Author Topic: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!  (Read 10655 times)

Blonde Lawyer

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #50 on: February 14, 2018, 08:32:17 AM »
I didn't have a chance to read all the comments but I want to make one point.  There is a big difference between getting a one time payment of $500 and a monthly payment of $500.  A one time payment will not bring the poor out of poverty or get them a place to live or better food to eat over the long term.  For that reason, it makes more sense for them to just blow the money on a luxury.  Repeat payments, however, can become part of the budget and be used to actually improve their life situation.

Dabnasty

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #51 on: February 14, 2018, 08:37:01 AM »

* A better definition is from the Guardian. "'Is the job you're doing, or applying for, one the world would be fine without?"
https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/sep/07/column-change-life-bullshit-job


By this definition I think the vast majority of jobs qualify as BS. I think for most manufacturing, sales and really any job that is part of getting a product to a consumer is one the world could not only be fine without but better. Now I should clarify that I don't think all of these jobs are bullshit but rather many of them are bullshit because we as a society overproduce and over consume. We may benefit from the manufacture of blenders but not when so many blenders are being produced that designers need to build planned obsolescence into their products to keep sales steady.

While typing this I remembered the concept of UBI was discussed at length here:

https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/welcome-to-the-forum/universal-basic-income-forced-early-retirement/

and maybe other threads as well?

Just Joe

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #52 on: February 14, 2018, 09:44:51 AM »
Did anyone document what the Bush era tax stimulus checks were used for? 

TheGrimSqueaker

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #53 on: February 14, 2018, 09:56:29 AM »
It may amuse you to note that bullshit jobs go all the way back to the feudal system and possibly into antiquity. Wealthy families, and to a lesser extent wealthy individuals, have always had entourages that contained children, elderly people, folks with learning or other disabilities who could not otherwise earn a living, and such.

Most of the pages, errand-runners, chamberpot-bringers, and court jesters at, say, the Renaissance court of King Henry VIII were not "essential" as we define it today. Nor were the oodles of professional embroiderers who put countless hours into the very labor-intensive garments worn by the upper class (Source: Great Harry by Carolly Erickson). Same goes for a substantial number of clergy. Many of the people in convents or monasteries had job duties on par with, say, Wal-Mart greeters or half the personnel at the TSA. Yet the income, which in many cases included just room, board, clothing, and an occasional coin, was enough to keep them from begging, stealing, or weighing down their families with an extra nonproductive mouth to feed.

Back then (and I think this level of common sense may be missing at the rightmost end of the political spectrum) people who were wealthy and functional understood that they were badly outnumbered, and that in order to continue living it was a pretty good idea to provide the basics at a heavily subsidized rate. The first Western society to do it on a regular scale was the ancient Romans. Mary Beard's book SPQR breaks down the economics nicely.

bacchi

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #54 on: February 14, 2018, 10:55:56 AM »

* A better definition is from the Guardian. "'Is the job you're doing, or applying for, one the world would be fine without?"
https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/sep/07/column-change-life-bullshit-job


By this definition I think the vast majority of jobs qualify as BS. I think for most manufacturing, sales and really any job that is part of getting a product to a consumer is one the world could not only be fine without but better. Now I should clarify that I don't think all of these jobs are bullshit but rather many of them are bullshit because we as a society overproduce and over consume. We may benefit from the manufacture of blenders but not when so many blenders are being produced that designers need to build planned obsolescence into their products to keep sales steady.

Yes, true, and I'd agree with that. For the android dev work I did, the world would've gone on fine without my contribution to a bar tab app. There are plenty of similar apps, and we know how to pay bar tabs, so it was ultimately a waste of labor.

Graeber's definition is probably more helpful. If truck drivers stopped driving tomorrow, would it impact our society? It would, if only because grocery stores would become bare, even though some trucks have consumer garbage on them. Same with clothing stitchers in Pakistan factories -- sure, fast fashion is a waste of resources but we all need clothes.

For UBI, we're concerned with avoiding the creation of any BS jobs simply for employment. That is, a Player Piano situation occurs and the government decides to create a modern day CCC that hires workers as...store greeters for every store. Or hires infrastructure workers where they can't use the excavator. This is driven by the belief that not working is a moral failing and people need to work, even if it's for something fucking stupid and created solely for the purpose of working.

JLE1990

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #55 on: February 14, 2018, 02:28:57 PM »
wow... that's deep bro.

I just want to take a second and point how ridiculous what you just said was. You read an extremely interesting insightful researched response, complete with citations, shedding light on a topic that is horribly misunderstood in this country. You respond like a frat bro who still uses sarcastic responses from 2008. I realize that your clickbait article was from Fox News, whose demographic is less educated than someone who watches NO news at all ( http://www.businessinsider.com/study-watching-fox-news-makes-you-less-informed-than-watching-no-news-at-all-2012-5 ) but I would expect someone on this forum to be more perceptive. You're managing to look beyond the bs that you're fed about how finances work but you just dive right into the pool of shit information about the poor like Greg Louganis? Is it because it feeds your ego? And you've 'proven' your thoughts because you have some tenants that aren't hard workers? I'm sure you're going to think that you are successful because you worked hard and if they did too then they would be on the same level. Sorry to burst your egotistical bubble but if you were born in a developed country you are already far ahead of the rest of the planet. Race, family education, family wealth, and mental/physical health all exponentially increase your chance of success before you even make single decision.

Let me guess your response:
"Your triggered"
"It's only a joke"
"I'm not privileged, I've earned everything I've gotten"


This post belongs on the wall of shame so people can laugh that you thought this was a good thing to post on this forum. Did you expect people here to make comments like on Fox News?

Quote
45% of households don't speak English
$500/mo free handouts = "I think it will make people work better"

Free stuffs and mostly illegals is going to fix the problem[...]



Quote
The Dems just want more illegal babies
(I mean he does understand that babies born here wouldn't be illegal right?)
Do you expect anyone to even take seriously a news organization whose top contributor just released an article that the Obama painting has secret sperm cells in it?
https://www.thedailybeast.com/sean-hannity-promotes-then-deletes-bonkers-obama-portrait-secret-sperm-conspiracy-theory
« Last Edit: February 14, 2018, 02:58:59 PM by JLE1990 »

JLE1990

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #56 on: February 14, 2018, 03:30:52 PM »

* A better definition is from the Guardian. "'Is the job you're doing, or applying for, one the world would be fine without?"
https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/sep/07/column-change-life-bullshit-job


By this definition I think the vast majority of jobs qualify as BS. I think for most manufacturing, sales and really any job that is part of getting a product to a consumer is one the world could not only be fine without but better. Now I should clarify that I don't think all of these jobs are bullshit but rather many of them are bullshit because we as a society overproduce and over consume. We may benefit from the manufacture of blenders but not when so many blenders are being produced that designers need to build planned obsolescence into their products to keep sales steady.

Yes, true, and I'd agree with that. For the android dev work I did, the world would've gone on fine without my contribution to a bar tab app. There are plenty of similar apps, and we know how to pay bar tabs, so it was ultimately a waste of labor.

Graeber's definition is probably more helpful. If truck drivers stopped driving tomorrow, would it impact our society? It would, if only because grocery stores would become bare, even though some trucks have consumer garbage on them. Same with clothing stitchers in Pakistan factories -- sure, fast fashion is a waste of resources but we all need clothes.

For UBI, we're concerned with avoiding the creation of any BS jobs simply for employment. That is, a Player Piano situation occurs and the government decides to create a modern day CCC that hires workers as...store greeters for every store. Or hires infrastructure workers where they can't use the excavator. This is driven by the belief that not working is a moral failing and people need to work, even if it's for something fucking stupid and created solely for the purpose of working.

Well I think the issue in that case would be the creation of ridiculous jobs not necessarily UBI itself. As a commenter pointed out, there are already programs like this such welfare and the cash type of SNAP. It seems the biggest difference UBI would make is removing the stigma attached to receiving government assistance. It seems inevitable that something like UBI will have to go into effect eventually. I agree with Elon Musk, as production by each worker continues to increase and automation removes jobs, there will come a point where UBI is necessary and reasonable. Increase in production per worker/increase in population/reduction of available jobs makes it inevitable.

EricL

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #57 on: February 14, 2018, 05:17:12 PM »
Iím pretty sure UBI will lead to poor decision making by the poor.  But potentially good decisions too.  I think itís worth trying.  God knows we spend tax dollars on stupider shit. 

Capt j-rod

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #58 on: February 14, 2018, 05:31:31 PM »
Well, now that I have been called out... I guess I am guilty of looking at multiple news outlets. I like to see the same story and see how each media outlet twists it around. Personally I can care less about a party or agenda. I do what I do and you do what you do. None of my property was given to me. I made very good business and life decisions based on sites like this and many others. I use my skills to fix up junk and turn a profit. If you think the $500 stipend will fix the world then go for it. I use my assets to help those who wish to better themselves. I provide work to those who ask. If you feel the need to appear as a PHD genius then go for it. This dumbass, fox reading, bib overall wearing, plumber will just keep on driving my pick up and buying old beat up houses. Sorry to waste your precious time.

Dabnasty

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #59 on: February 15, 2018, 07:21:53 AM »
Well, now that I have been called out... I guess I am guilty of looking at multiple news outlets. I like to see the same story and see how each media outlet twists it around. Personally I can care less about a party or agenda. I do what I do and you do what you do. None of my property was given to me. I made very good business and life decisions based on sites like this and many others. I use my skills to fix up junk and turn a profit. If you think the $500 stipend will fix the world then go for it. I use my assets to help those who wish to better themselves. I provide work to those who ask. If you feel the need to appear as a PHD genius then go for it. This dumbass, fox reading, bib overall wearing, plumber will just keep on driving my pick up and buying old beat up houses. Sorry to waste your precious time.

I can respect that you work hard and make good decisions with your money and even try to help others when you can, but what does that have to do with your opinions on human behavior? You're using anecdotal evidence to choose your position on the topic and then going out of your way to make fun because you're confident enough of your position that someone else's position is laughable.

Based on emotions I would absolutely have agreed with your assumption that those who need the money most will waste it. I grew up around kids who got free lunch and wore air Jordans and $50 t-shirts and I spent a lot of time judging but the truth is this was anecdotal evidence and chances are I only noticed the outliers, outliers tend to be more interesting to watch. Compare our anecdotal evidence to actual studies where researchers watch every individual who participates to see how the money impacts their lives. The results will be much more meaningful than our opinions formed by watching the more interesting outliers.

Not to mention the inevitable loss of jobs to automation that has become the new discussion of this thread. That is an issue that will need to be dealt with one way or another. Whether UBI is a solution or not, we need to start figuring that out now. I commend anyone who is working towards a solution to this problem. If their first attempt is unsuccessful or even misguided, I don't laugh at them and tear them down. I'm happy to see that this is happening and back to my first comment, I eagerly await the results.

TheGrimSqueaker

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #60 on: February 15, 2018, 08:24:32 AM »
Not to mention the inevitable loss of jobs to automation that has become the new discussion of this thread. That is an issue that will need to be dealt with one way or another. Whether UBI is a solution or not, we need to start figuring that out now. I commend anyone who is working towards a solution to this problem. If their first attempt is unsuccessful or even misguided, I don't laugh at them and tear them down. I'm happy to see that this is happening and back to my first comment, I eagerly await the results.

A lot of what we know about human nature has come from various large-scale social experiments. Many sounded extremely good at the time but failed due to factors that now seem obvious. But things like the Reign of Terror, Communism, or Napoleon's invasion of Russia only seem idiotic now because of what we learned from them. It may be that UBI is going to be a grand failure, but there's also a possibility that it could be a great social benefit on par with universal vaccination. Social experiments don't always turn out badly.

It seems to me that an UBI experiment, set up on a large enough scale to factor in a range of behaviors *including* the statistical outliers, might be long overdue.

I admit I've got some reservations about UBI when it comes to people who are practicing an addiction. Access to extra resources seldom changes the root cause of the addictive behavior: if it did, there would be no wealthy addicts, and we all know that isn't true. But access to money will often make the overdose process easier.

I'd also like to point out that most of our collective opinion about the deleterious moral effects of unearned money are focused on poor people as opposed to rich ones. Few of us seem to think that enjoying our own financial independence on the strength of invested assets will harm us or make us do destructive things.

OurTown

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #61 on: February 15, 2018, 02:51:48 PM »
UBI will eventually happen because of automation, it's not "if" but "when." It might be a government benefit or alternatively it might be some sort of universal dividend so that people have some money to buy shit from whatever businesses exist at that point in time.

a1pharm

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #62 on: February 15, 2018, 03:53:08 PM »
UBI will eventually happen because of automation, it's not "if" but "when." It might be a government benefit or alternatively it might be some sort of universal dividend so that people have some money to buy shit from whatever businesses exist at that point in time.

You make the assumption that there will be money to pay for UBI.  We would need laws that are hostile to corporations in order to pay for UBI.  Given that the people continue to cling to guns and religion while voting against their best interests, these laws will never come to pass.

Instead of getting pissed off and demanding more money for people who say they don't have enough, maybe we should focus on living more sustainable lives.  UBI is out of our circle of control.  Living more sustainably is directly in our control.

I say it's time to start taking control of our own lives before demanding free money from politicians.

Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of free money, too.  It's just not going to happen.  Best to focus on things that will happen instead of attaching my plans for the future to a fantasy.

Capt j-rod

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #63 on: February 15, 2018, 03:59:25 PM »
Give a man a fish he eats for the day, teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime.

mm1970

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #64 on: February 15, 2018, 04:56:47 PM »
UBI will eventually happen because of automation, it's not "if" but "when." It might be a government benefit or alternatively it might be some sort of universal dividend so that people have some money to buy shit from whatever businesses exist at that point in time.

You make the assumption that there will be money to pay for UBI.  We would need laws that are hostile to corporations in order to pay for UBI.  Given that the people continue to cling to guns and religion while voting against their best interests, these laws will never come to pass.

Instead of getting pissed off and demanding more money for people who say they don't have enough, maybe we should focus on living more sustainable lives.  UBI is out of our circle of control.  Living more sustainably is directly in our control.

I say it's time to start taking control of our own lives before demanding free money from politicians.

Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of free money, too.  It's just not going to happen.  Best to focus on things that will happen instead of attaching my plans for the future to a fantasy.
There is money for UBI, and it's not really "free".

The money exists.  It's in the pockets of the Koch brothers and their ilk, and the large multinational corporations.  The point of getting to UBI eventually, is that *all* (or most) of this money will be in the hands of very very few.

What you'll have left is a handful of people with money - doctors, nurses, maybe accountants, engineers, plumbers, and, of course, the independently wealthy.

If there are few jobs for "everyone else" and they don't pay enough to live, eventually you have 90% of the country with no money, no housing, and no food.  With the inability to live or even work for a living, desperation sets in and you'll have a revolt.  UBI will be necessary to protect the wealthy from themselves, really.  (Also: who is going to buy your stuff from your awesome companies if nobody has any money?)

I hope for sure that this type of disruption doesn't happen until I'm long dead.  We are already headed down that path though.

a1pharm

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #65 on: February 16, 2018, 06:29:56 AM »
UBI will eventually happen because of automation, it's not "if" but "when." It might be a government benefit or alternatively it might be some sort of universal dividend so that people have some money to buy shit from whatever businesses exist at that point in time.

You make the assumption that there will be money to pay for UBI.  We would need laws that are hostile to corporations in order to pay for UBI.  Given that the people continue to cling to guns and religion while voting against their best interests, these laws will never come to pass.

Instead of getting pissed off and demanding more money for people who say they don't have enough, maybe we should focus on living more sustainable lives.  UBI is out of our circle of control.  Living more sustainably is directly in our control.

I say it's time to start taking control of our own lives before demanding free money from politicians.

Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of free money, too.  It's just not going to happen.  Best to focus on things that will happen instead of attaching my plans for the future to a fantasy.
There is money for UBI, and it's not really "free".

The money exists.  It's in the pockets of the Koch brothers and their ilk, and the large multinational corporations.  The point of getting to UBI eventually, is that *all* (or most) of this money will be in the hands of very very few.

What you'll have left is a handful of people with money - doctors, nurses, maybe accountants, engineers, plumbers, and, of course, the independently wealthy.

If there are few jobs for "everyone else" and they don't pay enough to live, eventually you have 90% of the country with no money, no housing, and no food.  With the inability to live or even work for a living, desperation sets in and you'll have a revolt.  UBI will be necessary to protect the wealthy from themselves, really.  (Also: who is going to buy your stuff from your awesome companies if nobody has any money?)

I hope for sure that this type of disruption doesn't happen until I'm long dead.  We are already headed down that path though.

The USA is actually a small sliver of the world population.  Once its "middle class" can no longer buy the trinkets made by offshore factories, they will simply stop selling to us.

Throughout human history, civilizations have fallen.  It happens slowly to the big ones.  It's happening now.  Don't assume that it won't happen to us.  Don't assume the rich individuals/corporations will take pity on the US citizens and hand them free money.

It ain't gonna happen.

Best not to be delusional and think that somehow others' money will magically appear in your bank account with no work on your part.

Be realistic and get your life in order NOW in a sustainable fashion.  Your future self will thank you.

OurTown

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #66 on: February 16, 2018, 06:53:33 AM »
Dude, I will be just fine.  I don't need "free money" to fund my future.  It's likely that I will be six feet under by the time UBI arrives.

Look, robotics and automation are going to be driven by profit margins.  Company A can save beaucoup bucks by eliminating labor costs, therefore it will do so.  It's not going to not happen just because we are sitting here in 2018 and can't imagine it will happen.  It's going to happen.  First in transportation, then pretty much everywhere else.  How do you think we are going to sustain a consumer economy if 90% of the workforce no longer has an income? 

a1pharm

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #67 on: February 16, 2018, 07:17:01 AM »
How do you think we are going to sustain a consumer economy if 90% of the workforce no longer has an income?

We won't sustain this type of economy because it simply isn't sustainable.

90% of the US workforce = 190,000,000 people.

This is about 2.7% of the world's population.

Given that the US doesn't manufacture much anymore (it consumes more than it produces since 1971, and each year this "deficit" increases), the manufacturers in other countries can safely ignore the US after the value of the dollar drops, or the Chinese yen value increases (or both).

Keep in mind China has been keeping the value of its currency cheap on purpose for a long time.  US dollars will not be the dominant currency in the future.

UBI will not happen.

Get your life in order, stop buying stupid shit.  This isn't hard.

Dabnasty

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #68 on: February 16, 2018, 07:45:44 AM »
Give a man a fish he eats for the day, teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime.

Or, at least until there aren't enough fish in the sea to live on because a freezer trawler with a crew of 30 men can do the work of 1,000's of fishermen.

OurTown

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #69 on: February 16, 2018, 08:20:22 AM »
Point. Missed.  Amazing.

I get the personal responsibility routine and, in fact, I practice it.  I would submit that you won't be able to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps in 50 years or 100 years when there are no jobs.

Capt j-rod

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #70 on: February 16, 2018, 09:23:23 AM »
Fewer jobs and poor education in the wrong topics. Real life finance is not taught. It is a self study project. This is how the majority of us found this forum and MMM to begin with. If you live the way America teaches us you are doomed from day one. Debt has been advertised as wealth in our country. All dollars spend the same. Borrowed, gifted, earned, printed, saved, found, all are eligible to purchase the same product. Until you get frustrated with breaking even at best, working your ass off to do it, buying more shit thinking that it will make you happy, wondering why you can never retire, putting emergencies on a credit card, and always blaming someone else for your problems.... You will suffer the same cycle of life until you die. Many lottery winners end up broke. This is not by accident.

Start teaching people at a young age. Just because your parents are stupid with money does not mean you have to follow suit. We all found our way by being different. That's why I hang out here, no one else seems to get it. I am a social outcast in my area for not doing what everyone else does. Until you learn what to do with your money, more money will NEVER solve your problem.

NoraLenderbee

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #71 on: February 16, 2018, 11:44:23 AM »
Give a man a fish he eats for the day, teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime.

Or, at least until there aren't enough fish in the sea to live on because a freezer trawler with a crew of 30 men can do the work of 1,000's of fishermen.

Or there are still plenty of fish, but only 30 men get to catch them and the rest can't even get a spot on the pier.


I get the personal responsibility routine and, in fact, I practice it.  I would submit that you won't be able to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps in 50 years or 100 years when there are no jobs.

This. It's not about frugality. It's about how people will earn a living when the majority of them are not needed and there is no work for them. 

a1pharm

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #72 on: February 16, 2018, 12:23:12 PM »

I get the personal responsibility routine and, in fact, I practice it.  I would submit that you won't be able to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps in 50 years or 100 years when there are no jobs.

This. It's not about frugality. It's about how people will earn a living when the majority of them are not needed and there is no work for them.

UBI is not a sustainable solution to a country that doesn't have enough jobs.  Americans without prospects will have to do what other humans do in the same circumstances: immigrate.

JLE1990

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #73 on: February 16, 2018, 01:04:22 PM »
Give a man a fish he eats for the day, teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime.

You can't use the same simple philosophy that may have worked 50 years ago. The idea that if you are given money by the government it means it some how "free" are archaic, unproductive, and implies ignorance of modern economics. The U.S manufacturing sector has increased its production significantly while reducing its workforce.
http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/07/25/most-americans-unaware-that-as-u-s-manufacturing-jobs-have-disappeared-output-has-grown/

The benefits of this growth in efficiency has almost exclusively gone to the '1%.'
https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2016/07/when-gains-at-the-top-hurt-those-at-the-bottom/493070/

So you have workers that are producing, let's say 5x the product, getting just a 6.6% increase in wages and paying the same taxes.
Then the owner of that factory is producing 5x the product and experiencing an 86.6% increase in income and paying less taxes.
That increase in productivity was also likely subsidized by the American government in the form of tax breaks or direct subsidies.
https://thinkbynumbers.org/government-spending/corporate-welfare/corporate-vs-social-welfare/

If you were to use the same tax system in place when people commonly said shit about teaching fishing, we could have UBI and other services that would improve the lives of Americans. We would be the most advanced nation by nearly every metric, instead we are one of the stupidest(which is why Americans make poor financial decisions) and one of the worst industrialized nations by almost every metric.

Actually Noralenderbee lack of fish is a huge problem and it will get much, much worse in the next couple of decades. For every 6lbs of fish we pull from the oceans we discard 5lbs of it.
https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2016/feb/16/overfishing-is-as-big-a-threat-to-humanity-as-it-is-to-our-oceans

a1pharm
UBI is absolutely sustainable. Corporations would love to convince everyone that there is not enough money but that is entirely because lobbying has reduced taxes for them so dramatically(before even this latest insanity).
https://medium.com/economicsecproj/how-to-reform-welfare-and-taxes-to-provide-every-american-citizen-with-a-basic-income-bc67d3f4c2b8

Just as final semi-thought out thought, when it comes to natural resources, several countries and states(such as Alaska) take dividends that are then distributed to citizens in a form of UBI. Why do we not do this same thing with the resources that have arisen because of modern society? As mentioned in that medium article, Facebook mines us like oil fields. They take our information and sell it like a natural resource. The new technology that is allowing corporations to double or triple their profits is sourced from Americans(our info) and American workers(innovations saving on traditional business costs). This is becoming more valuable than any lump of coal. Why are we perfectly fine asking for dividends from companies taking things out of our ground for profit but no one's suggested the same thing when they are literally taking things out of our minds?
« Last Edit: February 16, 2018, 01:43:11 PM by JLE1990 »

NoraLenderbee

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #74 on: February 16, 2018, 04:19:13 PM »

I get the personal responsibility routine and, in fact, I practice it.  I would submit that you won't be able to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps in 50 years or 100 years when there are no jobs.

This. It's not about frugality. It's about how people will earn a living when the majority of them are not needed and there is no work for them.

UBI is not a sustainable solution to a country that doesn't have enough jobs.  Americans without prospects will have to do what other humans do in the same circumstances: immigrate.

ITYM "emigrate."
Where should Americans go for work? Are they hiring Americans to work in Chinese factories? How long until the robotics take over there, too? The world is not exactly undersupplied with desperate poor people.

Kyle Schuant

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #75 on: February 16, 2018, 04:48:24 PM »
I get the personal responsibility routine and, in fact, I practice it.  I would submit that you won't be able to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps in 50 years or 100 years when there are no jobs.
Well, I don't think that'll happen. This is going beyond what the forum usually discusses, but the end of the era of cheap oil will be followed by the end of cheap natural gas, and then cheap coal. The energy base just isn't there to automate everything. "Yeah but electric -". Alas, no. You still have to mine and refine things, and fossil fuels are still necessary chemically - for example, natural gas for fertiliser, oil for pesticides, and coal for making steel. We used essentially half of the world's resources just to give freeways and cars and PCs and all that just to the Western world, if we try to do that with India and China too, and to take it a step further with massive lithium batteries and the like - it's just not going to happen.

There are, alas, limits to growth. I realise that this is heresy these days, but there it is.

As well, all this shit costs effort and money, and in many places the labour is cheaper. Have a look some time at the shipbreaking they do in places like Bangladesh. They're using human power to pull apart massive ships, I mean ropes and pulleys for 20 tonne sections of steel. Because the labour of 100 Bangladeshis is cheaper than running a crane. Thanks to the ideology of free trade, this will remain true for many things.

At most what will happen is that we'll have cities of elites all congratulating themselves on tooling around in electric self-driving cars while they go to their jobs as a "social media influencer", waving to the security guard as they pass the gates, outside the gates are waiting all the people who live in the slums outside the city and come in each day to be maids, prostitutes and street sweepers. And if you think this can't happen in the Western world, then you really need to visit a place like Dehli and walk around a bit.

We just don't have the resources for everything to be automated for everyone. Sorry. So either the automation won't happen, or it'll happen but for a tiny minority while everyone else lives in a slum.

JLE1990

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #76 on: February 16, 2018, 05:07:34 PM »
I get the personal responsibility routine and, in fact, I practice it.  I would submit that you won't be able to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps in 50 years or 100 years when there are no jobs.
Well, I don't think that'll happen. This is going beyond what the forum usually discusses, but the end of the era of cheap oil will be followed by the end of cheap natural gas, and then cheap coal. The energy base just isn't there to automate everything. "Yeah but electric -". Alas, no. You still have to mine and refine things, and fossil fuels are still necessary chemically - for example, natural gas for fertiliser, oil for pesticides, and coal for making steel. We used essentially half of the world's resources just to give freeways and cars and PCs and all that just to the Western world, if we try to do that with India and China too, and to take it a step further with massive lithium batteries and the like - it's just not going to happen.

There are, alas, limits to growth. I realise that this is heresy these days, but there it is.

As well, all this shit costs effort and money, and in many places the labour is cheaper. Have a look some time at the shipbreaking they do in places like Bangladesh. They're using human power to pull apart massive ships, I mean ropes and pulleys for 20 tonne sections of steel. Because the labour of 100 Bangladeshis is cheaper than running a crane. Thanks to the ideology of free trade, this will remain true for many things.

At most what will happen is that we'll have cities of elites all congratulating themselves on tooling around in electric self-driving cars while they go to their jobs as a "social media influencer", waving to the security guard as they pass the gates, outside the gates are waiting all the people who live in the slums outside the city and come in each day to be maids, prostitutes and street sweepers. And if you think this can't happen in the Western world, then you really need to visit a place like Dehli and walk around a bit.

We just don't have the resources for everything to be automated for everyone. Sorry. So either the automation won't happen, or it'll happen but for a tiny minority while everyone else lives in a slum.

What makes you think we don't have the resources to support the world? Food in the world was supposed to run out in the '60s. Until one guy created a hybrid wheat and exponentially increased the amount of food an acre can produce. The efficiency of renewable energy has similarly increased by massive leaps. If we were to put even more research and focus on wind, solar, and hydro(this is exactly what will happen as the potential profits will be worth it in an energy crisis) we would eventually only use about 30% of current fuel costs. This would give us enough fossil fuels to last into the next century and time to invent jet engines (9.7% of fossil fuel produced) and new materials to replace plastic(19.7%). Pavement, non-consumable, and lubricants make up just 2 of the 19million barrels of oil American consumes each day.

Kyle Schuant

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #77 on: February 16, 2018, 06:51:58 PM »
Yeah, that's the other part of the modern religion of progress, that technology will continue improving forever. That's a statement of faith. It's the equivalent of seeing your income declining, digging into your savings, and saying, "well, something will come up, it always does."

Jobs aren't disappearing in the West because they're going to robots, they're disappearing because they're going to Chinese and Indians on $150 a month living in dormitories not allowed to go out at night. Looking at what's happened in Cape Town, Detroit or Shepparton - this is a class issue, so many people don't get it. That's why they're so surprised when fruit loops get elected, while we're considering whether to get a solid 5% on this investment or a risky 7% on another, whether to get the $50,000 hybrid or the $60,000 electric, there are people who not only have never had a job, but their parents never had a job, and the electricity isn't reliable, or the tap water, the house next door has been cleaned out for its copper and aluminium, the other house is full of meth addicts, and they're not sure if they can afford dinner tonight.

It's like the other discussion here on minimum wage: all the people not on minimum wage are agreed that it shouldn't be raised. In part this is because the forum is American-dominated, and in America if you're wealthy it's because of your hard work and virtue, your parents never gave you anything (except shelter, good food, a private school education, and a place to stay rent-free till you're 30), and if you're poor it's all your fault. With this ideology, it's natural that people will be against raising the minimum wage or having a UBI. "But they don't deserve it, not like me." And this is probably why we like to think of poor people as deserving their poverty: because if they don't deserve their poverty, then maybe we don't deserve our wealth? Bit of a blow to the self-esteem, eh?

We are not going to have flying cars, colonies on Mars, all 7.5 billion of us tooling around in Teslas, and robots doing all the jobs. It's not going to happen. We just don't have enough resources - it's not just oil or whatever. This article is a decent start to looking at these questions - http://www.theoildrum.com/node/3086. But those hungry people may get angry.

It's not well-known, but the first work injury insurance scheme in the world was in Prussia under Bismarck, who was very, very conservative. But his reasoning was, "If we do not give them a few crumbs from our table, they may decide to seize the whole loaf." A UBI's a few crumbs.

We like to believe in endless growth because of the poor; because if the economy doesn't grow forever, then the only way for the poor to get richer is for them to take some of our wealth. We don't like this idea. But as Bismarck said, if you don't give them some crumbs they may seize the whole loaf. A decent healthcare system, a UBI, at heart these are conservative policies - the wealthy class sacrifices some of its wealth to try to keep the rest safe. 
« Last Edit: February 16, 2018, 09:04:30 PM by Kyle Schuant »

one piece at a time

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #78 on: February 20, 2018, 01:55:57 PM »
https://ourworldindata.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/World-Poverty-Since-1820.png


...let me know where you think the inflection point will be.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2018, 01:57:43 PM by one piece at a time »

Kyle Schuant

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #79 on: February 20, 2018, 11:18:32 PM »
I can't say. I think the whole system will last longer than is commonly supposed among people talking about peak oil and so on. But countries and systems do collapse, like Hemingway's "way you go bankrupt... slowly at first, the suddenly all at once." The Soviet Union comes to mind. But the various European empires are another example.


Collapse is a process of centuries. No Roman looked out their window one day and said, "hey, where'd the empire go?" There are long periods of stagnation with sudden drops, and everyone saying, "well this is just temporary, things will pick up soon." Change, both good and bad, is often talked about for years and then happens surprisingly suddenly.


It's trivial to look at how much oil - or coal, or aluminium, or whatever - the Western countries consume per capita, then multiply that by the population of China and India and so on, and realise we'd need several times as much of those resources as we're currently producing. And it's just not possible.


What it comes down to is that we can't have infinite growth on a finite planet. At some point we come up against limits; as I said, later than the peakers usually suppose, but quicker than most here would suppose.


I would note, however, that your graph is of "absolute poverty", which isn't defined on the graph, but I assume it's one of those "less than two dollars a day" sorts of things. We won't necessarily have more people living in that sort of poverty, but we will have less people living in luxury. And that includes most of us - certainly anyone who's FIREd. I mean, "retirement" is a relatively new idea in history, and relies on a huge energy surplus...

mm1970

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #80 on: February 21, 2018, 11:12:17 AM »
Dude, I will be just fine.  I don't need "free money" to fund my future.  It's likely that I will be six feet under by the time UBI arrives.

Look, robotics and automation are going to be driven by profit margins.  Company A can save beaucoup bucks by eliminating labor costs, therefore it will do so.  It's not going to not happen just because we are sitting here in 2018 and can't imagine it will happen.  It's going to happen.  First in transportation, then pretty much everywhere else.  How do you think we are going to sustain a consumer economy if 90% of the workforce no longer has an income?
+1

Nevermind about my "future self", my "current self" has a NW of over $2M.  I think.  Haven't checked since the last stock market dip.

Likewise, crazy health issues, addictions, or disasters aside, both my kids will be "just fine".

But I'm ALREADY seeing desperation in my rural home town, an area where people are KNOWN for their strong work ethic - because there are no jobs.  A few people have adjusted, but many have not.

one piece at a time

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #81 on: February 21, 2018, 05:36:50 PM »
I would note, however, that your graph is of "absolute poverty", which isn't defined on the graph, but I assume it's one of those "less than two dollars a day" sorts of things. We won't necessarily have more people living in that sort of poverty, but we will have less people living in luxury. And that includes most of us - certainly anyone who's FIREd. I mean, "retirement" is a relatively new idea in history, and relies on a huge energy surplus...

It is defined on the graph, but your assumption was correct anyway.

The world population is stabilizing; metals are recyclable; and renewable energy is growing. I'm going to stay positive.

SwordGuy

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #82 on: February 21, 2018, 07:05:15 PM »
We need tariffs based on labor and environmental protections.

Want to pollute your country making stuff?   It will cost a big tariff to get it into our country.

Want to treat your workers like dirt?  Ditto.

Conversely, if your labor and environmental protections are better than ours (as practiced, not written, by both parties),  a tax is placed on domestic producers.

a1pharm

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #83 on: February 22, 2018, 07:42:06 AM »
We need tariffs based on labor and environmental protections.

Want to pollute your country making stuff?   It will cost a big tariff to get it into our country.

Want to treat your workers like dirt?  Ditto.

Conversely, if your labor and environmental protections are better than ours (as practiced, not written, by both parties),  a tax is placed on domestic producers.

This would incentivize domestic companies to pollute our country and treat our workers poorly.  Remember: the US is small compared to the rest of the world.  If we stop importing goods, our US dollar literally can buy less than it used to.  This literally devalues our currency in the world market.

The Donald imposed a 30% tariff on imported solar panels.  These panels' production creates pollution in the manufacturing country.  By imposing this tariff, USA buyers install LESS solar and consume MORE fossil fuels.  It also will result in more domestic pollution if US companies start to produce them en masse.

Tariffs are dumb.  I understand why they exist, but they are a short term "solution" to a long term problem.

Dabnasty

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #84 on: February 22, 2018, 09:34:51 AM »
We need tariffs based on labor and environmental protections.

Want to pollute your country making stuff?   It will cost a big tariff to get it into our country.

Want to treat your workers like dirt?  Ditto.

Conversely, if your labor and environmental protections are better than ours (as practiced, not written, by both parties),  a tax is placed on domestic producers.

This would incentivize domestic companies to pollute our country and treat our workers poorly.  Remember: the US is small compared to the rest of the world.  If we stop importing goods, our US dollar literally can buy less than it used to.  This literally devalues our currency in the world market.

The Donald imposed a 30% tariff on imported solar panels.  These panels' production creates pollution in the manufacturing country.  By imposing this tariff, USA buyers install LESS solar and consume MORE fossil fuels.  It also will result in more domestic pollution if US companies start to produce them en masse.

Tariffs are dumb.  I understand why they exist, but they are a short term "solution" to a long term problem.
I don't necessarily agree with the tariff recommendation either but your example of the solar panel tariff is an exception, not the rule. Tariffs on products that could provide long term benefit to the environment may be counterproductive but most products are not consumed for the purpose of environmental benefit, they're just consumed.

The difficulty I can't get around with tariffs is that you can make the argument that the party you want to pay the price will pay it and in theory tariffs will accomplish whatever you want them to. Unfortunately it's difficult to predict how markets and manufacturers will actually react, especially when you consider things will change gradually over a number of years, not all at once.


Capt j-rod

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Re: Trickle Up Economics at it's finest!
« Reply #85 on: February 22, 2018, 10:30:35 AM »
Tariffs and penalties rarely have the outcomes that their makers intend. That being said, the huge influx of cheap Chinese shit has made America in to the hyper consumer capital of the world. If items weren't so cheap then the consumer would take better care of what they own and not buy as much junk that they don't need. I still have my dad's antique steel toy car. It was his only one. He has purchased and showered my kids with more plastic cars and trash than anyone. We as a nation have failed to see that part of what made us so great was the items that we were without that we lusted for. That was part of the drive to make more money to afford what we couldn't afford growing up. If they do use tariffs then part of it should be used to box up the broken cheap plastic shit and take it back to the country of origin and let them deal with the waste. Landfills in America could have easily held the trash generated by it's own resources, but look at how much trash is shipped in for us to handle!
Government cash and prizes can only come from the working class population and property owners. Rich people don't pay taxes and never will (read rich dad poor dad)... Cash and prizes handouts are a slap in the face and a penalty only dealt to the working class Americans. Excuse me while I go get my fire retardant suit and helmet for the flames of hell that are about to come my way.