Wealth Distribution

Archived discussion from Toril-2.
Sarvis
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Postby Sarvis » Wed Dec 29, 2004 10:04 pm

Ashiwi wrote:I know I'm going to regret saying anything here, but I just thought I'd point out that this logic doesn't have anything to do with "facts," as it's speculation based on personal experience, which is purely subjective.


Granted, you've got me there. Though it is technically a fact that I can name more franchises in my area than non-franchises.

Just because you can't name the locally owned businesses doesn't mean there aren't a lot of them. I just got off the phone with a fellow in the Community Development Agency here in Oklahoma City, and I was disappointed to find out that the general ownership of a business isn't part of the local business census. In the area I live in, however, there's probably fifteen to twenty locally owned businesses to every chain outlet... that I can see on first glance... and that's being generous towards the chains. That does not include businesses which typically aren't visible to the naked eye, such as appliance repair, music lessons, and other such businesses run from the individual's home. If you live in an upscale market, that number's going to change, with the chain business numbers growing (for instance, around a shopping mall, or along the business strip that follows the expressway).


All started by people with no money at all too, I'm sure.

There's a nice little pizza restaurant around the corner from my apartment which has some of the best pizza I've ever had. It was started by a couple of ex-Pappa John's delivery drivers who disagreed with the company's business practices and decided to strike out on their own. Perhaps they took out a small business loan, which would support your 'it takes money to make money' statement, but if you ask them, they'll definitely tell you their dream started before they had any money to close the deal. Maybe they're not wealthy yet, but that leads to your next statement...


What does dreaming have to do with anything? Everyone dreams, Corth just seems to think you can turn that dream into reality by working a few extra hours a day and saving up.

How are you defining wealth? Do you have to be able to set aside an untouched million dollars in order to be wealthy? Do you have to have a certain amount of assets in the bank at the end of the fiscal year?


I'm not necessarily defining, or trying to define wealth here. More to the point is that people who have extra money tend to accumulate more extra money, while people who are struggling like me tend to remain struggling or become even worse off over time. Corth takes it for granted that it is a Good Thing(tm) that Bill Gates has billions of dollars that he has no real use for other than gaining even _more_ money, while I see people struggling to even buy medicine for their children who can't even be the consumers Bill depends on for his fortune.

In comparison to how he began, Corth's grandfather ended up very wealthy. As for Corth's student loans for his education... he had to apply for those loans, so technically his dream started before he had money. Certainly, our government had to have the money for him to make money, and people had to pay taxes for the government to have that money, and you can devolve into arguments like that to prove any kind of point you wanted... even proving that every success today relies on the development of the first economy using rocks and twigs. That's kind of a given, isn't it? Isn't Corth's point more than you don't have to be wealthy to become more wealthy than you are?


The point here isn't that everything depends on something before it... well, in a way it is. That is part of what I think Corth is missing actually.

The point I was making is that Corth is pretty strongly against "socialist" policies that would take "his" money and redistribute it to those who might need it more. Yet he has no problem whatsoever benefitting from those kinds of policies himself. In fact, Republicans in congress are even now considering ending the student loan subsidy that is keeping his loan rates so low! He's complaining about 28 years? How would he feel about 30 or 40 years? Of course he's safe since I don't think they want to make it retroactive... (So am I thank god!)


I definately got distracted by that whole Grandfather thing, sice Corth basically refused to even argue in good faith at that point. I couldn't find numbers myself, but I'm willing to be that we would find it was easier to start a business back than than it is now. Or at least easier to start a succesful one!

However the comparison between Corth's grandfather and Corth is this:

Grandfather:

Worked 18 hours a day to afford his own business.

Corth:
Borrowed other people's money to start his own business, then tells other people they should just work harder and it'll all work out.


I'm sure that's probably all I'm going to post here. Feel free to flame me all you want,


I generally don't flame people. Teflor and Ambar have earned it repeatedly, but I am pretty sure I haven't flamed anyone else in this thread. I did call Corth a hypocrite, but I stand by that as a valid description of his actions regarding student loans while telling me to stop expecting "handouts."

but honestly Sarvis, you're aggressive and hateful on the BBS, and then you wonder why people jump on you, when you seem to encourage it. You thrive on conflict, letting each disagreement build you up farther until you're fairly well frothing. I'm not very apt at debate, and I'll be the first to admit that, but there's no way I'd tackle you in a debate, because you tend to split hairs, argue inanities, take absolutely everything out of context if it suits your point, and then on top of it all, you resort to name-calling, chest-beating and crying...


Where'd I name call now? Or cry? Not even sure what you mean by chest-beating...

Can I get a little vehement at times? Yes, but that _mostly_ happens when someone is appearing deliberately dense and either offering up a completely inane argument or just repeating themself and saying I'm wrong. Such as when Teflor started responding to every point people made with just one swear-word. (This is a large part of why I no longer care if I flame him.)


and then you make sure everybody understands exactly how much more mature you are than everybody else. I get the feeling that in a real debate, you'd be the one covering the cameras in spittle, right before jumping the podium and taking a swing at your opponent.


Really? Other than Ambar who have I made that claim to now? I stand by it too, since I don't feel some need to wander through threads telling people to stop enjoying their discussion because I don't like it.

At least _you_ added to the discussion, tried to take a stance and add to the discussion. All Ambar did was tell me to shut up. I apologize if you think I react unkindly to such things, but I see no reason to stand for it.


In fact, when people are being reasonable and actually trying to take part in discussion, rather than call me out or just act dumb, things go quite smoothly in general. Go read the end of that gay marriage thread, Sephraem and I finished that discussion up with almost perfect civility.

Okay, so you like a good debate... or at least a frenzied one. If that's the case, then surely you realize that you're posting in a public forum, and you should expect public comment. If you don't want public comments, then the obvious answer is to take it to a private forum... but you don't, you continue to make a spectacle of yourself in public, which logically leads one to assume that you seek the confrontation, creating a situation in which you can feel free to insult others all you want in the name of a cause which you create. If you just want a good bout of name-calling, why didn't you say so?


Again you need to point out where I am hurling all these insults...

And I don't mind public comments on the topic at all. But two people trolling through every thread I take part in and insulting me or trying to bait me is going to get a reaction. Neither of them are taking part in this thread in any meaningful way, that seems pretty clear to me.

Well okay, it's your thread, go for it... but stating your maturity level after resorting to name-calling isn't doing a whole lot for your credibility.


I believe the only name calling I did in this thread was directed at Ambar, who entered this thread specifically to call me a moron. I responded in kind.




If you feel like responding to nothing else at least answer this please:

Did this post seem overly vehement, confrontational, aggressive or hateful to you?
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Postby Sarvis » Wed Dec 29, 2004 10:34 pm

Corth wrote:I'd like to also address your point about wage growth being stagnant. Your statement is more or less true... currently. But it means nothing at all in the context of this debate about wealth redistribution.

The job market, like any other market, is subject to the economic law of supply and demand. When the supply of competent workers looking to sell their time (looking for a job) increases, it stands to reason that employers will enjoy the opportunity to pay less for that time. Conversely, in a situation where competent workers are in short supply, or where business has a larger than normal appetite for more workers, employers will have to pay more.

In the context of the job market, in macro terms, supply and demand are determined by many different factors. Supply is often governed by demographic trends such as population growth and migration. Demand will often be determined by the health of the economy as a whole. However, these factors are not exclusive.

The primary reason that the US job market is now a buyer's market is that technological innovations have made many industries a lot more efficient, lessening demand for additional workers. One important manifestation of this phenomenon is outsourcing. For instance, with advances in VOIP technology, it now makes a lot more economical sense in many cases to hire foreign workers to staff call centers. Thats just one of many examples and reasons why technology has lowered the demand for US workers. What is essentially happening is that some US workers are being replaced by and as a result of technology, which is slowing job growth and creating a larger pool of qualified unemployed workers than would otherwise exist.

This doesn't necesarily mean that the job market will always be in favor of employers. Not long ago it was the other way around. During the late '90s, internet companies were having bidding wars for qualified job applicants. At some point, the efficiencies introduced by new technology to the current market will run their course, and the only way businesses will be able to grow is by hiring new workers. As qualified workers become more demanded, their wages will grow accordingly, since they will be able to go elsewhere if not paid sufficiently.

Now, you make the point that the economic recovery has not resulted in increased jobs and wages, which I have conceded. But the health of the economy, as I hope I demonstrated, is not the only factor that weighs upon the job market. If anything, the economic recovery has allowed us to retain the status quo. Now think about it logically. If you increase how much it costs for businesses to hire workers, what will happen? Their appetite for workers will decrease. There is nothing to be taken on faith here. If some bright liberal like yourself were to get elected and raise payroll taxes, we would be in a much worse position than we are now.

Corth


Yeah, forgot to go back and read this one. There's not much I can disagree with here either...

However, with supply and demand being the primary factor that motivates hiring and wages why should the amount of profit a company is making affect that? In other words, if corporate taxes were increased but _demand_ for workers was the same wouldn't they still need to hire people? (Demand for workers obviously being dependant on demand for the products being produced...)

Honestly I'm not even clear on why it's regarded as a Good Thing(tm) for a company to have profit. It seems like if a company has excess money it hasn't used it's resources very well... I mean, shouldn't any "profit" have been used along the way for research or increasing efficiency or (god forbid!) lowering pollution?
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Postby Ambar » Wed Dec 29, 2004 11:39 pm

See, in my neck of the woods .. discussions dont end up in argument ... they either end up with nods and beers, or end up with people agreeing to disagree ...

are you SURE you arent my ex husband?? you sound JUST like him!! arguments for the sake of argument and calling it communication .. whee!

once again, what is it that you do for a living? or are you purposely dodging the question (since you think everyone else dodges YOUR questions)

*smile*
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Postby Corth » Thu Dec 30, 2004 12:32 am

Sarvis:

I don't really see the point of continuing to debate over whether or not you can make it in this country without being born into money. As far as I'm concerned, the question isn't really whether or not its possible... of course it is. Off the top of my head I can name two succesful businesses started by normal Joe Shmoes who also happen to be Sojourn alumni: Zazzle.com, and Everquest.

I think the better question is whether or not the opportunity for someone with nothing to make something of themself has decreased over time. I think you will agree with me when I say that it has. We will, of course, come nowhere near seeing eye to eye on the reason. I would suggest that increased governmental intervention over the past hundred or so years is starting to take its toll. You would probably suggest the exact opposite.

Does this fairly summarize our positions on the matter?

Corth
Having said all that, the situation has been handled, so this thread is pretty much at an end. -Kossuth

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Postby Imis9 » Thu Dec 30, 2004 12:47 am

Actually, I think you are misreading things Sarvis. Yes, the flow of money helps to make its distribution less concentrated, but the big question is the source of the money flows. In economics, velocity of money, the amount of movement of a single dollar, is one of the most important factors in the health of an economy. The movement is that single dollar being spent on more and more things as it flows from one person to another. It gains velocity from moving within the economy much more than it does by government confiscation of that money and the inherent inefficiencies with the government.

Also, all of the folks talking about the American dream are right. Now you can't aim for one of the top franchises when you are starting out. Different franchises have different starting requirements. I believe that things like Subway and some of the lesser known franchises are the cheapest ones. Let's say you can't afford the 50 or 70 grand to do one yourself. Have you thought about pooling your money with partners? Hell, you look at immigrants and you see that often they will pool their money in order to start a business.

Also, you show a definite lack of understanding in how a corporation works in talking about taxes. I have news for you, corporations don't actually pay any taxes. Now before you go wild let me explain. All companies have certain profit margin targets and expectations. If you raise taxes on a company, that is just an expense on their income statement. In order for that company to maintain their profit margin, they simply raise the prices that consumers pay. Therefore, a tax hike on companies is actually a tax on the consumer.

Basically, you seem to lack the ability to understand how greed is a primary motivator for all or at least most people. It is the reason we work and can't simply sit on the mud all the time. Stop being a pessimist!

Imis

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Postby Imis9 » Thu Dec 30, 2004 12:59 am

By the way, excess money that a company has that doesn't go to acquistions or research and development is called a dividend to the shareholders.

Imis

"A pessimist is one who makes difficulties of his opportunities; an optimist is one who makes opportunities of his difficulties."
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Postby Sarvis » Thu Dec 30, 2004 6:52 am

Corth wrote:Sarvis:

I don't really see the point of continuing to debate over whether or not you can make it in this country without being born into money. As far as I'm concerned, the question isn't really whether or not its possible... of course it is. Off the top of my head I can name two succesful businesses started by normal Joe Shmoes who also happen to be Sojourn alumni: Zazzle.com, and Everquest.

I think the better question is whether or not the opportunity for someone with nothing to make something of themself has decreased over time.


I wasn't saying it is impossible, I was saying that it's harder than it used to be.

So yes, we agree on that.


I think you will agree with me when I say that it has. We will, of course, come nowhere near seeing eye to eye on the reason. I would suggest that increased governmental intervention over the past hundred or so years is starting to take its toll. You would probably suggest the exact opposite.

Does this fairly summarize our positions on the matter?

Corth


Not so much that I would suggest the "opposite," I am not trying to say more government intervention would make it easier for people to succeed. I think what I am getting at is that corporations and wealthy people have grown so much in power and wealth that they tend to squeeze other people out.

Another main point I was making is that people without money are not automatically inferior, nor to they choose to be poor as so many claim. Moreover when you try to tell me anyone can become wealthy just by working a few extra hours and saving up to start their own business that seems very much like saying people choose to be poor, even if you don't mean it to.

That attitude infuriates me, since so many people I know have struggled so much just to get by in life.



But other than that a decent summary.
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Postby Sarvis » Thu Dec 30, 2004 6:54 am

Imis9 wrote:By the way, excess money that a company has that doesn't go to acquistions or research and development is called a dividend to the shareholders.

Imis

"A pessimist is one who makes difficulties of his opportunities; an optimist is one who makes opportunities of his difficulties."
-- Reginald B. Mansell


Which is essentially people earning money without doing any actual work...

And here people keep telling me you need to work hard to make money! ;)


EDIT: I missed your longer posst somehow, but I gotta get ready for work. Reply coming tomorrow!

Ambar wrote:See, in my neck of the woods .. discussions dont end up in argument ... they either end up with nods and beers, or end up with people agreeing to disagree ...

are you SURE you arent my ex husband?? you sound JUST like him!! arguments for the sake of argument and calling it communication .. whee!

once again, what is it that you do for a living? or are you purposely dodging the question (since you think everyone else dodges YOUR questions)

*smile*




Yeah, I could point out that argument can actually mean the same thing as debate... but then I rememembered that words only mean what _you_ think they mean, not what they actually mean.


And no, I wasn't dodging the question. I just forgot. I generally don't dodge things. In fact I went back half a page to answer one of Corth's posts I had missed!

I do data entry at FedEx.

I'm sure you want to make the point that I must not be very popular at work because I argue so much. I actually am pretty popular at work, where we only have small occasional debates.

Have you noticed that it's basically just you complaining about my style? The actual people I am debating with haven't complained, nodded at you in agreement or anything. Ok, you got Ashiwi in on it this time and Arilin before...

Maybe it's just people who have names starting with 'A' are oversensitive?
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Postby Corth » Thu Dec 30, 2004 9:01 am

Sarvis..

There are lots of ways to make money. Sometimes you sell your time by working a job. Sometimes you sell a good or a service. Sometimes you simply inherit it or win the lottery. :)

Theres nothing wrong with shareholders earning money without doing any 'actual work'. They are putting their money at risk (earned, inherited, won, whatever) by investing in a business, with the expectation that their investment will appreciate. Of course, often enough, their investment in fact depreciates in value. But if nobody ever took on the risk of investing in businesses with the expectation of making a profit we would all be busy with our subsistance farming rather than having this interstate/international debate. :)

Corth
Having said all that, the situation has been handled, so this thread is pretty much at an end. -Kossuth



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Postby Ambar » Thu Dec 30, 2004 10:34 am

Sarvis wrote:I do data entry at FedEx.

I'm sure you want to make the point that I must not be very popular at work because I argue so much. I actually am pretty popular at work, where we only have small occasional debates


no, actually YOU just assume I was going to say that .. maybe I was just curious what you do? I remember a while ago you bitching about being underpaid and working second shift ... and it was all the government's fault

I have no doubt your offline persona is different than your online one, typically this is the case .. people are generally NICE in person and general buttheads online

Noone is saying you shouldn't be allowed to argue ... a healthy argument is good once in a while .. what I am essentially saying is .. that you argue and argue and argue the same WRONG point without saying anything different ..

you assume its everyone else that is dense and not you
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Postby teflor the ranger » Thu Dec 30, 2004 10:39 am

Sarvis wrote:
teflor the ranger wrote:Sarvis, I was talking about the class system. You see the class system, but not the class mobility.


Once again you fail to check your facts before spouting off.



No, no, you really do fail to see it.
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Postby Sarvis » Thu Dec 30, 2004 5:16 pm

Corth wrote:Sarvis..

There are lots of ways to make money. Sometimes you sell your time by working a job. Sometimes you sell a good or a service. Sometimes you simply inherit it or win the lottery. :)


Had a nasty thought about profit on the way home today. Profit is basically the gap between the actual cost of producing a product and the price it is sold at. (Yeah, I know... simple and basic but...)

So of course you increase profit by keeping wages (production) low and sale prices as high as you can.

In other words the whole stock market is a scheme to take money away from people who are lower to middle class and give it to people in the upper or upper middle class without them having to actually work.

Nike should, for instance, probably be able to sell shoes for around $5-$10 dollars a pair. Instead they go for $50+, and the money your average poor family pays for shoes goes to already "wealthy" investors. Meanwhile companies constantly act to keep wages down to increase profits, so that same family also has less money to buy shoes with in the first place!

Theres nothing wrong with shareholders earning money without doing any 'actual work'. They are putting their money at risk (earned, inherited, won, whatever) by investing in a business, with the expectation that their investment will appreciate. Of course, often enough, their investment in fact depreciates in value. But if nobody ever took on the risk of investing in businesses with the expectation of making a profit we would all be busy with our subsistance farming rather than having this interstate/international debate. :)

Corth


That's odd, it seems like there were technological innovations long before a stock market was invented. In fact, doesn't the government fund research purely for the sake of research with our tax dollars? I find the claim that there would be no innovation without investment to be a little suspicious.

In fact, couldn't a company which has a huge markup on it's prices simply use their profits directly for research? Shouldn't they actually be earning less money by the act of sharing their profits with investors rather than just using all of it to improve their business? I mean, if investors are _making_ money on the deal then someone has to be losing it right?
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Postby Sarvis » Thu Dec 30, 2004 5:35 pm

Imis9 wrote:Actually, I think you are misreading things Sarvis. Yes, the flow of money helps to make its distribution less concentrated, but the big question is the source of the money flows. In economics, velocity of money, the amount of movement of a single dollar, is one of the most important factors in the health of an economy. The movement is that single dollar being spent on more and more things as it flows from one person to another. It gains velocity from moving within the economy much more than it does by government confiscation of that money and the inherent inefficiencies with the government.


If the government confiscates a dollar and then gives it to a welfare mother it is going to move around a LOT more than if it sits on a big pile of money in Bill Gates office. Even if Bill invests it in something it's still only moving back and forth among the upper class people isn't it?

The problem is that money _naturally_ flows upwards. It never goes down except when it will cause even more to flow up.

Also, all of the folks talking about the American dream are right. Now you can't aim for one of the top franchises when you are starting out. Different franchises have different starting requirements. I believe that things like Subway and some of the lesser known franchises are the cheapest ones. Let's say you can't afford the 50 or 70 grand to do one yourself. Have you thought about pooling your money with partners? Hell, you look at immigrants and you see that often they will pool their money in order to start a business.


I don't believe Papa Johns is actually one of the top franchises. The main reason I was looking at them specifically is that there is not one in my area and I like their pizza!

As for pooling, well I'd have to have money to pool. Right now I'm at -$45K, so I think that option's out.

Also, you show a definite lack of understanding in how a corporation works in talking about taxes. I have news for you, corporations don't actually pay any taxes. Now before you go wild let me explain. All companies have certain profit margin targets and expectations. If you raise taxes on a company, that is just an expense on their income statement. In order for that company to maintain their profit margin, they simply raise the prices that consumers pay. Therefore, a tax hike on companies is actually a tax on the consumer.


I understand your logic here, but I don't think you are necessarily correct. I think companies have, by and large, already set prices at what they think is the maximum a consumer will pay. In other words they might not risk raising prices any more because fewer people would buy their products if they did.

I can certainly see logic in not taxing corporations, but I definately believe personal fortunes and income should be taxed as well as dividends from shares. I also think that a group controlling 80% of the nations money should pay 80% of the nations taxes... call me crazy, but it seems fair somehow.

Basically, you seem to lack the ability to understand how greed is a primary motivator for all or at least most people. It is the reason we work and can't simply sit on the mud all the time. Stop being a pessimist!


Stop being an optimist! ;)

No, I understand perfectly that greed is the motivator for most things. The problem is that greed is not in and of itself a good thing. Greed can lead to good things, but that happens almost by accident. Greed more often leads to things like the corruption of the Oil-for-Food program that was supposed to help keep Iraqi people alive while still punishing Saddam!


<b>Teflor</b>

Yeah, and Ambar accuses ME of making the same wrong point redundantly? I posted an article showing how little class mobility there is in this country, either deal with that or drop the point. I'm not going to get into another repetative shouting match with you.

<b>Ambar</b>

no, actually YOU just assume I was going to say that .. maybe I was just curious what you do? I remember a while ago you bitching about being underpaid and working second shift ... and it was all the government's fault


Yeah, you might think that's what I was saying if you didn't read my posts entirely. I stated several times specifically that I don't blame the government for what job I have, but that I do blame the government for not doing enough (or anything) to improve the jobs situation in this country.

I have no doubt your offline persona is different than your online one, typically this is the case .. people are generally NICE in person and general buttheads online


What, like butting into conversations they weren't involved in to bitch at the participants? You don't say!

I'm actually not that nice in person, I'm normally shy and reserved and kind of a sarcastic ass once you get to know me. I'm actually pretty much the same in the mud. Here too, but I'm more outspoken and less shy.

Noone is saying you shouldn't be allowed to argue ... a healthy argument is good once in a while .. what I am essentially saying is .. that you argue and argue and argue the same WRONG point without saying anything different ..


Odd... Corth and I just came to a small consensus. So I suppose he's wrong too?

Oh, and I only argue the same point repetatively when someone like Teflor is incapable of moving onto the next thought.

I mean seriously, are you reading this thread... we started at "poor people are not inferior" and are now at "why is profit a good thing!"

If you were correct we'd still be at poor people are not inferior wouldn't we?

you assume its everyone else that is dense and not you


Not everyone, just you and Teflor.

At least everyone else seems capable of reason.
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Postby Corth » Thu Dec 30, 2004 5:52 pm

the problem with your theory, Sarvis, is that Nike would never have even come into existence unless it was able to sell its sneakers for more money than it cost them to produce and market. Nobody would have invested in the company without the expectation of having their investment grow, factories would not have been built, and mass producing sneakers is simply something that cannot be done in one's garage. The fact of the matter is that Nike has no reason to do any favors for the 'poor'. Its not their role in the world. If they are really selling sneakers at such a huge margin, it stands to reason that over time they would go out of business because some other company would sell cheaper and take their market share away.

Corth
Having said all that, the situation has been handled, so this thread is pretty much at an end. -Kossuth



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Postby rylan » Thu Dec 30, 2004 6:05 pm

I used to work with a guy who loved debating/arguing anything. He would come up to you and make a statement, and even if you agreed with him the guy would argue for his point.
I think if Sarvis and this guy met it would create a black hole. :P
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Postby Sarvis » Thu Dec 30, 2004 6:07 pm

Corth wrote:the problem with your theory, Sarvis, is that Nike would never have even come into existence unless it was able to sell its sneakers for more money than it cost them to produce and market. Nobody would have invested in the company without the expectation of having their investment grow, factories would not have been built, and mass producing sneakers is simply something that cannot be done in one's garage.


Ok, startup fees. I guess I wasn't thinking about those, however shares are like a permanent loan. I mean, if you take out a normal loan to get business startup fees you then use profit to pay it off and eventually it goes away. Shares, on the other hand, are like a loan you _permanently_ have to pay. It's like permanent debt!

So I guess what I'm saying is why didn't they just find something more like a "loan" in the first place to build those factories, or even now why not just "de-corporate" so as not to need to pay dividends any more?


The fact of the matter is that Nike has no reason to do any favors for the 'poor'. Its not their role in the world.


Arguably it is the duty of every man to do favors for the poor. Especially when your survival depends on them! (As consumers.)


If they are really selling sneakers at such a huge margin, it stands to reason that over time they would go out of business because some other company would sell cheaper and take their market share away.

Corth


Being glib again eh? ;)

There _are_ companies which sell sneakers cheaper than Nike. You can even find companies which make shoes of at least the same quality for cheaper.

So by your logic Nike should no longer exist, which only goes to show that there is a flaw in your logic. Well, it's a flaw in the human mindset really. You just forgot to account for it... heh.

This goes back to quality not having any real relevance to success. Nike could make fairly substandard shoes, but at this point their name is "cool" so teenagers and trend setters/followers feel like they have to wear Nikes to improve their own self-worth.

In other words it goes back to what Vigis was saying about promoting yourself. Bah.
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Postby Sarvis » Thu Dec 30, 2004 6:09 pm

rylan wrote:I used to work with a guy who loved debating/arguing anything. He would come up to you and make a statement, and even if you agreed with him the guy would argue for his point.
I think if Sarvis and this guy met it would create a black hole. :P


Somehow I doubt you get a post count twice as high as mine by backing down from arguments. ;)

And contrary to "popular belief" (by which I mean Ambar's) I don't argue everything. Just things I'm interested in.
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Postby Corth » Thu Dec 30, 2004 7:57 pm

Sarvis,

I give the american consumer more credit than that. People look to get good value for their hard earned dollar. To an extent, value can be created through brand marketing and image... but a company selling a substandard product over the long term, at higher than justifiable prices, will not be profitable for very long.

Corth
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Postby Xisiqomelir » Thu Dec 30, 2004 8:26 pm

Corth wrote:To an extent, value can be created through brand marketing and image... but a company selling a substandard product over the long term, at higher than justifiable prices, will not be profitable for very long.


Sadly not true
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Postby Imis9 » Fri Dec 31, 2004 2:49 am

Jeez, Sarvis, this is like beating up an invalid. Shares or stock of a company are not a loan, they represent ownership. Every owner participates in the profits of that entity. In addition, you act as if it is someones responsiblity to give you money. Feh to that.

The way any investment works fundamentally is this.

Expected rate of return = a risk free rate + a risk premium

Why would anyone ever lend you money if you are going to offer a rate of return below the risk free rate? A loan/bond has less risk because it is senior in the financial hierarchy of that company or entity. Conversely, ownership shares are riskier as they are last in line to get paid in event of a bankruptcy. Therefore, you will always require a higher risk premium for a riskier asset. Rates of return represent competition for those funds by the entity that are willing to pay them.

In addition, your assumption that money only flows upward is just plain ignorant. Remember, the velocity of money is the important thing in the system. Let's take someone working and let's follow a dollar through the system for the case of a government handout to a welfare mother and the wage earner spending their cash.

Wage earner takes her husband out to dinner and a dollar goes to the waiter.
The waiter uses that dollar they earned and buys video card.
The clerk uses that dollar to buy clothes at a department store.
The store person uses the dollar at Burger King.
The person at Burger King uses that dollar to spend on school books.
The person at the book store uses the money to buy MS office.

Government takes the cash and gives it to the welfare mother.

Notice the larger number of steps the earner's dollar takes. In addition, each step that it was used generated sales tax, income tax, social security tax, and other taxes. Money is best that flows through the system because it multiples as it moves creating liquidity.

This is why the assertion that money just flows upwards is pretty damn stupid. I'll grant you that if the welfare mother isn't working that she doesn't fit the model, but she's a parasite on the system anyway.

Papa Johns is a pretty big name, starting out you'd want some franchise like Tojo's or something like that. The fact your net worth is -$45K is either you are in school and investing in your eduction, or if that is credit card debt, then you're just plain stupid. Sadly, it isn't a crime to be stupid.

Let's delve into your thing about personal fortunes. Estate taxes are not a tax on fortunes. Let me explain. Estate taxes are actually a tax on the assets you control directly. As Corth can probably attest to, if you are willing to give up direct control of your money, you can largely avoid or minimize estate taxes. For rich people, only the stupid ones pay alot of taxes.

In regards to the corporate tax thing, you once again don't understand pricing of products. What is important is not their actual price, but their price relative to replacement products. If you raise corporate taxes, that is a uniform raise to all companies. To maintain profit margins, they would all raise their prices. What this causes is inflation because you have a general rise in pricing levels. The only time that their would not be a raise in prices across the board is if some company was trying to increase their market share. This doesn't pertain to this case as we did not increase production levels to create excess supply.

Greed, whether for yourself, a particular group or your society in general, is the desire to have things better. Yes, greed can go too far into the illegal realm, but that is a matter of making a choice between good business practices and bad ones.

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Postby Corth » Fri Dec 31, 2004 3:04 am

Xisiqomelir wrote:
Corth wrote:To an extent, value can be created through brand marketing and image... but a company selling a substandard product over the long term, at higher than justifiable prices, will not be profitable for very long.


Sadly not true


So come up with something better than Windows :)
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 4:27 am

Corth wrote:
Xisiqomelir wrote:
Corth wrote:To an extent, value can be created through brand marketing and image... but a company selling a substandard product over the long term, at higher than justifiable prices, will not be profitable for very long.


Sadly not true


So come up with something better than Windows :)


They <b>HAVE</b>.

Linux, BeOS, Lindows. Probably others that no one ever hears of.

What about browsers? IE sucks hardcore, but it's still what everyone uses despite the existence of other _free_ browsers. I use the free version of Opera almost exclusively.

I also mentioned that there were sneakers cheaper than Nike which were of at least the same quality. I guess you just don't believe me then? I've had a couple good pairs of Adidas and you can go to pay-less to get generic shoes for like 10 bucks. An entire business is built on selling cheap shoes, and Nike still manages to exist.

<b>Xisiqomelir</b>

Thanks for the example, couldn't think of one on my own last night... heh. Can't believe MS didn't come to mind...
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 4:53 am

Imis9 wrote:Jeez, Sarvis, this is like beating up an invalid. Shares or stock of a company are not a loan, they represent ownership. Every owner participates in the profits of that entity. In addition, you act as if it is someones responsiblity to give you money. Feh to that.


It would be if I were a shareholder now wouldn't it?

See what I mean, if I had money to buys shares people would be responsible for giving me money. Since I don't already have money I can't get wealthy because no one will give me any. Kinda funny when you think about it.

The way any investment works fundamentally is this.

Expected rate of return = a risk free rate + a risk premium

Why would anyone ever lend you money if you are going to offer a rate of return below the risk free rate? A loan/bond has less risk because it is senior in the financial hierarchy of that company or entity. Conversely, ownership shares are riskier as they are last in line to get paid in event of a bankruptcy. Therefore, you will always require a higher risk premium for a riskier asset. Rates of return represent competition for those funds by the entity that are willing to pay them.


Yes, I know how investment works. This is why poor people cannot invest, it is too much risk for any investment that is worthwhile.

In addition, your assumption that money only flows upward is just plain ignorant. Remember, the velocity of money is the important thing in the system. Let's take someone working and let's follow a dollar through the system for the case of a government handout to a welfare mother and the wage earner spending their cash.


Umm... in none of your examples did money move downwards. Kinda funny how that's exactly what I was saying!

Wage earner takes her husband out to dinner and a dollar goes to the waiter.
The waiter uses that dollar they earned and buys video card.
The clerk uses that dollar to buy clothes at a department store.
The store person uses the dollar at Burger King.
The person at Burger King uses that dollar to spend on school books.
The person at the book store uses the money to buy MS office.


Ok, it's not perfectly accurate since somehow that dollar never ends up in the hands of the corporations themselves, which it should unless they are all losing money somehow!

Government takes the cash and gives it to the welfare mother.


So you somehow think it goes to a welfare mother and just stops? What is the logic behind that? Why doesn't the welfare mother buy food for her child with it at a grocery store?

Then the dollar goes to a checkout clerk.,
The clerk buys a video card.
The video store clerk uses it to buy clothes at a department store.
The store person uses that dollar at burger king.
The person at Burger King uses that dollar to spend on school books.
The person at the book store uses the money to buy MS office.
Then Bill Gates grabs it and stuffs his mattress with it.

Seriously though, why do you see a difference in those two scenarios? I mean speaking strictly about the movement of money. You could, and likely will, argue that the welfare mother didn't do anything to deserve it... but no one deserves to starve to death.

Notice the larger number of steps the earner's dollar takes.


No.

This is why the assertion that money just flows upwards is pretty damn stupid. I'll grant you that if the welfare mother isn't working that she doesn't fit the model, but she's a parasite on the system anyway.


And how'd she get to be this "parasite" you envision anyway? Could it be that she grew up in a poor area, where her school wasn't getting the funding necessary? Could it be that her job got moved to Taiwan so that shareholders could get higher dividends for no work, and since she's so poorly educated she can't find other work? Could it have all started when her husband died in some war in Iraq?

But no, you're right. People should only count in our society if they can buy shares!

Papa Johns is a pretty big name, starting out you'd want some franchise like Tojo's or something like that. The fact your net worth is -$45K is either you are in school and investing in your eduction, or if that is credit card debt, then you're just plain stupid. Sadly, it isn't a crime to be stupid.


AH, so I'm stupid now? And Ambar accuses me of flaming people.

Let's see... thanks to the economy going south a few years ago my income level when from 30K a year <i>on an internship</i> to 0. I even had savings to keep bills paid for a few months, but that ran out before I could finda new job and since it was an internship I wasn't eligable for unemployment. Yes, I was looking for almost any kind of job including restraunts, stores and such. Jobs are not as easy as you think to come by.

Oh, and the larger portion of that _is_ student loans.

But hey, Corth is at around -100K so I guess he's dumber than me, right?

It's not as if you are expected to have debt to get anywhere in this country. They certainly wouldn't only give a good credit rating to people who consistantly carry debt, and no one would ever check a persons credit rating before giving them a job.

Let's delve into your thing about personal fortunes. Estate taxes are not a tax on fortunes. Let me explain. Estate taxes are actually a tax on the assets you control directly. As Corth can probably attest to, if you are willing to give up direct control of your money, you can largely avoid or minimize estate taxes. For rich people, only the stupid ones pay alot of taxes.


Yeah, funny how conservatives and rich people want to start all these wars but avoid paying the taxes necessary to finance them. I love that!

Though I don't believe I mentioned estate taxes.

In regards to the corporate tax thing, you once again don't understand pricing of products. What is important is not their actual price, but their price relative to replacement products. If you raise corporate taxes, that is a uniform raise to all companies. To maintain profit margins, they would all raise their prices. What this causes is inflation because you have a general rise in pricing levels. The only time that their would not be a raise in prices across the board is if some company was trying to increase their market share. This doesn't pertain to this case as we did not increase production levels to create excess supply.


And companies would <i>never</i> collude with each other to set prices!

Oh, and we're having inflation anyway. Plus I believe I mentioned it made a certain amount of sense to not tax corporations?

Greed, whether for yourself, a particular group or your society in general, is the desire to have things better. Yes, greed can go too far into the illegal realm, but that is a matter of making a choice between good business practices and bad ones.


Greed is not the desire to have things better, it is just the desire to have MORE.

What is the magical emotion which is supposed to make people choose good business practices? They are less profitable after all, so your beloved greed dictates a choice of bad business practices.

If there were actually anything to moderate greed as you suggest we'd be able to find an honest politician!

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Heh... Edison must hate Buddhists...
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Postby teflor the ranger » Fri Dec 31, 2004 5:32 am

Even taking a look at the ten richest people in this country...

(1) Bill Gates

He's worth 90 billion dollars, an entire year's revenue of the American cellular telephone industry.

Born to a middle class family.

(7) Michael Dell

He's worth 16.5 billion dollars, about the number of people McDonald's served up to 1996.

Born to an upper middle class family.

(8, 9, 10) Members of the Walton Family

Worth billions seperatly, many billions together, Sam Walton was born of a middle class family, whos family came nearly penniless to the country.




Furthermore, I'm willing to bet there are others in the top ten who demonstrated the great class mobility in this county, unforutnatly, I do not subscribe to Forbes magazine.

You see, Sarvis, you are making the critical mistake that the Nazis and the Japanese did in world war II. You looked at this country, and did not see very much "mobility" of the great American beauracracy, but you ignored it's capability of mobility.

That's how they got the smackdown handed to them.

Sarvis, a measurement of how many people actually move between classes is a horribly moot point.

Say 50% of the lower class move into the lower middle class (like in Nazi Germany). But what if you were denied that mobility because you were Jewish?

Anyway, the point is that the capacity for mobility is a much more important measurement than the actual movement. Since most people could hardly be bothered to change their situation anyway.
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 6:01 am

teflor the ranger wrote: Since most people could hardly be bothered to change their situation anyway.


First of all, everyone you named came from middle class... middle class has a pretty big range to it. There's nothing stating they weren't very nearly upper class, for instance. I'm pretty sure Bill Gates went to a fairly expensive college... I'm thinking MIT but not sure. I don't know anything about the others though.

I tend to disagree with your assessment that the number of people changing classes is immaterial. If only one person in an entire theoretical country moves up from the poorest class to being the entire rich class himself that does not mean that the society has high class mobility. It does not mean that people, in general, can improve their lives. It means that an exceptional lucky or gifted few can get ahead while everyone else stagnates.

And let's look at Bill Gates. His entire company was based off producing an operating system for IBM. He intially turned IBM down as well, but they couldn't find anyone else so they begged him to do it again. After that his fortune was mostly made, until around the pentium/windows era, because of the popularity of IBM's machines rather than the popularity of his software. In short, IBM made Bill Gates... Bill Gates did not do it himself.

I also strongly disagree with you that people choose to stay in the same class, because I don't think people who can barely get by are choosing to be dirt poor.

And Vigis didn't believe me that people thought like that...

You might as well say all those people killed by the tsunami chose not to move to a safer country.
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Postby teflor the ranger » Fri Dec 31, 2004 6:42 am

Sarvis wrote:First of all, everyone you named came from middle class... middle class has a pretty big range to it.


Repeating myself,

(8, 9, 10) Members of the Walton Family

Worth billions seperatly, many billions together, Sam Walton was born of a middle class family, whos family came nearly penniless to the country.
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 6:47 am

teflor the ranger wrote:
Sarvis wrote:First of all, everyone you named came from middle class... middle class has a pretty big range to it.


Repeating myself,

(8, 9, 10) Members of the Walton Family

Worth billions seperatly, many billions together, Sam Walton was born of a middle class family, whos family came nearly penniless to the country.


Yes, and?

God you're relentless when you think you have a point. Look, ok SOME people can get lucky and hit it big. Hell, I could win the lottery tomorrow (if I actually bothered to play.) That wouldn't prove people can actually have a good shot at getting ahead by working hard in this country.
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Postby Corth » Fri Dec 31, 2004 9:20 am

Sarvis wrote:See what I mean, if I had money to buys shares people would be responsible for giving me money. Since I don't already have money I can't get wealthy because no one will give me any. Kinda funny when you think about it.


Get a job.. make some money.. buy some stock.. like everyone else...

Your going to have to figure it out on your own one day. Until you at some point make the mental connection that greed is a powerful force for good in this world... that generally speaking, people, and groups of people (corporations), contribute to society by producing valuable goods and services only when they can profit as a result, you will continue to feel as if your hopes and aspirations are being denied arbitrarily.

Corth
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 9:42 am

Corth wrote:
Sarvis wrote:See what I mean, if I had money to buys shares people would be responsible for giving me money. Since I don't already have money I can't get wealthy because no one will give me any. Kinda funny when you think about it.


Get a job.. make some money.. buy some stock.. like everyone else...


There's a long distance between most jobs available now and the kinds of jobs you need to afford playing the stock market.

Your going to have to figure it out yourself one day. Until you at some point make the mental connection that greed is a powerful force for good in this world... that people, and groups of people (corporations), produce valuable goods and services only when they can profit as a result, you will continue to feel as if your hopes and aspirations are being denied arbitrarily.

Corth


Right. Powerful force for good. The Enron affair was a good thing, I'll have to remember that.

And certainly not a single <a href="http://www.RedCross.org ">organization</a> or <a href="http://www.buchkritik.at/themen/linux/torvalds.jpg">person</a> in the world has ever produced <a href="http://nwvault.ign.com/Files/modules/modulesTop2.shtml">products</a> or <a href="http://www.torilmud.org">services</a> for any reason other than greed.


I guess Shevy, Shar and the others are all just running this game for us out of greed then?
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Postby Corth » Fri Dec 31, 2004 10:07 am

Very typical. nitpick the point to death.

1. Greed is a force of good that can be taken too far. That is why we have laws to temper it. Officers of Enron who allowed their greed to override their respect for the law are being prosecuted. Hey.. love can get out of hand too sometimes! Its the human condition.

2. I said, "GENERALLY SPEAKING", people only produce valuable goods and services in exchange for profit.

Having said all that, and after pulling a Crumar and posting that I will no longer post, I will now reiterate myself...

get a job.. make some money.. buy some stock.. like everyone else...

Corth
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Postby teflor the ranger » Fri Dec 31, 2004 10:12 am

Sarvis wrote:God you're relentless when you think you have a point. Look, ok SOME people can get lucky and hit it big. Hell, I could win the lottery tomorrow (if I actually bothered to play.) That wouldn't prove people can actually have a good shot at getting ahead by working hard in this country.


Sarvis, if you knew anything about anything, you would at least read the Walton's story.
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 10:29 am

Corth wrote:Very typical. nitpick the point to death.

1. Greed is a force of good that can be taken too far. That is why we have laws to temper it. Officers of Enron who allowed their greed to override their respect for the law are being prosecuted. Hey.. love can get out of hand too sometimes! Its the human condition.

2. I said, "GENERALLY SPEAKING", people only produce valuable goods and services in exchange for profit.

Having said all that, and after pulling a Crumar and posting that I will no longer post, I will now reiterate myself...


Not nitpicking, just pointing out that there are actually quite a lot of services and organizations that people provide for reasons other than greed.

In other words, your claim that there would be no innovatation without profit motive is wrong. In fact, with web browsers the primary innovation these days comes from people who are not trying to profit from the software while the people who are trying to profit from it have become stagnant!


get a job.. make some money.. buy some stock.. like everyone else...

Corth


If you think everyone owns stock you must know a very select crowd. Most of the people I know can't afford to.

<b>Teflor</b>

Meh... too lazy right now. Got games to play, summarize if it's that important to ye.

Still, the story of one family does not mean that anyone who wants to can just do what they did. Sure, you show that it's _possible_ to move classes, but it almost always is. Even in strict feudal societies you could probably move up in class if you saved the King's life or something. I guess maybe not in India, so if you're trying to say we have better class mobility than India... you win.
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Postby teflor the ranger » Fri Dec 31, 2004 10:51 am

The only good examples in life are comparisons. Justice isn't something you put a dollar bill into a machine and hit A8.

In life, the best we can ask for is to have a fighting chance.

It doesn't mean we don't have to fight for things.

Seperation of classes exists as a natural phenomenon.

It's already staggeringly amazing that in this country we can chose to go from one to the other.

This shortsighted study you gave as an example doesn't say anything that was not already known. What it does do, in fact, is ignore all that has been done to make it an observation, rather than a fact of life.
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 11:06 am

teflor the ranger wrote:The only good examples in life are comparisons. Justice isn't something you put a dollar bill into a machine and hit A8.

In life, the best we can ask for is to have a fighting chance.


I dunno, seems like we could ask to have an equal chance to improve our status based on our abilities and effort rather than letting our society stagnate in a situation where your status at birth does the most to determine how far you can go.

It doesn't mean we don't have to fight for things.

Seperation of classes exists as a natural phenomenon.


Wow, way to take us all the way back to the beginning.

You might remember that the article said we could minimize that disparity though right? I mean hell, isn't society itself based on fighting natural phenomena? Like building fires to fight off the natural phenomenon of freezing to death?

Too many conservatives about when fire was invented and we'd all still be in the stone age!

It's already staggeringly amazing that in this country we can chose to go from one to the other.


No, you can't. I chose to go from poor to middle class by educating myself so I couldg et a middle class job. Still poor, with no real signs of changing.

Meanwhile Jarod the subway guy just wanted to lose some weight and got rich.

This shortsighted study you gave as an example doesn't say anything that was not already known. What it does do, in fact, is ignore all that has been done to make it an observation, rather than a fact of life.


Right, sure... it's not a fact of life. It's certainly not as if our own economic system was observed and worked with that formula. It's also certainly not like there's a wealth gap in this country.
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Postby teflor the ranger » Fri Dec 31, 2004 11:24 am

Sarvis wrote:I dunno, seems like we could ask to have an equal chance to improve our status based on our abilities and effort rather than letting our society stagnate in a situation where your status at birth does the most to determine how far you can go.


You mean like Corth's grandfather, Bill Gates, Michael Dell, the Rockafellers, the once penniless Waltons, and myself? All born much worse off than we are?

Sarvis wrote:Too many conservatives about when fire was invented and we'd all still be in the stone age!


Woah, completely unsubstantiated like most of your arguements. Conservaties are also the ones who build and use our miltiary technology.

Sarvis wrote:No, you can't. I chose to go from poor to middle class by educating myself so I couldg et a middle class job. Still poor, with no real signs of changing.


Stop spending. Really if you'd like, I can help you manage your finances.

Sarvis wrote:Meanwhile Jarod the subway guy just wanted to lose some weight and got rich.


More evidence of class mobility.

Sarvis wrote:Right, sure... it's not a fact of life. It's certainly not as if our own economic system was observed and worked with that formula. It's also certainly not like there's a wealth gap in this country.


Like I said, you see the gaps but not the bridges.
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Postby Ensis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 11:26 am

Sarvis..you are a goddamn idiot.

I didn't see anyone else popping in to say so :)

Also: before you start using words like "facts", you may want to look up the definition of the word. While you're at it, look up the uses of your/you're, their/they're/there, to/too, and whatever other minor grammar issues im missing because it's 3am and I'm just now looking at this stupid link (thanks Snurgt!).

Furthermore, stop talking about selling your time in order to pay for your education and get it done, from the looks of it you could use all that you can get.

Driving thru--

E
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 11:38 am

Ensis wrote:Sarvis..you are a goddamn idiot.

I didn't see anyone else popping in to say so :)


You haven't been reading the thread then. Interesting that you can claim how much of an idiot I am without actually reading the thread.

Also: before you start using words like "facts", you may want to look up the definition of the word. While you're at it, look up the uses of your/you're, their/they're/there, to/too, and whatever other minor grammar issues im missing because it's 3am and I'm just now looking at this stupid link (thanks Snurgt!).


Umm... yeah. Way to add something of value to the discussion! Did Ambar or Teflor put you up to this? You must realize I'm posting late at night as well, so things like your/you're tend to be typos more than anything else. Just like im/I'm for you. Yeah, the old net adage: If you're going to pick on someone's grammar, make sure your own is perfect.

Furthermore, stop talking about selling your time in order to pay for your education and get it done, from the looks of it you could use all that you can get.

Driving thru--

E


My education is done, which is another thing which would be clear if you had actually read this thread.
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Postby teflor the ranger » Fri Dec 31, 2004 11:42 am

No such thing as an education being done, Sarvis.

Unless of course, you have an urge to remain in your financial state.
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 11:53 am

teflor the ranger wrote:You mean like Corth's grandfather, Bill Gates, Michael Dell, the Rockafellers, the once penniless Waltons, and myself? All born much worse off than we are?


I'll grant that Corth's grandfather achieved what he did on his own merit. I already explained to you how Bill Gates did not, and that I don't know about the Waltons or Dell.

As for you? Good for you, though you must not be putting too much effort into it if you have all this free time to MUD and post unsubstantiated rants on the bbs!

Woah, completely unsubstantiated like most of your arguements.


Wow, this is a good one coming from the one person who has never substantiated a single claim he's made on this forum.

Oh, and by the way that was a musing, not something I was presenting as fact. Actually, you can't substantiate arguments either. You can only substantiate the facts you use to support your argument, which I <b>do</b> whenever I can find a link.

That said, the statement was a half joke. Remember that the whole _point_ of conservatism is to keep things as they are. So if there had been conservatives around, they probably would have argued against fire since it would represent a change in the status quo. <i>That's what they do.</i>

I wouldn't be surprised if the first conservative was the first guy to sit too close to a fire and burn himself, then spend all eternity arguing about how evil fire was with grunts not unlike your own.


Conservaties are also the ones who build and use our miltiary technology.


Talk about unsubstantiated. What, three's _only_ conservatives in the army? There no worker on a factory floor somewhere putting together a machine gun who isn't a conservative?

Stop spending. Really if you'd like, I can help you manage your finances.


*yawn* Wow, as if we haven't already been through this a couple times. I know, I know... I'm in debt so I MUST be a spendthrift idiot. So is Corth, and moreso! So apparently conservatives can be spendthrift idiots too!

More evidence of class mobility.


But not based on effort or merit, just on luck. Like I said, anyone can save a King's life and move up in the world. That doesn't prove that everyone who works hard can improve their lot in life. Working hard certainly hasn't done shit for me.

(This is where you repeat every other economic conservative/libertarian and tell me I also have to work smart!)

Like I said, you see the gaps but not the bridges.


Meanwhile you just come up with meaningless catch phrases and spew them out like a sick lutefisk.
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 11:54 am

teflor the ranger wrote:No such thing as an education being done, Sarvis.

Unless of course, you have an urge to remain in your financial state.


I have an urge to not worsen my financial state by spending more on education, how's that for controlling my spending?

By the way, I meant my <i>formal</i> education was done.
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 12:01 pm

<b>Corth,Teflor and maybe Imis9</b>

You know what's an interesting difference in our perspectives? Corth started his own business succesfully, Teflor has somehow improved his standing in society and I'm pretty sure Imis9 mentioned something along those same lines.

I, on the other hand, after trying to get a degree in a popular field and move myself up from poor to middle class, not even an insanely high goal, found myself exactly back where I started. Only in debt.

In other words, you three succeeded so now I think you believe _everyone_ can succeed just by working at it. I failed so I know that isn't true.

I mean, do NONE of you know anyone who tried to start a business and it failed? Or who made what they thought was a good investment that went south?

You always make it sound so easy, like if I just spend a couple years working a few extra hours a week or something everything in my life will magically get better just because I spent effort on it.

I think you guys are exceptions rather than the rule.
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Postby teflor the ranger » Fri Dec 31, 2004 12:46 pm

three words:

try, try again.

the problem you have is that you think that you are the rule
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Postby Ambar » Fri Dec 31, 2004 12:49 pm

Sarvis wrote:God you're relentless when you think you have a point. Look, ok SOME people can get lucky and hit it big. Hell, I could win the lottery tomorrow (if I actually bothered to play.) That wouldn't prove people can actually have a good shot at getting ahead by working hard in this country.


does anyone else find this as hysterically funny as i do?

Sarvis you can invest a SMALL amount and make LOTS of money .. in a SAFE manner over time

ever heard of mutual funds?

i started investing 50$ a paycheck ($100 a month) and my fund is at 150k after 2 years ... (tho after one year i did start fully funding it)

can you at least find a topic you know something about to argue? (perchance data entry at fed-ex on the second shift)

you are arguing money and it's earning potential with lawyers and financial experts .. rofl

... priceless ...

i assume you have some college education because of your negative *equity* .. what is your degree in and why arent you working in your field .. or is the government to blame for that too?
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 1:17 pm

teflor the ranger wrote:three words:

try, try again.


And now we reach one of the points this article made:

Trying has left me so deep in debt I am struggling _just_ to pay that off. I do not have the resources to try again.

Whereas you have someone like Bush who can fail several times and yet STILL be wealthy!

the problem you have is that you think that you are the rule


The statistics agree with me. This study agrees with me. The other article I gave you a link to agrees with me.

This chart shows how the top 20% of households are gaining more money at the expense of lower income households:

Image

And THAT's during the middle of the .com boom!

It's called substantiating your claims, something you accused me of not doing remember?

You've shown 3 people and a family who made it. That's what they call outliers in statistics.
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Postby teflor the ranger » Fri Dec 31, 2004 1:30 pm

And why do you think that they call statistics lies?

That chart is a production of fact, but the way you use it is narrowminded and shortsighted.

It does not prove or disprove the capacity or capability for change.

Furthermore, it does not suprise me that in the land of obesity, welfare, and the Rascal scooter, that many people aren't doing much for themselves.

Show it to Bill Gates or David Sarnoff (Don't know who he is? Google.)

Another funny thing about the lottery, mathematically, even if only one person ever bought a lottery ticket, the lotteries would gain money. It's called "odds".

Furthermore, since when was 1987 the middle of the dot com boom?
Last edited by teflor the ranger on Fri Dec 31, 2004 1:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 1:31 pm

Ambar wrote:does anyone else find this as hysterically funny as i do?


Probably not, since I'm sure you are the only one with superior enough knowledge to find this amusing.

Sarvis you can invest a SMALL amount and make LOTS of money .. in a SAFE manner over time

ever heard of mutual funds?


Heard of, yes. Know anything about what they are, not really.


i started investing 50$ a paycheck ($100 a month) and my fund is at 150k after 2 years ... (tho after one year i did start fully funding it)


Believe it or not $100 a month is stretching it if I wanna get my credit cards paid off in time to start on my student loans.

What is the fully funded version of the amount?

can you at least find a topic you know something about to argue? (perchance data entry at fed-ex on the second shift)


I do know something about this topic. Maybe not a lot, but still something. More than you know about being polite at least.

you are arguing money and it's earning potential with lawyers and financial experts .. rofl


Yes, people who know every dirty secret of our system and people who have lots of money. Imagine that! I can't believe how they could possibly be making more money than a coputer programmer!


... priceless ...

i assume you have some college education because of your negative *equity* .. what is your degree in and why arent you working in your field .. or is the government to blame for that too?


This only goes to show how little you actually read my posts, since this comes up so often and I have answered it several times over a couple different threads.

However:

Computer Science. And I'm not working in my field because the .com crash flooded the market with experienced programmers at the same time they started having jobs shipped over to India with our glorious leader's support.

Like I said, I don't blame the government for my not having a job. But Bush has certainly made it harder for people like me to get jobs by supporting offshoring.

I imagine my perception of my opportunity might be a little different if I were making the $40K that I believe is the average current starting salary, and a LOT different if I were making the $60K I thought I'd be getting when I first got my credit cards.
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 1:39 pm

teflor the ranger wrote:And why do you think that they call statistics lies?


Usually because they don't like what they see...

That chart is a production of fact, but the way you use it is narrowminded and shortsighted.


Ah... so then the families who now have to work three jobs to keep their children fed and a roof over their house DON'T have less earning and spending power than families who only maintained one job did in the 70s?

It does not prove or disprove the capacity or capability for change.


That chart does not, true. The other things I posted do show a tendency towards a lack of capacity for change though.

Furthermore, it does not suprise me that in the land of obesity, welfare, and the Rascal scooter, that many people aren't doing much for themselves.


Right right, I keep forgetting how inferior someone is just because they are poor!

It's _certainly_ not like people are on welfare because corporations don't want to pay them to work, or keep their wages too low for them to support a family! Corporations would definately not do something like that out of greed either, because greed is a Good Thing(tm).


Show it to Bill Gates or David Sarnoff (Don't know who he is? Google.)


Why? Their the ones who HAVE that extra money. Not to mention, again, that Bill didn't get that under his own power or ability.

Another funny thing about the lottery, mathematically, even if only one person ever bought a lottery ticket, the lotteries would gain money. It's called "odds".


Another funny thing about success, it has odds too.
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Postby teflor the ranger » Fri Dec 31, 2004 1:47 pm

You realize that your entire reply did nothing to refute that it is indeed possible for people in America to change classes?

I'd also like to point out that inevitably, superior people do indeed have what it takes to acquire wealth, which is not only exactly what you've been saying, it's also exactly what you are ignoring.

Furthermore, it does not show a lack of capacity, merely a lack of change.
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Dec 31, 2004 1:52 pm

teflor the ranger wrote:You realize that your entire reply did nothing to refute that it is indeed possible for people in America to change classes?

I'd also like to point out that inevitably, superior people do indeed have what it takes to acquire wealth, which is not only exactly what you've been saying, it's also exactly what you are ignoring.


Again you misunderstand me. I never said it wasn't possible, just that it was _difficult_, and increasingly difficult the lower the class you are in.



<b>Ambar</b>

Mutual Funds eh? So I do a search on them to find out more and these are the headlines I get from the first site I click:

SEC probes J.P. Morgan: WSJ
Fund pessimism grows
H&R fined for fund trading
Broken nest egg

From: http://money.cnn.com/funds/

You know, just saying that a person without much money and who has a family to support might look at that and then start looking elsewhere...
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Postby Ambar » Fri Dec 31, 2004 1:54 pm

[quote="Sarvis"]What is the fully funded version of the amount?
[quote]

Roth IRA's are fully funded at $250/month or 3k/year .. no idea if this is going to change or not

noone is telling you not to pay your bills, what i AM telling you is that there are ways .. cut out a soda per day or so .. say $1/day

and it is a START .. you are doing SOMETHING rather than nothing, know what I mean?

and PLEASE , dont make the mistake most of the guys who work for me do .. DO NOT refinance a home and include your bills in the loan amount

*shudder*

and im not the financial advisor, im just some squid who does financial counselling for my sailors as a side line

see .. THIS is a conversation, a give and take .. questions, comments, answers .. not jibes, jabs and retorts ...

as another aside .. i dont think you are less smart for having student loan debt, i just think you got unlucky in your choice of major .. when i call you names or flame, whatever .. im merely stating that you have the tools to do better ... and it seems to me .. TO ME .. that you dont try to do better

im giving an example here ... my sister had a lovely career ahead of her in the Navy .. she got outafter 10 years because she didnt want to go on an aircraft carrier ... instead of taking the benefits she was offered (a college education) becuase she had been seriously injured while in the navy ..she chose to work in retail stores ... now she lives in a 900 square foot house that she rents .. and works at Stein Mart

my other sister was devastated when her husband left her .. penniless and alone .. she got a full time job and has been attending college over the past few years at night .. she has built up some serious debt, but she graduated this december from the university of florida and will now be a teacher the next school year

it IS possible if you put the blood sweat and tears into it ... dont let statistics stop you from obtaining your goals

let YOU be the good example too! why not go back to school .. get your loans deferred and take some networking or whatever else classes .. and build yourself up?

dont let anyone stop you ... dont blame anyone but YOU if it doesnt work

i personally think thats where OUR nation fails .. that people wants things to fall in their lap rather than work for what they want .. then when it doesnt they lay the blame on the government, the country, the president ...

again .. this is MY view

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