|
Your continuous donations keep RPGWatch running!
RPGWatch Forums » General Forums » Politics & Religion » The Wall Street Occupation

Default The Wall Street Occupation

October 12th, 2011, 16:31
Originally Posted by dteowner View Post
How about a word from our sponsors?
Interestingly enough I saw a blog post about those guys today. The key point (IMO):

You'd think that someone who "never had the option of parental health insurance to age 26" would see why such a policy makes sense, or that a person who used welfare and food stamps after suffering an injury and losing her job might understand better than anyone else the value of a social safety net. But, nope! Basic ideas (some might even call them "human rights"!) like "paid time off" and "health insurance" and "a living wage" are apparently the demands of an unreasonably entitled parasitic class.
The big question to me is: what happens to those two persons you posted (I'm not counting the dog) if they catch some disease? Will they be able to keep their living standard, or will they have to drop it significantly to survive?

(Remember that video I posted not long ago about the coming collapse of the middle class? What's killing them is their lack of marigins. One backlash and their lives collapses.)

Originally Posted by blatantninja View Post
Brain structure and computation of information don't equate to personality necessarily. There are massive amounts of different between diesel and gasoline engines, or standard and rotary engines, yet they serve they produce functionally the same result..
Yet you argue that these differences show that men and women truly are different?

Übereil

For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong.

H. L. Mencken

The Chaos Cascade
Ubereil is offline

Ubereil

Ubereil's Avatar
Keeper of the Watch

#101

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Sweden
Posts: 1,263

Default 

October 12th, 2011, 16:38
Originally Posted by JemyM View Post
T"Hey, I started my own business" doesn't mean you created something
Actually it does. Before the business did not exist. Now it does. That's pretty much the definition of creation.

Civilization as you know it, probably. That doesn't make it a worthwhile one.
If you want to go back to living in a cave and being a hunter-gatherer, more power to you.

Jemy, all I say is that you are definitely one strange cat.

————————————————-

"Ya'll can go to HELL! I'm-a-goin' to TEXAS!"

- Davy Crockett
blatantninja is offline

blatantninja

blatantninja's Avatar
Resident Redneck Facist

#102

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 4,080

Default 

October 12th, 2011, 16:48
Originally Posted by Ubereil View Post
The big question to me is: what happens to those two persons you posted (I'm not counting the dog) if they catch some disease? Will they be able to keep their living standard, or will they have to drop it significantly to survive?
Well, that's were things like health insurance (and yes you CAN get an individual policy in this country, my 40 yo brother has one and doesn't pay through the nose), savings (to handle loss of income during those times), and even long term disability insurance (very cheap) come into play. The problem is too many people don't plan for them. I do, but I seem to be in the minority.

(Remember that video I posted not long ago about the coming collapse of the middle class? What's killing them is their lack of marigins. One backlash and their lives collapses.)
I'd feel a lot more sympathy if the average middle class person wasn't:

1) Buying the largest house they can get a loan for, instead of buying a smaller one and saving the difference in payment
2) Having 2 or more cars, often on leases of 2-3 years (IE trap you in a car payment for ever) instead of buying a car and driving it until the wheels fall off
3) Having TV's in every room in the house and have to have the latest and greatest
4) Having every member of the family with a cell phone that they upgrade every year or so.

And I could go on. Americans waste a massive amount of money on materialistic things. Thankfully, I was raised by a cheap bastard and especially after suffering a year of unemployment in '01-'02, I've adopted his ways. I know so many middle class people that make less then me, yet spend significantly more than me. If they get fired/laid off, they are screwed as soon as the unemployment benefits run out (and often before since those benefits don't replace all lost income).

If I lost my job, even without unemployment benefits, we could last at least 6 months and possible as long as a year. (and that's without earning any income from side jobs along the way). Nobody handed this to me. I've been scrimping and saving every way I could since getting re-employed in 2002. It's all about choices and Americans are addicted to immediate gratification.


Yet you argue that these differences show that men and women truly are different?

Übereil
Absolutely. We certainly share many similarities, generally can do the same jobs with the same levels of performance, and I certainly do not believe anyone should be discriminated based on sex (or age, etc.), but that doesn't mean there aren't fundamental differences in us that are biological in nature.

————————————————-

"Ya'll can go to HELL! I'm-a-goin' to TEXAS!"

- Davy Crockett
Last edited by blatantninja; October 12th, 2011 at 18:12.
blatantninja is offline

blatantninja

blatantninja's Avatar
Resident Redneck Facist

#103

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 4,080

Default 

October 12th, 2011, 18:02
Originally Posted by blatantninja View Post
And I could go on. American's waste a massive amount of money on materialistic things. Thankfully, I was raised by a cheap bastard and especially after suffering a year of unemployment in '01-'02, I've adopted his ways. I know so many middle class people that make less then me, yet spend significantly more than me. If they get fired/laid off, they are screwed as soon as the unemployment benefits run out (and often before since those benefits don't replace all lost income).
Well, you are a notable exception rather than a rule bn BUT "American's waste a massive amount of money on materialistic things" was widely encouraged and kept US economy going. Look just what has happened when, for once, people cut down on their spending and started saving?

Very interesting article by Erza Klein: http://www.washingtonpost.com/busine…L_story_1.html
zahratustra is offline

zahratustra

SasqWatch

#104

Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 2,345

Default 

October 12th, 2011, 18:17
Originally Posted by zahratustra View Post
Well, you are a notable exception rather than a rule bn BUT "American's waste a massive amount of money on materialistic things" was widely encouraged and kept US economy going. Look just what has happened when, for once, people cut down on their spending and started saving?

Very interesting article by Erza Klein: http://www.washingtonpost.com/busine…L_story_1.html
I don't disagree (F you Greenspan and Bernake) that we were encouraged to do so, but the economy would have adapted. Long term growth of an economy involves a healthy savings rate and its why I have such disdain for what Greenspan started with interest rates (the notorious Greenspan put).

Ultimately though, its up to the people to make a change and take responsibility for themselves. There is no mechanism that the government has employed that forced people to buy more. The fact that people have willfully disregarded the concept of 'saving for a rainy day' for two decades (some would say three) is disgraceful. Just because you are earning 0.25% interest on your savings account doesn't mean you should spend the money instead!

It's going to be painful to fix our economy, and people are going to have to accept that pain (all people from the top to the bottom). Stimulus isn't always wrong, it can work to get past temporary downturns, but it doesn't fix things when the system's base is consumer spending at it is crumbling because that is not sustainable.

————————————————-

"Ya'll can go to HELL! I'm-a-goin' to TEXAS!"

- Davy Crockett
blatantninja is offline

blatantninja

blatantninja's Avatar
Resident Redneck Facist

#105

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 4,080

Default 

October 12th, 2011, 18:44
You are not being consistent bn. People can be blamed for behaving foolishly only if they would have been warned about consequences of such behavior. In fact, as you have admitted yourself, the opposite has happened. If you can't trust bosses of your very own Federal Reserve who can you trust?

BTW I blame both Republicans and Democrats for this fiasco.
zahratustra is offline

zahratustra

SasqWatch

#106

Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 2,345

Default 

October 12th, 2011, 19:09
Originally Posted by zahratustra View Post
You are not being consistent bn. People can be blamed for behaving foolishly only if they would have been warned about consequences of such behavior. In fact, as you have admitted yourself, the opposite has happened. If you can't trust bosses of your very own Federal Reserve who can you trust?
If you think I am not being consistent, then I'm not explaining myself well. People have been warned. They have chosen not to listen to those people doing the warning, be they parents, analysts, or whoever. Just because the government wants us to spend all our money doesn't absolve us of the risks we take in doing so.

People should trust themselves, and they should educate themselves. Again, it goes back to personal responsibility. The bosses of the Fed, and the idiots that have occupied the White House, have talked about the need for consumer spending, but I challenge you to find a single one of them that has ever said people should spend every penny they make. Yes, their fiscal policies have encouraged that, but that doesn't mean you have to play ball.

Just because you could get a $400k loan for a house with income of $35k, should you do it? Of course not.

If you lose all your money at the casino, is it the casino's fault for advertising what a good time it is? Or your own for not being responsible for your money?

BTW I blame both Republicans and Democrats for this fiasco.
Of that we can agree. They are both useless and corrupt.

————————————————-

"Ya'll can go to HELL! I'm-a-goin' to TEXAS!"

- Davy Crockett
blatantninja is offline

blatantninja

blatantninja's Avatar
Resident Redneck Facist

#107

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 4,080

Default 

October 12th, 2011, 19:35
Originally Posted by zahratustra View Post
Well, you are a notable exception rather than a rule bn BUT "American's waste a massive amount of money on materialistic things" was widely encouraged and kept US economy going.
Remember what George Bush said after 9/11. Something along the lines of "go out and buys stuff".

An economy driven by debt and speculation was sure to eventually fail. It was only a matter of time. Of course it hurts the middle and lower class a LOT harder than the rich that benefited the most from the speculation…

Funny how people can't remember the history of the the 20's that led to the Great Depression. And repeat the same mistakes. Greed conquers all.
Thrasher is offline

Thrasher

Thrasher's Avatar
Wheeee!
RPGWatch Donor

#108

Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Studio City, CA
Posts: 9,985

Default 

October 12th, 2011, 19:37
Originally Posted by zahratustra View Post
Very interesting article by Erza Klein: http://www.washingtonpost.com/busine…L_story_1.html
Finally finished reading this article. It is a good one and hits on a lot of important points, though it doesn't really delve into the depths of what put us where we are. One thing though that is completely incorrect is this quote near the end:

Rogoff scoffs at this. “Creating inflation is not rocket science,” he wrote. “All central banks need to do is to keep printing money to buy up government debt.”
I am absolutely shocked that someone of his caliber would make such an incredibly misleading statement.

Creating inflation is actually very difficult in advanced economies. The main reason is that inflation is created far more by velocity of money and credit extension than it is by printing presses.

To give you an example of why this is a problem, the total amount of US physical currency (printed and coinage) is about $1.6T. The total number of dollars in the system is about $9T. This is the result of fractional banking. IE, you deposit $100 in a bank, they loan out $90 to someone else who spends it, that $90 is deposited and another $81 is loaned out, etc.

One of the big problems of the last three years is that banks have not been lending (for a variety of reasons), so that velocity is decreasing, it takes longer for the derivative of a $100 currency deposit be fully fractionalized in the system. Additionally, more of the deposit is not being loaned out, so the net dollars created is smaller too.

Prior to 2008, the total number of dollars in the system was around $11T (Some estimates go up to $20T but that involves a lot of 'cash equivalents' of questionable nature). So we've actually seen a deflation of the money supply of around $2T, though consumer prices, in most cases, have either stagnated or even gone up (I could write a ten page post on how that works!). This is hugely damaging for an economy.

So why not just inflate out of it like Mr. Rogoff suggests? Well, the easiest way to inflate is via the extension of credit. But that hasn't worked. We haven't even be able to keep the level of available credit stable. They could lower the reserve requirements of banks, but even if that spurred lending (which it won't), it makes the system even more fragile.

So if we can't just grow dollars via credit, why not print more?

The simple reason is we can't. To give you an idea of what it would take, there are two currency printing facilities in the US. The current top denomination of bills is $100. If those two facilities did nothing but print $100 bills 24/7 for the next year, they'd produce about $1.4T in new dollars. That's it. That doesn't even cover the dollars lost in the credit contraction much less create actual inflation.

Now, they could do this for several years and yes eventually it would cause inflation, but it would likely take several years before it even covered the yearly decrease in credit (assuming the recession continues).

And there is another problem, there is only one company that produces the paper for US currency and its not that big. They couldn't produce enough material to create that amount of money for one year, much less several years. Sure, they could expand operations, but again, that takes time and there still is a raw material issue.

The next option is to start printing higher denominations ($500, $1000, maybe even $5000). The good news is that doing so could create inflation very quickly. The bad news is that that kind of telegraphed move would cause the credit markets to collapse, destroying the economy. We'd end up with a shell of an economy and run away inflation (this is essentially what happens in a lot of 3rd world countries).

————————————————-

"Ya'll can go to HELL! I'm-a-goin' to TEXAS!"

- Davy Crockett
blatantninja is offline

blatantninja

blatantninja's Avatar
Resident Redneck Facist

#109

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 4,080

Default 

October 12th, 2011, 19:38
Originally Posted by Thrasher View Post
Remember what George Bush said after 9/11. Something along the lines of "go out and buys stuff".

An economy driven by debt and speculation was sure to eventually fail. It was only a matter of time. Of course it hurts the middle and lower class a LOT harder than the rich that benefited the most from the speculation…

Funny how people can't remember the history of the the 20's that led to the Great Depression. And repeat the same mistakes. Greed conquers all.
The only thing I would add to that is that Clinton and the Republican Congress did a lot of the same thing prior to Bush. The good news with them was that they had govt spending and revenues under control, but the bad news was that they fostered the same consumer spending driven economy approach.

————————————————-

"Ya'll can go to HELL! I'm-a-goin' to TEXAS!"

- Davy Crockett
blatantninja is offline

blatantninja

blatantninja's Avatar
Resident Redneck Facist

#110

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 4,080

Default 

October 12th, 2011, 21:20
Originally Posted by blatantninja View Post
People have been warned. They have chosen not to listen to those people doing the warning, be they parents, analysts, or whoever. Just because the government wants us to spend all our money doesn't absolve us of the risks we take in doing so.
Of course it doesn't absolve them but how many people did the actual warnings? Analysts? You can probably count them on just one hand and they were quite an obscure ones. And even they were treated as Cassandras before the crash.
Parents? How many kids want to listen to their parents once they strike out on their own?

You leave out human nature completely bn I am afraid. Sure people should know that, if something sounds too good to be true, it most likely is. But, if it was a popular opinion, being a conman wouldn't be such a popular profession. And wasn't rampant consumption often equated with "American Way"?

Originally Posted by blatantninja View Post
Just because you could get a $400k loan for a house with income of $35k, should you do it? Of course not.
Of course they shouldn't but, when mortgage broker tells you that ever rising prices of properties (they didn't use word like "bubble" did they?) will allow you to cope with the loan, that was good enough for too many of them.

Now, it would have been great if your average Joe or Jane would educate him/herself in financial, political and mortgage analysis. But, when even analysts disagree with each other, just how realistic is that?
zahratustra is offline

zahratustra

SasqWatch

#111

Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 2,345

Default 

October 13th, 2011, 00:35
BN, while I basically agree with everything you are saying, one statement worries me.
" Just because you are earning 0.25% interest on your savings account doesn't mean you should spend the money instead!"

While I'm no expert, it seems to me that if inflation is greater than .25% then when you put money into a bank, you are actually losing value by saving rather than spending. Mind you, I think having bank shares is better than having a bank account!!

If God said it, then that settles it!!

Editor@RPGWatch
Corwin is offline

Corwin

Corwin's Avatar
On The Razorblade of Life
RPGWatch Team

#112

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 10,450
Send a message via Skype™ to Corwin

Default 

October 13th, 2011, 01:11
Yep. But rather than spend it, invest it in bonds or something that at least beats inflation (hopefully)…
Thrasher is offline

Thrasher

Thrasher's Avatar
Wheeee!
RPGWatch Donor

#113

Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Studio City, CA
Posts: 9,985

Default 

October 13th, 2011, 02:18
I kinda want to grab a 18 pack of the cheapest kind of beer, make a sign that says "I survived the 80's", and join up with them. Looks like an awesome party! After the weekend, I'll have to go back to work though.
rossrjensen is offline

rossrjensen

Keeper of the Watch

#114

Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 599

Default 

October 13th, 2011, 11:28
Originally Posted by blatantninja View Post
Actually it does. Before the business did not exist. Now it does. That's pretty much the definition of creation.
A "business" is an abstract construct that doesn't exist outside the mind of it's participants. It also depends on a culture to exist, a culture that recognize the elements necessary for a "business" to exist. It's also a culture in which you can "start a business" as a lasting construct to be compared with "do business" which is simply an act that is done while you do it but cease to exist when you do not.

This is why I say business isn't really a creation in itself but rather a participation in a culture.

Originally Posted by blatantninja View Post
If you want to go back to living in a cave and being a hunter-gatherer, more power to you.
You assume that without your perspective of life, you live in a cave and have to be a hunter-gatherer. Contrary to your perspective there are plenty of cultures around the globe with a very high living standard that is not based on the perspective you have. In Sweden it's illegal to work more than 40 hours for the same employer and we do just fine. We even pay up to 66% tax and still have an average living standard that is above the "53%" that have been shown here. The point is that "tax" and "money" are merely cultural tools. What you should look at is what an individual physically and mentally have to do to fill their needs in the culture they live in. You shouldn't let the cultural symbols themselves confuse you.

Originally Posted by blatantninja View Post
Jemy, all I say is that you are definitely one strange cat.
I haven't been right in the head since anthropology.

Mankind must put an end to war or war will put an end to mankind. - John F Kennedy
An eye for an eye, and soon the whole world is blind. - Mahatma Gandhi
The world is my country. To do good is my religion. My mind is my own church. This simple creed is all we need to enjoy peace on earth. - Thomas Paine
JemyM is offline

JemyM

JemyM's Avatar
Okay, now roll sanity.

#115

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 6,028
Send a message via ICQ to JemyM Send a message via MSN to JemyM

Default 

October 13th, 2011, 11:33
We'll all agree with your last statement!!!!

If God said it, then that settles it!!

Editor@RPGWatch
Corwin is offline

Corwin

Corwin's Avatar
On The Razorblade of Life
RPGWatch Team

#116

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 10,450
Send a message via Skype™ to Corwin

Default 

October 13th, 2011, 11:55
Corporate fat cats do nothing almost all day. The "executives" where I work go home before 2pm and before that they have a 2 hour lunch meeting. Then there is the "strategy" "retreats" and then the generous leave entitlements - 6 weeks+. Then there is the hot blonde 21 year old personal assistant who does 99% of your actual "work". Golden handshakes and insider trading.

Jesus christ, sounds like my dream job. Could probably games all day and nobody would notice…

Favourite RPGs of all time: Wizardry 6, Ultima 7/7.2, Fallout2, Planescape Torment, Baldurs Gate 2+TOB, Jagged Alliance 2, Ravenloft: The stone prophet, Gothic 2, Realms of Arkania:Blade of destiny (not the HD version!!) and Secret of the Silver Blades.
bjon045 is online now

bjon045

bjon045's Avatar
Keeper of the Watch

#117

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Sigil
Posts: 948

Default 

October 13th, 2011, 12:36
Overall there are like 20-30.000 people involved , it wouldn't make it in the news for more than 5' here .
Tragos is offline

Tragos

Tragos's Avatar
Otinanist

#118

Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Athens (the original one)
Posts: 1,439

Default 

October 13th, 2011, 13:24
Originally Posted by Corwin View Post
BN, while I basically agree with everything you are saying, one statement worries me.
" Just because you are earning 0.25% interest on your savings account doesn't mean you should spend the money instead!"

While I'm no expert, it seems to me that if inflation is greater than .25% then when you put money into a bank, you are actually losing value by saving rather than spending. Mind you, I think having bank shares is better than having a bank account!!

Originally Posted by Thrasher View Post
Yep. But rather than spend it, invest it in bonds or something that at least beats inflation (hopefully)…
Well, like thrasher says, you can look at other investments (preferably, imo, hard assets that will keep pace with inflation). But even if you decide to take the safest route, while you may lose money (in fact in my 401k the last 1.5 years being in all money market, I have still managed to lose money due to the fees), but you will still have more cash for an emergency (like loss of job) than if you go out and spend it frivolously.

————————————————-

"Ya'll can go to HELL! I'm-a-goin' to TEXAS!"

- Davy Crockett
blatantninja is offline

blatantninja

blatantninja's Avatar
Resident Redneck Facist

#119

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 4,080

Default 

October 13th, 2011, 13:28
Originally Posted by JemyM View Post
A "business" is an abstract construct that doesn't exist outside the mind of it's participants. It also depends on a culture to exist, a culture that recognize the elements necessary for a "business" to exist. It's also a culture in which you can "start a business" as a lasting construct to be compared with "do business" which is simply an act that is done while you do it but cease to exist when you do not.

This is why I say business isn't really a creation in itself but rather a participation in a culture.
Well, everything is a participation in culture by that definition then.


You assume that without your perspective of life, you live in a cave and have to be a hunter-gatherer. Contrary to your perspective there are plenty of cultures around the globe with a very high living standard that is not based on the perspective you have. In Sweden it's illegal to work more than 40 hours for the same employer and we do just fine.
While you may not work 40 hours (and illegal or not, I know for a fact a lot of people do in our Stockholm office and it is far from the exception), the average person certainly works more than 10-20. In order to sustain society, the production output must be greater than or equal to the production consumption. If people are all working 10 hours a week, that isn't going to happen.

————————————————-

"Ya'll can go to HELL! I'm-a-goin' to TEXAS!"

- Davy Crockett
blatantninja is offline

blatantninja

blatantninja's Avatar
Resident Redneck Facist

#120

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: NYC
Posts: 4,080
RPGWatch Forums » General Forums » Politics & Religion » The Wall Street Occupation
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT +2. The time now is 12:19.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright by RPGWatch