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Forum Post: Social Credit- an idea Occupy can rally around

Posted 2 years ago on April 4, 2012, 7:55 p.m. EST by Javis (35)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Research it! It might be the key to getting the movement actually moving!

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

http://www.bleedingindebt.com/

http://douglassocialcredit.com/

96 Comments

96 Comments


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

It reduces to centralized planning, and eviscerates incentives (although Douglas was a brilliant theorist, in my view he brings too many of his preexisting desires into his formulation, which just seems unworkable). Democratic capitalism (e.g. employee owned companies, co-ops, union shops, partnerships among professionals, etc.) at least retain the incentives that drive progress (and it's a very good model), and it doesn't imagine that a central planner could possibly manage an entire economy (much less an advanced economy like Britain or the United States). Moreover, he exaggerates (albeit somewhat implicitly) the displaced worker problem. Borrowing from some aspects of social democracy could take care of that problem without a leap into the abyss.

I think ultimately the ideal will be a combination of different things. The more conventional model may prove best in capital intensive industries (where workers already enjoy a great deal of autonomy, good pay and benefits, etc.), some aspects of direct democracy (and a greater role for voluntary associations), hopefully a large majority of firms that are worker owned and managed, some aspects of social democracy, etc. It starts by getting rid of corruption and patronage.

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

He wasn't proposing to completely control the economy.

Based on my research, these are my conclusions:

Firstly, we secure the ability to create money from the banks to the government. Then, we obtain all the information on the total costs that all businesses have incurred (domestically), then all the information on the total prices that make up the market (domestically), then the aggregate sum of all wages, salaries, and such paid out by employers (domestically).

Once we have all that information, we then proceed to calculate the difference between total costs in relation to time and total purchasing power of the public in relation to time. We then either:

A. Create money and distribute it to businesses to the point where the amount of money they have to recover in prices is equal to the total amount of purchasing poewr, or B. Create money and distribute it to the consuming public, equally, until the purchasing power of the public is equal to the aggregate prices, or C. A mix of both.

This is not in any way designed to stifle businesses or creativity or inspiration; it is not the purpose or design, even, to control them. The dividends to either business or public would be universal. The accountants handling the money would be punishable by law if they mishandled it (as opposed to banks, who aren't.) People would be liberated from having to work in order to survive, if B or C were implemented.

Certainly, those who worked would be far more rewarded than those who didn't, but not working would not mean your right to live comfortably being taken away. People would still want to pursue those extra rewards, on either the basis of personal preference (simply working a job because you love it) or of gain (being paid comparitively much more to do dirty work, such as sanitation).

People would also be free to improve on the system, to invent labor saving devices which would further free humanity from having to work. It can not be said that the majority of the modern improvements on technology, going back to the Renaissance, or further, were made by those who were working away at a regular job; they had the freedom to invent, in economic liberty. Thus, freeing people from work would ultimately result in people figuring out more ways to free people from more work, which I think we can all agree, is beneficial to a much higher degree than what we have now.

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

If you read please comment on what you think of it :)

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

I noticed that you have posted this a few times. If you want people to look into it, you are going to have to write something more compelling than "research it!"

I actually clicked on all 3 links and I still don't know what social credit is. People are not going to wade through a 20 minute wiki article just find out what it even is.

The only reason why I clicked on it was because I have heard of it before and from what I remember it was a program where the govt funds jobs by printing new money. But all 3 links did a poor job of explaining it. So I still don't know if my memory was correct.

I would try making a post that briefly tells people specifically how a social credit will benefit them and then briefly describe how it specifically works.

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

The New Zealand Soccreds (Democrats for Social Credit) is a party that actually exists, and has some things laid down. So how about: "Social credit will balance the gap between money, or financial credit, and real goods and services, or real credit. The community expressed as the government will create new money in the interests of itself, instead of the banks. Then, it will issue a National Dividend every month to every citizen of the United States, enough to maintain a simple, but comfortable standard of living, as well as lowering prices through a Just Price compensation to businesses. The government will also be able to foot government spending much more effectively; a significant portion of the inability of government services to adequately provide is due to debt and interest on bank loans. This will lead to a stark improvement in the quality of government services, such as healthcare, education, and transportation. A public bank will be created that will issue interest-free or very low interest loans to small businesses and government projects to assist in local development." The website for the NZ soccreds is:

http://www.democrats.org.nz/FAQs/tabid/103/Default.aspx

The FAQs may or may not answer some of your concerns; I'd be glad to hear your response to the summary and the website.

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

Okay, thanks. I'm doing the best that I can, been reading up on it and trying to puzzle through it. I think I have it down good, almost.

[Removed]

[-] 0 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

There are dozens of different economic systems. The US will not change systems, they have a hard enough time just voting for an independent. Number one problem, the people don't realize their power to force economic equality. Stop selling your labor so cheaply and buying products at too high a price. That is the source of economic inequality. We sell our labor low, while we but it back high. Remember buy low sell high? The rich know this well. We do the opposite and we wonder why we are poor.

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

"Stop selling your labor so cheaply and buying products at too high a price. That is the source of economic inequality"

That is not the reason for inequality. Buying high priced things has nothing to do with income inequality. And if you don't sell your labor cheaply, if that is the market value of your labor, you will just never get a job. You can't force companies to pay more for you. They will just hire someone else at whatever the market rate is.

Inequality exists because the system is corrupt. Corruption is using your power unfairly for personal gain. In our economic system, a very small minority use their bargaining power to unfairly take more income than they earned or deserve.

The only way to end the unfair inequality is to end this systemic corruption.

The only economic reason for paying one person more than another is to get them to work difficult jobs or give their max effort. So the only fair way to pay people is based on hard work.

If paying someone 5 times more is all that is needed for income to be an effective incentive, people shouldn't be allowed to get paid 10 times or 50 times or 500 times or 50,000 times more.

Allowing people to take as much as they can and to hell with everyone else is simply not fair.

It is not fair to allow someone to take 50 times or 50,000 times more than others because 1) they don't work 50,000 times harder than everyone else, 2) they didn't earn this money from willing consumers in the market, 3) they shouldn't have the power to force the rest of society into poverty or financial struggle by taking most of the income and leaving everyone else with too little income, 4) there is no economic justification that requires us to pay them that much more, 5) it makes society undemocratic since the amount of income you have determines the amount of freedom and political power you have and a society where the top 3% have 50-50,000 times more freedom and political power than everyone else is not democratic.

The only fair way to allocate income is to pay people based on hard work, not on how much power you wield. Using your bargaining power to take more than that fair amount is the definition of corruption. A system that allows that corruption is the definition of systemic corruption.

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

I disagree that people should only be paid based on employment.

The reason we live in an industrial society is because we wish to save effort, and work less - the machines do the work for us. As technique progresses, more and more time will be saved, and people will have to do less and less work, to obtain the same or better standard of living.

With this in mind, it is easy to conclude then that our objective is not employment, but simply the proper distribution of goods and services, for which money is the main transmission power. Unemployment should be a sign of progress, that is, people don't have to work as hard as they did yesterday; however, since the only method of distributing purchasing power is through wages, unemployment in our current system means starvation.

You will agree that we certainly have (much) more ability to produce things than what is necessary to at least meet a comfortable standard of living. If not, please tell me why farmers burn perfectly saleable crops, or are paid /not/ to grow, and as to why there are homeless families when there are thousands of vacant homes around the country. The amount of work it takes to produce this is much less than the total economic energy of the entire nation; and it should be rightfully so. Machines liberate humanity from the struggle of having to spend almost all of their time making sure they can stay alive, to pursue other things; yet we still have managed to hold onto the 9 hour day, 5 day week work ethic. How come?

Mainly, it is thus: the financial credit of a nation today is controlled by banks. In a stable, free modern society, the financial credit of a nation must reflect the real credit (ie, real things, consumable items, capital, etc.). Currently, this is not so- banks create money and destroy it on a whim. Their business currently is to make money as valuable a commodity as possible, since it is what they make; and the more valuable it is, the more valuable their assets become.

Such it is in the interests of banks then to make loans to businesses, whose assets they take as security. The businesses go through their productive cycle, producing and distributing, paying wages, so forth. Then, their products must be purchased, but the prices are inevitably going to be higher than the total purchasing power distributed to the consumers, since prices are wages + other costs (such as materials, and depreciation). So some goods go unsold, some people go without the goods they need, and the producers make a net loss. So they go back to the banks, and ask for another loan, and the cycle repeats. Eventually, a business will either go bankrupt or it will be on a very tight chain held by the banks. And the people have to seek more jobs, and produce things that they aren't going to buy, just so they can get paid enough to buy the things they DO need; this creates an urgent need to export, export, export, or destroy the wasted goods. As every nation does this, competing for exports, the economic war becomes a military war. And a military war is the best economy booster, because it is the ultimate destroyer: it puts everyone to work creating things they definitely do not need, to destroy all the things that are already made, so they can be further employed in rebuilding it. It is quite inevitable under the current system.

Douglas proposed a few changes that would end this cycle of corruption and aberration from reality. The first was to remove the power of credit creation from banks to the government. Then, what would be done would be to take stock of the entire nation's rough aggregate price to buy everything produced, and the entire nation's rough aggregate amount of purchasing power to buy it with, and basically correct for the gap by creating new money and distribute it to producers so that their prices would be reduced to the level of the total purchasing power, or to distribute money equally as a national dividend to raise the purchasing power of the consumers to that of the total aggregate prices, or perhaps a mix of the two.

It is important to note that this created money, or financial credit, is a representation of the real credit created in the real world. It is not simply spitting money everywhere; it is to represent reality, as it should.

A further thing is that this would liberate people from "having" to work for a living. Consequently, people would eventually find the time to explore themselves, and develop further the ability of the industrial society to save labor. Wars would stop, people would be free to do what they wanted to.

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

"yet we still have managed to hold onto the 9 hour day, 5 day week work ethic. How come? Mainly, it is thus: the financial credit of a nation today is controlled by banks."

I completely disagree with this. It is not supported by evidence. It has nothing to do with banks and credit. I think you are getting swayed by the many, many banking conspiracies that are floating around the internet.

Most of the videos I see online about banking are completely wrong. And there are tons of people who just propagate that nonsense.

The reason why people are forced to work so many hours is because they make so little income they have no choice. And the reason why they make so little income is because we allocate income by bargaining power.

The few people in the top 3%, who have all the bargaining power, take the lion's share of the income produced by the bottom 97%. They take so much of the available income, there is not enough income left over to go around.

If people were fairly paid, if income was allocated based on hard work (like I explain in the comment below) instead of based on bargaining power, the minimum income would be roughly $115k. You can live on a lot less than that, so people would have the choice to work less than 40 hours if they wanted to.

.

"banks create money and destroy it on a whim"

This is not true. Banks do not have the ability to create money.

.

"but the prices are inevitably going to be higher than the total purchasing power distributed to the consumers"

This is just not true. Total expenses (which is the total amount you pay out to consumers as income) will mathematically always equal the total price of all final goods and services for sale. This is just a basic fact of economics.

GDP = Total Price of all final goods and services = Total expenses every business incurred = Total income paid out to everyone

This is further explained here:

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

The only question is whether the total income paid out will be spent by consumers.

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

That is one of the fallacies that have been accepted in our time, that Prices = Income. Expenses from a past economic cycle reappear as new costs in the current one, without the fresh purchasing power to buy it. I can not argue this point sufficiently because I have not understood it enough yet, but when I do, I will come back to you. In the meantime, if you wish, you can read Social Credit by CH Douglas:

http://douglassocialcredit.com/douglas.php#writings

as a free PDF. Gotta scroll down to Books and Pamphlets.

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

"I disagree that people should only be paid based on employment...Machines liberate humanity from the struggle of having to spend almost all of their time making sure they can stay alive, to pursue other things; yet we still have managed to hold onto the 9 hour day, 5 day week work ethic."

I completely agree with the point that you are trying to make here that the goal should be to liberate us from work not to give everyone work.

I advocate democracy and I define a modern liberal democracy as a society whose goal is to use the methods of science to maximize individual freedom. In order to maximize freedom we must minimize involuntary work.

So one of democracy's primary aims is to automate every job that nobody wants to do. I make the case that we can actually eliminate 55% of the jobs we do with existing automation. So we can actually pay today's income and reduce the work week to 20 hours.

You can read more about what I advocate here:

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

You can see how I arrived at eliminating 55% of our jobs with automation and reducing the work week to 20 hours in this comment:

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

And you can read about what democracy means in this comment:

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

However, we cannot automate every job. People still have to work undesirable jobs. So what I'm saying is that the way we should pay people to work the jobs that we have not automated is based on hard work.

Since the only economic reason for paying one person more than another is to get people to work hard, the only fair way to allocate income is to limit differences to only what is necessary to get them to do difficult work and give their maximum effort.

If we determined that paying the top earners 4 times more than the bottom earners was enough incentive to motivate people to work hard, we would be able to pay every worker from $115k to $460k per year. That would make every worker wealthy and would end nearly every social problem we have.

And if we made full use of our automation, we would be able to pay those incomes for working 20 hours per week.

People can live on a lot less than $115k. You can easily live on half that amount. So in our current economy, if income was allocated fairly based on hard work, you would be able to work just 10 hours per week and live comfortably off of $57k per year.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

"Buying high priced things has nothing to do with income inequality." I said buying products at too high a price. Most people don't have a clue if we are paying a fair price. A one Lb. box of cereal contains 10-15 cents of grain, but we pay $3 for it. Are we paying too high a price? A pound of ground beef requires 10 Lbs. of feed grain to produce, so the beef should cost $30 a Lb?

"You can't force companies to pay more for you. They will just hire someone else at whatever the market rate is." People form unions and strike. You can force it, and it must be forced. They will not give it to you without a fight.

"Allowing people to take as much as they can and to hell with everyone else is simply not fair." Completely agree. We just disagree on the method.

"5) it makes society undemocratic" When we spend our dollars, we vote. So does the company, We both determine the value. Economic democracy.

When the employers set wages, they vote. So do we, by accepting or declining. We both determine our value.

Whoever is more selfish has the advantage. Maybe that's why Jesus said it would be easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter heaven. The rich man is so selfish, he holds firmly onto the posessions that prevent him from entering through the narrow gate.

And how will you determine what are equitable wages for 150 million workers?

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

"Most people don't have a clue if we are paying a fair price"

You are going to find just as much income inequality at companies that charge a fair price as you will at companies that don't charge a fair price.

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"People form unions and strike. You can force it, and it must be forced. They will not give it to you without a fight."

I completely agree with you. The only way to eliminate inequality is for the "99%" to form a union and force the change. That is actually what I advocate in the posts I make on this site.

OWS promoted a general strike. But then they did not want to use the general strike to make any demands. That to me is pointless and bizarre.

If OWS claims that wealth inequality is the problem (and I agree that is the #1 problem in the country and in the world by a very, very, very wide margin) then the ONLY solution is to demand that income be allocated more equally. I don't know why they haven't figured that out. It seems like basic common sense.

And I personally think that the only way to get that equality is for workers to form a single union and demand it.

.

"And how will you determine what are equitable wages for 150 million workers?"

Refresh the page and read my comment again, I edited it.

The only economic reason for paying one person more than another is to get them to work difficult jobs or give their max effort. So the only fair way to pay people is based on hard work.

If paying someone 5 times more is all that is needed for income to be an effective incentive, people shouldn't be allowed to get paid 10 times or 50 times or 500 times or 50,000 times more.

We can scientifically determine how much more we need to pay people in order for differences in income to be an effective incentive. People should then not be allowed to unfairly use their bargaining power to take more than that amount.

You can read specifics about that here:

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

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

If I may interject. There is really no way to determine which is harder work and which is not. My advocation for equal pay still stands. The same hourly pay for everyone .. including students. Sure a scientist may bring a lot to mankind, but we fed clothed and sheltered him while he conducted his studies.. what he contributes later can be considered pay back. And if there are physically demanding jobs [ which some people actually enjoy] , we will add more workers to those jobs to evenly distribute the workload.. there is really no job that deserves more pay than any other ..

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

"There is really no way to determine which is harder work and which is not"

You can. Skilled work is harder than unskilled. Physical labor is harder than no physical labor.

.

"My advocation for equal pay still stands"

I advocate that differences be limited to just what is necessary for income to be an effective incentive. If it can be demonstrated that we don't need to pay people more, then everyone would get equal pay.

Since I have done a lot of research on this topic, I can make a pretty compelling case that equal pay could work. And there are a lot of additional benefits that equal pay would bring if we can make that work.

However, I don't really know, it may not work. What I do know, though, is that advocating equal pay is a much, much, much more difficult sell to the public.

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

"Skilled work is harder than unskilled"

Is it really ? someone loading watermelons all day .. would be considered low skilled .. but very hard.. while someone building kitchen cabinets might be considered highly skilled .. but is it really harder than loading watermelons all day .. at the end of the day both workers put in a good days work.. the skilled labor was paid for all his training and chose his profession .. while the watermelon picker may have decided he likes picking watermelons .. people may change their professions , but we will always need watermelon pickers and cabinet makers .. should we pay one more than the other .. it would be unfair.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

Have you watched the TV show "undercover boss"? A CEO of a major company disguises himself as a entry level worker. They often can't perform even the most basic jobs and frequently get fired.

The terms skilled and unskilled are not correct. Manual dexterity is as much a skill as mental dexterity. Those labels help widen the gap in wages just like being in a lower caste versus upper caste in India. If people believe they are worth little, they will accept little.

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

I agree, that is why I advocate that both physically difficult and mentally difficult jobs get paid more.

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

I advocate all time is equal .. even when some jobs require low skills and low difficulty .. picking watermelon is a ten hour day of hard work .. even a brain surgeon could not do it faster. nor a carpenter. all jobs are necessary.. even though priorities may flucuate .. watermelons need to be picked at a certain time .. brain surgery is delicate .. carpentry is less of an emergency .. at the end of the day all workers have bills to pay and lives to live and this is where the equality of life comes into factor. If a worker is willing to work ten hours per day he is just as valuable as any other working ten hours per day in any profession . It is fair. when all training is paid for there is no imbalance of career investment. pursue your dreams , and earn your living like everyone else equally.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

The most physically demanding job I ever had was building horse trailers. I have also programmed CNC waterjet and lasers, but the mental work for me was much easier. I would want 5x the pay to build horse trailers and would probably turn it down.

One mans easy job is anothers most difficult. So in your system I would get paid more for doing what to me is the easier job.

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

You got it backwards. The CNC operator would get paid less. Since that is not a physically or mentally difficult job, it would get paid the $115k. Construction is physically difficult so it would get paid the $230k.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

The CNC operator is a physical job, but not demanding, the CNC programmer is mental job, but how demanding depends on the person. You mean in your system I have to build horse trailers to get the good pay?

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

I argue that mentally difficult jobs should get paid roughly the same as physically difficult jobs and that the 12.3 million jobs in science, computers, engineering, medicine, construction, mining, and farming be considered difficult.

And I argue that difficult jobs should get paid twice the amount as jobs that are not difficult.

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

you see how it becomes an arguement of who works harder and who deserves more.. the only fair solution is equal pay.

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

You are all right! eish There should be a minimum, but comfortable standard that people should be kept at if they choose not to work or to work not highly valued jobs. But there should also still be the regular job system whereby the people who do the important work are paid more than those who simply do little or nothing. The National Dividend part of Social Credit seems to solve this quite amply.

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

Not all work is equal though. I can stand in a field with a hammer, making a hammer motion, or I can stand in front of a nail with a hammer doing exactly the same work, but the latter is the only one that is doing any real benefit to the world. Via that suggestion, an elderly delivery person who only delivers 5 papers in a day will be paid the same amount as a kid who delivers 150 papers.

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

The length of an hour is exactly the same for everyone regardless of their profession.

If someone young works two hours per day compared to someone stronger working ten hours . The pay will reflect the time they work. Elderly may work five or six hours per day. All hourly pay will be equal without discrimination.

The outcome will depend on mankind as a collective.

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

I think we are actually both in agreement that CNC programmers or operators are not difficult jobs and that construction work is.

Certainly there will be grey areas, but that doesn't at all mean it is impossible to do.

I would say that the argument over whether a very small handful of jobs should have been considered difficult would pale in comparison to the argument over the unfairness of tens of millions of people doing undeniably difficult work getting paid the same as others who are doing cushy work.

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

We may have to allocate the cushy work to those who have earned it. ie done some of the hard work in the past.

We can not expect the elderly to do the hard work as we would not expect a strong young man to work in customer service.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

We have a GDP of $15 trillion and a workforce of 150 million. That works out to roughly an income of $100,000 per working person. How would you determine how much a doctor should make versus a construction worker? Let's say they both work the same number of hours and equally hard.

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

Dividing GDP by number of workers is not a useful number since it doesn't make a distinction between part-time and full-time. You want to look at worker productivity instead which is GDP divided by total hours worked.

That gives you $65 per hour which is $135k for full-time workers. All the math is on the post I linked to.

What I advocate is that the law would limit differences in income to only what is necessary for it to be an effective incentive. Then the political process would filter out reasonable proposals that were considered within the law and workers would have to approve it in a national vote.

There is a obviously a lot of grey area. But it certainly is not arbitrary. I would argue that you need to pay people more to do physically or mentally difficult jobs and you need to pay people more in performance based jobs.

I would further argue that mentally difficult jobs should get paid roughly the same as physically difficult jobs and that the 12.3 million jobs in science, computers, engineering, medicine, construction, mining, and farming be considered difficult. I don't think that you will come up with any evidence that says we need to pay them any more than double to get people to do these jobs.

And I don't think you need to pay performance based jobs (entrepreneurs and executives) and the most difficult jobs (surgeons or all doctors and dentists) any more than 4 times more.

But all of this can be tested. And we can come up with reasonable national compensation plans, say, every 4 years that continue to change with the latest labor conditions.

If we paid the top jobs 4 times more, they would get paid $430k, if we paid difficult jobs 2 times more, they would get paid $230k and everyone else would get paid $115k.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

If you pay one worker $430,000, a group of workers will have to earn $295,000 less to compensate.

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

Yes, that is correct. You can see the calculation in paying everyone $115k, $230k and $460k here:

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

[-] 2 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

So the minimum wage workers offset the maximum wage earners? Do you think Bill Gates and Warren Buffet will like this plan?

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

Yes, the money used to increase the minimum earners to $115k comes from lowering the max earners to $460k.

Since Gates and Buffet have benefited more from our corrupt system than anyone else, I would say they would be the most opposed to eliminating the corruption and allocating income fairly based on hard work.

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

What makes a surgeons job difficult, or a dentists ?

I would argue the mentally or physically difficult jobs should by compensated by hiring more people at equal pay. This will minimize/equalize the difficulty.

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

You don't think brain surgery, which requires 10 years of training, is more difficult than customer service, which requires virtually no training?

How would more brain surgeons make brain surgery easier?

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

The medical profession is a world of sharing knowledge with fellow doctors.. medicine is a practicing profession , always learning.. the knowledge and experience accumulates and develops.. but is it really any harder than a mechanic looking under a car hood ? or ten years of customer service.. , or loading watermelons all day ..?

The real question, is , what type of person would be interested in studying brain surgery ? someone in the medical field to begin with .. someone with an interest in medicine..

I would think brain surgery has many unanswered questions .. with the more people involved the more answers will be available .. and even than the results are not gauranteed .. but they are improving ..

What is difficult for one person is a challenging experience for another..

Do you think everyone has the same difficulties , likes, desires, ambitions, interests, abilities, .. do you think we can all be equally trained and do as well as any one else in all professions .. the answer is no .. we all have different interests and abilities .. and it is these interests and abilities that determine what we consider difficult or challenging.

how many brainsurgeons can build a fine set of kitchen cabinets ?

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

I would say that being a doctor is significantly harder than being a mechanic or customer service rep. So it would be fair to compensate them more.

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

I would say the doctor is the easiest of the three .. and than the customer service and last the mechanic.

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

It is probably safe to say that you are the only person on the planet who thinks so! lol

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

What is significantly hard about being a doctor , please enlighten me ?

IMHO , the most difficult job on the planet would be .. doing nothing all day.. ..everyday.. day after day ..after day after day doing nothing ..

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

"Equal pay is a tough battle to win."

It may be an impossible battle to win. But I think you can come up with much better arguments for it than the ones you have been making. However, I think a much more productive battle is to fight for limiting inequality to only what is necessary (which is the amount necessary to get people to do undesirable jobs and to get people to give their maximum effort).

.

"we would have the most evenly distributed wealth system the world has ever known"

And most would say we would also have an unfair system. Because it is unfair to pay the poor guy stuck with the mining job the same as the guy who got the cushy shopping mall job. And it is unfair to pay the guy who is breaking his back to make some company work the same amount as the slacker who hardly puts in any effort at all.

.

"Never again would their be unemployment, poverty, or a shortage of funding. Can you say that about the current 'unequal paysystem'?"

No you cannot say that about our current system. But you can say it about our system if we replaced capitalism with a democratic market socialist system that limited inequality in pay to only what was necessary for pay to remain as an effective incentive which, as you know, I explain in this post.

.

"there is no penalty in your choice of profession in an equal pay system"

And most people would rightly say that not penalizing easy, very desirable jobs with lower pay is not fair to the people who will wind up having to do the hard, undesirable jobs. They would also say that it would likely lead to massive inefficiency since there is no longer any incentive for people to work hard and you will have an army of lazy workers who produce little.

.

"as for easy customer service jobs, they should be allocated accordingly"

And thus begins the corruption that eliminating income inequality was supposed to get rid of. People won't be corrupt over money. They now will be corrupt over the best jobs - the jobs that are the easiest, the most desirable, that come with the best perks, that command the most power, etc.

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

Good luck with all of your plans.

Thank you.

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

"with equal pay .. we have the freedom to choose the career we want based on our own personal choice of interest"

With unequal pay we also have the ability to choose the career we want based on our own personal choice of interest. So I don't think that is an argument for equal pay.

.

"why should someone picking watermelons all day be paid any less than anyone else"

Since picking watermelons is much harder work than, say, being a cashier, I think it is fair to pay watermelon pickers more. Why would anyone work in a coal mine if they can get paid the same working in a mall?

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

Equal pay is a tough battle to win.

But, with equal pay based on time worked , an hour of your time is equal to an hour of my time, than we would have the most evenly distributed wealth system the world has ever known. ..and combined with an unlimited currency (hour-coin), we would turn our economic troubles on it's head.Never again would their be unemployment, poverty, or a shortage of funding. Can you say that about the current 'unequal paysystem'?

have a nice day

ps. With an unequal pay system, you may still beable to choose the profession of your choice, but the pay may be lower than other professions. Where as in an equal pay system what the profession you choose will be at equal pay to all other professions.. there is no penalty in your choice of profession in an equal pay system ..

pps. as for easy customer service jobs, they should be allocated accordingly. ie . we wouldn't expect the elderly to work down in a coal mine ..

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

"Medicine is a continuous study.. of learning. Some would say they enjoy doing the research.. does that make it hard for them ? I think not."

I think you are confusing desirable work with hard work.

Practicing medicine is mentally difficult work. It is certainly more difficult than customer service. But yes, some people enjoy doing that kind of work, I agree. And I agree many would rather be a doctor than a customer service agent.

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

Thank you, and with equal pay .. we have the freedom to choose the career we want based on our own personal choice of interest and be paid equally .. all jobs are necessary .. but why should someone picking watermelons all day be paid any less than anyone else.. ( picking watermelonsall day is " hard work too" )

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

I can understand making the claim that being a customer service agent is the least desirable job. But claiming it is a more difficult job than medicine is just not factually correct. Doctors require a decade of university training, customer service agents require none. Human beings are the most complex thing in the known universe, that is what makes being a doctor hard.

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

This is a very important discussion, "how do we measure hard work ?"

Medicine is a continuous study.. of learning. Some would say they enjoy doing the research.. does that make it hard for them ? I think not.

Mechanic work is physically difficult with complicated mechanical problems and also an on going learning curve.. some enjoy that too ..

Ten years of paid schooling .. there would be line ups .. students would be required to compete for the limited positions with excellent grades , and this will in fact produce the best of the best..

Currently it is those with money that mostly get an advanced education, but not necessarily are they the best of the best at anything.. mediocre on average..

The jobs are different, the skills are different, the conditions are different, and we have a vast selection of people's interests ready and willing to accomodate the many professions ..

difficulty has a lot to do with ones own abilities, and interests. and we are all different in this regard. If you find one profession difficult, try another.

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

If you consider my proposal of all education and training paid for than both construction worker and doctor will receive equal pay.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

if you are saying that society pays for both of their training, then they should receive the same pay. But since the Doctor goes to school for 8 years and the construction worker for 1 year, the cost to society for the doctor is more. The doctor is not producing, but consuming both education and living expenses. The construction worker is producing for 7 years while the doctor produces zero.

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

The doctor is producing valuable skills while training.. what are you suggesting ?

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

He is aquiring skills, but not producing any benefit.

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

The skills he is aquiring are the benefit to society ..

[-] 2 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

The skills provide zero benefit until he starts working.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

To most, the fruit of the labor is eating the fruit, not the labor in aquiring it. Learning is the fertilizer. You can't eat fertilizer, only what it helps produce. The fruit of the student doctor is not his learning, but putting his learning to use.

A student doctor should be paid, he has to exist, but during this time he is a dependent and not a provider.

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

..So if you plant a garden and weed it all summer , all your work weeding and watering and planting has no benefit? It's the fruit of the labor .. that is the benefit.. with the student it is his skills that is the fruit of the labor, with the construction worker it is the building he constructs..

What if the construction worker is building a a bridge and takes five years to complete .. should we not pay him for those five years ?

If it takes a student five years to become a doctor we will pay him for those five years also.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

To most, the fruit of the labor is eating the fruit, not the labor in aquiring it. Learning is the fertilizer. You can't eat fertilizer, only what it helps produce. The fruit of the student doctor is not his learning, but putting his learning to use.

A student doctor has to exist, but during this time he is a dependent and not a provider. Society has to pay his room and board and education with the fruits of others labor.

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

the garden is dependant on the gardener.. and the gardener is dependent on the garden . dependency goes both ways .. as society is dependent on the doctor , so is the student dependent on society.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

This is pointless. Will meet you over at the other post.

[Removed]

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

"People form unions and strike. You can force it, and it must be forced. They will not give it to you without a fight."

This is exactly what " we the people" are trying to force. We want the government to make amendments to the laws that have allowed the uneven accumulation of wealth. Because the wealthy will simply not give up their right to "take all they can"

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

The accumulation of wealth in certain areas is inherent, though. And it removes the benefit, the profit of operating a business. The real problem is that there simply is /not/ enough money in the economy. Consumers do not have the money to pay for the goods; this is caused by prices being total purchasing power distributed /plus/ costs. This must be corrected for. We have the goods, we have the consumers, but we simply don't have the money. And it is fair that producers, capitalists should have more money than we; they are the ones running factories, while we simply need wealth to survive.

The problem is that we don't have the wealth, and consequently, the producers can't sell their goods; it spirals into a cycle where we have to produce things we don't need just so we can buy the ones that we do need.

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

The question you need to thoroughly consider: what is fair?

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

Well consider this: A business needs a lot more money than we do in order to operate. A business needs to pay workers; it needs to buy materials; it needs to pay expenses such as deterioration, and so forth. That is why capitalists inherently should be /handling/ (not keeping, except for capital, which would be used for expansion or upgrading, and profit, but only to a regulated degree) more money than we.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

Will you be taking part in the may day strike?

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

[-]1 points by jrhirsch (602) from Sun City, CA 19 minutes ago

This is pointless. Will meet you over at the other post.

↥like↧dislikepermalink

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

Did you look at the amendments. Many give power to Congress and the States to regulate contribution of funds to candidates and the expenditure of funds intended to influence the outcome of elections.

That's like the fox guarding the hen house. We really need an amendment that bypasses Congress, who can't be trusted to police themselves. Haven't seen one that I support yet.

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

I would participate if the purpose was to strike until a specific list of demands were met that ended the inequality. But that is not what they are using the strike for. It seems they only want to use it to disrupt the system and I see no point in that. In fact, I think it hurts the cause.

If I was in charge of OWS, I would turn it into a significant force within society by doing the following:

  1. Make it very clear that the problem in society is the unfair, unequal allocation of income; it is the root cause of nearly every social problem.

  2. Make it very clear that the only solution to unfair income inequality is to allocate income more fairly and equally by allocating income based on hard work; if we allocated income based on hard work everyone in society would be wealthy and on equal economic and political terms which would solve nearly every social problem we have.

  3. Make it very clear that the only way to change the way we allocate income is for the "99%" to join in a single union and demand it using a general strike if necessary

  4. Make it very clear that the purpose of the OWS movement is to recruit people into this union.

Everyone will now know what OWS is and how it will benefit them in a soundbite form that people can easily grasp. The focus of OWS would then be on teaching people why inequality is a problem, how eliminating it would improve their life and improve society, and how to effectively get others to join the movement so that OWS can be a success.

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

I am protested to number 2: hard work is not the determinant of whether or not one should be allowed to feed, clothe, and shelter themselves. Our industrial society has the ability to take care of that and better with just a fraction of the people currently working with a fraction of the hours needed.

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

As I mentioned in my last comment to you, we cannot automate every job. People still have to work undesirable jobs. So what I'm saying is that the way we should pay people to work the jobs that we have not automated is based on hard work.

Since the only economic reason for paying one person more than another is to get people to work hard, the only fair way to allocate income is to limit differences to only what is necessary to get them to do difficult work and give their maximum effort.

If we determined that paying the top earners 4 times more than the bottom earners was enough incentive to motivate people to work hard, we would be able to pay every worker from $115k to $460k per year. That would make every worker wealthy and would end nearly every social problem we have.

And if we made full use of our automation, we would be able to pay those incomes for working 20 hours per week.

People can live on a lot less than $115k. You can easily live on half that amount. So in our current economy, if income was allocated fairly based on hard work, you would be able to work just 10 hours per week and live comfortably off of $57k per year.

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

I agree. For instance garbage-men and sewer-workers would be highly rewarded, as well as doctors and such. But, capitalists also need to be paid. What use is there in running a business if you don't get a profit for it? I think people would be opposed to just a straight cut of so and so much money. And it still doesn't cover for the fact that banks currently control money, and that the gap between the cost of all production and services and consumer purchasing that still would exist, although doing that would certainly help. What should determine this undesirability pay, so may it be called, is the /quality/, not the quantity, of work one does.

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

You can read more details about what I advocate here:

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

We would use the political process to filter out reasonable, national compensation proposals where differences in income are legally required to be limited to just what our best scientific evidence says is necessary to be an effective incentive and then the worker population votes directly on its approval in a national vote.

.

"capitalists also need to be paid. What use is there in running a business if you don't get a profit for it"

That is correct. In order to allocate income in this way, the second thing we would need to do is use public funds, taken from whatever the natural savings rate is, to invest in new and existing businesses.

This does not mean government does the investing or runs the businesses. Investing will still be done by individually run banks, and they will still invest in entrepreneurs who launch individually run companies. It just means the funds they use will be public funds which come from whatever the natural savings rate is in the economy.

The central bank will make sure there is always enough investment money available to employ the entire workforce. And it will have the power to impose a general production tax on business to make sure there is enough investment funds, even if the natural savings rate is too low.

.

"I think people would be opposed to just a straight cut of so and so much money"

Allocating income based on hard work would enable us to raise the minimum income to $115k. That is more than what 95% of workers currently make. So I would say roughly 95% would be in favor of it since they are getting an increase in income.

.

"What should determine this undesirability pay, so may it be called, is the /quality/, not the quantity, of work one does."

I'm not sure I understand what you are trying to say. But if you are saying the quality of your work is what is important, not just hard work, I would agree.

That is why we will still allocate goods and services through the market and every company must remain financially viable.

If you don't produce quality work, and the company does not correct that, the company will lose customers to the competition and will go out of business. If you do not meet consumer demand and expectations, you will go out of business.

Entrepreneurial and executive jobs will be performance based. The amount of income you get paid will depend on how well your company performs so there is financial incentive to make sure the company you are responsible for performs well.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

The strike does lack focus as much of Occupy does. I would prefer a strike to raise the minimum wage to be it's central issue. $7.25 an hour does not go very far. They should continue the strike by minimum wage workers after May 1st with the the support of other workers who would not buy from any company not raising the wage. This would prevent scabs from breaking the strike. I was just at a Del Taco today and man do those people work! A hell of lot harder than corporate management. They deserve a fair slice of the pie!

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

If you raise minimum wages, though, businesses must charge higher prices or go bankrupt, since they have to recover costs through the agency of prices. This is why I am in support of Social Credit; it corrects for this. It creates the money that is actually needed in order to represent the creation of real wealth, and distributes it to whom it is needed.

[-] 0 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

We've been raising the minimum wage for decades. McD's, walmart, etc. have not gone bankrupt. Strikes raised wages in the past and will work in the future.

Are there any examples of social credit actually taking place anywhere?

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

They've not gone bankrupt because of all the businesses they've absorbed, and because the bankers keep allowing them overdrafts, AND they have been able to successfully export enough to keep themselves afloat.

As to examples... there appear to be a few in Madagascar and New Zealand, I will see if I can find those.

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

There are a lot of little things we can do to improve the system. But a general strike is a big deal. So it will only work if it is trying to make big changes. I think very few people will turn out for a strike to increase the minimum wage.

Unless you want to raise the minimum wage to $115k. That is the kind of significant change that will radically improve society.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

I think the proper way to raise the minimum wage is in steps, $1, $2, or $3 a year, every year at May day. They take our freedoms step by step, we should reciprocate.

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

Not without knowing all the motives.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

The most important part of the strike is to wake people up. When they see economic activity slow way down, employees absent from work, some businesses closing early, people will wonder what is going on. We can't pass amendments unless the people know that we need them.

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

not good enough. I need to know what amendments you want passed, and so will the people "waking up"

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

Major Douglas outlined a whole plan for the painless reformation of the economy; actually, two of them, one for Scotland, and one for Alberta, Canada; Alberta's actually became implemented at one point, and it drastically reduced the debt of that province, along with raising the standard of living. However, the legislation was shortly thrown out by the Mackenzie King administration at that time.

If you wish I can direct you to the Albertan revisions.

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

I completely agree. You can't embark on a public relations and ad campaign if you don't even know what you are publicizing or advertising.

Unfortunately, OWS just seems like a group that doesn't know what they are doing.

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

This is a very important point OWS needs to understand.. even unions have a list of demands when they strike.. wtf is OWS thinking ? lets just go on strike , stop working everybody .. until until until.................we figure why exactly we are striking ?

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

It just perpetuates the idea that OWS is nothing more than a bunch of clueless kids that are only interested in mayhem. They are not interested in solving anything, they just want to rage against the machine.

I explain what I would do if I was in control of OWS in this comment:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/social-credit-an-idea-occupy-can-rally-around/#comment-697189

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

Yes , I read the comment. And I agree , we need focus. to be asked to blindly follow an organization with no definite goals .. I will not do.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

We need the people awake first to decide what is passed.

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

I won't participate.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

I originally felt the same way. Kind of a blockade action, partially shutting down the economy. But that is what all strikes do, they shut down a business until they reach a fair agreement. This strike will only wake people up. If they remain asleep, our amendments will never pass.

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

you have no amendments.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

There are many amendments in Congress, and among the Occupy movement. Many limiting corporate speech, others restricting campaign finance contributions, others with term limits. We need to distill these down into one or two that will have wide support.

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

sorry many amendments is still not an answer.. we need to see those amendments you are advocating.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

Here are a few, but there are many more.

http://movetoamend.org/other-amendments

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

Yes, but the people need to be taught this. Only then can we actually do anything about it. And this philosophy of a policy seems to be the best explanation of the economic system AND a solution that I have seen. One of the solution suggestions for localities is found here:
http://www.michaeljournal.org/localmoney.htm