complicated life too much with all of our modern trappings and the yearning for more and better. It has just lead to jealousy and corruption. It has led to boob jobs and hair replacement. Vanity, greed, corruption. Modern society sucks.

[-] 0 points by beautifulworld (20415) 1 year ago

I won't argue with you there, although, there are some good things about modern society, ie. we eat more, we live longer, we have more creature comforts, things like that. In the end, though, I don't think we are much happier and our daily angst and societal ills probably makes all the "stuff" not worth it.

[-] -3 points by MikeInOhio (13) 1 year ago

Contrary to what the liberal-progressive minions will tell you, there is no such thing. Babylonian, Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Chinese. There is no such thing.