Author Topic: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.  (Read 7076 times)

Simpleton

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #250 on: Today at 03:27:31 PM »
I do not understand how you can simultaneously argue that the intrinsic value of an hour of labor does not change based on how many dollars it earns, yet you are okay with exploding CEO pay and claim that increasing the minimum wage will cause inflation.  Enabling people to afford basic necessities of life will somehow cause inflation, but pumping trillions into the hands of the rich will not?

The value of something should be what is freely exchanged for it.

All sorts of distortions occur when you use the political process to manipulate the freely exchanged rate. Inflation, job loss, price changes, service reductions.

This is why its so muddy and difficult and interesting to discuss the outcomes of these (poor) policy enactments.

Bloop Bloop Reloaded

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #251 on: Today at 03:31:49 PM »
We can increase opportunity by better funding education and so on.

But I feel like even if we had a perfect meritocracy, you still wouldn't be happy.

Imagine if society were truly frictionless and the most talented people got the lion's share and the least talented got scraps. It may well be a similar distribution we have with incomes as today, but with no nepotism, corruption, etc.

That still wouldn't be your perfect society, would it? Because the issues with distribution of income would remain.

So you're not actually arguing for just greater equality of opportunity. You're arguing for greater equality of outcome. And I don't agree iwith the latter (other than via providing universal basic services as a safety net).

Thumbs up.

No one is heartless. We all want things done for people truly victimized in this world. We all want kids given the best opportunity possible. We all want people to receive healthcare. We can argue the shades of grey on each of those issues - but that is beside the point.

What I take issue with is the current political narrative that the problem of anyone who has a poor outcome is the fault of someone better off than them, and therefore that richer person should bear the cost. That without a doubt is the narrative in todays political climate. It leads to "give me a fish - even if I put no effort into learning how to fish" mentality.

I truly believe that the general rule in the first world (with exceptions) is that the greatest factor in your own success is your own actions.

I would agree with your last line, except that I think it's more honest to say that the three biggest factors are your own actions, your genes and your childhood environment.

We need to do everything we can to ensure equality (of outcome) in relation to the third - the childhood environment. We need to be spending way more to give each kid better and more universal tuition, healthcare, etc

The rest is up to the individual and I don't see why we need to equalise for anything else. Again, besides having a welfare safety net.


Simpleton

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #252 on: Today at 03:58:14 PM »
We can increase opportunity by better funding education and so on.

But I feel like even if we had a perfect meritocracy, you still wouldn't be happy.

Imagine if society were truly frictionless and the most talented people got the lion's share and the least talented got scraps. It may well be a similar distribution we have with incomes as today, but with no nepotism, corruption, etc.

That still wouldn't be your perfect society, would it? Because the issues with distribution of income would remain.

So you're not actually arguing for just greater equality of opportunity. You're arguing for greater equality of outcome. And I don't agree iwith the latter (other than via providing universal basic services as a safety net).

Thumbs up.

No one is heartless. We all want things done for people truly victimized in this world. We all want kids given the best opportunity possible. We all want people to receive healthcare. We can argue the shades of grey on each of those issues - but that is beside the point.

What I take issue with is the current political narrative that the problem of anyone who has a poor outcome is the fault of someone better off than them, and therefore that richer person should bear the cost. That without a doubt is the narrative in todays political climate. It leads to "give me a fish - even if I put no effort into learning how to fish" mentality.

I truly believe that the general rule in the first world (with exceptions) is that the greatest factor in your own success is your own actions.

I would agree with your last line, except that I think it's more honest to say that the three biggest factors are your own actions, your genes and your childhood environment.

We need to do everything we can to ensure equality (of outcome) in relation to the third - the childhood environment. We need to be spending way more to give each kid better and more universal tuition, healthcare, etc

The rest is up to the individual and I don't see why we need to equalise for anything else. Again, besides having a welfare safety net.

Agree 100%

I realized as I was re-reading my own post that my last point may over emphasize the role of ones own actions.

I do think it is still the biggest factor, but the others you mentioned are certainly big factors as well. Luck also plays a big role for sure.

I guess the point I was trying to make is that people need to focus more on what they can control. People should put more emphasis on improving their own circumstances rather than pointing the finger and waiting for someone else to fix it. Society should focus on enabling people to improve their own circumstances, and not simply transferring success from one group to the next.
« Last Edit: Today at 04:00:11 PM by Simpleton »

JLee

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #253 on: Today at 03:58:35 PM »
We can increase opportunity by better funding education and so on.

But I feel like even if we had a perfect meritocracy, you still wouldn't be happy.

Imagine if society were truly frictionless and the most talented people got the lion's share and the least talented got scraps. It may well be a similar distribution we have with incomes as today, but with no nepotism, corruption, etc.

That still wouldn't be your perfect society, would it? Because the issues with distribution of income would remain.

So you're not actually arguing for just greater equality of opportunity. You're arguing for greater equality of outcome. And I don't agree iwith the latter (other than via providing universal basic services as a safety net).

Thumbs up.

No one is heartless. We all want things done for people truly victimized in this world. We all want kids given the best opportunity possible. We all want people to receive healthcare. We can argue the shades of grey on each of those issues - but that is beside the point.

What I take issue with is the current political narrative that the problem of anyone who has a poor outcome is the fault of someone better off than them, and therefore that richer person should bear the cost. That without a doubt is the narrative in todays political climate. It leads to "give me a fish - even if I put no effort into learning how to fish" mentality.

I truly believe that the general rule in the first world (with exceptions) is that the greatest factor in your own success is your own actions.

Literally nobody here is making that argument.

Simpleton

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #254 on: Today at 04:06:28 PM »
We can increase opportunity by better funding education and so on.

But I feel like even if we had a perfect meritocracy, you still wouldn't be happy.

Imagine if society were truly frictionless and the most talented people got the lion's share and the least talented got scraps. It may well be a similar distribution we have with incomes as today, but with no nepotism, corruption, etc.

That still wouldn't be your perfect society, would it? Because the issues with distribution of income would remain.

So you're not actually arguing for just greater equality of opportunity. You're arguing for greater equality of outcome. And I don't agree iwith the latter (other than via providing universal basic services as a safety net).

Thumbs up.

No one is heartless. We all want things done for people truly victimized in this world. We all want kids given the best opportunity possible. We all want people to receive healthcare. We can argue the shades of grey on each of those issues - but that is beside the point.

What I take issue with is the current political narrative that the problem of anyone who has a poor outcome is the fault of someone better off than them, and therefore that richer person should bear the cost. That without a doubt is the narrative in todays political climate. It leads to "give me a fish - even if I put no effort into learning how to fish" mentality.

I truly believe that the general rule in the first world (with exceptions) is that the greatest factor in your own success is your own actions.

Literally nobody here is making that argument.

This is 100% of the political climate today.
-Reparations for historical racial injustice
-Tax the CEO's, they are stealing from the worker
-Tax the boomers, they have all the housing wealth!
-Eat the rich! We cant take enough taxes from them!
-Billionaires are exploiting the world
-Western nations exploit poor nations
-Men conspire to pay women less money

The victim narrative is very prolific. Several of these have come up in prior posts in this thread.

There is some merit in some of these claims, but it is not the best way to raise people up.

Success is not a zero sum game.

GuitarStv

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #255 on: Today at 04:13:41 PM »
I do not understand how you can simultaneously argue that the intrinsic value of an hour of labor does not change based on how many dollars it earns, yet you are okay with exploding CEO pay and claim that increasing the minimum wage will cause inflation.  Enabling people to afford basic necessities of life will somehow cause inflation, but pumping trillions into the hands of the rich will not?

The value of something should be what is freely exchanged for it.

All sorts of distortions occur when you use the political process to manipulate the freely exchanged rate. Inflation, job loss, price changes, service reductions.

This is why its so muddy and difficult and interesting to discuss the outcomes of these (poor) policy enactments.

Where do you stand on slavery?  Plenty of slave owners were freely exchanging money for slaves.  Only government imposed market limits ended up preventing the slave trade in the United States as the free market was very pro-slavery.    Seems like distortions of the free market are necessary and that striving for the freest possible market is a flawed approach.

I agree that it's muddy and difficult to discuss outcomes of policy enactments sometimes.  I disagree that they're all poor.

GuitarStv

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #256 on: Today at 04:15:16 PM »
We can increase opportunity by better funding education and so on.

But I feel like even if we had a perfect meritocracy, you still wouldn't be happy.

Imagine if society were truly frictionless and the most talented people got the lion's share and the least talented got scraps. It may well be a similar distribution we have with incomes as today, but with no nepotism, corruption, etc.

That still wouldn't be your perfect society, would it? Because the issues with distribution of income would remain.

So you're not actually arguing for just greater equality of opportunity. You're arguing for greater equality of outcome. And I don't agree iwith the latter (other than via providing universal basic services as a safety net).

Thumbs up.

No one is heartless. We all want things done for people truly victimized in this world. We all want kids given the best opportunity possible. We all want people to receive healthcare. We can argue the shades of grey on each of those issues - but that is beside the point.

What I take issue with is the current political narrative that the problem of anyone who has a poor outcome is the fault of someone better off than them, and therefore that richer person should bear the cost. That without a doubt is the narrative in todays political climate. It leads to "give me a fish - even if I put no effort into learning how to fish" mentality.

I truly believe that the general rule in the first world (with exceptions) is that the greatest factor in your own success is your own actions.

Literally nobody here is making that argument.

This is 100% of the political climate today.
-Reparations for historical racial injustice
-Tax the CEO's, they are stealing from the worker
-Tax the boomers, they have all the housing wealth!
-Eat the rich! We cant take enough taxes from them!
-Billionaires are exploiting the world
-Western nations exploit poor nations
-Men conspire to pay women less money

The victim narrative is very prolific. Several of these have come up in prior posts in this thread.

There is some merit in some of these claims, but it is not the best way to raise people up.

Success is not a zero sum game.

Which of the claims listed are without merit in your eyes?

Simpleton

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #257 on: Today at 05:09:27 PM »
Where do you stand on slavery?  Plenty of slave owners were freely exchanging money for slaves.  Only government imposed market limits ended up preventing the slave trade in the United States as the free market was very pro-slavery.    Seems like distortions of the free market are necessary and that striving for the freest possible market is a flawed approach.
I agree that it's muddy and difficult to discuss outcomes of policy enactments sometimes.  I disagree that they're all poor.

Obviously anti-slavery. That is by definition not a free exchange for all parties involved.

Also, Pretty sure its known that you win the debate when the other side resorts to essentially calling you a nazi. Poor form

Quote
Which of the claims listed are without merit in your eyes?

-Most of these claims have significant merit for SOME people, and a small amount of merit for many people.
-MANY people using these grievances to explain their positions today also have personal actions/choices which have contributed to their outcomes to a much greater extent.
-The housing wealth one for boomers I think is without any merit... I think thats just a product of interest rates.
-I also think the data is inconclusive regarding the gender pay gap - some data says its personal choices in todays generation. I think historically it was a real thing though.
« Last Edit: Today at 05:38:42 PM by Simpleton »

GuitarStv

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #258 on: Today at 05:50:02 PM »
Where do you stand on slavery?  Plenty of slave owners were freely exchanging money for slaves.  Only government imposed market limits ended up preventing the slave trade in the United States as the free market was very pro-slavery.    Seems like distortions of the free market are necessary and that striving for the freest possible market is a flawed approach.
I agree that it's muddy and difficult to discuss outcomes of policy enactments sometimes.  I disagree that they're all poor.

Obviously anti-slavery. That is by definition not a free exchange for all parties involved.

Also, Pretty sure its known that you win the debate when the other side resorts to essentially calling you a nazi. Poor form
'

I absolutely didn't call you a nazi and expected that you were not pro-slavery.  But my point stands.  The free market fully condoned and accepted slavery.  Slavery only ended when the free market was controlled, and capitalists fought against ending it.



Quote
Which of the claims listed are without merit in your eyes?

-Most of these claims have significant merit for SOME people, and a small amount of merit for many people.
-MANY people using these grievances to explain their positions today also have personal actions/choices which have contributed to their outcomes to a much greater extent.
-The housing wealth one for boomers I think is without any merit... I think thats just a product of interest rates.
-I also think the data is inconclusive regarding the gender pay gap - some data says its personal choices in todays generation. I think historically it was a real thing though.
[/quote]

Can you be a little more specific in your answer?  Who exactly is using these grievances to explain their positions today in lieu of attempting to better themself?

ender

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #259 on: Today at 06:39:58 PM »
This is 100% of the political climate today.
-Reparations for historical racial injustice
-Tax the CEO's, they are stealing from the worker
-Tax the boomers, they have all the housing wealth!
-Eat the rich! We cant take enough taxes from them!
-Billionaires are exploiting the world
-Western nations exploit poor nations
-Men conspire to pay women less money

The victim narrative is very prolific. Several of these have come up in prior posts in this thread.

There is some merit in some of these claims, but it is not the best way to raise people up.

Success is not a zero sum game.

Are you really reducing this thread to a complete strawman? "Well, no one in this thread said it. But it's the political climate!"

Why not respond to what people in this thread are actually saying vs a boogeyman argument you constructed?

Personally, I am rather disappointed you reduced 5 pages of discussion to the "victim narrative."

Is it safe for me to reduce your argument to the "heartless bastard" narrative? Where you believe the poor should starve because they are lazy or stupid?

djadziadax

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #260 on: Today at 07:11:57 PM »
This argument is useless - both sides are entrenched into talking points. That is why power matters - whoever is in power gets to implement their talking points.

I only know that even in highly taxed countries (which is the only way to solve this wealth inequality), like Germany, there are still a lot of poor people, and there are still a lot of billionares. But the social net is funded not by the rich, but by the middle class. So the flaw in the taxation argument is that the rich, if taxed enough, will be able to fund free college, free healthcare, free childcare, better infrastructure, etc.

As long as the proponents for higher taxes are willing to pay fed tax of 50% on incomes 5x the average wage

Country    Top Marginal Income Tax Rate (in %) (a)    Top Marginal Income
Tax Threshold (in Euros) (b)    Top Marginal Income Tax Threshold (expressed as a multiple of the average wage)

Germany    47.5     267,190    5.4




mckaylabaloney

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #261 on: Today at 07:37:59 PM »
I only know that even in highly taxed countries (which is the only way to solve this wealth inequality), like Germany, there are still a lot of poor people, and there are still a lot of billionares. But the social net is funded not by the rich, but by the middle class. So the flaw in the taxation argument is that the rich, if taxed enough, will be able to fund free college, free healthcare, free childcare, better infrastructure, etc.

As long as the proponents for higher taxes are willing to pay fed tax of 50% on incomes 5x the average wage

Country    Top Marginal Income Tax Rate (in %) (a)    Top Marginal Income
Tax Threshold (in Euros) (b)    Top Marginal Income Tax Threshold (expressed as a multiple of the average wage)

Germany    47.5     267,190    5.4

I'm not sure how this follows? You're saying (I think?) that people who claim that higher taxes on the rich alone could fund various social programs are wrong, and that the middle class would have to pay higher taxes too. But in support of that conclusion, you point to a country that...apparently isn't especially taxing its rich relative to the middle class? I don't know how this proves your point. The fact that Germany is funding its social programs through high income taxes on all (and not just the uber wealthy) doesn't, on its own, prove that its social programs couldn't be funded through even higher taxes on the uber wealthy. We would need a lot more information to draw that conclusion (and a lot more yet to conclude that the same thing would be true in the US).

Also, income tax is not the only opportunity to increase taxes on the wealthy. Maybe not even the most potentially lucrative one w/r/t the ultra-wealthy? I don't know what their annual incomes typically look like (compared to other taxable opportunities such as capital gains, overall wealth in the case of the proposed wealth tax, estates, etc.). Does Germany have high taxes on the wealthy in other respects, beyond income tax?

djadziadax

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #262 on: Today at 07:49:23 PM »
Longer thought:

We agree that taxation is really the only way to redistribute/transfer money from the well off to the poor through funding social support nets and eliminating cost of things like healthcare. But is the goal to eliminate poverty and working poor? Is that ever possible? Perhaps an example from Europe can illuminate the discussion.

For example Germany, known for its social protections and high standard of living, has top marginal rate of 47% on incomes starting at 5x the average wage*. That is a very broad tax base. In the US, median wage in 2019 was 51k**, so 47% tax would start at 250K. So just taxing the top earners will not cut it to have social support such as in Germany and still maintain strong economy.

*https://taxfoundation.org/top-individual-income-tax-rates-europe-2019/
*https://policyadvice.net/insurance/insights/average-american-income/

But still, Germany has not eliminated poverty. Also Germany defense budget is less than 2% (most gov revenue goes to internal spending) while the US is 15%.

https://www.dw.com/en/germanys-minimum-wage-is-barely-above-the-poverty-line/a-46797781

Of course those higher German taxes get you free healthcare, and good SS payments but there are still people living barely over the poverty line.

20% of children in Germany live in poverty....

https://www.dw.com/en/1-in-5-children-in-germany-grow-up-in-poverty/a-54260165

I do not know what policy is best, but it is clear even countries with high tax regimes have not succeeded in the quest of eliminating poverty and the issue of the working poor.

Perhaps UBI is the only way to guarantee that income of the poor is closer to the median age than to the poverty line. We have a live experiment now where stimulus money are keeping some people from going back to minimum- and low-paid jobs. UBI will be the ultimate social net, it will be immensely expensive since even in Germany high taxes are not enough to eliminate poverty.

djadziadax

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #263 on: Today at 07:54:13 PM »
I only know that even in highly taxed countries (which is the only way to solve this wealth inequality), like Germany, there are still a lot of poor people, and there are still a lot of billionares. But the social net is funded not by the rich, but by the middle class. So the flaw in the taxation argument is that the rich, if taxed enough, will be able to fund free college, free healthcare, free childcare, better infrastructure, etc.

As long as the proponents for higher taxes are willing to pay fed tax of 50% on incomes 5x the average wage

Country    Top Marginal Income Tax Rate (in %) (a)    Top Marginal Income
Tax Threshold (in Euros) (b)    Top Marginal Income Tax Threshold (expressed as a multiple of the average wage)

Germany    47.5     267,190    5.4

I'm not sure how this follows? You're saying (I think?) that people who claim that higher taxes on the rich alone could fund various social programs are wrong, and that the middle class would have to pay higher taxes too. But in support of that conclusion, you point to a country that...apparently isn't especially taxing its rich relative to the middle class? I don't know how this proves your point. The fact that Germany is funding its social programs through high income taxes on all (and not just the uber wealthy) doesn't, on its own, prove that its social programs couldn't be funded through even higher taxes on the uber wealthy. We would need a lot more information to draw that conclusion (and a lot more yet to conclude that the same thing would be true in the US).

Also, income tax is not the only opportunity to increase taxes on the wealthy. Maybe not even the most potentially lucrative one w/r/t the ultra-wealthy? I don't know what their annual incomes typically look like (compared to other taxable opportunities such as capital gains, overall wealth in the case of the proposed wealth tax, estates, etc.). Does Germany have high taxes on the wealthy in other respects, beyond income tax?

I believe you are saying that tax of 47% on anyone making more that 267K is not high enough. To me that seems quite high (not arguing against it).


Bloop Bloop Reloaded

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #265 on: Today at 08:36:06 PM »
We can increase opportunity by better funding education and so on.

But I feel like even if we had a perfect meritocracy, you still wouldn't be happy.

Imagine if society were truly frictionless and the most talented people got the lion's share and the least talented got scraps. It may well be a similar distribution we have with incomes as today, but with no nepotism, corruption, etc.

That still wouldn't be your perfect society, would it? Because the issues with distribution of income would remain.

So you're not actually arguing for just greater equality of opportunity. You're arguing for greater equality of outcome. And I don't agree iwith the latter (other than via providing universal basic services as a safety net).

Thumbs up.

No one is heartless. We all want things done for people truly victimized in this world. We all want kids given the best opportunity possible. We all want people to receive healthcare. We can argue the shades of grey on each of those issues - but that is beside the point.

What I take issue with is the current political narrative that the problem of anyone who has a poor outcome is the fault of someone better off than them, and therefore that richer person should bear the cost. That without a doubt is the narrative in todays political climate. It leads to "give me a fish - even if I put no effort into learning how to fish" mentality.

I truly believe that the general rule in the first world (with exceptions) is that the greatest factor in your own success is your own actions.

Literally nobody here is making that argument.

This is 100% of the political climate today.
-Reparations for historical racial injustice
-Tax the CEO's, they are stealing from the worker
-Tax the boomers, they have all the housing wealth!
-Eat the rich! We cant take enough taxes from them!
-Billionaires are exploiting the world
-Western nations exploit poor nations
-Men conspire to pay women less money

The victim narrative is very prolific. Several of these have come up in prior posts in this thread.

There is some merit in some of these claims, but it is not the best way to raise people up.

Success is not a zero sum game.

Which of the claims listed are without merit in your eyes?

All of them. We need a baseline level of tax to fund universal basic services but otherwise why is it germane that a CEO makes $100 trillion dollars a day while a worker makes min wage? It is what it is. You get what you can. If you're unfit in body or mind you get a safety net. As long as the processes are transparent and the rule of law applies I don't have a problem with it.

Simpleton

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #266 on: Today at 08:39:17 PM »
This is 100% of the political climate today.
-Reparations for historical racial injustice
-Tax the CEO's, they are stealing from the worker
-Tax the boomers, they have all the housing wealth!
-Eat the rich! We cant take enough taxes from them!
-Billionaires are exploiting the world
-Western nations exploit poor nations
-Men conspire to pay women less money

The victim narrative is very prolific. Several of these have come up in prior posts in this thread.

There is some merit in some of these claims, but it is not the best way to raise people up.

Success is not a zero sum game.

Are you really reducing this thread to a complete strawman? "Well, no one in this thread said it. But it's the political climate!"

Why not respond to what people in this thread are actually saying vs a boogeyman argument you constructed?

Personally, I am rather disappointed you reduced 5 pages of discussion to the "victim narrative."

Is it safe for me to reduce your argument to the "heartless bastard" narrative? Where you believe the poor should starve because they are lazy or stupid?

I will give you this point.

My argument in this post was lazy.

I was trying to sum up my position on a variety of topics in a few lines which doesn't acutally really work.

While I think my argument in this post was incomplete, and lazy, I do not think it does not apply though. I still stand by my assertion.

« Last Edit: Today at 08:47:27 PM by Simpleton »

Simpleton

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #267 on: Today at 08:45:54 PM »
All of them. We need a baseline level of tax to fund universal basic services but otherwise why is it germane that a CEO makes $100 trillion dollars a day while a worker makes min wage? It is what it is. You get what you can. If you're unfit in body or mind you get a safety net. As long as the processes are transparent and the rule of law applies I don't have a problem with it.

I think this is where "shades of grey/gray" come in.

I don't think anyone, anywhere, argues that any society does not need a safety net for people who truly cannot provide for themselves.

The point of contention is the point where that safety net provides incentive to simply not provide for yourself.

Personally, I think the safety net is way too generous to adults, and way too harsh on children.

It is not an easy problem to solve. I do not have a solution. It needs to be solved.
« Last Edit: Today at 08:48:23 PM by Simpleton »

Simpleton

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Re: Random thoughts and plans for the coming inflation.
« Reply #268 on: Today at 08:49:38 PM »
Where do you stand on slavery?

Perhaps you are not used to being called out on this form of argument, but I am calling you out on it.
The implications of your statement were pretty clear; its kind of laughable to deny it.

Poor form. Cheap points.

Also, republicans ended slavery.

We are done the discussion.
« Last Edit: Today at 09:17:22 PM by Simpleton »