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6pacfershur


Nov 30, 2011, 6:14 PM
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what is a 1%er
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i searched the forums and didnt find this, so....how much money do you have to make to be in the 1%?
another thread quoted $350K per year, i called bravo sierra on that; i googled How Many Americans Are Millionaires and got a wide range of answers: 8.4 million, 10 mil, 3.1 mil, 6.7 mil, etc....3.1 million is very close to 1% of the US population; yes, i know, who gives a shit


lena_chita
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Nov 30, 2011, 6:49 PM
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Re: [6pacfershur] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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I believe the 1% being above $350K that has been mentioned is top 1% for AGI (adjusted gross income). The total income before all deductions is probably more like $500K for the top 1%.

And don't confuse a millionaire (someone whose total assets are valued at more than a million) with someone EARNING 1million a year. Remember, a lot of small business owners are probably millionaires if you count their total assets, but they pay themselves a relatively small annual salary.

I really do not have any trouble believing that $350K annual AGI puts you into the top 1%.


guangzhou


Nov 30, 2011, 7:01 PM
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Re: [lena_chita] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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lena_chita wrote:
I believe the 1% being above $350K that has been mentioned is top 1% for AGI (adjusted gross income). The total income before all deductions is probably more like $500K for the top 1%.

And don't confuse a millionaire (someone whose total assets are valued at more than a million) with someone EARNING 1million a year. Remember, a lot of small business owners are probably millionaires if you count their total assets, but they pay themselves a relatively small annual salary.

I really do not have any trouble believing that $350K annual AGI puts you into the top 1%.

Considering how many Indonesians I personally know who earn this much and are definitely not in the countries top one percent of earner, I have trouble believing 350,000 USD gets you in the top 1% in America.


I do agree on your observation about making a million versus owning a million. I do still think that the top 1%, very small number of the population, earn more than 1 million a year.

a 6 figure income in America isn't uncommon these days.


6pacfershur


Nov 30, 2011, 7:22 PM
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Re: [lena_chita] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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lena_chita wrote:

And don't confuse a millionaire (someone whose total assets are valued at more than a million) with someone EARNING 1million a year. Remember, a lot of small business owners are probably millionaires if you count their total assets, but they pay themselves a relatively small annual salary.

I really do not have any trouble believing that $350K annual AGI puts you into the top 1%.

yes, i understand the difference between assets and income; the freaking mayor in the town next to me grosses $500k a year!


guangzhou


Dec 1, 2011, 12:07 AM
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Re: [6pacfershur] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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6pacfershur wrote:
lena_chita wrote:

And don't confuse a millionaire (someone whose total assets are valued at more than a million) with someone EARNING 1million a year. Remember, a lot of small business owners are probably millionaires if you count their total assets, but they pay themselves a relatively small annual salary.

I really do not have any trouble believing that $350K annual AGI puts you into the top 1%.

yes, i understand the difference between assets and income; the freaking mayor in the town next to me grosses $500k a year!

I doubt he is in the top 1%.

Of course, I see nothing wrong with people going out and trying to earn large sums of money either.


Partner rrrADAM


Dec 1, 2011, 3:41 AM
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Re: [guangzhou] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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Long before "occupy" started using '1%', it was used by motorcycle enthusiests to describe bikers who gave the majority of bikers a bad name... Those 'outlaw bikers' made a patch and wore it as a badge of honor.


http://en.wikipedia.org/...e_club#One_percenter

I know 2 well, through recovery, who wear this patch. One of them is a Long Shoreman at the port in Long Beach, and he earns about $300K per year operating the gantry cranes that offload the ships, and thinks it's funny that he is considered a 1%er in that way... He spends him money gambling and on escorts.


(This post was edited by rrrADAM on Dec 1, 2011, 3:46 AM)


Allfred


Dec 1, 2011, 5:27 AM
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Re: [6pacfershur] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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Page 34 should give you some supporting documents:

http://www.census.gov/...2011pubs/p60-239.pdf

However all that tells you is that over 200K is 3.9% of the population. You should notice the difference between the Mean and the Median and be able to infer something from that as well.

page 41 shows the income limits for up to the 95th percentile. 180K gets you in the top 5%.

Pg 61 and 62 are interesting too.


Allfred


Dec 1, 2011, 5:39 AM
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Re: [guangzhou] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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guangzhou wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
I believe the 1% being above $350K that has been mentioned is top 1% for AGI (adjusted gross income). The total income before all deductions is probably more like $500K for the top 1%.

And don't confuse a millionaire (someone whose total assets are valued at more than a million) with someone EARNING 1million a year. Remember, a lot of small business owners are probably millionaires if you count their total assets, but they pay themselves a relatively small annual salary.

I really do not have any trouble believing that $350K annual AGI puts you into the top 1%.

Considering how many Indonesians I personally know who earn this much and are definitely not in the countries top one percent of earner, I have trouble believing 350,000 USD gets you in the top 1% in America.


I do agree on your observation about making a million versus owning a million. I do still think that the top 1%, very small number of the population, earn more than 1 million a year.

a 6 figure income in America isn't uncommon these days.

Study these two links:
https://www.cia.gov/...ctbook/geos/id.htmll

https://www.cia.gov/...actbook/geos/us.html

Look at the differences in gdp per person: $4,200 in Indo and $47,200 in USA. Now look at the "Poverty rate" and the "Household income or consumption by percent share" categories and see that they are about equal.

There are only two possibilities: 1.) You are full of shit. 2.) You only know people in the 1%. I'm picking 1.)


lena_chita
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Dec 1, 2011, 8:16 AM
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Re: [guangzhou] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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guangzhou wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
I believe the 1% being above $350K that has been mentioned is top 1% for AGI (adjusted gross income). The total income before all deductions is probably more like $500K for the top 1%.

And don't confuse a millionaire (someone whose total assets are valued at more than a million) with someone EARNING 1million a year. Remember, a lot of small business owners are probably millionaires if you count their total assets, but they pay themselves a relatively small annual salary.

I really do not have any trouble believing that $350K annual AGI puts you into the top 1%.

Considering how many Indonesians I personally know who earn this much and are definitely not in the countries top one percent of earner, I have trouble believing 350,000 USD gets you in the top 1% in America.
...
a 6 figure income in America isn't uncommon these days.

The $350K figure comes fro source that looks trustworthy to me. All the other numbers that I've seen don't substantially disagree. You are basing your "trouble believing" on what exactly?

6-figure salaries are not uncommon? Yeah, for some. But median household income in the US is somewhere around $50K. $350K AGI is 7 times more than that, I really have no trouble picturing this distribution.


6pacfershur


Dec 1, 2011, 9:32 AM
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Re: [6pacfershur] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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good morning everyone....listen to some sound-bytes of OWS protestors; they almost always refer to the 1% as owning or controlling wealth, that means assets, not wages...........i know a dentist, a plumber and a commercial fisherman who make at least $350k per year; they are great people, great climbers and work their ass off; if this is the type of workers OWS is against, i withdrawal my support


(This post was edited by 6pacfershur on Dec 1, 2011, 9:34 AM)


rmsusa


Dec 1, 2011, 10:12 AM
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Re: [6pacfershur] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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And ..... if you look at assets, not income, the OWS is railing against a good percentage of retirees, who have very small incomes, but, sometimes, significant wealth that they spend down with time. I'm not sure I have anything against someone who worked hard, saved, invested well and now enjoys it.

I think the (asset/income, gross/AGI, %of what?) confusion is just part of what I perceive as the generally unfocused character of the OWS phenomenon.


scrapedape


Dec 1, 2011, 11:33 AM
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Re: [guangzhou] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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guangzhou wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
I believe the 1% being above $350K that has been mentioned is top 1% for AGI (adjusted gross income). The total income before all deductions is probably more like $500K for the top 1%.

And don't confuse a millionaire (someone whose total assets are valued at more than a million) with someone EARNING 1million a year. Remember, a lot of small business owners are probably millionaires if you count their total assets, but they pay themselves a relatively small annual salary.

I really do not have any trouble believing that $350K annual AGI puts you into the top 1%.

Considering how many Indonesians I personally know who earn this much and are definitely not in the countries top one percent of earner, I have trouble believing 350,000 USD gets you in the top 1% in America.


I do agree on your observation about making a million versus owning a million. I do still think that the top 1%, very small number of the population, earn more than 1 million a year.

a 6 figure income in America isn't uncommon these days.

Why worry about actual data when you can just pull numbers out of your ass?

http://www.census.gov/.../hhinc/new06_000.htm

This indicates that 250k is a 98th percentile (top 2%) level for household income in the US.


guangzhou


Dec 1, 2011, 5:57 PM
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Re: [Allfred] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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Allfred wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
I believe the 1% being above $350K that has been mentioned is top 1% for AGI (adjusted gross income). The total income before all deductions is probably more like $500K for the top 1%.

And don't confuse a millionaire (someone whose total assets are valued at more than a million) with someone EARNING 1million a year. Remember, a lot of small business owners are probably millionaires if you count their total assets, but they pay themselves a relatively small annual salary.

I really do not have any trouble believing that $350K annual AGI puts you into the top 1%.

Considering how many Indonesians I personally know who earn this much and are definitely not in the countries top one percent of earner, I have trouble believing 350,000 USD gets you in the top 1% in America.


I do agree on your observation about making a million versus owning a million. I do still think that the top 1%, very small number of the population, earn more than 1 million a year.

a 6 figure income in America isn't uncommon these days.

Study these two links:
https://www.cia.gov/...ctbook/geos/id.htmll

https://www.cia.gov/...actbook/geos/us.html

Look at the differences in gdp per person: $4,200 in Indo and $47,200 in USA. Now look at the "Poverty rate" and the "Household income or consumption by percent share" categories and see that they are about equal.

There are only two possibilities: 1.) You are full of shit. 2.) You only know people in the 1%. I'm picking 1.)

Come down, I will introduce you to a few of the people clearing 350,000 a year right here in Surabaya. We cans tart with the my climbing gym membership roster.

GDP per person here, you really need to visit Indonesia if you believe that number to be an accurate representation. I can take you to the cliff and I develop and you can meet plenty of people, the entire village, who don't clear 1000 USD a year.

During interview, I was asking potential job candidates what they made at their full time job, non cleared 100 USD a month, about half made 60 USD a month. All have motorcycles tot ravel with, and a house with electricity and running water in the city limits.

Reading statistics online is no substitute for seeing things first hand.

Average income of an Adult member of the climbing gym I own here in Indonesia is 175,000 USD per person. I have at least 5 members who clear 1/2 million U.S. a year and I have far less than 1% of Surabaya as members of my gym.

On averages, if one person is making 1000 a year and the other making 2 million a year, the average income of these two people just over 1 Million per person.


ubu


Dec 1, 2011, 7:10 PM
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guangzhou wrote:
Average income of an Adult member of the climbing gym I own here in Indonesia is 175,000 USD per person. I have at least 5 members who clear 1/2 million U.S. a year and I have far less than 1% of Surabaya as members of my gym.

That is quite extraordinary. You must have set up shop in a very unusual locale.

guangzhou wrote:
On averages, if one person is making 1000 a year and the other making 2 million a year, the average income of these two people just over 1 Million per person.

If 100 families net $10k/yr and 1 family nets $1B/yr, the median (not mean) household income is....$10k/yr.

Annual median household income in the US is around $50k.


guangzhou


Dec 1, 2011, 7:51 PM
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ubu wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
Average income of an Adult member of the climbing gym I own here in Indonesia is 175,000 USD per person. I have at least 5 members who clear 1/2 million U.S. a year and I have far less than 1% of Surabaya as members of my gym.

That is quite extraordinary. You must have set up shop in a very unusual locale.

guangzhou wrote:
On averages, if one person is making 1000 a year and the other making 2 million a year, the average income of these two people just over 1 Million per person.

If 100 families net $10k/yr and 1 family nets $1B/yr, the median (not mean) household income is....$10k/yr.

Annual median household income in the US is around $50k.

Not an unusual local, money in Indonesia is consolidated in two main places. Jakarta mostly followed by Surabaya. Much money is invested in Bali and Papua, but the money is still in Jakarta. We are also targeting a very specific income level with our business model. 15 USD to climb for a day is not accessible to the average Indonesian or much of the Indonesian middle class. Our Market is defined as Middle up.

Our next couple of gym locations will be in JK because the market there is much bigger.

Again, looking at the stats doesn't give you a good idea of what life is like here. Distribution of wealth here is very different than in America.

Good to see you know you math vocab. I doubt anyone actually knows what the median income per family is in Indonesia. This is a country that doesn't even know it's actual population because they don't count all tribes, outer islands barely get counted.

Here is what I know. When I met my wife, who is Indonesian with a college degree, she was earning 123 USD a month. She took the job because it was double what she was being paid at her previous job. She drove a 3 year old Chevy, we still have it, had no debt, and belong to a fitness center. (Fairly middle Class life)

Not sure what your Median example has to do with Indonesia and my post. Can you clarify so I don't assume things.


(This post was edited by guangzhou on Dec 1, 2011, 7:59 PM)


dan2see


Dec 2, 2011, 12:19 AM
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An inch is as good as a mile.

Before OWS became popular, I used the word "elite" meaning anybody who has the power to make decisions that affect my world. I include CEO's, big owners, and some government.

In the movie "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof", the 1% guy was called "Big Daddy", he was a wealthy cotton tycoon. Everybody else acted or reacted around him because they had no choice.

Here is Wikipedia's take on elite:
Wikipedia wrote:
Elite (occasionally spelled élite) (Latin, electus - "chosen") refers to an exceptional or privileged group that wields considerable power within its sphere of influence. Depending on the context, this power might be physical, spiritual, intellectual or financial.

Here is Wikipedia's take on 1%
Wikipedia wrote:
The One Percent is a 2006 documentary about the growing wealth gap between America's wealthy elite compared to the overall citizenry. It was created by Jamie Johnson, an heir to the Johnson & Johnson fortune, and produced by Jamie Johnson and Nick Kurzon. The film's title refers to the top one percent of Americans in terms of wealth, who controlled 42.2 percent of total financial wealth in 2004.

In our history, we sometimes see some powerless group decide they are fed up and can't take it anymore. There's some other folks who have the power to make the powerless group miserable for a long time. The transition is always opposed by the folks in power.

Folks take sides and argue, which is easy for me because I'm right, and also I'm more clever than you. You'll get a lot noise, a lot of debate, and usually somebody's blood.

Eventually the powerless group finds a way to get along with the elite. Then it's somebody else's turn.


ubu


Dec 2, 2011, 4:19 AM
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guangzhou wrote:
ubu wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
Average income of an Adult member of the climbing gym I own here in Indonesia is 175,000 USD per person. I have at least 5 members who clear 1/2 million U.S. a year and I have far less than 1% of Surabaya as members of my gym.

That is quite extraordinary. You must have set up shop in a very unusual locale.

guangzhou wrote:
On averages, if one person is making 1000 a year and the other making 2 million a year, the average income of these two people just over 1 Million per person.

If 100 families net $10k/yr and 1 family nets $1B/yr, the median (not mean) household income is....$10k/yr.

Annual median household income in the US is around $50k.

Not an unusual local, money in Indonesia is consolidated in two main places. Jakarta mostly followed by Surabaya. Much money is invested in Bali and Papua, but the money is still in Jakarta. We are also targeting a very specific income level with our business model. 15 USD to climb for a day is not accessible to the average Indonesian or much of the Indonesian middle class. Our Market is defined as Middle up.

Our next couple of gym locations will be in JK because the market there is much bigger.

Again, looking at the stats doesn't give you a good idea of what life is like here. Distribution of wealth here is very different than in America.

I live in one of the most affluent areas in the US, but there is no way the *median* income of members at my climbing gym is anywhere near the level you're talking about. Of course I have no idea what the mean income might look like -- a couple uber-rich people could shift the numbers substantially.

In reply to:
Not sure what your Median example has to do with Indonesia and my post. Can you clarify so I don't assume things.

See above. I was curious if your typical member rakes in $175k/yr, or if the average salary across your clientele is $175k/yr. If the former...wow.


guangzhou


Dec 2, 2011, 5:53 AM
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ubu wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
ubu wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
Average income of an Adult member of the climbing gym I own here in Indonesia is 175,000 USD per person. I have at least 5 members who clear 1/2 million U.S. a year and I have far less than 1% of Surabaya as members of my gym.

That is quite extraordinary. You must have set up shop in a very unusual locale.

guangzhou wrote:
On averages, if one person is making 1000 a year and the other making 2 million a year, the average income of these two people just over 1 Million per person.

If 100 families net $10k/yr and 1 family nets $1B/yr, the median (not mean) household income is....$10k/yr.

Annual median household income in the US is around $50k.

Not an unusual local, money in Indonesia is consolidated in two main places. Jakarta mostly followed by Surabaya. Much money is invested in Bali and Papua, but the money is still in Jakarta. We are also targeting a very specific income level with our business model. 15 USD to climb for a day is not accessible to the average Indonesian or much of the Indonesian middle class. Our Market is defined as Middle up.

Our next couple of gym locations will be in JK because the market there is much bigger.

Again, looking at the stats doesn't give you a good idea of what life is like here. Distribution of wealth here is very different than in America.

I live in one of the most affluent areas in the US, but there is no way the *median* income of members at my climbing gym is anywhere near the level you're talking about. Of course I have no idea what the mean income might look like -- a couple uber-rich people could shift the numbers substantially.

In reply to:
Not sure what your Median example has to do with Indonesia and my post. Can you clarify so I don't assume things.

See above. I was curious if your typical member rakes in $175k/yr, or if the average salary across your clientele is $175k/yr. If the former...wow.

You would have to experience Indonesia, or another developing nation, first hand to understand the financial situation here. Especially when dealing with such an exclusive/elite idea as a air-conditioned climbing gym.


scrapedape


Dec 2, 2011, 5:59 AM
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guangzhou wrote:
Come down, I will introduce you to a few of the people clearing 350,000 a year right here in Surabaya. We cans tart with the my climbing gym membership roster.

GDP per person here, you really need to visit Indonesia if you believe that number to be an accurate representation. I can take you to the cliff and I develop and you can meet plenty of people, the entire village, who don't clear 1000 USD a year.

During interview, I was asking potential job candidates what they made at their full time job, non cleared 100 USD a month, about half made 60 USD a month. All have motorcycles tot ravel with, and a house with electricity and running water in the city limits.

Reading statistics online is no substitute for seeing things first hand.

Average income of an Adult member of the climbing gym I own here in Indonesia is 175,000 USD per person. I have at least 5 members who clear 1/2 million U.S. a year and I have far less than 1% of Surabaya as members of my gym.

On averages, if one person is making 1000 a year and the other making 2 million a year, the average income of these two people just over 1 Million per person.

How does this square with your earlier claim that $350K wouldn't be top 1% in Indonesia, let alone the US?


guangzhou


Dec 2, 2011, 5:13 PM
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scrapedape wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
Come down, I will introduce you to a few of the people clearing 350,000 a year right here in Surabaya. We cans tart with the my climbing gym membership roster.

GDP per person here, you really need to visit Indonesia if you believe that number to be an accurate representation. I can take you to the cliff and I develop and you can meet plenty of people, the entire village, who don't clear 1000 USD a year.

During interview, I was asking potential job candidates what they made at their full time job, non cleared 100 USD a month, about half made 60 USD a month. All have motorcycles tot ravel with, and a house with electricity and running water in the city limits.

Reading statistics online is no substitute for seeing things first hand.

Average income of an Adult member of the climbing gym I own here in Indonesia is 175,000 USD per person. I have at least 5 members who clear 1/2 million U.S. a year and I have far less than 1% of Surabaya as members of my gym.

On averages, if one person is making 1000 a year and the other making 2 million a year, the average income of these two people just over 1 Million per person.

How does this square with your earlier claim that $350K wouldn't be top 1% in Indonesia, let alone the US?

Because the top 1% here earn much more. We're talking about people who own several oil, mining operation, and other huge companies that deal in Natural recourse.

One person I climb worth here own four shopping malls, Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, and Indonesia and a chain of 5 start hotels in each of those countries.

I would bet a top 1% in America spend more than 350,000 USD on a house mortgage annually.

I agree 350,000 get you in the high tax rate with the 1%, but you're not one of them.


scrapedape


Dec 3, 2011, 11:41 AM
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guangzhou wrote:
scrapedape wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
Come down, I will introduce you to a few of the people clearing 350,000 a year right here in Surabaya. We cans tart with the my climbing gym membership roster.

GDP per person here, you really need to visit Indonesia if you believe that number to be an accurate representation. I can take you to the cliff and I develop and you can meet plenty of people, the entire village, who don't clear 1000 USD a year.

During interview, I was asking potential job candidates what they made at their full time job, non cleared 100 USD a month, about half made 60 USD a month. All have motorcycles tot ravel with, and a house with electricity and running water in the city limits.

Reading statistics online is no substitute for seeing things first hand.

Average income of an Adult member of the climbing gym I own here in Indonesia is 175,000 USD per person. I have at least 5 members who clear 1/2 million U.S. a year and I have far less than 1% of Surabaya as members of my gym.

On averages, if one person is making 1000 a year and the other making 2 million a year, the average income of these two people just over 1 Million per person.

How does this square with your earlier claim that $350K wouldn't be top 1% in Indonesia, let alone the US?

Because the top 1% here earn much more. We're talking about people who own several oil, mining operation, and other huge companies that deal in Natural recourse.

One person I climb worth here own four shopping malls, Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, and Indonesia and a chain of 5 start hotels in each of those countries.

I would bet a top 1% in America spend more than 350,000 USD on a house mortgage annually.

I agree 350,000 get you in the high tax rate with the 1%, but you're not one of them.

Look, myself and others have posted links to statistics indicating that $350K is the rough cutoff point for the top 1% in the US. You continue to counter this with anecdotes and conjecture. Why should we believe you are right?

Moreover, you have yourself talked about how many people you see making less than $100/month and whole villages making less than $1000/year. So how does that support your claim that 1% are making 350K? An alternative interpretation of your observations is that your clientele and climbing partners are more like the top 0.1 or 0.01%.

It's easy to get blinded by what we regard as normal. If I only based the numbers on the people I see on a regular basis, I would guess that a typical HH income in the US is somewhere on the order of $100K, because I live in an expensive city and hang out predominantly with professionals in their early 30s. I know this isn't the case, however, because other people have actually collected data on this, and found that median HH income is about half that level.


guangzhou


Dec 3, 2011, 8:49 PM
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scrapedape wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
scrapedape wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
Come down, I will introduce you to a few of the people clearing 350,000 a year right here in Surabaya. We cans tart with the my climbing gym membership roster.

GDP per person here, you really need to visit Indonesia if you believe that number to be an accurate representation. I can take you to the cliff and I develop and you can meet plenty of people, the entire village, who don't clear 1000 USD a year.

During interview, I was asking potential job candidates what they made at their full time job, non cleared 100 USD a month, about half made 60 USD a month. All have motorcycles tot ravel with, and a house with electricity and running water in the city limits.

Reading statistics online is no substitute for seeing things first hand.

Average income of an Adult member of the climbing gym I own here in Indonesia is 175,000 USD per person. I have at least 5 members who clear 1/2 million U.S. a year and I have far less than 1% of Surabaya as members of my gym.

On averages, if one person is making 1000 a year and the other making 2 million a year, the average income of these two people just over 1 Million per person.

How does this square with your earlier claim that $350K wouldn't be top 1% in Indonesia, let alone the US?

Because the top 1% here earn much more. We're talking about people who own several oil, mining operation, and other huge companies that deal in Natural recourse.

One person I climb worth here own four shopping malls, Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, and Indonesia and a chain of 5 start hotels in each of those countries.

I would bet a top 1% in America spend more than 350,000 USD on a house mortgage annually.

I agree 350,000 get you in the high tax rate with the 1%, but you're not one of them.

Look, myself and others have posted links to statistics indicating that $350K is the rough cutoff point for the top 1% in the US. You continue to counter this with anecdotes and conjecture. Why should we believe you are right?

Moreover, you have yourself talked about how many people you see making less than $100/month and whole villages making less than $1000/year. So how does that support your claim that 1% are making 350K? An alternative interpretation of your observations is that your clientele and climbing partners are more like the top 0.1 or 0.01%.

It's easy to get blinded by what we regard as normal. If I only based the numbers on the people I see on a regular basis, I would guess that a typical HH income in the US is somewhere on the order of $100K, because I live in an expensive city and hang out predominantly with professionals in their early 30s. I know this isn't the case, however, because other people have actually collected data on this, and found that median HH income is about half that level.

That's because the data use is just income for a job based on tax returns. So, Again, I still believe that the top 1% of America os earning substantially more.

To know exactly how much more, you would have to look at job income, investments and other capital gains, and residuals.

Most of the top 1% are their because of the various businesses they own and they tend to keep the salaries to themselves low, but the profit of those companies are still part of their earnings in my book. A business is a great tax shelter. The top earners also use the laws to create holding companies to help lower personal income and tax liability.

People here keep saying the top needs to may more taxes, but the same data that identifies the top 1% as 350,000 or more year says that the top 1% pay approximately 40% of America's federal taxes. Hardly seems like they should be paying more in my book.

So, based on Salary and work bonus alone, I can believe 350,000, but the true top 1% are earning much much more.

I knew one guy while living on the Kentucky Tennessee border who owned a chain of strip clubs outside a few military bases. As the CEO he paid himself a salary of 1500 (one thousand five hundred) dollars month. All aspects of his life were paid for via various business and holding companies with expense accounts.

Every year he qualified for an earned income credit, he definitely had are venue of more than 1/2 million a year, he just knew how to use the system to lower his income in the eyes of the taxman.

Salary alone at 350,000 I can believe that, but personal revenue for the rich is much more complicated that their paychecks.

As for being blinded by what we personally experience, I agree with you. Works in both directions.


(This post was edited by guangzhou on Dec 3, 2011, 8:55 PM)


petsfed


Dec 4, 2011, 3:50 PM
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Re: [guangzhou] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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So you're saying that the real defining characteristic of a 1%-er is making enough to utilize legal tax evasion that the rest can't?

Ok.

By the way, there are essentially two major poles in taxation philosophy: one says that it should be fair in the sense that everybody pays a similar proportion of their extra money. That is, if you're making very little, then what's left over after cost of living is not gonna be much. However, if you're making a lot, you should have a lot more, both in total and in terms of percentage of total, after cost of living. The other pole says that it should be fair in that tax burden, the percent of the government's revenue per fraction of the population, should be evenly distributed. Of course, if the 1% only paid 1% of the taxes, their effective tax rate, even before all the loop holes, would be well below what people below the poverty line pay. Meanwhile, the bottom 12% (chosen to make the math easier, its even worse if you break it down to the bottom 2%) would be expected to pay more their average annual income, in taxes. Clearly an extreme case, but you see my point. The end goal is to collect a set percentage of the GDP in either case, and I think that the first pole is a lot more fair than the second.


guangzhou


Dec 4, 2011, 4:37 PM
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petsfed wrote:
So you're saying that the real defining characteristic of a 1%-er is making enough to utilize legal tax evasion that the rest can't?

Ok.

By the way, there are essentially two major poles in taxation philosophy: one says that it should be fair in the sense that everybody pays a similar proportion of their extra money. That is, if you're making very little, then what's left over after cost of living is not gonna be much. However, if you're making a lot, you should have a lot more, both in total and in terms of percentage of total, after cost of living. The other pole says that it should be fair in that tax burden, the percent of the government's revenue per fraction of the population, should be evenly distributed. Of course, if the 1% only paid 1% of the taxes, their effective tax rate, even before all the loop holes, would be well below what people below the poverty line pay. Meanwhile, the bottom 12% (chosen to make the math easier, its even worse if you break it down to the bottom 2%) would be expected to pay more their average annual income, in taxes. Clearly an extreme case, but you see my point. The end goal is to collect a set percentage of the GDP in either case, and I think that the first pole is a lot more fair than the second.

A lot more fair to the people at the bottom, not the people at the top. Personally, I don't believe someone should be penalized for being successful at making money.

I ddn't say anything the top 1% using tax evasion other can't. Any here can use the same legal tax code to save money, it's just that most people here don't want to use the time to look for ways to save on taxes, they take their tax return to HNR Block and file for early returns.

It's very easy to create a small business or corporation in the United States. Most people just rather use their time doing something else, like complaining about those who do.


ubu


Dec 4, 2011, 4:45 PM
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guangzhou wrote:
petsfed wrote:
So you're saying that the real defining characteristic of a 1%-er is making enough to utilize legal tax evasion that the rest can't?

Ok.

By the way, there are essentially two major poles in taxation philosophy: one says that it should be fair in the sense that everybody pays a similar proportion of their extra money. That is, if you're making very little, then what's left over after cost of living is not gonna be much. However, if you're making a lot, you should have a lot more, both in total and in terms of percentage of total, after cost of living. The other pole says that it should be fair in that tax burden, the percent of the government's revenue per fraction of the population, should be evenly distributed. Of course, if the 1% only paid 1% of the taxes, their effective tax rate, even before all the loop holes, would be well below what people below the poverty line pay. Meanwhile, the bottom 12% (chosen to make the math easier, its even worse if you break it down to the bottom 2%) would be expected to pay more their average annual income, in taxes. Clearly an extreme case, but you see my point. The end goal is to collect a set percentage of the GDP in either case, and I think that the first pole is a lot more fair than the second.

A lot more fair to the people at the bottom, not the people at the top. Personally, I don't believe someone should be penalized for being successful at making money.

I ddn't say anything the top 1% using tax evasion other can't. Any here can use the same legal tax code to save money, it's just that most people here don't want to use the time to look for ways to save on taxes, they take their tax return to HNR Block and file for early returns.

It's very easy to create a small business or corporation in the United States. Most people just rather use their time doing something else, like complaining about those who do.

You say that as if there is some intrinsic value to starting a corporation, even if its sole purpose is tax evasion.


petsfed


Dec 4, 2011, 7:17 PM
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Actually, my mother is a small business owner. Since she does her own taxes, it means that it takes about twice as long as if it was just my folks' regular filings. If, of course, she made enough to pay an accountant to do these things, I'm sure it would be easier. Moreover, unless she retains a tax lawyer, she will remain ignorant of these tax shelters, or at least ignorant of how to use them without running afoul of the law.

Also, what would be more fair to you? What would be a fair rate? When I was at the bottom of my poverty, I lived in a low cost-of-living area. My rent was $300/month, plus another $100 or so to cover my utilities, car insurance, and a no-frills cell phone plan. Toss in another $100 a month for food, gas, and the odd movie (about once every 6 months, as I recall), I needed $6000 a year to survive. Not thrive mind you, I couldn't drive many places on that income, just survive. It sucked. That put me squarely in the bottom 10% of people filing income tax returns. And my calculations, based on the bottom 12%, show that that was about $1000 below the average income for the bottom 12%. And if the bottom 12% paid 12% of the income tax (you know, their fair share), they would have to pay $8000 a year, a piece. Meanwhile, the next 10% pays out half of their income, leaving an amazing $2000 each year to save, pay off college loans, pay off medical bills, or buy insurance.

I think a flat tax will either fuck over the poor, or bankrupt the country. And I mean seriously fuck over the poor. Like I'd be surprised if we didn't have massive violent response to such a thing. Personally, I'm looking forward to getting into the next tax bracket, since it means my income has increased a hell of a lot more than the amount I'm paying in taxes will. As I said, the graduated tax is mean to take the same proportion from the amount left after basic cost of living. If you and I both lose about a 1/2 of our income after we both pay the rent, I'd say we're both paying in equally from our ability.


6pacfershur


Dec 4, 2011, 9:41 PM
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petsfed wrote:
.... plus another $100 or so to cover my utilities, car insurance, and a no-frills cell phone plan. Toss in another $100 a month for food, gas, and the odd movie....

Holy cow! if thats true, you should write a book! i spend a minimum of $300/month on food alone....


petsfed


Dec 5, 2011, 7:48 AM
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That was at the absolute bottom of my poverty, when my meals were often brown rice and lentils (complete protein!) with some frozen veggies thrown in. I once had a craving for something sweet, so I put some sugar on oatmeal and called it dessert. Plus, I walked everywhere. I'd put maybe 30 miles on my truck a month. It helped that I lived in such a low cost-of-living area, since that drives down other things, like gas and car insurance. Still though, I wouldn't go back to it anytime soon, and I was making about $6000 a year.


Partner happiegrrrl


Dec 5, 2011, 8:34 AM
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Necessity is the mother of invention - and when it comes to survival, that is a fact.

At my highest income(handbag designer in NYC) I was just above 100K/yr salary(plus a decent medical insurance that even included dental).

Right now, I am at my lowest income(and ironically, I am back designing handbags of a sort, with my chalkbags line - hahaha).

When I left working as a handbag designer, I REALLY thought I needed to have $1K per week "to live."


I look back at those days now and wonder what the hell I was doing with all that money! Well, I suppose it WAS nice to be able to have someone give me a manicure/pedicure/bikini wax, buy socks whenever I wanted and not look at the price tag(I like socks; it harkens to childhood when my sister and I would give each other cool ones as xmas presents), order takeout from the nice italian restaurant, or sushi place or...., pop in a cab if I was tired instead of walking cross town to the subway line for my neighborhood, etc.


I am living a little too lowly these days, and it really sucks that all my entrepreneurial efforts just are not doing what I need to be able to ...even buy socks. Or a new backpack(mine is corseted in duct-tape). But... I am not going hungry, and oatmeal with sugar would not do it for me as a desert item. But, for some of us, when we have it, we spend it. Others are very capable of using less than they have. Everyone is different.

And that goes for the entrepreneurial spirit, too. Guanzhou says "anyone can start a business," and that is simply not true. It shows me that he is a man who takes his gifts for granted. Being a business owner DOES take a specific personality type. Nit everyone has that type within them, it is as simple as that.

I know he meant that the law does not stop anyone from attempting to own a business(or....does it? Someone tried to make a climbers hostel at the Gunks a few years ago - local zoning wouldn't allow it. So, he then tried a campsite. Nope! So then he said "well screw it! I will let people camp on my land for a donation!" .....And guess what - can't do that either.).


But I digress - just because a person"can* start a corporation does mean the can actually do it. And to suggest otherwise is the same mentality that says people should just quit being poor. Life is not that simple. To see it as such shows a lacking in humility.


petsfed


Dec 5, 2011, 10:44 AM
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6pacfershur wrote:
Holy cow! if thats true, you should write a book! i spend a minimum of $300/month on food alone....

Do you have kids? I'd say my girlfriend and I spend about $400 a month on food, but we also try to buy local, which drives up the cost of things, especially in winter.


scrapedape


Dec 5, 2011, 10:54 AM
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petsfed wrote:
6pacfershur wrote:
Holy cow! if thats true, you should write a book! i spend a minimum of $300/month on food alone....

Do you have kids? I'd say my girlfriend and I spend about $400 a month on food, but we also try to buy local, which drives up the cost of things, especially in winter.

My family (3 of us including an 18 month old) eats pretty well on about $500 per month. We pay attention to our budget and don't just fill the cart, but we more or less are eating what we want and could definitely cut this deeply if we needed to do so.

I guess I'm saying that I can see pretty easily both how a single person could get by on $100 per month on food, or $300+.

$100 for food and all incidentals would take more work. Not sure I would buy that book though. What would that be, anyway? A cookbook? 100 ways to prepare Ramen?


petsfed


Dec 5, 2011, 11:42 AM
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"How To Make Even Dinner Depressing"

Right up there with "Computational Humour Theory: Making Jokes Less Funny Through Science". Presumably with a forward by noted humour scientist Yakov Smirnov, who was the first to study the joke-value of invertible statements.

My point was that it sucked, and I won't soon do it again.


(This post was edited by petsfed on Dec 5, 2011, 11:42 AM)


scrapedape


Dec 5, 2011, 12:30 PM
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petsfed wrote:
"How To Make Even Dinner Depressing"

That book has already been published, under a slightly different title:



Recently named the worst book ever.

Check out the Amazon reviews:

In reply to:
“Buy this book, or don’t, I don’t care anymore” by Michael Pemulis

It used to be that I got home from work and the only thing I’d want to put in my mouth was the cold barrel of my grandfather’s shotgun. Then I discovered Sonia Allison’s Chicken Tetrazzini, and now there are two things.

(thanks for the beautiful setup)


Toast_in_the_Machine


Dec 7, 2011, 4:58 AM
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guangzhou wrote:
That's because the data use is just income for a job based on tax returns. So, Again, I still believe that the top 1% of America os earning substantially more.

Tax returns are accurate. One may find a bias at the low end for cash only transactions and at the high end for tax shelters, but tax returns are the most accurate method we have, for now, for insight on wealth.
http://www2.ucsc.edu/...ca/power/wealth.html

guangzhou wrote:
People here keep saying the top needs to may more taxes, but the same data that identifies the top 1% as 350,000 or more year says that the top 1% pay approximately 40% of America's federal taxes. Hardly seems like they should be paying more in my book.

If the top 1% own 40% of all nations net worth, shouldn't they pay at least 40% of the taxes?


guangzhou


Dec 7, 2011, 5:29 PM
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Toast_in_the_Machine wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
That's because the data use is just income for a job based on tax returns. So, Again, I still believe that the top 1% of America os earning substantially more.

Tax returns are accurate. One may find a bias at the low end for cash only transactions and at the high end for tax shelters, but tax returns are the most accurate method we have, for now, for insight on wealth.
http://www2.ucsc.edu/...ca/power/wealth.html

guangzhou wrote:
People here keep saying the top needs to may more taxes, but the same data that identifies the top 1% as 350,000 or more year says that the top 1% pay approximately 40% of America's federal taxes. Hardly seems like they should be paying more in my book.

If the top 1% own 40% of all nations net worth, shouldn't they pay at least 40% of the taxes?

They already are.

It's amazing to me that Middle Class American's are willing to blame the rich for being successful but penalizing them with higher taxes.


petsfed


Dec 7, 2011, 6:26 PM
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They already are.

It's amazing to me that Middle Class American's are willing to blame the rich for being successful but penalizing them with higher taxes.

Tell Warren Buffet that. Close the loopholes so that they actually are taxed a fair amount (as opposed to "the law says this rate, but if you start throwing in all the deductions, it becomes much MUCH less. Still, since the law says it, that must be what they're taxed at"). I would argue that the actual tax burden on the 1% actually falls largely on the second highest half-percent, since they are less able to truly take advantage of all of these loopholes. According to Forbes, the effective taxation rate starts to fall off again above an adjusted gross income around $10 million/year.

I don't think we should punish them per se. I'm just saying that your effective taxation rate should be based on how much your net worth grows, regardless of what your wage is. I see no problem with using non-profits as tax-shelters. Indeed, I see no problem with corporations as tax-shelters, provided that such cash infusions are treated as income for that corporation, and is taxed accordingly. When the corporation is used as no more than a low-tax bank account, I see a problem.


Toast_in_the_Machine


Dec 7, 2011, 7:41 PM
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guangzhou wrote:
They already are.

It's amazing to me that Middle Class American's are willing to blame the rich for being successful but penalizing them with higher taxes.

Interesting. Very interesting. "Blame", "successful", "penalize”. Lots of emotional hot button words, yet amazingly devoid of thought. I, frankly, expect better than that. Since I know you are free of the knee jerk Fox / Limbaugh influences I expected at least a reply that contained the briefest of economic arguments. Since you didn’t provide one, and since you, by default, dubbed me the Middle Class American (which I proudly am), allow me to provide at least an attempt at a meaningful response.

Sure, what one man may call a government handout another may call a needed subsidy to a critical segment of the American economy. Sure, what one may call crippling regulation another may call a needed protection of the innocent. Position and perspective do dominate specific activities as being either “right” or “wrong”. However, when one brings a principled view to the issues, one is often able to set aside a party or a dogma or an ideal and see what is good and what is workable.

I will assume that you did not glance at the link I provided. Pity. While it is a starting point for policy recommendations, it is worth, at least in understanding why the “occupy” movement is more popular than the “tea party”. Simply put – since Reagan, the rich have gotten richer. Not just rich in an absolute sense, but in a percentage of overall wealth. Today, to be in the 1% means more than it did when Star Wars figures were a cool new toy. The facts are, as good as we can tell, pointing to a divergence. The rich are getting richer and no one else is. America is slouching towards a banana republic level of wealth distribution. While personal stories of success above ones initial station in life will, hopefully, continue, the cold hard mass of statistics says it will not for most. And that is the risk. The risk of no hope. This is a risk to me and the risk to my fellow Americans.

Part of the Reagan ideal was that if we let the rich have just a little more money, they would, as the great “job creators” “trickle down” the money to the rest of us. At the time, I thought it was bull shit. But hey, sometimes you try things you don’t think will work because you need to try something different. Well, guess what. It didn’t work. Well, actually it did. It helped the rich. The rising tide did not lift everyone, in fact, the tide lifted only the yachts and everyone else was left behind.

Since that time, to assume that it is right and appropriate to put have a tax system says that the more you make, the more you have benefitted from our society, therefore, the more you should pay has been labeled “class warfare” or, to use some of the words you use “blame the rich”. But it isn’t, it is an honest expectation that those who most benefit from our society and the stability, freedom, and economic opportunities that it provides pay more. Not just more in a simple straight line, but more because, as part of our society, they need to pay more than someone else who can’t afford to pay as much. The money is needed for the collective whole of society and the people with a strong disproportion of the money are best able to give up more of it.

Capitalism is the naked belief that it will all work out in the end if we are all wonderfully selfish. But life isn’t that nice, risk doesn’t always mean reward, past performance doesn’t guarantee success, and to go all Star Trek, sometimes the good of the many does outweigh the good of the few. In this case it means more taxes on the “rich”. It isn’t class warfare, envy, socialism or anything beyond setting the scale back to where it should have been in the first place. If you are rich, be happy, suck it up, pay up, and shut the fuck up. Whining about problems of being rich is so pre-divergence awareness.

Oh, and I suspect you aren’t likely to keep exploring issues of wealth and divergence, because I’m guessing you are comfortable in your views and not up to the challenge. Slate is continuing its articles on the creation and the how and why of income disparity in the US. Here is their explanation on why http://www.slate.com/..._so_much_worse_.html

Please, feel free to read. I think the author if this article is mostly pimping a book, but to understand the true flaws one would need to get out of associating ones’ views with one’s class. And “class” is not just last century; it is a concept that is about two centuries gone.


guangzhou


Dec 7, 2011, 9:41 PM
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In reply to:
They already are.

It's amazing to me that Middle Class American's are willing to blame the rich for being successful but penalizing them with higher taxes.

In reply to:
Interesting. Very interesting. "Blame", "successful", "penalize”. Lots of emotional hot button words, yet amazingly devoid of thought. I, frankly, expect better than that. Since I know you are free of the knee jerk Fox / Limbaugh influences I expected at least a reply that contained the briefest of economic arguments. Since you didn’t provide one, and since you, by default, dubbed me the Middle Class American (which I proudly am), allow me to provide at least an attempt at a meaningful response.

I too am a member of the American the middle class, near the bottom actually.

In reply to:
Sure, what one man may call a government handout another may call a needed subsidy to a critical segment of the American economy. Sure, what one may call crippling regulation another may call a needed protection of the innocent. Position and perspective do dominate specific activities as being either “right” or “wrong”. However, when one brings a principled view to the issues, one is often able to set aside a party or a dogma or an ideal and see what is good and what is workable.

Agree with you, it’s all perspective based on what ground we’re currently standing on.

In reply to:
I will assume that you did not glance at the link I provided. Pity. While it is a starting point for policy recommendations, it is worth, at least in understanding why the “occupy” movement is more popular than the “tea party”. Simply put – since Reagan, the rich have gotten richer. Not just rich in an absolute sense, but in a percentage of overall wealth. Today, to be in the 1% means more than it did when Star Wars figures were a cool new toy. The facts are, as good as we can tell, pointing to a divergence. The rich are getting richer and no one else is. America is slouching towards a banana republic level of wealth distribution. While personal stories of success above ones initial station in life will, hopefully, continue, the cold hard mass of statistics says it will not for most. And that is the risk. The risk of no hope. This is a risk to me and the risk to my fellow Americans.

While the rich are getting richer, I don’t agree with the thesis that no-one else is. I do believe that Americans are getting less economically responsible.

The OWM is a bunch of people screaming about how unhappy they are that their portfolio collapsed. They were not complaining when those same vessels they are protesting today were earning them money.

In reply to:
Part of the Reagan ideal was that if we let the rich have just a little more money, they would, as the great “job creators” “trickle down” the money to the rest of us. At the time, I thought it was bull shit. But hey, sometimes you try things you don’t think will work because you need to try something different. Well, guess what. It didn’t work. Well, actually it did. It helped the rich. The rising tide did not lift everyone, in fact, the tide lifted only the yachts and everyone else was left behind.

Reagan didn’t invent the trickle down theory, but generally speaking, it’s more effective than taking from the people who are successful in business and giving it to those who have not done anything to earn expect being unsuccessful.

Without the incentive of making money, fewer people would go out and innovate, invent, and create.

In reply to:
Since that time, to assume that it is right and appropriate to put have a tax system says that the more you make, the more you have benefitted from our society, therefore, the more you should pay has been labeled “class warfare” or, to use some of the words you use “blame the rich”. But it isn’t, it is an honest expectation that those who most benefit from our society and the stability, freedom, and economic opportunities that it provides pay more. Not just more in a simple straight line, but more because, as part of our society, they need to pay more than someone else who can’t afford to pay as much. The money is needed for the collective whole of society and the people with a strong disproportion of the money are best able to give up more of it.

Those who have benefited the most have done so by going out and making things happen. The system is there for everyone, some choose to take risk and make money, others decide to go work for those who took risk by starting businesses and make less money, then complain that the people who own the company make more money than they do while doing nothing.

In reply to:
Capitalism is the naked belief that it will all work out in the end if we are all wonderfully selfish. But life isn’t that nice, risk doesn’t always mean reward, past performance doesn’t guarantee success, and to go all Star Trek, sometimes the good of the many does outweigh the good of the few. In this case it means more taxes on the “rich”. It isn’t class warfare, envy, socialism or anything beyond setting the scale back to where it should have been in the first place. If you are rich, be happy, suck it up, pay up, and shut the fuck up. Whining about problems of being rich is so pre-divergence awareness.

I agree, risk doesn’t always mean reward, past performance doesn’t guarantee success, and the good of many sometimes does outweigh that of the few. Selfish is the belief that those who have earned something or those who own something are required to give it to you because you don’t have it or have less of it.

In reply to:
Oh, and I suspect you aren’t likely to keep exploring issues of wealth and divergence, because I’m guessing you are comfortable in your views and not up to the challenge. Slate is continuing its articles on the creation and the how and why of income disparity in the US. Here is their explanation on why http://www.slate.com/..._so_much_worse_.html

Please, feel free to read. I think the author if this article is mostly pimping a book, but to understand the true flaws one would need to get out of associating ones’ views with one’s class. And “class” is not just last century; it is a concept that is about two centuries gone.

The article supports that the best at their jobs are getting richer for sure. Why shouldn’t they? Those with the most experience and best skills should be getting paid more. If I were recruiting a new person to preform a task within my company and that person had a job doing the same thing for another company, I would entice him with a higher salary and better benefit package. The better you are at doing what you do, the more you should be paid for your skills.

Being the best at something, or better than your competitor is a good thing in my book. I hate that American is teaching people, kids especially, that participation is good enough. Individuals and sport team members now get certificates and medals of completion so they don’t feel bad for losing. This instills an attitude that just trying is good enough, you don’t have to be successful; you’ll get something no matter what.

As for wealth and divergence, I agree, rich people are getting richer. Of course, they have more skills at getting richer and focus their life on it. Me, I don’t care why this is happening or how to reverse the trend by making the rich poorer. Instead, I am working on getting richer myself.

Another words, I plan on making my life financially better by pulling myself up, instead of bringing others down to my level. Instead of complaining about the gap, work on closing it by raising your own financial gains. Stop collecting certificates of completion.


Toast_in_the_Machine


Dec 8, 2011, 4:12 AM
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guangzhou wrote:
Reagan didn’t invent the trickle down theory, but generally speaking, it’s more effective than taking from the people who are successful in business and giving it to those who have not done anything to earn expect being unsuccessful.

Without the incentive of making money, fewer people would go out and innovate, invent, and create.



Those who have benefited the most have done so by going out and making things happen. The system is there for everyone, some choose to take risk and make money, others decide to go work for those who took risk by starting businesses and make less money, then complain that the people who own the company make more money than they do while doing nothing.



I agree, risk doesn’t always mean reward, past performance doesn’t guarantee success, and the good of many sometimes does outweigh that of the few. Selfish is the belief that those who have earned something or those who own something are required to give it to you because you don’t have it or have less of it.

Before I get to some more discussion about how your personal philosophy, which is good, makes for bad policy, I want to stop and say where money would go from any increased taxes on “the rich”: It is to pay off those god damn wars. Period. That isn’t income re-distribution, that isn’t what social distribution of income, nor is it about social policy. It was bad policy to go to war and cut taxes at the same time. We now have a huge IOU to ourselves and we need the money today. Where can we get that money now? We get it from the people who most benefitted from the past ten years: the richest 1% (their income went up, everyone else stayed flat). They benefitted, they pay. If we had seen a significant movement from the middle or lower class of the past ten years in terms of income increase, I would see it as appropriate to increase their taxes. But since we haven’t seen lower / middle incomes increase and we have seen the richest people’s income increase, that is who should pay. That is the tax we are talking about today, as for how to structure taxes for social benefit. That is the next question.

guangzhou wrote:

The article supports that the best at their jobs are getting richer for sure. Why shouldn’t they? Those with the most experience and best skills should be getting paid more. If I were recruiting a new person to preform a task within my company and that person had a job doing the same thing for another company, I would entice him with a higher salary and better benefit package. The better you are at doing what you do, the more you should be paid for your skills.

Being the best at something, or better than your competitor is a good thing in my book. I hate that American is teaching people, kids especially, that participation is good enough. Individuals and sport team members now get certificates and medals of completion so they don’t feel bad for losing. This instills an attitude that just trying is good enough, you don’t have to be successful; you’ll get something no matter what.

As for wealth and divergence, I agree, rich people are getting richer. Of course, they have more skills at getting richer and focus their life on it. Me, I don’t care why this is happening or how to reverse the trend by making the rich poorer. Instead, I am working on getting richer myself.

Another words, I plan on making my life financially better by pulling myself up, instead of bringing others down to my level. Instead of complaining about the gap, work on closing it by raising your own financial gains. Stop collecting certificates of completion.

I too am trying continually to bring myself up (my site is still about three quarters setup – http://www.its-on-gear.com – but pimping that is for another day). I too am a fan of competition, but your take on participation medals is 100% backwards. See, it goes to the theme of the article that you seem to have missed. It isn’t just that those with more skills are getting richer; it is that with the flattening of the earth, the small distinction between “very, very good” and “excellent” creates disproportionately large rewards. Those kids whose parents obsess over their “talent” and spend all of their effort at very early ages developing it, those kids are going to be OK. They will likely be mentally effed up, but financially they will be OK.

Let’s take the next generation of pro climbers. The next pro climbers won’t come from someone who just happened to meet someone else in high school that climbed, and they go out climbing and fall in love and do it obsessively until they are the very best. No, the next best of the best will come out of one of the thousands of gyms with tens of thousands of kids from all over the globe who start at stunningly early ages who have been training their entire lives to be the best climber. Out of that pool of competition, someone will emerge the best. They will be far better than anyone of earlier generations because they will have been climbing more, with better coaching, for far longer by the time they hit high school than the previous generation did in their entire life. That person may be only marginally better than the next best person of their age, but because of the reach of technology and information they will be far better known and therefore far better compensated.

This trend is the same for climbers as it is for other sports, as it is for musicians, as it is for business people, as it is for every profession. Only those kids who start very early and dedicate their entire lives to it will get the huge rewards for being the best. Second place has really become first loser. Think of it this way: my son is 10 and an OK climber. In a way, his window of opportunity to become a pro climber has passed him by. There are already, in all likelihood, too many kids climbing so much harder than he is at his age that he should not set a goal to be a pro climber. His life doesn’t contain enough hours to train enough to catch up to the kids who are already better, at age 10, than he is. Forget regrets at 40, or even post high school, middle school is the new time to regret the choices you have made in life. If you need a story that tells this trend, try to read this without barfing in your mouth: http://www.nytimes.com/....html?pagewanted=all

It is this trend in the market with a “winner take all” attitude that is creating rifts in our social fabric. While the individual goal (to be the best) needs to be cultivated, it is creating an overall effect of a collection highly segmented competitions each with extremely high barriers to entry. Liberal Arts is dead if you want to be highly successful.

Please note, I’m not saying that competition is bad, or that winning is bad, nor even that my son cries himself to bed each night because he won’t be a pro climber (he doesn’t want to). I’m pointing to the emerging economic trends, trends that say that American kids aren’t competing against their neighbors, or the kids down the street, or even kids within their own state. Kids today are competing against kids from all over the world, geography is becoming less and less a protector of mediocrity. (Hence why unions are even more doomed, but that is another rant.)

But, and here is the big butt, what about all of the other kids who wanted to be a pro climber, spent their youth on climbing feeding teams, spent all of their time on climbing (and therefore not on studying engineering) and yet blew out their tendons and were never able to climb again? What about those people that fail at Plan A? With every other job getting an equally higher and higher barrier to entry, when plan A fails, where can they go for Plan B? If we don’t allow for people to fail and yet not lose everything, then society becomes even more polarized. We need to have natural limits on the range of success just as we should have natural limits on the range of failure. We will always have a bell curve of success, the question is how steep is the drop off. I can explain why this is bad, but I’ll, for now, assume you get why a society based on only extreme success or total failure would be very bad.

What is the best way to ensure that there isn’t a huge drop between first place and second place? Yup, taxes. Regulating the extremes of success by removing some of the extremes of the rewards helps all of us. It isn’t about taking away from people (oh crap now I sound like a religious parent about to beat their kid), it is about the rules of society as a whole. Taxes are the environmental regulations of social policy – they prevent extreme behavior from succeeding to the detriment of all. And like environmental regulations, people complain about them, but in the end, it doesn’t alter the winners and losers within a segment and the society benefits from them.

Sure you can have a philosophy that says “I want to be the best” and “I want to get the rewards for my actions”, but to create social policy you need to look outside of what motivates an individual and instead study what impact rules have to society. And that study needs to be fact based, not based on ideals. If you do approach public policy with a philosophical approach, your predictions of the results is likely to be wrong. For some insight into why having an agenda doesn’t help you see the future, here is a fun article from a few years back: http://www.newyorker.com/...05/051205crbo_books1


scrapedape


Dec 8, 2011, 5:19 AM
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Interesting perspective, TITM, and well-argued.

I've never before thought about the potential for extremely high rewards at the tail of the distribution to attract too many people, most of whom will ultimately not make it. There is definitely an economics analogy here, as you end up with an over-provision of certain skills, a sort of stranded investment.

My own exposure to this is that I see a lot of other students around here going off to careers in banking and management consulting because that's where the big money is. It worries me because if our country's brightest minds are engineering new financial instruments instead of doing actual engineering work , what is going to happen to actual engineering as a field?


Allfred


Dec 8, 2011, 5:27 AM
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guangzhou wrote:
Toast_in_the_Machine wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
That's because the data use is just income for a job based on tax returns. So, Again, I still believe that the top 1% of America os earning substantially more.

Tax returns are accurate. One may find a bias at the low end for cash only transactions and at the high end for tax shelters, but tax returns are the most accurate method we have, for now, for insight on wealth.
http://www2.ucsc.edu/...ca/power/wealth.html

guangzhou wrote:
People here keep saying the top needs to may more taxes, but the same data that identifies the top 1% as 350,000 or more year says that the top 1% pay approximately 40% of America's federal taxes. Hardly seems like they should be paying more in my book.

If the top 1% own 40% of all nations net worth, shouldn't they pay at least 40% of the taxes?

They already are.

It's amazing to me that Middle Class American's are willing to blame the rich for being successful but penalizing them with higher taxes.

you're a dipshit. Look how the rich have been penalized since the great depression.




What happened to our national debt since Reagan cut those taxes...


There rising tide is NOT lifting all boats


You don't balance the books by cutting taxes while spending more on two wars.



OH NOES!



guangzhou


Dec 8, 2011, 5:33 AM
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Excellent post and well argued. Although I don't agree that the rich have all benefited from the war and that the taxes will actually be used to pay for the war.

I also think that a big pay discrepancy between best and second best is fine. If the business, the field, or the industry is willing to pay for that level of talent and the talent is good at negotiating what they get all the better. I am willing to pay much more for a product I find to be the best versus second best in many cases. In the world of business, second place is often first place loser.


I will reply a bit more next time, for now, I am going to a workout in by climbing a few of my gym's routes. Do some stretching, than walk the dogs. All of which are far more important to me than this internet conversation. (A good conversation) I think speaking face to face would make this an excellent conversation, but on a forum, well enough said.

An excellent post with lots of material for sure. Much which I don't agree with, but I can understand your view.


petsfed


Dec 8, 2011, 6:58 AM
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scrapedape wrote:
My own exposure to this is that I see a lot of other students around here going off to careers in banking and management consulting because that's where the big money is. It worries me because if our country's brightest minds are engineering new financial instruments instead of doing actual engineering work , what is going to happen to actual engineering as a field?

Interesting but true, a good fraction of the best and brightest in physics end up working on market simulations because they have a lot of background in non-linear systems. This is compounded by the fact that overseas labs (in China, mostly) are able to produce better research at lower cost than in the states. We are losing the economic tech war because of our unceasing desire to grow the bottom line.

I don't know how to get the majority back in the we're-all-in-this-together frame of mind, but it seems like if the rich paid more taxes, they'd have a stronger interest in how that money gets spent, and maybe use their considerable lobbying power to make the world a better place, not simply make their portfolios larger.


atg200


Dec 8, 2011, 8:27 AM
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Toast_in_the_Machine


Dec 8, 2011, 8:49 AM
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Allfred wrote:
What happened to our national debt since Reagan cut those taxes...


There rising tide is NOT lifting all boats
[image]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v474/autorank/001/income5.jpg[/image]

You don't balance the books by cutting taxes while spending more on two wars.



OH NOES!
[image]http://newsjunkiepost.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/Historical-Perspective-on-Top-Tax-Rate.jpg[/image]

Chart #1 shows debt as a percentage of GDP went down under Clinton but chart two shows Billy boy added 1.6 trillion. While both could be correct, the charts seem to contradict each other.


Allfred


Dec 8, 2011, 9:34 AM
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Toast_in_the_Machine wrote:
Allfred wrote:
What happened to our national debt since Reagan cut those taxes...
[image]http://bloggingblue.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/US_Federal_Debt_as_Percent_of_GDP_by_President.jpg[/image]

There rising tide is NOT lifting all boats
[image]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v474/autorank/001/income5.jpg[/image]

You don't balance the books by cutting taxes while spending more on two wars.
[image]http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-LS-LLCtY1-4/Tib7QGFC8BI/AAAAAAAABgk/Nd6TeY-1YK4/s1600/debtchart.gif[/image]


OH NOES!
[image]http://newsjunkiepost.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/Historical-Perspective-on-Top-Tax-Rate.jpg[/image]

Chart #1 shows debt as a percentage of GDP went down under Clinton but chart two shows Billy boy added 1.6 trillion. While both could be correct, the charts seem to contradict each other.

From what I understand the pie chart is inflation adjusted total dollars. GDP grew under Clinton as well, so there's that.

The real point of the GDP chart is the slopes and comparing them to the change in tax rates.


Toast_in_the_Machine


Dec 8, 2011, 10:18 AM
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Allfred wrote:
Toast_in_the_Machine wrote:
Allfred wrote:
What happened to our national debt since Reagan cut those taxes...
[image]http://bloggingblue.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/US_Federal_Debt_as_Percent_of_GDP_by_President.jpg[/image]

There rising tide is NOT lifting all boats
[image]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v474/autorank/001/income5.jpg[/image]

You don't balance the books by cutting taxes while spending more on two wars.
[image]http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-LS-LLCtY1-4/Tib7QGFC8BI/AAAAAAAABgk/Nd6TeY-1YK4/s1600/debtchart.gif[/image]


OH NOES!
[image]http://newsjunkiepost.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/Historical-Perspective-on-Top-Tax-Rate.jpg[/image]

Chart #1 shows debt as a percentage of GDP went down under Clinton but chart two shows Billy boy added 1.6 trillion. While both could be correct, the charts seem to contradict each other.

From what I understand the pie chart is inflation adjusted total dollars. GDP grew under Clinton as well, so there's that.

The real point of the GDP chart is the slopes and comparing them to the change in tax rates.

As I thought I might have maybe remembered. The chart for Slick Willy should have 0.

http://www.factcheck.org/...ficit-under-clinton/

In reply to:
Q: During the Clinton administration was the federal budget balanced? Was the federal deficit erased?

A: Yes to both questions, whether you count Social Security or not.


Allfred


Dec 9, 2011, 5:26 AM
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Toast_in_the_Machine wrote:

As I thought I might have maybe remembered. The chart for Slick Willy should have 0.

http://www.factcheck.org/...ficit-under-clinton/

In reply to:
Q: During the Clinton administration was the federal budget balanced? Was the federal deficit erased?

A: Yes to both questions, whether you count Social Security or not.

interesting. I suspect (wild guess on my part) this part to be where the difference is in the pie chart.
In reply to:
Keep in mind that fiscal years begin Oct. 1, so the first year that can be counted as a Clinton year is fiscal 1994. The appropriations bills for fiscal years 1990 through 1993 were signed by Bill Clinton’s predecessor, George H.W. Bush.


Partner cracklover


Dec 9, 2011, 9:42 AM
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Great post Andrew. This in particular:

atg200 wrote:
high marginal rates encourage business reinvestment, which creates jobs and growth.

I believe even Milton Friedman, in who's name this extreme Reaganomics agenda is pushed by the current Republican Congress, would completely disavow it; he would name it for the short-sighted monetary grab by the elite, at the expense of the economy as a whole, that it really is.

GO

edited for clarity


(This post was edited by cracklover on Dec 9, 2011, 9:45 AM)


scrapedape


Dec 9, 2011, 11:25 AM
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cracklover wrote:

edited for clarity

Keep trying.


Partner cracklover


Dec 9, 2011, 12:59 PM
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scrapedape wrote:
cracklover wrote:

edited for clarity

Keep trying.

Um... I'm all for snarky comments, this being the soap box forum and all, but... what in particular didn't make sense?

I mean, if you're not already passingly familiar with the work of Friedman, with Reaganomics, or with the current Republican congress, my post won't make much sense. But if that's the case, then many other things outside of your bubble probably baffle you on a daily basis. Just consider my post to be among "dem strange things people say sumtimes".

GO


Partner cracklover


Dec 9, 2011, 1:04 PM
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NPR had a funny segment this morning. They tried to find a small business owner who would tell them that the taxes on the very rich which Obama is trying to push through would hurt the growth of their business.

<crickets>

They did find some small business owners who said they'd be impacted by those tax hikes, but they all said they'd have zero impact on their potential hiring decisions.

GO


dr_feelgood


Dec 9, 2011, 1:14 PM
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http://www.theonion.com/...rs-found-in-r,26490/

In reply to:
WASHINGTON—A team of leading archaeologists announced Monday they had uncovered the remains of an ancient job-creating race that, at the peak of its civilization, may have provided occupations for hundreds of thousands of humans in the American Northeast and Midwest.

According to researchers, these long- forgotten people once flourished between western New York state and Illinois, erecting highly distinctive steel and brick structures wherever they went, including many buildings thought to have held hundreds of paid workers at a time.


scrapedape


Dec 9, 2011, 2:02 PM
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cracklover wrote:
Great post Andrew. This in particular:

atg200 wrote:
high marginal rates encourage business reinvestment, which creates jobs and growth.

I believe even Milton Friedman, in who's name this extreme Reaganomics agenda is pushed by the current Republican Congress, would completely disavow it; he would name it for the short-sighted monetary grab by the elite, at the expense of the economy as a whole, that it really is.

GO

edited for clarity

Ok, you wrote who's instead of whose. That's just a pet peeve of mine and doesn't really impair clarity.

It's not entirely clear what the "it" at the end of your first clause is referring to: Congress or the agenda.

Your comment was really just not very clearly worded. That's all. And the lack of clarity has nothing to do with the substance, as far as I can tell.


camhead


Dec 9, 2011, 2:56 PM
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dr_feelgood wrote:
http://www.theonion.com/...rs-found-in-r,26490/

In reply to:
WASHINGTON—A team of leading archaeologists announced Monday they had uncovered the remains of an ancient job-creating race that, at the peak of its civilization, may have provided occupations for hundreds of thousands of humans in the American Northeast and Midwest.

According to researchers, these long- forgotten people once flourished between western New York state and Illinois, erecting highly distinctive steel and brick structures wherever they went, including many buildings thought to have held hundreds of paid workers at a time.

If we're quoting relevant Onion articles...

In reply to:
HAZELWOOD, MO—Twenty-six years after Ronald Reagan first set his controversial fiscal policies into motion, the deceased president's massive tax cuts for the ultrarich at last trickled all the way down to deliver their bounty, in the form of a $10 bonus, to Hazelwood, MO car-wash attendant Frank Kellener...

Kellener, who has cared for his schizophrenic sister ever since her federally funded mental institution was closed in 1984, said that he plans to donate the full $10 to the Republican presidential candidate who best embodies Reagan's legacy.


Partner cracklover


Dec 9, 2011, 3:25 PM
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scrapedape wrote:
cracklover wrote:
Great post Andrew. This in particular:

atg200 wrote:
high marginal rates encourage business reinvestment, which creates jobs and growth.

I believe even Milton Friedman, in who's name this extreme Reaganomics agenda is pushed by the current Republican Congress, would completely disavow it; he would name it for the short-sighted monetary grab by the elite, at the expense of the economy as a whole, that it really is.

GO

edited for clarity

Ok, you wrote who's instead of whose. That's just a pet peeve of mine and doesn't really impair clarity.

Oh, interesting! I was unaware of that rule. Or rather, I knew about it for things like "it's" vs. "its", but not in this case. Thanks!

As for the rest - clarity is in the eye of the reader, so thanks for the feedback.

Cheers,

GO


(This post was edited by cracklover on Dec 9, 2011, 3:25 PM)


yanqui


Dec 10, 2011, 3:36 PM
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The funny thing about this is that criteria "income of the top 1%" really doesn't give a very good picture of the massive disparity in wealth that occurs in the US today. The super-rich (the group whose wealth has grown astronomically in past few decades) is more like the top .01% or even the top .001%.

Here's one possible comparison for income (net worth makes things look even worse): half of all American workers had incomes less than $26,400 in 2010. Meanwhile, the 400 highest earning taxpayers had average incomes of $345,000,000 (2007 data). That's a lot of zeros. One way to compare these two incomes is to see that the guy who made $26,400 would have to work more than 13,000 years in order to bring home as much money as the super-rich dude earned in one year. I don't even know what was going on in the world 13,000 years ago. Another way to compare these is to imagine that the super-rich dude is getting an hourly wage, a salary, so to speak (working 40 hours a week, 50 weeks a year - I'm giving him a couple weeks vacation). In that case the super-rich guy only has to work 9 minutes to make the yearly mean salary in the US. Yep that's right: 9 minutes.


(This post was edited by yanqui on Dec 10, 2011, 3:42 PM)


veganclimber


Dec 10, 2011, 3:43 PM
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yanqui wrote:
The funny thing about this is that criteria "income of the top 1%" really doesn't give a very good picture of the massive disparity in wealth that occurs in the US today. The super-rich (the group whose wealth has grown astronomically in past few decades) is more like the top .01% or even the top .001%.

Here's one possible comparison for income (net worth makes the disparity look even worse): half of all American workers had incomes less than $26,400 in 2010. Meanwhile, the 400 highest earning taxpayers had average incomes of $345,000,000 (2007 data). That's a lot of zeros. One way to compare these two incomes is to see that the guy who made $26,400 would have to work more than 13,000 years in order to bring home as much money as the super-rich dude earned in one year. What was even going on in the world 13,000 years ago? Another way to compare these is to imagine that the super-rich dude is getting an hourly wage, a salary, so to speak (working 40 hours a week, 50 weeks a year - I'm giving him a couple weeks vacation). In that case the super-rich guy only has to work 9 minutes to make the yearly mean salary in the US. Yep that´s right: 9 minutes.

What's really amazing is that a lot of those $26,000/year people think the system is unfair to those super rich dudes. You have to give the republicans some credit. They are able to pull off some really amazing shit sometimes.


guangzhou


Dec 10, 2011, 5:19 PM
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yanqui wrote:
The funny thing about this is that criteria "income of the top 1%" really doesn't give a very good picture of the massive disparity in wealth that occurs in the US today. The super-rich (the group whose wealth has grown astronomically in past few decades) is more like the top .01% or even the top .001%.

Here's one possible comparison for income (net worth makes things look even worse): half of all American workers had incomes less than $26,400 in 2010. Meanwhile, the 400 highest earning taxpayers had average incomes of $345,000,000 (2007 data). That's a lot of zeros. One way to compare these two incomes is to see that the guy who made $26,400 would have to work more than 13,000 years in order to bring home as much money as the super-rich dude earned in one year. I don't even know what was going on in the world 13,000 years ago. Another way to compare these is to imagine that the super-rich dude is getting an hourly wage, a salary, so to speak (working 40 hours a week, 50 weeks a year - I'm giving him a couple weeks vacation). In that case the super-rich guy only has to work 9 minutes to make the yearly mean salary in the US. Yep that's right: 9 minutes.

Again, I see nothing wrong with this. If someone, including some of you here, could figure out how to make 26,000 USD every nine minute, a lot would. Takes a long time and a lot of knowledge/effort to get yourself into that situation.


yanqui


Dec 11, 2011, 4:59 AM
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guangzhou wrote:
yanqui wrote:
The funny thing about this is that criteria "income of the top 1%" really doesn't give a very good picture of the massive disparity in wealth that occurs in the US today. The super-rich (the group whose wealth has grown astronomically in past few decades) is more like the top .01% or even the top .001%.

Here's one possible comparison for income (net worth makes things look even worse): half of all American workers had incomes less than $26,400 in 2010. Meanwhile, the 400 highest earning taxpayers had average incomes of $345,000,000 (2007 data). That's a lot of zeros. One way to compare these two incomes is to see that the guy who made $26,400 would have to work more than 13,000 years in order to bring home as much money as the super-rich dude earned in one year. I don't even know what was going on in the world 13,000 years ago. Another way to compare these is to imagine that the super-rich dude is getting an hourly wage, a salary, so to speak (working 40 hours a week, 50 weeks a year - I'm giving him a couple weeks vacation). In that case the super-rich guy only has to work 9 minutes to make the yearly mean salary in the US. Yep that's right: 9 minutes.

Again, I see nothing wrong with this. If someone, including some of you here, could figure out how to make 26,000 USD every nine minute, a lot would. Takes a long time and a lot of knowledge/effort to get yourself into that situation.

It also helps, for example, to be born into (or marry into) the Walton family. And after all Walmart, not to mention leveraged buyouts and hedge funds, have done so much to make the US a better place for everyone.

(And here I was worried someone would catch I said "mean" salary when I should have said "median").


(This post was edited by yanqui on Dec 11, 2011, 5:02 AM)


ubu


Dec 11, 2011, 5:20 AM
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yanqui wrote:
(And here I was worried someone would catch I said "mean" salary when I should have said "median").

I thought you meant it in the sense of "Wow, you make $26,400? That's one mean salary!" Tongue


camhead


Dec 11, 2011, 8:03 AM
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guangzhou wrote:
yanqui wrote:
The funny thing about this is that criteria "income of the top 1%" really doesn't give a very good picture of the massive disparity in wealth that occurs in the US today. The super-rich (the group whose wealth has grown astronomically in past few decades) is more like the top .01% or even the top .001%.

Here's one possible comparison for income (net worth makes things look even worse): half of all American workers had incomes less than $26,400 in 2010. Meanwhile, the 400 highest earning taxpayers had average incomes of $345,000,000 (2007 data). That's a lot of zeros. One way to compare these two incomes is to see that the guy who made $26,400 would have to work more than 13,000 years in order to bring home as much money as the super-rich dude earned in one year. I don't even know what was going on in the world 13,000 years ago. Another way to compare these is to imagine that the super-rich dude is getting an hourly wage, a salary, so to speak (working 40 hours a week, 50 weeks a year - I'm giving him a couple weeks vacation). In that case the super-rich guy only has to work 9 minutes to make the yearly mean salary in the US. Yep that's right: 9 minutes.

Again, I see nothing wrong with this. If someone, including some of you here, could figure out how to make 26,000 USD every nine minute, a lot would. Takes a long time and a lot of knowledge/effort to get yourself into that situation.

Do you honestly think that the top 400 earners in the US are over 13,000 times smarter and hard working than the average American? That they really are that much more naturally gifted?


veganclimber


Dec 11, 2011, 12:05 PM
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Here is another way to look at it:
http://www.politifact.com/...s-have-more-wealth-/

In reply to:
"Right now, this afternoon, just 400 Americans -- 400 -- have more wealth than half of all Americans combined," Moore avowed to tens of thousands of protesters.

"Let me say that again. And please, someone in the mainstream media, just repeat this fact once; we’re not greedy, we’ll be happy to hear it just once.

"Four hundred obscenely wealthy individuals, 400 little Mubaraks -- most of whom benefited in some way from the multi-trillion-dollar taxpayer bailout of 2008 -- now have more cash, stock and property than the assets of 155 million Americans combined."

I guess there is some debate about the exact numbers, but it does seem clear that if you compare the wealth of these 400 to the bottom 155 million, the numbers are comparable.


dan2see


Dec 11, 2011, 12:21 PM
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guangzhou wrote:
yanqui wrote:
The funny thing about this is that criteria "income of the top 1%" really doesn't give a very good picture of the massive disparity in wealth that occurs in the US today. The super-rich (the group whose wealth has grown astronomically in past few decades) is more like the top .01% or even the top .001%.

Here's one possible comparison for income (net worth makes things look even worse): half of all American workers had incomes less than $26,400 in 2010. Meanwhile, the 400 highest earning taxpayers had average incomes of $345,000,000 (2007 data). That's a lot of zeros. One way to compare these two incomes is to see that the guy who made $26,400 would have to work more than 13,000 years in order to bring home as much money as the super-rich dude earned in one year. I don't even know what was going on in the world 13,000 years ago. Another way to compare these is to imagine that the super-rich dude is getting an hourly wage, a salary, so to speak (working 40 hours a week, 50 weeks a year - I'm giving him a couple weeks vacation). In that case the super-rich guy only has to work 9 minutes to make the yearly mean salary in the US. Yep that's right: 9 minutes.

Again, I see nothing wrong with this. If someone, including some of you here, could figure out how to make 26,000 USD every nine minute, a lot would. Takes a long time and a lot of knowledge/effort to get yourself into that situation.

You don't have to see anything wrong -- you're not here.

As for that "knowledge and effort" phrase -- ha ha good one!

You seem to be telling us that anybody can make lots of money, if they try and keep trying. GZ, I think you have to awfully arrogant say these things.


guangzhou


Dec 11, 2011, 6:00 PM
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dan2see wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
yanqui wrote:
The funny thing about this is that criteria "income of the top 1%" really doesn't give a very good picture of the massive disparity in wealth that occurs in the US today. The super-rich (the group whose wealth has grown astronomically in past few decades) is more like the top .01% or even the top .001%.

Here's one possible comparison for income (net worth makes things look even worse): half of all American workers had incomes less than $26,400 in 2010. Meanwhile, the 400 highest earning taxpayers had average incomes of $345,000,000 (2007 data). That's a lot of zeros. One way to compare these two incomes is to see that the guy who made $26,400 would have to work more than 13,000 years in order to bring home as much money as the super-rich dude earned in one year. I don't even know what was going on in the world 13,000 years ago. Another way to compare these is to imagine that the super-rich dude is getting an hourly wage, a salary, so to speak (working 40 hours a week, 50 weeks a year - I'm giving him a couple weeks vacation). In that case the super-rich guy only has to work 9 minutes to make the yearly mean salary in the US. Yep that's right: 9 minutes.

Again, I see nothing wrong with this. If someone, including some of you here, could figure out how to make 26,000 USD every nine minute, a lot would. Takes a long time and a lot of knowledge/effort to get yourself into that situation.

You don't have to see anything wrong -- you're not here.

As for that "knowledge and effort" phrase -- ha ha good one!

You seem to be telling us that anybody can make lots of money, if they try and keep trying. GZ, I think you have to awfully arrogant say these things.

I am not in America, but I am American.

I spend quite a bit of time there too, but I decided to go where I saw a good opportunity instead of complaining about lack of opportunities where I was living in Tennessee. We live in a Global Economy, it's ok to be mobile. Leave you home-town, city, state, or country and look around, you'll be surprised at what you found out there. Look at the big earners, that's exactly what they did, they looked around for opportunities and invested. (time or money)

My personal goal. Within ten years, I'll be semi-retired either in Southern France or the United States if my ten year plan works out.

If the risk I am taking today doesn't workout, I'll be working till I die and I accept that. It's a decision I made and I can live with the consequences although I hope to live with the rewards.

As for arrogant, I could be called arrogant for my comments if I were rich, but this year I will barely make 20,000 USD. (Worked half a year, the other half dedicated to my start-up.) My best year ever income wise was 40,000, so I never have made big money in reality. I have managed to save between 25 and 35% of my salary every year in case I lost my job or found a worth while investment/cause.

My view that anyone can be successful isn't arrogant, it's a reality. The first step is to believe and build some self confidence. Learn something about personal finances and apply them to your personal life. Plenty of easy to access resources in the United States for sure.

My safety net, I don't have one. I now have less than 6000 USD in the bank and all my money invested my new business.

As to the question above about how much smarter or better those top earners are. They convince someone they were worth what they earn. That means they have strong skills in the industry they work in, and they have good negotiation skills too.

If they make their money willing and dealing, or trading stock, they are smart enough to look at trends, buy and sell accordingly.

The Walmart bashing, Walmart makes money by providing a service/product people are interested in and willing to pay. If people honestly didn't like Walmart like so many here say they don't, Walmart would be out of business.

Walmart is a great example of a business model that finds a product people are willing to buy for a price-point they are willing to pay.

When I travel in America, I frequent K-mart, Target, or Walmart of ordinary everyday items. I buy my shoes from Payless shoes. That's how I lived within my income level and managed to save money as a school teacher over the years.

Walmart has made my Annual 8 week climbing road trip much more affordable for sure.

The people who went broke in this crisis aren't broke because they were not making enough money, they were broke because they were spending to much of what they earned to begin with. They kept upgrading to newer models of phones, computers, leased car instead of buying, and bought more house than they could afford. They all thought the salary would continue to rise and put saving money off to tomorrow.

I remember commenting on a climber's on-sigth of a 5.13c to a guy I was climbing with once. He responded with the classic, that guy is just chasing numbers, I'm not interested in being that good, I rather just enjoy my climbing. My partner then got frustrated when he fell on a 5.10. To me, it's the same syndrome, when the rich get rich doing what they do, middle class and poor say they are just chasing money. I reply with, you're not willing to commit yourself to what it takes to earn what they do. Sort of like the guy climbing 5.10 is not willing to commit himself to what it takes to climb 5.13.


(This post was edited by guangzhou on Dec 11, 2011, 6:16 PM)


dan2see


Dec 11, 2011, 6:51 PM
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guangzhou wrote:
...
I remember commenting on a climber's on-sigth of a 5.13c to a guy I was climbing with once. He responded with the classic, that guy is just chasing numbers, I'm not interested in being that good, I rather just enjoy my climbing. My partner then got frustrated when he fell on a 5.10. To me, it's the same syndrome, when the rich get rich doing what they do, middle class and poor say they are just chasing money. I reply with, you're not willing to commit yourself to what it takes to earn what they do. Sort of like the guy climbing 5.10 is not willing to commit himself to what it takes to climb 5.13.


Ha ha! GZ, good one!

Wow! Did you go to some special school to learn that stuff?


yanqui


Dec 12, 2011, 4:55 AM
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dan2see wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
...
I remember commenting on a climber's on-sigth of a 5.13c to a guy I was climbing with once. He responded with the classic, that guy is just chasing numbers, I'm not interested in being that good, I rather just enjoy my climbing. My partner then got frustrated when he fell on a 5.10. To me, it's the same syndrome, when the rich get rich doing what they do, middle class and poor say they are just chasing money. I reply with, you're not willing to commit yourself to what it takes to earn what they do. Sort of like the guy climbing 5.10 is not willing to commit himself to what it takes to climb 5.13.


Ha ha! GZ, good one!

Wow! Did you go to some special school to learn that stuff?

The Koch Brothers School of Sycophancy?


guangzhou


Dec 13, 2011, 5:49 PM
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yanqui wrote:
dan2see wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
...
I remember commenting on a climber's on-sigth of a 5.13c to a guy I was climbing with once. He responded with the classic, that guy is just chasing numbers, I'm not interested in being that good, I rather just enjoy my climbing. My partner then got frustrated when he fell on a 5.10. To me, it's the same syndrome, when the rich get rich doing what they do, middle class and poor say they are just chasing money. I reply with, you're not willing to commit yourself to what it takes to earn what they do. Sort of like the guy climbing 5.10 is not willing to commit himself to what it takes to climb 5.13.


Ha ha! GZ, good one!

Wow! Did you go to some special school to learn that stuff?

The Koch Brothers School of Sycophancy?

What part don't you agree with?

learned it via personal observations in the climbing world. Want to know how attainable 5.13 is with a full time job and family commitment, visit Europe for awhile and see what the serious recreational climbers are climbing.

Visit Southern Thailand, Krabi, next Christmas and see what the climbers there are climbing. They spend their Christmas break there because they have full-time careers.

So again, the step is to actually believe you can climb 5.13. The second and almost as hard step is to commit.


lena_chita
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Dec 14, 2011, 5:21 AM
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guangzhou wrote:
yanqui wrote:
dan2see wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
...
I remember commenting on a climber's on-sigth of a 5.13c to a guy I was climbing with once. He responded with the classic, that guy is just chasing numbers, I'm not interested in being that good, I rather just enjoy my climbing. My partner then got frustrated when he fell on a 5.10. To me, it's the same syndrome, when the rich get rich doing what they do, middle class and poor say they are just chasing money. I reply with, you're not willing to commit yourself to what it takes to earn what they do. Sort of like the guy climbing 5.10 is not willing to commit himself to what it takes to climb 5.13.


Ha ha! GZ, good one!

Wow! Did you go to some special school to learn that stuff?

The Koch Brothers School of Sycophancy?

What part don't you agree with?

learned it via personal observations in the climbing world. Want to know how attainable 5.13 is with a full time job and family commitment, visit Europe for awhile and see what the serious recreational climbers are climbing.

Visit Southern Thailand, Krabi, next Christmas and see what the climbers there are climbing. They spend their Christmas break there because they have full-time careers.

So again, the step is to actually believe you can climb 5.13. The second and almost as hard step is to commit.


Yes, 5.13 is attainable for many, with enough determination.

But to put it in the context of this thread, don't talk about how many CLIMBERS can climb 5.13. Talk about how many PEOPLE-- general population-- can climb 5.13. And then make a claim that everyone could-- still reasonable?


You seem to run with the assumption that everyone can and should get rich. Even assuming that everyone could, which no one but you seems to believe, where would this world be, if everyone was an investment banker?

The worlds needs garbage collectors and janitors, grocery store clerks and secretaries, musicians and geologists, pizza delivery guys and miners, and on and on and on.

And it makes sense that some occupations require more skills and should get paid proportionately more. And some occupations require people who can invest their money, take risks, make good decisions, and when they create more wealth that way it is a pay-off for the risks they did take and the investment of money and time and skills.

But it doesn't make sense that those who are working full-time in many of the jobs that form the foundation of this society cannot make a decent living on that money.


guangzhou


Dec 14, 2011, 5:33 PM
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In reply to:
I remember commenting on a climber's on-sigth of a 5.13c to a guy I was climbing with once. He responded with the classic, that guy is just chasing numbers, I'm not interested in being that good, I rather just enjoy my climbing. My partner then got frustrated when he fell on a 5.10. To me, it's the same syndrome, when the rich get rich doing what they do, middle class and poor say they are just chasing money. I reply with, you're not willing to commit yourself to what it takes to earn what they do. Sort of like the guy climbing 5.10 is not willing to commit himself to what it takes to climb 5.13.


In reply to:
Ha ha! GZ, good one!

Wow! Did you go to some special school to learn that stuff?

In reply to:
The Koch Brothers School of Sycophancy?

In reply to:
What part don't you agree with?

Learned it via personal observations in the climbing world. Want to know how attainable 5.13 is with a full time job and family commitment, visit Europe for awhile and see what the serious recreational climbers are climbing.

Visit Southern Thailand, Krabi, next Christmas and see what the climbers there are climbing. They spend their Christmas break there because they have full-time careers.

So again, the step is to actually believe you can climb 5.13. The second and almost as hard step is to commit.


In reply to:
Yes, 5.13 is attainable for many, with enough determination.

But to put it in the context of this thread, don't talk about how many CLIMBERS can climb 5.13. Talk about how many PEOPLE-- general population-- can climb 5.13. And then make a claim that everyone could-- still reasonable?

That makes no sense to me. If someone never climbs, of course they can never climb 5.13. Same is also true of people who never take the risk to make big money, or people who make choices that don’t bring them into the big earning sectors. If you’re not willing to risk, nor willing to make some sacrifices, you can’t expect the rewards.


In reply to:
You seem to run with the assumption that everyone can and should get rich. Even assuming that everyone could, which no one but you seems to believe, where would this world be, if everyone was an investment banker?

I don’t believe everyone should get rich. I just believe that those who really want to and dedicate themselves to the task can make it happen. Think back on high school to see how many of your class mates actually applied themselves and how many just decided to get by and get it over with.

In reply to:
The worlds needs garbage collectors and janitors, grocery store clerks and secretaries, musicians and geologists, pizza delivery guys and miners, and on and on and on.

I couldn’t agree more with you. What the world doesn’t need is a janitor complaining about how much a doctor is making.

I personally don’t believe we can ever earn poverty. I’d like to see world hunger end, but poverty will always exist. The people who earn the least within the society you’re looking at are the poverty level.

In reply to:
And it makes sense that some occupations require more skills and should get paid proportionately more. And some occupations require people who can invest their money, take risks, make good decisions, and when they create more wealth that way it is a pay-off for the risks they did take and the investment of money and time and skills.

This is exactly what I have been saying all along.

What doesn’t make sense is that the people who are in those occupations should have to give up the money they earn for making good decision, taking risk, investing wisely, and applying their time and skills.

In reply to:
But it doesn't make sense that those who are working full-time in many of the jobs that form the foundation of this society cannot make a decent living on that money.

Raising how much money is earned at the bottom will not increase their quality of life. For example, if the Untied States raise the minimum wage to 20.00 USD an hour as the minimum federally mandated rate, good at all levels would also rise in cost. Food prices would rise, transportation prices would rise, rents would rise, and everything else. More money in someone pocket isn’t going to make him or her financially independent unless people learn to live within their income level.

Based on your post, I think you were trying to tell me I was wrong, but you seem to support what I have been saying so far.


veganclimber


Dec 14, 2011, 10:58 PM
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guangzhou wrote:
In reply to:
The worlds needs garbage collectors and janitors, grocery store clerks and secretaries, musicians and geologists, pizza delivery guys and miners, and on and on and on.

I couldn’t agree more with you. What the world doesn’t need is a janitor complaining about how much a doctor is making.

I've never heard anybody complain about how much money doctors make. They have to work very hard to get where they are, usually put themselves in significant debt in the process, and, unlike many rich people, are useful to society.

In reply to:
I personally don’t believe we can ever earn poverty. I’d like to see world hunger end, but poverty will always exist. The people who earn the least within the society you’re looking at are the poverty level.

In reply to:
And it makes sense that some occupations require more skills and should get paid proportionately more. And some occupations require people who can invest their money, take risks, make good decisions, and when they create more wealth that way it is a pay-off for the risks they did take and the investment of money and time and skills.

This is exactly what I have been saying all along.

What doesn’t make sense is that the people who are in those occupations should have to give up the money they earn for making good decision, taking risk, investing wisely, and applying their time and skills.

It's called taxes. Everybody pays them.

In reply to:
In reply to:
But it doesn't make sense that those who are working full-time in many of the jobs that form the foundation of this society cannot make a decent living on that money.

Raising how much money is earned at the bottom will not increase their quality of life.

Of course it would.

In reply to:
For example, if the Untied States raise the minimum wage to 20.00 USD an hour as the minimum federally mandated rate, good at all levels would also rise in cost. Food prices would rise, transportation prices would rise, rents would rise, and everything else. More money in someone pocket isn’t going to make him or her financially independent unless people learn to live within their income level.

Based on your post, I think you were trying to tell me I was wrong, but you seem to support what I have been saying so far.

I'm sure most people agree with you to an extent. We all agree that a doctor should make more than a janitor. You just take it to an extreme.


dr_feelgood


Dec 15, 2011, 12:05 AM
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http://www.boston.com/..._poor_or_low_income/

In reply to:
WASHINGTON—Squeezed by rising living costs, a record number of Americans -- nearly 1 in 2 -- have fallen into poverty or are scraping by on earnings that classify them as low income. The latest census data depict a middle class that's shrinking as unemployment stays high and the government's safety net frays. The new numbers follow years of stagnating wages for the middle class that have hurt millions of workers and families.

Anyone can climb 5.13. frsrsly


guangzhou


Dec 15, 2011, 1:40 AM
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veganclimber wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
In reply to:
The worlds needs garbage collectors and janitors, grocery store clerks and secretaries, musicians and geologists, pizza delivery guys and miners, and on and on and on.

I couldn’t agree more with you. What the world doesn’t need is a janitor complaining about how much a doctor is making.

I've never heard anybody complain about how much money doctors make. They have to work very hard to get where they are, usually put themselves in significant debt in the process, and, unlike many rich people, are useful to society.

In reply to:
I personally don’t believe we can ever earn poverty. I’d like to see world hunger end, but poverty will always exist. The people who earn the least within the society you’re looking at are the poverty level.

In reply to:
And it makes sense that some occupations require more skills and should get paid proportionately more. And some occupations require people who can invest their money, take risks, make good decisions, and when they create more wealth that way it is a pay-off for the risks they did take and the investment of money and time and skills.

This is exactly what I have been saying all along.

What doesn’t make sense is that the people who are in those occupations should have to give up the money they earn for making good decision, taking risk, investing wisely, and applying their time and skills.

It's called taxes. Everybody pays them.

In reply to:
In reply to:
But it doesn't make sense that those who are working full-time in many of the jobs that form the foundation of this society cannot make a decent living on that money.

Raising how much money is earned at the bottom will not increase their quality of life.

Of course it would.

In reply to:
For example, if the Untied States raise the minimum wage to 20.00 USD an hour as the minimum federally mandated rate, good at all levels would also rise in cost. Food prices would rise, transportation prices would rise, rents would rise, and everything else. More money in someone pocket isn’t going to make him or her financially independent unless people learn to live within their income level.

Based on your post, I think you were trying to tell me I was wrong, but you seem to support what I have been saying so far.

I'm sure most people agree with you to an extent. We all agree that a doctor should make more than a janitor. You just take it to an extreme.

Not sure what you mean by I take it to an extreme. High earning doctors are part of the 1% defined by the guys on this site.

I tend to think the people here are taking it to extremes and seeing the issue as black and white, when in reality is much more complicated.


guangzhou


Dec 15, 2011, 1:42 AM
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dr_feelgood wrote:
http://www.boston.com/..._poor_or_low_income/

In reply to:
WASHINGTON—Squeezed by rising living costs, a record number of Americans -- nearly 1 in 2 -- have fallen into poverty or are scraping by on earnings that classify them as low income. The latest census data depict a middle class that's shrinking as unemployment stays high and the government's safety net frays. The new numbers follow years of stagnating wages for the middle class that have hurt millions of workers and families.

Anyone can climb 5.13. frsrsly

Any climber dedicated to the task and willing to make the necessary sacrifices.


ubu


Dec 15, 2011, 4:57 AM
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guangzhou wrote:
veganclimber wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
In reply to:
The worlds needs garbage collectors and janitors, grocery store clerks and secretaries, musicians and geologists, pizza delivery guys and miners, and on and on and on.

I couldn’t agree more with you. What the world doesn’t need is a janitor complaining about how much a doctor is making.

I've never heard anybody complain about how much money doctors make. They have to work very hard to get where they are, usually put themselves in significant debt in the process, and, unlike many rich people, are useful to society.

In reply to:
I personally don’t believe we can ever earn poverty. I’d like to see world hunger end, but poverty will always exist. The people who earn the least within the society you’re looking at are the poverty level.

In reply to:
And it makes sense that some occupations require more skills and should get paid proportionately more. And some occupations require people who can invest their money, take risks, make good decisions, and when they create more wealth that way it is a pay-off for the risks they did take and the investment of money and time and skills.

This is exactly what I have been saying all along.

What doesn’t make sense is that the people who are in those occupations should have to give up the money they earn for making good decision, taking risk, investing wisely, and applying their time and skills.

It's called taxes. Everybody pays them.

In reply to:
In reply to:
But it doesn't make sense that those who are working full-time in many of the jobs that form the foundation of this society cannot make a decent living on that money.

Raising how much money is earned at the bottom will not increase their quality of life.

Of course it would.

In reply to:
For example, if the Untied States raise the minimum wage to 20.00 USD an hour as the minimum federally mandated rate, good at all levels would also rise in cost. Food prices would rise, transportation prices would rise, rents would rise, and everything else. More money in someone pocket isn’t going to make him or her financially independent unless people learn to live within their income level.

Based on your post, I think you were trying to tell me I was wrong, but you seem to support what I have been saying so far.

I'm sure most people agree with you to an extent. We all agree that a doctor should make more than a janitor. You just take it to an extreme.

Not sure what you mean by I take it to an extreme. High earning doctors are part of the 1% defined by the guys on this site.

I tend to think the people here are taking it to extremes and seeing the issue as black and white, when in reality is much more complicated.

This whole discussion is ridiculous. People arguing against changes to tax policy like to pretend the world is flat, and any shift in tax burden unfairly tilts the plateau. Guess what, the world isn't flat -- all economic systems advantage some and disadvantage others, and successful societies need to constantly tweak things to maintain balance. We've played around with big tax cuts, and the result has been piss-poor. There is essentially no evidence that the Bush cuts led to any growth, but lots of evidence that it accelerated redistribution of income to the upper tier. Can someone tell me why we shouldn't move back toward a marginal rate structure that has worked well in the past? Our last tweak didn't work, so let's tweak things back the other direction and see what happens. What's the big deal here?


camhead


Dec 15, 2011, 5:17 AM
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Ok, I think that up-topic there was some discussion of misleading graphs (or was that in another thread? all the soapbox kind of melts together after a while). Anyway, can anyone see what's wrong with this graph?



full story.

Seriously, Fox News, fuck off and die you cynical, dishonest, partisan fucks.


Toast_in_the_Machine


Dec 15, 2011, 5:59 AM
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camhead wrote:
Seriously, Fox News, fuck off and die you cynical, dishonest, partisan fucks.

Shhh....

Fox news is hurting the repblicans.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/...merica-conservatives


scrapedape


Dec 15, 2011, 6:41 AM
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camhead wrote:
Ok, I think that up-topic there was some discussion of misleading graphs (or was that in another thread? all the soapbox kind of melts together after a while). Anyway, can anyone see what's wrong with this graph?

[image]http://cloudfront.mediamatters.org/static/images/item/fnc-an-20111212-unemployment.jpg[/image]

full story.

Seriously, Fox News, fuck off and die you cynical, dishonest, partisan fucks.

I've got two things so far.


Partner cracklover


Dec 15, 2011, 8:38 AM
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camhead wrote:
Ok, I think that up-topic there was some discussion of misleading graphs (or was that in another thread? all the soapbox kind of melts together after a while). Anyway, can anyone see what's wrong with this graph?



full story.

Seriously, Fox News, fuck off and die you cynical, dishonest, partisan fucks.

Well, the obvious thing is the last point on the graph. It should be the lowest point, but is represented incorrectly. But of course that would tell a very different story.

Anyway, that's all I see. What else?

GO


lena_chita
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Dec 15, 2011, 11:03 AM
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guangzhou wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
Yes, 5.13 is attainable for many, with enough determination.

But to put it in the context of this thread, don't talk about how many CLIMBERS can climb 5.13. Talk about how many PEOPLE-- general population-- can climb 5.13. And then make a claim that everyone could-- still reasonable?

That makes no sense to me. If someone never climbs, of course they can never climb 5.13. Same is also true of people who never take the risk to make big money, or people who make choices that don’t bring them into the big earning sectors. If you’re not willing to risk, nor willing to make some sacrifices, you can’t expect the rewards.

If everyone had the same opportunity to try climbing and work on it, it might be true, it would all come to innate ability ability and determination. But it isn't. If you don't have rocks near you, or a gym near you, or expendable income allowing you to drop $25-$60 in a whim to try climbing for a day, or parents who could take you to the gym, you will never try climbing, so even if you theoretically have the potential climbing ability of another Chris Sharma, that potential will never be realized.

And the same with "getting to the top 1%" in income.You are talking about people who never take big risks to make big money. Hah! how much of a "big risk" can you take with $100 to make any sort of a substantial return?

In this world, money makes more money.

Two kids of the same intelligence, athletic ability, race, etc., could have completely different odds of success AT BIRTH based on which womb they came from.And then the odds are compounded over years.



guangzhou wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
The worlds needs garbage collectors and janitors, grocery store clerks and secretaries, musicians and geologists, pizza delivery guys and miners, and on and on and on.

I couldn’t agree more with you. What the world doesn’t need is a janitor complaining about how much a doctor is making.

I haven't heard such complaints to be wide-spread.



guangzhou wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
And it makes sense that some occupations require more skills and should get paid proportionately more. And some occupations require people who can invest their money, take risks, make good decisions, and when they create more wealth that way it is a pay-off for the risks they did take and the investment of money and time and skills.

This is exactly what I have been saying all along.

What doesn’t make sense is that the people who are in those occupations should have to give up the money they earn for making good decision, taking risk, investing wisely, and applying their time and skills.

Well, everyone IS having to "give up money" in taxes.The question is how much is fair.

I think it is fair that I, earning more than an average salary, should pay more in taxes than someone who is making a minimal wage. Even after those taxes are taken out of my salary, I am still left with more than a minimal-wage earner is left with, after having his taxes taken out.
And similarly, people who earn more than me, should also pay more, and they will be left with more money that I have, too.


Instead, we have a widening gap between the top and the bottom.

You keep saying that those on top have "earned" their money, but they haven't "earned it" so much as they have been able to use the money they have in plenty to lobby the government for the policies that would leave them with yet more money.

This is very different than a nurse "earning" more money by choosing to work a night shift, for example, or an engineer choosing to work extra hours, or a secretary choosing to make some extra cash working for a tutoring agency in the evening.


guangzhou


Dec 16, 2011, 6:22 PM
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lena_chita wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
Yes, 5.13 is attainable for many, with enough determination.

But to put it in the context of this thread, don't talk about how many CLIMBERS can climb 5.13. Talk about how many PEOPLE-- general population-- can climb 5.13. And then make a claim that everyone could-- still reasonable?

That makes no sense to me. If someone never climbs, of course they can never climb 5.13. Same is also true of people who never take the risk to make big money, or people who make choices that don’t bring them into the big earning sectors. If you’re not willing to risk, nor willing to make some sacrifices, you can’t expect the rewards.

If everyone had the same opportunity to try climbing and work on it, it might be true, it would all come to innate ability a bility and determination. But it isn't. If you don't have rocks near you, or a gym near you, or expendable income allowing you to drop $25-$60 in a whim to try climbing for a day, or parents who could take you to the gym, you will never try climbing, so even if you theoretically have the potential climbing ability of another Chris Sharma, that potential will never be realized.

The difference is everyone has the same opportunity to basic education and higher education, and to working, and to starting a business in America. While I agree some have to work harder to get there, the services, programs, and system is in place.

In this case, I am speaking about Americans having the opportunity not the entire world. Separating America from the rest of the world is like separating climbers from the general population.

In reply to:
And the same with "getting to the top 1%" in income.You are talking about people who never take big risks to make big money. Hah! how much of a "big risk" can you take with $100 to make any sort of a substantial return?

I never said everyone can be in the top 1%, statistically that wouldn’t make sense anyway. What I said is that anyone who truly dedicates himself or herself in American can be financially successful.


In reply to:
In this world, money makes more money.

A huge myth, most likely started by rich Americans a few decades ago to keep other people from trying.
Plenty of businesses have been stated with next to nothing in people’s living room and garages. Money doesn’t even make money more money easy from what I see of rich people. Start small and row, find someone to invest in your idea, the options are around.








In reply to:
Two kids of the same intelligence, athletic ability, race, etc., could have completely different odds of success AT BIRTH based on which womb they came from.And then the odds are compounded over years.

Completely different paths to success.



guangzhou wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
The worlds needs garbage collectors and janitors, grocery store clerks and secretaries, musicians and geologists, pizza delivery guys and miners, and on and on and on.

I couldn’t agree more with you. What the world doesn’t need is a janitor complaining about how much a doctor is making.

In reply to:
I haven't heard such complaints to be wide-spread.

Read the post on this site. If a top 1% earner is making 350,000 USD a year, plenty of high-end great doctors will be penalized by paying extra taxes.

guangzhou wrote:
lena_chita wrote:
And it makes sense that some occupations require more skills and should get paid proportionately more. And some occupations require people who can invest their money, take risks, make good decisions, and when they create more wealth that way it is a pay-off for the risks they did take and the investment of money and time and skills.

This is exactly what I have been saying all along.

What doesn’t make sense is that the people who are in those occupations should have to give up the money they earn for making good decision, taking risk, investing wisely, and applying their time and skills.

Well, everyone IS having to "give up money" in taxes. The question is how much is fair.

I think it is fair that I, earning more than an average salary, should pay more in taxes than someone who is making a minimal wage. Even after those taxes are taken out of my salary, I am still left with more than a minimal-wage earner is left with, after having his taxes taken out.
And similarly, people who earn more than me, should also pay more, and they will be left with more money that I have, too.
Fair? I haven’t heard that as a reason sense the 6th grade. Fair to you is unfair to someone else.

They already pay more. 10% of a 100 is is 10. 10% of a 1000 is 1000. The top 1% pay almost half of of the income tax in the U.S.


In reply to:
Instead, we have a widening gap between the top and the bottom.

You keep saying that those on top have "earned" their money, but they haven't "earned it" so much as they have been able to use the money they have in plenty to lobby the government for the policies that would leave them with yet more money.

Our government is set up to be lobbied. Any lobbying done by the rich that is successful has result and changes that others can take advantage of too. Lobbying is also how they earn their money, a much more complicated process than the average 9-5 job.

If I earn large sums of money, I plan on leaving it to my children. Why is that wrong exactly?

In reply to:
This is very different than a nurse "earning" more money by choosing to work a night shift, for example, or an engineer choosing to work extra hours, or a secretary choosing to make some extra cash working for a tutoring agency in the evening.

The nurse isn’t being asked to pay a higher tax rate for working overtime. The percentage stays the same; the amount that leaves her paycheck increases.

Not only do the rich pay a higher percentages of the Nation’s income, they also give much more to Charity, one of their tax breaks. Philanthropy is alive and well in American society because of the top 1%.


Toast_in_the_Machine


Dec 16, 2011, 7:56 PM
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guangzhou wrote:
A huge myth, most likely started by rich Americans a few decades ago to keep other people from trying.
Plenty of businesses have been stated with next to nothing in people’s living room and garages. Money doesn’t even make money more money easy from what I see of rich people. Start small and row, find someone to invest in your idea, the options are around.

...

Not only do the rich pay a higher percentages of the Nation’s income, they also give much more to Charity, one of their tax breaks. Philanthropy is alive and well in American society because of the top 1%.

The problem when trying to construct an arguement based on deductive reasoning is that sometimes you can be right:

http://blogs.wsj.com/...-of-inherited-money/
In reply to:
According to a study of Federal Reserve data conducted by NYU professor Edward Wolff, for the nation’s richest 1%, inherited wealth accounted for only 9% of their net worth in 2001, down from 23% in 1989. (The 2001 number was the latest available.)

and wrong

http://www.mcclatchydc.com/...s-most-generous.html



The problem is that a it only takes a few wrongs damage your credibility on economic matters.


guangzhou


Dec 16, 2011, 9:43 PM
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The rich don't donate to Charities per say, they tend to give in the form of Philanthropical view.

In many case, the rich give directly from their business versus from their personal pocket too. Nothing wring with that.

Some numbers of those greedy rich people never giving back are bellow. (See I can can google too)

$31 billion from Warren Buffett to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (initial value of the gift)[2]

$9 billion from Chuck Feeney to Atlantic Philanthropies

$2 billion from Azim Premji to the Azim Premji Foundation in 2010.[3]

$500 million from T. Boone Pickens to Oklahoma State University.[4]

$500 million from Walter Annenberg to public school reform in the United States[5]

$350 million ($7 billion in modern terms) from Andrew Carnegie in 1901 who distributed most of his wealth to good causes, including the building Carnegie Hall New York City.[6]

$424 million from managers of the Reader's Digest fortune to the Metropolitan Museum of Art[7]

$350 million from Michael Jackson who distributed most of his wealth to good causes, and who supported over 39 charity organizations. He was listed in the Guinness Book Of World Records for the "Most Charities Supported By a Pop Star".

$350 million from Yank Barry and his Global Village Champions in food, education and medical supplies to the needy around the World from 1990 to the present.

$225 million from Raymond and Ruth Perelman, parents of Ronald O. Perelman, to the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in 2011.

$200 million from Joan B. Kroc to National Public Radio in 2003[7]

$100 million from John D. Rockefeller to the Rockefeller Foundation, 1913-1914[8]

$100 million from Henry and Betty Rowan to Glassboro State College[9]


(This post was edited by guangzhou on Dec 16, 2011, 9:48 PM)


dan2see


Dec 16, 2011, 10:00 PM
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guangzhou wrote:
...
The difference is everyone has the same opportunity to basic education and higher education, and to working, and to starting a business in America. While I agree some have to work harder to get there, the services, programs, and system is in place.
...

GZ, you do too have a sense of humor!


guangzhou


Dec 17, 2011, 4:42 AM
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dan2see wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
...
The difference is everyone has the same opportunity to basic education and higher education, and to working, and to starting a business in America. While I agree some have to work harder to get there, the services, programs, and system is in place.
...

GZ, you do too have a sense of humor!

How so?


guangzhou


Dec 17, 2011, 4:48 AM
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Toast_in_the_Machine wrote:
guangzhou wrote:
A huge myth, most likely started by rich Americans a few decades ago to keep other people from trying.
Plenty of businesses have been stated with next to nothing in people’s living room and garages. Money doesn’t even make money more money easy from what I see of rich people. Start small and row, find someone to invest in your idea, the options are around.

...

Not only do the rich pay a higher percentages of the Nation’s income, they also give much more to Charity, one of their tax breaks. Philanthropy is alive and well in American society because of the top 1%.

The problem when trying to construct an arguement based on deductive reasoning is that sometimes you can be right:

http://blogs.wsj.com/...-of-inherited-money/
In reply to:
According to a study of Federal Reserve data conducted by NYU professor Edward Wolff, for the nation’s richest 1%, inherited wealth accounted for only 9% of their net worth in 2001, down from 23% in 1989. (The 2001 number was the latest available.)

and wrong

http://www.mcclatchydc.com/...s-most-generous.html

[image]http://media.mcclatchydc.com/smedia/2009/05/19/16/264-20090514_CHARITY.small.prod_affiliate.91.jpg[/image]

The problem is that a it only takes a few wrongs damage your credibility on economic matters.

The poor are more charitable than the middle class, completely agree. here, we are talking about the top 1%

In reply to:
Giving by Class: The two groups in the United States that give the highest percentages of their income are the poor (those making less than $20,000 per year) and the rich (those making more than $100,000 per year). Middle-class Americans (those making between $40,000 and $100,000 per year) are the smallest percentage givers.11


scrapedape


Dec 17, 2011, 11:15 AM
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A related, and I think interesting, topic, but not necessarily worthy of its own thread:

In reply to:
Households both want and need to understand the incentives they face at the
margin for working and saving. Yet any American seeking to understand her total
effective net marginal tax on either choice faces a daunting challenge. First, she needs to
consider a host of taxes and transfers including federal personal income taxes, federal
corporate income taxes, federal payroll taxes, federal excise taxes, state personal income
taxes, state corporate income taxes, state sales taxes, state excise taxes, Social Security
benefits, welfare benefits (TAFDC), Supplemental Security Income benefits (SSI),
Medicaid benefits, Medicare benefit, food stamps, nutrition benefits (WIC), and energy
assistance benefits (LIHEAP). Second, she needs to understand in very fine detail how
each of these taxes and transfers is calculated. Third, she needs to understand the
interactions of the different tax and transfer programs. Fourth, she needs to consider the
fact that these taxes and transfers are paid and received over time. And fifth, she needs to
have a method for translating all of these interconnected time-dated tax payments and
benefit receipts into a simple and comprehensible statement of her marginal reward for
working and saving.

In reply to:
The paper provides four main takeaways. First, thanks to the incredible
complexity of the U.S. fiscal system, it’s essentially impossible for anyone to understand
her incentive to work, save, or contribute to retirement accounts absent highly advanced
4
computer technology and software. Second, the U.S. fiscal system provides most
households with very strong reasons to limit their labor supply and saving. Third, the
system offers very high-income young and middle aged households as well as most older
households tremendous opportunities to arbitrage the tax system by contributing to
retirement accounts. Fourth, the patterns by age and income of marginal net tax rates on
earnings, marginal net tax rates on saving, and tax-arbitrage opportunities can be
summarized with one word – bizarre.

Source. My only comment at this point is that "bizarre" has pretty strong normative connotations for an academic paper.

A concrete example:
In reply to:
A woman called me out of the blue last week and told me her self-sufficiency counselor had suggested she get in touch with me. She had moved from a $25,000 a year job to a $35,000 a year job, and suddenly she couldn't make ends meet any more. I told her I didn't know what I could do for her, but agreed to meet with her. She showed me all her pay stubs etc. She really did come out behind by several hundred dollars a month.


calvo


Dec 31, 2011, 10:21 PM
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guangzhou wrote:
In reply to:
They already are.

It's amazing to me that Middle Class American's are willing to blame the rich for being successful but penalizing them with higher taxes.

In reply to:
Interesting. Very interesting. "Blame", "successful", "penalize”. Lots of emotional hot button words, yet amazingly devoid of thought. I, frankly, expect better than that. Since I know you are free of the knee jerk Fox / Limbaugh influences I expected at least a reply that contained the briefest of economic arguments. Since you didn’t provide one, and since you, by default, dubbed me the Middle Class American (which I proudly am), allow me to provide at least an attempt at a meaningful response.

I too am a member of the American the middle class, near the bottom actually.

First of all, it is a shame that you are among those who are persuaded by propaganda. (Propaganda is often biased, with facts selectively presented (thus possibly lying by omission) to encourage a particular synthesis, or uses loaded messages to produce an emotional rather than rational response to the information presented.) To think that you are among those who so eagerly poison yourselves by being manipulated.

In reply to:
In reply to:
I will assume that you did not glance at the link I provided. Pity. While it is a starting point for policy recommendations, it is worth, at least in understanding why the “occupy” movement is more popular than the “tea party”. Simply put – since Reagan, the rich have gotten richer. Not just rich in an absolute sense, but in a percentage of overall wealth. Today, to be in the 1% means more than it did when Star Wars figures were a cool new toy. The facts are, as good as we can tell, pointing to a divergence. The rich are getting richer and no one else is. America is slouching towards a banana republic level of wealth distribution. While personal stories of success above ones initial station in life will, hopefully, continue, the cold hard mass of statistics says it will not for most. And that is the risk. The risk of no hope. This is a risk to me and the risk to my fellow Americans.

While the rich are getting richer, I don’t agree with the thesis that no-one else is. I do believe that Americans are getting less economically responsible.

Totally agree with you there the country as a whole is slowly improving in lifestyle. What do you mean by that second sentence? What I grasp, corporations such as banks are working to slowly become less regulated so that they can do what they want. Regulations are put in place to avoid certain expected outcomes. Through regulation, this countries economy has become a whole lot more stable since the great depression. And through the bail-out money, we did not suffer as bad a depression as it could have been (you can argue the ethics of such a bailout, but it is undeniable that things could have been way worse). On the other hand, if your concerned that Americans are becoming less economically responsible, which leads them to elect representatives who promise to carry out their less responsible misguided views on how policies work, then YES your right! The GOP is only allowed to do what they do because people are electing their representatives who promise less economicaly responsible promises.

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Part of the Reagan ideal was that if we let the rich have just a little more money, they would, as the great “job creators” “trickle down” the money to the rest of us. At the time, I thought it was bull shit. But hey, sometimes you try things you don’t think will work because you need to try something different. Well, guess what. It didn’t work. Well, actually it did. It helped the rich. The rising tide did not lift everyone, in fact, the tide lifted only the yachts and everyone else was left behind.

Reagan didn’t invent the trickle down theory, but generally speaking, it’s more effective than taking from the people who are successful in business and giving it to those who have not done anything to earn expect being unsuccessful.

Without the incentive of making money, fewer people would go out and innovate, invent, and create.

The "trickle down effect" is a cool idea in theory but it is not practical. It relies on through the lowering of taxes, people have more disposable money. They either A) Spend it, which goes back into the economy through consumption. or B) They save it in a bank. It has been statistically shown that the more money people earn the more percentage of it they are going to save in the bank. That is good too! Banks take the money people put into their savings accounts and invest it! The Banks invest the saved money into projects which help the economy and create jobs ..etc. The problem is!! This latest fuck up, was through deregulation of banks, allowed them to make less economically responsible decisions on who they loaned out the money to. They messed up, and although they got bailed out, they are now more stingy about lending their money. They are not going to be taking any risks in the immediate future on investments... which is where the whole "trick down effect" would be doing its work for the economy.

So like, in a stable economy if you did want to do it, it is plausible that it could work. But it would never be able to turn around a hurt economy, and especially not one such as this latest one which has led to banks unwilling to loan their money out the way they would during a more stable period economically.

On the other hand, by raising taxes the government has more money to spend on programs which put people in work and lift us out of the depression. Ever heard of the CCC (civilian conservation corp)? It had almost 400,000 paid employees at its peak. It was created by Rosevelt during the Great Depression to put young men to work. Professionals were paid to teach young men skills which the government paid them to perform. A great amount of parks, trailers, and outdoor structures are still around from the CCC. Yes they really as practical as going to war and the government producing weapons used to thwart our enemies, but it did help. And are you aware that a war time economy is one that is efficient much beyond what can be maintained, and it is just that which allowed us to survive after the great depression (WW2).

There is a great deal of double dipping on issues on the GOP's part. Less government regulation in some areas which we might deem needy. But they are continuing to subsidize products such as sugar, oil, and corn. ALL of which are already very profitable, why do they want government involved in such a thing? I may be going on a limb, but I would say they are looking out for the people they really care about, those run, and own those production companies. Lol if you were just a greedy asshole trying to make money with your company I would understand you, but you don't benefit from these propaganda based policies goals.

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Since that time, to assume that it is right and appropriate to put have a tax system says that the more you make, the more you have benefitted from our society, therefore, the more you should pay has been labeled “class warfare” or, to use some of the words you use “blame the rich”. But it isn’t, it is an honest expectation that those who most benefit from our society and the stability, freedom, and economic opportunities that it provides pay more. Not just more in a simple straight line, but more because, as part of our society, they need to pay more than someone else who can’t afford to pay as much. The money is needed for the collective whole of society and the people with a strong disproportion of the money are best able to give up more of it.

Those who have benefited the most have done so by going out and making things happen. The system is there for everyone, some choose to take risk and make money, others decide to go work for those who took risk by starting businesses and make less money, then complain that the people who own the company make more money than they do while doing nothing.

If we were truly individual in our exploits, we would have no need for any form of formal community.. and countries would not exist, it would simply be corporations and their employees living amongst each other. Human behavior is not quite as black and white, which is why we give the government the power it has to do its best as a Democratic Republic to care to the communities. The government is only there because we put it there, and Republicans never cease to remind us about that .. and that I have to agree with, it is important to remember that the government is our tool... not the other way around. However its purpose by nature is to act as a communal safety net to make sure that we are all investing ourselves, and are getting something from it by calling ourselves citizens of our country.

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Oh, and I suspect you aren’t likely to keep exploring issues of wealth and divergence, because I’m guessing you are comfortable in your views and not up to the challenge. Slate is continuing its articles on the creation and the how and why of income disparity in the US. Here is their explanation on why http://www.slate.com/..._so_much_worse_.html

Please, feel free to read. I think the author if this article is mostly pimping a book, but to understand the true flaws one would need to get out of associating ones’ views with one’s class. And “class” is not just last century; it is a concept that is about two centuries gone.

The article supports that the best at their jobs are getting richer for sure. Why shouldn’t they? Those with the most experience and best skills should be getting paid more. If I were recruiting a new person to preform a task within my company and that person had a job doing the same thing for another company, I would entice him with a higher salary and better benefit package. The better you are at doing what you do, the more you should be paid for your skills.

Being the best at something, or better than your competitor is a good thing in my book. I hate that American is teaching people, kids especially, that participation is good enough. Individuals and sport team members now get certificates and medals of completion so they don’t feel bad for losing. This instills an attitude that just trying is good enough, you don’t have to be successful; you’ll get something no matter what.

As for wealth and divergence, I agree, rich people are getting richer. Of course, they have more skills at getting richer and focus their life on it. Me, I don’t care why this is happening or how to reverse the trend by making the rich poorer. Instead, I am working on getting richer myself.

Another words, I plan on making my life financially better by pulling myself up, instead of bringing others down to my level. Instead of complaining about the gap, work on closing it by raising your own financial gains. Stop collecting certificates of completion.

There is a movie on Netflix >> http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0819791/ <<< (the one percent).
In this movie it describes more than simply skills at making money (which is awesome, and no one should be "punished" for being a successful businessmen), but skills at hoarding ones money, and ensuring that the money stays within the family.


ALSO I hope the GOP continue to preach their madness for it keeps the intellectually capable on the same side :} . The only thing worse that these comical policies is not being able to discuss and debate over such issues. OH WAIT!!! The GOP is working to pass policy which will allow for a wider profiling of "terrorists" and which will allow "terrorists" to be restricted of civil rights! Even if they're citizens before they are labelled terrorists! Wow you must feel like you never will get pegged, cause if you did some day wouldn't you feel fucking stupid.

Happy New Years!!! 2012 If the world really does end in a year, it will because the Mayans predicted the GOP getting a chance to go ahead with their bullshit


Partner j_ung


Jan 3, 2012, 9:41 AM
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Re: [guangzhou] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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guangzhou wrote:
The poor are more charitable than the middle class, completely agree. here, we are talking about the top 1%

Define "charitable."

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Giving by Class: The two groups in the United States that give the highest percentages of their income are the poor (those making less than $20,000 per year) and the rich (those making more than $100,000 per year). Middle-class Americans (those making between $40,000 and $100,000 per year) are the smallest percentage givers.11

I certainly fall into that middle-class category. Hell, I give virtually zero dollars to charity each year. But monetary giving is not the whole story. I volunteer my time frequently as a member of the local climbing-org BOD. In 2011, I also donated my time to produce a video and a website for separate non-profit groups. If I assign a rough monetary value to all that time, equipment and gasoline, I come up with a figure somewhere around 6-7% of my gross income, which pretty much destroys every average in that graph posted upthread, regardless of income range.

Am I an outlier, or is volunteer time something that is woefully undervalued in those figures? I honestly don't know.


dan2see


Jan 3, 2012, 2:44 PM
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Re: [j_ung] what is a 1%er [In reply to]
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j_ung wrote:
...I certainly fall into that middle-class category. Hell, I give virtually zero dollars to charity each year. But monetary giving is not the whole story. I volunteer my time frequently as a member of the local climbing-org BOD. In 2011, I also donated my time to produce a video and a website for separate non-profit groups. If I assign a rough monetary value to all that time, equipment and gasoline, I come up with a figure somewhere around 6-7% of my gross income, which pretty much destroys every average in that graph posted upthread, regardless of income range.

Am I an outlier, or is volunteer time something that is woefully undervalued in those figures? I honestly don't know.

Everybody I know lists their volunteer duties on their resume. And I've heard hiring managers explain how these skills and experience can be valued just as much as paid work.

My wife and I have always volunteered regularly for something. Usually community work, but always for some group or organization that interests us. Our volunteer duties always returned good value to us.

I don't regard volunteering as "giving back". It's like the Paul McCartney's ending for "The End":
"... and in the end, the love you take, is equal to the love you make."

Today I volunteer for the Alpine Club in Calgary; I'm the Newletter Editor. Not a charity, but still it's community-based. Not a sacrifice, either: if I couldn't do this for the Alpine Club, I'd do it for some other outdoors-related group, like Alberta Wildlife.

Also, our choice of "giving" was never influenced by our affluence.

It's what I want to do.


(This post was edited by dan2see on Jan 3, 2012, 2:50 PM)


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