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Thread: What do you want to do with the little people?

  1. Top | #81
    Veteran Member WAB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rhea View Post
    This topic is about what a society should do with work-marginalized workers/citizens


    There are a lot of discussions about how mega wealth is okay because they "did something" that made them deserve to reap benefits on the labors of people who are not paid enough to live decently.
    There are also discussions of how automation is a great thing in pursuit of lower cost products and higher margins for investors.
    There are also discussions about how we need to stop using fossil fuels and go to nuclear, which needs far less labor.
    There are also discussions about how today's economy needs higher education or training to remain viable in a living wage.
    There are discussions about replacing fossil fuels with renewables that move the jobs to geographically new (and potentially crowded and expensive) areas.
    There are discussions about how a "market wage" is justifiable as the intersection between what a powerful employer will offer and a powerless worker will accept.

    There are many more discussions of various stripes that have one thing in common:
    They advocate for the reduction in jobs (or pay level) for those who are not trained to work on the Right Thing (tm)

    Here's my question for discussion and producing a viable answer:

    What do you DO with the people unable to train or move?

    Maybe they can't move because they are a caregiver for a disabled or elderly person who needs to remain.
    Maybe they can't go to college and become a programmer because they are in the lower half of intellectual capability - they just plain aren't smart enough.
    Maybe they can't go to college because they are a caregiver.
    Maybe ADHD makes them unable to perform a trade, and working at a big box store is what they can do - and they'd be happy there if only it paid enough to live on.
    Maybe they got sick from coal mining and would not be hired by a windmill firm due to the impending obligations?

    So what you we propose that we DO with all of these people?

    Do we want them to just die from starvation after their job are automated?
    Do we want to empty out the rural states and force all of the people there to move to squalid tenements near a factory in a high cost dense population?
    Do we want people who aren't smart enough to become engineers and doctors to just die of preventable diseases because they can't afford health care or a safe house?


    I think about all these people who are against progressive taxation or universal income or raised minimum wages, and I wonder
    (a) what is it you think will happen to all of these people? You think they'll suddenly become suitable for college? or
    (b) are you actually okay if they all just die?
    (c) what are justifiable reasons to allow someone to live (or be raised in) abject poverty?
    (d) if we don't think that, what should we DO to plan for them to continue living without abject poverty?
    (e) other? What else? What do you think should happen to them?
    I say we use them as food.






    A man should never be ashamed to own that he has been in the wrong, which is but saying in other words that he is wiser today than he was yesterday.
    - Alexander Pope

  2. Top | #82
    Fair dinkum thinkum bilby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Worldtraveller View Post
    The fact that we need to even have this discussion is fucking depressing.

    We need a minimum wage, indexed in such a way that we don't have to have this battle every time we want people to not have to suffer (I say we index it to congress' pay).

    AND we need UBI. UBI should be indexed in such a way as to always be equal to minimum wage.

    Taxes would start at 2.5X UBI, and be a exponential formula that caps out at ~95% around $2 million.
    An exponential formula never reaches 100%, so it never needs to 'cap out' at all. There shouldn't be an upper bound to the marginal tax payable on the next dollar.

  3. Top | #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by bilby View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Worldtraveller View Post
    The fact that we need to even have this discussion is fucking depressing.

    We need a minimum wage, indexed in such a way that we don't have to have this battle every time we want people to not have to suffer (I say we index it to congress' pay).

    AND we need UBI. UBI should be indexed in such a way as to always be equal to minimum wage.

    Taxes would start at 2.5X UBI, and be a exponential formula that caps out at ~95% around $2 million.
    An exponential formula never reaches 100%, so it never needs to 'cap out' at all. There shouldn't be an upper bound to the marginal tax payable on the next dollar.
    Yeah. I phrased it that way for the non-math people.

  4. Top | #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZiprHead View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Harvestdancer View Post

    Fascinating how I can dodge questions that were never asked.
    Yeah, no one else has ever asked you a question.

    Do you wonder why your posts are considered the most dishonest here?
    Every now and again I say "I've answered a bunch of your questions, now how about you answer one of mine. Oh you won't answer one of mine? Well I just won't answer any more of yours until you answer one of mine. So now you say I'm a dishonest dodge because I'm trying to get you to actually answer one question."

    That's why everyone thinks I'm almost as dishonest as you actually are
    No Biden, no KKK, no Fascist USA

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  5. Top | #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZiprHead View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Harvestdancer View Post

    Wish you were credible enough for that.
    That's strange since you are consistently being accused of dishonesty here.
    And what is that worth, the accusation of a left winger? You're very funny, Highness.

  6. Top | #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loren Pechtel View Post
    If a company behaved like a labor union it would be called price fixing and they would be punished and forced to stop doing it.
    Companies behave like labor unions all the time without it being price fixing and without being forced to stop doing it. It's not as though Warren Buffett and I are competing with each other to offer our customers lower prices. In our negotiations with our employees, suppliers and customers, he and I and the gazillions of other Berkshire Hathaway shareholders put up a united front, because that's a better strategy. When employees do the same, sauce for the goose, sauce for the gander.

    (If you're talking about a UAW-style union where all the companies in an industry have to buy from the same union, then you're right, companies aren't allowed to behave like that. But there's no reason unions have to behave like that. My father spent most of his career in a union that only represented employees of one employer.)

  7. Top | #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by GenesisNemesis View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Bomb#20 View Post

    By "don't allow unions to form", you mean "advise employees to vote no"? Do you perhaps also think it's fascist for anyone to run against your preferred candidate?
    Are you <expletive deleted> naive? People get fired for trying to form unions. Intelligent people can see through your <expletive deleted>.
    My, such a wordsmith. Firing people for trying to form unions is illegal, and your link was to an article about a company that wasn't doing that. If some companies do it, well, beating up scabs is illegal, but some unions do that.

  8. Top | #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by LoAmmo View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Rhea View Post
    Bomb, do you have anything at all to say on the topic of what you think should happen to people who lose jobs to automation and are not able to train for something more complex?

    Do you have anything to say on the topic of people who cannot survive on minimum wage and are unable to qualify for higher paying jobs?
    The Conservatives' suddenly-tied-tongues and refusal to honestly engage with your question do not come as a surprise to me;
    Why did you write that? There aren't any conservatives in this thread. Is "Conservative" your go-to categorization for everyone who disagrees with you? And whom are you talking about when you say "suddenly-tied-tongues and refusal to honestly engage"? You appear to be talking about me. The fact that you are unwilling to keep up with the thread and the fact that you don't give a rat's ass whether you're telling the truth about those in your outgroup do not make it okay for you to trump up false accusations.

    I also think [string of unevidenced ad hominem attacks snipped]

  9. Top | #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elixir View Post
    Somewhere between Moogly's appetizing suggestion...
    For the benefit of any who didn't recognize it, TGGM was riffing on an 18th-century essay called A Modest Proposal.

    Spend enough time here and you will come to realize that the mythical "conservative who tends toward commitment to intellect and rational thought" is an extinct species. In fact, "Higher caliber conservative" is an oxymoron in this post-Trump world.
    I would hold up Dwight D Eisenhower has a "higher caliber conservative" but today he would be regarded as a left wing socialist extremist by everyone to the right of the President Of Antifa.
    Spend enough time here and you will see a great many accusations like that one, long on self-congratulatory choir-preaching and short on factuality.

  10. Top | #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by TV and credit cards View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Bomb#20 View Post
    Your ideological adherence to illogical economic theories does not make you an expert on what I do, don't or can't know. We already had this argument back in the Adding rights thread. I asked you a question there. You declined to answer it, but the question didn't go away. For your convenience, here it is again:

    Do you think each worker making $10/hour is generating at least $15/hour in extra revenue?
    I do not know what you do. I know the CBO has estimated job losses should a fifteen dollar an hour minimum be set. But this is an estimate. And yes I will admit I have an ideological adherence to people making a living wage. That no one should live off of starvation wages and social services.
    That's a moral judgment, not an economic theory. The economic theory I was talking about you being ideologically committed to was the theory that it's reasonable to think raising the minimum wage isn't going to put a bunch of people out of work. A great many people put the cart before the horse and decide what a policy will result in based on whether they approve of it, instead of vice versa. It's wishful thinking. From the premises "Raising the minimum wage is good." and "Making poor people lose their jobs is bad.", it's quite popular to infer "Raising the minimum wage will not make any poor people lose their jobs."; but it's unsound reasoning. People reason that way because the alternative is accepting guilt for the consequences of their choices; and everybody wants to be the hero of his own narrative.

    Should the CBO estimates pan out, then we will deal with it if it needs dealing with.
    Well, you tell me if that would need dealing with. Rhea seemed to feel whether such things need dealing with is only a question her opponents need to address; she appears to be one of the above-mentioned wishful thinkers.

    I do not understand the point of your previously ignored question other than to steer the conversation.
    The point of it is that anybody who refuses to answer it is unqualified to have an opinion about whether raising the minimum wage will put people out of work. It's the horns of a dilemma. "Yes" implies counterfactual observations. "No" implies inevitable job losses.

    If a business cannot survive while paying it's employees a living wage then it does not deserve to.
    That's another moral judgment, not an economic theory. "Your business failed because it deserved to" is not an argument that your former employees now have well-paid jobs.

    But I think having to absorb the cost is what is at the root of the argument against a living wage. Just a guess.
    Guessing the opposing arguments is a technique for convincing yourself you're right, not a technique for proving you're right.

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