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Old 01-31-2014, 06:25 PM  
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Income Inequality and the real reason it needs to be addressed

Okay, the Left loves to rant about "fairness" when it comes to income inequality but that's a bunch of liberal BS. So let's get past the emotional arguments of fair vs. unfair and address why and when income inequality becomes a bad thing.

There comes a point in just about every imaginable scenario where too much of a even a good thing becomes a bad thing. What we have seen in the last decade and even more so in the last 5-6 years is just that. What's good for the rich and big corporations is starting to become bad for the country as a whole. The middle class is being weeded out by liberal politicians as well as what is amounting to nothing more than corporate greed.

A financially healthy middle class is needed for a strong economy. Unfortunately that is not what we have nor are we headed on a path to getting back to healthy. The middle class is what drives this country and it is disappearing for all the wrong reasons. While big business is cutting jobs or import\exporting jobs, creating an environment of job insecurity and stagnant wages, liberal politicians are squeezing more money out of the middle class with their failed policies.

When you look at the last several years, everything has risen except 2 key factors, jobs and wages. The cost of gas has risen, the cost of food has risen, the cost of health care is rising and the stock market is rising. Meanwhile jobs and wages are doing dick.

There comes a point where "what's mine is mine" becomes a bad thing. The rich and big corporations who have enjoyed record profits and a rising stock market are doing so for what is tantamount to nothing more than a fleecing of the middle class. Companies have laid off thousands of workers to increase profits in the name of "shareholder value". As the record profits come in we seem trillions being spent on non-productive things such as share buy-backs and such. Couple with the Bernanke influenced environment of low interest rates, the rich and big corps are feasting while everyone in the middle class continues to famine.

I am a capitalist and a free-market kind of guy but I can also see what is happening right in front of our eyes. Corporations have no loyalty to their employees and thus in the long run their customers. Wall St. now dictates every move of these companies with their "quarterly earnings estimates" and companies are allowing it to happen.

The best analogy I can come up with to describe the problem is one of losing weight. If you are overweight then losing weight is good and healthy. However, losing too much weight becomes unhealthy and though your initial goal was to watch the scale go down the point comes when the scale going down is now bad. Companies have got to start valuing their employees more and their CEO's a little less. The "shareholders" in which whose name all this cutting and thievery is done will benefit just the same if not more so. A healthy employment base gives companies the consumer base they ultimately need to grow.

Right now as Democrats are pushing the Immigration Reform issue so the can garner more voters, the Chamber of Commerce and big business is championing the issue in the name of cheaper labor.

The middle class is running out of money, folks. The jobs are not coming fast enough, the pay is not rising fast enough and the job security is running away too fast.

So when it comes down to it, it is not about what's fair and what isn't. It's about what is healthy for this country's economy and what isn't.
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:32 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by petegz28 View Post
Many are working fewer workers, longer hours for stagnant pay. Look, Man, it's right in front of your face and you even complain about it daily. You have record numbers of people on food stamps, you have increasing unemployment you have record profits and a record stock market and the largest income gap in recent history. Something, well a lot of things are broken and the current large corporate structure in this country is one of those things.

What I never seem to hear from either side of the isle is how to fix things outside of pipedream, bullshit like the liberal BS we hear or the trickle down BS we hear from corporatists that guise themselves as conservatives.
Given what I've already laid out, how do you operate as a responsible brick and mortar businessman who's getting his ass KICKED by some guy in Alta Dena with a stack of computers serving your potential customers' needs before they even walk into your business. More listless employees sitting around to help them if they happen to be socially media clueless and happen to wander in.

We have to figure out how to localize the innovations of technology.

Give them the Amazon experience a block from their house and convince them that it's good for their community.

Find a way to have exactly what they need, when they walk in, no matter what, cheaper than they can find it anywhere in the world.

Otherwise, it's clicky-clicky, wait a day. Pick it up in your doorstep, and no one in the community benefits except the consumer.
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:36 PM   #47
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In case, judging from my rep, some thought I was kidding.

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Old 01-31-2014, 09:37 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by Baby Lee View Post
Given what I've already laid out, how do you operate as a responsible brick and mortar businessman who's getting his ass KICKED by some guy in Alta Dena with a stack of computers serving your potential customers' needs before they even walk into your business. More listless employees sitting around to help them if they happen to be socially media clueless and happen to wander in.

We have to figure out how to localize the innovations of technology.

Give them the Amazon experience a block from their house and convince them that it's good for their community.

Find a way to have exactly what they need, when they walk in, no matter what, cheaper than they can find it anywhere in the world.

Otherwise, it's clicky-clicky, wait a day. Pick it up in your doorstep, and no one in the community benefits except the consumer.
I am not arguing that there is a sea change regarding e-commerce. But that isn't the root of the problem.
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:38 PM   #49
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I'm not trolling. I may be naive. You seem to be dodging my question.
Not dodging, just surprised that someone who portrays themselves as a conservative would ask such a question.

I will say this, if corporate conservatives continue to allow the income gap to grow then don't cry when the Obama's come after you for higher taxes and more entitlements for the lower classes because you are a part of the reason it is happening.
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:01 PM   #50
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**** it Pat, I thought you'd be able to talk about this without all of the defensive posturing and "what exactly do you means"... I've said atleast four times I'm not claiming to be some authority, it was basically an appeal to help me understand with facts, not defensive ass "what do you mean, define that exactly" BS, you know the gist of what I'm asking about.

I don't want rich peoples money, and I'd guess most other reasonable Americans don't either, but this subject brings out the snark and snot like no other with guys like you and HCF... but when you throw out such gems as "who said the middle class was indispensable anway?", I realize that something is *****D between Americans right now and isn't going away anytime soon.
I'm not being defensive at all, so rest easy.

I asked two very reasonable questions.

1) What you meant by "trickle down"? I'm not asking for a detailed economic analysis with footnotes here, I'm just asking a layman for a layman's description of how it works.

2) How do you know it hasn't worked? Let's stipulate that "the middle class is in a world of hurt right now, those good paying jobs that created the best middle class/strongest country in the world are leaving this country by the dozens every year". What makes you so confident that what's going on in those respects is due to whatever it is you think "trickle down" is?
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:04 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by petegz28 View Post
Not dodging, just surprised that someone who portrays themselves as a conservative would ask such a question.

I will say this, if corporate conservatives continue to allow the income gap to grow then don't cry when the Obama's come after you for higher taxes and more entitlements for the lower classes because you are a part of the reason it is happening.
Well, when you get over your shock, come on back and take a stab at giving me an answer. I've heard lots of people say things like you did about the middle class, but I don't recall hearing anyone explain why. Since you seem to think it's something every conservative should know, why don't you tell me why?
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:06 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by petegz28 View Post
Not crazy, it's the reality on the ground. Why do you think the Chamber of Commerce has Boehner and the House Repubs so ready to pass immigration reform? Because they want cheaper labor. That impacts the middle class. Companies making record profits but not hiring or increasing wages depletes the middle class. Increased cost of living by political parties passing failed policies in a stagnant economy depletes the middle class.

This is what is happening right now. And the end result is inevitable if things don't change.
If they bring in a bunch of dirt poor low class immigrants, won't that make our current lower class into an instant middle class? Problem solved?
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:09 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
Well, when you get over your shock, come on back and take a stab at giving me an answer. I've heard lots of people say things like you did about the middle class, but I don't recall hearing anyone explain why. Since you seem to think it's something every conservative should know, why don't you tell me why?
So you think it wise then to have 2 classes, rich and poor, with the rich paying for the poor? I think we know which will be the larger group. That's pretty ****ing communistic if I may say.
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:09 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
If they bring in a bunch of dirt poor low class immigrants, won't that make our current lower class into an instant middle class? Problem solved?
Okay, you're just trolling now.
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:13 PM   #55
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If we didn't have a middle class, they'd all be lower or upper. So, what makes a middle class so indispensable?
I'm still trying to understand this statement, do you really believe this, dude?

If the middle class is expendable then what you're proposing is medieval serfdom... nobles at the top and serfs at the bottom with nothing in between... that was a scary statement, didn't expect that from you.
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:28 PM   #56
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I'm not being defensive at all, so rest easy.

I asked two very reasonable questions.

1) What you meant by "trickle down"? I'm not asking for a detailed economic analysis with footnotes here, I'm just asking a layman for a layman's description of how it works.

2) How do you know it hasn't worked? Let's stipulate that "the middle class is in a world of hurt right now, those good paying jobs that created the best middle class/strongest country in the world are leaving this country by the dozens every year". What makes you so confident that what's going on in those respects is due to whatever it is you think "trickle down" is?
I'm in the middle of "Helix" right now, but in ultra layman terms it means give the ultra rich every break imaginable in hopes that the gazillions they're making somehow result in new business being developed/old business being expanded = job growth.

It doesn't work that way according to not only my amateur take, but people far more educated than myself... the money doesn't trickle down into new business development, the tax money stays with the government to squander as usual and the profit stays with the rich and their globalist banks.

Yes, its a simpleton take, but I'm guessing its not too far from the mark... back to my opiate of the masses.
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:53 PM   #57
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I'm still trying to understand this statement, do you really believe this, dude?

If the middle class is expendable then what you're proposing is medieval serfdom... nobles at the top and serfs at the bottom with nothing in between... that was a scary statement, didn't expect that from you.
I'm not proposing anything. I'm asking petegz28 why he said, "A financially healthy middle class is needed for a strong economy." He was apparently taken aback by my ignorance at first, but I trust that he's gathering himself and preparing a straightforward and honest answer.
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:20 PM   #58
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I'm in the middle of "Helix" right now, but in ultra layman terms it means give the ultra rich every break imaginable in hopes that the gazillions they're making somehow result in new business being developed/old business being expanded = job growth.

It doesn't work that way according to not only my amateur take, but people far more educated than myself... the money doesn't trickle down into new business development, the tax money stays with the government to squander as usual and the profit stays with the rich and their globalist banks.

Yes, its a simpleton take, but I'm guessing its not too far from the mark... back to my opiate of the masses.
Thanks for that answer. It's not the most generous or objective description I've ever heard, but I get what you're saying.

Here's how I'd describe Reagan's economic program. He wanted to lower marginal rates while closing loopholes on income taxes (including capital gains and business taxes) and reduce regulatory hurdles on business by eliminating unnecessary regulation and reforming what's left. The goal wasn't to enrich the upper class and hope they'd throw crumbs to the little people, it was to stimulate economic growth and therefore a better job climate and more profitable business for shareholder and employee alike.

So, if we can agree that we're basically describing the same "it", how can you be so sure that it has failed? We had two long periods of economic growth during the 80s and 90s in the wake of Reagan's realignment of Washington DC's relationship with the country. We also went through recessionary bumps like the S&L crisis, the dot-com bubble, and the housing bubble in the aftermath of Reagan. Would we have gone through those same strong growth periods if we had continued following a tax and spend, demand-side economic policy where businesses were allowed to continue fighting headwinds while the social safety net was beefed up to insulate the less fortunate from a lethargic economy? Would those recessionary periods have been avoided? Or would we be even less competitive with a much worse economy today instead?

Well, it looks like we get to see at least a minor experiment related to this question unfolding in front of our eyes. Barack Obama's economic policies are pretty close to the opposite of Reagan's and they don't seem to be doing too well. We're 5 years out from the housing bubble/financial collapse and, in your words, "the middle class is in a world of hurt right now". I'd add that we've been experiencing anemic growth at best and a lot of those jobs that didn't leave the country simply disappeared. Reagan's economic policies aren't to blame for Obama's "new normal".
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:46 PM   #59
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Thanks for that answer. It's not the most generous or objective description I've ever heard, but I get what you're saying.

Here's how I'd describe Reagan's economic program. He wanted to lower marginal rates while closing loopholes on income taxes (including capital gains and business taxes) and reduce regulatory hurdles on business by eliminating unnecessary regulation and reforming what's left. The goal wasn't to enrich the upper class and hope they'd throw crumbs to the little people, it was to stimulate economic growth and therefore a better job climate and more profitable business for shareholder and employee alike.

So, if we can agree that we're basically describing the same "it", how can you be so sure that it has failed? We had two long periods of economic growth during the 80s and 90s in the wake of Reagan's realignment of Washington DC's relationship with the country. We also went through recessionary bumps like the S&L crisis, the dot-com bubble, and the housing bubble in the aftermath of Reagan. Would we have gone through those same strong growth periods if we had continued following a tax and spend, demand-side economic policy where businesses were allowed to continue fighting headwinds while the social safety net was beefed up to insulate the less fortunate from a lethargic economy? Would those recessionary periods have been avoided? Or would we be even less competitive with a much worse economy today instead?

Well, it looks like we get to see at least a minor experiment related to this question unfolding in front of our eyes. Barack Obama's economic policies are pretty close to the opposite of Reagan's and they don't seem to be doing too well. We're 5 years out from the housing bubble/financial collapse and, in your words, "the middle class is in a world of hurt right now". I'd add that we've been experiencing anemic growth at best and a lot of those jobs that didn't leave the country simply disappeared. Reagan's economic policies aren't to blame for Obama's "new normal".
I was busy being a mindless beer drinking, tv addicted drone for my fave Friday night tv show...but that's the kind of no snark, heres my view post I was wanting.

Don't forget the record surplus Clinton left us though, I know its anathema and my hindsight is clouded by so many things as well, but atleast domestically, this country was FLUSH under his admin... pathetic here, weak there... but a huge surplus nonetheless, this nation flourished in many ways.

But to answer just one question, because you raise too many that are beyond my depth... "why do I think it failed"... it failed in general because he wasn't around to enforce the spirit of the law that he espoused, it must've soon become a boondoggle for greedy people who, in essence, have no country, their country is money.

"As long as I make money and pay taxes to this country, the proletariat can suck eggs, we don't need the American worker, let the Chinese do it for half that".

Bah, anyway, I honestly do appreciate the honest, no snark reply.
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:52 PM   #60
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But to answer just one question, because you raise too many that are beyond my depth... "why do I think it failed"... it failed in general because he wasn't around to enforce the spirit of the law that he espoused, it must've soon become a boondoggle for greedy people who, in essence, have no country, their country is money.
You're not answering the right question though. I'm not asking you to theorize on why it failed. I'm asking you why you *think* it failed. You're starting your answer with failure as a given. I'm suggesting to you that maybe you're assumption that it failed is wrong. Maybe it succeeded in making things as good as they are as opposed to worse.
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