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Reasons why Corporations aren't People


Off-Topic Discussions

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Abraham spalding wrote:
Auxmaulous wrote:

Here is my source - works for the Cato Institute

Link

That was my source, go ahead and list yours.

Your source cites only 18 school districts across the USA for building it's over all case and doesn't actually provide any data, which makes it a poor source -- that combined with the fact that it's on the opinion page means it's not even a real article. Finally I guess it should be mentioned that the article in question is almost 2 years old.

I had already googled myself to the Cato Institute site and found different articles by the same guy, but no stats for LA, which is, presumably, why Citizen Auxumaulous linked the article he linked.

If you take Schaeffer's word for it, well, yeah, $29 k is a lot to spend a year per kid for a shiznitty education.


Abraham spalding wrote:
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

Hey! What's wrong with taking me serious?!?

I mean, thanks for the back up and all, but...

True -- I don't know you remind me of Jayne from Firefly... I know your a dangerous nut about to just blow everything away but at the same time my days of not taking you seriously are coming to a middling at best.

I think it's the way you toy with it all.

Well, being compared to Jayne did kinda just make my day, so, I'll let it slide.

Shadow Lodge

Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

Hey! What's wrong with taking me serious?!?

I mean, thanks for the back up and all, but...

True -- I don't know you remind me of Jayne from Firefly... I know your a dangerous nut about to just blow everything away but at the same time my days of not taking you seriously are coming to a middling at best.

I think it's the way you toy with it all.

Well, being compared to Jayne did kinda just make my day, so, I'll let it slide.

You must now acquire the hat.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I'd rather have the guns and the whores.


Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:
Auxmaulous wrote:

Here is my source - works for the Cato Institute

Link

That was my source, go ahead and list yours.

Your source cites only 18 school districts across the USA for building it's over all case and doesn't actually provide any data, which makes it a poor source -- that combined with the fact that it's on the opinion page means it's not even a real article. Finally I guess it should be mentioned that the article in question is almost 2 years old.

I had already googled myself to the Cato Institute site and found different articles by the same guy, but no stats for LA, which is, presumably, why Citizen Auxumaulous linked the article he linked.

If you take Schaeffer's word for it, well, yeah, $29 k is a lot to spend a year per kid for a shiznitty education.

Meh I'm not going to let him off that easily -- I do research for my posts I link to the research in question so I have a valid source for my argument and material that can be easily found, followed, and disputed.

I'm tired of the tactic of, "well I provided my source -- you have to provide yours!" when the source in question is not a valid source for material in a dispute.

Also I shouldn't have to chase down the sources in question in order to have to dispute them -- especially when the argument is predicated on the data in the source.

It's like this article that claims one thing but then has a thousand different ways that the data is presented incorrectly and used incorrectly to force the numbers to say something they don't.


Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
Who the hell is going to invade us? I mean, seriously?

Nobody. We spend more on the military than all of our nearest rivals.

I fully agree we spend far too much on the military and use in unjustifiable ways.
But that's beside the point. I just don't see how it would be possible to let someone opt out of funding the military in exchange for not getting the (theoretical) benefits of that military. They can't be split up on an individual basis.

Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
Btw, Comrade Jeff, since you never come into the bestest thread on Paizo, what are you currently reading?

I should drop over there. Just finished Elizabeth Bear's Range of Ghosts and just started rereading the Screwtape Letters.


Auxmaulous wrote:
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

LAUSD?

I highly doubt the unions run California. But if they do, that's cool with me.

So you would be cool if the students were getting a piss-poor education, as long as the institutions are run by the Unions?

thejeff wrote:
I'm going to need a source for that figure before I give it any credence. The numbers I found on a quick search put in closer to the $8000 range, which is closer to what I'd expect.

I think the number you sourced was per student for Private schools (around $8,500).

Here is my source - works for the Cato Institute
Link

That was my source, go ahead and list yours.

A spreadsheet linked here gives a breakdown by district. The average for California is $8,323. Some districts, including LA are much higher. That doesn't surprise me. Your original claim was for So. Cal., which I assume is larger than 1 district.

Cheliax

I think that's is the budget per student, not total cost per student (teacher benefits, building overhead, etc).

Also you can see from your link one important factor that is omitted in the calculation

Quote:
Employee Benefits (does not include state payments to retirement systems on behalf of districts)"

Which is a gigantic part of the cost and part of this Public Union problem (which needs to be eradicated).

Even ignoring that some of the final cost per students is astronomical.

-

Abraham spalding wrote:
Meh I'm not going to let him off that easily -- I do research for my posts I link to the research in question so I have a valid source for my argument and material that can be easily found, followed, and disputed.

Post your counter data so I can take a look at it.

Here is another article about public education in the DC area (editorial, but it breaks the info down so you can check it out yourself).

link


I, for one, don't disbelieve that, if you include the cost of building new schools (how are they figuring out that amount--dumping it into the year they build it, stretching it out for projected length of time it will be used, etc., etc.?) and paying pensions and health benefits for all employees, it could cost that much.

EDIT: Actually, going back to the original article it doesn't really say anything about what LAUSD was spending its money on other than a $578 million new school that was going to relieve school overcrowding.

Now, I'm not defending the government or the education system (and, Citizen Auxumalous, you'll notice that your link blames disastrous payroll and management policies, so I'll need more info on how this is the teachers' union's fault), but one obvious difference between private and public schools is that while the latter have to construct new buildings when there are too many students, the former just say, no vacancies!


I was with you on that second link, Aux, until I saw the byline. Oh look, Cato institute...

Cheliax

Ok, screw the articles. Take the budget per district, then add in the cost per teacher (already included in thejeff's link) then add in the payout the state has to make (in this case CA Calpers, but omitted from the cost on the spreadsheet) to each teacher's benefit plan and then divide that out per student.

The cost is too damn high.

And CommieAnklebiter, unions have run this state for a pretty long time. Started mostly on the first run of Gov. Jerry Brown where he allowed public unions the ability to have collective bargaining powers - against who? The citizens.

I would say pretty much since the late 70's on the unions run the state and call the shots. Behind every tax increase or fee increase - unions, every major public works project - unions. Arnie was going to try to check them until the nurses checked him right back and turned him into their b!tch.

And don't completely knock the Cato institute - they are very libertarian and conservative on fiscal issues but they also stand up for equality in marriage, civil rights, ad a few other liberal issues.

I don't think we are going to see eye-to-eye on this issue. I should get my head examined for trying to post in these echo chamber threads in the first place.


Auxmaulous wrote:

Ok, screw the articles. Take the budget per district, then add in the cost per teacher (already included in thejeff's link) then add in the payout the state has to make (in this case CA Calpers, but omitted from the cost on the spreadsheet) to each teacher's benefit plan and then divide that out per student.

No. That's too hard. I'll take your article.

Quote:
The cost is too damn high.

You are probably right. If Los Angeles is anything like Boston was, it's urban institutions are probably rife with graft and theft. How many of your employees are double-dipping for pensions? How many are pocketing bribes from builders? Etc., etc.

Quote:

And CommieAnklebiter, unions have run this state for a pretty long time. Started mostly on the first run of Gov. Jerry Brown where he allowed public unions the ability to have collective bargaining powers - against who? The citizens.

I would say pretty much since the late 70's on the unions run the state and call the shots. Behind every tax increase or fee increase - unions, every major public works project - unions. Arnie was going to try to check them until the nurses checked him right back and turned him into their b!tch.

Again, if LA is anything like Boston: I don't buy it. I can't speak to the particulars of California history, but it sounds like you're saying that because state employees are allowed to have unions they run the government. That might make sense in your head, but it doesn't in mine.

Quote:
And don't completely knock the Cato institute - they are very libertarian and conservative on fiscal issues but they also stand up for equality in marriage, civil rights, ad a few other liberal issues.

I don't believe I've ever said anything bad about the Cato Institute, but, since you ask, I think they're a bunch of stooges of the plutocracy.

Quote:


I don't think we are going to see eye-to-eye on this issue. I should get my head examined for trying to post in these echo chamber threads in the first place.

We probably won't, but "echo chamber"? Are you reading the same thread that I am?


Auxmaulous wrote:
Irontruth wrote:
Auxmaulous wrote:
Irontruth wrote:


So you think that a family of 4 with an income of $22,000, should receive zero benefits and pay into the system?
Where did I say they should receive zero benefits?

You said they should have skin in the game. I take that to mean that they have to pay money into the system. If they are going to get money from the system, isn't it simpler to just let them keep their money? Or are you saying the government should decide how they spend a portion of their income?

Here's a couple things to help make it clear, fill this out:

Income: $22,000
Taxes paid: XXXX
Benefit received: XXXX

The actual numbers don't matter, but replace the X's with an approximation of what you think they should be. We're not going to quibble over $2000 vs $2500, but just put some numbers in to give the general idea of what you think.

Since you are setting the situation why don't you tell me what a family of 4 making $22,000 should pay and what kind of benefits they should receive?

If in So.Cal remember to include the cost to educate at $29,000 per kid/per year that are currently enrolled in public education (k-12). Otherwise 10k per kid would suffice.

thejeff" wrote:
Guess we'll just run bigger deficits then

Or you could always cut spending and try to run a more efficient system of Gov't and appropriately paid public sector jobs.

You're the one who wants skin in the game. I'm trying to understand what it is you want.

How much should a family of 4 making $22,000 pay the government?
How much should government give a family of 4 making $22,000?

I'm not trying to argue "$150 isn't enough in foodstamps, it should be $150.75". I want to know what you think "skin in the game" means. That's a very vague term and I don't think you've thought through what it is you're suggesting, but I won't know that until I know what it is you're suggesting.


If you like, Citizen Aux (nods to Citizen Meatrace), I will further differentiate myself from Citizens Spalding, Comrade Jeff, et. al.

I'll relink this article here

I originally used it to try to reopen the Occupy thread, where it already got favorited by Citizen HD, with whom I don't agree either!

This place is far from an echo chamber.


Irontruth wrote:


You're the one who wants skin in the game. I'm trying to understand what it is you want.

How much should a family of 4 making $22,000 pay the government?
How much should government give a family of 4 making $22,000?

I'm not trying to argue "$150 isn't enough in foodstamps, it should be $150.75". I want to know what you think "skin in the game" means. That's a very vague term and I don't think you've thought through what it is you're suggesting, but I won't know that until I know what it is you're suggesting.

Down with the Tax-Collectors! Vive le Galt!

No, seriously. All these things we pay our taxes on? If we just overthrew the government and all became communists, it'd be cheaper is all I'm sayin.'

Cheliax

Income: $22,000
Taxes paid: $1,100 (5%)
Benefit received: Since we are talking about education -
Assuming 3 kids in school - 30k a year in education
Assuming 2 kids in school - 20k a year in education

As far as other sub-systems and entitlements - you pay into Medicare and SS and get the assigned payout when need it/retirement. I don't think that SS payments should be taxed, that's just f$!*ing stupid.
If you are going to include socialized medicine then that percentage needs to go up (even though technically we already have socialized medicine).

I would also like you to consider that I also suggested as part of reform:

Flat tax for corps (no dodging)
Reduction/changes in overall takes: Purchases, gas, etc. Food that is not used for resale - not taxed. Alcohol should be. Gas taxes reduced or eliminated.

Helping the poor means cutting their expenses - food and gas taxes are a huge part of those expenses.

The lack of gov't oversight on the local, state and federal level has put us in this mess. Public unions should never have been given the power to set their own wages (via tax increases) and their investment strategies when they financially guaranteed by the taxpayer no matter how well they perform. Some incredibly horrible ideas.

Out here in LA, the LA Times (a very lib rag) was critical of the teachers unions pushing to eliminate standards and testing for their teachers. The unions lauded this as a success when they were dropped, the LA times questioned that line of reasoning. The Times, generally a very vocal advocate of Public Unions was in turn attacked by the union leaders. Dog eating dog.

-

"CommieAnklebiter wrote:
If you like, Citizen Aux (nods to Citizen Meatrace), I will further differentiate myself from Citizens Spalding, Comrade Jeff, et. al.

Pass, you are just further left-er..er then they are.

At least you're honest though.
Very reminiscent of the neo-fascist skins and ultra commie punkers I would have conversations with. They were clear about what they wanted and how and didn't try to blow smoke over that fact.


Auxmaulous wrote:

Income: $22,000

Taxes paid: $1,100 (5%)
Benefit received: Since we are talking about education -
Assuming 3 kids in school - 30k a year in education
Assuming 2 kids in school - 20k a year in education

As far as other sub-systems and entitlements - you pay into Medicare and SS and get the assigned payout when need it/retirement. I don't think that SS payments should be taxed, that's just f&*!ing stupid.
If you are going to include socialized medicine then that percentage needs to go up (even though technically we already have socialized medicine).

I would also like you to consider that I also suggested as part of reform:

Flat tax for corps (no dodging)
Reduction/changes in overall takes: Purchases, gas, etc. Food that is not used for resale - not taxed. Alcohol should be. Gas taxes reduced or eliminated.

Helping the poor means cutting their expenses - food and gas taxes are a huge part of those expenses.

Just to point out again, the education benefits you mention are largely not paid by federal income taxes, but by state taxes (often mostly sales) and local (often property taxes), so the hypothetical family is already paying that in other ways. They have skin in the game.

And a large chunk of the 47% percent supposedly not paying federal income taxes are seniors living mostly on SS, which you also don't want to tax.


thejeff wrote:

And a large chunk of the 47% percent supposedly not paying federal income taxes are seniors living mostly on SS, which you also don't want to tax.

Ooh, really?

[Adds factoid to arsenal]


Auxmaulous wrote:
Very reminiscent of the neo-fascist skins

I much preferred the comparison to Jayne, but anyway:

You are all to the right of me. Therefore a) you must all be unanimous in your opinions and b) when you don't instantly believe everything I say I shall call you a borg-minded echo chamber.


Auxmaulous wrote:


Abraham spalding wrote:
Meh I'm not going to let him off that easily -- I do research for my posts I link to the research in question so I have a valid source for my argument and material that can be easily found, followed, and disputed.

Post your counter data so I can take a look at it.

Except to date you provided no actual data -- I have to take some opinion writer's word that he has something when he shows no numbers. I don't have to counter prove something that so far isn't provided.

Quote:

Here is another article about public education in the DC area (editorial, but it breaks the info down so you can check it out yourself).

link

Editorial this time? And again without a citation of what reports he is using to make his claims. Considering this is man is a director of the Cato institute (read currently being bought by the Koch brothers) I'm more than a little skeptical.

For example he suggests comparing to Florida's numbers -- well we could but lets depending on who you ask Florida either sits at No. 5 or No. 35 in national ranking.
No. 5
No. 35

Now the No. 5 ranking at least states where he's getting his numbers -- the Education Week's Top 10. However he doesn't provide what Florida as a whole is spending on education per student. The center on budget priorities and Policy Priorities tells us that Florida is spending only 3,499 dollars per student on their schooling (you'll see they also include their methodology which is always nice -- you should always show your work). My second link references A Florida tax watch report on Florida's ranking in education and is partially and index of other reports. Hm... turns out it's ALEC that ranked Florida fifth in the nation -- ALEC has some really bad problems with screwing numbers and not following proper statistical procedures so now I have to question their fifth place ranking more.

Of course I'm not through everything yet, but I figured I would share what I have so far so you would have more of an idea of what I'm specifically looking for.

Cheliax

thejeff wrote:


Just to point out again, the education benefits you mention are largely not paid by federal income taxes, but by state taxes (often mostly sales) and local (often property taxes), so the hypothetical family is already paying that in other ways. They have skin in the game.

And a large chunk of the 47% percent supposedly not paying federal income taxes are seniors living mostly on SS, which you also don't want to tax.

Just to restate - I am talking about total Tax reform. That means changing the way taxes work in total. You can't have a flat federal tax and let the states do whatever they want tax-wise (and no, this isn't a fed vs. state issue, this is a people vs. the taxes they pay in total issue).

-

As an aside - I highly doubt that this $22k/year earner is a property owner, so even going by your reasoning they are not paying property tax and funding their local schools.


Auxmaulous wrote:

Income: $22,000

Taxes paid: $1,100 (5%)
Benefit received: Since we are talking about education -
Assuming 3 kids in school - 30k a year in education
Assuming 2 kids in school - 20k a year in education

Got it, now I know where you stand. You're understanding of how things work is extremely different from mine and we won't see eye-to-eye on anything.


Auxmaulous wrote:
As an aside - I highly doubt that this $22k/year earner is a property owner, so even going by your reasoning they are not paying property tax and funding their local schools.

More than any other tax, property taxes are passed on directly to renters. She would not be paying property tax directly, but it'll come right out of the rent check.

Cheliax

Here is an interesting link drawing comparisons between public sector and private sector employee benefits.

Looks on average that for the same job public sector employees make more money and pay around 10% less in contributions to their medical coverage from Connecticut. I would like to get the CA information, but the information was incomplete and what they did have posted did not include benefits (which democrats love to hide when making comparisons).

link
With the exception of IT services, the Public employee (aka leech class) make more money. And for crappola service.

Anyway, I'm done for the night. And now I know why most people avoid posting in the bottom parts of the boards.

----

Irontruth wrote:
Got it, now I know where you stand. You're understanding of how things work is extremely different from mine and we won't see eye-to-eye on anything.

And that's a good thing. Because a progressive tax and poor people not paying any kind of tax is the only way to go, GOT IT!

Let me know when you are ready to post your response to your scenario (which you still haven't done). I'm curious to see what magic number you have in your head for the benefits allocated to people who don't pay taxes.


Auxmaulous wrote:
Irontruth wrote:
Got it, now I know where you stand. You're understanding of how things work is extremely different from mine and we won't see eye-to-eye on anything.

And that's a good thing. Because a progressive tax and poor people not paying any kind of tax is the only way to go, GOT IT!

Let me know when you are ready to post your response to your scenario (which you still haven't done). I'm curious to see what magic number you have in your head for the benefits allocated to people who don't pay taxes.

We completely disagree. But it doesn't matter what I say, you're not going to agree with me. We're both convinced we're right, but we're also starting with different basic assumptions.

I don't disagree that the system needs to change, but your ideas are anathema to me.

You don't actually want to see my numbers. Once you saw them, you wouldn't care about anything more that I had to say.


Auxmaulous wrote:


With the exception of IT services, the Public employee (aka leech class) make more money.

I wonder why you think this is true.

I come from a different place when I think about "public sector employees" than most people, both my parents work for the government (or have worked) at various levels. My dad has a masters in botany and works for Fish and Wildlife, and my mom has a PhD in Limnology and has worked as a hydrogeologist and land use regulator at state and federal levels. These are science professionals. After 21 years or so at his job, my dad is making about 70,000/yr. That may seem like a lot of money to you, but it's someone with a high level degree and 30+ years of professional experience in his field.

I understand if you're annoyed that, say, a street sweeper gets paid 15 bucks an hour, like they do in my city (no bennies though) or someone working in the cafeteria at a federal building makes $35k/yr with a pension. Those jobs can easily be farmed out so some minimum wage lackey. While I value these people's labor higher than yours, I get your side, and there's at least a debate to be had there. Personally I think (uniformed) police are absurdly overpaid for what amounts to a thug job. But saying all public employees are a "leech class" is either incredibly ignorant or highly disingenuous.

Like it or not, schoolteachers are also people with professional degrees and deserve appropriate compensation. I know a lot of high school teachers and count some among my close friends and relatives. I know no one making more than $50k/yr. An argument can be made that, really, it's the administration that is soaking up all this cash, paying themselves in 6 figures yadda yadda. I can buy that.

But then explain what's happening in Wisconsin, where I'm from. A bill gets passed making it illegal for public sector collective bargaining units to bargain for ANYTHING except base wages. They can't bargain about work atmosphere, or safety, or vacation time, or anything like that. Firemen and Police were excluded, transparently because they traditionally vote Republican. Now that they can't go to their union rep for help, the Republican governor is basically cutting teachers salaries by up to 30%, eliminating all merit increases for additional education or training (like going back for a Masters, etc.). On top of having to pay more for their healthcare, it means that a beginning high or middle school teacher, which requires a minimum of 6 years of post secondary education likely totaling 150k or more in student loan debt, will start at 28,800 a year or some such. Or, as much as a street sweeper.


Auxmaulous wrote:
Anyway, I'm done for the night. And now I know why most people avoid posting in the bottom parts of the boards.

Because whenever people disagree, they start whining about echo chambers?


Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
Auxmaulous wrote:
Anyway, I'm done for the night. And now I know why most people avoid posting in the bottom parts of the boards.
Because whenever people disagree, they start whining about echo chambers?

It seems as though you're taking Aux's insults more gravely than you usually take anything around here, Comrade.


Trolling is fine and fun, but I can't stand it when people lump me in with not-very-left-wing Democrats. Makes my blood boil!

I also think the whole "oh, you guys disagree with me because you're a left-wing echo chamber, why do I even bother?" line of argument to be very distasteful, especially when we're all disagreeing with each other.

And, finally, it also pisses me off because people who listen to Discharge and MDC should realize that they're not called "punkers."


Can we turn this into a thread about our favorite d-beat bands?


Yep, time to hide this thread.

Cheliax

Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

Trolling is fine and fun, but I can't stand it when people lump me in with not-very-left-wing Democrats. Makes my blood boil!

I also think the whole "oh, you guys disagree with me because you're a left-wing echo chamber, why do I even bother?" line of argument to be very distasteful, especially when we're all disagreeing with each other.

And, finally, it also pisses me off because people who listen to Discharge and MDC should realize that they're not called "punkers."

This is a left wing echo chamber, most all these posted threads here are. Most posters here are left or left-leaning, most of Paizo staff - left leaning. That's just the nature of modern gaming. You like to consider yourself above others just because you are further to the left but in fact you mostly want the same s!+~, just with more people dead or relieved of more money. Same s+!~, just further to the left.

You are not disagreeing with each other - if you are I don't see it. What I see here each and every day is when someone espouses a conservative or libertarian point of view that doesn't jell with the crowd they get wolf-packed or shouted down. This is a majority left, hyper-partisan and highly intolerant place to post - hence my "I should get my head examined" comment. In other words, I should know better - that's my fault, not the fault of anyone else.

It would be nice to have a conversation or debate about an issue but human nature being what it is means that isn't going to happen.

And on the "punker" comment. I use punk rock as a generic and common term, I'm not going to call one band crusty vs. another anarcho and yet another hardcore. Please spare my the uninformed criticism and attempt to nullify my influences with what amounts as character assassination.

@meatrace - I don't mind the pay as much as the very sweet benefits that the taxpayer is on the hook for. If there was less collusion between gov't and public labor, if they paid into benefits similar to the private sector I would actually be OK with them making more money by having a higher base pay. What I don't like is when unions push for something like Obamacare for everyone else yet they are the first ones to opt out of the system. If they paid them similar to the private sector with similar benefits (and pay-ins) and minimize their pay influence (the union side of things of raising revenue needs by raising taxes ) then I think we would all be better off as a whole. Future retirees would be covered and we would be closer to funding all aspects of our obligation to pay public employees.

In any case, sorry to everyone for the hard feelings. It was my mistake knowing the nature of this place and going against the grain trying to post on the subject.

Time to hide this thread.


So, apparently it's the tolerant people who're hiding the thread?


@Aux-I'm sure it won't matter since you're hiding this thread but nonetheless. Can you consider for a moment that the reason people shout down conservative or libertarian points of view is because they are often very harsh, reactionary, and not thought out? Someone comes on here and says "blah blah blah 20% flat tax" and I feel the same as the first time I heard it. Interested. I am still waiting for someone who proposes a flat tax to explain away the logical next step, which is poor getting poorer by paying more and rich STILL dodging taxes.

I'd have the same objection of Anklebiter's constant refrain of "socialist workers' revolution!" but I'm both unsure of how genuine it is, and it pops up in literally every thread he shows up in (at least in OT). Way too much work!

As for the actual union worker issue, I think the problem is not that public sector union workers are doing too well, it's that the same protections afforded them have been continually eroded for the private sector for the last 30 years. The objection just sort of whiffs of jealousy, the same jealousy I get accused of when I propose, I dunno, a marginal tax rate increase of the top 5% of earners.

Before Reagan, public sector jobs weren't really desired because they paid less than their private sector counterparts, but they offered 2 things 1)benefits like health insurance and vacation and 2)stability in guaranteed cost of living increases. In the years since 1980, the private sector has seen real wages actually go DOWN because of constant cost-cutting and corporate greed, whereas those public sector jobs are paying effectively the same in real dollars.

The US has suffered the effects of supply-side economics. The hard truth now is that, in an economy which is 60% driven by consumer spending, we are better off when the bottom quintile has some spreading around money. It's the engine that kept our economy going for 50 years and it was systematically dismantled in the name of corporate greed. Unions may not be the ideal solution, but they are the only solution that have any sort of bargaining power.

I wish I had a union job.


Auxmaulous wrote:
You like to consider yourself above others just because you are further to the left but in fact you mostly want the same s*#+, just with more people dead or relieved of more money. Same s*&@, just further to the left.

Point of information: Just because I am right about everything doesn't mean I consider myself better than anybody. Except maybe Citizen Meatrace.

Long live The Dead!
Vive le Galt!


Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
Auxmaulous wrote:
You like to consider yourself above others just because you are further to the left but in fact you mostly want the same s*#+, just with more people dead or relieved of more money. Same s*&@, just further to the left.
Point of information: Just because I am right about everything doesn't mean I consider myself better than anybody. Except maybe Citizen Meatrace.

Demilich>Gobbo

Case closed!


You know, my eyesight isn't what it once was: I thought you were some kind of arctic ape!

Anyway, you're right Citizen Meatrace. You do wish you had a union job. They're awesome. Go see if the UPS near you is hiring.


Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

You know, my eyesight isn't what it once was: I thought you were some kind of arctic ape!

Anyway, you're right Citizen Meatrace. You do wish you had a union job. They're awesome. Go see if the UPS near you is hiring.

Pretty sure they aren't. But I'm not a manual labor guy anyway and am already committed to the next few years to get my BA.


What are you saying? You're a student? 'Coz UPS Part-Time is the quintessential college student job...with full benefits.


According to upsjobs.com, they're hiring in Madison. And they do tuition reimbursement--all you have to get is a D- and the company will give you $1500/semester!

Union jobs are awesome; you should have one before you die.


A little something to while away the time.


Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

According to upsjobs.com, they're hiring in Madison. And they do tuition reimbursement--all you have to get is a D- and the company will give you $1500/semester!

Union jobs are awesome; you should have one before you die.

Wait, would I have to, like, lift stuff? No thanks!

Here is something for you to enjoy. Also this and for a change of pace.


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meatrace wrote:
Personally I think (uniformed) police are absurdly overpaid for what amounts to a thug job.

You said lots of interesting things, however I have to disagree with this. Being a police officer has become a fairly intellectually demanding career. We routinely ask them to make snap judgment calls on complicated legal issues. Even beat cops. Most larger police forces now require 4 year degrees. The reality is that a level of training is required to make decisions to ensure that the suspects constitutional rights are protected. (And that the arrest, search, etc is valid). From personal professional experience the difference between well paid and educated officers and those departments unwilling or unable to hire those kinds of officers is large.


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Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

No, seriously. All these things we pay our taxes on? If we just overthrew the government and all became communists, it'd be cheaper is all I'm sayin.'

Without government how do we redistribute goods amongst a large populace? (Paraphrasing, it's been awhile since I read Marx). From each from his skill to eac to their need. Right? The problem is if I really like building chairs. And I'm really good at it I build chairs and then people who need chairs get them. (and I get food, medicine, etc.)

Who distributes the chairs. Will they pick the best ones for themselves? I like it comrade I just worry it wouldn't work.


@MeanDM

For those that don't care:
MeanDM wrote:
meatrace wrote:
Personally I think (uniformed) police are absurdly overpaid for what amounts to a thug job.
You said lots of interesting things, however I have to disagree with this. Being a police officer has become a fairly intellectually demanding career. We routinely ask them to make snap judgment calls on complicated legal issues. Even beat cops. Most larger police forces now require 4 year degrees. The reality is that a level of training is required to make decisions to ensure that the suspects constitutional rights are protected. (And that the arrest, search, etc is valid). From personal professional experience the difference between well paid and educated officers and those departments unwilling or unable to hire those kinds of officers is large.

I've had only a few experiences with police in my life, thankfully, and they've all been pretty darn negative.

When I was 16 I was leaving a mall with friends and had guns pulled on us, our car searched, my bags searched without permission, because someone claimed we had defaced his friend's car (which he could see from about 500 feet away in an office building) which we did NOT do. After being handcuffed and detained for about half an hour by 8 cops (!!!) we were told we had to wash the vandalism off of the car or be detained indefinitely.

When I was 17 I had my CDs stolen while at a party, probably about 100 CDs in all. Everyone at the party knew who did it. I reported it to the police, they gathered no less than a dozen eyewitness reports, and yet were unwilling to do anything about it since the suspect insisted upon her innocence.

About 3 years ago I was pulled over for speeding, even though I was going UNDER the speed limit, but was passing a car going about 20 mph under the limit. When I asked to see the radar gun (which in this state they are required to show you) the officer refused, saying if she let me see it she'd have to ticket me but she wanted to let me off with a warning.

And that's just me. About 8 years ago the local Halloween celebration got rowdy. I was there, it was crowded, but nothing violent was going on. Riot police were called in and, without any warning, the crowd was dispersed with tear gas. My friend, who was only there to pick up another drunk friend, got a fractured skull. No one ever so much as apologized.

The police in my city get a starting salary of 46k/year, with merit increases based on education although you only need a HS diploma for the job. After 4 years, if you get a 4 year degree (which the city will pay for) you're making about 60k/yr, full health, 6 weeks of vacation, and only 36 hour weeks. The city I live in has almost zero violent crime (other than, arguably, the few kids killed by police tazings) and yet hirings are up. Basically, they have very little to do other than police drunk driving and break up frat parties (college town) and get paid more than I ever will be.

I know that isn't the same everywhere, but you also have to wonder why there is so much police corruption, good-old-boy network protecting each others' backs, etc etc. There's a new story every day. If you're literally going to be in charge of enforcing the law, and are allowed nay REQUIRED to carry a firearm, you really ought to be held to a higher standard than the rest of society. In my experience police are the bullies from HS that couldn't get any other job.


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meatrace wrote:
Lots of bad experiences.

I'm sorry those things happened to you. I know they do. It sounds like it's a real problem where you live. Couple of thoughts. It would probably be better if the degree were required before the job. I'll just say that from practicing law for a while and representing 1000s of real criminals that my (and collectively their) experience has been that poorly trained and educated officers are MORE likely to behave in the ways you describe. The other problem is the process of institutionalization. If there is a core cadre of officers who have been there forever who act like that, they are the ones training the new ones to act that way. Along with social pressure. There are reports that a lot of the problems in LA in the 90s with cops sprang from this kind of social and institutional pressure. Lastly it's unsurprising that hiring more cops happens. Law enforcement taxes are usually the only popular taxes (yay I'm on topic!) It's easy to point at a politician that votes one down with a declamation that they don't care about your families safety.


Also there are a lot of police departments that aren't actual police departments anymore too. Private police departments are full on private companies that tend to hire the lower end of the pool and tend to not provide enough training -- this is because the higher end costs more (and typically searches for better jobs) and training is expensive. These companies have done a lot to damage the good name of police everywhere.


Which I find bizarre, since you'd think people would be just as rah rah about funding education. Except there's these people demonizing teachers as glorified babysitters.

I also think it's just one of those "power corrupts" things. They play with peoples' lives every day. You're not even allowed to disrespect a cop without getting either cuffs on your wrists or a boot to the noggin'. I don't mind them enforcing the law, really I don't, but when I'm abiding the law and I get harassed? Everyone has stories of cops harassing them for no good reason.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber

Many people do, but not all of them are true. Sometimes you have to consider the source. Often people that have problems with cops have those problems for a reason. But to be clear meatrace I'm NOT talking about you. :) Because it also happens just as you described.


And every cop has stories about everyone harassing them everyday -- taking (in some cases literal) pot shots at them and generally disrespecting them.

I wouldn't tell you there aren't bad cops out there -- we both know there are -- but do try and keep in mind what they have to deal with everyday. It's not exactly a bunch of nuns simply singing too loudly.

From the guy beating his wife, to the man that just shot another man in cold blood and is now claiming it was self-defense, to the drunk driver calling the cop every name in the book and trying to threaten him with his connections.

I've been fortunate -- most my experiences with cops have been rather good: However I make it a point to do what I can to not raise the stress in the situation or to harass the police (Meatrace I am *not* suggesting you would do such a thing -- I believe you very easily could have simply gotten cops with something up their butts).

While it doesn't excuse bad behavior it does help it make sense -- it's like the soldiers coming back from Iraq and Afghanistan who have trouble with crowds and loud noises.

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