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Here is the present "Motor City" in pics!

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    Posted: 07 Apr 2011 at 05:36
Indeed Graham, I should know better. It just seems I have some anger problems as well as some ego problems.

I shall try to act more adult.

Regards,
Ron
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2011 at 21:03
Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

And, my dear Graham, I surely hope you will someday rejoin the "real world" also?
And so you show yourself to be ignorant and totally wrong but of course you immediately forget all the smears and accusations of lying or insanity that you were guilty of.
 
Admit you were wrong, and one might have a little respect for you. And since you've shown you have no idea whatsoever of economic reality (they're really are more than one currency in the world, and they don't all march in lockstep with regard to changing values) you might do well to stay away from such themes, given that you just showuip your own ignorance all the time.
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Perhaps some other oldtimers, unlike you and the "Good Doctor", will have something to say.

But, perhaps they will be "doubleteamed", as you both have alternatively done me, be scared to post!

It seems, that by your status upon this list, you two also seem to tend to support one another.
Possibly because we both know what we are talking about if we make assertions..
 
If you'd been around long enough, you'd know that drgonzaga and I have certainly had our differences, notably over the 'failure' of the Spanish Armada and a certain American dance form/linguistic usage.
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So, it seems the only alternative to your view of the world, or your views of the world of the past, (Even if it is only 50 or so years) will be allowed to be presented with some type of respect. 
You write like a spoilt brat. You're old enough to know better.


Edited by gcle2003 - 06 Apr 2011 at 21:06
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2011 at 16:09
Laugh!

Good Doctor, just how could you retreive such good information to add to my original post?

Thanks for your original remarks!

Ron
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2011 at 14:08
Save the gas, opuslola, you might need it to get to Pascagoula. Now why don't you be a good boy and go back to Cyrus and play your games there. You have definitely worn out any welcome here...you have obviously forgotten that nothing ever disappears from the ethers of the WWW.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2011 at 13:02
The "Good Doctor" wrote above:

"Anyway, apparently some do not wish to discuss Detroit but find both my persona and that of Gcle far more interesting; hence, what can one say over these repeated childish proclamations of persecution? Now there is a level of slapstick humour here; to be portrayed as braces to another's trousers does bring a chortle to this throat with but one conclusion possible, someone is definitely sore down the bum!"

And, the above is amongst the best words of the "Good Doctor" that could be translated from his post. The last words of the above are far beyond the understanding of moder men or women!

So, I shall not change one bit of my previous posts!

Ron (no regards to you doctor, but perhaps I will reserve some for Graham?)



Edited by opuslola - 06 Apr 2011 at 13:04
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2011 at 09:33
Well, as matters steadily decline from the boring to the boorish, the Detroit skyline with its Renaissance Center has faded in the distance. How the nature of the Social Security program or the decline of the purchasing power of the dollar can be associated with the toil and trouble of the Motor City is more than a bit bizarre...could one say it is but the current phase of Voodoo Economics?
 
Anyway, apparently some do not wish to discuss Detroit but find both my persona and that of Gcle far more interesting; hence, what can one say over these repeated childish proclamations of persecution? Now there is a level of slapstick humour here; to be portrayed as braces to another's trousers does bring a chortle to this throat with but one conclusion possible, someone is definitely sore down the bum!
 
Perhaps a riposte in the style of "Patrick Dennis" is in order...but somehow I believe that even East Coast jollity as grasped by a Chicagoan would hardly be appreciated much less understood.
 
By the way Edward Everett Tanner III did have two egos--Patrick Dennis and Virginia Rowans.


Edited by drgonzaga - 06 Apr 2011 at 09:41
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Apr 2011 at 09:05
And, my dear Graham, I surely hope you will someday rejoin the "real world" also?

Perhaps some other oldtimers, unlike you and the "Good Doctor", will have something to say.

But, perhaps they will be "doubleteamed", as you both have alternatively done me, be scared to post!

It seems, that by your status upon this list, you two also seem to tend to support one another.

So, it seems the only alternative to your view of the world, or your views of the world of the past, (Even if it is only 50 or so years) will be allowed to be presented with some type of respect.

Lowering regards for both of you ensue.

Ron
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Apr 2011 at 22:32
Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

Thanks Panther, it is good to sometimes have a favorable post directed towwards me, rather than the double team of the detractors.

If Graham is really being truthful to us, concerning his pension, that he stated that "Two months" of his present day pension would have paid for his "five bedroom home in his present place of residence in 1963, but wait a moment, here are his exact words;
(a) I did not say 'in my present place of residence' at all. In 1963 I was living in Southampton and the price was in sterling: today I live in Luxembourg and my pensions are mostly in euros and the rest sterling. I would accept that part of the gain results from my moving to Luxembourg, and I would not have been doing so well had I stayed in Britain. And I have no idea what the situation was in the US in 1963, which is totally irrelevant to my point.
(b) My house was 60 years old at the time, and needed a little modernisation. However it was in a street where residents were doctors and lawyers and the like. It cost me £3,000 and my present State pensions come to £1,500 a month approximately (depending somewhat on the euro/sterling exchange rate.
 
If you can find something you now something about then stick to it. Otherwise you are spouting nonsense, because you are taking no account at all of currency differences, and for some reason yattering on about dollar prices. 
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"That still happens. Everywhere. I currently have already recouped everything I've paid into the UK and Luxembourg systems. I could never have saved anything like the amount I'd need to buy an annuity for my total pensions. Two months' pension would have paid for outright the five bedrooom house I bought on mortage in 1963. One month's pension is more than 25 times what I earned in total in a month to start on my first job in 1956 (as a feature writer on a million-and-a-half readership Fleet Street magazine.

There 's no way any scheme based on savings and reinvestment could have given that kind of return."

And then he does not call the current SS System in the USA,as a "Ponzi" scheme, totally drived me crazy. For a matter of fact, my parents bought a new home in about 1959, consisting of only three small bedrooms, and maybe 1,200 sq. feet, for $13,500 and Graham wants us to believe that his "Two month pension" today would have paid totally for the same home, he is either rather lucky, or he fell fullly down the rabbit hole. What I mean is that my parents paid $13,500 for a home in 1959, and taking Graham's post as truth, then we must consider that a five bedroom home, even in a poor nation like Luxembourg,
I don't know where you get 'poor' from. Luxembourg is one of the richest countries per capita in the world.
 
Moreover your parents $13,500 in 1959 would have been about £4,800 compared with the £3,000 I paid in Southampton four years later (and long before the big property booms started). So that means my present State pensions would pay for your parents house in about three months rather than two. Which doesn't alter my point much, because no private institution would guarantee that rate of return either.
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 must have cost at least as much in 1963, and thus, Graham must now receive as a "gift from the currently taxed" a check for at least $6,500 per month for his words to be creditible. That is $6,500 X 2, equals $13,000!

Now perhaps Graham purchased a five bedroom hovel, deep into an almost impentreable valley, full of theives, and other "n'er do wells", or Gypsies, etc., that was not really worth too much?

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=n'er%20do%20wells

But, I really doubt, that in the case of any property within the boundaries of his nation, that such properties actually existed, even in 1963. (A stupid sentence but I will leave it alone.)

But, even if Graham's five bedroom home only cost him $10,000 in 1963, he would now be making from his version of SS, $5,000 per month!

But, perhaps Graham will explain it?
I just did. It cost me £3,000 and I get £1,500 a month. If I had sent my whole working life in Luxembourg I would be getting at least double that.
 
Now due to the vagaries of currenciy exchanges, £3,000 in 1963 was worth $8,400 and £1,500 now is only worth about $2,400 so in terms of current dollars the ratio would only be about 3.5 instead of 2.0 but I was working in sterling, not in dollars - why would you think I was using dollars?
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And when I mentioned the use of the "Printing Press" to manufacture "coin of the realm", he said "So?"

"So" means invariably to rampant inflation, at least that is my impression. But perhaps Graham or the "Good Doctor" will explain that little thing away also?
Doesn't need explaining (at least the answer doesn't, the question itself shows something of a confused mind).
Of course increasing the money supply is in some instances - probably most - inflationary: every country that I know of that has inflation control targets, sets them as greater than zero - usually 2.3%. But that is not bnecessarily rampant, and anyway in some situations, as for instance where people are oversaving, or the banks are callingin loans, government action in increasing the money supply only counteracts the deflationary effect.
 
And deflation is a far worse danger than inflation. 
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I expect a quick and evasive reply.
 
You get a quick one but not an evasive one. Do try and get in touch with the real world one day.


Edited by gcle2003 - 05 Apr 2011 at 22:37
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Apr 2011 at 12:55
Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

And then he does not call the current SS System in the USA,as a "Ponzi" scheme, totally drived me crazy. For a matter of fact, my parents bought a new home in about 1959, consisting of only three small bedrooms, and maybe 1,200 sq. feet, for $13,500 and Graham wants us to believe that his "Two month pension" today would have paid totally for the same home, he is either rather lucky, or he fell fullly down the rabbit hole. What I mean is that my parents paid $13,500 for a home in 1959, and taking Graham's post as truth, then we must consider that a five bedroom home, even in a poor nation like Luxembourg, must have cost at least as much in 1963, and thus, Graham must now receive as a "gift from the currently taxed" a check for at least $6,500 per month for his words to be creditible. That is $6,500 X 2, equals $13,000!

Now perhaps Graham purchased a five bedroom hovel, deep into an almost impentreable valley, full of theives, and other "n'er do wells", or Gypsies, etc., that was not really worth too much?
I think you might find that housing prices, pension payments, and inflation rates vary significantly between countries. I also wonder what you mean by "poor nation of Luxemburg", but I assume you're being sarcastic.
My grandmother bought her house for 3000 pounds (AU$6000) in 1963. $6000 is two months of the average salary in Aus, and I am sure that some people get that amount in pension/superannuation so by niether your nor my calcs do Grahams look unreasonable.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Apr 2011 at 09:04
It seems Doctor, that you and I have lived in totally differing nations. And, that we saw totally differing outcomes, or since you seem so fond of saying, you seem to be my total "obverse" side.

How you could live so long and be so wrong, is totally beyond me.

But, I deferr to your age and wisdom.

Regards,

Ron

Actually Dr., after reading literally hundreds of your postitings, it really seems that we have much more in common than I let on above.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Apr 2011 at 08:58
You are wearing your welcome "thin", Opuslola, with your insistence on aspersions against others as an integral part of your postings. You can not argue with the historical fact that the first "recipient" of a Social Security check did receive more in payments than any amount she paid as "contribution". Ida May Fuller of Vermont is no secret and for a total contribution of $24.75 paid between 1934 and 1939, she received $22,888.92 from 1940 to 1975. Further, the constant blather against the SSA as a "Ponzi Scheme" is little other than ridiculous hyperbole. Likewise, inflation as an economic descriptive is not the product of a government simply printing excess notes [besides such has nothing to do with how the Federal Reserve actually operates]. I certainly can assert that in the past five years I have received in total payments from the SSA far more than I contributed and certainly more than the cost of my first "home", which was $42,000 US1965$.
 
If there is a myth rolling around, it is that personal savings will produce anyone an income against the future. Now that one is balderdash since I am still the recipient on an ancestral mortemain trust (call it an annuity) that while glowing as late as the 1960s, its present annual return of $6,000 while comfortable in 1960 places one significantly below the poverty-level today. Your claims are little more than the fodder for the selling of penny stocks as a hedge for future prosperity. There are no "Magic Numbers" and my great grandmother always blessed the day her husband believed none of it and kept his coin in the strongbox and not in the local bank, which went South rather quickly in 1927!


Edited by drgonzaga - 05 Apr 2011 at 09:11
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Apr 2011 at 07:45
Thanks Panther, it is good to sometimes have a favorable post directed towwards me, rather than the double team of the detractors.

If Graham is really being truthful to us, concerning his pension, that he stated that "Two months" of his present day pension would have paid for his "five bedroom home in his present place of residence in 1963, but wait a moment, here are his exact words;

"That still happens. Everywhere. I currently have already recouped everything I've paid into the UK and Luxembourg systems. I could never have saved anything like the amount I'd need to buy an annuity for my total pensions. Two months' pension would have paid for outright the five bedrooom house I bought on mortage in 1963. One month's pension is more than 25 times what I earned in total in a month to start on my first job in 1956 (as a feature writer on a million-and-a-half readership Fleet Street magazine.

There 's no way any scheme based on savings and reinvestment could have given that kind of return."

And then he does not call the current SS System in the USA,as a "Ponzi" scheme, totally drived me crazy. For a matter of fact, my parents bought a new home in about 1959, consisting of only three small bedrooms, and maybe 1,200 sq. feet, for $13,500 and Graham wants us to believe that his "Two month pension" today would have paid totally for the same home, he is either rather lucky, or he fell fullly down the rabbit hole. What I mean is that my parents paid $13,500 for a home in 1959, and taking Graham's post as truth, then we must consider that a five bedroom home, even in a poor nation like Luxembourg, must have cost at least as much in 1963, and thus, Graham must now receive as a "gift from the currently taxed" a check for at least $6,500 per month for his words to be creditible. That is $6,500 X 2, equals $13,000!

Now perhaps Graham purchased a five bedroom hovel, deep into an almost impentreable valley, full of theives, and other "n'er do wells", or Gypsies, etc., that was not really worth too much?

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=n'er%20do%20wells

But, I really doubt, that in the case of any property within the boundaries of his nation, that such properties actually existed, even in 1963. (A stupid sentence but I will leave it alone.)

But, even if Graham's five bedroom home only cost him $10,000 in 1963, he would now be making from his version of SS, $5,000 per month!

But, perhaps Graham will explain it?

And when I mentioned the use of the "Printing Press" to manufacture "coin of the realm", he said "So?"

"So" means invariably to rampant inflation, at least that is my impression. But perhaps Graham or the "Good Doctor" will explain that little thing away also?

I expect a quick and evasive reply.

Regards,
Ron
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Apr 2011 at 06:11
While depressing to look at the photos, i do appreciate your sharing them.

Was just trying to throw a tiny amount of weak levity, at the expense of Charlie Sheen (Sorry Joe), into an otherwise very bleak subject.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Apr 2011 at 13:30
Just what else could I have presented?

Ron
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Yeesh... how depressing.

In more motor city news, Detroit suffers another major disaster

http:///insidetv.ew.com/2011/04/02/charlie-sheen-tour-review/
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Originally posted by drgonzaga drgonzaga wrote:

The political reality in the United States may be said to project a confederacy of dunces [pace "Ignatius"] when it comes to issues such as Social Security. Little has changed since the program was identified as the "the third rail in American politics" and if rabid Tea Partiers begin to release gas against the pension system within the yakkity-yak about 'taxes" they will be consumed by the gray panthers in the electorate. If one is careful in reading with respect to the agiprop over taxes and social programs the rhetoric is directed against phantom menaces such as "illegals" receiving assitance through programs under the SSA umbrella or the claims of massive fraud within the disability classification--the persistent utterances dating back to the 1980s and reiterated in the 1990s. I doubt anyone wants to go back to replay the 1933-1934 debate over SS--which produced such euphemisms as "contributions" to the fund rather than the utterance of the word TAX!--but if there does exist one irrevocable "Contract with America" produced by political yammer it is the Social Security Program with all of its warts. The present crisis however has nothing to do with "transfer payments" to the individual through taxes, but transfer payments to the states made possible through federal tax rates that are much lower today than they were 40, 30 and even 20 years ago when most of these programs were enacted. That was the reality back in 1992 and little has changed since then. The bottom line within the American jurisdictional division is a simple one: if federal tax rates are dropped then state tax rates must increase so as to acommodate what has become customary among the people. Let's look for the politicians who refuse to wake up and smell the coffee on that reality's morning!


Federal politicians will do nothing to endanger their chances for re-election.  Voting for tax increases is a death sentence. 

The personal economy of that political aristocracy is not affected by financing the entitlements of the proletarians who are becoming increasingly ignored.  The entitlements of the political aristocracy are off limits - voted so by themselves.

EDIT:  Good God!  I am starting to sound like a revolutionary.  Unfortunately, in the past couple of decades, the Republic has been ceded to corporate (or at least corporative) special interests who have become expert at purchasing influence; manipulating media through its revenue streams, and especially successful at demonstrating to legislators that their real constituency is those corporative special interests rather than the electorate.

I don't know any longer if this can be fixed.

I believe Franklin said something like "When the people realize they can vote themselves money, there will be an end of the Republic." 

If the purpose of the Republic is solely to get at the treasury by special interests, it may already be too late.




Edited by pikeshot1600 - 02 Apr 2011 at 05:21
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Apr 2011 at 01:02
The political reality in the United States may be said to project a confederacy of dunces [pace "Ignatius"] when it comes to issues such as Social Security. Little has changed since the program was identified as the "the third rail in American politics" and if rabid Tea Partiers begin to release gas against the pension system within the yakkity-yak about 'taxes" they will be consumed by the gray panthers in the electorate. If one is careful in reading with respect to the agiprop over taxes and social programs the rhetoric is directed against phantom menaces such as "illegals" receiving assitance through programs under the SSA umbrella or the claims of massive fraud within the disability classification--the persistent utterances dating back to the 1980s and reiterated in the 1990s. I doubt anyone wants to go back to replay the 1933-1934 debate over SS--which produced such euphemisms as "contributions" to the fund rather than the utterance of the word TAX!--but if there does exist one irrevocable "Contract with America" produced by political yammer it is the Social Security Program with all of its warts. The present crisis however has nothing to do with "transfer payments" to the individual through taxes, but transfer payments to the states made possible through federal tax rates that are much lower today than they were 40, 30 and even 20 years ago when most of these programs were enacted. That was the reality back in 1992 and little has changed since then. The bottom line within the American jurisdictional division is a simple one: if federal tax rates are dropped then state tax rates must increase so as to acommodate what has become customary among the people. Let's look for the politicians who refuse to wake up and smell the coffee on that reality's morning!

Edited by drgonzaga - 02 Apr 2011 at 01:05
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 23:57
Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

Graham, perhaps you do not know or failed to realize that I am the beginning of the WWII "baby boon." Siince SS allows one a partial payment at age 62 (rather than age 65), then some of us, now my age (64),have already applied for and have received SS benefits. This drain will only continue for the next few years.
So?
Quote
Please see this site;

http://www.ssa.gov/history/ratios.html As well as this one for some ideas;

http://www.sabrient.com/blog/?p=3554&cpage=1
There's a reason Krugman has a Nobel prize and your quotee doesn't.
 
I assume most people will note that on those figures the ratio of contributors to beneficiaries is today virtually identical to what it was forty years ago, even though you appear to have missed the point.
Quote

It just seems that taxation is or will if one accepts your theory, become really "repressive" (regressive) at one time or another.
('Regressive' means something else entirely.) If society doesn't want to pay people retirement benefits nothing forces it too: there's nothing in 'my' theory[1] to make it. IF it wants to pay them the only way to do it is from current taxation (or of course on a temporary basis through borrowing). That taxation can be regressive or progressive, and it can be imposed on anything - doesn't have to be payroll taxes. But the only source for the money has ultimately to be taxation. 
[1] Actually the theory is pretty universally accepted by governmental actuaries.
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The only way the current scheme can work is via the printing press!
The prinnting press is inescapable at least in a democratic society, because pretty well everyone always wants more money, whether in dividends, wages, bonuses, prices, profits - whatever. It's perhaps the most important reason of all those that say long-term future payments in nominal or real terms cannot be guaranteed.
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Oh,by the way, I don't understand the copy and past function that you and others use. Perhaps this site, and others, need a primer for those illiterate like me?

The easy way is to look at the text you get when yout hit the 'quote' button, and study the way the QUOTE and  /QUOTE tags in square brackets work. You can experiment and use the 'preview post' button to see what you are getting.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 21:49
Graham, perhaps you do not know or failed to realize that I am the beginning of the WWII "baby boon." Siince SS allows one a partial payment at age 62 (rather than age 65), then some of us, now my age (64),have already applied for and have received SS benefits. This drain will only continue for the next few years.

Please see this site;

http://www.ssa.gov/history/ratios.html As well as this one for some ideas;

http://www.sabrient.com/blog/?p=3554&cpage=1

It just seems that taxation is or will if one accepts your theory, become really "repressive" (regressive) at one time or another.

The only way the current scheme can work is via the printing press!

Regards,
Ron

Oh,by the way, I don't understand the copy and past function that you and others use. Perhaps this site, and others, need a primer for those illiterate like me?



Edited by opuslola - 01 Apr 2011 at 21:50
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 21:29
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

However I think that last sentence should be 'Unemployment should not be so much a problem as lack of income and boredom'. I do think it is seen as a problem thanks to the prevailing work ethic.

I think the work ethic culture only applies in English-speaking and Northern European countries. I generally think it is a good thing, and I agree with that ethic that work has personal benefits regardless of economic benefits (however, convincing women that they don't all need to have a career is perhaps an improvement*). The trick - and only workable solution really - is to employ people to do tasks that don't strictly need to be done but are accepted as good expenditure by the community at large - ie, sending a man to the moon.

 *So is convincing tradesmen (at least here) that doing a good job first time is important

I don't disagree with that. Do you know Herzberg's work on the 'hygiene' factors and the 'motivational' factors that affect attitudes to work? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Herzberg
 
I think there is a case for suggesting that the 'Puritan work ethic' stresses the hygiene factors at work and largely ignores the motivational factors. So I'd advocate a 'work ethic' that concentrates on the motivational factors - self-expression, work satisfaction and so on.
 
In other words I'm not against work ethics in general, merely against the Puritan one that if you don't work you don't get paid.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 21:21
Opuslola I really wish you would learn how to distinguish who said what. The was this read you couldn't tell who said what. I'll try and fix it, ut i> shouldn't have to.
Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

Good God, what a wealth of premises. It almost makes one want to puke. The solution is to raise taxes? If so then please see this; http://www.taxfoundation.org/publications/show/151.html

Don't see your point. When the US was rich and economically dominant itb had very high tax rates. Since tax rates started going down the US has got progressively weaker and weaker, at least relatively. Everybody's aware of that: it's the point we are making.

But Graham, if I may call you by your given name, Do you really assert that it was Federal Spending that financed a "Rich America?" I would consider that view as overly simplistic.
It may be simple but it is accurate. 'Rich America' was based on federal (and State) spending in the '30s, '40s, '50s and '60s, especially of course in ww2. Of course it was also based on the highly protectionist policies and the safety of the US from foreign attack that it's then-abundant natural resources and geographical position made possible. 
Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:


Quote And while we are at it, why not look at the original Social Security rates? And here is one of the biggest lies of all times, it is called "The Social Security Trust Fund!"
Agreed. It's a sham to deceive those who insanely believe that everyone can guarantee themselved a safe old age by saving money. All state pension schemes are paid for out od contemporary taxation: that's the only way a guarantee is even possible (and  of course even then there's no 100% guarantee in this life). 


In reality, the origin of the SS system, was to provide a small pension as a supplement to one's own savings, etc., and not an end of all personal responsibility.
Beside the point. The point is that personal saving CANNOT be guaranteed to be worrth anyhing by the time peoplle retire. It will only work sometimes by happenstance, and not because of any merit on the part of the saver. It's even dumber to think it will work because excessive saving can kill an economy stone dead. 
Quote
Second, it was based upon fake or false mortality rates, that is it was thought that most benefits would not ever have to be paid, since most of them were expected to have died by the time they turned age 65. Which is, unfortunately, the case with Male African Americans today. But with the rise of longer lived people the scheme was never adjusted, thus the plan to move the age upwards today, is mostly too little and too late. Perhaps age 75 would be a good start?
Follow your idea and you really would be producing a Ponzi scheme - promise people that they'll get something, and then tell them they can't have it. Barring some preternatural massive accident or plague, mortality rates ALWAYS underestimate length of life. Life assurance companies rely on that effect to make mones. But it is another reason why you can't rely on savings for help in old age.
Quote
Quote
Quote But, the sad fact is, that our congress and our presidents,never made sure that this so called "Trust Fund" was really in some type of "Trust", that is unless you really trust your politicians? NO, instead, our sacred band of brothers, who have managed this nation since 1913, have but placed "IOU's into the Trust Fund" so they could spend this money for the benefit of their collegues and even some times for their voters. The really sad fact is, that Social Security was originated and kept as a gigantic "Ponzie Scheme", from its inception.

It's not a Ponzi scheme. It only pretends to be a kind of Ponzi scheme to people who don't understand reality. The reality is that social security takes money from people in taxes and gives it to other people in benefits. Most countries don't bother pretending anything else, but the US has to because people don't have sufficient sense of community or responsibility for the elderly. (Or sick, or other other welfare benefits.) Moreover the beneficiaries like to kid themselves they earned what they are getting back.

Well, that is exactly correct if you are suggesting that in the early years of the system (up until the 1980's, I believe), the amount withheld from one's pay, was so miniscule, that those reaching age 65 recovered all of their investment within a year or two.
That still happens. Everywhere. I currently have already recouped everything I've paid into the UK and Luxembourg systems. I could never have saved anything like the amount I'd need to buy an annuity for my total pensions. Two months' pension would have paid for outright the five bedrooom house I bought on mortage in 1963. One month's pension is more than 25 times what I earned in total in a month to start on my first job in 1956 (as a feature writer on a million-and-a-half readership Fleet Street magazine. 
 
There 's no way any scheme based on savings and reinvestment could have given that kind of return.
Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

Quote
PS: I mean kid themselves they earned and saved enough to buy an annuity worth the social security benefits. Of course it's true that social security beneficiaries in general earned the right to their pension by contributing to other people when it was their turn.


And, again population growth was also considered to be exponential when the scheme was developed, that is they planned for the population to grow as such a rate, that with the early deaths of most of the participants, and the fast growing population, there would always be 30 or 40 or 50 persons paying into the fund, for every one drawing upon it. This is much like paying a premium for "Fools Gold", as it turned out, and it is today just stupid.
I just don't believe that's true. It may be partof the smokescreen put up by the government because it had to sell the idea to the stupid who think you can save your way to a guaranteed old age, but it's the fault of the US electorate that such a smokescreen was necessary.
 
Guaranteed welfare and old age benefits can only be paid out of current taxes. Nothing else works.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 12:17
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Why do you think that? It is a bit eurocentric, don't you think?
Because the protestant work ethic comes from protestant cultures and their colonies.
It's much easier to convince an Argentinian to have a siester than an Australian.
 
That's not to say that you can't also occupy Argentinians by going to the moon, but you don't have as much idealisation of the virtues of "hard yakka" (hard work) in Argentina.
 
(Curiously, how would Argentina compare to Chilie? Because as there are more Germans in Argentina you might see some of the protestant work ethic? I'm not sure just guessing.)


Edited by Omar al Hashim - 01 Apr 2011 at 12:19
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Why do you think that? It is a bit eurocentric, don't you think?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 09:19

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

However I think that last sentence should be 'Unemployment should not be so much a problem as lack of income and boredom'. I do think it is seen as a problem thanks to the prevailing work ethic.

I think the work ethic culture only applies in English-speaking and Northern European countries. I generally think it is a good thing, and I agree with that ethic that work has personal benefits regardless of economic benefits (however, convincing women that they don't all need to have a career is perhaps an improvement*). The trick - and only workable solution really - is to employ people to do tasks that don't strictly need to be done but are accepted as good expenditure by the community at large - ie, sending a man to the moon.

 

*So is convincing tradesmen (at least here) that doing a good job first time is important

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote opuslola Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 06:42
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by opuslola opuslola wrote:

Good God, what a wealth of premises. It almost makes one want to puke. The solution is to raise taxes? If so then please see this; http://www.taxfoundation.org/publications/show/151.html

Don't see your point. When the US was rich and economically dominant itb had very high tax rates. Since tax rates started going down the US has got progressively weaker and weaker, at least relatively. Everybody's aware of that: it's the point we are making.


But Graham, if I may call you by your given name, Do you really assert that it was Federal Spending that financed a "Rich America?" I would consider that view as overly simplistic.

Quote And while we are at it, why not look at the original Social Security rates? And here is one of the biggest lies of all times, it is called "The Social Security Trust Fund!"

Agreed. It's a sham to deceive those who insanely believe that everyone can guarantee themselved a safe old age by saving money. All state pension schemes are paid for out od contemporary taxation: that's the only way a guarantee is even possible (and  of course even then there's no 100% guarantee in this life). 


In reality, the origin of the SS system, was to provide a small pension as a supplement to one's own savings, etc., and not an end of all personal responsibility. Second, it was based upon fake or false mortality rates, that is it was thought that most benefits would not ever have to be paid, since most of them were expected to have died by the time they turned age 65. Which is, unfortunately, the case with Male African Americans today. But with the rise of longer lived people the scheme was never adjusted, thus the plan to move the age upwards today, is mostly too little and too late. Perhaps age 75 would be a good start?

Quote But, the sad fact is, that our congress and our presidents,never made sure that this so called "Trust Fund" was really in some type of "Trust", that is unless you really trust your politicians? NO, instead, our sacred band of brothers, who have managed this nation since 1913, have but placed "IOU's into the Trust Fund" so they could spend this money for the benefit of their collegues and even some times for their voters. The really sad fact is, that Social Security was originated and kept as a gigantic "Ponzie Scheme", from its inception.

It's not a Ponzi scheme. It only pretends to be a kind of Ponzi scheme to people who don't understand reality. The reality is that social security takes money from people in taxes and gives it to other people in benefits. Most countries don't bother pretending anything else, but the US has to because people don't have sufficient sense of community or responsibility for the elderly. (Or sick, or other other welfare benefits.) Moreover the beneficiaries like to kid themselves they earned what they are getting back.

 


Well, that is exactly correct if you are suggesting that in the early years of the system (up until the 1980's, I believe), the amount withheld from one's pay, was so miniscule, that those reaching age 65 recovered all of their investment within a year or two.

PS: I mean kid themselves they earned and saved enough to buy an annuity worth the social security benefits. Of course it's true that social security beneficiaries in general earned the right to their pension by contributing to other people when it was their turn.


And, again population growth was also considered to be exponential when the scheme was developed, that is they planned for the population to grow as such a rate, that with the early deaths of most of the participants, and the fast growing population, there would always be 30 or 40 or 50 persons paying into the fund, for every one drawing upon it. This is much like paying a premium for "Fools Gold", as it turned out, and it is today just stupid.

Regards,
Ronald
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pikeshot1600 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 06:05
Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

I mean the republican couterproposal not Clinton's plan. It was essentially the same as Obama's plan according to people involved in the debate two years ago.
 
As for the alliance with the church, come on, the evangelicals have been at the forefront in support of the corporate agenda, Pat Robertson and his CBN network as well as other televangelists (who are mostly corporate stooges) are demonising unions and "big government" and preaching that God loves the rich and that poor people are evil and what not.
 
Al-Jassas


So we can agree to restrict "the church" here to the fundamentalist tax-avoiders who have movie star life styles?  Smile

I am pretty cynical about the evangelical fundamentalists and the pentacostals, but most others do not worship the people who are screwing them.




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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 04:36
I mean the republican couterproposal not Clinton's plan. It was essentially the same as Obama's plan according to people involved in the debate two years ago.
 
As for the alliance with the church, come on, the evangelicals have been at the forefront in support of the corporate agenda, Pat Robertson and his CBN network as well as other televangelists (who are mostly corporate stooges) are demonising unions and "big government" and preaching that God loves the rich and that poor people are evil and what not.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pikeshot1600 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 03:59
Al-Jassas,

If by the "HC bill back in the 90s" you mean the Clinton fiasco, that was seen as health care for poor people paid for by the middle class.  The only voice left at the time praising that was Hilary Clinton.  That initiative went down in flames.

"Can you explain "people with money" and "Their alliance with the church?"

The "church" is hardly monolithic.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 03:49
Originally posted by pikeshot1600 pikeshot1600 wrote:


Politicians do what politicians do.  They lie about reality and put off the worst problems until they are retired on pensions - paid for by taxpayers.  

 
 
Politicians do what the people with money tell them to do. These same politicians who advocate less taxes and repeal of "Obamacare" voted to increase taxes and proposed an HC bill back in the 90s that was much more "socialist" than "Obamacare". What changed was that people with money and influence have gained much more money and more influence than ever before.
 
They now control the media and when I say media I don't just mean Fake news or other so called "liberal" news networks, they also control talk radio (listened too by nearly 50-60 million people every week), newspapers, the majority of "respectable" think tanks (which are the main source for political staff in Congress and elsewhere) and even "liberal" Academia (watch the "Inside Job" on this last point). Their alliance with the church is of course well known too.
 
These are used to feed delusions to a politically naive population who go to elect Obama without knowing what the hell Obama stands for or rally against "Obamacare" while at the same time agreeing with individual items within the bill when detached from it.
 
Politicians are by nature survivalists and since this was where the wind was going they went with it.
 
 
Al-Jassas
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pikeshot1600 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2011 at 02:32
Graham and I have disagreed on many things, but in this I agree with him.  People tend to think of things they "save" as being in a piggy bank.  So putting savings in the piggy bank = good; paying tax = bad.  It does not compute to individuals that tax payments can come back in benefits.  That may be because there has been the best part of a generation when people now are not seeing any benefit from what they DO pay in taxes.

Education quality overall has declined; infrastructure has deteriorated; jobs have disappeared - at least for many; Congress has handed health care over to insurance companies, and doctors now are more marginally involved in practicing medicine.  Much medicine is paid for by tax dollars - public employees; Medicare; medicaid.

Maybe the most egregious (and blatant; and cynical) example of no benefit for public expense is the TARP of 2008.  Robber baron corporations were bailed out with more debt, part of the "deal" being the banks would lend to prop up housing.  That hasn't happened. 

The banks are now quite profitable on the citizen taxpayers' backs and they sit on the profits and buy back their stock to pump up their managements' options - and pay out huge bonuses.  Profits come in, rather than lend in the short term you pump up the P&L and get big bonuses.

Housing has basically collapsed, but the banks don't lend and just blame it on the regulators...."Oooh, too few people can qualify any longer."  There hasn't been any slack for people in foreclosure.

"Stimulus" money was to pump economic activity.  It has resulted in profit but not in jobs - no benefit to average taxpayers.  It also plugged holes in state and local public budgets, but now that "money" is spent and there is no more - huge cuts in state and local public spending are coming (and as Wyatt Earp said, "Hell is comin' with 'em.")  NO benefit for taxes.

So, in the last few years, trillions more in debt has been created which can only be serviced by taxes.  When it comes time to bite the bullet and spend on crumbling infrastructure, debt service will start to eat up too much of the tax revenue that must go elsewhere rather than to jobs here.

Politicians do what politicians do.  They lie about reality and put off the worst problems until they are retired on pensions - paid for by taxpayers.  That is in addition to book deals and speaking engagements and business contacts that came from being visible in public life while they were being paid by....taxpayers.

No wonder no one thinks they are getting anything out of their taxes.  That is much of why they can't understand the necessity of higher taxation.

 


Edited by pikeshot1600 - 01 Apr 2011 at 03:29
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