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Forum Post: The Occupy movement is wrong about the rich

Posted 2 years ago on May 22, 2012, 6:18 p.m. EST by Misaki (893)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

http://jobcreationplan.blogspot.com/

Is it ethical to sell to someone who made a lot of money in an unethical way? If you have difficulty answering this question, you are guilty of two mistakes. The first is the assumption that society will allow unethical ways of making money to exist, instead of outlawing those activities as soon as they are shown to be harmful. The second is the assumption that the buyer in a transaction benefits more than the seller, and that the only way to reverse this arrangement is to be dishonest.

This is a result of the culture in which people are brought up. People in the lower half of the income distribution—of any country—tend to associate with others of similar economic status, and have more sensitivity to scarcity and wanting something but not being able to afford it. This causes them to assume that the best way to help other people is to offer a less expensive product, and that the best way to increase sales is by decreasing prices.

People in the upper half of the income distribution have fewer unsatisfied needs and are more likely to assume that products will naturally be sold for significantly more than their production cost, because they buy at the upper end of the quality scale or enjoy a sense of status from their purchases which can only come from product scarcity. They are more likely to charge and accept higher prices in the normal course of business.

The first group may feel that avoiding competition based on price is implicitly dishonest, while the second group is likely to accuse the first of ignoring price tags and purchasing things they obviously don't need at their level of income. Either group might feel that the economy would be better off if everyone adopted one or the other spending philosophy, but the truth is that neither of these strategies is stable by itself.

If everyone tried to compete on prices, some people would still end up wealthier which would create demand for higher quality products. If everyone tried to compete on quality, some people would inevitably become poor from spending their money on necessities which would give someone an opportunity to gain market share by selling at a lower price. It is unrealistic to think that people will lower the prices they sell at if it causes them to lose money or to pick the more expensive of two comparable products just because they have money to spare.

This applies to corporations as well. Some people think that corporations should be nice and pay significantly higher than market wages instead of giving their profits to shareholders who are already rich, but if more corporations did this it would just mean that their employees would accept higher prices for things they bought, meaning that those profits would just end up in the pockets of the shareholders of whatever corporations chose not to do this. The choice of the owners of a corporation to redistribute profits back to employees, or to retain employees whose jobs are unnecessary, is just like the one in the classic game theory problem of "The Prisoner's Dilemma" [http://www.smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=1899], but instead of playing against a single opponent who you must trust not to defect you would be playing against millions of opponents all of whom have the opportunity to defect for a large profit.

The third option which would help employees of a corporation without giving the shareholders of other corporations a chance to defect is work conservation [http://occupywallst.org/forum/work-conservation-is-the-solution-to-the-global-re/], but that is not actually the main focus of this text.

The reason for the above explanation of why giving things away for free or nearly free does not always help the economy [http://www.smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=2413] is to lead to the point that there are many people who could be richer than they are, who are just not interested in doing so. They might think that raising prices is wrong or unaware that it can be an effective strategy, or they might like the customers they currently work with. Maybe they don't have anything they feel they need to buy. There are many flaws in using the amount of wealth someone has as a standard to estimate the amount they could have if they wanted to be rich.

But people still support the idea that becoming rich is an honest and admirable goal, not only because it is less risky and less costly to society, but also because it allows you to influence the perceptions others have about how you see yourself as being viewed by giving a commonly accepted standard of achievement with no upper bound on the limits of measurement. The key point is that you may want to make yourself appear to be more than you really are or less than you are, because this ambiguity can serve both as a test for the accuracy of thinking of others and as an excuse for your behavior when someone fails that 'test'. Being able to manipulate your perceived self-worth to match that of someone else is a valuable social skill, and expressing greater or lesser acceptance of the accuracy of income to measure ability is one way to accomplish this.

However, deviations from the common standard are based on the idea of alternative, more accurate ways of demonstrating personal ability and discernment of benefit to society. These standards can sometimes come in almost unrecognizable forms if society is perceived to be inherently evil which may cause people to feel they must embrace the use of the same strategy in order to survive, but they are always intended to lead ultimately to a positive result for both the individual and society. In cases where no agreement can be reached about what standard would best help society and the individual, such as with the issue of whether to raise prices or to lower them or for many political topics, conflict itself can be seen as positive by encouraging people to find a better solution which resolves that conflict.

This leads to the final point. Money as a standard of achievement can be replaced, not by an idea which can be easily expressed as a single number, but by the more complex and more accurate standard of whether you are able to prevent benefit to society from conflicting with your own goals. Some people may feel the desire to become rich and compete within the social and economic circles of the wealthy, but this concept of success should only be one among many and should not lead to harmful economic effects for the rest of society. Work conservation [http://occupywallst.org/forum/work-conservation-is-the-solution-to-the-global-re/] is essential not only to eliminate unemployment which results from the desire to become rich or show off status by earning and working as much as possible, but also to directly refute the idea that everyone wants to become rich as their personal idea of success.

There is nothing wrong with being rich, or part of the top 1% of income. Unemployment and the rise in inequality are everyone's fault and it is therefore everyone's responsibility to support the solution to these problems.

Fruits

I think it helps to add a practical example. Take the iPhone, which costs $650~850, half or more of that being gross profit. People might assume that since Apple is a nice company, they keep prices low to make their products more affordable to consumers and pay their workers a substantial amount of the production costs. But Apple's profit margins are much higher than its competitors because it doesn't need to keep prices low, and just sells for maximum profit. Much of that profit is sitting in tax havens outside the US. Apple currently has over $100 billion in cash and other relatively liquid financial assets.

People might buy an iPhone or another of Apple's products while knowing the high profit margins, or even because of its price. If it forces them to make other sacrifices in their budget you might say they are making themselves appear to be "more than they are" if they flaunt their new item. Yet if appearing "more than you are" is seen as a negative thing because it implies a low true value, possession of an iPhone is actually making yourself seem "less than you are" if you are aware that trendiness has no intrinsic value and are just trying to deter people who are prejudiced against iPhone users.

Now take the knowledge of Apple's profits and combine it with an analysis of how much of your money comes from the rich vs how much goes to the rich [http://occupywallst.org/forum/title/]. If you sell to poor people, you can conclude that buying an iPhone contributes to unemployment and so possession of one is evidence either that you don't care about unemployment or you don't understand the economic consequences of your actions. This identifiable direct consequence to society has the effect of resolving the uncertainty such that an iPhone would unambiguously make you appear "less than you are" if you think that unemployment is an important problem, unless you really are rich enough that you don't have anything else to spend money on.

But maybe you think that having an iPhone is more important than unemployment. You would then be able to attract the interest of other people who feel the same way.

Now consider what it means if you don't have an iPhone. Maybe it's because you don't want your money to go to corporate profits! This makes you look like a nice person, when maybe you're just too poor to afford one; not having an iPhone can therefore make you appear "more than you are", the same result that owning an iPhone led to. Meanwhile, since it would still help employment to buy an iPhone if you're rich, you can also pretend you're a nice person—even if you're not—if you're rich by buying an iPhone which could make you seem "more than you are". And conversely, someone who cares so much what other people think of them probably has low self-esteem, so people might think you appear to be "less than you are", and actually emotionally vulnerable and approachable (despite being rich).

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120 Comments


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[-] 3 points by stevebol (1269) from Milwaukee, WI 2 years ago

You're dreaming Misaki. These are scary economic times and a real leader like FDR or Eisenhower would raise taxes on the rich and start construction projects to get through these times. We're on our own and you just have to face reality. Create your own job.

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

Actually, food stamps boost employment more than construction projects, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

http://www.cbo.gov/sites/default/files/cbofiles/ftpdocs/112xx/doc11255/figure2.png

(That chart is just for short-term effects but infrastructure is still a bit behind in the long term as well.)

Oops, food stamps are in this chart by Moody's.

[-] 2 points by stevebol (1269) from Milwaukee, WI 2 years ago

Construction jobs aren't going to happen anyway. Obama and Romney aren't exactly Eisenhower or FDR. As far as food stamps it's a great program. At least the government has enough sense to do that. I get the feeling that the party is over and we have to make our own way. Rich people finally found someone dumb enough to believe their shtick- "If you just lower my taxes I can create jobs." The Tea Party are the first people in history dumb enough to believe that line. They're relentless and they're winning election.

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

The Tea Party are the first people in history dumb enough to believe that line.

No it started in the 1980's remember?

The difference between FDR and Obama is FDR began with "small" government and made it big, which reduced unemployment but it didn't totally go away until WWII. Obama began with "big" government from mostly automatic spending (social security/disability/medicare etc. didn't go down but tax revenues did) which only left a little room to make it larger before people protested, as they did with the Tea Party and resistance to increases of the debt ceiling.

This resistance may be partly/mainly due to stupidity about where money goes and so on (the way that people think the US spends much more on foreign aid than it really does) but this is the reality we have to deal with.

And it isn't necessarily even a bad thing. If we agree that we need to effectively go to war against people who, due to stupidity or malice, stand in the way of helping the unemployed and poor then we should be able to accomplish the goal. This resistance to tax increases is not even necessarily a bad thing because despite that OWS calls for assistance to the poor, we are aware that welfare can be abused and giving people jobs is just better.

I view OWS's actions up until now as "we are trying to cooperate. Will you cooperate?" ...the ostensible 'enemy' is the rich, but the true enemy is the "traitors" who don't see high unemployment as an important problem. Until now we have been giving those "traitors" a chance to join the cause, but I propose that we have waited long enough.

[-] 2 points by stevebol (1269) from Milwaukee, WI 2 years ago

The Tea Party has roots back in the late 50's but they had a different name then. The Reagan era as you point out was a turning point but Reagan couldn't get a ticket to a Tea rally now. They're that crazy. Economics isn't my forte Misaki. I look at everything from a psychological point of view. It's what I understand the most.

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

I will agree with that at least. There are even studies (analyzing voting records) that show how the 'left' and 'right' converged somewhat, but then the 'left' only became slightly more radical while the 'right' became much more radical.

[-] 2 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

This is ridiculous!! Why can't you all get it through your thick skulls that this present era of so-called industrial and alleged technological advances is about to burst wide open! You keep looking at things as they were...yet, you fail to realize that all across the globe you are being given the illusion that they might still be, and will never fade away!! While your poor suffer and die in the streets, on the corners, in the breadlines, your rich feed off of them and perpetuate a fake decadent lifestyle that even the most ardent Sci Fi observers find hard to believe really make them happy or will even continue to exist!! Once you realize that this whole scenario is being chipped away, bit by bit, dollar by dollar, Euro by Euro, nation by nation, family by family, person by person, then perhaps you all can look at the fact that this imaginary grid that personifies the illusionary economical future to be maintained is just that...imaginary!!! You Dummies better learn how to save yourselves and stop looking for some oppressive ego maniac Dudes and Dudettes to come along and save your poor asses!! It ain't gonna happen, and Frankly my Dears, THEY DON'T GIVE A DAMN!!!! What are you gonna do when the oil stops, the truckers quit, and the food stores close? Get real!!! Does anyone know how to make clothes???

[-] 1 points by Puzzlin (2898) 2 years ago

It's the two minute warning, throw a hail mary, and kiss your sweet a&& good-bye. (This was only a drill, in the case of an actual or real emergency, you would have been instructed to put your head between your knees to await further instructions on how to kiss it...)

LMAO

The Puzzler

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

They haven't read CFN.

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

While your poor suffer and die in the streets, on the corners, in the breadlines

If you are poor, it's because you want to be or because you're stupid.

This is a democracy. If unemployment is such an urgent problem, why don't poor people force their friends/relatives to vote to fix it?

Inequality is not new; it has been steadily increasing for more than 30 years.

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

This is a democracy. If unemployment is such an urgent problem, why don't poor people force their friends/relatives to vote to fix it?

The USA is not a democracy, it is a representative republic. We don't vote on individual issues like unemployment but vote for a representative we hope shares the same views as ours on unemployment and hopes that he will vote to correct the problem.

You can see how this leads to failure quickly. The representatives promise everything, get voted in, and fail to deliver on their promises. This has been going on for 100 years.

The wealthy own our representatives.

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

a representative we hope shares the same views as ours on unemployment

Basically everyone agrees that unemployment is a problem. People just have differing views on how to fix it, or what is acceptable in the attempt to fix it.

After all, Obama did spend $800 billion specifically to fix unemployment, but that just showed that unless we increase taxes spending more was not the solution.

You can see how this leads to failure quickly. The representatives promise everything, get voted in, and fail to deliver on their promises. This has been going on for 100 years.

The 2010 elections were notable because of the "Tea Party" which demanded lower taxes/no tax increases and that was exactly what they got. By far a majority of the country did not support an increase of the debt ceiling last year, even though without such an increase the government would have had to drastically cut spending, leading to many government employees without a job (or at least an income).

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

Basically everyone agrees that unemployment is a problem. People just have differing views on how to fix it, or what is acceptable in the attempt to fix it.

No, there is a very, large sector that believes that unemployment is a problem of the unemployed. They are believed to be lazy, leeches of the system, with no ambition to get a job.

I'll let you figure out who that sector is. You are living in a fantasy world.

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

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/08/05/us/politics/20110805_Poll-docs.html

15. Which of these should be the higher priority for the nation right now -- cutting government spending or creating jobs?
Cutting spending 26 (Mar 2011) 29 (Aug 2011)
Creating jobs 63 (Mar 2011) 62 (Aug 2011)
Both(vol.) 11 8
DK/NA 1
3/18-21/11 CBS 8/2-3/11

Your "very large sector" is about 30% of the population, which is indeed large but not compared to people who think the government should focus on jobs... as long as that job creation does not require more government spending. (by 42% in favor of more spending, 52% opposed.)

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

When less than half of the registered voting population actually votes, 30% becomes a much greater force.

To answer your question, job creation has to come first. Cutting spending on the Federal level during a recession is economic suicide.

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

Then have you voted in support of work conservation, which would create jobs without more government spending?

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

No. I'm a subscriber to MMT. I believe that with fiat currency Federal spending increases private sector savings. This is the way demand will be generated which will encourage hiring.

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

In that case, people (52% of the population) who oppose more government spending are what you should see as the obstacle to job creation.

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

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

True, in the simplest terms. Not all Federal spending carries the same weight as far as jobs creation goes.

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

The CBO and Moody's have analyzed what those weights are.

http://www.cbo.gov/publication/21227 http://www.economy.com/dismal/article_free.asp?cid=198972

And 56% of the US population thinks that higher taxes and government spending would lead to more economic growth (the same conclusion you can reach from the CBO data, since taxes have less effect than spending options that cause more money to go to the poor). The fact that significantly less than 56% of the US population wants this option to be taken is the justification that OWS can use for (non-physical/violent) action.

[-] 1 points by RayLansing (99) 2 years ago

You realize how limited of a sample size that poll is right? "All trends are from New York Times / CBS news poll unless otherwise noted"

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

From the related article:

The growing fears about the economy — amid a sinking stock market and warnings that the nation risks sliding back into recession — were reflected in the nationwide telephone poll, which was conducted Tuesday and Wednesday with 960 adults and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points.

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 2 years ago

The poor can help fix their problems, but the issues are systemic and voting isn't going to solve it (when did it solve anything?), in any case, the point I want to make is that our money systematically makes us take from out neighbor to pay back the bank (at least money that functions like ours will).

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

but the issues are systemic and voting isn't going to solve it (when did it solve anything?),

1930's, the "new deal".

in any case, the point I want to make is that our money systematically makes us take from out neighbor to pay back the bank (at least money that functions like ours will).

This was because people bought into a housing bubble expecting the trend of rising prices to continue, and the government allowed the bubble to exist because the additional spending (from home equity loans on the portions of mortgage people had paid off or from rising house values) lead to "growth" and higher employment after the previous recession of ~2001.

We could have adopted work conservation back then and averted the housing bubble except that no one had thought of the idea yet.

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 2 years ago

The New Deal helped people, but did not fix the systemic issues derived from our money (it was symptomatic relief), if it had, the Depression would have looked like a slow recovery and we would be living in a very different economic structure, of course we know the depression was a bunch of ups and downs and false hope until WWI started. WWI contributed more towards getting the economy right (redistribution of wealth via paying soliders and giving them educated futures). To go further on to my voting doesn't solve anything, I am not saying that it cannot do good (or bad). But that it doesn't solve the root causes. Its first aid, we may not make it to the hospital without it, but stopping the bleeding is just the first part of healing a wound.

My key point is however that a lot of the issues we face, we face because we have one type of money worldwide, and all of it is loaned out at interest, and generated by fiat, not to mention it is designed to be a scarce medium of exchange, rather than a plentiful one (or one designed so there is always just enough money, never more or less). We can put mechanisms into that system to help it self correct, but its still a flawed machine that will inevitably break down due to its own nature.

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

Importantly, at the end of WWII there was the GI Bill which prevented soldiers from flooding the job markets like at the end of WWI in many countries. So "more education" was a very important difference between before WWII and after it, as was lower income and wealth inequality (partly from wartime inflation and high marginal taxes). I think rationing also contributed to it because people got used to smaller amounts of 'normal' products and lower qualities, so they probably felt less need to purchase expensive "brands" once rationing ended.

To go further on to my voting doesn't solve anything, I am not saying that it cannot do good (or bad). But that it doesn't solve the root causes.

I completely agree. Work conservation does address the root cause, which is simply increase of efficiency without a similar increase in the diversity of products a family purchases so money from working full-time just goes to brands.

If we just vote for more socialism, eventually the pendulum will swing back the other direction because welfare leads to fraud and abuse (see food stamp fraud right now... or more government employees just leads to bureaucracy), but giving people jobs from work conservation would not lead to those problems and would truly be addressing the root issue.

I am not quite sure I understand your last paragraph or the problem you are trying to point out there.

I should also link to this thread: http://occupywallst.org/forum/prelude-to-war-need-confirmation-from-ows/

[-] 2 points by JoeW (109) 2 years ago

Ok, I see what you are getting at with work conservation. But I don't really think that our monetary system is conductive to the behavior, though it could be forced. Local demurrage based currencies however would help this issue, one of the cases that was brought up in the book New Money New World about a period of time called the Middle Middle Ages showed that they had naturally occurring work conservation going on in their society. The system in place helped to cause everyone to have nearly 1/3 of the year off work (though I guess organizing festivities is still kind of work, its definitely economic activity).

We can't force work conservation though, prohibitionary responses do not work effectively or efficiently. A systemic approach is better, rather than a symptomatic one. Though work conservation would certainly help, the same way the New Deal helped (perhaps more, probably more, but possibly less if it falls flat for example it would be counterproductive).

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

I have been arguing on this thread which advocates a demurrage-type system... after seeing you mention "demurrage" in a different thread I also looked it up on Wikipedia to learn that it is actually currently in use in an area of Germany.

And just like I argued in that thread, demurrage is not really much different from inflation. The Wikipedia article suggests as well that persistent inflation since the 1930's was inspired by the arguments of the person who described the benefits of demurrage. [Note: if you look at a graph showing historical inflation in the US it was pretty balanced between periods of inflation and deflation before the 1930's.] The main differences are just price 'stickyness' (in both directions, influenced by consumer perceptions of prices), practical concerns with demurrage in a national currency, and practical concerns with the effect of inflation on low-denomination coins and notes.

In the linked thread, the author emphasizes putting a cap on interest rates for loans but we could do that with the inflation-based system as well (with the same arguments not to in both cases). I think it would be better to avoid using either system, but ever since the 1930's economists and governments have relied on inflation as a way to encourage spending and job creation so I doubt inflation will go away if we don't adopt work conservation.

We can't force work conservation though, prohibitionary responses do not work effectively or efficiently.

I actually considered comparing cheaper health care costs (if people were forced to accept lower prices through price caps, the way most other countries control health care costs) to the prohibition of alcohol.

But the nice thing about work conservation, as opposed to a lower work week, is that working less would be entirely optional and companies would be happy if someone wanted to work more, the way that they often (but not always) like when salaried employees work unpaid overtime. This just shows that I am not describing work conservation very well.

The key point is that for work conservation to work there must not be any prejudice or bias against people who choose to work less, so not only must a business give the option but the entire management chain must understand that it helps the nation (so people are not passed up for promotion because management thinks they're "selfish"). Since work conservation would help the nation and in many cases would also help the business as well by giving incentives to eliminate unnecessary bureaucracy, this is just a perception problem and by being too stupid to take the effort to understand this, conservative people are harming the nation but it will take effort to prove this (by showing that unemployment and inequality really are important problems that the "nice" portion of the 1% cannot fix by themselves).

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 2 years ago

Inflation is really a different concept than what I am getting at, which is more closely related to interest.

Demurrage type currencies do not encourage a concentration of wealth. Interest bearing currencies do.

The greater equality of position spawned by this would be the contributing factor in reducing the amount of work that people are expected to do. Obviously this needs to be accompanied by a cultural shift, but that shift has a much higher probability of happening under a demurrage currency than an interest bearing one.

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

Demurrage type currencies do not encourage a concentration of wealth. Interest bearing currencies do.

Interest-bearing currencies do not encourage holding cash in most cases any more than demurrage, except when liquidity is needed for some reason (like financial leverage) but that would also apply to demurrage. Interest comes from loaning money to other people or the government; the only way to prevent this from being profitable under demurrage as well would be to cap interest rates on loans (as suggested in the linked thread by someone else).

But if you don't want people to make money by making loans, we can do that now as well even without demurrage. And since there are many other kinds of assets you can store wealth in, like stock shares, you would need to limit the returns on those to below the demurrage rate as well if you want to prevent people from holding wealth.

And if returns on investing stocks are always lower than the demurrage rate from the person you bought the stocks from, they just won't sell the stocks. Demurrage is really not that different from inflation + seigniorage... and while high inflation or a high demurrage rate might limit saving of wealth there would be many poor and middle-class people who might be upset as well if they couldn't save for the future without having that money decrease in value. Inflation is very popular among economists but just as unpopular among normal people; the "tax" part of demurrage would likely be just as unpopular as inflation and there is no guarantee that people will see higher velocity of money or government spending as making up for that.

[-] 2 points by toukarin (488) 2 years ago

Its not about the rich being nice or not nice. They can be whatever and whoever they want to be so long as they are not allowed to subvert democracy.

No more corporate financing of politicians or legalized insider trading for politicians.

No more tax breaks for companies and individuals who have outsourced jobs.

No more laws which take away our civil liberties.

None of the above has anything to do with them being nice or not nice. It has nothing to do with their earning/spending philosophy or power.

You say raising prices or reducing salaries is a valid strategy... sure... but how can companies justify raising costs faster than wages or raising costs while cutting wages? Especially when the top management gets pay increases in the same period which are orders of magnitude higher?

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

No more corporate financing of politicians or legalized insider trading for politicians.

No more tax breaks for companies and individuals who have outsourced jobs.

No more laws which take away our civil liberties.

Great ideas! (For the second, see Apple for example: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/29/business/apples-tax-strategy-aims-at-low-tax-states-and-nations.html?pagewanted=all)

You say raising prices or reducing salaries is a valid strategy... sure... but how can companies justify raising costs faster than wages or raising costs while cutting wages? Especially when the top management gets pay increases in the same period which are orders of magnitude higher?

"Raising prices", for most people, means having a higher salary because what they sell is labor (often skilled labor, but still labor).

Companies have no reason to offer higher than market wage; but if people work less, market wage goes up for everyone.

This was summarized in this post by the former chief economic advisor (voluntarily resigned) to the vice president of the US: http://jaredbernsteinblog.com/slack-attack/

[-] 2 points by toukarin (488) 2 years ago

You miss the point.

Why are many of the CEO's and Banking executives who are responsible for much of the ills plaguing their own companies still eligible for multimillion dollar pay packets and bonuses (the increment of which has consistently been orders of magnitude greater than that of the rank and file)? All this at the same time they are either reducing benefits or handing out pay-cuts to their own employees (if not laying them off entirely).

By their own logic, they should not be accepting bonuses or raises and miscellaneous perks since it hurts the bottom line. Why are the rank and file the only ones making sacrifices in the name of corporate efficiency?

Consider Bank of America trying to charge a debit card fee. They were trying to do this in-spite of laying off thousands of workers. By colluding with other major bans to roll out their own debit card fees in staggered time increments, they were attempting to manipulate the market rate as it were. I believe they were citing regulations as a cause for them wanting to add more fees. Why should any regulation that only binds them to do what they are already SUPPOSED to be doing cost them more money?

What about insurance companies raising premiums at rates consistently greater than wage growth or inflation? A 9% jump in 2011. This at a time when the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that the health insurance employer cost index was the lowest it had been in a decade.

Consider the tax breaks that were enacted for job creation. Companies will not pay above market rate and market rates only fall with high unemployment. With reduced income (in real terms) there is no way consumers will spend more and thus no reason for companies to invest more. They just sit on the money they gain from the breaks while the economy staggers and later claiming it as bonuses and the like.

Growing profit without a growing consumer base is impossible.

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

By their own logic, they should not be accepting bonuses or raises and miscellaneous perks since it hurts the bottom line. Why are the rank and file the only ones making sacrifices in the name of corporate efficiency?

I recently read that, in fact, shareholders in a company were voting not to allow executive bonuses for some company. But as the size of corporations increase (globalization trend), the disparity between CEO pay and worker pay is a bit inevitable. If workers were actually paid a decent amount this wouldn't be important (say, 1 CEO paid 300 times normal, vs 100,000 workers. Only 0.3% of total pay, not really significant).

Stop expecting corporations to be "nice". Some corporations will treat their customers or their employees poorly; if there were other jobs/competitors available, people could then quit from working at that company or as a consumer, choose the competitor.

Job creation through work conservation (people who choose to work less because they can afford to do so) pretty much fixes everything.

What about insurance companies raising premiums at rates consistently greater than wage growth or inflation? A 9% jump in 2011.

A tangent, but see here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/why-an-mri-costs-1080-in-america-and-280-in-france/2011/08/25/gIQAVHztoR_blog.html

Health insurance companies only have a 2% profit margin. See here for how to control health costs without price caps (which is how other countries keep costs down).

Consider the tax breaks that were enacted for job creation.

The Congressional Budget Office (and Moody's) analyzed this. Tax breaks do increase GDP and employment, but not as much as other measures: http://www.cbo.gov/sites/default/files/cbofiles/ftpdocs/112xx/doc11255/figure2.png

[-] 1 points by toukarin (488) 2 years ago

I recently read that, in fact, shareholders in a company were voting not to allow executive bonuses for some company. But as the size of corporations increase (globalization trend), the disparity between CEO pay and worker pay is a bit inevitable. If workers were actually paid a decent amount this wouldn't be important (say, 1 CEO paid 300 times normal, vs 100,000 workers. Only 0.3% of total pay, not really significant).

Not just 1 CEO. Upper management as a whole. That and the perks and benefits they enjoy or simply take for granted. Like good health insurance.

Stop expecting corporations to be "nice". Some corporations will treat their customers or their employees poorly; if there were other jobs/competitors available, people could then quit from working at that company or as a consumer, choose the competitor.

Not expecting them to be nice but also not expecting the to be allowed to get away with attempts at manipulating the market by means of implicit collusion. Customers DID beat back the measure.

Job creation through work conservation (people who choose to work less because they can afford to do so) pretty much fixes everything.

Not many of those left in this country. Its called the Middle Class Squeeze.

Health insurance companies only have a 2% profit margin. See here for how to control health costs without price caps (which is how other countries keep costs down).

Your data is old. 2011 Profit margins were in the region of 8% or upwards. To be sure, the Pharma and Healthcare Providers are also to blame.

The Congressional Budget Office (and Moody's) analyzed this. Tax breaks do increase GDP and employment, but not as much as other measures:

Only works with small businesses at best. An article from the Kellog School of Management website: http://insight.kellogg.northwestern.edu/index.php/Kellogg/article/big_tax_breaks_beget_small_investments

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

Not just 1 CEO. Upper management as a whole. That and the perks and benefits they enjoy or simply take for granted. Like good health insurance.

Pretty much always been that way. If you want it to change, support work conservation since full employment is the best way to boost wages.

Though I recently rediscovered this page and found it interesting: http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_are_the_highest_paying_jobs

CEOs are second to physicians in their average pay.

Not many of those left in this country. Its called the Middle Class Squeeze.

And yet in 2010, 76% of employees said they would be willing to take a pay cut while working the same amount.

Your data is old. 2011 Profit margins were in the region of 8% or upwards. To be sure, the Pharma and Healthcare Providers are also to blame.

Do you have a link to support this claim?

Only works with small businesses at best.

The models used by the CBO likely included the difference in profits between corporations and small businesses. But also see these poll results:

A majority of the population is opposed to government spending to create jobs, and 64% would choose cutting government spending over raising taxes on corporations despite that only 4% think that corporations use savings from tax cuts to hire more workers.

[-] 1 points by toukarin (488) 2 years ago

Full Employment would be great. We would not be having this conversation if we managed to get it done.

Pay for physicians is probably better than some CEO's. But they don't get stock options or multimillion dollar bonuses every year. My brother in law happens to be a cancer specialist and while what he makes is surely above average, it is certainly not even in the same ballpark as the CEO's of the large firms.

|| And yet in 2010, 76% of employees said they would be willing to take a pay cut while working the same amount.

They fear for their jobs and worry about the unemployed who might be willing to take that paycut and their job.

As for Health Insurance, here is the article I was referencing: http://www.nationaljournal.com/healthcare/report-health-insurance-profits-rise-despite-health-care-reform-20120105. There are more, http://thelundreport.org/resource/flagging_economy_doesn%E2%80%99t_dampen_health_insurers%E2%80%99_excessive_profits They are not the only villains in the healthcare story, But they are part of the problem.

I dont want the government to spend to create jobs. Heck I dont want THEM to create jobs at all. I want them to create an environment which is conducive for others to create jobs here rather than elsewhere. If that means making it more expensive for companies to go overseas or to bring products in from overseas, then by all means... they should do that.

I want the government to not spend AND at the same time take the appropriate taxes from the rich and CUT the deficit instead of growing it. Heck I don't even want them to "raise" taxes on the rich. All I want them to do is close the damned loopholes and make it more difficult to move money to and from tax havens.

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

A high income makes it possible to invest in the stock market though. And, since if it was easy to pick a well-performing hedge fund manager then everyone would pick that person and they would have more money than they could invest (so returns on investment would drop), it's necessary for the individual to make competent decisions in investing, someone with a high income and has $2 million to invest can get a better 'wage rate' for their time spent looking up investment information than someone who only has $2000 to spend.

In other words, if they manage to find a good investment that returns 20%, they just made $400,000 from the time they spent to do that instead of $400.

Since many doctors do get most of their income from working though, they haven't benefited as much as certain other professions from the rise in inequality. See the last chart here:

http://www.nextnewdeal.net/rortybomb/who-are-1-and-what-do-they-do-living

(Actually since that chart excludes capital gains, maybe physicians in the top 1%/0.1% do get a lot of their income from capital gains. But the point is that you are right, CEOs have the 'potential' to earn more.)

If that means making it more expensive for companies to go overseas or to bring products in from overseas, then by all means... they should do that.

Quoting this for I think the third time to day on this forum:

" The final alternative to working less is for communities to become more isolated and less open to world trade. Instead of buying the cheapest product that was manufactured overseas, people could be encouraged to buy from local producers either by choice or through raising trade barriers to make locally made products more competitive on price. Economists generally agree that this would lower the gross domestic product for a country and for the world, but on the other hand it would raise employment precisely because of the inefficiency that would result. The primary argument against doing this is that the same standard of living could be obtained by encouraging people to work less so that work, and jobs, are more evenly distributed in the population."

I want the government to not spend AND at the same time take the appropriate taxes from the rich and CUT the deficit instead of growing it.

Most people are somewhat in agreement, which is why they would choose cutting government spending over raising corporate taxes.

But not only would trade isolation reduce efficiency, it might not even create enough jobs. Work conservation would both create jobs and maintain the same or higher efficiency.

All I want them to do is close the damned loopholes and make it more difficult to move money to and from tax havens.

On the bright side... I guess... it seems that companies need to bring profits back to the US to pay dividends or something. So tax havens lose some of their value if the US avoids having a 'tax holiday'.

Tax loopholes lead to net employment increase compared to a cleaner tax code, for the simple reason that it employs tax accountants. If work conservation is adopted, the tax code can be made cleaner without increasing unemployment (lower need for tax accountants).

Re health insurance profits: the first article says those profits are for "the five largest publicly traded insurers", so it sounds like people are just not choosing the cheapest insurance plan. Or maybe the fact they get Medicare Advantage and Medicaid clients explains some of the profits.

(Just look at price comparisons of the US vs other countries, included in one of the above links, which probably explains more of the high cost of health care than 'unnecessary care' does. Quote:

An MRI costs around $160 in Japan[16] and $281 in France, but costs $1,080 on average in the United States, varying from a low of $503 at the 25th percentile to a high of $2,758 at the 95th percentile.)

[-] 1 points by toukarin (488) 2 years ago

"The primary argument against doing this is that the same standard of living could be obtained by encouraging people to work less so that work, and jobs, are more evenly distributed in the population"

Tough task to convince someone to work less and thus take home proportionately less money when they are already struggling to make ends meet.

"so it sounds like people are just not choosing the cheapest insurance plan. Or maybe the fact they get Medicare Advantage and Medicaid clients explains some of the profits."

As I said. I know that health Insurance is not the only villain in the healthcare story. But they are not by any means clean. What makes you think people did not choose the cheapest option with the appropriate coverage?

Tax loopholes lead to net employment increase compared to a cleaner tax code, for the simple reason that it employs tax accountants. If work conservation is adopted, the tax code can be made cleaner without increasing unemployment (lower need for tax accountants).

The same result could also be achieved by simply cleaning up the tax code.... because the end result from both scenarios is the same... a lower need for accountants... except in the case of a cleaner code... we have more tax revenue from the same tax rates...

There is something you seem to be misunderstanding... I am not against work conservation at all. I am saying that it cannot just work all by itself... it is not a magic bullet.... That said, it should apply to everyone... including those at the very top....

Also (and this is something I have been wanting to clear up)... In what way do you think that the people here are 'wrong' about the rich?

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

Tough task to convince someone to work less and thus take home proportionately less money when they are already struggling to make ends meet.

Something like 1/6 of the US population is in poverty... but that means that 5/6 isn't in poverty. Those are the people who could immediately choose to work less at a higher income, allowing college students in retail jobs to work in their field of study.

What makes you think people did not choose the cheapest option with the appropriate coverage?

Possibly it was employers who were not choosing the cheapest option, not individuals (but the article says much of the profits are probably due to Medicare Advantage anyway). But since it's hospitals etc. who actually provide health care, and at best insurers only provide some kind of "managed care plan" that tells you when to take immunization shots or something, competitive pressures will naturally reduce profits if people actually choose the cheapest plan. I am assuming the 2% profit margin for the health insurance as a whole is still valid, since you did not provide anything to contradict that.

except in the case of a cleaner code... we have more tax revenue from the same tax rates...

Normally in these proposals you eliminate loopholes and lower the tax rate. If all major corporations are using the same loopholes and hiring tax accountants, then the loopholes do not lead to any competitive advantage from unethical behavior (the "double irish with dutch sandwich" pioneered by Apple is used by hundreds of corporations now) and just lead to tax accountant employment.

So we could raise corporate tax rates to raise revenues if we wanted to without eliminating tax loopholes. Most people understand that corporate profits do not generally create jobs, but they still prefer a smaller government to higher corporate taxes.

This is why I see no benefit in eliminating loopholes if unemployment is this high. If unemployment goes down to reasonable levels (either through work conservation or, possibly, if it goes down by itself... the lack of change in employment-to-population ratio is the biggest indication that it will be years before employment returns to normal levels with current policy) then I could see a reason to fix loopholes to eliminate inefficiency.

Also (and this is something I have been wanting to clear up)... In what way do you think that the people here are 'wrong' about the rich?

There is a strong attitude on these forums that "the rich are evil, and if everyone would just be nice we could fix everything".

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

This post is spot on. I don't give two shits if someone is "nice" but I do care if the rules of the game are skewed heavily towards one side. Right now 1% of society gets to use "cheat codes" in the game of life thanks to lobbyists, tax breaks, loopholes, bailouts, and constant erosion of workers' rights.

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

(this is mostly the Republican party because they're opposed to 'big government'; see http://www.nextnewdeal.net/rortybomb/why-spending-through-tax-code-popular-right for how it works)

See http://jaredbernsteinblog.com/saturday%E2%80%99s-pape%E2%80%99s-muckraking-and-personnel/ for specific examples of unjustified government spending.

[-] 1 points by Puzzlin (2898) 2 years ago

Who's wrong???

[-] 1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 2 years ago

The people making the laws are financed by the unethical profiteers... we're protesting to make their harmful practices outlawed and oust the corrupt politicians in the government.

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

If people voted for politicans like the US Senator in the Abscam scandal who refused a bribe, maybe there would be more transparency. (Compare the politician who introduced the legislation forcing the US military to buy $17k drip pans when a competitor offers them for $2.5k.)

Some people might assume that we have to work around the stupidity of the average voter, but I disagree. One of the main arguments concerning work conservation is that conflicting goals cause people to think more critically.

There is also evidence that problems like unemployment cause people to ignore other issues like global warming. So work conservation, by fixing unemployment, would allow people to vote more intelligently on other issues.

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

[-] 1 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

People!! Why try to reason with this Misaki? His/her head is in the clouds, dull and unimaginative. There is no way improvement of life can be communicated or obtained by individuals whose thought processes as well as their actions are on the same level as the WILDEBEEST!!!!

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

It's the real Neuwurldodr, not the fake one... sorry, had to check.

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

You are wrong on both of you first positions.

The first is the assumption that society will allow unethical ways of making money to exist, instead of outlawing those activities as soon as they are shown to be harmful. Obviously you are wrong because society in no longer in control. Control has been usurped by some in the 1%

The second is the assumption that the buyer in a transaction benefits more than the seller, and that the only way to reverse this arrangement is to be dishonest. Nobody assumes that. This is true if there is fraud and coercion involved. The way to reverse it is to reverse it. This requires a system of justice that actually works and hasn't been rigged by some to benefit themselves. The way to fix the system is to fix it and take out the various forms of corruption that are impeding its function. Anything you say that isn't contributing to that correction, is completely irrelevant.

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

Obviously you are wrong because society in no longer in control. Control has been usurped by some in the 1%

The event which it seemed the population as a whole was most upset about last year was the raising of the debt ceiling.

"Support for increasing the debt ceiling has risen 22 points from last month, from 24 percent to 46 percent. Opposition has fallen 20 points in that period, from 69 percent to 49 percent. (See graphic at left.)"

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-20080492-503544.html

Do you take the raising of the debt ceiling, which allowed the US to keep paying government workers, as evidence that the 1% are in control?

Or more to the point, do you have any actual unethical ways of money to point out? Is selling an iPhone for $800 when it only costs $300 to make "unethical"? Someone else that I just responded to said that

"Creating value by providing goods and services that people freely buy is one way. Rigging the game and the use force, threats or fraud is another. . . . If you invented the iPod and the markets want it, you should make profits, if you use those profits to bribe Congress to let you avoid paying your taxes, shame on you and we must fix that."

As I pointed out there, Apple was taking advantage of existing tax code when it invented its tax avoidance strategy now used by hundreds of other corporations. Tax loops that do exist, or special "porkbarrel" provisions, are voted on by the entire Congress which people elected, and continue to elect.

As I said in response to another post,

If people voted for politicans like the US Senator in the Abscam scandal who refused a bribe, maybe there would be more transparency. (Compare the politician who introduced the legislation forcing the US military to buy $17k drip pans when a competitor offers them for $2.5k.)

Some people might assume that we have to work around the stupidity of the average voter, but I disagree. One of the main arguments concerning work conservation is that conflicting goals cause people to think more critically.

There is also evidence that problems like unemployment cause people to ignore other issues like global warming. So work conservation, by fixing unemployment, would allow people to vote more intelligently on other issues.

So in other words,

The way to fix the system is to fix it and take out the various forms of corruption that are impeding its function. Anything you say that isn't contributing to that correction, is completely irrelevant.

The corruption in the system is the voters themselves. Work conservation would fix this.

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

The man with a hammer sees the world as a nail.

When you get tired of splitting hairs and putting words in people's mouths you might try putting your intellect to more productive purposes. You are wasting time you don't own.

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

http://jobcreationplan.blogspot.com/2012/03/importance-of-options.html

As per your suggestion, I won't waste my time summarizing something you haven't responded to.

[-] 1 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

I am not poor, nor have I ever been, I come from a family that worked, works, and has a means of independent economics and does not rely on wall street or fake ass jargon, such as your post .... that produces nothing!. People are poor because they believed a**holes such as you and your kind had their best interest at heart and never took it upon themselves to realize that they were slaves to you and your kind and still are, like so many others have been.... Now, with that being said....you can take your views on inequality, shove them up your arse and take a slow boat back to where you came from.. Like Indo-Europe maybe???? Can you produce your own food source dum dum??? Why are you responding to me when you have no human heart to feel anything anyway? So stop wasting my time trying to justify your BULL SHIT!!!

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

People are poor because they believed a**holes such as you and your kind had their best interest at heart

http://occupywallst.org/forum/why-economists-are-wrong/

Quoted from that:

The experts in political economy say: spend more money, and employment will go up.

This is wrong. The decisions made during spending are important to whether it will raise employment and help the poor, and for a simple reason: charities are not in the business of giving people jobs. Over the last two years, over five dozen American billionaires have pledged to give the majority of their wealth to a worthy cause, but many of the poor in the US are more concerned with the basic necessities of living—food, shelter—that philanthropy does not tend to provide.

See bolded part especially.

[-] 2 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

Look.....if you are happy living inside your well insulated illusionary illustrious bubble...who am I to try to burst it apart! I don't care what the experts say, I don't care what economists say, I don't care what wall street says and I don't care what republicans or democrats say. I don't care what Priests say, I don't care what politicians say....or Doctors, lawyers or judges, or scientists or educators or anyone else involved in the systematic destruction of human kind! They aren't paying my bills, or feeding me or my family and they sure as Hell aren't giving up any TRUTHS!!! Somewhat like you....right? But one thing I can say for sure.....anyone who thinks they have all the answers to correct this fiasco while forgetting how this nation got its origin in the first place s a bigger fool than the alleged "founders" . It will never change and will only get worse!! And.....If any billionaires were helping the poor, as they lie about, there would be no more poor folks! Sheesh!!! You poor gullible saps!!!

[-] 1 points by BradB (2693) from Washington, DC 2 years ago

an Answer ... a Social Reserve Bank .... to pick up what has been left in the dust

[-] 4 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

Finally, a voice of reason......exactly....after the dust settles and re-construction begins.....Oh and it shall...it will never ever return to the way it was.
Most individuals on this forum have no conception on how time always brings about change, whether we like it or not...since the dawn of mankind. It is being forced on all! They have no perception on what to do about this devastation across the globe or why it is actually taking place...realistically speaking.
What I constantly read on this forum is the belief that this elitist illusionary system will continue and remain the same for the few to make a few changes that might seemingly make it right again!
It ain't gonna happen!! Everyone must either play their part to correct this, or get trampled in the dust by doing nothing to learn a different and better way to save themselves and humanity!.

[-] 2 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

In your posts, you speak as though you are separate from the rest of us. It seems like you are caught in the middle. You can't tell us what it is you know, because you have obligations to secrecy, or perhaps you have a waning/waxing sense of loyalty between us and your 'family'. Your frustration comes through via anger towards us at how stupid we are for not seeing what's coming and veiled knowledge. It screams "read between the lines". Your anger is growing as of late. Is that because the point of no return is imminent? You want to tell us....to warn us...yet you won't. Why? I think I know. But how can these people be expected to even begin to understand what you mean, when they have not been privy to even the smallest amount of information, because they have been lied to for decades.

There have been a few whistleblowers who have told of the information I think you may be sitting on. You are not being fair. It seems like you want to help. If so...well....then do it. If you are safe to do so, either tell us what it is that sits in your chest wanting to burst out, or let us know where we can look (websites) in order to get the information for ourselves.

[-] 2 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

If you have followed my posts (as you claim that you do) I give information that is not only enlightening, but accurate, up front and to the point. I can take a mule to the watering hole, but that doesn't mean I can make it drink or even budge for that matter, because mules are stubborn just the same as the masses are. They see what they want to see and believe what they want to believe. Now, let us go back to the founding fathers, why they came here, what they found and why they covered it up!! Once again, read the writings of Benjamin Franklin, read who actually wrote the constitution, read how many Presidents were of alleged mix races and covered up how they got that way. There are no secrets out here my man.....the only secret that exists are the truths the masses refuse to acknowledge. Read who signed the Paris Peace Treaty, and what was given the "alleged" founding fathers. Read, the Moroccan Peace Treaty....read all the treatise that this great nation has established throughout the globe. They always have one major theme in them.....read and you will find it!!!! I am separate from all of you...because I have searched out the truth since I was a child and never understood why this country lived in the land of OZ and still do. As I stated before, none of you, not even OWS would have made these moves if the powers that be had maintained the falsehood that there was a part of this nation that did not exist, contribute or have the right to be on these shores, while all of the other part of this nation held on to the falsehood that they were better, more entitled, or had the right to put their foot on the neck of others to keep it that way! Now they have their foot on the necks of their own kind, everyone for that matter!!!.....Do you understand what that means? They never gave a damn in the first damn place!! Now, here you all are......drowning like those who have done so before you for over 2000 years! Do I feel sorry for any of you? HELL NO Am I different from the rest....no....never thought I was, but then again I never thought like the rest of you either for that matter!! And that's the truth!! So, stop acting like you are in the dark about this great nation of ours, or think that I don't know any better about your knowledge.... Now the question is...what are you all gonna do about it?

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

Work conservation would reduce inequality.

Vote. http://the99percentvotes.com/idea/US95

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

That's right Ding Dong. Keep up the good work trying to expose the Elite Illumanati Mind Controllers. Neuwurldodr obviously has some super secret information that only your brilliant Elite Radar Skills can detect and expose!! Surely you can get this valuable information out of him to save humanity! Do your 'job' Ding Dong. Don't give up. Expose these Elite Super Secrets and save the world Ding Dong! Yes you're right! It sits in his chest and wants to burst out!! Help him Ding Dong help him! We need to know the secret website that can tell us the answers that will save the world! Then it'll be Queen Ding Dong for you!

[-] 1 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

You all are not following the right posts. I don't give a damn about the Illuminati, those guys are your Daddies.... My posts are about the truth...like when Ben Franklin stated it would be better for all of the pale skins to come over here and make this a lighter nation than to keep it as dark as it was when they found it.... Now, remember.....all secret orders come from your families of founding fathers and wall street conglomorates. I don't really give a damn about them because they might as well be playing with marbles when it comes to reality. Oh...never mind...I forgot...they lost their marbles so now they must play with your minds....Are you all having fun yet? The truth gettin to you fellas? What else did you want to know?

[-] 1 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

You're a hermaphrodite, aren't you trashy!? Absolutely nothing wrong with that. But you really should stay in the male dominant section of your brain, because you're doing a huge disservice to the women of the world and the feminine side of yourself. No woman speaks like this in the real world.

Don't be upset that the secret is out. Everything is perfectly ok. I know a hermaphrodite and he (lives mainly as a male but dresses feminine) lives very comfortably in his own body. Very happy...and you should be too! If you're going to be living as a woman part of the time here, at least work on getting rid of "April's" teenage girl rants and sound like a grown woman.

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

You're really off the deep end Ding Dong. But if it makes you feel oh so smart to have 'outed' my 'hermaphrodite' identity - whatever helps your pea sized brain get by. Really brilliant detective work Ding Dong. Surely if you can identify and expose me as a 'hermaphrodite', exposing Neuwurldodr's knowledge and connections with Elite Illumanati Super Duper Super Secrets should be easy peezy for you Ding Dong. Enough of this idle chit chat. Get back to 'work' exposing World Wide Super Secrets. If you want to be Queen Ding Dong .... I'm just sayin'....

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

This is why I felt justified in saying that OWS doesn't have a plan for jobs.

Edit: also, the moon does not exist.

[-] -2 points by NeuwurIdodr (-5) 2 years ago

Why so quick to judge? The world is a manifold of secrets; ones bigger than the others.

[-] 2 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

Fake Neuwurldodr above

[-] 1 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

Renneye.....are you confessing now?

[-] 0 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

Confessing? I don't know what you mean. Earlier this morning I composed a post to you, and trashy followed it by pretending he was you by changing the "l" to a capital "i" in your username. I've been exposing him since.

Months ago there was a poster here with the initials NEP. He said similar things that you do. I asked him several things, and we had good conversations, but when it came to the crux of the matter he ended up scared and talking in riddles and leaving.

There is undoubtedly a question of varying degrees by which individuals would agree that our history books have been fudged. Perhaps you didn't have to concern yourself with the things that the every day child had to, or perhaps it was a question of accessibility to information. I don't know.

You are clearly angry. I guess my question is, are you here to help if you have information that the average person may not be privy to, or are you here because you want to preach to us how stupid we all are?

If I'm being totally frank, then I would have to say your rants really smack of an elitist looking down the proverbial nose at us filthy, uneducated beasts. The reasonable question then becomes, why are you really here?

[Removed]

[-] 1 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

Once again Renneye.....you are posting wrong...I never post like the above because I tell it like it is. There are no more secrets my man....don't you get it? I am not afraid of the truth...you all are!! If your chromosomes have you all confused as to what I am posting here... IS THAT MY FAULT??? Besides....I always twinkle!!!

[-] 0 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

Ok, I see why the confusion. Its of relative unimportance, but trashy's posts where he is impersonating you have been deleted. So this portion of the thread doesn't make sense the way it is. Clearly he understands now, that he shouldn't have done that.

Ok, I hear you. You're not afraid of the truth. You've worked through your journey. I understand.

Would you agree that most of the masses have been lied to, to such a degree by forces they did not even know were there, and thereby did not know there was a journey to be taken? That they view their lives as the truth as they know it? If yes, then how can you fault them? They didn't know there were secret societies with selfish megalomaniacs with perpetual resources, thinks tanks and countless people to do their bidding. The hour is late, as I'm sure you know. To tell us now, to go out and find all the hidden histories so we can 'figure out' what's really happening, although would be interesting, is not exactly reasonable given that the world is going to hell in a hand-basket.

If you are truly here to help, then tell us what we need to know. Are we looking at a time-line that you're aware of?

Are there certain individuals that we should be concerned with?

Are there troubling locations we should be aware of?

Is there a strategy to dis-empower TPTB, that stands out better than the rest?

I see a strategy that is far different than the majority on this site. That of exposing the top decision makers. I think the masses should be aware of their rulers.

What say you to all this?

[-] 2 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

Well, my apologies then. I am not here to create drama, but just let individuals know that from my studies, which have been world wide I can admit, that most individuals (especially the masses) have truly been misinformed about their past history and the people who created it on these shores, Those who do know sure as hell ain't gonna tell ya!! No one understands how this has led up to the world wide fiasco we are currently involved in. There is nothing wrong with people working together as a Unit, or understanding their connections to each other,. In fact most people don't realize that divide and conquer is the overall concept of gain for the rich, powerful and greedy. After all, how are nations destroyed? By the Unity of their Oppressors to do just that, divide and conquer! Yet, it is disguised under labels that alienate subject to race, religion, education, sciences, biology, the caste system, the poor (who are labeled as being unworthy), the rich (who are labeled as being entitled) and all sorts of man made hypocrisese by and for those who use, abuse, and destroy for their own personal gain.
Now, how many are willing to understand that mentally, forming the beginning of thought that to know and understand who you are, where you come from makes the path better to move forward into the future? Find out the truth regarding the reasons for forming these different global governments. It was not to help the people of the land, but to help those who conquered them! People, this is a conquered land we are living on....once you understand that you can move forward with a clearer thought of vision for all those who live here and want to improve their lives, which is the right for every man woman and child....regardless of race, creed, or color!!! That is the key!!! Re-learn the correct history....re-read your early documents, the Constitution, the writings of the founding fathers...not the Texas made up history books that are used to brainwash and indoctrinate everyone. Read the actual writings, documents, treaties, writings of the first peoples and especially of Josiah Priest who gives narratives of what was found and existed here long before the pale skin European set foot on these shores, and the "alleged" Native Americans. Now with that said....Title "The Wonders of Nature and Providence Displayed: Compiled from Authentic Sources, Both Ancient and Modern" Title: "American Antiquities: Discoveries in the West- Publisher Notes "Being an exhibition of the evidence that an ancient population of many partially civilized nations differing entirely from those of the present day indians peopled America many centuries before its discovery by Columbus, and inquiries into their origin, with a copious description of many of their stupendous works, now in ruins, with conjectures concerning what may have become of them. Compiled from travels, Authentic sources, and the researches of antiquarian societies." - from the 1832 second edition by Josiah Priest. Ask yourselves, why has this race renaming been so important to pale skin Europeans"....."Bible Defense of Slavery and Origin Fortunes and History of the Negro Race" With this I must admit, I am done here. People have got to stop being afraid of the TRUTH and search it out for themselves in order to grow and move forward!

[-] 1 points by gnomunny (6587) from St Louis, MO 2 years ago

I'd like to see your book collection. If those two editions are any indication, it sound like my kind of personal library.

[-] 1 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

Thanks kindly for this reply. I know much of what you speak of in your post. I was lucky enough to have parents that knew of the educational benefits of travel. In the younger years of my life I was able to visit 12 different countries.

I heard Dr. Rima Laibow (a naturopath) speak about a "big pharma" cover-up a while back, and it made me start to question things. I started to research and one thing led to another, and I feel I have a pretty good overview of the shady government and elite underhandedness and the cartoon history we've been fed.

It only stands to reason that the only way the elite globalists could have gotten as far as they have, is through secrecy. Yet if one makes that statement on this forum, its as though saying the word 'secrecy' is equated to words like "magic" or "voodoo". The implication from the masses is "you must have a screw loose if you think governments and elites work in collusion and 'secrecy'. To me, it is only reasonable to ask the question "how else could they have done this?". Its a very difficult wall to get through. Thankfully, there are some on this website who know. However, they are freaked out at the possibility of being lumped in with the 'conpiracy theorists' and don't want to take the chance of losing their built up credibility.

There are a couple of people who are working on getting the truth of our real heritage out to the masses. Its been difficult for them, but they are persevering. There are many who don't want that information to see the light of day.

I've only just gotten in for the day, and I want to explore the titles you have mentioned here. Then I would like to ask you a few questions tomorrow, if you're up for it?

[-] 1 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

Intelligent discussions always peaks my interest because the truth never hurts.. I can actually understand what you have posted and I look forward to more.

Hope your remaining day is peaceful and restful.

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

I had a secret fold to hide my ballet in today

I didn't use it

I did vote

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (7030) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

hey wait a minute, who'd you vote for? did I miss the post?

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

they say the elections are rigged so lets just all vote in public

[-] 1 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

You're a treasure MattLHolck !

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

We should have a national MattLHolck Holiday and vote in public !

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

Right. Then please help Ding Dong figure it all out. Be sure to let us all know when you two find the Ultimate Elite World Wide Super Secret. Maybe she'll take you on as a partner in her Elite Illuminati Detective Agency Work.

Here. Help Ding Dong track down and expose this Elite Super Secret. Maybe this will lead you two to that Ultimate Elite Super Secret that will save the world. Surely this is an important clue!!

http://occupywallst.org/forum/svali-elite-mind-control-programmer-rare-interview/#comment-612272

[-] 2 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

Lizard. Really Tre-shitty, you do need more practice sounding like a real woman. You're just not pulling this off very well.

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

Whatever you say Ding Dong. Can we have an update on Svali? That deserves a new post. Get to 'work'. Why so much idle chit chat. We need to know this. It's an important clue to the Ultimate Elite Super Duper Super Secret!! You're a brilliant detective Ding Dong! I know you won't let us down. Please help us! You're our only hope! Only your superior skills in Elite exposure can get us the information we so desparately need! Go to the websites with all the Super Secrets and get us an update on Svali!!

[-] 3 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

You're fracturing trashy. Now....now stay away from the knives. You poor thing. Its ok april, trashy will be fine without you.

april - how come trashy never comes to your aid....when you come to his SO often? Does he not like you very much? Do you know he's into "The Hammer of Thoracious"? Well he is, he told me so. I don't think that's a very good role model for a lovely young woman like yourself....do you?

Deep cleansing breaths now. Take it slow.

O trashy, who am I kidding. Nothing a good frying pan to the head wouldn't take care of. Do it april...do it! It won't hurt him much.

Really trashy, give it up. You're a terrible female impersonator.

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

Why should Thras come to my 'aid'? You're right. He probably doesn't like me at all. But why do I need help? Are you going to try to put me under some kind of anti-Elite Mind Control, Kooky Lunatic Voodoo Tricky Spell or something? Please save me!! I might be the next victim like Svali! I'll be sure to post my story on the Super Secret Website. Which one do you like the best? I need to make sure my victimization by the Elite is 'exposed'. You're my only hope Ding Dong!

Hey I just won the geo's Civics Award of the day thanks to you! Thanks Ding Dong! I would have missed that.

See! I thanked you!

http://occupywallst.org/forum/this-recession-wasnt-bad-enough/#comment-754585

I have to go now. The Elite's are calling to me - you know, mind control and all. Don't forget to give me the name of that Super Secret Website for when I'm released from their mind control.

[-] 1 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

Good for you trashy. What's the prize? An all paid round trip to "The Hammer of Thoracious"? Nice hobby you got there. Like I said, nothing a good frying pan to the head couldn't cure.

[-] -1 points by CaptainTony (-145) 2 years ago

Sorry, but perhaps you forgot this is an online forum in which pseudoanonymous posters can exchange words but nothing more.

Knives? Hammers? Frying Pans?

Ridiculous...

[-] 2 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

O trashy. Yet another name? Isn't it time for some R & R on your favorite website, "The Hammer of Thoracious"? Run along now, it's time to give your fractured mind some soothing down time. Or...a frying pan to the head!

[-] -1 points by CaptainTony (-145) 2 years ago

I don't know your "trashy", but I can clearly recognize your immaturity.

[-] 1 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

Damage control ??? Really ? If you didn't react so easily to things you didn't agree with, you wouldn't have to bother with new characters and subterfuge. Must be awful having tourrettes.

Go relax somewhere with a nice drink. Maybe a nice puzzle or something. Go and ask at the nurses station if they'll unlock the puzzle cabinet for you. Shouldn't be too dangerous. No knives or hammers to play out your sick masochistic dreams in there. How long are you in for? 30? 40? life?

[-] -3 points by NeuwurIdodr (-5) 2 years ago

You are very perspicacious. I imagine you must have heard numerous confessions from ex-Elite such as I, else how could you know what you know?

I have wanted to speak out for so long now. Fear, loyalty, confusion, these are the poisons that held me back. You're right! I must share the information I know. If not, who will? The time has come.

What you see today has been planned for decades. My 'family', as you say, has worked hard at creating a veil to hide reality from your eyes. Most people don't have an open mind like you, so even when they are told the truth, they don't believe it. You know better.

Have you heard of The Order? What about The Hammer of Thoracious? I assume you've heard of the Manchurian?

Tell me where you're coming from, what you know. Then I will know which parts of the secret I must reveal to you.

[-] 1 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

Nice try trashy with the capital i and no karma points. Hammer of Thoracious?? You are one sick puppy. Oops, nevermind, I didn't say puppy. Don't go getting any ideas. Looks like a puppy wouldn't last long around you. Christ ! Just turn yourself in already.

[-] 0 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

Why put my name on this? ^ If you have something to post RENNEYE, strap on some balls, post it and don't use me for your bull shyt.

[-] 0 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

Oops, I see the posts are still here after all, but they are shuffled. Any way, I posted some pretty direct questions earlier. Do with them what you will.

[-] -1 points by Renneye (3783) 2 years ago

I did not put your name on anything. Trashy did. I had hoped to start a discussion with you this morning, and he followed. HE posted as you by manipulating your username. I hope that solves the confusion.

[-] 0 points by Neuwurldodr (744) 2 years ago

Ridiculous!

[-] 3 points by gnomunny (6587) from St Louis, MO 2 years ago

No, it's not. Check the karma points.

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

'but if more corporations did this it would just mean that their employees would accept higher prices for things they bought, meaning that those profits would just end up in the pockets of the shareholders"

OR, they'd be able to actually afford to send their kids to college?

http://www.obamaftw.com/blog/tea-party/occupy-wall-street-ows-vs-the-tea-party-a-brief-comparison

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

Go to a community college maybe? If an Ivy League school charged $100k/year tuition but gave kids a $5k/year scholarship (so they only pay $95k per year!), would people still want to send their kids there?

$200k?

$500k?

The article you linked to simultaneously praises Obama for enacting more tax cuts than Bush (chart: "in the first term") while pinning blame for the high deficit on the Bush tax cuts. Lulz.

I am not sure if they were serious with the picture at the end.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago
[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago

A short story.

I was playing the MMO Aion, sort of. Waiting to see if the developers would fix the PvP system. So I would spend most of my in-game time crafting items, and very occasionally going out to gather materials but mostly just buying things from the in-game broker that mediated exchanges between players.

I maximized my efficiency and pricing strategies but was selling "commodities". In the end, I only had about 40 million worth of currency.

Meanwhile, someone else used a different strategy where they bought rare items and, after those items gained value from a change in game mechanics, sold those items and ended up with something like 140 million. I had tried investing in the raw materials used to make those same items but they didn't really increase in price the way I thought they might.

Someone who sells to the rich can make more money mostly because the rich have so much more money right now, as a result of brands. If people buy less brands and income inequality is lower, then selling to the poor becomes profitable.

(I have not watched it yet, just read the Wikipedia intro)

[-] 1 points by freewriterguy (882) 2 years ago

i totally didnt get that first paragraph, who is using unethical ways to counter the hoarding of the rich?...

or the last one... "if it helps employment to buy an ipone if your rich, u can pretend your a nice person, even if your not, if your rich, by buying an iphone could also make you seem more than you are...

does anyone else think this is circle talk?

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

The example I was thinking of was conflict diamonds and minerals.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conflict_minerals
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blood_diamond

But those are cases of buying from someone who obtained their resources in what is agreed to be an unethical way. (Example, Apple has recently promised to avoid using "conflict minerals" in its supply chains as part of the attempt to improve its image after the NYT's iEconomy series.)

I couldn't think of any similar examples when it came to selling things, except maybe "arms dealing" which most people don't really have as an opportunity. But for example, if you were offered the job of working as a high-paid chauffeur for someone in the 1%, I felt that there might be some people who would reject this job on 'ethical grounds'.

does anyone else think this is circle talk?

I actually came across a nice psychology article which basically described this exact effect:

https://peerreviewedbymyneurons.wordpress.com/2012/05/22/why-your-best-friend-ditched-you-for-his-girlfriend/

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

Not another wanna be economist, geesh.

[-] 0 points by gestopomillyy (1695) 2 years ago

they may very well out law them.. they will never enforce those laws. as you can see with the mortgage scandal, none of those bankers are in jail.. or had thier assets used to reimburse anything. they cause at least a half a trillion in damage.. but only fined a few million. so you are wrong. society will allow the rich to break any law, use any scam, practice any unethical method devised . just because they are rich

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

The bankers just bought bad mortgages.

If you are going to blame anyone, you should blame the people who approved those mortgages and gave them ratings, which was real estate companies and so on. But why blame the industry for irrational consumers who purchased into a bubble they thought would increase forever?

This paper has a nice chart on page 27 of the housing bubble. Home ownership went from 64% to a peak of about 69% just before home prices also peaked and then fell.

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

Who do you think underwrites and approves mortgages? Real estate agents?NO.... banks do. The entire industry is to blame for the fraudulent mortgages, they were all in on it.

Maybe you should here it from the horses mouth. Wells Fargo exChariman Dick Kovacevich states this clearly:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4sA_WUZBM24

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

The entire industry is to blame for the fraudulent mortgages, they were all in on it.

Is it criminal to cause yourself to lose money?

Perhaps it would have been better if there was a mechanism to let these banks fail, and there is/was a proposal on how the US could do that in the future (but apparently the Republican party voted it away).

We could still introduce such a mechanism in the future, where if a bank is irresponsible the current stockholders become liable and the board of directors is fired, so debt holders (the people who lent money so a bank could speculate/gamble on the financial markets using leverage) could remke the company.

But just like with global warming, people are more likely to support changes to things like this if we fix unemployment first.

Which can happen through work conservation. http://the99percentvotes.com/idea/US95

[-] 0 points by gestopomillyy (1695) 2 years ago

no bankers used loans they KNEW were bad as assets to inflate stocks. thats illegal and unethical. they did this for the bonuses. GREED . and they are not in jail.

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

Those same banks ended up nearly going bankrupt. Making bad investments is not illegal. The fact that those banks were bailed out, rewarding incompetence, is just a result of the US's flawed bankruptcy procedures. That is something that could be changed but most people right now care more about unemployment.

So if you want bank regulations changed, vote for work conservation. http://the99percentvotes.com/idea/US95

[-] 2 points by gestopomillyy (1695) 2 years ago

portraying an asset you know to be worthless as profitable is illegal. the same as selling a house built on top of a graveyard is illegal. if you dont disclose this information. its fraud. selling anything you know to be worthless or tainted as good and wholesome is illegal.

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

I am not familiar with the specifics of the mortgage securities repackaging industry as it existed before the financial crash. Can you site an article at least (or even a law) which says that what they were doing—giving repackaged securities a higher credit rating than they deserved—was illegal?

Also, do you think the people who were approved for these "bad" mortgages should be forced out of their homes now if they can't make the payments?

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

interest rates compound so people often pay twice the value for long term loans

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

Mortgages give a tax deduction so I can see why people might accept them.

But I have no idea why people accept other high-interest-rate loans like massive credit card debt except if they're planning on declaring bankruptcy. (Medical fees are the leading cause of bankruptcy in the US but I don't think they're known for high interest rates.)

Except, maybe, for student loans (7% is pretty high compared to, say, a savings account) where everyone says you win at life if you graduate college.

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

people accept mortgages because they have no choice if they want property

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

This paper has a nice explanation of how people wanted to lock in a mortgage before prices rose further during the bubble, which is why home ownership rose during that period: http://www.epi.org/page/-/BriefingPaper292.pdf

But that's no excuse for other types of debts. "Wanting to appear less than you are" as described in the OP, or just stupidity, are the only reasons I can think of since many people with high debts can afford to pay the interest.

[-] 1 points by gestopomillyy (1695) 2 years ago

“All a dishonest person had to do was change the reports to make things look better than they were,” Hunt said in an interview. “I wouldn’t play along.”

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-02-16/citigroup-whistle-blower-says-bank-s-brute-force-hid-bad-loans.html

http://www.courthousenews.com/2012/02/22/44064.htm

so out of 45 billion taxpayers dollars - for committing fraud.. no prison time and a paltry 158 million reimbursement. this type of fraud was industry wide not just the ones i can find at the moment

no they should not. there should be a refinance that makes it possible for people to keep primary residence. investment property of course they can take it back. its also strange that after claiming bankruptcy. this bank has 250 billion in cash reserves.

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

Citi is a much smaller and healthier institution and takes much less risk with its money, he said. In December, it repaid $20 billion of its bailout money. The government also has removed $102 billion in guarantees it extended in 2008 for a large portion of Citi's assets.

The remaining $25 billion in bailout money owed by Citi was converted into a 27% government ownership stake in the company, "and we look forward to helping them make money on that investment," Pandit said.

http://articles.latimes.com/2010/mar/05/business/la-fi-citi-bailout5-2010mar05

Some people (the writers of those articles) like to avoid mentioning the fact that banks that were bailed out were required to pay back those loans.

But of course, executives for those banks still got high bonuses despite being irresponsible. Fixing that is not about jail time (it was home owners who committed fraud [...edit: insurance also cost the government money, but that's what the fine was for]), we just need to give companies new ownership when that happens by firing the previous board of directors and management. http://www.nextnewdeal.net/rortybomb/what-five-hours-last-thursday-can-tell-us-about-dodd-frank-and-jp-morgan

no they should not. there should be a refinance that makes it possible for people to keep primary residence.

If someone bought a house before the bubble with a mortgage, then during the housing bubble they took out a home equity loan on the increased value of their house and spent that money, so that now they have to pay both the mortgage and the home equity loan which together total more than the value of their house... should they be able to "refinance" despite that they spent the money from the loan?

[-] 1 points by gestopomillyy (1695) 2 years ago

did you read the article? the banks took those bad loans and passed them off as assets. knowingly. thats fraud. its not about the people that dont pay back the loans.. its about the banks defrauding the stockholders... including the government (the taxpayers- the working class). as for people paying back. if you loan to someone you KNOW will not pay you back.. should you be paid back? no. thats a gamble you took, knowing the odds.. if they dont pay back.. its not a surprise , nor should it be enforceable. as you mention.. the banks were not required to pay back the full amount. they traded the money in for stocks.(on a company already knowingly breaking the law.. taking high risk and will fail) why should home owners be treated any different?

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

More correctly, the banks rewarded employees for having a low rate of rejection for mortgages. If you were going to accuse anyone of fraud it would be the employees, and it did say the manager in charge of the unit got fired.

It also says that the acceptable rate of "bad paperwork" was 5%, while the actual rate was 15%. So they're not expected to be perfect. And it did say the government is leaving the possibility of criminal charges open.

why should home owners be treated any different?

Do you mean that the government should have partial ownership of peoples' homes??

The way I see it: they DID pay a fine which was about equal to the amount of insurance the government had to pay. Even if they followed all the procedures there would have been some failed loans so the $200 million the government spent wasn't all the result of fraud. Maybe the government shouldn't bail out "too big to fail" banks, but existing laws (bankruptcy chapter 11 or whatever) apparently would not have helped the situation.

Our nation is generally against punishing people if a law defining the crime did not exist when the action occurred. It definitely makes sense to prepare for the same situation in the future though, which is why JP Morgan losing $2+ billion in risky trades made headlines recently because it proved that the situation is likely to happen again.

[-] 1 points by gestopomillyy (1695) 2 years ago

i understood it to say they threatened the employees with termination if they did not allow bad loans to go thru. this means the ceo's and all management knew what was going on. fraud. and no not the government. the banks.. as with the government.. they are giveing the money for free to the banks on the gamble the bank will make more money.. if the banks lose the money.. no foul.. same for a home owner.. if they make enough to pay ,, them pay if they lose their job or whatever.. no pay no foul. you see how that would work?

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

It talked about coworkers pressuring the whistleblower to approve bad applications because it gave financial incentives to all of them.

It also says they had a meeting/conference where they publicly recognized people who "challenged" disapprovals of bad loans by making them work somehow, which "humiliated" people who tried to be more stringent and adhere to the standards.

It doesn't say the whistleblower (or anyone else) risked being fired for disapproving loans.

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