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sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #300 on: March 30, 2019, 06:48:11 AM »
Go be poor somewhere else: shakytown crowdfunds effort to stop homeless shelter

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/mar/28/san-francisco-gofundme-homeless-shelter-embarcadero

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sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #301 on: April 02, 2019, 08:43:34 PM »
Suwandi et al. review the rape of the global south: the new imperialism is based on labor arbitrage

"commodity chains can be seen as fastened at the center of the world economy, connecting production, located primarily in the global South, to final consumption and the financial coffers of monopolistic multinational firms, located primarily in the global North."

"At issue is the way in which today’s global monopolies in the center of the world economy have captured value generated by labor in the periphery within a process of unequal exchange, thus getting “more labour in exchange for less.” "

"value added, associated with such commodity chains, as we shall see, is disproportionately attributed to economic activities in the wealthier countries at the center of the system, although the bulk of the labor occurs in the poorer nations of the periphery or the global South."

"much of the immense value capture associated with the global labor arbitrage circumvents production in the center economies, at the expense of workers there who have seen their jobs offshored. This has contributed to the amassing of vast pyramids of wealth disconnected from economic growth in the center economies themselves"

"net resource transfers from developing and emerging economies to rich countries were estimated at $2 trillion in 2012 alone"

"the globalization of production is built around a vast chasm in unit labor costs between center and periphery economies, reflecting much higher rates of exploitation in the periphery. This reflects the fact that the difference in wages is greater than the difference in productivity between the global North and the global South"

"This enormous gulf between global North and global South arises from a system that allows for the free international mobility of capital, while tightly restricting the international mobility of labor."

"Although labor is still largely constrained within national borders due to immigration policies, global capital and commodities have far more freedom to move around, further heightened in recent years due to trade liberalization."

"The global labor arbitrage is made possible in part by what Marx refers to as the industrial reserve army of the unemployed—which in this case is on a global scale, thus a global reserve army of labor ... the integration of the workforce of former socialist countries (including China) and formerly heavily protectionist countries (such as India) into the global economy, with the resulting expansion of the size of both the global labor force and its reserve army.[Ref 54] Also central to the creation of this reserve army is the depeasantization of a large portion of the global periphery through the spread of agribusiness.[Ref 55] This forced movement of peasants from the land has resulted in the growth of urban slum populations"

"While competition among corporations is limited to oligopolistic rivalry, competition among workers of the world (especially those in the global South) is greatly intensified by increasing the relative surplus population. This divide-and-rule strategy serves to integrate “disparate labor surpluses, ensuring a constant and growing supply of recruits to the global reserve army” who are “made less recalcitrant by insecure employment and the continual threat of unemployment."

"labor values generated by production are “captured” and not registered as arising in the peripheral countries due to asymmetries in power relations, in which multinational corporations are the key conduits"

"an enormous gross markup on labor costs (rate of surplus value) amounting to superexploitation, both in the relative sense of above-average rates of exploitation and also, frequently, in the absolute sense of workers paid less than the cost of the reproduction of their labor power. "

Long, but worth reading:

https://monthlyreview.org/2019/03/01/global-commodity-chains-and-the-new-imperialism/

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sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #302 on: April 02, 2019, 08:52:38 PM »
Simon interviews Hudson on the origins of debt slavery and jubilee:

Simon: " the Greeks and the Romans learned about interest-bearing debt from their contacts with Middle Eastern civilizations, but tragically failed to institute programs of Clean Slate debt amnesty. Their failure has been a kind of albatross around the neck of Western economies ever since."

Hudson: " Liberty for them was the liberty to destroy that of the population at large. Instead of cancelling debts and restoring land tenure to the population, the oligarchy created the Senate that protected the right of creditors to enslave labor and seize public as well as private lands (just as had occurred in Athens before Solon). Instead of restoring a status quo ante of free cultivators — free of debt and tax obligations, as Sumerian amargi and Babylonian misharumand andurarum meant — the Roman oligarchy accused anyone of supporting debtor rights and opposing its land grabs of “seeking kingship.” Such men were murdered, century after century."

Hudson: "Rome was turned into an oligarchy, an autocracy of the senatorial families. Their “liberty” was an early example of Orwellian Doublethink. It was to destroy everybody else’s liberty so they could grab whatever they could, enslave the debtors and create the polarized society that Rome became."

Hudson: "Once there were no more kingdoms for Rome to destroy, it collapsed from within. It was basically a looting economy. And it didn’t do more than the British colonialists did: It only scratched the surface. It didn’t put in place the means of production that would create enough money for them to grow productively. Essentially, Rome was a financial rentier state."

Hudson: " debt cancellations were not a diffusionist policy from the East, but a spontaneous pragmatic response such as was being widely advocated as far west as Rome"

Hudson: "We see a balance of forces in the ancient Near East, thanks to the fact that its rulers had authority to cancel debt and restore land that wealthy individuals had taken from smallholders. These kings were powerful enough to prevent the rise of oligarchies that would reduce the population to debt peonage and bondage (and in the process, deprive the palace of revenue and corvée labor, and even the military service of debtors owing their labor to their private creditors). We don’t have any similar protection in today’s Western Civilization. That’s what separates Western Civilization from the earlier Near Eastern stage. Modern financialized civilization has stripped away the power to prevent a land-grabbing creditor oligarchy from controlling society and its laws."

Hudson: "What they call a “free market” is an unmixed monolithic, centrally planned financialized economy with freedom for the oligarchy to impoverish the rest of society. That was achieved by landlordism monopolizing the land in feudal Europe, and it is done by finance today."

I shall have to read Hudson's book. This interview is at

https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2019/04/the-delphic-oracle-was-their-davos-a-four-part-interview-with-michael-hudson-about-his-forthcoming-book-the-collapse-of-antiquity-part-1.html

sidd

sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #303 on: April 05, 2019, 10:11:14 PM »
Rich white people want the homeless to go die quietly out of sight:

" “The optics on this are stunning. You have very affluent land owners who are fighting against impoverished San Franciscans whose very lives are at risk because of the housing crisis,” she says. “And who are we talking about? Who is homeless? Primarily people of color, primarily folks who have disabilities or who are elderly people. To equate an entire class of people with crime is the foundation of prejudice.” "

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/apr/04/san-francisco-mayor-clashes-with-affluent-residents-homeless-shelter

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sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #304 on: April 05, 2019, 10:13:30 PM »
UK cuts welfare while increasing tax breaks for the rich:

"on average, households in the fourth and fifth income quintiles (the top 40%) receive more in tax relief than households in the poorest fifth get in means-tested benefits."

https://www.theguardian.com/inequality/2019/apr/05/government-accused-of-promoting-inequality-by-stealth

Meanwhile the rich wonder why Brexit happened.

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sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #305 on: April 18, 2019, 09:27:41 PM »
Serfdom blues in merrie olde englande:

" about 25,000 landowners – typically members of the aristocracy and corporations – have control of half of the country."

“A few thousand dukes, baronets and country squires own far more land than all of middle England put together.”

" one effect of the sale of public land was that the public lost democratic control of that land and it could not then be used, for example, for housing or environmental improvements."

https://www.theguardian.com/money/2019/apr/17/who-owns-england-thousand-secret-landowners-author

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bluesky

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #306 on: April 27, 2019, 08:27:29 PM »
Global warming may boost economic inequality
By Warren CornwallApr. 22, 2019 , 3:40 PM
"Over the past half-century, climate change has been blamed for heat waves, flooding, and rising seas. Now, researchers say warmer temperatures are widening the chasm separating richer and poorer countries, effectively boosting the economies of many wealthy polluters while dampening growth in much of the developing world. As a result, inequality between the haves and have-nots is already 25% greater than it would be in a cooler world, the paper asserts.
Though he disagrees about the numbers, University of California, Berkeley, economist Solomon Hsiang says the paper provides clear evidence that climate change has stunted economies in the developing world. “The study’s statement that warming should have already harmed economic opportunities in poor countries is extremely important,” he wrote in an email.
The new work builds on previous research that found economic activity peaks at an average temperature of 13°C. Call it a “Goldilocks” condition that’s neither too hot nor too cold. Lower temperatures can hamper weather-dependent sectors like agriculture, but hotter temperatures can wither crops, sap workers’ energy, and exacerbate social conflicts. That study found that climate change could reduce overall global economic output by 23% by 2100."

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/04/global-warming-may-boost-economic-inequality


sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #307 on: April 30, 2019, 10:27:02 PM »
Starve the poor:

"Stephen Smith, 64, died in an emaciated state "

" his weight had dropped to six stones (84 lbs./38 kgs.)"

"Smith failed a DWP Work Capability Assessment (WCA) "

"more than £4,000 awarded in back payments for benefits denied ... will be used to pay for his funeral."

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/04/30/step-a30.html

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magnamentis

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #308 on: April 30, 2019, 10:54:38 PM »
some will probably like it ;)

sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #309 on: May 06, 2019, 11:42:00 PM »
Health insurance and the lack thereof: murder-suicide as terminal care plan

"a man called 911 to report that he had shot his wife and was prepared to take his own life. "

"  after the wife had surgery eight months ago, her health began declining rapidly and she developed several health conditions, including dementia."

"The medical bills were piling up, and neighbors told News4Jax that John Thombleson had said their insurance was expiring, leaving them no way to pay for the mounting expenses. "

"The couple were high school sweethearts and had been married 47 years. "

"the last time he spoke with John Thombleson, the conversation was about the couple potentially losing their home because of their mounting medical bills. "

https://www.news4jax.com/news/local/jacksonville/family-husband-kills-wife-then-himself-in-mercy-shooting-

I know more than one person without insurance who have flat out told me their plan is a fifth of whisky and a firearm. I knew two people who took the suicide way out. Late stage capitalism at its finest.

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b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #310 on: May 07, 2019, 06:41:26 AM »
This is not a function of capitalism. Other capitalist countries have universal healthcare.

This is due to a two right-wing parties system.

sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #311 on: May 07, 2019, 07:34:42 AM »
Re: "health care not a function of capitalism"

Well, would the formulation "late stage capitalism which has captured the regulators" satisfy ?

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b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #312 on: May 07, 2019, 07:43:18 AM »
The US had a lag of universal health care even before Reagan and the neoliberal revolution, right Sidd?

sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #313 on: May 07, 2019, 09:13:52 AM »
It started going downhill in the late seventies, when gutting of defined benefit plans began. Really took off under reagan.

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #314 on: May 10, 2019, 01:33:26 AM »
Suicide as exit:

"An 81-year-old woman killed herself after running out of money when her pension was frozen due to an administrative error."

"The DWP told Mr Worrall that her basic pension should have continued "

"A DWP spokesman said: “Our thoughts are with the family and friends ... We apologise unreservedly ..." "

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/may/09/woman-81-killed-herself-after-pension-was-frozen-in-error

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sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #315 on: May 10, 2019, 01:35:33 AM »
Too sick to work ? Pay for your substitute

"On top of footing medical bills, she has to pay for a substitute teacher ..."

"Under a 1976 California law, the cost for the substitute teacher will be deducted from the teacher's salary. "

https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/09/health/teacher-breast-cancer-substitute-pay-trnd/index.html

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #316 on: May 10, 2019, 03:26:23 AM »
Trump Administration Considering Changes That Would Redefine The Poverty Line
https://www.npr.org/2019/05/09/721559472/trump-administration-considering-changes-that-would-redefine-the-poverty-line

The Trump administration is considering changing the way the government measures poverty, which has anti-poverty groups worried that many low-income individuals will be pushed off assistance programs such as food stamps, Medicaid and Head Start.

The possible change would involve adjusting the poverty line annually using a different inflation measure, one that would result in a slower increase over time.

"They have a goal, and the goal is to cut people of low or moderate income off of government assistance," Sherman said of the administration. He noted that the idea is being floated at the same time that the White House is proposing work requirements and steep budget cuts for safety net programs 
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

Insensible before the wave so soon released by callous fate. Affected most, they understand the least, and understanding, when it comes, invariably arrives too late

ASILurker

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #317 on: May 10, 2019, 11:11:13 AM »
Remember the 'good old days' of Share Croppers in the south? Some people see a thriving opportunity for Tesla to move into Ridesharing and Robotaxis .... as Uber hits it's IPO and Lyft coming soon.

Moral of the Story - DO NOT believe everything you are told by Corporate Giants and Know-it-Alls
There are all kinds of variations how Uber and others in the Gig Economy are operating in the world from nation to nation. Such as no Uber in France. Here's another example

Delivery rider wins unfair dismissal case against Foodora
They said he was an "independent contractor" the Courts disagreed.
https://www.abc.net.au/radio/programs/am/delivery-rider-wins-unfair-dismissal-case-against-foodora/10507354

The very same day this happened ...
Foodora enters into administration despite claims it was 'solvent'
Owing ~$8 million to riders and $ millions more to the Tax Office
https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-08-17/foodora-enters-into-administration/10133620

Then comes today - Global Legal Precedent Set against Gig Economy Operators

Ex-Foodora riders will get $2.27m payout
Nearly 1700 former Foodora delivery riders will receive a total of $2.27 million in back-pay, the Transport Workers Union says.

Unfortunately another ~5,000 riders didn't bother to apply under the Class Action - so Foodora (and the Administrators of) got away with Highway Robbery
https://www.news.com.au/national/breaking-news/exfoodora-riders-will-get-227m-payout/news-story/3caf5f146919e9c05043ec3714a67d97

AUDIO analysis - Food delivery riders have win back-payments from Foodora, setting gig economy precedent
https://www.abc.net.au/radio/programs/pm/food-delivery-riders-have-win-back-payments-from-foodora/11102612


Foodora owes $8 million to former delivery workers
The failed food delivery company owes nearly $8 million in unpaid wages and superannuation, but its former workers will only get back a small fraction of that in their wallets.

Foodora unable to repay Australian debts, as it owes $28m 'loan' to German parent company
Foodora went into administration owing unpaid wages and superannuation, penalties and interest in Australia — and $28.3 million in "loans" to its German parent company Delivery Hero.

seancoulter

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #318 on: May 10, 2019, 03:39:01 PM »
Global warming may boost economic inequality
By Warren CornwallApr. 22, 2019 , 3:40 PM
"Over the past half-century, climate change has been blamed for heat waves, flooding, and rising seas. Now, researchers say warmer temperatures are widening the chasm separating richer and poorer countries, effectively boosting the economies of many wealthy polluters while dampening growth in much of the developing world. As a result, inequality between the haves and have-nots is already 25% greater than it would be in a cooler world, the paper asserts.
Though he disagrees about the numbers, University of California, Berkeley, economist Solomon Hsiang says the paper provides clear evidence that climate change has stunted economies in the developing world. “The study’s statement that warming should have already harmed economic opportunities in poor countries is extremely important,” he wrote in an email.
The new work builds on previous research that found economic activity peaks at an average temperature of 13°C. Call it a “Goldilocks” condition that’s neither too hot nor too cold. Lower temperatures can hamper weather-dependent sectors like agriculture, but hotter temperatures can wither crops, sap workers’ energy, and exacerbate social conflicts. That study found that climate change could reduce overall global economic output by 23% by 2100."

Visit this link https://au.edubirdie.com/case-study-help to find different case studies on this crucial matter. People should learn about the consequences of such things so they can be well prepared.
Global warming will boost not only economic inequality but also a mass migration from poor regions like Africa to Europe. From my point, it will cause serious problems due to rising nationalism in some countries in Europe.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2019, 09:09:37 AM by seancoulter »

sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #319 on: May 11, 2019, 09:11:48 AM »
Hang around outside the emergency room forawhile. It might save you some money. Or you might die. Or your kid.

https://www.vox.com/health-care/2019/5/10/18526696/health-care-costs-er-emergency-room

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Klondike Kat

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #320 on: May 11, 2019, 02:36:27 PM »
Global warming may boost economic inequality
By Warren CornwallApr. 22, 2019 , 3:40 PM
That study found that climate change could reduce overall global economic output by 23% by 2100."

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/04/global-warming-may-boost-economic-inequality
Global warming will boost not only economic inequality but also a mass migration from poor regions like Africa to Europe. From my point, it will cause serious problems due to rising nationalism in some countries in Europe.

Economic inequality tends to be greatest during boom times, when wealth is abundant, just look at the recent expansion since the last downturn.  Recessions tend to be an equalizer.  Mass migration tends to minimize inequality, as migrants seek better jobs.  I doubt you are trying to say that global warming will lead to an economic boom.

b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #321 on: May 11, 2019, 03:26:45 PM »
Economic inequality tends to be greatest during boom times, when wealth is abundant, just look at the recent expansion since the last downturn.  Recessions tend to be an equalizer.  Mass migration tends to minimize inequality, as migrants seek better jobs.  I doubt you are trying to say that global warming will lead to an economic boom.

These are extraordinary claims, needing extraordinary evidence.

Counterevidence would be >> "Results suggest that income inequality before the crisis potentially contributed to a severer output drops during the crisis of 2007-2008. The effect of the overall population inequality (Gini index) has been found severer than the one of the top 1% earners’ income share." Link >> https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/87739/1/MPRA_paper_87739.pdf

Economics would argue inequality is casing recessions.

Why economic inequality leads to collapse Link >> https://www.theguardian.com/business/2012/feb/05/inequality-leads-to-economic-collapse

Klondike Kat

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #322 on: May 12, 2019, 06:08:56 AM »
Economic inequality tends to be greatest during boom times, when wealth is abundant, just look at the recent expansion since the last downturn.  Recessions tend to be an equalizer.  Mass migration tends to minimize inequality, as migrants seek better jobs.  I doubt you are trying to say that global warming will lead to an economic boom.

These are extraordinary claims, needing extraordinary evidence.

Counterevidence would be >> "Results suggest that income inequality before the crisis potentially contributed to a severer output drops during the crisis of 2007-2008. The effect of the overall population inequality (Gini index) has been found severer than the one of the top 1% earners’ income share." Link >> https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/87739/1/MPRA_paper_87739.pdf

Economics would argue inequality is casing recessions.

Why economic inequality leads to collapse Link >> https://www.theguardian.com/business/2012/feb/05/inequality-leads-to-economic-collapse

It is not rocket science.  The highest earnings have the greatest exposure to the market, in both investments and bonuses.  Check out the graph about inequality before and after recessions.

http://charleshughsmith.blogspot.com/2014/04/want-to-fix-incomewealth-inequality.html?m=1

b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #323 on: May 12, 2019, 08:11:20 AM »
Kat, this graph shows nothing of that sort. This is not evidence for your claim.

Quote
This chart shows how access to the Fed's free-money spigot causes the very top layer of owners of capital to outpace their less-wealthy peers:

Are you trolling me?

Klondike Kat

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #324 on: May 12, 2019, 03:07:59 PM »
Kat, this graph shows nothing of that sort. This is not evidence for your claim.

Quote
This chart shows how access to the Fed's free-money spigot causes the very top layer of owners of capital to outpace their less-wealthy peers:

Are you trolling me?

Trolling?  Are you kidding me?  Yes, it did show how the outpaced their wealthy peers during economic boom times. But is also showed how their income dropped much more dramatically during recessions.  This is not an extraordinary claim, as it can be confirmed in all the data.

b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #325 on: May 12, 2019, 03:33:16 PM »
Kat, when a billionaire has stocks (and this is pretty common for people like that) and the recession kicks in, the stock market would go down, so would the wealth and income of said person. This is what you see in this graph. It has nothing to do with inequality.

Klondike Kat

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #326 on: May 13, 2019, 12:17:34 AM »
Kat, when a billionaire has stocks (and this is pretty common for people like that) and the recession kicks in, the stock market would go down, so would the wealth and income of said person. This is what you see in this graph. It has nothing to do with inequality.

So, the billionaires dividends, stock bonuses, and investments do not count towards their income?

b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #327 on: May 13, 2019, 07:36:27 AM »
No, because after the recession is over their wealth is reinstalled (as you can clearly see in the graph). They are economically in a position to wait it out.

Klondike Kat

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #328 on: May 13, 2019, 03:17:45 PM »
No, because after the recession is over their wealth is reinstalled (as you can clearly see in the graph). They are economically in a position to wait it out.

Yes, it is reinstalled.  However, that is largely because the economy rebounded.  Should the economy continue to tank, the graph indicates that their wealth will follow suit.  Hence, a falling economy would hit their purse strings harder, leading to diminished inequality.

sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #329 on: May 14, 2019, 11:52:39 PM »
Poor and sick ? Can't pay medical bills ? Lawsuit in your future.

"Johns Hopkins Hospital has a shocking record of hounding low income patients for medical debt"

" filed more than 2,400 lawsuits in Maryland courts seeking payment of alleged medical debt"

"For Hopkins, the payoff is minor, but for the families they target the consequences can be devastating"

"of the top 10 zip codes where Hopkins medical debt defendants reside, nine are located in Baltimore, including many in neighborhoods adjacent to the hospital with high levels of poverty."

"Hopkins is a not-for-profit institution that receives tens of millions annually in federal, state, and local tax breaks. In return for subsidies and tax breaks, Johns Hopkins is required to provide charity care or discounted care to low-income patients who lack insurance, or who lack enough insurance to cover their out-of-pocket expenses. "

"In 2018, medical debt sought by Hopkins in court accounted for less than one-tenth of 1 percent of Hopkins’ operating revenue."

"In 2017 alone Johns Hopkins received $164.4 million in tax exemptions and $25 million in rate support to provide charity care, $3.3 million of which was in excess of actual charity care provided."

"Hopkins’ excess charity care funds from 2017 alone could have forgiven nearly all of the $3.4 million sought in medical debt cases filed by Hopkins in Maryland courts from 2015 to 2018."

https://www.commondreams.org/newswire/2019/05/14/new-report-johns-hopkins-hounding-thousands-patients-medical-debt-lawsuits

Don't need the money, but screw the poor anyway. It's the principle of the thing, you see, the market must be seen to be supreme. Debts must be paid, especially if the poor are the debtors. The rich paying their debts ? You got to be kidding.

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SteveMDFP

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #330 on: May 26, 2019, 07:01:49 PM »
A thought-provoking article on economic inequality, and the only thing that has, apparently, ever improved it--disaster:

The Only Thing, Historically, That's Curbed Inequality: Catastrophe
Plagues, revolutions, massive wars, collapsed states—these are what reliably reduce economic disparities
https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2017/02/scheidel-great-leveler-inequality-violence/517164/

"Throughout history, only massive, violent shocks that upended the established order proved powerful enough to flatten disparities in income and wealth. They appeared in four different guises: mass-mobilization warfare, violent and transformative revolutions, state collapse, and catastrophic epidemics."


This perspective lends an interpretation for exactly why the entire world has been drifting towards populist/right-wing/neo-fascist governments all over the globe.  Modern civilization has done an excellent job suppressing most historical disasters of famine, plagues, revolution, and mass warfare--the usual means of reducing inequality.  With humanity deprived (so to speak) of these mechanisms for reversing inequality, the social-cultural-economic pressure cooker only builds more pressure over time, as the stressors of inequality build inexorably.

The implications are quite concerning.

Neven

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #331 on: May 26, 2019, 11:07:08 PM »
Quote
The implications are quite concerning.

Indeed, thanks for the article, Steve. Humanity has clearly been in a vicious cycle for thousands of years, and the stakes just keep getting higher. I still think the best, and perhaps only way, to reduce inequality is to put a cap on wealth, as the inequality invariably comes about by what happens at the top. Inequality is a symptom of a dynamic where concentrated wealth keeps growing and concentrating itself, regardless of who the owner is.

Just like nature always strives towards a forest, human society seems to always be striving towards wealth concentration. How do we start striving for a forest?
Il faut comparer, comparer, comparer, et cultiver notre jardin

b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #332 on: May 27, 2019, 09:21:38 AM »
How do we start striving for a forest?

Eat Tax the rich!

magnamentis

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #333 on: May 27, 2019, 04:46:06 PM »
How do we start striving for a forest?

Eat Tax the rich!

everyone who speaks about taxing the rich and capping the max wealth should always mention that only a global solution will do the job and global solutions for/against excessive wealth and significant taxing of the really rich have been far away at all times and the "trumpist" disruptions take things farther out of reach again. the moment each nation starts looking more than ever for their own interests, tax-wars will happen on a much higher scale again. one example we shall witness once a brexit has happened which i still think/hope that it won't.

b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #334 on: May 27, 2019, 05:25:00 PM »
everyone who speaks about taxing the rich and capping the max wealth should always mention that only a global solution will do the job

Taxing is a channelling instrument the state has, that has proven to work, is easy to implement and can be taken back easily when the outcome is not matching the goals. I disagree it's only useful when implemented globally. Income inequality is affecting my life directly. When my government implements it, everyone in my country is better off (yes, even the ones taxed higher). This means millions of lives are improved even without a global adoption.

Quote
"trumpist" disruptions take things farther out of reach again.

Sorry, Mag, but i disagree again. I think the orange Mussolini has widened the Overton window in favour of the left. Real progressive politics is being discussed in the US now and according to the polls, they are also popular. Would that be the case if centrist Hillary was president? Would have AOC won against Crowley? Would Bernie be a well-polled candidate for 2020?

magnamentis

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #335 on: May 27, 2019, 06:47:38 PM »
everyone who speaks about taxing the rich and capping the max wealth should always mention that only a global solution will do the job

Taxing is a channelling instrument the state has, that has proven to work, is easy to implement and can be taken back easily when the outcome is not matching the goals. I disagree it's only useful when implemented globally. Income inequality is affecting my life directly. When my government implements it, everyone in my country is better off (yes, even the ones taxed higher). This means millions of lives are improved even without a global adoption.

Quote
"trumpist" disruptions take things farther out of reach again.


Sorry, Mag, but i disagree again. I think the orange Mussolini has widened the Overton window in favour of the left. Real progressive politics is being discussed in the US now and according to the polls, they are also popular. Would that be the case if centrist Hillary was president? Would have AOC won against Crowley? Would Bernie be a well-polled candidate for 2020?


you apparently ignore the fact that big money is very mobile and where it's not can be easily diverted into low tax undertakings and investments.

as to the trump thing, the more nationalistic the system gets, everything else does not matter (when it comes to tax avoidance) the more countries will compete via taxation and conditions for enterprises and loop holes which makes tax avoidance a lot easier for the super rich (about which we are talking here)

only the middle class with some wealth but not enough to escape will pay the bill as it has been most of the time.

what is DISCUSSED is irrelevant as long as it does not come into effect, hene is implemented and even the degree of global approaches we already have/had are not reversed one by one by mr. trump and other right wing governments ignoring treaties or opting out at all.

Last but not least, i did not say anything about what i suggest or like or dislike, too long and too complicated, and then i thank you for the feedback either way because this hole thing is so
entangled and complicated that i can understand that depending on the point of view things can look quite differently, not worth to take things deeper as long as there is nothing we can do against the remaining 98% of world population of which 1% does the right thing only by accident ;)
« Last Edit: May 27, 2019, 07:49:30 PM by magnamentis »

b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #336 on: May 27, 2019, 07:09:52 PM »
I agree that you will have tax-avoidance in both nations, the one with high taxes and well-funded tax enforcement and the one with low taxes and lax tax-enforcement, but, you are arguing as if there was no qualitative nor quantitative difference between those. But there is.

I also agree that it would be easier if all nations would close loopholes together in an international effort, but there are well-established ways to do so as a nation-state too and they are working. The fact that those loopholes exist is not a function of a lag of globalism per se.

Anyway, i'm all for more cooperation between nation states. It would be great. But this is an even bigger subjunctive than fighting for it in your country.

magnamentis

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #337 on: May 27, 2019, 07:45:29 PM »
I agree that you will have tax-avoidance in both nations, the one with high taxes and well-funded tax enforcement and the one with low taxes and lax tax-enforcement, but, you are arguing as if there was no qualitative nor quantitative difference between those. But there is.

I also agree that it would be easier if all nations would close loopholes together in an international effort, but there are well-established ways to do so as a nation-state too and they are working. The fact that those loopholes exist is not a function of a lag of globalism per se.

Anyway, i'm all for more cooperation between nation states. It would be great. But this is an even bigger subjunctive than fighting for it in your country.

as i said, it depends on where you stand as a person and from which angle you look at things.

if you talk about charging high tax to wealthy people, let's say people with a business who earn more than 200'000 a year (example) and own assets of more than 10 million but less than 100 million, you are right.

but then those are the people who pay most of the taxes aready and drive the economy (not saying i like everything about it but after all social costs have to be produced first)

But i'm talking about he real money, let's say those with 100M to 1B and then those wealthier than 1B and another group with more than 1B per family member (1st degree)

means super reach and filthy rich etc.

and those guys who really should pay taxes in billions, you won't get and those who you get their money will suffer on the re-investment side and carry as much as they can abroad and/or to inland tax avoidance schemes, like the germans have them, the dutch have them etc. etc.

so at the end you cripple the drivers of the economy who work hard 60 years almost 16/7 to finally have 10million euro to enjoy their retirement and all those with more than that and with more they ever need for 10 generations to come and those who buy polititions and those who live from workers life energy (interests and dividends) you won't hurt much.

and this is NOT what i call (it works)

again. it depends, i respect if that sound good enough for you or anyone while i'm for a real but generous hard cap on wealth in any possible form per capita of 1st degree family members.

say husband+ wife+ 2 children = 4 billion max. (we can also divide those numbers by 10, is just an example, i don't claim to know the perfect numbers) anything above goes to the work force who create that money with their labour, education, infrastructure and the likes. you see it's starts to get long winded without even having a chance to make a proper point. you can probably negotiated decades and fill libraries on this topic and until now all past efforts did not prevail because it's not that easy and there is no black and white solution.

on additional point where to start would be to make our leaders of any kind responsible and really send them to jail if they are corrupt etc. without proper consequences and without a high quota of being held responsible (high chance to escape) nothing CAN ever change.

then the monetary system (interest on interest) is flawed on it's day of implementation (forced growth) and with forced growth we are back on topic (climate change, exploitation of resources etc)

in short:

no chance to prosper and benefit from success and/or skills etc does not work ( i.e. communism)
give people room and a chance to benefit from what they do good/better.

no limit to wealth (i.e. neo-liberalism, capitalism) does not work. we need a cap and distribute the rest to those without whom that kind of wealth cannot be generated.

we need the middle way while each of the above two sides defend their current benefits and states with all means they have available which is why there is not significant movement fast enough to solve humanities problems fast enough to avoid collapses like wars, pandemic events and now climate desaster)
« Last Edit: May 27, 2019, 08:02:26 PM by magnamentis »

b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #338 on: May 27, 2019, 08:15:08 PM »
but then those are the people who pay most of the taxes aready and drive the economy

No! Concentrated wealth is not driving the economy. By no means. Not only is it depriving wealth from the whole economy, it leads to what you and i don't like: Tax-avoidance.

The re-investment argument is a myth. If a company stops re-investing, it will have a disadvantage. Sooner or later another company will take its place. End of story. These are the things the market is good at solving.

We can argue about the economic sides of the topic all day and we wouldn't agree on much. We are just too far away from each other here. I think i can offer an argument for a wealth gap we can agree on though. It's the political one: Concentrated wealth is also concentrated power and therefore inherently undemocratic! Would you give me this one?

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #339 on: May 27, 2019, 08:47:43 PM »


The re-investment argument is a myth. If a company stops re-investing, it will have a disadvantage. Sooner or later another company will take its place. End of story. These are the things the market is good at solving.
 

The reinvestment argument is a myth, but I'd argue the point from a different direction.  Income goes either to consumption or to investment.  This is true for individuals, for communities, or for entire nations.  Or the world as a whole.

There is likely some optimum balance of consumption vs. investment for global money.  In the post-WW-II era, up until about 1980 we had a much higher percent of income going to consumption.  We had rising standards of living.  We had less money moving around in investments, so interest rates rose until that point.

As wealth inequality increased around the globe after 1980, we saw falling interest rates, and rising prices of stocks, bonds, real estate, gold, and other investment vehicles.  Those with wealth to invest, getting more and more wealth, have been out-bidding each other for these investment vehicles.

We now have a massive surplus of money for investment.  This surplus has resulted in very low bond yields (interest rates that are even negative, still, in some parts of the EU).  Stock prices are up, and thus dividend yields are very low.  Gold is far, far higher than in 1980.  Real estate (and thus rent) is very expensive.

Since investment dollars move about the economy much slower than consumption dollars, we have a very low "velocity of money" and thus persistently low inflation, despite dramatic efforts to increase the money supply.  Massive US budget deficits have not resulted in rising inflation or rising interest rates, despite what textbooks might predict.  These deficits don't soak up enough excess investment dollars to change the picture. 

The global economy is unbalanced, awash with excess money for investment. This is a direct effect of wealth inequality, which is steadily worsening. The only way to restore a more historically normal balance is to soak up those excess investment monies, by taxation or other means.


b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #340 on: May 27, 2019, 09:10:32 PM »
Yes, the velocity of money is decreasing with wealth concentration. That's what i meant with 'depriving wealth from the whole economy'. Should have been more precise there.

magnamentis

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #341 on: May 27, 2019, 09:22:15 PM »
but then those are the people who pay most of the taxes aready and drive the economy

No! Concentrated wealth is not driving the economy. By no means. Not only is it depriving wealth from the whole economy, it leads to what you and i don't like: Tax-avoidance.

The re-investment argument is a myth. If a company stops re-investing, it will have a disadvantage. Sooner or later another company will take its place. End of story. These are the things the market is good at solving.

We can argue about the economic sides of the topic all day and we wouldn't agree on much. We are just too far away from each other here. I think i can offer an argument for a wealth gap we can agree on though. It's the political one: Concentrated wealth is also concentrated power and therefore inherently undemocratic! Would you give me this one?

please read exactly what i write before replying, else it's useless.

10-100 million while part of it in an enterprise is NOT concentrated wealth, those are people who often run a family business over generations and EARNED some wealth.

concentrated business for me starts at around 100 million made in short time earliest and if 90 of the 100 millin are assets that represent a useful business like a brewery or a tooling company or engeneering company the limit would be higher.

i told you and please digest it once and for all:

it depends on how you see things. if you see a man with a tooling factory who owns 50 million in total as concentrated wealth, then we can stop here because i don't see it that way.

concentrated wealth takes WAY MORE MONEY in one hand than that.

if you can think close along my lines as far as limits and amounts are concerned there is nothing to discuss because then we agree.

as you can see and this is why i stop here, even though we have a similar way of thinking and similar solutions in mind and similar goals, we discuss about a very detail and petty terms.

i dislike that because this is why the good people never can gather forces and use it combined, they fragment their energy into tiny ego-centric bits and i won't take part in it.

i know what you mean, i basically agree and for the rest it does not matter. i look at the big picture and to get there we first have to agree on the principals and methodology and only then lose ourselves over whether the limit is 10 millions or 100 millions or more or less.

if you think you can take everyone who owns 10 millions and more most of the surplus away then remember the appearance of all the communist ruled countries. no development, no maintenance, no progress etc.

consider the consequence of each amount you're testing and you shall see that to keep motivation that is needed for prospering and making progress, a certain level of benefit is needed. else most humans become dull and phlegmatic and power seeking shall overcome money making and that's even worse.

each step we consider to make things better we have to consider the consequences and all dogmatic and extreme approaches will make things only worse and cause disasters and ditoriation.

sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #342 on: June 03, 2019, 05:59:47 AM »
Detailed analysis at zipcode level for the USA from St. Louis Fed of economic recovery or lack thereof from 2010-2018

https://www.stlouisfed.org/publications/regional-economist/first-quarter-2019/unequal-recovery-measuring-financial-distress

sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #343 on: June 12, 2019, 01:26:36 AM »
Drown the poor. They don't deserve dry land to live on.

Or, Bangladesh comes to the USA.

"When rivers flood now in the United States, the first towns to get hit are the unprotected ones right by the river. The last to go, if they flood at all, are the privileged few behind strong levees."

"To prioritize its resources, the Corps uses cost-benefit calculations ... the calculations favor highly valued property over less affluent communities. "

No shit. Colour me unsurprised.

"The process is “always driven by property values ..." "

https://www.propublica.org/article/levee-valley-park-flood-thy-neighbor-who-stays-dry-and-who-decides

sidd

johnm33

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #344 on: June 12, 2019, 09:57:20 AM »
You'll know it's really bad when the rich start using the clay from ancient flood defences to make bricks for their houses on high ground.

vox_mundi

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #345 on: June 14, 2019, 08:29:03 PM »
Climate Change Poses Major Risks to Financial Markets, Regulator Warns
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/11/climate/climate-financial-market-risk.html

WASHINGTON — A top financial regulator is opening a public effort to highlight the risk that climate change poses to the nation’s financial markets, setting up a clash with a president who has mocked global warming and whose administration has sought to suppress climate science.

Rostin Behnam, who sits on the federal government’s five-member Commodity Futures Trading Commission, a powerful agency overseeing major financial markets including grain futures, oil trading and complex derivatives, said in an interview on Monday that the financial risks from climate change were comparable to those posed by the mortgage meltdown that triggered the 2008 financial crisis.

“If climate change causes more volatile frequent and extreme weather events, you’re going to have a scenario where these large providers of financial products — mortgages, home insurance, pensions — cannot shift risk away from their portfolios,” he said. “It’s abundantly clear that climate change poses financial risk to the stability of the financial system.”

... On Wednesday, Mr. Behnam plans to detail the formation of a panel of experts at the trading commission assigned to produce a report on how global warming could affect the financial sector, potentially impacting food costs, insurance markets, the mortgage industry and other economic pillars.

Because the report, expected late this year or early next, would be a product of the federal government, it would most likely put Mr. Behnam in direct conflict with the policies of the Trump administration. The report, which Mr. Behnam said he expected would focus in particular on potential harm to the nation’s agriculture sector, is likely to emerge at a moment when Mr. Trump will be making the case to farm states, which have already been hurt by his crop tariffs, to re-elect him in 2020.

... “We understand that climate change causes a big systemic risk,” said Stefano Giglio, a professor of finance at Yale University who has published studies with the National Bureau of Economic Research on the financial consequences of warming. “But right now, we don’t have enough information, and we don’t have the right financial products to insure this risk. The CFTC can help give that information and help lay out a global marker for what we need to do.”
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

Insensible before the wave so soon released by callous fate. Affected most, they understand the least, and understanding, when it comes, invariably arrives too late

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #346 on: June 16, 2019, 06:21:42 AM »
Milk the poor. Quite vampiric.

"Roughly 70 to 80 percent of global plasma supply is provided by paid donors from the United States, which, unlike the United Kingdom and other developed nations, does not ban the practice of paying donors for their blood. The United States also has fewer restrictions on how often someone can donate plasma, with donors permitted to undergo the process twice a week, every week, all year long."

"plasma donation companies are “surgically placing” donation centers in destitute neighborhoods."

"Significant numbers of donors...would not be able to afford the lifesaving therapies created by their own plasma contributions."

" as little as $30 to $50 for a donation that can be sold for $300 on the wholesale market"

" I’m well aware that I’m getting ripped off for this, but money is money. "

" the simple fact that they’re taking your immune system"

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/05/28/plas-m28.html

sidd

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #347 on: June 16, 2019, 03:32:55 PM »

10-100 million while part of it in an enterprise is NOT concentrated wealth, those are people who often run a family business over generations and EARNED some wealth.


Yes, generational wealth. They definitely earned it. Not the black slaves who built their factories and picked their cotton. Not the indigenous people who were raped, enslaved, and stolen of their resources and land.  Not the Bangladesh worker who's forced into factory.  Not the Iraqi that ate white phosphorous so we could steal their oil. Not the Honduran who drinks from poisoned wells caused by neocolonialist mining projects.

There's no such thing as honest earned wealth in an inherently exploitative economic system. Even for the many members of this board who own investment/rent-seeking properties.  They use their excess capital to purchase additional properties, driving up rent and housing costs, further immiserating the people who can not afford to participate in the system.

b_lumenkraft

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #348 on: June 16, 2019, 06:06:42 PM »
Very well said Zizek. It's said rarely enough!

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Re: Economic Inequality
« Reply #349 on: June 16, 2019, 06:22:54 PM »
Milk the poor. Quite vampiric.

"Roughly 70 to 80 percent of global plasma supply is provided by paid donors from the United States, ... with donors permitted to undergo the process twice a week, every week, all year long."

" as little as $30 to $50 for a donation that can be sold for $300 on the wholesale market"

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/05/28/plas-m28.html

sidd


Any classically trained economist would approve of this efficient method of allocating scarce resources.