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Old 13-01-2007, 21:22   #46
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Wasn't directed at you, my friend. Sorry for any misunderstanding
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Nah Sean, I wasn't taking it as such. I think we are all just rambling here. I trust anyway. I don't think there ever can be a real definitive answer. It's a "world system" that we are all part of. It won't ever change. It comes down to the individual to make the best decision based on the info and ability(money) they have at the time of purchase.
One thing I do want to make clear though. China gets a bum rap in all this. It's not their fault. They are just contracted to make a product. I know of many very high quality products from China as well. Oh sure, years ago it was a place very different, especially in the world of copy infringments. But it is fast changing today.
Even the sweat shops are mostly gone. That's because a few countries like NZ have shifted business there and so China is reaping the rewards of expertese and investment.
The return of Hong Kong changed the way China viewed western economy. Many thought China would close HongKong down, but quite the reverse has happend. It has opened the door to the inner country.
I remember as a kid, Made in Japan was cheap crap. Then as the Japanese economy grew, Made in Taiwan become the manufacturer of crap. Then Korea and India and Mexico and I dunno who's next, but the Japanese are makers of high quality sort after product now.
Ummm, would you believe I Made in the USA is viewed a little sidways now. :-)

Now here is an interesting story. I have a close friend that was invited to go to Bali to work for a company building boats. The guy managing the place is a Kiwi and is a friend of my friends. It was a Swiss company and they were building in Bali for a Russian Market. I haven't been able to find out what the company was. But I was most surprised with the two aspects of, A Swiss company building in Bali and the other point being, there was a Russian Market?
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Old 13-01-2007, 21:25   #47
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Hey Sean, the friends I meet up with when we go out boating, (Scott knows them) returned the other day with 5 Deer for the freezer. 5 Deer right out of their own back yard wilderness. Where on earth do you get to go hunting? oh and surely you don't hunt Deer with a shot gun :-0
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Old 13-01-2007, 21:29   #48
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This isn't excatly crusing related, but it's topic related, and it's short.

I have a friend, who is planning soon to start up his own video game company to design and make games. He comes to a few of his friends, and starts talking about it. One of the first things he says he will do, before he even mentions finding someone to do art, or music, or write a story, or even the coding. He says he needs to get a lawyer...

That right there is a perfect example of our society.
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Old 14-01-2007, 00:32   #49
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Hey Sean, what are the things we cannot afford that our parents and grandparents could?
Our parents and definitely grandparents did not have the choices and range of products available to them that we have. Most of the things we buy today were not even invented then. No mobile, computer, fax, flatscreen, ipod, cds, dvds, ........ Times were harder for them. It is up to us how hard we make it for ourselves. If we sit and moan about things the people who don't will move ahead. They dont care.

You have choices. The guys who get the cheap products made in China to sell to you have choices. Good on them for taking the risk and initiative.
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Old 14-01-2007, 00:43   #50
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They used to spend time growing their own food preserving it and making their clothes and fixing their tools etc as they could not afford to buy new or pay anyone. They had few appliances and luxury items. The good old days are only the good old days thanks to poor old memories.
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Old 14-01-2007, 01:25   #51
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They had time to preserve food, they had time to repair the car, they had time to repair the toaster, they had time to mow the 1/4acre section, they had time to drink at the pub and they had time to go and watch footy and play it. They even had time to go on family vacations.
Now we are supposedly in a time of more luxury and time saving items we can poke a stick at, and nobody seems to have time for anything.
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Old 14-01-2007, 01:35   #52
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If you buy product from the larget fence in the world, don't be surprised if it is less then you expect.

I love the US, I love our freedom, I love the fact that you can be whatever you want. You are free choose your life style, you can work hard or kick back and watch football all weekend. It's your choice. You can get an education, or learn a trade, or learn a business and make a good buck but you don't have to. Travel to China, or India, or Europe, or South America and you'll see people have very few opportunities to get ahead.

I love my country and countyman, warts and all!

http://www.american-car-flags.com/im...lag_waving.jpg

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Old 14-01-2007, 02:02   #53
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Yeah that's right, funny thing Alan, a washing machine is more than a fortnights average pay, dishwasher the same, drier and costs of running for a year is the same, all the other things add up so people have to work longer to to pay for all the things that save them time. Seems a bit silly really. Mind you most of the low income tenants I deal with have the lastest Flat Screen TV,s and entertainment systems, sky tv, broadband.........I suppose it is all about priorities.
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Old 14-01-2007, 04:03   #54
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Originally Posted by Joli
Travel to China, or India, or Europe, or South America and you'll see people have very few opportunities to get ahead.

I agree with your belief that this IS important. The next Bill Gates could well be born in a Trailer Park...........Although I can't speak for all of Europe , but this IME is not exactly true..........although from my experiances outside Europe this is often true, but IMO China and India will overcome this given time (unlike some other countries in the 3rd world who culturally never will allow the peasants up the tree).


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Originally Posted by CaptainJeff
(Example: if the US pulled its military forces out of most of Europe, now that the Cold War threat of Soviet expansionism is gone, France's economy would collapse within ten years under the burden of having to provide for all its own defense).
ROFLMAO .....Jeezus dude, are you sh#ttin me or do you really beleive this?? Kinda reminds me of the attitude Donald Rumsfeld moaning that the Europeans should spend more on "defence". I dunno whether he has read any history books, but Europe has done defence spending in the past. and we can be rather too good at it - I am quite happy that no one in Europe is any longer equipped to go stomping around the world - cos' they usually start in Europe. And folk like Donald Donut should be too.

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France finally got its unemployment rate under a stiltifying 11% around the year 2000, but it's still almost touching 10%. Compare that with a current US rate of around 4% (virtual universal employment: everyone who wants a job can have one).
France is NOT perfect by any stretch of the imagination - but as we are waving Stats around, one intreresting fact is that France is ABOVE Britain in terms of productivity by about 20%. (of course USA is well above everyone ).

The UK's productivity gap: the latest evidence from economic research - News archive - News and events - Press and Information Office - LSE

Britain has near on full employment (in the sense that if the locals want a McJob they can have one, which many don't, hence the import of cheap labour) and Britain is of course nowadays a disciple of all things American when it comes to Free Markets - even if they don't follow the American model when it comes to spending on social welfare etc.

Now I figure that if France had productivity on a par with the UK, they probably would have near full employment. Which is "right"?? I honestly dunno. But France is a great place.I like the fact that unlike Britain and IMO the USA they cling onto the idea that France primarily exists for the benefit of the French - rather than the attitude that they exist to do business. At the end of the day no one gives a sh#t about Wal-Mart, let alone fights for it. (cue a response about "Cheese Eating Surrender Monkeys" and "Freedom Fries" )

Nothing wrong with Propaganda, just when those issuing the stuff start beleiving their own Propoganda that the problems start.

PS, Just to say to EVERYONE - I do like a good "discussion", especially on stuff like this (I do find it interesting to see the other fella's viewpoint - even (especially) if I don't agree - and occassionally(!) I do learn stuff ) but I never find any problem in keeping this 100% seperate from other stuff - I appreciate that not everyone shares this attitude.......For me it is NEVER Personal.
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Old 14-01-2007, 04:05   #55
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How much you selling the Grinder for? and any Pics?
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Old 14-01-2007, 04:28   #56
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Xenophobia, chauvinism, prejudice, parochialism, bigotry, extreme nationalism, and/or fanatical patriotism generally occur in a state of ignorance - when the facts arenít known, examined, and/or understood.
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Old 14-01-2007, 05:47   #57
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Hey everyone. I think I've had my say on this thread. I just wanted to say like David did... of course this is an interesting aside from cruising. I have the same amount of respect for you guys as normal, even if you are Bush's right hand man. We're all cruisers here.

That said, I enjoyed reading all of the various perspectives, including Acoustic's. I agree even with Acoustic on many topics, despite our differences on some.

Also, I agree strongly with Kai Nui and his analysis of home prices vs. income. I take what he says, and extend it a bit to say that things are broken. It seems as though he has a belief that they can be fixed. I hope he's right.

Capt Jeff: I enjoyed your post as well. I should be clear though... I do indeed like the tribal form of anarchy, not a whole country. In fact, I'd rather see no countries and tribal forms in general.

Seafox: Not sure why having cd players, ipods, etc... makes our lives so much better than our grandparents'. I fail to see that conneciton. The goods they could buy on one salary, while sending kids to college, etc... were:

*A car without a loan
*A home
*Land
*All food and necessary items to raise larger famillies

Today, as Kai Nui points out, in the States, the average person can't even afford these things on 2 salaries. Anyway, it was a valuable post, as it provokes some thought.

Joli: Nice flag. Any facts behind your post, or are you just repeating what you were told to?

Anyway, this was a fantastic little thread. Great ideas by all. A special thanks to the moderators who let it continue, even though it's not on topic... sometimes, off topic rants can be interesting. In this case, it was also civil and well thought out by all involved. It shows the caliber of people we have on this board.
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Old 14-01-2007, 07:48   #58
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Whoooweee.... stay away for a week or two and now I have 4 pages of rant to catch up on....!!!

It's interesting to me to note that amid all the gripes about capitalism, no one has really put forth a good alternative. Human nature being what it is , take away the personal incentive and what have you got? Probably wouldn't be as many quality sailboats out there now would there......? We'd all be trying to sail that '53 Buick raft across the Florida straights...

I doubt the entrepeneurs - many from non-democratic countries - who immigrated to a democracy and became successful would support the argument that capitalism is designed to suppress the citizenry. (Is that a word??) Also interesting that most of us on this forum hail from democratic / capitalistic societies. There are just so many more boat options there eh?

So like most others, I'll wait to see the shining example of a non-capitalist system that takes care of its citizens better than the capitalists. Venezuela perhaps? Oh but before the phone company went private there it took up to 10 years to get a phone installed. Now Chavez plans to nationalize the phone system again... hmmm. Maybe I don't really need that phone though....

Someone said it in this thread - we all have choices. So "choose wisely grasshopper....."
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Old 14-01-2007, 08:34   #59
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Originally Posted by Joli
Travel to China, or India, or Europe, or South America and you'll see people have very few opportunities to get ahead.
I think the debatable point of that sentence would be defining the phrase "to get ahead". The quantitative meaning of that phrase ranges from securing food, clothing and shelter to achieving a fantasy lifestyle put forth by a marketing machine.

I have been traveling to China recently as part of my job. I can assure you that this is a country filled with opportunities and these opportunities are being grabbed with gusto. China is single-minded focused on eating the world's lunch, and they will achieve this in short order. This is not a land of limited opportunities. This was an eye-opener for me - the country is no longer that poor agricultural, red-army stifled, third world that continues in the popular perception. Instead, it is vibrant, purposeful, well-capitalized and much more market-driven than you can imagine. The people are working hard and making a better place for themselves - as individuals as well as a nation. The cities are as modern as Western ones. Few in China think they lack opportunities - fewer than in the US - although there is still a large portion of the country in remote rural places (this is a huge country with challenging terrain) that remain in a centuries-old economy and culture.

I also work closely with, and travel to Europe, as part of my job. I can assure you that they also have many opportunities to achieve what they feel is "getting ahead". In fact, most of them spend far more time with their families and on holiday, and view our lack of this as not having much opportunity in the US. But there are people in this forum who could better speak about that.

It certainly is a cultural perspective and, while I think that the US presents some of the largest opportunities in the world, I think that Americans often blind themselves to their own detriment with patriotism and unexamined beliefs.

(unfortunately, these traits of ours often impose themselves as detriments to other countries/cultures, but that is a different off-topic thread)

Mark
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Old 14-01-2007, 08:40   #60
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Well put, Mark.
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