Paizo Top Nav Branding
  • Hello, Guest! |
  • Sign In |
  • My Account |
  • Shopping Cart |
  • Help/FAQ
About Paizo Messageboards News Paizo Blog Help/FAQ
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
Pathfinder Society

Pathfinder Beginner Box

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Pathfinder Comics

Pathfinder Legends

Government folly


Off-Topic Discussions

51 to 100 of 2,076 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | next > last >>
Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Bitter Thorn wrote:

Major Government, Military Corruption, Trillions Missing at Defense Department

Wouldn't surprise me. Those Army and Air Force dudes are always losing money. ;)


Apparently, Kelly and the Sexy Stud is making an appearance.

Andoran

Urizen wrote:
Apparently, Kelly and the Sexy Stud is making an appearance.

Oooh, cake!

Taldor

Urizen wrote:
Apparently, Kelly and the Sexy Stud is making an appearance.

look out, it's pillowpants! that's at least a CR8


rawr.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

I removed some posts. Chill, people.

Taldor

Anyone see that story about how we have to pay subsidies to Brazil's cotton farmers?


Ross Byers wrote:
I removed some posts. Chill, people.

Damnit, Byers! Now my reference makes no sense! You ruined my foil to deflate anger. Now you've only awaken mine. *shakes fist*

<scribbles down another entry in his conspiracy journal....next to J'thulhu Jacobs...>

Taldor

Urizen wrote:
Ross Byers wrote:
I removed some posts. Chill, people.

Damnit, Byers! Now my reference makes no sense! You ruined my foil to deflate anger. Now you've only awaken mine. *shakes fist*

<scribbles down another entry in his conspiracy journal....next to J'thulhu Jacobs...>

Hah your foil had no meaning in the first place as in order to upset me you have to be talking about paladins in the beta boards, otherwise, I am impossible to actually anger. I guess my posts came off harsh instead of light hearted jabs though as they were removed.

Taldor

lastknightleft wrote:
Hah your foil had no meaning in the first place as in order to upset me you have to be talking about paladins in the beta boards, otherwise, I am impossible to actually anger. I guess my posts came off harsh instead of light hearted jabs though as they were removed.

Norweges are better and smarter than you, you redneck Floridian swamp Gnome.

[How was that?]


I work for the US government.

Where I work, the facility has a large number of trades (sheet metal workers, electricians, electronics, welders, laggers, etc.), each of which is under its own code/department.

After I had been there less than a year, I was loaned to work for another department while mine was very low on work. While there, the facility implemented its new "lean" program in order to reduce waste.

The gist was that each code would produce a lean team which would spend time figuring out ways to save money at all the individual job-sites and in the individual job processes. Then, they would use the on-site workers to implement these changes.

The code I was loaned to (sheet metal workers, I was normally in electronics but was in the apprentice program at the time and thus could be more easily moved around...) had a facility wide meeting of its members. There, I learned that it had I believe 11 workers who had been assigned full-time to work in the lean program looking for ways to cut costs and helping to iplement those changes. It dawned on me that after calculating the total cost of a worker (in the facilty this is something like three times the hourly wage after calculating in overhead and benefits...) this single code was spending something like 1.5 million dollars every year (in dedicated personnel alone) just looking for ways to reduce costs. This was besides money and time that would need to be spent/allocated to bring about any changes. Considering that these costs would be incurred every year, it is not very practical that the money spent can actually be recouped.

That is the government: spend an enormous amount of money just to look for ways to save money.


Bitter Thorn wrote:
Xpltvdeleted wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:
Xpltvdeleted wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:

Free Stuff From Sam I just got a free golf cart.

Unless I missed it, this article left something out that the original included...after he got his free golf cart (presumably to prove a point) he donated it to charity, thereby claiming a second tax break for a charitable donation. Hypocracy thy name is fiscal conservatism.
LOL! He didn't make the rules, or lobby for them. Playing by the rules makes him a hypocrite?
He lobbies against wasteful government spending, then propogates that spending by "playing by the rules" (or following orders if you will). He is a hypocrite by playing the "do as i say, not as i do" game.

I think your logic is flawed.

Individuals and the markets they comprise respond to incentives and disincentives. You can call that gaming the system, but in many cases these laws invite it.

Maybe new legislation should be edited by the optimization boards to see if they are broken or unbalanced. ;)

You have never said a truer word. People do behave in accordance to incentives and disincentives. Which is why charity does not truely work to deal with large scale issues.

When you and i both see a staving child, if you do not help the child, I am disincentivised to help him.

Why? Because you can store the energy it requires to care for the child, giving you a competative advantage over me. As a result, unless the child shares most of my genes, your genes propagate faster than mine. The reverse is true also.

So, you going to make the first move and help the child?

Andoran

The Thing from Beyond the Edge wrote:

I work for the US government.

Where I work, the facility has a large number of trades (sheet metal workers, electricians, electronics, welders, laggers, etc.), each of which is under its own code/department.

After I had been there less than a year, I was loaned to work for another department while mine was very low on work. While there, the facility implemented its new "lean" program in order to reduce waste.

The gist was that each code would produce a lean team which would spend time figuring out ways to save money at all the individual job-sites and in the individual job processes. Then, they would use the on-site workers to implement these changes.

The code I was loaned to (sheet metal workers, I was normally in electronics but was in the apprentice program at the time and thus could be more easily moved around...) had a facility wide meeting of its members. There, I learned that it had I believe 11 workers who had been assigned full-time to work in the lean program looking for ways to cut costs and helping to iplement those changes. It dawned on me that after calculating the total cost of a worker (in the facilty this is something like three times the hourly wage after calculating in overhead and benefits...) this single code was spending something like 1.5 million dollars every year (in dedicated personnel alone) just looking for ways to reduce costs. This was besides money and time that would need to be spent/allocated to bring about any changes. Considering that these costs would be incurred every year, it is not very practical that the money spent can actually be recouped.

That is the government: spend an enormous amount of money just to look for ways to save money.

Every big company does lean, and yes your facility might have been spending that extra money looking for ways to save money, but once the changes are implemented across the board, the savings can be huge. I did something similar to this at my job. We use PDAs to enter work order data. PDAs have a horrible data entry method called graffiti (if you're not familiar); it's inaccurate and you spend as much time correcting mistakes as you do entering data. I decided to try using a bluetooth wireless keyboard for data entry instead and ran a study with several technicians. I found that an average technician would save 1 hour per month using the keyboard instead of graffiti. This doesn't seem like alot, but when you have 750 technicians that are all using this technology, and their fully burdened hourly rate is $28 and change, that adds up quick ($256,000/year savings). These are the types of things lean looks for. You can't just say "we spent $1.5 million a year trying to save money." You have to look at the bigger picture and extrapolate the savings you have discovered to an entire workforce...that $1.5 million/year pays for itself real quick when you take into account all factors.


Xpltvdeleted wrote:
The Thing from Beyond the Edge wrote:

I work for the US government.

Where I work, the facility has a large number of trades (sheet metal workers, electricians, electronics, welders, laggers, etc.), each of which is under its own code/department.

After I had been there less than a year, I was loaned to work for another department while mine was very low on work. While there, the facility implemented its new "lean" program in order to reduce waste.

The gist was that each code would produce a lean team which would spend time figuring out ways to save money at all the individual job-sites and in the individual job processes. Then, they would use the on-site workers to implement these changes.

The code I was loaned to (sheet metal workers, I was normally in electronics but was in the apprentice program at the time and thus could be more easily moved around...) had a facility wide meeting of its members. There, I learned that it had I believe 11 workers who had been assigned full-time to work in the lean program looking for ways to cut costs and helping to iplement those changes. It dawned on me that after calculating the total cost of a worker (in the facilty this is something like three times the hourly wage after calculating in overhead and benefits...) this single code was spending something like 1.5 million dollars every year (in dedicated personnel alone) just looking for ways to reduce costs. This was besides money and time that would need to be spent/allocated to bring about any changes. Considering that these costs would be incurred every year, it is not very practical that the money spent can actually be recouped.

That is the government: spend an enormous amount of money just to look for ways to save money.

Every big company does lean, and yes your facility might have been spending that extra money looking for ways to save money, but once the changes are implemented across the board, the savings can be huge. I did something similar to this at my job. We use PDAs to enter work...

I know that you can't just say "we spent $1.5 million a year trying to save money." I know exactly what lean does do and is supposed to do. And, in many cases, lean is a very good thing. So, do not presume to assume that I am not looking at the bigger picture.

The numbers in an industrial environment often do not add up the way they appear to with simple calculations.

The difference is that in an industrial environment (when compared to data entry) is that there are hundreds of small individual tasks that are performed as well as well as scores of varied complex tasks. All this for just one code. With data entry, time can be nickeled and dimed and added up to save a lot of time. ten minutes here and there can be used to add multiple entries. But, with work evolutions involving the moving and installation of equipment, saving ten minutes with each of the ten workers that will be involved may look as if it will save an hour but it will not. Very often, each worker will not be able to participate in another evolution during those "saved" ten minutes of time. You can't pick up a piece of equipment with a crane and leave it hanging in the air. Many times, if you do not have the time to perform a task, it cannot be done. Time is lost. All that nickel and diming does not add up so easily as it might for something such as data entry. Finally, not only do the numbers often not match up for a single code, there may be a couple score codes to deal with which will be spending a total of roughly 60 million dollars every year looking for ways to reduce waste. Year after year. Processes can only be leaned so much and then continued spending does not bring about further benefits.

Further, the necessity to continue to find improvements leads to self-sustaining jobs. The lean personnel help keep their jobs by "finding" things to fix and that often results in misrepresenting of calculations and improvements. In fact, I have witnessed first hand the misrepresenting of numbers in this case. I was part of an antenna repair shop before I removed to RADIAC calibrations. We were very efficient and performed our work in less than the time allotted by the contract. When we went through lean, the lean personnel tried to show how valuable their streamlining contributions were (the money they were "saving" the yard) by comparing the new "expected time" to the old "contract standard time" rather than comparing it to the time we actually completed the work in before the changes. Their calculations showed them as bringing about enormous savings when the actual contribution was negligible. Self-sustaining jobs at work.


Zombieneighbours wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:
Xpltvdeleted wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:
Xpltvdeleted wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:

Free Stuff From Sam I just got a free golf cart.

Unless I missed it, this article left something out that the original included...after he got his free golf cart (presumably to prove a point) he donated it to charity, thereby claiming a second tax break for a charitable donation. Hypocracy thy name is fiscal conservatism.
LOL! He didn't make the rules, or lobby for them. Playing by the rules makes him a hypocrite?
He lobbies against wasteful government spending, then propogates that spending by "playing by the rules" (or following orders if you will). He is a hypocrite by playing the "do as i say, not as i do" game.

I think your logic is flawed.

Individuals and the markets they comprise respond to incentives and disincentives. You can call that gaming the system, but in many cases these laws invite it.

Maybe new legislation should be edited by the optimization boards to see if they are broken or unbalanced. ;)

You have never said a truer word. People do behave in accordance to incentives and disincentives. Which is why charity does not truely work to deal with large scale issues.

When you and i both see a staving child, if you do not help the child, I am disincentivised to help him.

Why? Because you can store the energy it requires to care for the child, giving you a competative advantage over me. As a result, unless the child shares most of my genes, your genes propagate faster than mine. The reverse is true also.

So, you going to make the first move and help the child?

Well, yes.

I understand the logic of your statement in the abstract, but the only way I see it applying to the choices in my life would be at the very extremes. My daughter is a self sufficient adult, so my life choices for good or ill don't subtract from her subsistence. Obviously she came before everyone else when she was my sole responsibility, but even then we took in stray dogs, cats, kids, and friends. I'm frugal and industrious, and I've let quite a few people stay with me until they could get on their feet or they did something bad to me. This might cut into my budget for pool, gaming, or beer, but I've never viewed it a "competitive disadvantage". I view it as a personal choice for how I opt to use my own resources. I would like to think that I have had a direct positive impact in quite a few peoples lives, but maybe I'm fooling myself, and it's all a sick pointless joke. I haven't reached that level of cynicism and hopelessness just yet though.

Not surprisingly, I'm not a church going kind of guy, but I have a number of friends who are, and they have devoted a lot more of their lives to direct charity than I. I have seen the efficacy and efficiency of these nimble, flexible, and local programs. I have also witnessed first hand a vast amount of waste and stupidity in the big government systems, and I've seen a horrifying human cost in systems like foster care and SSI. Obviously experience is anecdotal, but we tend to be products of our experience.

Hopefully this is a cogent response to your question, and I didn't miss your point entirely.


How the Drug War in Afghanistan Undermines America’s War on Terror 11-10-2004

We've know this for a while.


GFZ


Simply put, politics is not about the common good, appealing to men’s better angels, nor serving our Lord. These may be your motivations. I pray they are mine. Occasionally, they will be a politician’s motivation.

Politics is the adjudication of power. It is the process by which people everywhere determine who rules whom.

In America, through a brilliant system of rewards and punishments, checks and balances, and diffusion of authority, we have acquired a habit and history of politics mostly without violence and excessive corruption.

The good news for you and me is that the system works.

The bad news is it is hard, and sometimes unpleasant work, for us to succeed in enacting policy.

There is absolutely no reason for you to spend your time, talent, and money in politics except for this: If you do not, laws will be written and regulations enforced by folks with little or no interest in your well-being.


Bitter Thorn wrote:

Well, yes.

I understand the logic of your statement in the abstract, but the only way I see it applying to the choices in my life would be at the very extremes. My daughter is a self sufficient adult, so my life choices for good or ill don't subtract from her subsistence. Obviously she came before everyone else when she was my sole responsibility, but even then we took in stray dogs, cats, kids, and friends. I'm frugal and industrious, and I've let quite a few people stay with me until they could get on their feet or they did something bad to me. This might cut into my budget for pool, gaming, or beer, but I've never viewed it a "competitive disadvantage". I view it as a personal choice for how I opt to use my own resources. I would like to think that I have had a direct positive impact in quite a few peoples lives, but maybe I'm fooling myself, and it's all a sick pointless joke. I haven't reached that level of cynicism and hopelessness just yet though.

However, you choose to view it, it is a competative advantage, we are in competation.

You seem convinced that charity can fill the roles of government. Why isn't it already doing so? You have a gaming budget, why arn't you using that to help local homeless people?
In the US and the UK we have an gross abundance of wealth, why is it that we still have a homelessness, when if we really wanted to make the situation better, we could wipe out child poverty and homelessness tomorrow and still be relatively wealthy, even with the level of tax burdon we have.

Do you really beleive that a 1% drop in taxes would result in anything other than the vast majority of that money being spent on luxuary goods?

If you do, i would love to see what evidence the view is based upon.

Bitter Thorn wrote:


Not surprisingly, I'm not a church going kind of guy, but I have a number of friends who are, and they have devoted a lot more of their lives to direct charity than I. I have seen the efficacy and efficiency of these nimble, flexible, and local programs. I have also witnessed first hand a vast amount of waste and stupidity in the big government systems, and I've seen a horrifying human cost in systems like foster care and SSI. Obviously experience is anecdotal, but we tend to be products of our experience.

Hopefully this is a cogent response to your question, and I didn't miss your point entirely.

I've worked in the volentary sector, and while it is true that small local groups can be Nimble and flexable, they can be as prone to mismanagement and waste as any other organisiation. I helped to run a program for six months with what amounted to no service users, in an organisiation that got its funding form non-governmental sources.

In contrast, the most successful project i ever worked on was a higher education funding council for England summer school where we drastically increased university uptake amongst school leaver from families who had never had members attend university. HEFCE is funded by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

Sure government bureaucracy can fail us. But so can charities, businesses, family, friends and neighbours. All of these can be be wasteful, all of these can contain systemic failing. But you do not call for the disolution of these institutions? Ironically, governments have far more accountablity than any of these other institutions.


Bitter Thorn wrote:
Politics is the adjudication of power.

That's a cogent (albeit somewhat obvious) point from 1st-year government class, that doesn't hurt to be repeated. I do wonder at the author's need to festoon it with right-wing catch-phrases like "liberal media," "homosexual lobby," and of course the obligatory invocation of Ronald Reagan. Maybe that's the only way to get across to some people -- I don't know. I'll try it with my brother some time: "Would you right-wing conspiracy like to fascist oppressors go out care for the downtrodden for Chinese food?"


Zombieneighbours wrote:


When you and i both see a staving child, if you do not help the child, I am disincentivised to help him.

Why? Because you can store the energy it requires to care for the child, giving you a competative advantage over me. As a result, unless the child shares most of my genes, your genes propagate faster than mine. The reverse is true also.

So, you going to make the first move and help the child?

Actually what happens to said starving child depends a great deal on who is nearest to the starving child. We help people who are suffering mainly based around proximity. If some one is close to an accident victim then it becomes their responsibility while people far from the scene or arriving much later tend to simply watch.

If you physically encounter a starving child you probably feed it but if its remote then its some one else's problem.

Evolutionarily speaking the process makes sense since any individual you would likely have come across was probably related. Even the young of the evil tribe over the hill are probably helped....since that evil tribe spends most of its time stealing your women...and your tribe reciprocates.


Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
Zombieneighbours wrote:


When you and i both see a staving child, if you do not help the child, I am disincentivised to help him.

Why? Because you can store the energy it requires to care for the child, giving you a competative advantage over me. As a result, unless the child shares most of my genes, your genes propagate faster than mine. The reverse is true also.

So, you going to make the first move and help the child?

Actually what happens to said starving child depends a great deal on who is nearest to the starving child. We help people who are suffering mainly based around proximity. If some one is close to an accident victim then it becomes their responsibility while people far from the scene or arriving much later tend to simply watch.

If you physically encounter a starving child you probably feed it but if its remote then its some one else's problem.

Evolutionarily speaking the process makes sense since any individual you would likely have come across was probably related. Even the young of the evil tribe over the hill are probably helped....since that evil tribe spends most of its time stealing your women...and your tribe reciprocates.

I presume the notion of proximity is more like exposure in the electronic age? For example Haiti seems much closer when it's on every channel 24/7, but when the news cycle is done it seems much further away.


Bitter Thorn wrote:


I presume the notion of proximity is more like exposure in the electronic age? For example Haiti seems much closer when it's on every channel 24/7, but when the news cycle is done it seems much further away.

I'm sure exposure has some meaning and its playing to the same elements but its not the same thing. If your in Haiti during the disaster you go out and start digging people up - if your just seeing it on the news you may or may not donate. Certainly charities do everything in their power to hit your psyche in their advertising so if they want you to donate to starving children they don't really spend too much time telling you about the issue - instead they introduce you to a very specific child since your much more likely to donate to help some individual child then you are to help 'save hundreds of thousands' of nameless faceless children.

What I'm really talking about here is something called the Bystander Effect.


Kirth Gersen wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:
Politics is the adjudication of power.
That's a cogent (albeit somewhat obvious) point from 1st-year government class, that doesn't hurt to be repeated. I do wonder at the author's need to festoon it with right-wing catch-phrases like "liberal media," "homosexual lobby," and of course the obligatory invocation of Ronald Reagan. Maybe that's the only way to get across to some people -- I don't know. I'll try it with my brother some time: "Would you right-wing conspiracy like to fascist oppressors go out care for the downtrodden for Chinese food?"

That might work pretty well in Midland county.

In Colorado it's a mixed bag, but it does tend to speak to the core of people who are likely to become seriously involved in the process. This is beginning to change though. The more libertarian minded minority is getting larger, stronger, and more vocal in the GOP. We used to be a very small vocal minority, and I think the party thought we might go away after '08. Religious conservatives seem to be proportionately less energized this year but fiscal conservatives/libertarians are highly motivated, so we actually comprised a greater percentage than '08 at the county level. The state assembly should be interesting.


Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:


I presume the notion of proximity is more like exposure in the electronic age? For example Haiti seems much closer when it's on every channel 24/7, but when the news cycle is done it seems much further away.

I'm sure exposure has some meaning and its playing to the same elements but its not the same thing. If your in Haiti during the disaster you go out and start digging people up - if your just seeing it on the news you may or may not donate. Certainly charities do everything in their power to hit your psyche in their advertising so if they want you to donate to starving children they don't really spend too much time telling you about the issue - instead they introduce you to a very specific child since your much more likely to donate to help some individual child then you are to help 'save hundreds of thousands' of nameless faceless children.

What I'm really talking about here is something called the Bystander Effect.

Interesting. I get this in the abstract, but this tends to work differently in my region. There are tens of thousands of combat vets on top of a lot of other well trained first responders here in Colorado Springs. I grew up in west Texas, so it freaked me out that people didn't automatically stop to help a lady with a flat tire. OTOH, it's not uncommon at all for a "civilian" to begin emergency treatment with their own trauma kit before emergency services arrives in this county.


Zombieneighbours wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:

Well, yes.

I understand the logic of your statement in the abstract, but the only way I see it applying to the choices in my life would be at the very extremes. My daughter is a self sufficient adult, so my life choices for good or ill don't subtract from her subsistence. Obviously she came before everyone else when she was my sole responsibility, but even then we took in stray dogs, cats, kids, and friends. I'm frugal and industrious, and I've let quite a few people stay with me until they could get on their feet or they did something bad to me. This might cut into my budget for pool, gaming, or beer, but I've never viewed it a "competitive disadvantage". I view it as a personal choice for how I opt to use my own resources. I would like to think that I have had a direct positive impact in quite a few peoples lives, but maybe I'm fooling myself, and it's all a sick pointless joke. I haven't reached that level of cynicism and hopelessness just yet though.

However, you choose to view it, it is a competative advantage, we are in competation.

You seem convinced that charity can fill the roles of government. Why isn't it already doing so? You have a gaming budget, why arn't you using that to help local homeless people?
In the US and the UK we have an gross abundance of wealth, why is it that we still have a homelessness, when if we really wanted to make the situation better, we could wipe out child poverty and homelessness tomorrow and still be relatively wealthy, even with the level of tax burdon we have.

Do you really beleive that a 1% drop in taxes would result in anything other than the vast majority of that money being spent on luxuary goods?

If you do, i would love to see what evidence the view is based upon.

I fail to see how we are in a competition (beyond ideology). When I choose to let a terminally ill friend stay with we for a year or two that required a lot of sacrifices. I just fail to comprehend how that diminishes me in relation to you. I simply don't see how this is a zero sum comparison. I'm not trying to be obtuse. I just don't see it the way you do.

Of course I'm skeptical of your assertion that we could wipe out homelessness and child poverty without raising taxes. We've been hearing these claims for longer than I have been alive, and we've spent trillions of tax dollars on social welfare spending here in the US yet we still have lots of poverty.

I think that a 1% drop in tax means that billions of dollars could be used by folks who earned it rather than a corrupt and incompetent state. I think that is a virtue in itself.


Zombieneighbours wrote:

I've worked in the volentary sector, and while it is true that small local groups can be Nimble and flexable, they can be as prone to mismanagement and waste as any other organisiation. I helped to run a program for six months with what amounted to no service users, in an organisiation that got its funding form non-governmental sources.

In contrast, the most successful project i ever worked on was a higher education funding council for England summer school where we drastically increased university uptake amongst school leaver from families who had never had members attend university. HEFCE is funded by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

Sure government bureaucracy can fail us. But so can charities, businesses, family, friends and neighbours. All of these can be be wasteful, all of these can contain systemic failing. But you do not call for the disolution of these institutions? Ironically, governments have far more accountablity than any of these other institutions.

Our experiences are radically different.

I don't call for the dissolution of voluntary adult interactions.

I would argue that governments have vastly less accountability. If the food bank I support is wasteful or stupid I support another one. If they are not transparent enough for my liking I support another one.

When my federal government is corrupt, wasteful, and inefficient they are a bit tougher to replace.

I can't fathom how you think government is more accountable than private charity.


Bitter Thorn wrote:


Interesting. I get this in the abstract, but this tends to work differently in my region. There are tens of thousands of combat vets on top of a lot of other well trained first responders here in Colorado Springs. I grew up in west Texas, so it freaked me out that people didn't automatically stop to help a lady with a flat tire. OTOH, it's not uncommon at all for a "civilian" to begin emergency treatment with their own trauma kit before emergency services arrives in this county.

No surprise here either though I'm unaware of a catchy title for what your talking about. That said its certainly true that people that are trained and qualified to act in certain situations generally will do so. Likely especially true of those with military training where you'd have been trained that its absolutely your job to intervene in such circumstances and simply expect to move into such a situation and take control to get what needs doing done.

No doubt nearly anyone trained in emergency response behaves this way.

I'm also hopeful that we, as a society, are more likely to act in part because of well publicized failures in the past but I have no evidence one way or another to determine if its actually true.


Bitter Thorn wrote:


Our experiences are radically different.

I don't call for the dissolution of voluntary adult interactions.

I would argue that governments have vastly less accountability. If the food bank I support is wasteful or stupid I support another one. If they are not transparent enough for my liking I support another one.

When my federal government is corrupt, wasteful, and inefficient they are a bit tougher to replace.

I can't fathom how you think government is more accountable than private charity.

Private charity does not usually involve voting for one. Nor are the media searching high and low for any sign of corruption (or better yet sex scandal) so that they can put it in the media and and have lots of sales.

What really blows my mind however is how much Americans seem to loath their government and are certain its corrupt and incompetent. I mean America is the leader of most of the organizations of which the western world is a part. Now most citizens of most states in the western world simply do not view their government with this much animosity. We understand that there is corruption and incompetence but feel that these cases are the exception to the rule and that most of the time the mandarins are doing a pretty good job with our (usually higher) tax dollars.

Hence if the American people are certain that their government is incompetent at best and completely corrupt at worst should we not be excluding you from such organizations as a failed state?

Certainly I find this contrast pretty striking and its something one only really notices from hanging out on message boards. Huge numbers of Americans really deeply do not trust their government or its institutions and you just don't get this when dealing with Brit's, the French or Danes or nearly any other member of the western world - at least the developed western world.

Get out to Eastern Europe and things start to change.


Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:


Our experiences are radically different.

I don't call for the dissolution of voluntary adult interactions.

I would argue that governments have vastly less accountability. If the food bank I support is wasteful or stupid I support another one. If they are not transparent enough for my liking I support another one.

When my federal government is corrupt, wasteful, and inefficient they are a bit tougher to replace.

I can't fathom how you think government is more accountable than private charity.

Private charity does not usually involve voting for one. Nor are the media searching high and low for any sign of corruption (or better yet sex scandal) so that they can put it in the media and and have lots of sales.

What really blows my mind however is how much Americans seem to loath their government and are certain its corrupt and incompetent. I mean America is the leader of most of the organizations of which the western world is a part. Now most citizens of most states in the western world simply do not view their government with this much animosity. We understand that there is corruption and incompetence but feel that these cases are the exception to the rule and that most of the time the mandarins are doing a pretty good job with our (usually higher) tax dollars.

Hence if the American people are certain that their government is incompetent at best and completely corrupt at worst should we not be excluding you from such organizations as a failed state?

Certainly I find this contrast pretty striking and its something one only really notices from hanging out on message boards. Huge numbers of Americans really deeply do not trust their government or its institutions and you just don't get this when dealing with Brit's, the French or Danes or nearly any other member of the western world - at least the developed western world.

Get out to Eastern Europe and things start to change.

It's not like the media does much to expose the corruption of individual politicians or government organizations in America unless the media opposes those individuals or the story is fairly salacious.


Reform of our financial services industry is going to be a failure.


Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:


Our experiences are radically different.

I don't call for the dissolution of voluntary adult interactions.

I would argue that governments have vastly less accountability. If the food bank I support is wasteful or stupid I support another one. If they are not transparent enough for my liking I support another one.

When my federal government is corrupt, wasteful, and inefficient they are a bit tougher to replace.

I can't fathom how you think government is more accountable than private charity.

Private charity does not usually involve voting for one. Nor are the media searching high and low for any sign of corruption (or better yet sex scandal) so that they can put it in the media and and have lots of sales.

What really blows my mind however is how much Americans seem to loath their government and are certain its corrupt and incompetent. I mean America is the leader of most of the organizations of which the western world is a part. Now most citizens of most states in the western world simply do not view their government with this much animosity. We understand that there is corruption and incompetence but feel that these cases are the exception to the rule and that most of the time the mandarins are doing a pretty good job with our (usually higher) tax dollars.

Hence if the American people are certain that their government is incompetent at best and completely corrupt at worst should we not be excluding you from such organizations as a failed state?

Certainly I find this contrast pretty striking and its something one only really notices from hanging out on message boards. Huge numbers of Americans really deeply do not trust their government or its institutions and you just don't get this when dealing with Brit's, the French or Danes or nearly any other member of the western world - at least the developed western world.

Get out to Eastern Europe and things start to change.

I don't know how this plays in other countries, but I think part of this is also a reflection of lower levels of confidence in all of our institutions.

Government, media, religion, business, science, education, family, military, and I'm sure many other institutions have had their incompetence, vulnerability, and/or corruption exposed more over the years. It seems natural that people would trust all of these institutions less and less as they learn more about them.


Corruption, Torture, Criminal and Human Rights Violations
by
Officials and Judiciary of the States of the United States

Andoran

Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:


Our experiences are radically different.

I don't call for the dissolution of voluntary adult interactions.

I would argue that governments have vastly less accountability. If the food bank I support is wasteful or stupid I support another one. If they are not transparent enough for my liking I support another one.

When my federal government is corrupt, wasteful, and inefficient they are a bit tougher to replace.

I can't fathom how you think government is more accountable than private charity.

Private charity does not usually involve voting for one. Nor are the media searching high and low for any sign of corruption (or better yet sex scandal) so that they can put it in the media and and have lots of sales.

What really blows my mind however is how much Americans seem to loath their government and are certain its corrupt and incompetent. I mean America is the leader of most of the organizations of which the western world is a part. Now most citizens of most states in the western world simply do not view their government with this much animosity. We understand that there is corruption and incompetence but feel that these cases are the exception to the rule and that most of the time the mandarins are doing a pretty good job with our (usually higher) tax dollars.

Hence if the American people are certain that their government is incompetent at best and completely corrupt at worst should we not be excluding you from such organizations as a failed state?

Certainly I find this contrast pretty striking and its something one only really notices from hanging out on message boards. Huge numbers of Americans really deeply do not trust their government or its institutions and you just don't get this when dealing with Brit's, the French or Danes or nearly any other member of the western world - at least the developed western world.

Get out to Eastern Europe and things start to change.

I think you have to understand the difference between the American psyche and the European psyche. We are populated, for the most part, by peoples who couldn't stand where they were. European nations are populated, for the most part, by peoples who've been, ancestrally, on the same piece of turf for going on five hundred to two thousand years. Most American families, on the other hand, have only been American for four or five generations (considering that the original British colonists' spawn are a very small minority of Americans these days).

And, frankly, many of the European immigrants who flocked to America didn't trust or like the governments in their homelands.

Heck, even basic concepts like "freedom" mean different things from an American or European viewpoint.

European nations evolved from feudalism through limited monarchies to democracies (or totalitarian regimes to democracies, in the case of Eastern Europe and Spain, post WW2). America was born in blood spilled because of an inherent distrust in government. Our Constitution was framed around the premise that government is corrupt and had to be limited in scope and power. Distrust of government is in our DNA in a way it isn't in Europe.

So, it isn't terribly strange that we, as a people, generally have a distasteful view of our government and institutions. From my observations serving in the military, even most soldiers feel they serve Americans (the People) and have little love for America (the government).

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
"Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
What really blows my mind however is how much Americans seem to loath their government and are certain its corrupt and incompetent.

Only because I work for it. :)


Bitter Thorn wrote:


I fail to see how we are in a competition (beyond ideology). When I choose to let a terminally ill friend stay with we for a year or two that required a lot of sacrifices. I just fail to comprehend how that diminishes me in relation to you. I simply don't see how this is a zero sum comparison. I'm not trying to be obtuse. I just don't see it the way you do.

Jobs, resources, sexual partners, territory....We are competing for all these and more. You don't see it because you live in one of the richest countries in the world, in a time when resources are still relatively plentiful, if declining. Perhapes you'd notice it more if you lived else where and had been involved in food riots.

The point is, if it is true that is is okay to cheat the system for the gulf buggy, why isn't it okay to cheat the system for your own benifit here.

Bitter Thorn wrote:


Of course I'm skeptical of your assertion that we could wipe out homelessness and child poverty without raising taxes. We've been hearing these claims for longer than I have been alive, and we've spent trillions of tax dollars on social welfare spending here in the US yet we still have lots of poverty.

In the UK we have 840,000 listed empty homes and 84,900 households known to be homeless.

If society as a whole was moved to do something about the issue and acted on the issue, those empty homes could be filled withing a few months, without tax expenditure, simply by each person giving what they can, in time, effort and material. The causes of homelessness are harder to deal with, but there is no reason, other than the failure of society to ensure it, that people should not have somewhere to sleep and call their own.

I am sure if you ask anyone here, they would say that homelessness is a dreadful thing, that we want to help make better. So how about we each ask every one we know to either let a homeless person into their home to use a spare room, or to head down to local abandoned homes and start to restor them, provide money for the initial rents. We could ensure that no-one has to sleep rough tonight in both britain and america, if we just get every one we know to work together and get everyone they know to do the same.

See you tomorrow when nothings changed.

Bitter Thorn wrote:


I think that a 1% drop in tax means that billions of dollars could be used by folks who earned it rather than a corrupt and incompetent state. I think that is a virtue in itself.

So a junior admin clerk in a record company's HR department has earne their pay an is deserving of it, for ensuring that all the cogs in a now obsiliete and hugely wasteful corperate entity get payed has earned their reward, while some one performing the same job in the police servive has not and is part of the corrupt state.

Its virtuous to waste money on something you don't need, and wrong to have to play your part helping other people. Is that really what you beleive?

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Aberzombie wrote:
"Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
What really blows my mind however is how much Americans seem to loath their government and are certain its corrupt and incompetent.
Only because I work for it. :)

So we can blame you!

You are the root cause for the corruption and incompentence of the American Government!!


Bitter Thorn wrote:
Zombieneighbours wrote:

I've worked in the volentary sector, and while it is true that small local groups can be Nimble and flexable, they can be as prone to mismanagement and waste as any other organisiation. I helped to run a program for six months with what amounted to no service users, in an organisiation that got its funding form non-governmental sources.

In contrast, the most successful project i ever worked on was a higher education funding council for England summer school where we drastically increased university uptake amongst school leaver from families who had never had members attend university. HEFCE is funded by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

Sure government bureaucracy can fail us. But so can charities, businesses, family, friends and neighbours. All of these can be be wasteful, all of these can contain systemic failing. But you do not call for the disolution of these institutions? Ironically, governments have far more accountablity than any of these other institutions.

Our experiences are radically different.

No argument there.

Bitter Thorn wrote:


I don't call for the dissolution of voluntary adult interactions.

Yes you do, government.

Living in the united kingdom is a voluntary social interaction. I choose to be a UK citizin(subject techniqually but we are working on that one). If i do not accept the laws an customs of the UK, i can choose to leave the UK or attempt to change the UK, so long as my actions in doing so do not break the UK's laws.

You make the same choice, but for the USA.

Bitter Thorn wrote:


I would argue that governments have vastly less accountability. If the food bank I support is wasteful or stupid I support another one. If they are not transparent enough for my liking I support another one.

When my federal government is corrupt, wasteful, and inefficient they are a bit tougher to replace.

I can't fathom how you think government is more accountable than private charity.

Oh, perhapes to you indiviually, there is more accountablity. But society as a whole? I've been part of the funding chase on the inside and frankly, if my local school used money like one of the charities i have worked in, heads would roll in the next election, but the director of that charity is still there, and funding still comes from other charities and doners.

People give money. I don't know anyone who check up on how their £5/month to help for heroes is spent.


Aberzombie wrote:
"Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
What really blows my mind however is how much Americans seem to loath their government and are certain its corrupt and incompetent.
Only because I work for it. :)

Australians have a natural distrust of authority - We dont loath our politicians, but in general we think that they are a bunch of d%&~%eads.

They are human and are just as flawed as anybody else. Democracy is the best of a bad lot of ideas.

A polly is either that tosser that was class captain or some do-gooder that wants to do good to you.

You get the occasional good one - John Curtin, Ben Chifley, Gough Whitlam, Paul Keating, Bob Brown, Don Chipp, Janine Haines, Natasha Stott-Despoja.

When Mark Latham a former opostion leader referred to then Prime Minister John Howard (Man of Steel as GW Bush like to call him) as an "arse-licker" because of his relationship with the US nobody got upset.

The talk back radio and the Australian version of "Fox news" tried so hard to whip a storm, saying it was un-Australian to insult the Prime Minister during a war.

Most people said wouldn't have used those words but Latham is right - and a lot of people said its un-Australian not to insult the Prime Minister at any time - he is a politician.

Strangely the Liberal Party (Australian version of the Republicans (there is a whole false advertising thing going on)) started to occasionally say no to the US in public after that.

Taldor

Callous Jack wrote:
lastknightleft wrote:
Hah your foil had no meaning in the first place as in order to upset me you have to be talking about paladins in the beta boards, otherwise, I am impossible to actually anger. I guess my posts came off harsh instead of light hearted jabs though as they were removed.

Norweges are better and smarter than you, you redneck Floridian swamp Gnome.

[How was that?]

Just as long as you don't bring my roomate into the argument, nope, not even phased you filthy Norwege lover.


Zombieneighbours wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:


I fail to see how we are in a competition (beyond ideology). When I choose to let a terminally ill friend stay with we for a year or two that required a lot of sacrifices. I just fail to comprehend how that diminishes me in relation to you. I simply don't see how this is a zero sum comparison. I'm not trying to be obtuse. I just don't see it the way you do.

Jobs, resources, sexual partners, territory....We are competing for all these and more. You don't see it because you live in one of the richest countries in the world, in a time when resources are still relatively plentiful, if declining. Perhapes you'd notice it more if you lived else where and had been involved in food riots.

The point is, if it is true that is is okay to cheat the system for the gulf buggy, why isn't it okay to cheat the system for your own benifit here.

The last part really strikes me as cognitively dissonant.

You want the government to have much more power and direct control than I do. This is an example of government control and manipulation of the rules of the Byzantine tax code. People who capitalize on this are simply working within the frame work of the rules as written. They are responding to the incentive created by the government. Isn't that the point of creating the incentive in the first place? You want the state to set the rules, and you want the people to follow them. That's exactly what is happening here.

I think it's better for an individual to make a poor choice that only harms them self than for the state to use force to compel them to make a different choice.


Zombieneighbours wrote:


Bitter Thorn wrote:


I don't call for the dissolution of voluntary adult interactions.

Yes you do, government.

Living in the united kingdom is a voluntary social interaction. I choose to be a UK citizin(subject techniqually but we are working on that one). If i do not accept the laws an customs of the UK, i can choose to leave the UK or attempt to change the UK, so long as my actions in doing so do not break the UK's laws.

You make the same choice, but for the USA.

I don't follow how I "...call for the dissolution of voluntary adult interactions.".


The 8th Dwarf wrote:
Aberzombie wrote:
"Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
What really blows my mind however is how much Americans seem to loath their government and are certain its corrupt and incompetent.
Only because I work for it. :)

Australians have a natural distrust of authority - We dont loath our politicians, but in general we think that they are a bunch of d*#*%eads.

They are human and are just as flawed as anybody else. Democracy is the best of a bad lot of ideas.

A polly is either that tosser that was class captain or some do-gooder that wants to do good to you.

You get the occasional good one - John Curtin, Ben Chifley, Gough Whitlam, Paul Keating, Bob Brown, Don Chipp, Janine Haines, Natasha Stott-Despoja.

When Mark Latham a former opostion leader referred to then Prime Minister John Howard (Man of Steel as GW Bush like to call him) as an "arse-licker" because of his relationship with the US nobody got upset.

The talk back radio and the Australian version of "Fox news" tried so hard to whip a storm, saying it was un-Australian to insult the Prime Minister during a war.

Most people said wouldn't have used those words but Latham is right - and a lot of people said its un-Australian not to insult the Prime Minister at any time - he is a politician.

Strangely the Liberal Party (Australian version of the Republicans (there is a whole false advertising thing going on)) started to occasionally say no to the US in public after that.

Its not really the politicians that I'm thinking of in this dichotomy. I think dislike of politicians is pretty close to universal in the west. Where I think the real dichotomy occurs is with the machinery of government itself.

I mean there is more to the concept then this and I suspect that there are variations across nation states - some actually have examples in recent history of the government making some really deeply bad decisions - I mean it must have been really pretty terrible for the average German citizen during the final year of World War II and probably for something close to at least a decade afterword.

In fact we can even map some elements of that onto the German psyche but we still don't get the same kind distrust of the state apparatus that one finds with huge numbers of Americans.


Long and bitter experience certainly plays a big role in solidifying my intense distrust of government and other institutions. I'm sure my personality plays a big role too, obviously. I'm plainly quite cynical.

I think HD's observations are also good regarding US cynicism about government.

Some of it might also relate to the scale of the issue in the US. The more socialist democratic model may be less of a train wreck in smaller countries. Canada and Australia have around 30 to 50 million people right? Maybe the inefficiencies and corruption are simply less of an issue with smaller more nimble and more responsive nations. Maybe your systems are less broken than ours. I just don't know enough about the EU, Canada and Australia to speculate about their national characters and governments.

I really do think the ideological gulf in the US is becoming broader and deeper than I have seen in my life, and I think more and more people are losing trust in government and political parties with valid reason. Maybe I'm projecting; one makes wide generalizations about a nation this big and diverse at ones peril I suppose.


No one would listen.

While the industry is not without blame by any means, the failure of the SEC is simply stunning.


Bitter Thorn wrote:
I really do think the ideological gulf in the US is becoming broader and deeper than I have seen in my life.

You must be younger than I am -- or more forgetful or more nostalgic. I remember "long-haired Pinko Commie hippies" getting beat up, and arrived just a little too late to catch the fun at Kent State. I'm also too young to have had to live through McCarthy, thankfully, but I hardly think there was a smaller ideological gap then than now.


Kirth Gersen wrote:
Bitter Thorn wrote:
I really do think the ideological gulf in the US is becoming broader and deeper than I have seen in my life.
You must be younger than I am -- or more forgetful or more nostalgic. I remember "long-haired Pinko Commie hippies" getting beat up, and arrived just a little too late to catch the fun at Kent State. I'm also too young to have had to live through McCarthy, thankfully, but I hardly think there was a smaller ideological gap then than now.

I'm 42 so I missed the fun of the sixties and McCarthy, but I think we're going to see very interesting times.

51 to 100 of 2,076 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | next > last >>
Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo Community / Off-Topic Discussions / Government folly All Messageboards

©2002–2014 Paizo Inc.®. Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours: Monday–Friday, 10 AM–5 PM Pacific Time. View our privacy policy. Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc., and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Online, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.