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Forum Post: The Traitors Within Us

Posted 2 years ago on June 7, 2012, 2:06 a.m. EST by Misaki (893)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

We have a problem in this country. There is a group of people with so much hate in their hearts that they are willing to accept injury to themselves if it will deprive the target of their hatred of enjoyment of life.

No, it isn't Occupy Wall Street and the top 1%. It is those who oppose doing anything to help the unemployed because they view people who haven't been able to find work as not deserving of help. Polls suggest that this group consists of a significant portion of our society, but their willful dishonesty and distortion of facts has lead to an even larger influence such that unemployment is still high nearly four years after the financial crisis and recession that caused the loss of millions of jobs here in the United States.

It is our responsibility to the unemployed and those whose careers have been delayed by the recession to identify these harmful elements of society and end their influence. Their selfish attitudes may be the result of malice or just stupidity, but we cannot allow them to poison our democracy any longer.

Surprisingly, it is not the super rich who are responsible for our economic problems. Most entrepreneurs come from the middle class, and the rich generally do not invent new product types or services that lead to more employment nor do they need to—the rich create jobs simply by spending money. As a historical trend the top 1% have been gaining a greater share of income without an equal increase in spending, but this is entirely the fault of us as consumers for making spending choices that result in high corporate profits that go to the rich.

Then who are the harmful elements in society who oppose creating jobs for the unemployed? The answer is simple. It is the middle class who benefit from high levels of inequality and unemployment and those elements of the poor they can delude into helping them. Polls show that, with unemployment still high and inequality at a level not seen since the Great Depression of the 1930's, almost three fifths of the US population think that money and wealth should be more evenly distributed but less than half support government spending as the way to address the problems facing our society. Unemployment hurts all workers, yet these people allow it to continue.

As a nation we could easily create enough jobs for everyone by working less and compensating for the drop in income by buying fewer status symbols. This would allow those with advanced education or skills to find appropriate work while lowering the profits of corporations that depend on selling overpriced items and services to the affluent. But it is precisely the reduction in inequality this would cause that makes it understandable that some people would oppose this plan. Lower unemployment would mean higher wages for the poor which is of no concern to the super rich who can pay for anything, but it would cause problems for businesses that depend on exploiting low-wage workers to make a profit or that provide certain services to the rich that would see lower demand, such as Wall Street and the financial sector. Even corporations that do not sell to the rich might be forced to lower their prices to maintain the same volume of sales, which could lead to a reduction of income for the more well-paid members of an organization.

So it is important to understand that some people in the middle class have a very real interest in maintaining current levels of inequality. Some people might be deluded into thinking that the economic crisis has hurt the rich when the truth is just the opposite, but the continued efforts of those on the progressive portion of the political spectrum and the limited impact of the protests of Occupy Wall Street have shown that misperception is only part of the problem. Some people like how unequal the United States has become and think they can get away with ignoring our nation's problems, or worse, actively trying to make them worse by further reducing government spending in a time of economic need.

It's time to show them that they're wrong. We cannot allow those who work for large corporations to suffer with the knowledge of the profits they help to create while society refuses to help the unemployed by providing a source of income. Whether it is through work conservation or any of the myriad of solutions that involve more government spending and taxation, we will not allow this state of affairs to continue any longer. Whether it is a third or even a majority of the population who support oppression of the underprivileged members of society, our victory is already assured since creatures of darkness are not known to thrive in sunlight.

64 Comments

64 Comments


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

There are 2 problems in our economy: 18% are underemployed and 50% are in or close to poverty.

The "1%" are responsible for both of those problems.

Unemployment can only be solved by launching enough new businesses and expanding enough existing businesses to employ all those who are underemployed. That requires investment. It is the "1%" who control investment. Since they are not investing enough, they are responsible for the unemployment.

The second problem is that most people are broke, even the ones who work. That is also the fault of the "1%". The 1% take most of the available income which leaves too little income for everyone else. When you pay the Yankees third baseman $20 million per year, that is $20 million less everyone else can make. If the "1%" didn't use their bargaining power to take the incomes they do, there would be more than enough income to make everyone in this country wealthy.

Your solution to this is for the broke people who have jobs to become even more broke by working half the time and sharing their job with someone else. And somehow being more poor than they already are will be manageable because they will stop buying overpriced things from big corporations.

I think that is an awful solution.

First of all, big companies have the economies of scale to produce things for less cost, so big companies is where you will usually find the cheapest things.

Secondly, people who are already broke and are already struggling are not going to want to donate half their job to someone else. They couldn't even if they wanted to.

If you are a glutton for punishment and want to keep capitalism around, a better solution is to demand that the government make whatever investment is necessary to fully employ everyone who is out of work with decent paying jobs.

We have not run out of work to do. There is plenty to be done. So people don't have to work less. We have to build more houses, fix our infrastructure, build new airports (we have some of the worst in the world), build a hi-speed rail line, deploy super hi-speed wifi everywhere indoors and outdoors, convert our energy infrastructure. There is plenty of productive work to be done.

But a much better solution is for the 50% who are already broke to go on a strike and demand that we replace capitalism with democracy so that everyone is guaranteed a job with a minimum wage of $115k, a 20 hour work week and a 0% mortgage and we never have to worry about economic problems again.

[-] 2 points by HempTwister (667) from Little Rock, AR 2 years ago

"That requires investment. It is the "1%" who control investment. Since they are not investing enough, they are responsible for the unemployment."

You are thinking Supply Side. They are investing. In treasuries and oil futures.

The problem is that they have too damned much money. They can only buy so much consumer products.

Jobs come from consumer demand. That would be us spending money.

The solution is a high marginal tax rate. They would avoid paying that rate buy spending extra profits on tax deductible business expenses. Cars and copy machines and lathes and maybe employee training. It worked to get us out of the WWII debt and created the greatest middle class the world has ever seen.

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

Very good point and one that isn't made enough!

Demand is what drives the economy. The rich don't want to hire new workers until they are convinced the demand is stable. They ask their current workers to work longer hours and promise the pie in the sky that business is good for you and your job secure. Until it's not, and your fired.

So true. the rich bags don't create anything, they just sell us what we want. When we ain't buying they ain't hiring!!!

This goes to the heart of what OWS is about, we have been screwed by the rich while conservatives were trying to convince the 99% that their our special friends, the job creators.

What load of bullshit. Gooble Gooble. They will eat that with their Obama was born in Kenya special blend.

Fact is, it all stinks to high heaven. But apparently some who wallow in shit have lost their sense of smell. Or maybe that their sense of truth. It's hard to tell when you can never be sure which side is up.

So, just keep gliding along this path, watch gleefully, as we all witness how intelligence can't win the day when ignorance is so prevalent. We're still in the dark ages, we just can't realize it until we come out of it maybe many centuries from now. Or maybe never... as we mistakenly destroy ourselves because the truth was to hard to know or come by.

Welcome to the HUMAN RACE. Good Luck. we're doomed

The Puzzler

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

A higher tax rate also means less of a return on your investment. So I don't think increasing taxes will increase investment. I have a hard time buying that a business would rather spend $100 on expenses than pay $50 in taxes.

[-] 1 points by HempTwister (667) from Little Rock, AR 2 years ago

It worked until Reagan. The top rate used to be 91% on everything over the first $3,000,000, adjusted. What would you do? Pay the government 91$ of your fourth million or buy or remodel your factory?

The problem now is that they take that extra pay and have nothing to do with it other than gamble. Wall Street, oil futures... No stimulative affect, no trickle down, no jobs. But it does blow nice economic bubbles.

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

I wouldn't do either. I just would not invest in the first place. Why would I invest any significant amount if the maximum I can earn is $3 million?

[-] 1 points by HempTwister (667) from Little Rock, AR 2 years ago

So if you had lots more money than you needed what would you do with it?

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

I would spend it on consumption, not on investment. Or I would just not spend it.

[-] 1 points by HempTwister (667) from Little Rock, AR 2 years ago

You have to hedge inflation. That is the way the capitalists think.

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

I am not able to hedge inflation when the govt takes 91% of my investment gains! The measly potential returns are no longer worth the risk.

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

I know that some people are working less. The question is how are you going to get enough workers, who already make enough money, to work less and to get their companies to hire new workers to make up for their lost work so that we can fully employ the 18% who are underemployed?

The assumption from the start has been that if enough people agree that working more does not help the unemployed and are rewarded for working less, people will work less.

The first 20 hours are paid at 1.2 times the normal hourly rate for full-time work.

Work beyond 20 hours in a single week is paid at 0.8 times the normal hourly rate.

Income inequality has nothing to do with buying frivolous things. How does not buying "frivolous" things increase the income of the bottom 50% of workers, for example, and reduce the incomes of the people at the very top?

Several ways. For one, it means that people with higher incomes will spend less on things like housing and health care. The cost of housing is why it wouldn't help to eliminate the minimum wage, since people cannot work at prices competitive with other countries and still make enough to afford basic living expenses.

from 2007 to 2010, there was an increase of 2.3 million households paying more than half of their income for housing (what they define as "severly burdened"); that brings it to a total of 20.2 million... over 60 percent of those making less than $15,000 in this category, and 30 percent of those making between $15 and $30 thousand dollars a year as well. From http://www.nextnewdeal.net/rortybomb/rental-income-percentage-gdp-too-damn-high-and-households-severely-burdened-housing-costs

Second, it would increase demand for people who are doing work without the best qualifications, for example people who did not attend a $50k/year Ivy League school. Or companies without a good 'brand' which is a similar thing. Rich people do not buy $9000 dresses from just anyone. (Oh, I mentioned this in the previous comment already.)

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

If the "1%" didn't use their bargaining power to take the incomes they do, there would be more than enough income to make everyone in this country wealthy.

How exactly does a shareholder use bargaining power? They just buy shares from a company they expect to be profitable. They don't have any involvement with how that company makes its money or how much it pays its workers.

First of all, big companies have the economies of scale to produce things for less cost, so big companies is where you will usually find the cheapest things.

They can produce things at lower cost, which doesn't necessarily mean high profits because other competitors are equally big, but if people will buy at a higher price there's no reason for them to pass savings from cheaper manufacturing along to the consumer.

Secondly, people who are already broke and are already struggling are not going to want to donate half their job to someone else.

So they wouldn't! Only people with plenty of money would choose to work less. The US has the highest per-capita income of any large country. Most of the 1% are working; why do you think no one in the 1% would choose to work less?

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

"How exactly does a shareholder use bargaining power?"

I was referring to the top 1% of income earners. Some of them are shareholders, some are not.

When Tom Cruise uses his bargaining power to command a $40 million salary, that is $40 million less that everyone else in the economy can make.

If he was only paid $100k, the remaining $39.9 million could have been used to raise the incomes of 570 other workers from $30k to $100k.

"why do you think no one in the 1% would choose to work less?"

They don't do jobs that they could share. Tom Cruise is not going to give away half his movie roles. The CEO of some fortune 500 company is not going to share the CEO job with someone else. A CEO instead could just take a $300k salary instead of a $30 million salary and use the $29.7 million to hire 297 workers at $100k each, but that is never going to happen!

Relying on the benevolence of the rich sounds very right-wing and is what got us into this mess in the first place.

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

When Tom Cruise uses his bargaining power to command a $40 million salary, that is $40 million less that everyone else in the economy can make.

The super rich get almost all of their income from capital gains, not working. Are you saying the rich should ask for a lower salary, but the super rich should just keep on doing whatever?

They don't do jobs that they could share. Tom Cruise is not going to give away half his movie roles.

Most of the 1% are not movie stars. http://www.nextnewdeal.net/rortybomb/who-are-1-and-what-do-they-do-living

Only 1.6% of the top 1% are in "Arts, media, sports". Compare 8.4% lawyers and 3.8% "blue collar or miscellaneous service".

The CEO of some fortune 500 company is not going to share the CEO job with someone else.

Executives, managers, supervisors (non-finance) make up 31% of the top 1% so there are plenty who are not in a $300 million/year job. In fact the average CEO makes less than a doctor at about $170k/year. Haven't you ever heard of corporate managers playing golf?!

They could easily work less time, get paid slightly less, and do the same amount of actual work. This would save money for the company to pay other workers more as you seem to want.

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

Of course companies can pay everyone more equally and that would solve all our economic problems. But they are not going to do that. They never have and never will.

How do you plan to get companies to start paying people more equally and using some of their money to hire the underemployed?

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

Scenario:

Junior employee, makes $50k/year.

Senior employee, makes $100k/year.

Manager, makes $150k/year but is similar to stereotypes about management in that he doesn't do a lot of work (see: Peter Principle maybe).

...actually this is probably as pointless to read as it is to type. People who are paid well could choose to work less, which would make wages more equal! The arguments about efficiency are meant to show how paying someone a higher wage rate does not necessarily mean a loss for the company. Someone might work half the time and get paid 60% of their normal salary, but in fact do 70% of their normal work in that amount of time so the company would still benefit.

Maybe people are confused about how this helps the unemployed because corporate profits would seem to go up (which they might, or maybe someone really would just do 50% of normal work... that's why working less should be a "right" which companies can't "discriminate" against)... the reason once again is that you would expect someone to consume the same amount of goods, just at a lower quality. So say that the 40% drop in income is exactly equal to the profit from an iPhone. By working less and buying a generic phone instead, they earn an extra 10% of their income in profit for their company... but they prevent 40% of their income from going to profit for another company (Apple). The net effect is that "Corporations" just lost 30% of a salary in profits while the worker received the same value (a phone).

Maybe that doesn't answer your question well, but this comment is already too long.

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

That doesn't answer my question. I understand that redistributing income - allocating income more equally - will fix the economy. That is exactly what I advocate.

My question is why are companies going to all of sudden start doing that?

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

A better question would be why are companies not using this once they learn of it. To that I have no good answer, other than the one offered in this thread.

The reason corporations would benefit from using this is higher profits.

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

Companies are forced to pay workers what the market demands. A company can't just pay some of their workers less. If they could, they would have already done that. If you pay your CEO less than the market rate, your CEO will quit and get a job elsewhere.

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

The CEO would only get paid less than the "market rate" if they worked less, and under these terms their rate would actually be higher even if their total income was lower.

So, if the CEO only does 30 hours of actual work in a week and spends the rest of their time fooling around (since it isn't the CEO's job to answer phones in customer service or whatever else needs to be done in the business), they could declare that they would prefer to take a small pay cut and spend more time away from the office without other employees feeling jealous of "special privileges" for management.

More importantly for an organization, if the CEO is sent some daily or weekly report that is actually pointless and stupid, the accelerated work week would allow all participants (CEO and whoever writes/reviews the report) to agree that the report is, in fact, stupid and that it can be gotten rid of without making anyone seem "lazy" since by working less they would be losing money after all. This is the efficiency argument.

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

Ok, so why would a CEO, or anyone else, all of a sudden start working less and take less money so that the company can use the saved money to hire others?

Socialists correctly believe that the only way to guarantee employment for everyone and to also allocate income fairly to everyone is by actually taking ownership of every company in the entire economy.

You still haven't explained how you will get people to do this.

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

Ok, so why would a CEO, or anyone else, all of a sudden start working less

I don't know, maybe they want to be able to pick their kids up from school on time or something? There are lots of reasons.

is by actually taking ownership of every company in the entire economy.

Already possible to "take control" of a single company, of course. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Workers%27_councils

Maybe the fact that this isn't more popular suggests that this doesn't leave the business with enough money to invest in expansion? The difference is that with an accelerated work week, someone might not be able to afford a bigger house or a fancier car (since they would be working less) but at least they would have an income and every worker in society would benefit from lower supply of labor, as well as the change in spending patterns that would lead to labor getting a greater share of income in the national economy.

It's difficult for developing countries to do this (raise labor prices by reducing aggregate labor supply) because manufacturing products are more mobile than services and lower qualities of infrastructure, education, etc. means they can basically only compete on labor cost, but the US is definitely in the position to do this.

You still haven't explained how you will get people to do this.

People are currently deluded into thinking that the US needs more rich people and we cannot 'afford' to tax the rich when "the economy is bad", but anyway we just encourage people to use/abuse food stamps (1/3 of eligible don't use) and so on until the middle class agrees to create jobs through the accelerated work week.

http://jobcreationplan.blogspot.com/

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

Since CEOs and others are not working less so they can pick up their kids, doesn't that show that your plan doesn't work?

Having control of a single company is not going to help much since the success of companies varies widely and you still have to compete with companies that are not allocating income based on how hard you work. The only way to allocate income fairly is to have control over the allocation of total income.

So the way to create more jobs is to get more people to use food stamps? I don't think that is going to work!

The only way to hire everyone is to invest in enough money to launch enough new businesses that hires everyone. And since private investment is not doing that, the government must step in and do it.

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

Since CEOs and others are not working less so they can pick up their kids, doesn't that show that your plan doesn't work?

Some of them are. This article mentions CFOs and CEOs: http://hbr.org/2012/05/the-rise-of-the-supertemp/ar/1

But the way many people think of work doesn't make allowances for working and earning less, and so most people don't.

and you still have to compete with companies that are not allocating income based on how hard you work.

The idea is supposed to encourage people to eliminate bureaucracy that wastes their time (and everyone else's), and generally make work, especially corporate employment, a more enjoyable experience. This can lead to having higher-quality employees for the same reason that some companies provide things like free daycare or snacks.

The change in income inequality mainly happens due to not buying frivolous things and the implications of no inflation (less people investing in financial markets). Companies that used the idea would not see a major increase in wage costs.

So the way to create more jobs is to get more people to use food stamps? I don't think that is going to work!

Someone who makes $100k per year can work less without needing to go on food stamps, or suffering any real decrease in standard of living.

The only way to hire everyone is to invest in enough money to launch enough new businesses that hires everyone. And since private investment is not doing that, the government must step in and do it.

The top 20% of income account for 60% of consumer spending: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/04/business/sales-of-luxury-goods-are-recovering-strongly.html

And they STILL take in more income than they spend or lose to taxes. If they spent all their money, we would have full employment just like if that income were distributed in your $115k/year minimum salary plan; it's just too difficult for them to spend money. Encouraging people to work less causes money to go to people who DO have things to spend it on besides luxury goods (which is what causes money to go to people who buy the $9000 dresses and still have a few million left over).

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

"Some of them are"

You are missing the point of my question.

I know that some people are working less. The question is how are you going to get enough workers, who already make enough money, to work less and to get their companies to hire new workers to make up for their lost work so that we can fully employ the 18% who are underemployed?

.

"The change in income inequality mainly happens due to not buying frivolous things"

Income inequality has nothing to do with buying frivolous things. How does not buying "frivolous" things increase the income of the bottom 50% of workers, for example, and reduce the incomes of the people at the very top?

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

I've heard it said (most recently by Paul Krugman on the Colbert show) that if the federal government simply gave enough aid to states to offset the revenue shortfalls created by the recession, enabling them to avoid the mass layoffs of teachers, firefighters, etc., we've seen over the past year (or more), our unemployment rate would be under 7% right now.

I'm just passing along what I heard, "I" didn't say this (so please do not berate me for merely sharing information), I'm not even quite sure if it's true, but I heard Krugman say this only a few days ago.

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

Of course it's true :P

And people think that states only waste 42¢ out of every dollar, compared to 51c for the federal government, which is... sort of a random fact in this case since it still isn't very likely to happen.

Job creation without higher government spending, inflation, or trade barriers: http://jobcreationplan.blogspot.com/

[-] 2 points by HempTwister (667) from Little Rock, AR 2 years ago

I am posting this here. https://www.facebook.com/WarOnWages

Anyone who pays wages benefits from unemployment. I can't see how anyone benefits from inequality.

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

This was the followup thread: http://occupywallst.org/forum/a-nonviolent-solution-to-the-political-conflict-in/

Anyway, it seemed like no one was interested in that approach.

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

'Work conservation" sounds terrible. "Work sharing" sounds much better. Who came up with "single payer", "human resource" and "consumer"? Those really suck. Words are important.

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

What about "Accelerated work week?"

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

Oops. Coming up with good titles isn't easy. 'Work conservation' sounds slackerish but I get the concept.

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

Well, if I could think of a better term I would use it haha.

But I thought it resonated nicely with things like "energy conservation" :(

Maybe people don't like conservation as much as efficiency? (High gas mileage is good, but people still prefer cars with high acceleration.)

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (28256) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

What is to say you can't have high performance and no gas use?

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

Conservation has a connotation of limiting your usage. Efficiency has a connotation of not altering your goals, just reaching them in a different and objectively better way.

You would want a car with high performance to still use gas efficiently, even if you drive in ways that don't conserve gas (racing between stoplights or something).

[-] 3 points by DKAtoday (28256) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Electric or Hydrogen or combination of both. Get rid of gasoline.

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[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (28256) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Hold your breath while you wait.

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

When a debt is owed, interest accumulates. The longer you wait to settle your obligation, DKAtoday, the more costly it will be in the end.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (28256) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

I owe nothing to a corporate shill. Derision is given freely - No charge - so you don't owe me anything either.

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

You have already admitted that you lied by calling me a corporate shill. DKAtoday. You really should apologize to the forum for that lie. Paying now will cost you less than paying later.

[-] 0 points by DKAtoday (28256) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Believe what you will - oh - wait no - excuse me - don't want to get you in trouble with your masters - Believe what your corporate masters want you too. Hate to see you hit the unemployment line for having an independent thought. I mean you do get paid so that is some money making it back into the economy even if it sucks to be you - I mean sucks to have your job.

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

You accuse me of all these things yet you offer no proof that you know anything at all about me. You are indeed a sad little Troll, aren't you?

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

Starting sentences full of insults with the word "Sorry" admits you are a LIAR, DKAtoday, but it certainly does not qualify as an apology. Try again, TROLL.

http://occupywallst.org/forum/is-anarchism-nothing-more-than-mob-rule/#comment-756926

[-] 2 points by shoozTroll (17632) 2 years ago

Why are you repeating yourself all over the forum?

Once is quite enough.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 2 years ago
[-] 1 points by JackHall (401) 2 years ago

Democrat President Franklin Roosevelt was elected 4 times: 1932, 1936, 1940, 1944. His social reforms in the New Deal have kept the economy intact despite persistent attempts by the elite to dismantle it. President Bill Clinton did two things his last year in office that are keys to the economic dilemma today: repealing Glass Steagall and signing Commodities Futures Modernization Act.

Robert Scheer vs Larry Summers

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=heM4mpfLj64&list=PL70FB84A39ACB3206&feature=plpp_play_all [right click]

In the 50 years between Roosevelt and Clinton corporations have manipulated the public in order to control the economy for their own benefit to the country’s detriment.

Once it’s started how is it stopped?

How to Brainwash a Nation

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZ8ZvYNlxiM&feature=related [right click]

[-] 1 points by riethc (1149) 2 years ago

"Then who are the harmful elements in society who oppose creating jobs for the unemployed? The answer is simple. It is the middle class who benefit from high levels of inequality and unemployment and those elements of the poor they can delude into helping them."

What you are talking about is right-wing rhetoric. Essentially, the "Right" has come to see government as a business, not as a means to uplift society. Look at Reagan. He said, "I want to get the government off your back!" which has been expanded on and worsened of the years. It's the stigma opposed to social programs.

It has nothing to do with the middle class in general, it's more about individuals' epistemological framework for analyzing society. People fall on either side of the need for big gov't argument irregardless of the amount of wealth they own.

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

Possibly (although Krugman is a liberal economist, probably the best known liberal economic right now). If his theory is wrong, we would expect challenges to it fairly quickly, so check out the peer review on it?

[-] 0 points by riethc (1149) 2 years ago

Full sentences please.

If you want for me to read Krugman, I'm going to pass. Keynesian approaches have just been prolonging the collapse, and arguably making it worse when/if the final stages of the collapse do come the USA.

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

Sure, bla, bla, bla, cry me a river, I'm passing gas right now, boy don't you wish you could sniff.

[-] 1 points by riethc (1149) 2 years ago

This is Krugman's entire economic policy:

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

Further explanation of the failure or Keynesian economics:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BRu4SnBz7TY

Not that I'm against gov't spending. I just think it has to go in places where they actually revolutionize the economy, not simply maintain a status-quo.

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

Okay, I definitely agree with that ... but so did Keynes, sort of (not that I'm necessarily a Keynesian, I mean, it's a pretty old economic theory, and Krugman's economics are very a hybridized version of Keynes' general theory anyway). Honestly, I don't really like Krugman's trade theory (which is what won him the Nobel, not his Keynesian outlook, or his liberal cheer leading).

But any rookie grad student in economics can look at the data & draw the conclusions reached by Krugman (which he espoused on the Colbert show). If congress didn't cut aid to states, they wouldn't have had to fire so many teachers, firefighters, etc., and according to the numbers (if that never happened) our unemployment rate would be under 7%.

The middle of a deep recession/quasi-depression, is not the time for austerity (and so much should be obvious, even to the economic novice). If Romney is so concerned about not emulating Europe, what he should be unwilling to emulate is Germany's neurotic obsession with fighting an inflation boogeyman which doesn't exist (and indeed the real risk is deflation, not inflation). Has it done them much good? To the contrary, their foolish policy approach has produced the exact opposite effect (the Euro has lost value, and continues to lose value).

The thing about Keynes' general theory is, it's designed for a system approximately like the one we have now, and in that context, it is an effective countermeasure to an economic downturn (and I think the evidence overwhelmingly supports this view). This is not a statement in support of the system we have now (I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be here if I was a cheer leader for the status quo), it's just to point out, Keynes was an economist, not a political theorist or philosopher.

[-] 1 points by riethc (1149) 2 years ago

Clearly, the austerity policy is about looting the population. They passed the debt from the banks to the population of the countries where those banks happen to be, or in some cases, even to banks outside of their borders. It's the main cause of the economic troubles and that doesn't take much to see that this is what the financial capital class wants. They'll pick-up the pieces after they destroy the nation states.

[-] 1 points by grapes (3038) 2 years ago

Use "regardless" instead of "irregardless."

[-] 1 points by riethc (1149) 2 years ago

Thanks

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

It isn't all of the middle class or even close to it. But when a poll shows that over a third of the population is fine with the current level of inequality, it isn't just the 1% who want things to stay the way they are.

[-] 1 points by riethc (1149) 2 years ago

You're not getting my point. I'm not disagreeing with you. I am stating why I believe it is this way.

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

I think that when a poor person, who either has a low-paying job because unemployed drives down wages or is unemployed themselves, says that they don't want the government to spend money to create jobs, delusion about whether taxes "destroy" more jobs than spending creates is more responsible for their attitude than an ideological or epistemological framework.

Around 56% of the population think that "spending more and raising taxes" would lead to growth while 37% think the opposte (http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2012/04/19/us/politics/20120419_poll_docs.html Q59). Economic models by the Congressional Budget Office and Moody's say that the 56% are right; so does a common-sense understanding based on the fact that poor people have a higher "marginal propensity to consume" which is also backed up by the US household consumer expenditure survey.

This 37% is either lying, deluded, or just severely misinformed, and that last category probably includes many poor people.

[-] 1 points by riethc (1149) 2 years ago

"This 37% is either lying, deluded, or just severely misinformed, and that last category probably includes many poor people."

That is essentially epistemology.

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

Well, when conservatives are willing to be dishonest we have no need to "negotiate" or try to convince them through logic. We just need to encourage people to use, and even abuse welfare (1/3 eligible for food stamps don't use). If poor people are still deluded and won't listen to logic then it's their fault for whatever happens; if the rich or middle class want to keep paying for food stamps via taxes/inflation they can continue ignoring OWS and avoid using the accelerated work week.

http://jobcreationplan.blogspot.com/

[-] 0 points by riethc (1149) 2 years ago

It's not that OWS is being ignored, it's that OWS has failed to do anything real and will continue to fail if it keeps on its current empty rhetoric track and protesting without purpose.

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

The fact that some people were surprised by OWS's protests suggests that it wasn't completely pointless.

Job creation without higher government spending, inflation, or trade barriers: http://jobcreationplan.blogspot.com/

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