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Old 29-12-2013, 10:24   #151
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Re: Save the Planet!

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what frightens me to no end is the mentality that the jobs quotient will offset the environmental impact. The fact is very few jobs will go to the locals, they will lay waste to the country side and go on down the road to the next conquest with nary a backward glance.
So true. A new mine was recently opened in British Columbia, with an almost entirely temp workforce from China. Reason - "Canadians couldn't be found with the required experience in this sort of mining".... right, like we don't have one of the most educated workforces in the world. Couldn't have been due to the Chinese workforce being paid less, no...

It's one thing to sell off our resources at below world prices (cough-tarsands-cough), but hey let's not hire local workers either.

-sigh -

Happy new year, anyway.
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Old 29-12-2013, 10:44   #152
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Overpopulation is enemy #1

Overpopulation is a huge problem for reasons other that just food supply.

--Sealevel is rising which will be displace millions of people from low lying (food productive) coastlines over the very near future. Where will these (mostly poor) people go? "Not in my backyard" will take on a whole new meaning.

--High population density has made us extremely dependent on "supply lines" and infastructure that is very vulnerable to natural disasters. Large urban populations have developed with no mechanism to feed or support themselves when this complex dependancy fails. The internet is just the latest example of how quickly we accept becoming reliant on something that can just as quickly disappear.

--Earthquakes, floods, mega storms, and climate change will effect all areas at some point over geologic time, but our population density has limtied our ability to cope with the results.

Even under the best scenario, the population will still be rising until the end of the century. What microbe could resisit such a resource?
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Old 29-12-2013, 10:49   #153
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So true. A new mine was recently opened in British Columbia, with an almost entirely temp workforce from China. Reason - "Canadians couldn't be found with the required experience in this sort of mining".... right, like we don't have one of the most educated workforces in the world. Couldn't have been due to the Chinese workforce being paid less, no...

It's one thing to sell off our resources at below world prices (cough-tarsands-cough), but hey let's not hire local workers either.

-sigh -

Happy new year, anyway.
It's not just Canada.

http://voices.yahoo.com/new-san-fran...-12105403.html
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Old 29-12-2013, 11:33   #154
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Re: Save the Planet!

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So true. A new mine was recently opened in British Columbia, with an almost entirely temp workforce from China. Reason - "Canadians couldn't be found with the required experience in this sort of mining".... right, like we don't have one of the most educated workforces in the world. Couldn't have been due to the Chinese workforce being paid less, no...

It's one thing to sell off our resources at below world prices (cough-tarsands-cough), but hey let's not hire local workers either.

-sigh -

Happy new year, anyway.
Hmm, I hear the same arguments in Thailand about Burmese workers. You probably don't want to hear it but in a global economy unskilled labor is going to the lowest bidder. Do Canadians really want these jobs? If they do they need to change their attitudes about what they should be paid. Don't feel alone, even China is farming out jobs to places like Bangladesh and on down the line it goes.
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Old 29-12-2013, 12:21   #155
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Re: Save the Planet!

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Hmm, I hear the same arguments in Thailand about Burmese workers. You probably don't want to hear it but in a global economy unskilled labor is going to the lowest bidder. Do Canadians really want these jobs? If they do they need to change their attitudes about what they should be paid. Don't feel alone, even China is farming out jobs to places like Bangladesh and on down the line it goes.
While the archaic notions of "country" and "consumer economy" are still observed... hell yeah, I expect that the exploitation of a country's resources will yield benefits to the "country" and to its citizens, as well as to the corporations doin' the exploitin'.

Don't you?
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Old 29-12-2013, 13:46   #156
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Re: Save the Planet!

I guess you didn't get the memo, it is hurrah for the multinational corporations and the devil takes the hindmost. They truly do run the show folks.
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Old 29-12-2013, 14:21   #157
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Re: Save the Planet!

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While the archaic notions of "country" and "consumer economy" are still observed... hell yeah, I expect that the exploitation of a country's resources will yield benefits to the "country" and to its citizens, as well as to the corporations doin' the exploitin'.

Don't you?
No, I guess I don't. I think it makes the most sense in a global economy to match the work with the labor pool. Does it make sense to pay someone $9.00 hour in Canada or the U.S. to put a widget in a hole when you can pay someone in India or China to do it for a tenth of the cost? What good does in do a developed country to prop up a workforce that puts widgets into holes? I don't think its good for either country.
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Old 29-12-2013, 14:27   #158
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Re: Save the Planet!

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No, I guess I don't. I think it makes the most sense in a global economy to match the work with the labor pool. Does it make sense to pay someone $9.00 hour in Canada or the U.S. to put a widget in a hole when you can pay someone in India or China to do it for a tenth of the cost? What good does in do a developed country to prop up a workforce that puts widgets into holes? I don't think its good for either country.
I dunno... does it make sense? Yes, if you want a country with a stable, healthy, educated, consuming workforce, since the US and Canada are still 70% consumer economies. Who's gonna buy the stuffed widget-holes, otherwise?

What put you into a cruising boat - starting a business in the US with US workers, selling to Americans and the rest of the world, or have you made your pile by firing Americans and outsourcing? Who buys your widgets?
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Old 29-12-2013, 14:40   #159
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Re: Save the Planet!

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I dunno... does it make sense? Yes, if you want a country with a stable, healthy, educated, consuming workforce, since the US and Canada are still 70% consumer economies. Who's gonna buy the stuffed widget-holes, otherwise?

What put you into a cruising boat - starting a business in the US with US workers, selling to Americans and the rest of the world, or have you made your pile by firing Americans and outsourcing? Who buys your widgets?
Yes, we may be 70% consumer driven but who makes the stuff? Not us. My iPhone says "designed in California" and "assembled in China". To me that makes perfect sense .. match the workforce to the work. Why do we want to cultivate jobs that are basically menial labor? We need to cultivate jobs that require higher education and skills and let the menial stuff go overseas where they need it. Let's face it the world is getting much smaller and what happens beyond our borders makes a difference to all of us. Everyone needs jobs and those in developing countries are best suited for low skill manufacturing jobs not higher educated Westerners.
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Old 29-12-2013, 14:50   #160
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pirate Re: Save the Planet!

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Yes, we may be 70% consumer driven but who makes the stuff? Not us. My iPhone says "designed in California" and "assembled in China". To me that makes perfect sense .. match the workforce to the work. Why do we want to cultivate jobs that are basically menial labor? We need to cultivate jobs that require higher education and skills and let the menial stuff go overseas where they need it.
When you and the UK have achieved that dream.. and can maintain a full workforce.. fine.
But the UK has a deplorable record on that score.. a large proportion of kids leaving education barely able to read and write so they're only any good for the menial aka blue collar jobs.. but as they are all out sourced they're on the dole instead..
Dunno about your country.. but from what I've seen in some states its not a whole lot better...
Crap schools.. constant political interference which screws the teachers around so much there's no continuity..
Jump off the platform of privilege and take a walk around the inner cities... dress appropriately..
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Old 29-12-2013, 15:01   #161
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Re: Save the Planet!

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When you and the UK have achieved that dream.. and can maintain a full workforce.. fine.
But the UK has a deplorable record on that score.. a large proportion of kids leaving education barely able to read and write so they're only any good for the menial aka blue collar jobs.. but as they are all out sourced they're on the dole instead..
Dunno about your country.. but from what I've seen in some states its not a whole lot better...
Crap schools.. constant political interference which screws the teachers around so much there's no continuity..
Jump off the platform of privilege and take a walk around the inner cities... dress appropriately..
So, we should force companies to setup shops to put widgets in holes so that the kids our education system has failed will have meaningful employment? That's sounds a bit backwards to me. Maybe we should look at our education systems instead.
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Old 29-12-2013, 15:33   #162
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Re: Save the Planet!

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Yes, we may be 70% consumer driven but who makes the stuff? Not us. My iPhone says "designed in California" and "assembled in China". To me that makes perfect sense .. match the workforce to the work. Why do we want to cultivate jobs that are basically menial labor? We need to cultivate jobs that require higher education and skills and let the menial stuff go overseas where they need it. Let's face it the world is getting much smaller and what happens beyond our borders makes a difference to all of us. Everyone needs jobs and those in developing countries are best suited for low skill manufacturing jobs not higher educated Westerners.
We in the Anglo-American capitalist countries have been pursuing this exact strategy for 30+years now. The results are pretty clear: massive and growing wealth disparity, decimation of the middle class, and diminishing outcomes and opportunities for the vast majority of citizens. Your approach makes perfect sense if lower-skilled jobs can be traded one-for-one for higher skilled ones. But the reality is that there are simply not as many high-skilled, well-paying jobs in our new globalized economy. It takes far fewer people to design your iPhone than it takes to build it. By shifting all the builder jobs to low-paying countries, we've not just thrown huge numbers of people out of productive work, but we've reduced the amount of work available to them.

What is the purpose of a job? The answer is two-fold. Firstly, it is to undertake productive (and therefore valued) activities for the society. But secondly, and perhaps more importantly, wage employment is the principle means by which wealth is distributed in our market-driven economies. Take this away (as we have done/are doing) and we quickly devolve back to the more historically typical societal structure of a few kings lording over lots of serfs. We managed to escape this reality for nearly 50 years, but with the resurgence of neo-liberal economic thinking, we are rapidly sliding back into a feudal structure.
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Old 29-12-2013, 15:45   #163
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Re: Save the Planet!

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We in the Anglo-American capitalist countries have been pursuing this exact strategy for 30+years now. The results are pretty clear: massive and growing wealth disparity, decimation of the middle class, and diminishing outcomes and opportunities for the vast majority of citizens. Your approach makes perfect sense if lower-skilled jobs can be traded one-for-one for higher skilled ones. But the reality is that there are simply not as many high-skilled, well-paying jobs in our new globalized economy. It takes far fewer people to design your iPhone than it takes to build it. By shifting all the builder jobs to low-paying countries, we've not just thrown huge numbers of people out of productive work, but we've reduced the amount of work available to them.

What is the purpose of a job? The answer is two-fold. Firstly, it is to undertake productive (and therefore valued) activities for the society. But secondly, and perhaps more importantly, wage employment is the principle means by which wealth is distributed in our market-driven economies. Take this away (as we have done/are doing) and we quickly devolve back to the more historically typical societal structure of a few kings lording over lots of serfs. We managed to escape this reality for nearly 50 years, but with the resurgence of neo-liberal economic thinking, we are rapidly sliding back into a feudal structure.
Mike, what you say may well be true but what's the alternative? I don't think we are going back to the good old days when a factory worker in the US could made a middle-class living. I think we may well look back one day and say that period was an usual time in history. Really, how long was the Industrial Age? And what will be the new economic/labor model for the Information/technology Age?
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Old 29-12-2013, 16:39   #164
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Re: Save the Planet!

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Mike, what you say may well be true but what's the alternative? I don't think we are going back to the good old days when a factory worker in the US could made a middle-class living. I think we may well look back one day and say that period was an usual time in history. Really, how long was the Industrial Age? And what will be the new economic/labor model for the Information/technology Age?
Yes ... you may be right. We may not be able to go back to the "New Deal" model. That said, we've arrived at the current place through the choices we've made. We've decided to elevate financial capital above human capital. We've given free global movement to money, but severely restrict labour. We've reduced the financial and social responsibilities we used to place on corporations in exchange for the rights and privileges we grant them. We as a society could make different choices.

In theory we could all, individually, choose to make a difference by refusing to buy stuff made using low-cost foreign labour. But I hold no hope for this strategy to work; in part b/c I can't tell someone who is making minimum wage to buy the more expensive T-shirt just to support local employment. I get it...

Personally, I think we're coming to a time when citizens will demand a different approach. It will take a revolution ... lets hope a peaceful one. But if we all come to understand that jobs are really just a way to redistribute the wealth of our society, then surely we can come up with other ways than just wage labour.
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Old 29-12-2013, 20:02   #165
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Re: Save the Planet!

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Mike, what you say may well be true but what's the alternative?
Managing the economy to serve society, instead of letting unrestrained capitalism gut societies.

When resources were thought inexhaustible, unfettered capitalism definitely worked. Look at railroad building in North America. (and sorry, First Peoples). But now that resources are known to be finite, and companies have wrung out just about every possible efficiency in their processes, the remaining source of high growth (outside of genuine innovation blips like the Internet) is... cannibalism. Companies are now creating profit by stripping wealth from people. And even each other. The 2008 economic crisis is exhibit A for what unregulated markets will do to society.

What's the alternative (to financial disparity and economic collapse)? A re-examination of our economic principles in the face of resource limitations and destabilizing iniquities. A conscious decision that the economy must serve society and not the other way around. A free market that can generate growth within resource and ethical constraints.

Relax. I'm not expecting alot of buy-in from a bunch of older white male yacht-owners.
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