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Index » Radio Paradise/General » General Discussion » Capitalism and Consumerism... now what? Page: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7  Next
Post to this Topic
Red_Dragon

Red_Dragon Avatar



Posted: Jul 12, 2020 - 8:09am

The Invention of Capitalism: How a Self-Sufficient Peasantry was Whipped Into Industrial Wage Slaves
haresfur

haresfur Avatar

Location: The Golden Triangle
Gender: Male


Posted: Jun 30, 2020 - 6:56pm



 Isabeau wrote:

"Goldman Sachs chief economist, Jan Hatzius, said his team investigated the link between face masks and COVID-19 health and economic outcomes and found a national mask mandate could save the country from a huge economic hit — a point that may grab Trump's attention.
"These calculations imply that a face mask mandate could potentially substitute for lockdowns that would otherwise subtract nearly 5% from GDP," the economist wrote in a note to clients."
-ABC News, June 30, 2020


 
We don't have a mask mandate or recommendations. Getting hot spot resurgence and rapid increases in number of cases in the Melbourne suburbs. Today's local paper had articles calling for easing restrictions on tourism and the hospitality industries. You aren't going to get a tourism industry recovery if you become the next hotspot. 
Isabeau

Isabeau Avatar

Location: sou' tex
Gender: Female


Posted: Jun 30, 2020 - 5:14pm


"Goldman Sachs chief economist, Jan Hatzius, said his team investigated the link between face masks and COVID-19 health and economic outcomes and found a national mask mandate could save the country from a huge economic hit — a point that may grab Trump's attention.
"These calculations imply that a face mask mandate could potentially substitute for lockdowns that would otherwise subtract nearly 5% from GDP," the economist wrote in a note to clients."
-ABC News, June 30, 2020


islander

islander Avatar

Location: Seattle
Gender: Male


Posted: May 28, 2020 - 11:29am



 black321 wrote:


 miamizsun wrote:

capitalism is one of those words that people have multiple (or at least a couple of) definitions

sort of like the free market

and there are others

i'm looking for a word

sophistry?

the abuse and misuse seems especially bad in higher ed and acolytes

whatever

if there's violence being threatened or initiated against peaceful peeps, i'm not interested

because human/property rights

hey look! there's the ring of power! we must get control at all costs!
 

I don't think capitalism is actually obtainable. instead, i'm leaning towards a cooperative version of capitalism. many's coops already exist, and thrive...but are threatened by larger cos, with unorganized, and compromised labor.
edit, and the consumer, more interested in cheap, than actual value
 

This, a thousand times. I know Amazon is convenient, but at what cost?  I spent 4 hours with a guy last week designing a system and when I followed up, he said he purchased it online, but still wanted me to install it. I told him we would be happy to do that, but we couldn't provide warranty coverage on the gear. He got pissed and  is shopping for another installer.  We are fortunate to have many customers who aren't like this, but the ones that are  make it really hard. 
black321

black321 Avatar

Location: An earth without maps
Gender: Male


Posted: May 28, 2020 - 8:43am



 miamizsun wrote:

capitalism is one of those words that people have multiple (or at least a couple of) definitions

sort of like the free market

and there are others

i'm looking for a word

sophistry?

the abuse and misuse seems especially bad in higher ed and acolytes

whatever

if there's violence being threatened or initiated against peaceful peeps, i'm not interested

because human/property rights

hey look! there's the ring of power! we must get control at all costs!
 

I don't think capitalism is actually obtainable. instead, i'm leaning towards a cooperative version of capitalism. many's coops already exist, and thrive...but are threatened by larger cos, with unorganized, and compromised labor.
edit, and the consumer, more interested in cheap, than actual value
miamizsun

miamizsun Avatar

Location: (3261.3 Miles SE of RP)
Gender: Male


Posted: May 28, 2020 - 8:34am

 black321 wrote:
Let's get back to normal! God, I hope not. Perhaps we can use this pandemic to create a better system. Hell, I'd even take capitalism.
 
capitalism is one of those words that people have multiple (or at least a couple of) definitions

sort of like the free market

and there are others

i'm looking for a word

sophistry?

the abuse and misuse seems especially bad in higher ed and acolytes

whatever

if there's violence being threatened or initiated against peaceful peeps, i'm not interested

because human/property rights

hey look! there's the ring of power! we must get control at all costs!
black321

black321 Avatar

Location: An earth without maps
Gender: Male


Posted: May 28, 2020 - 8:18am

Let's get back to normal! God, I hope not. Perhaps we can use this pandemic to create a better system. Hell, I'd even take capitalism.
Red_Dragon

Red_Dragon Avatar



Posted: May 28, 2020 - 7:58am



 miamizsun wrote:


i knew it

- ov

==================================================
you going anarchist? mutualist? anti-statist lefty?

been reading kevin, charles johnson and gary chartier?

c4ss.org

or maybe you're just getting in touch with your inner grizzly adams

it happens to all of us sooner or later

just remember, definitions are important, because confusion



 

I'm for a system that works; ours plainly doesn't.
ScottFromWyoming

ScottFromWyoming Avatar

Location: Powell
Gender: Male


Posted: May 28, 2020 - 7:56am



 miamizsun wrote:


i knew it

- ov

==================================================
you going anarchist? mutualist? anti-statist lefty?

been reading kevin, charles johnson and gary chartier?

c4ss.org

or maybe you're just getting in touch with your inner grizzly adams

it happens to all of us sooner or later

just remember, definitions are important, because confusion



 

"The market is not the economy."
—Marketplace Morning Report
miamizsun

miamizsun Avatar

Location: (3261.3 Miles SE of RP)
Gender: Male


Posted: May 28, 2020 - 5:36am

 Red_Dragon wrote: 

i knew it

- ov

==================================================
you going anarchist? mutualist? anti-statist lefty?

been reading kevin, charles johnson and gary chartier?

c4ss.org

or maybe you're just getting in touch with your inner grizzly adams

it happens to all of us sooner or later

just remember, definitions are important, because confusion



Red_Dragon

Red_Dragon Avatar



Posted: May 28, 2020 - 5:10am

Let 'em eat cake...
Red_Dragon

Red_Dragon Avatar



Posted: May 25, 2020 - 7:08am

The Iron Fist Behind the Invisible Hand: Capitalism As a State-Guaranteed System of Privilege
Red_Dragon

Red_Dragon Avatar



Posted: Jan 18, 2020 - 7:11am

A primary symptom of end-stage capitalism...
miamizsun

miamizsun Avatar

Location: (3261.3 Miles SE of RP)
Gender: Male


Posted: Feb 9, 2018 - 10:32am


the free market at work...
Red_Dragon

Red_Dragon Avatar



Posted: Jan 16, 2018 - 10:14am

The Invention of Capitalism: How a Self-Sufficient Peasantry was Whipped Into Industrial Wage Slaves
Lazy8

Lazy8 Avatar

Location: The Gallatin Valley of Montana
Gender: Male


Posted: Sep 1, 2016 - 1:00pm

My apologies for taking so long to reply. Been busy writing Karl Rove's speeches for him and drinking beer with my mom.

kcar wrote:
"But healthy people by and large already had insurance."

Not true.  

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_insurance_coverage_in_the_United_States

According to the United States Census Bureau, in 2012 there were 48.0 million people in the US (15.4% of the population) who were without health insurance.

The causes of this rate of uninsurance remain a matter of political debate. Rising insurance costs have contributed to a trend in which fewer employers are offering health insurance, and many employers are managing costs by requiring higher employee contributions. Many of the uninsured are the working poor or are unemployed. Others are healthy and choose to go without it. Some have been rejected by insurance companies and are considered "uninsurable". Some are without health insurance only temporarily. Some choose faith-based alternatives to health insurance.

...

It has been estimated that nearly one-fifth of the uninsured population is able to afford insurance, almost one quarter is eligible for public coverage, and the remaining 56% need financial assistance (8.9% of all Americans). An estimated 5 million of those without health insurance are considered "uninsurable" because ofpre-existing conditions. A recent study concluded that 15% of people shopping online for health insurance are considered "uninsurable" because of a pre-existing condition, or for being overweight. This label does not necessarily mean they can never get health insurance, but that they will not qualify for standard individual coverage. People with similar health status can be covered via employer-provided health insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid.


So, yeah: 85% of people already had insurance, and those who didn't were disproportionately unhealthy. You haven't contradicted me here.

"If the ACA had been pitched honestly we'd have been told your rates will go up, the value will go down, and the extra you'll be spending will subsidize sick people who wouldn't otherwise have insurance there would be less to complain about today. You could make a case for that. But it wasn't pitched that way. It was sold dishonestly—even the name (Affordable Care Act) is a lie."

Wow, do you work for Karl Rove or some other purveyor of disinformation? No one had a firm idea prior to the start of the ACA about what was going to happen. The insurance companies like United HealthCare that lost big money over the past two years sure didn't. Many of them offered premiums that were too low—not out of some need to mislead people but because they miscalculated costs. The government didn't lie in its predictions about the number of healthy people who signed up for insurance; the latest figure is that about half the expected number signed up, which decreases the risk pool. It's a big problem, but it's not one that the federal government quietly knew would happen. 

Spare us your whining about elites manipulating pawns. The ACA was an initial step to the reform of massively complex and enormous health care system. It has correctable problems. So did Medicare and Medicaid during their first years. Or were those also nefarious schemes foisted upon us by our overlords?

Before I start on the actual substance of this I'd like to make a point about process.

Let's say for the moment that I actually did work for Karl Rove. That wouldn't change the argument. If you want to attack me personally I guess, um...go for it. I'm a big boy. If you want to attack the argument...try harder. Seriously. You're making this too easy.

Let's start with the mystery of what would actually happen after the passage of the ACA. Really? No one knew what was going to happen? How exactly is that an argument for a massive change in policy? Let's create an enormous new regulatory and entitlement regime—10K pages of regulations, 159 new agencies, 9K new employees at the IRS alone, not to mention all the state exchanges and insurance rule changes—and...see what happens?

I wasn't accusing the Obamacare supporters of lying about some arcane statistic, I was accusing them of lying about the overall effect of the act. That is, that it would lower insurance premiums for most people and not just slow the growth in insurance premium, but lower them. The number Obama himself cited over and over was "up to $2500 per family". If you're wondering, no that didn't happen.

Now maybe all those who said those things actually believed them. There were certainly enough pitchmen out there repeating those claims as if they did. Lots of people who actually know how insurance works told them (and us) differently, but that was in the way of passing a massive pile of legislation in Congress, and the way our press and pundit class keeps track of things passing a bill is all that matters. The effects of that bill are unimportant—one side won, the other lost, the scoreboard changes. And somehow piling on taxes and mandates for higher coverage and bringing more sick people into risk pools was supposed to lower costs. It was a ridiculous notion then as now, but it sold and that's all that counts.

Yes, we were lied to. We were (that is, congress was) sold an absurd set of lies, easily seen thru, but they were things people wanted to believe.

"Go ahead and argue that it was the right thing to do, and that the ends justified the means. But to do so means that the public isn't to be trusted with decisions like this. "

WTF is this supposed to mean? The ACA was in full public view in Congressional committee discussions and floor debates. There was a massive amount of analysis and discussion of the bill and the law after its passage. The general public, the health insurance companies, health care providers and state officials all had access to information and commented on that information. The ACA had no deep, dark secrets or lies foisted upon the public. Find some other conspiracy theory to push.

All 906 pages were available at some point to read, sure. Have you read it? Have you read 10% of it? I tried, but I have a life, as do most people. My midmost actually sat down and read the entire incomprehensible thing. When he was done he questioned the utility of it—even the Supreme Court didn't get thru the whole wretched mess when they were arguing over its constitutionality.

So as a practical matter the availability of the text of the bill is irrelevant to this question. Yes, it was debated. One party opposed it, one party praised it. Both sides were exaggerating or lying about (or at least ignorantly mis-predicting) the effects of it—but one side promised lower insurance costs and that interpretation resonated with what people wanted to be true. It wasn't, but people still have unrealistic expectations of what legislation can really accomplish, and here were congressional leaders—their champions!—and the president of the United States promising them a reduced-price (if not free) lunch and extra servings and for a while they fell for it.

If you reduced the stated aims of the ACA to get more people who don't currently have it health insurance, even at a higher cost to those who do you could claim mission accomplished. And it wouldn't have taken 906 pages of law to do that, or 159 new agencies. It also wouldn't have passed. So in a way I'm trying to give supporters of Obamacare the benefit of a doubt—that they had a noble goal and achieved it, but did so by misleading people about the side effects.

Or you could claim that you really meant all that about lowering insurance costs, in which case it was a dismal and easily-predicted failure.

BTW that 2.3% medical device tax was hardly a big deal. 

https://www.brookings.edu/opinions/5-questions-about-the-medical-device-tax-and-its-potential-for-repeal/

A report from the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service, released last week, concluded that the tax is unlikely to hurt the profits of device companies, estimating that it will reduce industry output and employment by no more than .2 percent. CRS states, “The effect on the price of health care, however, will most likely be negligible because of the small size of the tax and small share of health care spending attributable to medical devices.” A separate report from Ernst & Young last month finds that domestic revenues for medical technology firms grew 4 percent to $336 billion in 2013, the first year the tax went into effect – about the same rate from 2012, indicating that the industry seems financially stable for now.


It's also been suspended for two years as of Dec. 2015: 

http://www.fiercebiotech.com/medical-devices/updated-medical-device-tax-suspended-1-8t-federal-budget

It was a big deal not because the numbers are so enormous, but because it was such a stunningly economically illiterate thing to do at all.

Let's lower the cost of health care by...raising the cost of the products used to provide it. Seriously, could even a Keynesian make a case for this? And suspending the implementation of an a stupid policy does not justify the policy, nor make those who wrote it look less stupid.
kcar

kcar Avatar



Posted: Aug 30, 2016 - 1:09pm

 kurtster wrote:

You're kidding, right ?   We have to pass it to find out what's in it ?

You can keep your doctor.  You can keep your plan.

 

From Factcheck.org:  

It’s true that insurance companies discontinued health plans that had covered millions of people who had bought them directly rather than through an employer. That’s because those plans didn’t meet the coverage standards of the new law.

But those policyholders didn’t lose the ability to have insurance. In most cases, insurers offered them an alternative plan, though there were some instances of companies exiting the individual market altogether.

Whether offered an alternative or not, individuals could shop for insurance on the federal and state marketplaces, or through a broker or insurance carrier directly. Many were likely eligible for federal subsidies to help pay for insurance, resulting in better coverage and lower rates for some. But the specific plan they had was indeed discontinued. (More than half of those with canceled policies were likely to be eligible for federal assistance, according to Urban Institute research, and about 80 percent of all those buying plans on the exchanges are expected to qualify for subsidies, according to the Congressional Budget Office.)

The FactCheck.org piece reports on two estimates that calculate about 2.6 million people had to change policies because their existing policy didn't meet ACA coverage standards. 
From the same FactCheck article.  "AFP" stands for "Americans for Prosperity", a conservative 501(c)(4) non-profit political advocacy group. :

The AFP ad also makes the claim that “millions of people can’t see their own doctors,” but there’s no evidence that all those who had individual market policies discontinued ended up not being able to keep their own doctors. Anecdotally, we know of some folks who were able to keep the same doctor on a new insurance policy. But those are only a few individual stories. One of our guiding principles here is the saying, “The plural of anecdote is not data.” 


black321

black321 Avatar

Location: An earth without maps
Gender: Male


Posted: Aug 30, 2016 - 8:51am

 Lazy8 wrote:
 
So reimbursement rates have been driven down—but premiums are still up. How can that be? I have an explanation: the reimbursement rates for prescriptions are only a small fraction of the cost of healthcare, which is largely driven by other factors.

When you expand a risk pool by adding healthy people you spread he costs of covering sick people over more healthy people. But healthy people by and large already had insurance. There were exceptions: folks who didn't see the value proposition in insurance, since they weren't likely to need it and would just end up carrying the load for others. A lot of them still don't have insurance—it's cheaper to pay the penalty for not having insurance than it is to buy insurance. Or they wait until they get sick to get it, which is a strategy that works when they can't be turned down for a pre-existing condition.

If the ACA had been pitched honestly we'd have been told your rates will go up, the value will go down, and the extra you'll be spending will subsidize sick people who wouldn't otherwise have insurance there would be less to complain about today. You could make a case for that. But it wasn't pitched that way. It was sold dishonestly—even the name (Affordable Care Act) is a lie.

Go ahead and argue that it was the right thing to do, and that the ends justified the means. But to do so means that the public isn't to be trusted with decisions like this. They're just pawns to be manipulated by elites who know what's best for us and we should just shut up and pay the bill.
 
Rates are going down for care providers as well.  Again, go read a 10K of a hospital group like HCA or Tenet Health if you are so inclined.

Health care is essentially a commodity that everyone needs and the best if not only way to lower costs is to include everyone in the insured pool to reduce volatility, which will lower costs.  The expected losses or the amount of people getting sick and getting care will not change (unless of course you dont provide care for uninsured when they get sick, or conversely factor in the fact that with more insured, people will take preventive measures and use the emergency rooms less). 

p.s, for what it's worth,  I'm not arguing for or against ACA specifically, but I am for some form of universal care where everyone has health care coverage. 
kurtster

kurtster Avatar

Location: drifting
Gender: Male


Posted: Aug 30, 2016 - 5:28am

 kcar wrote:

"Go ahead and argue that it was the right thing to do, and that the ends justified the means. But to do so means that the public isn't to be trusted with decisions like this. " 

WTF is this supposed to mean? The ACA was in full public view in Congressional committee discussions and floor debates. There was a massive amount of analysis and discussion of the bill and the law after its passage. The general public, the health insurance companies, health care providers and state officials all had access to information and commented on that information. The ACA had no deep, dark secrets or lies foisted upon the public. Find some other conspiracy theory to push.
 

 
You're kidding, right ?   We have to pass it to find out what's in it ?

You can keep your doctor.  You can keep your plan.




kcar

kcar Avatar



Posted: Aug 30, 2016 - 1:41am

 Lazy8 wrote:
 black321 wrote:
And we have ample examples of how unregulated markets led to deaths, financial collapse...

Pick any drug company 10q or 10k (manufacturing to retail) and you will see comments on how reduced reimbursement rates are hurting profit margins.

As for ACA, it could have been packaged a lot better, but i rather have a system we're everyone is insured than not.  Insurance 101 - Diversify your risk pool...get everyone in the pool or else you have adverse selection.  If ACA is allowed to play out, in the long run the costs should be more evenly spread out. With increased diversification, volatility drops and so does risk, which is a cost and will lead to a lower price.

Inevitably we all need health care. Previously, the insured where already paying the cost of the uninsured...through bad debt expense passed on to the consumer.   Unless you completely deregulate health care and allow doctors to turn away patients without insurance, or demand cash up front, you need everyone in the pool to pay their share.  And I believe everyone, regardless of means, should have access to health care. 

Yes, those examples are called anecdotes. I can find some too! Wouldn't it be fun to compare? We could both do sanctimonious do it for little Wanda pleas based on them. It'll be fun!

So reimbursement rates have been driven down—but premiums are still up. How can that be? I have an explanation: the reimbursement rates for prescriptions are only a small fraction of the cost of healthcare, which is largely driven by other factors.

When you expand a risk pool by adding healthy people you spread he costs of covering sick people over more healthy people. But healthy people by and large already had insurance. There were exceptions: folks who didn't see the value proposition in insurance, since they weren't likely to need it and would just end up carrying the load for others. A lot of them still don't have insurance—it's cheaper to pay the penalty for not having insurance than it is to buy insurance. Or they wait until they get sick to get it, which is a strategy that works when they can't be turned down for a pre-existing condition.

If the ACA had been pitched honestly we'd have been told your rates will go up, the value will go down, and the extra you'll be spending will subsidize sick people who wouldn't otherwise have insurance there would be less to complain about today. You could make a case for that. But it wasn't pitched that way. It was sold dishonestly—even the name (Affordable Care Act) is a lie.

Go ahead and argue that it was the right thing to do, and that the ends justified the means. But to do so means that the public isn't to be trusted with decisions like this. They're just pawns to be manipulated by elites who know what's best for us and we should just shut up and pay the bill.
 
"But healthy people by and large already had insurance."

Not true.  

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_insurance_coverage_in_the_United_States

According to the United States Census Bureau, in 2012 there were 48.0 million people in the US (15.4% of the population) who were without health insurance.

The causes of this rate of uninsurance remain a matter of political debate. Rising insurance costs have contributed to a trend in which fewer employers are offering health insurance, and many employers are managing costs by requiring higher employee contributions. Many of the uninsured are the working poor or are unemployed. Others are healthy and choose to go without it. Some have been rejected by insurance companies and are considered "uninsurable". Some are without health insurance only temporarily. Some choose faith-based alternatives to health insurance.

...

It has been estimated that nearly one-fifth of the uninsured population is able to afford insurance, almost one quarter is eligible for public coverage, and the remaining 56% need financial assistance (8.9% of all Americans). An estimated 5 million of those without health insurance are considered "uninsurable" because ofpre-existing conditions. A recent study concluded that 15% of people shopping online for health insurance are considered "uninsurable" because of a pre-existing condition, or for being overweight. This label does not necessarily mean they can never get health insurance, but that they will not qualify for standard individual coverage. People with similar health status can be covered via employer-provided health insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid. 

"If the ACA had been pitched honestly we'd have been told your rates will go up, the value will go down, and the extra you'll be spending will subsidize sick people who wouldn't otherwise have insurance there would be less to complain about today. You could make a case for that. But it wasn't pitched that way. It was sold dishonestly—even the name (Affordable Care Act) is a lie."

Wow, do you work for Karl Rove or some other purveyor of disinformation? No one had a firm idea prior to the start of the ACA about what was going to happen. The insurance companies like United HealthCare that lost big money over the past two years sure didn't. Many of them offered premiums that were too low—not out of some need to mislead people but because they miscalculated costs. The government didn't lie in its predictions about the number of healthy people who signed up for insurance; the latest figure is that about half the expected number signed up, which decreases the risk pool. It's a big problem, but it's not one that the federal government quietly knew would happen. 

Spare us your whining about elites manipulating pawns. The ACA was an initial step to the reform of massively complex and enormous health care system. It has correctable problems. So did Medicare and Medicaid during their first years. Or were those also nefarious schemes foisted upon us by our overlords? 

"Go ahead and argue that it was the right thing to do, and that the ends justified the means. But to do so means that the public isn't to be trusted with decisions like this. " 

WTF is this supposed to mean? The ACA was in full public view in Congressional committee discussions and floor debates. There was a massive amount of analysis and discussion of the bill and the law after its passage. The general public, the health insurance companies, health care providers and state officials all had access to information and commented on that information. The ACA had no deep, dark secrets or lies foisted upon the public. Find some other conspiracy theory to push.
 
 
BTW that 2.3% medical device tax was hardly a big deal. 

https://www.brookings.edu/opinions/5-questions-about-the-medical-device-tax-and-its-potential-for-repeal/


A report from the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service, released last week, concluded that the tax is unlikely to hurt the profits of device companies, estimating that it will reduce industry output and employment by no more than .2 percent. CRS states, “The effect on the price of health care, however, will most likely be negligible because of the small size of the tax and small share of health care spending attributable to medical devices.” A separate report from Ernst & Young last month finds that domestic revenues for medical technology firms grew 4 percent to $336 billion in 2013, the first year the tax went into effect – about the same rate from 2012, indicating that the industry seems financially stable for now. 



It's also been suspended for two years as of Dec. 2015: 

http://www.fiercebiotech.com/medical-devices/updated-medical-device-tax-suspended-1-8t-federal-budget 


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