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Old 07-11-2015, 10:55   #91
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

Thanks, MIke, well put. Someone earlier mentioned Henry Ford. His concept, IIRC, was to pay his workers enough so they could actually BUY the cars they made! How quaint. In an economy like ours which is 70% consumer driven, if the workers can't afford to buy stuff, what do the "fair market" crowd think will happen?

For the mods: this is part of the answer to the OP, which is economics 101, not politics.


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Originally Posted by Mike OReilly View Post
rognvald, we really can't get into this here or AVB will step in (probably rightly so). Briefly though, all you're doing is regurgitating the same old tired neoliberal/newcon talking points about how the economy supposedly works, not how it actually works. Two quick and obvious points:

#1. A $22/hr minimum wage today IS EXACTLY EQUIVALENT to what the minimum wage was through the 1950s, 60s and early 70s. You remember those times; the days of the greatest economic expansion any country has ever seen? And the effects minimum wage increases has been well studied. Evidence shows it does not radically disrupt or damage an economy.

#2. As we all know, productivity gains in the economy matched wage gains through to the early 1970s when your neoliberal capitalist cronies started to get their hands on government. It is after that time we began to see the two increasingly diverge. So it's not that there hasn't been sufficient wealth generated to have a $22/hr minimum wage (and the related rise in all other middle-class wages). It's just that all the benefits of this rising productivity has gone to those at the top.

#3. Labour costs as a proportion of total costs for most goods and services have been plummeting since the 1970s (no coincidence). This is due to the trend of #2, and accelerated by mechanization and off-shoring where labour can be more easily abused. Once again, it's the pursuit of the lowest price, at any cost, kind of mentality that has hollowed out the middle class and led to perpetual recession in western countries. No matter how much wealth is transferred to the rich, they can only buy so many hamburgers.

Finally, and as I've said, marine stuff costs what it costs b/c that is the price people are willing to pay. The price of most consumer goods in capitalist economies are only loosely based on actual input costs: materials, labour, profit, etc. This is especially apparent in small markets like boating goods.
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Old 07-11-2015, 11:05   #92
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

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Originally Posted by Mike OReilly View Post
rognvald, we really can't get into this here or AVB will step in (probably rightly so). Briefly though, all you're doing is regurgitating the same old tired neoliberal/newcon talking points about how the economy supposedly works, not how it actually works. Two quick and obvious points:



#1. A $22/hr minimum wage today IS EXACTLY EQUIVALENT to what the minimum wage was through the 1950s, 60s and early 70s. You remember those times; the days of the greatest economic expansion any country has ever seen? And the effects minimum wage increases has been well studied. Evidence shows it does not radically disrupt or damage an economy.



#2. As we all know, productivity gains in the economy matched wage gains through to the early 1970s when your neoliberal capitalist cronies started to get their hands on government. It is after that time we began to see the two increasingly diverge. So it's not that there hasn't been sufficient wealth generated to have a $22/hr minimum wage (and the related rise in all other middle-class wages). It's just that all the benefits of this rising productivity has gone to those at the top.



#3. Labour costs as a proportion of total costs for most goods and services have been plummeting since the 1970s (no coincidence). This is due to the trend of #2, and accelerated by mechanization and off-shoring where labour can be more easily abused. Once again, it's the pursuit of the lowest price, at any cost, kind of mentality that has hollowed out the middle class and led to perpetual recession in western countries. No matter how much wealth is transferred to the rich, they can only buy so many hamburgers.



Finally, and as I've said, marine stuff costs what it costs b/c that is the price people are willing to pay. The price of most consumer goods in capitalist economies are only loosely based on actual input costs: materials, labour, profit, etc. This is especially apparent in small markets like boating goods.

Absolutely correct, the rich are getting richer and the poor and middle class are going deeper into debt. Pure greed.


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Old 07-11-2015, 11:08   #93
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike OReilly View Post
rognvald, we really can't get into this here or AVB will step in (probably rightly so). Briefly though, all you're doing is regurgitating the same old tired neoliberal/newcon talking points about how the economy supposedly works, not how it actually works. Two quick and obvious points:

#1. A $22/hr minimum wage today IS EXACTLY EQUIVALENT to what the minimum wage was through the 1950s, 60s and early 70s. You remember those times; the days of the greatest economic expansion any country has ever seen? And the effects minimum wage increases has been well studied. Evidence shows it does not radically disrupt or damage an economy.

#2. As we all know, productivity gains in the economy matched wage gains through to the early 1970s when your neoliberal capitalist cronies started to get their hands on government. It is after that time we began to see the two increasingly diverge. So it's not that there hasn't been sufficient wealth generated to have a $22/hr minimum wage (and the related rise in all other middle-class wages). It's just that all the benefits of this rising productivity has gone to those at the top.

#3. Labour costs as a proportion of total costs for most goods and services have been plummeting since the 1970s (no coincidence). This is due to the trend of #2, and accelerated by mechanization and off-shoring where labour can be more easily abused. Once again, it's the pursuit of the lowest price, at any cost, kind of mentality that has hollowed out the middle class and led to perpetual recession in western countries. No matter how much wealth is transferred to the rich, they can only buy so many hamburgers.

Finally, and as I've said, marine stuff costs what it costs b/c that is the price people are willing to pay. The price of most consumer goods in capitalist economies are only loosely based on actual input costs: materials, labour, profit, etc. This is especially apparent in small markets like boating goods.

Mike,
Since you have labeled me a neoliberal/newcon(which would be nothing short of hilarious to those who know me), I'm sure AVB, being a fair man, would let me respond to your remarks. So, let it be stated I am not the above nor do the positions I have stated reflect those philosophies but rather a policy which is non-politcal and based upon sound and proven market economics. From your above response, readers well-schooled in economics will know that the argument you provided above has nothing to do with economics but rather with the failed social/economic policies of governments like Greece and our government in the last seven years that were based not upon sound principles of market economics but rather upon the principle of a liberal/socialist social agenda driving government economic policies. This describes your above response in a nutshell. Without a protracted discussion of successful market economies throughout History(which would certainly not be accepted by our moderator AVB), let it suffice to say that there has never been a government in the History of Man that has succeeded with your social agenda economics. I would challenge you to name one. Good luck and good sailing.
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Old 07-11-2015, 11:22   #94
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

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How can an oyster...

Oh, never mind.

Goodness, now I'm hungry too....oh the humanity
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Old 07-11-2015, 11:26   #95
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

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Originally Posted by rognvald View Post
... let it suffice to say that there has never been a government in the History of Man that has succeeded with your social agenda economics. I would challenge you to name one. Good luck and good sailing.
I won't even touch your supposed "non-political" comment. That's just bald-faced funny. But as for your challenge ... holy cow man, just look to any number of the most successful economies of northern Europe. Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Germany, and the USA of the 1950s to the 70s. There are definitely plenty of examples of successful democratic-socialist economies function here and now.

What you seem to misunderstand is that an economy serves the people, not the other way around. An economy is simply the collective description of how resources are distributed in a community. The rules of how this happens are written by government, and government in the US (and most other anglo-capitalist countries) have been hijacked by those with wealth. They have changed the rules to benefit them.

It's no surprise. It's an old story that keeps happening over and over again. This too will change back, but in the meantime, I'm going sailing (or motorcycling right now). Hope you are too
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Old 07-11-2015, 11:46   #96
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

"I won't even touch your supposed "non-political" comment. That's just bald-faced funny. But as for your challenge ... holy cow man, just look to any number of the most successful economies of northern Europe. Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Germany, and the USA of the 1950s to the 70s. There are definitely plenty of examples of successful democratic-socialist economies function here and now." Mike O'Reilly

Mike, that's just plain funny! I'm surprised you didn't throw Cuba in the mix! O.K. I get it. But let's not confuse your Socialist idea of economics(as YOU stated above) with market economics. The former is a principle of government while the latter is a principle of economics from the first time a man traded an axe for a piece of woven cloth to the successful operation of modern businesses large and small. By the way the tax rate of Germany is 50.52%; Norway is 42%; Sweden is 56.90%; Denmark is 55.60% and Finland is 51.50%. Successful economies? You must be a true Socialist if you think those taxes are fair. Good luck and good sailing . . . with a red flag, of course!
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Old 07-11-2015, 12:03   #97
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

I was raised wealthy without very much money. So to have the stuff that I wanted, I had to learn to make it, repair it, or modify it to make it into what I wanted. I was also raised to honor the good in used things. I've never had the slightest want to have a new car or a new boat. Because of this country's culture of needing everything to be new and cheap, there are tons of everything for almost no cost. I've been shopping garage sales for the last 40 years and I have outfitted myself with good tools and kitchen accessories and toys and cars and even my sail boat. So my wealth is in my head instead of my pocket. This life style has worked in some unexpected ways. I never get anything until it has been thoroughly tested. If it needs repair I saved not only on the ticket price but also I've placed more knowledge in my brain which is the same as money in most instances. It is also easy to get free information from books and the Google. So some more wealth. This life style does slow down a persons actions somewhat, but time is the one thing we are all given some of when we are born. However I should not advertise this style of living because everybody will want some and I will get poorer for the loss of my being able to buy all my used stuff. PS It is also easier to give away stuff that cost me pennies on the dollar. Mac
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Old 07-11-2015, 12:25   #98
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

Quote:
Originally Posted by rognvald View Post
. By the way the tax rate of Germany is 50.52%; Norway is 42%; Sweden is 56.90%; Denmark is 55.60% and Finland is 51.50%. Successful economies? You must be a true Socialist if you think those taxes are fair. Good luck and good sailing . . . with a red flag, of course!
So true, Why here in the USA we only spend roughly 40% to 50% percent (Fed, state, sales, property, gas, medical and SS) in taxes, depending on where you live. Look how well our schools and infrastructure are doing here. When you factor in all the taxes we pay, we are on average paying more then Norway and almost as much as Germany in total taxes. Go capitalism!
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Old 07-11-2015, 12:58   #99
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

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So true, Why here in the USA we only spend roughly 40% to 50% percent (Fed, state, sales, property, gas, medical and SS) in taxes, depending on where you live. Look how well our schools and infrastructure are doing here. When you factor in all the taxes we pay, we are on average paying more then Norway and almost as much as Germany in total taxes. Go capitalism!
SC,
We were talking about personal income tax which, in the US ,is roughly 40% for the highest wage earners. Most, do not pay anything close to that and many pay none at all. In 2009, 49% of American wage earners paid no personal income tax. That leaves about half of the total USA population to pay for the rest. We, however, have found a clever way to overcome this disparity by borrowing money from future generations to the tune of 19 trillion dollars and growing by another 2 trillion in 2016. The problem you mention with our schools and infrastructure is indeed despicable but is a direct result of corruption, unions and our unconscionable debt created by a government that cannot control spending through a reasonable budget and is like a kid in a candy store who hasn't eaten all day. Our country was founded by people who believed in NO taxes, limited government and states rights working within the confines of our Constitution and Bill of Rights. What we are left with today is a perverse, distorted monster that has left our founding fathers spinning in their graves. As a sidenote, it is a sad testament to education in the US that we are 28th in the world and most Americans have never read our Constitution, Bill of Rights and are completely ignorant of US History. As Jefferson so eloquently stated: "Without an intelligent electorate, Democracy is doomed to fail." Peace, Brothers and Sisters . . . Captain Rognvald in remission.
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Old 07-11-2015, 13:25   #100
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

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I was raised wealthy without very much money. So to have the stuff that I wanted, I had to learn to make it, repair it, or modify it to make it into what I wanted. I was also raised to honor the good in used things. I've never had the slightest want to have a new car or a new boat. Because of this country's culture of needing everything to be new and cheap, there are tons of everything for almost no cost. I've been shopping garage sales for the last 40 years and I have outfitted myself with good tools and kitchen accessories and toys and cars and even my sail boat. So my wealth is in my head instead of my pocket. This life style has worked in some unexpected ways. I never get anything until it has been thoroughly tested. If it needs repair I saved not only on the ticket price but also I've placed more knowledge in my brain which is the same as money in most instances. It is also easy to get free information from books and the Google. So some more wealth. This life style does slow down a persons actions somewhat, but time is the one thing we are all given some of when we are born. However I should not advertise this style of living because everybody will want some and I will get poorer for the loss of my being able to buy all my used stuff. PS It is also easier to give away stuff that cost me pennies on the dollar. Mac
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Old 07-11-2015, 13:29   #101
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

Just for a reality check my wife just returned to the work force part time. She gets $12 an hour which is sadly top dollar around here for part time work WITH a college degree.


I doubt there are any skilled carpenters or mechanics around here that make $22 an hour. Not saying they shouldn't, but if would be a major change.
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Old 07-11-2015, 13:54   #102
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

It's all about what your work is worth.
I work at home and make a decent living repairing sewing machines.
Often I hear customers say, "Don't ever stop! Nobody around here can do as good a job as you.
My customer base is extends from Olympia to the Canadian border and includes the San Juan Islands, and I don't have a college education.
What it boils down to is do you have a rather rare and valuable skill, or are you just one of the crowd?
Anyone can be taught to flip a hamburger and the cost of that labor has got to be reflected in the price of the product.
Math doesn't lie.
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Old 07-11-2015, 13:57   #103
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

Yes, but thanks to the Catholic church and nice do gooders like Bill Gates we have a whole bunch of extra people around that can't just repair sewing machines!
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Old 07-11-2015, 14:21   #104
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

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Originally Posted by rognvald View Post
SC,

We were talking about personal income tax which, in the US ,is roughly 40% for the highest wage earners. Most, do not pay anything close to that and many pay none at all. In 2009, 49% of American wage earners paid no personal income tax. That leaves about half of the total USA population to pay for the rest. We, however, have found a clever way to overcome this disparity by borrowing money from future generations to the tune of 19 trillion dollars and growing by another 2 trillion in 2016. The problem you mention with our schools and infrastructure is indeed despicable but is a direct result of corruption, unions and our unconscionable debt created by a government that cannot control spending through a reasonable budget and is like a kid in a candy store who hasn't eaten all day. Our country was founded by people who believed in NO taxes, limited government and states rights working within the confines of our Constitution and Bill of Rights. What we are left with today is a perverse, distorted monster that has left our founding fathers spinning in their graves. As a sidenote, it is a sad testament to education in the US that we are 28th in the world and most Americans have never read our Constitution, Bill of Rights and are completely ignorant of US History. As Jefferson so eloquently stated: "Without an intelligent electorate, Democracy is doomed to fail." Peace, Brothers and Sisters . . . Captain Rognvald in remission.

I don't think you understood sailorchic34's post. I believe she was stating that once we, the people in the US pay for all the benefits the people in the so called "socialist" countries receive with their higher taxes we are on equal grounds as far as money out of our pockets. Only what we receive isn't the same quality as what they receive.


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Old 07-11-2015, 14:23   #105
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Re: Stupid, Ridiculous Prices for Stuff

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I see. Well, on the bright side: Welcome to back home to the USA, where people can be wealthy enough to afford to buy $15,000 sails for their Oyster 53 while being so ignorant that they think the government doles out free cell phones, and proud enough of their ignorance that they flaunt it in rants about how tough life in America is for the wealthy.
Two comments... The US government actually does give out free cell phones, just ask most of my next door neighbors; they all have one or two or three. Or, look it up online yourself. I believe over 10,000,000 have been distributed along with 350 minutes of free usage per month.

Second.... My wife and I work for an hourly wage as Registered Nurses as most on this forum are already aware. Sooo.... Registered Nurses are now considered wealthy? Wow! That's certainly news to us.
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