AuthorTopic: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To  (Read 3648 times)

Offline Eddie

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A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« on: November 10, 2015, 08:57:03 AM »
From Tim Knight, who does the Slope of Hope blog. Tim is primarily known as a chartist, and is followed by lots of traders. He is most definitely not a Lefty.

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-11-09/whats-wrong-class-war
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Offline RE

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2015, 09:27:45 AM »
From Tim Knight, who does the Slope of Hope blog. Tim is primarily known as a chartist, and is followed by lots of traders. He is most definitely not a Lefty.

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-11-09/whats-wrong-class-war

Perhaps not generally a lefty, but he sure seems to be in Benrnie Sanders camp, and Bernie is about as left as you get these days in mainstream politics.  lol

Forget the politics though, a hugely skewed wealth distribution just doesn't work for anybody, not even rich dentists.  Their patients don't have enough money to pay for fillings, much less implants! lol.

It's tough to stay a rich dentist when your patients can't buy dental work and Do Goobermint keeps taking more taxes out.

RE
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Offline Eddie

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #2 on: November 10, 2015, 09:46:05 AM »
I'm not a huge fan of Sanders, but what he is (that exactly NO ONE else is)....is a Reformer. I'm not saying that his attempts at reform would fix anything, but nobody else in politics in either party is the least bit oriented toward reforming anything concerning Wall Street and banks.

That's a function of how crooked politics is and how money buys virtually any candidate of any party.
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Offline Ka

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2015, 03:54:02 PM »
I'm not a huge fan of Sanders, but what he is (that exactly NO ONE else is)....is a Reformer. I'm not saying that his attempts at reform would fix anything, but nobody else in politics in either party is the least bit oriented toward reforming anything concerning Wall Street and banks.

That's a function of how crooked politics is and how money buys virtually any candidate of any party.

What's the point of reforming a system that requires growth, when there is no growth? Only a command economy can provide some measure of social justice when the economic pie is shrinking. (Please note: I'm not saying it will provide it, just that it can -- which is why I call for Green Libertarian Socialism.)

Anyway, that's why I pay little attention to Sanders. He wants to protect the middle class, while the only way that a national polity can continue is if the middle class is destroyed.

Offline Surly1

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #4 on: November 10, 2015, 04:02:00 PM »

Anyway, that's why I pay little attention to Sanders. He wants to protect the middle class, while the only way that a national polity can continue is if the middle class is destroyed.

Please explain.

Calling for universal serfdom?
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Offline g

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #5 on: November 10, 2015, 04:32:20 PM »
I'm not a huge fan of Sanders, but what he is (that exactly NO ONE else is)....is a Reformer. I'm not saying that his attempts at reform would fix anything, but nobody else in politics in either party is the least bit oriented toward reforming anything concerning Wall Street and banks.

That's a function of how crooked politics is and how money buys virtually any candidate of any party.

What's the point of reforming a system that requires growth, when there is no growth? Only a command economy can provide some measure of social justice when the economic pie is shrinking. (Please note: I'm not saying it will provide it, just that it can -- which is why I call for Green Libertarian Socialism.)

Anyway, that's why I pay little attention to Sanders. He wants to protect the middle class, while the only way that a national polity can continue is if the middle class is destroyed.

Hi Ka, I think I get your drift, but not sure that applies to the US.

We appear to be a very rich and blessed nation, endowed with many resources, an abundance of such for our populations size.

It would appear that some sensible policies of equitable wealth distribution in such a vast pool of wealth could be shard much more equally. At least able to preserve a middle class. Slow Growth or no Growth need not not be a hindrance either, stability and providing what is needed without mindless growth for growths sake.

There are many corporation shunned by investors on Wall Street because they have little or no growth, often referred to as cash cows. Their amongst my favorite investments because they pay big dividends and most shun them, making them very cheap relative to the growth stocks they adore.

Stability and plodding along on an even path can be desirable if current perceptions about them are changed.

We see the same attitude in population growth. Even doomers in our Diner decry and despair at the population declines in Japan, italy, China the most populous and fastest growing country on earth until recently, has just ended a one child policy because of fears of population decline.

What, some like myself ask, Is so terrible and horrible about a declining population in a world of scarce resources?  :icon_scratch: :dontknow:

Offline Ka

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #6 on: November 10, 2015, 08:32:05 PM »

Anyway, that's why I pay little attention to Sanders. He wants to protect the middle class, while the only way that a national polity can continue is if the middle class is destroyed.

Please explain.

Calling for universal serfdom?

By "middle class" I mean people with their own car, house, washing machine, flying vacations, etc. Resource limits sez that can't continue, hence, this energy-wasteful lifestyle can't continue. So it will be destroyed. One way for that to happen is to descend into universal serfdom. What I am calling for instead is a dictatorship of the Green Libertarian Socialist Party, whose mission is to transition to a state where everyone is materially poor, but fed, clothed, and sheltered, and might even have enough of an infrastructure to support a slow-speed internet, train vacations, and other goodies.

Offline K-Dog

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #7 on: November 10, 2015, 08:47:46 PM »

Anyway, that's why I pay little attention to Sanders. He wants to protect the middle class, while the only way that a national polity can continue is if the middle class is destroyed.

Please explain.

Calling for universal serfdom?

By "middle class" I mean people with their own car, house, washing machine, flying vacations, etc. Resource limits sez that can't continue, hence, this energy-wasteful lifestyle can't continue. So it will be destroyed. One way for that to happen is to descend into universal serfdom. What I am calling for instead is a dictatorship of the Green Libertarian Socialist Party, whose mission is to transition to a state where everyone is materially poor, but fed, clothed, and sheltered, and might even have enough of an infrastructure to support a slow-speed internet, train vacations, and other goodies.

I'm with you Trotsky but people are not going to give up flying vacations and washing machines without a fight.  Expect the emergence of a new hard boiled conservative mindset that will fight to preserve position all the way down by any means necessary.  The Green Libertarian Socialist Party will have competition for dictatorship.  Serious competition.  This will not end well.
Under ideal conditions of temperature and pressure the organism will grow without limit.

Offline Ka

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #8 on: November 10, 2015, 08:57:43 PM »

Hi Ka, I think I get your drift, but not sure that applies to the US.

We appear to be a very rich and blessed nation, endowed with many resources, an abundance of such for our populations size.

It would appear that some sensible policies of equitable wealth distribution in such a vast pool of wealth could be shard much more equally. At least able to preserve a middle class. Slow Growth or no Growth need not not be a hindrance either, stability and providing what is needed without mindless growth for growths sake.

I don't think so. The only way we have been able to maintain our current state is through stealing resources from the rest of the world, and I don't think we'll be able to continue to do so, especially after a global financial meltdown. My view is that we are lucky in that we have enough resources so that we can get through the zero point more or less intact, but not enough to return to our current wasteful lifestyles. Compared to most of the world we will have plenty of oil to keep the nation going, but not enough to support private cars or heat McMansions, and so on. Plus handle climate change refugees of California and Florida or what have you.



Offline Ka

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #9 on: November 10, 2015, 09:31:17 PM »

I'm with you Trotsky but people are not going to give up flying vacations and washing machines without a fight.  Expect the emergence of a new hard boiled conservative mindset that will fight to preserve position all the way down by any means necessary.  The Green Libertarian Socialist Party will have competition for dictatorship.  Serious competition.  This will not end well.

I can imagine one scenario where the GLS comes out on top. That is if there is a sudden financial breakdown, resulting in economic collapse and empty shelves and a week or two of riots. At that point the military and politicians decide to turn on their corporate chums and announce:
- martial law (to stop the riots)
- nationalization of the banks and all corporations involved in the production and distribution of food, and all utilities to keep the lights on and water flowing.
- restriction of fuel to those uses
- instruct the media to extol the virtues of "simple living", i.e., of being poor
- assign blame for the emergency to the corporatocracy.

Now why would the military (who will be the decision makers here -- the politicians are just there to make it all legal) do this? Well, they aren't dumb and maybe they can see the climate change/dwindling resources writing on the wall as well as we can. In other words, they too might see that socialism is the only means to keep a country together in a time of inevitable economic decline.

So the only function of the GLS pre-collapse is to provide a transition plan, and work out a system of checks and balances to make the situation tolerable, that the military can adopt post-collapse. Whether they will, of course, is unknown. They may prefer to be warlords, in which case too bad for everybody.

Offline Surly1

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2015, 01:50:58 AM »

I'm with you Trotsky but people are not going to give up flying vacations and washing machines without a fight.  Expect the emergence of a new hard boiled conservative mindset that will fight to preserve position all the way down by any means necessary.  The Green Libertarian Socialist Party will have competition for dictatorship.  Serious competition.  This will not end well.

I tend to agree. The GLS has no vocal advocates, whereas the forces of reaction and xenophobia are in ascendance all over the world. We already see a right wing rising in this country too, with all the assets of the Empire devoted to preserving the fortunes of the one per cent. They'll continue to advocate for privatization of everything they can see, smell or touch, to complete the looting of the public sector.

And then you'll have your universal serfhood.

If you pay attention to the NFL, last month they were flogging breast cancer and wearing pink. THis month, it's camuoflage, to honor the military and to elevate to the status of "heroes" those who have served the Empire.

Pentagon Paid Up To $6.8 Million Of Taxpayer Money To Pro Sports Teams For Military Tributes

Quote
WASHINGTON --  The Department of Defense doled out as much as $6.8 million in taxpayer money to professional sports teams to honor the military at games and events over the past four years, an amount it has “downplayed” amid scrutiny, a report unveiled by two Senate Republicans on Wednesday found.

Arizona Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake began looking into the Defense Department’s spending of taxpayer dollars on military tributes in June after they discovered the New Jersey Army National Guard paid the New York Jets $115,000 to recognize soldiers at home games.

The 145-page report released Wednesday dives deeper, revealing that 72 of the 122 professional sports contracts analyzed contained items deemed “paid patriotism” -- the payment of taxpayer or Defense funds to teams in exchange for tributes like NFL’s “Salute to Service.” Honors paid for by the DOD were found not only in the NFL, but also the NBA, NHL, MLB and MLS. They included on-field color guard ceremonies, performances of the national anthem, and ceremonial first pitches and puck drops. 

“Given the immense sacrifices made by our service members, it seems more appropriate that any organization with a genuine interest in honoring them, and deriving public credit as a result, should do so at its own expense and not at that of the American taxpayer,” the report states.

Your tax dollars at work. Just part of the militarization of everything.
"Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world's grief. Do justly now, love mercy now, walk humbly now. You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it."

Offline g

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #11 on: November 11, 2015, 04:41:45 AM »

Hi Ka, I think I get your drift, but not sure that applies to the US.

We appear to be a very rich and blessed nation, endowed with many resources, an abundance of such for our populations size.

It would appear that some sensible policies of equitable wealth distribution in such a vast pool of wealth could be shard much more equally. At least able to preserve a middle class. Slow Growth or no Growth need not not be a hindrance either, stability and providing what is needed without mindless growth for growths sake.

I don't think so. The only way we have been able to maintain our current state is through stealing resources from the rest of the world, and I don't think we'll be able to continue to do so, especially after a global financial meltdown. My view is that we are lucky in that we have enough resources so that we can get through the zero point more or less intact, but not enough to return to our current wasteful lifestyles. Compared to most of the world we will have plenty of oil to keep the nation going, but not enough to support private cars or heat McMansions, and so on. Plus handle climate change refugees of California and Florida or what have you.

Your scenario could well be correct, but I still have my doubts.

My problems are with the idea that we won't be able to exploit in a global financial meltdown, My view is it that situation might make it easier for us.

My views on autos and heat differ a bit as well. I can envision as situation where autos are used as a necessity again, rather than a luxury. Annual miles driven on the average auto going from 10,000 to 1 or 2 thousand just as a made up example. Heat is another where consumption could go down a sizable amount. The Jimmy Carter sweater, and heating of one or two rooms in the house only, extra blankets and very little heat at night can reduce our wasteful life style by a considerable amount in my view, trite as the solutions sound in today's wasteful world.

Who knows, it's all conjecture. Have a feeling the US is one of the better places to be located in such a situation, but of course, even that is debatable.

Offline K-Dog

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #12 on: November 11, 2015, 08:17:38 AM »

I'm with you Trotsky but people are not going to give up flying vacations and washing machines without a fight.  Expect the emergence of a new hard boiled conservative mindset that will fight to preserve position all the way down by any means necessary.  The Green Libertarian Socialist Party will have competition for dictatorship.  Serious competition.  This will not end well.

I tend to agree. The GLS has no vocal advocates, whereas the forces of reaction and xenophobia are in ascendance all over the world. We already see a right wing rising in this country too, with all the assets of the Empire devoted to preserving the fortunes of the one per cent. They'll continue to advocate for privatization of everything they can see, smell or touch, to complete the looting of the public sector.


Not quite true.  The GLS has at least a dozen advocates, some right here in the Diner.  But you are right in saying no vocal advocates because why risk life limb and neck advocating a system that the vast majority of the American public does not understand and hates simply because they have been told to hate it.  The only thing most Americans know about socialism is how to be critical of it.

"Isn't socialism where everybody has to work but gets paid the same so nobody gives a shit about working?  Dat's fucked up!"  <-  An average American in deep thought.

We have Bernie Sanders in the Senate and Kshama Sawant on the Seattle city council.  Ninety-five years ago Eugene Debs got a million votes but that campaign for president was run from his prison cell.  America prefers to put socialists in prison if their popularity grows.  Ask 100 random people on the street who Eugene Debs was now and if more than a 25% can answer correctly I owe you five bucks.


Noam is a personal hero of mine and I'm not alone, but Socialism is a political movement enjoyed by intellectuals who can never make up more than 15% of any population.  For the rest and particularly in America if you are a straight 'A' student then you think too much.  Most blindly follow the smiling face du-jour because thinking hurts.  Five-teen percent does not a quorum of deciders make besides which that 15% wastes a lot of time thinking instead of getting something done.

That socialism is not on the radar for the vast majority of Americans is best illustrated by imagining the size of the crowd you would have if you could take all the unemployed men in America who don't have two bits to their name but who yet insist on calling themselves Republican.  You would not be able to see across the crowd for it would stretch to the horizon.


That's a Donald Trunp for president beer stein if you don't know.  I don't think it will sell well; most of his supporters prefer a can.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2015, 08:33:25 AM by K-Dog »
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Offline Petty Tyrant

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #13 on: November 11, 2015, 09:09:12 AM »
What, some like myself ask, Is so terrible and horrible about a declining population in a world of scarce resources?  :icon_scratch: :dontknow:
.


We are supposed to need economic growth in gdp, with steady inflation to pay for the debt supply.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2015, 09:12:07 AM by Uncle Bob »
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Offline Eddie

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Re: A Wealth Inequality Article I Can Relate To
« Reply #14 on: November 11, 2015, 09:38:14 AM »
That socialism is not on the radar for the vast majority of Americans is best illustrated by imagining the size of the crowd you would have if you could take all the unemployed men in America who don't have two bits to their name but who yet insist on calling themselves Republican.  You would not be able to see across the crowd for it would stretch to the horizon.

Very true. Like Joe Bageant used to, I scratch my head on that one. It's got to be programming.



“Republican or Democrat, this nation's affluent urban and suburban classes understand their bread is buttered on the corporate side. The primary difference between the two parties is that the Republicans pretty much admit that they grasp and even endorse some of the nastiest facts of life in America. Republicans honestly tell the world: "Listen in on my phone calls, piss-test me until I'm blind, kill and eat all of my neighbors right in front of my eyes, but show me the money! Let me escape with every cent I can kick out of the suckers, the taxpayers, and anybody else I can get a headlock on, legally or otherwise." Democrats, in contrast, seem content to catalog the GOP's outrages against the Republic, showing proper indignation while laughing at episodes of The Daily Show. But they stand behind the American brand: imperialism. They "support our troops," though you will be hard put to find any of them who have served alongside them or who would send one of their own kids off to lose an eye or an arm in Iraq. They play the imperial game, maintain their credit ratings, and plan to keep the beach house and the retirement investments if it means sacrificing every damned Lynndie England in West Virginia.”


“Along with the concept of American Dream runs the notion that every man and woman is entitled to an opinion and to one vote, no matter how ridiculous that opinion might be or how uninformed the vote. It could be that the Borderer Presbyterian tradition of "stand up and say your rightful piece" contributed to the American notion that our gut-level but uninformed opinions are some sort of unvarnished foundational political truths. I have been told that this is because we redneck working-class Scots Irish suffer from what psychiatrists call "no insight".Consequently, we will never agree with anyone outside our zone of ignorance because our belligerent Borderer pride insists on the right to be dangerously wrong about everything while telling those who are more educated to "bite my ass!”

Can you believe they actually allow this stuff to be sold over there? Glad we got laws against that crap in this country." I remind him that the socialist party is probably the largest political party on the planet. "Aw bullshit!" he said. I asked, "Then what the hell do you think is the largest party?" "The Republican Party of course! We're the only country with real political parties." Now this is from a guy who has an MBA from one of the South's universities, holds local office, and has influenced public affairs.”


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