Economics

Do you have a conversation topic that doesn't seem to fit any of the other conversations? Here is where we discuss ANYTHING about Joseph Campbell, comparative mythology, and more!

Moderators: Clemsy, Martin_Weyers, Cindy B.

Locked
CarmelaBear
Associate
Posts: 4087
Joined: Wed Nov 27, 2002 3:51 pm
Location: The Land of Enchantment

Post by CarmelaBear » Sat Jun 29, 2013 11:33 pm

Democratizing the wealth without government action:

http://www.community-wealth.org/
cadfael
Associate
Posts: 264
Joined: Fri Jan 10, 2003 10:17 pm

Free me from Greed!

Post by cadfael » Tue Jul 09, 2013 4:33 pm

Capitalism without government intervention is evil. However, the system is still evil with government intervention. Capitalism is just plain evil.

I grew up poor. As a result, I know what it is like to recieve the short end of the stick. Yes we should try to improve our lives through work but everyone is not created equal.There will always be poverty in capitalism. Capitalism thrives on poverty.

We need greater economic justice but some are still swept up in Reagan's belief in maximised economic freedom. The freedom that rationalizes greed.

This stand point is about America's economy. Therefore, if anyone feels left out please understand I am writing from my own stand point. In my own ideal world I would be self sufficient. I would have my own little farm and a rifle. Screw all economic systems. I would like my own personal economy. I would like to grow veggies and shoot rabbits.

Cadfael
CarmelaBear
Associate
Posts: 4087
Joined: Wed Nov 27, 2002 3:51 pm
Location: The Land of Enchantment

Post by CarmelaBear » Sat Jul 13, 2013 6:49 pm

Okay, here's my POV:

Socialism and similar systems are more ethical than capitalism, but capitalism is more practical in practice, with results that even the Chinese Marxists find compelling. I like capitalism with regulation and social safety nets. It's a mix and it works better than more pure alternatives.

Nothing works really well without concomitant disadvantages and unforeseen consequences, but like messy democracy, it's the best we can do with what we've got.

~
JamesN.
Associate
Posts: 2187
Joined: Sat Mar 04, 2006 2:46 am
Location: Nashville, Tn.

Post by JamesN. » Mon Jul 29, 2013 12:12 pm

Hey everyone. I came across this rather disturbing piece and wondered if anyone else has encountered anything similar. :shock:

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/exclusive ... 06005.html
What do I know? - Michael de Montaigne
SteveC
Associate
Posts: 1372
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2005 4:41 pm
Location: Massachusetts
Contact:

Post by SteveC » Mon Jul 29, 2013 1:09 pm

JamesN. wrote:Hey everyone. I came across this rather disturbing piece and wondered if anyone else has encountered anything similar. :shock:

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/exclusive ... 06005.html
It is the nature of a cyclical economy that one can say things are getting better or worse, and they will be right, eventually.

Reagan once said a depression is when your neighbor gets laid off, a recession is when you get laid off. Economic interpretation is rife with subjective bias.

That said, I believe objective analysis is still possible, but it tends to yield facts that people find troublesome. I believe denial is a bigger problem than the problem, because it is relatively easy to fix the math, but not so easy to fix the denial.

Case in point:
Democrats believe in higher taxes. Republicans believe in higher profits. Both create additional expense and inflation for others. ergo, both are wrong. To eliminate debt and inflation, we need low taxes and low profits....and a bunch of other things, too. If the two dominate parties are wrong, and all the people want higher wages, then inflation and debt, mathematically, can be the only winners. That volatility ensures that there will be somebody rising as others fall, making any prediction an exercise in confirmation bias.

The laws of mathematics are not subject to majority rule. We reap what we sow. All the numbers we write down have consequences.
You can only see the height of a mountain from its valley.


The radical myth towards which the helix aspires is beyond the desire for money or power, yet which has greater returns than all the power and money in the world could not achieve.
JamesN.
Associate
Posts: 2187
Joined: Sat Mar 04, 2006 2:46 am
Location: Nashville, Tn.

Post by JamesN. » Mon Jul 29, 2013 3:22 pm

Steve said:
The laws of mathematics are not subject to majority rule. We reap what we sow. All the numbers we write down have consequences
.

Hey Steve. I should have been a little more succinct as to the nature of my question. My " concerns " here have to do with the ( people ) that are impacted if it is true; not the math. :idea:

Thanks for the input though. :)
What do I know? - Michael de Montaigne
SteveC
Associate
Posts: 1372
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2005 4:41 pm
Location: Massachusetts
Contact:

Post by SteveC » Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:41 am

Sorry, the way I read stories like that is that there are always people in the vice, and getting squeezed, whether or not it is in the paper.

These 'facts' and statistics are just anecdotes that are presented as new. In fact, all these issues are old and constant. What is new is the person who is suffering. One person steps out, and another steps into the vice.

That's not to say that there is no change, and the aggregate numbers can't get worse or better, but those are minor fluctuations relative to how the system works.

A lot of people suffer under capitalism, and everyday there is a new group benefitting or being victimized by its inherent volatility. We are all buyer and seller, which means we are all victim and crime, in some way.
You can only see the height of a mountain from its valley.


The radical myth towards which the helix aspires is beyond the desire for money or power, yet which has greater returns than all the power and money in the world could not achieve.
JamesN.
Associate
Posts: 2187
Joined: Sat Mar 04, 2006 2:46 am
Location: Nashville, Tn.

Post by JamesN. » Thu Aug 01, 2013 3:11 am

Thanks Steve; that was a lot closer to what I was getting at.

I'm concerned about a lot of this sort of thing in the article I am seeing in the media; and I'm wondering if others are getting this same sense of growing social deterioration and lack of ability to deal adequately with it. I know economics have mechanisms that change under different circumstances but I grew up in this city where I reside and it has never in my lifetime been like this. I was not born during the depression so I can't evaluate that. But I'm seeing more and more fragmentation here and it bothers me a lot.
:roll:
What do I know? - Michael de Montaigne
ralfy
Associate
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2012 4:22 pm

Post by ralfy » Sat Aug 03, 2013 6:16 am

We are, unfortunately, living in a world where we face three predicaments:

1. Peak oil: conventional oil production peaked in 2005, and non-conventional production has lower energy returns and steeper decline curves. Much of manufacturing and agriculture is heavily geared towards the use of oil for fuel and petrochemicals, and it will take decades to make the transition to other energy sources. Thus, oil prices will remain high and pollution will increase.

2. Global warming: what scientists predicted would take place decades from now are now taking place. Positive feedback factors are taking their toll, leading to floods, droughts, heat waves, and stronger storms that lead to other crises, from species die-offs to food crop destruction.

3. Global financial crisis: much of the wealth of the world consists of money, and the amount continues to rise given financial speculation, where risks also lead to economic crises. That is why even as several governments report "recovery" and businesses profit oil and food prices remain high worldwide, leading to more social unrest.

Meanwhile, governments and financiers want the petro-dollar to remain, which explains invasions of countries like Iraq and destabilization of others, including Libya, Egypt, and Syria, together with threats against Iran.

BRIC and emerging markets, including China and Russia, have become stronger and are now not only consuming more resources, with several trying to move away from the petro-dollar.

What we have, then, is a situation that resembles (if not worse than) the economic instability of the 1930s coupled with oil shocks of the 1970s, but this time no game changers to allow for recovery and business as usual.

With that, we will have to come up with new views of economics, especially in light of localization and sustainability.
JamesN.
Associate
Posts: 2187
Joined: Sat Mar 04, 2006 2:46 am
Location: Nashville, Tn.

Post by JamesN. » Sat Aug 03, 2013 12:55 pm

ralfy wrote:We are, unfortunately, living in a world where we face three predicaments:

1. Peak oil: conventional oil production peaked in 2005, and non-conventional production has lower energy returns and steeper decline curves. Much of manufacturing and agriculture is heavily geared towards the use of oil for fuel and petrochemicals, and it will take decades to make the transition to other energy sources. Thus, oil prices will remain high and pollution will increase.

2. Global warming: what scientists predicted would take place decades from now are now taking place. Positive feedback factors are taking their toll, leading to floods, droughts, heat waves, and stronger storms that lead to other crises, from species die-offs to food crop destruction.

3. Global financial crisis: much of the wealth of the world consists of money, and the amount continues to rise given financial speculation, where risks also lead to economic crises. That is why even as several governments report "recovery" and businesses profit oil and food prices remain high worldwide, leading to more social unrest.

Meanwhile, governments and financiers want the petro-dollar to remain, which explains invasions of countries like Iraq and destabilization of others, including Libya, Egypt, and Syria, together with threats against Iran.

BRIC and emerging markets, including China and Russia, have become stronger and are now not only consuming more resources, with several trying to move away from the petro-dollar.

What we have, then, is a situation that resembles (if not worse than) the economic instability of the 1930s coupled with oil shocks of the 1970s, but this time no game changers to allow for recovery and business as usual.

With that, we will have to come up with new views of economics, especially in light of localization and sustainability.

Welcome to the forums Ralfy, Glad to have you with us.

Some interesting points you raise. I wish I could spend more time but unfortunately I have some tasks and issues I am involved with at the moment. Others may have thoughts here but I think there are two things to bear in mind with what you are offering.

1.) As to the economic aspect; yes I think it is inter-active and global, and yes fossil fuels and politics; both governmentally and financially speaking are large contributors and drivers as far as what created this mess IMHO. But also there is the philosophical assumption that the mechanics of the markets are the main over-riding issue that controls the dynamics in play. I would suggest that " economic materialism ": ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economic_materialism ) and the human dimension also are a major factor. Not just as consumerism; but as a " mindset ". The 2008 Wall Street debacle showed that.

2.) But the real game changer to me coming down the road will be " the environment ". As far as understanding the far reaching implications this will have on everything Joseph Campbell had a phrase that I thinks fits looking at this scenario very well: " Like standing on a whale fishing for minnows. " The problem as I see this part of the issue is not only the whale, but the water surrounding the whale that we " all " swim in. :idea:

What troubles me most about coming to grips with this whole conundrum is the widening disconnect I see with various groups of people and the suffering taking place; ( in plain view in some instances ); and the misunderstanding IMO that the market is really going to fix what caused any of this; ( politics not withstanding ). I think Joe's point about " Transcendence "; seeing that ( you and the other are one ); as a metaphysical insight really is going to play a part in this oversight; ( not only as compassion ); but if humanity is going to be able to survive. ( My personal view here of course. ) :wink:

Cheers
What do I know? - Michael de Montaigne
ralfy
Associate
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2012 4:22 pm

Post by ralfy » Tue Aug 06, 2013 1:52 pm

Definitely, but also to maintain a middle class lifestyle. We can see this in details on ecological footprints:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_c ... _footprint

The global ave. ecological footprint is around 2.7 global hectares per person, equivalent to that of Turkey. The bio-capacity of the world is only around 1.8 global hectares, equivalent to that of Cuba. The footprint needed to support a middle class lifestyle is several times higher than bio-capacity.
CarmelaBear
Associate
Posts: 4087
Joined: Wed Nov 27, 2002 3:51 pm
Location: The Land of Enchantment

Post by CarmelaBear » Wed Aug 14, 2013 3:15 am

In the US, the economy has shifted dramatically toward government-sponsored welfare for the rich who are allowed to reap astoundingly ginormous profits from the lowest wages since the Great Depression and be exempt from the taxes they paid during the Reagan era.

Historically, more American children are raised in single parent-single earner households than ever before (not to be confused with unmarried or extended family homes). Our public education and our entire governmental apparatus is so dysfunctional that it savages the lives of the majority of the poor (who are white) and disproportionately punishes anyone who is born dark, female or "different". We attach the profit motive to criminalizing any characteristic associated with our perennial American scapegoats; young black and Latino men (characteristics like poverty, drug use, rebellion or unfamiliarity). It is a cradle-to-grave system of harassment, imprisonment and killing.

Class-obsessed Europe has more upward mobility than Americans. Babies born to poor women are the poorest Americans, with more social disadvantages than 17th century children born out of wedlock. The young are pushed out and kept out of both school and jobs. Over 6 million Americans have only one form of income: food stamps.

There is a deliberate impoverishment of Americans. Noting that most Americans experience joblessness, near-poverty or actual poverty at least once or repeatedly in their lives, this nearly universal experience of poverty and near-poverty is attributed to individual mistakes and "inferiority of character".

The more money the welfare-recipient banks pile up, the fewer loans they make. The more profits the corporations earn and keep, (tax free like mega-churches), the fewer jobs they create and the less they pay their current employees. The poorer Americans get, the more they love and support the rich, whom they try to emulate and please like infants at mommy's knee. Struggling Americans adamantly reject the protections they so desperately need for fear of alienating the wealthy. They lack sympathy for those whom they surpass, yet oddly, Americans blame themselves for not being part of the one percent.

The more the rich colleges accumulate millions and billions for their endowment funds, the more junk infrastructure they build, while raising tuition and forcing students to assume ungodly amounts of debt to pay for gaudy crap.

Government works overtime to avoid stimulating demand for the goods and services of everyone from the individual to the business elite. They seem embarrassed by the American will to be a contributing part of the economy. What's up with that?

If I were recognized for being a real citizen with a serious voice, I would make sure that those who most benefit from our people, our economy and our government should pay taxes the way they did under Reagan. Dangerous status quo political forces are pitting environmentalism against economic progress and fear of social groups against a legitimate concern for the safety and well-being of actual members of our real community (including those who serve as the imaginary monsters of our poverty and color nightmares).

The answer is for the real people to recognize our common issues and take action in a concerted fashion. This may be impossible in the current social and political climate. If that is the case, then the people deserve to sleep in the bed they've gone to such trouble to make. They can follow their precious rich demons into the scorched abyss of their own economic hell.

So sayeth Carmela.

~
Andreas
Associate
Posts: 2274
Joined: Sun Aug 23, 2009 6:07 am

Post by Andreas » Wed Aug 14, 2013 11:06 am

The one percent only cares about their interests and power. They do not want to help anyone and are not helping the economy but what they do well is delude enough people so that they still maintain their status quo.

Anyway, the problem with economy today to a large extend is that the money the one percent has accumulated are not circulated. They keep it safe in their caves like the dragons in the old myths.
CarmelaBear
Associate
Posts: 4087
Joined: Wed Nov 27, 2002 3:51 pm
Location: The Land of Enchantment

Post by CarmelaBear » Wed Aug 14, 2013 11:51 am

Andreas wrote:
Anyway, the problem with economy today to a large extend is that the money the one percent has accumulated are not circulated. They keep it safe in their caves like the dragons in the old myths.
Exactly. They are afraid. Their job is to save for the day when they are faced with their own mortality and lack of control over something valuable. They safeguard the priceless treasure of an identity that proves their worth. The one with the most is the best, the smartest, and most of all, a god among men.

Who would not want to live atop Mount Olympus and solve everything with fire and a loud roar?

~

Poor Bloomberg. He has dangerous dark people living free in his City. He needs every last nickel to pay goons to stop and frisk people for the suspicious status of being young, male and dark.

Beyond the darkness of the skin, there be dragons.

:twisted:
jim baird
Associate
Posts: 45
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:37 pm

Post by jim baird » Wed Aug 14, 2013 2:44 pm

"...The more the rich colleges accumulate millions and billions for their endowment funds, the more junk infrastructure they build, while raising tuition and forcing students to assume ungodly amounts of debt to pay for gaudy crap..."

That is so happening at the big land grant U. near me. They figured out how to make money off relentless building campaigns and grandiose designs, while jacking up tuition and fees and preying on a lottery funded widely dispersed scholarship. Tuition and fees there have tripled in the last decade. The education biz is a lot like the war biz now.
Locked