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Index » Radio Paradise/General » General Discussion » Cause of Poverty Page: 1, 2  Next
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R_P

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Posted: Sep 11, 2019 - 10:11pm


kcar

kcar Avatar



Posted: Nov 21, 2018 - 2:28pm

 ScottFromWyoming wrote:


 kcar wrote:
There may be in tax-schedule calculations an attempt to ensure that the rich feel the same financial pinch as the poor do when paying taxes. For instance,  a $1 million/yr earner may reduce her spending by 5% if she has to pay $250K in taxes while a $10K earner may reduce her spending by 5% if she has to pay $1K in taxes. They pay different rates of income tax but reduce spending by the same amount. I don't know if that equality is a desired target for governments when calculating tax rates.  

 
 
A $1M earner who faces a new tax of 10% will save less, but spending will be generally unaffected, unless they were already living beyond their means (not inconceivable in some locations).  They may say they put off buying a new car for a year or two to keep saving at the pre-tax rate, but my understanding is that is relatively rare in the short term. The $10K earner who's now taking home only $9K will spend $1K less than before, but in either case, will spend 100% of available income.

 

Yeah, I'd agree with that thinking. But again: the $10K earner who has to shift from a progressive income tax to a 10% income tax rate will have to make very hard choices because s/he can't afford as much food or heat or medical care—the necessities. Flat income taxes hurt the poor more than the rich. 

I'll make a cynical guess and say this: I think that the federal income tax schedule is highly susceptible to political influence. If you take a look that the instructions for the 1040, they're a welter of carve-outs and exceptions and strange tax-saving provisions. The instructions are a political document, a form of tax-related gerrymandering that caters to the rich and powerful. My guess is that even if you could pass a flat income tax in the US, the rich and powerful would find ways to defer taxes on their income, or re-define their wealth away from income towards investment earnings, or claim their income from "vital" industries should be taxed less, etc. 


I think our taxation systems are always going to be susceptible to gaming and influence. 


BTW—did anyone watch "Friday Night Lights" the TV show? There was a brilliant scene or two about rezoning the town's (Dillon) school districts. The big football boosters were up in arms because the new rezoning had excluded a number of places that had long been sources of great football talent from Dillon's district. So the boosters gather in the backroom of a bar and re-draw the zone lines, zigging over onto Hobart Street to include the Jones brothers (promising linebackers!) and zagging onto Darlington Road to pick up members of the extended Jackson family...

The zone lines turn into something like the tracks of a wandering, drunken ant. The upright football coach hears about this meeting to "fix" the zone lines and drops in to see what the hell is going on. The boosters politely tell him that they've got the matter in hand and that Coach should find somewhere else to be. And yes, the "fixed" school district zone lines get approved. {#Cowboy}


haresfur

haresfur Avatar

Location: The Golden Triangle
Gender: Male


Posted: Nov 21, 2018 - 1:56pm

 pigtail wrote:

Interesting......thanks :)

 
What she said {#Arrowu}
ScottFromWyoming

ScottFromWyoming Avatar

Location: Powell
Gender: Male


Posted: Nov 21, 2018 - 10:09am



 kcar wrote:
There may be in tax-schedule calculations an attempt to ensure that the rich feel the same financial pinch as the poor do when paying taxes. For instance,  a $1 million/yr earner may reduce her spending by 5% if she has to pay $250K in taxes while a $10K earner may reduce her spending by 5% if she has to pay $1K in taxes. They pay different rates of income tax but reduce spending by the same amount. I don't know if that equality is a desired target for governments when calculating tax rates.  

 
 
A $1M earner who faces a new tax of 10% will save less, but spending will be generally unaffected, unless they were already living beyond their means (not inconceivable in some locations).  They may say they put off buying a new car for a year or two to keep saving at the pre-tax rate, but my understanding is that is relatively rare in the short term. The $10K earner who's now taking home only $9K will spend $1K less than before, but in either case, will spend 100% of available income.
pigtail

pigtail Avatar

Location: Southern California
Gender: Female


Posted: Nov 21, 2018 - 9:50am

 islander wrote:


 haresfur wrote:


Your neighbours to the north already showed what a terrible idea this is. But an over-reaction to inequality is ultimately caused by the inequality. People are usually really bad at seeing the long term consequences of their greed that can come back to bite them. If the rules and history are stacked against people rising out of poverty, then you need to change the rules. How? I don't know.

And if China is the only investor willing to take the risks and reap the rewards, then capitalists would say, good on 'em.

 
Nick Hanauer has some interesting things to say about this, and he's certainly from a different perspective than most of us.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/r...


 
Interesting......thanks :)
islander

islander Avatar

Location: Seattle
Gender: Male


Posted: Nov 20, 2018 - 7:59pm



 haresfur wrote:


Your neighbours to the north already showed what a terrible idea this is. But an over-reaction to inequality is ultimately caused by the inequality. People are usually really bad at seeing the long term consequences of their greed that can come back to bite them. If the rules and history are stacked against people rising out of poverty, then you need to change the rules. How? I don't know.

And if China is the only investor willing to take the risks and reap the rewards, then capitalists would say, good on 'em.



 
Nick Hanauer has some interesting things to say about this, and he's certainly from a different perspective than most of us.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/r...



pigtail

pigtail Avatar

Location: Southern California
Gender: Female


Posted: Nov 20, 2018 - 2:45pm

 kcar wrote:
 pigtail wrote:
 How about a flat income tax across the board for everyone?  If you make 50k you pay 10% or whatever the optimal percentage would be.  No deductions for this or that just a flat income tax percentage for all.  You make 50k you pay 5k.  You may 5mil you pay 500K.  I'm sure there will be arguments saying this or that is wrong with a flat tax so what is it?

 


A flat income tax is effectively regressive—it is more onerous to people making little money than it is to people making a lot of money. 

If you make $10K/year and are taxed @ 10%, you only have $9K of disposable income. That income reduction can be disastrous for someone living on an economic knife-edge: it can make purchase of necessities like food, rent, medicine almost impossible. 
If you make $1 million/year and taxed @10%, you have $900K of disposable income. That income reduction probably won't alter your lifestyle except possibly for big-ticket purchases. Certainly it won't affect your ability to pay for necessities. 
The US has long sought to have progressive income taxes. Republicans have long complained that such taxes are disincentives to rich people who (supposedly) drive job growth in the US, or are attacks against the moneyed classes. Progressive income taxes are no such thing. They're an attempt to pay for necessary goods and services (like schools, police and fire depts) by taking disproportionately more money from people who can afford to pay more. 
There may be in tax-schedule calculations an attempt to ensure that the rich feel the same financial pinch as the poor do when paying taxes. For instance,  a $1 million/yr earner may reduce her spending by 5% if she has to pay $250K in taxes while a $10K earner may reduce her spending by 5% if she has to pay $1K in taxes. They pay different rates of income tax but reduce spending by the same amount. I don't know if that equality is a desired target for governments when calculating tax rates. 
Here's a brief summary of progressive vs. flat taxes: https://www.investopedia.com/ask/answers/042815/progressive-tax-more-fair-flat-tax.asp

BTW: we do have many flat taxes in this country, eg. sales taxes on food or prepared food, gas, etc. 
 
shrugs.........Sounds better than what is going on now.  We have these so called progressive taxes but the rich get the benefit of infused loopholes and the working class pays the bulk.  Those who are poverty stricken supposedly get relief from our social programs that are paid with taxes.  The problem as I see it, is we are not paying taxes fairly on a progressive plane either.  Something's gotta give.  What will the rich and top 1% do when the working class are finally poverty stricken as well?  When there is no one to collect taxes from, it will get real urgent, real fast.
haresfur

haresfur Avatar

Location: The Golden Triangle
Gender: Male


Posted: Nov 20, 2018 - 2:15pm

 kurtster wrote:
That is the part that everyone kinda ignores.  It is never a one time reckoning.  The punishment will go on forever.  We're still dealing with our Civil War and reparations after over 150 years.  If you're white, you surely benefited from slavery somehow and the sins of the predecessors are still your sins to bear regardless of individual circumstances. 
 
And the China thing ... man that's just the pits.  Africa is their's and ain't no one gonna stop em.
{#Hug}
 
And if you are black you are still dealing with the consequences of slavery and the system of bigotry that grew out of it.

Yeah, if you are white, of southern heritage, and rich ancestry, you surely did and continue to benefit from the sins of your predecessors. If you are white and poor, you didn't benefit as much but continuing to prop up your precarious existence by keeping other people down is foolish. There is plenty of capital available to the South these days so the consequences are really in the imbedded culture that refuses to change.
haresfur

haresfur Avatar

Location: The Golden Triangle
Gender: Male


Posted: Nov 20, 2018 - 2:07pm

 wallacehartley wrote:
How about simply taking away property from richer folks and giving it to the poorer folks, like we will shortly be doing here in South Africa?
Your real estate, accounts, business, savings, medical savings....all of it!
 
Our Constitution is about to be amended to provide for expropriation of any property without compensation - because bad bad white people are overloaded with white privilege, so whatever they have worked for will be taken away and redistributed and everyone will become a tenant of the State and live happily ever after!
The white people will still be bad bad white people and candidates for re-education camps, but at least they will also be poor.
 
It's a great and neat solution, just like it was in Venezuela and Zimbabwe.
When production plummets because of a lack of investor confidence and capital - well then, thanks, China!
We don't mind becoming a vassal State of the Great and Glorious DIctator-for-life!
Viva, viva!!
 
*Please forgive my somewhat SARCASTIC rant here - I see my country heading down the tubes in a big way and it irks me because it isn't necessary and is based on historical inaccuracies and ineptitudes.
 
I agree 100% with you, J....the last thing we need is a policy that discourages/punishes producers/creators/entrepreneurs etc.
 
We will shortly prove it to you.
 
Get your popcorn ready,.....
 
 
 

Your neighbours to the north already showed what a terrible idea this is.
 
But an over-reaction to inequality is ultimately caused by the inequality. People are usually really bad at seeing the long term consequences of their greed that can come back to bite them. If the rules and history are stacked against people rising out of poverty, then you need to change the rules. How? I don't know.

And if China is the only investor willing to take the risks and reap the rewards, then capitalists would say, good on 'em.
 
 


 


kurtster

kurtster Avatar

Location: drifting
Gender: Male


Posted: Nov 19, 2018 - 11:37pm

 wallacehartley wrote:
How about simply taking away property from richer folks and giving it to the poorer folks, like we will shortly be doing here in South Africa?
Your real estate, accounts, business, savings, medical savings....all of it!
 
Our Constitution is about to be amended to provide for expropriation of any property without compensation - because bad bad white people are overloaded with white privilege, so whatever they have worked for will be taken away and redistributed and everyone will become a tenant of the State and live happily ever after!

The white people will still be bad bad white people and candidates for re-education camps, but at least they will also be poor.
 
It's a great and neat solution, just like it was in Venezuela and Zimbabwe.
When production plummets because of a lack of investor confidence and capital - well then, thanks, China!
We don't mind becoming a vassal State of the Great and Glorious DIctator-for-life!
Viva, viva!!
 
*Please forgive my somewhat SARCASTIC rant here - I see my country heading down the tubes in a big way and it irks me because it isn't necessary and is based on historical inaccuracies and ineptitudes.
 
I agree 100% with you, J....the last thing we need is a policy that discourages/punishes producers/creators/entrepreneurs etc.
 
We will shortly prove it to you.
 
Get your popcorn ready,.....
 
 

That is the part that everyone kinda ignores.  It is never a one time reckoning.  The punishment will go on forever.  We're still dealing with our Civil War and reparations after over 150 years.  If you're white, you surely benefited from slavery somehow and the sins of the predecessors are still your sins to bear regardless of individual circumstances. 
 
And the China thing ... man that's just the pits.  Africa is their's and ain't no one gonna stop em.
{#Hug}
 
 
 


 


wallacehartley

wallacehartley Avatar

Location: Cape Town South Africa
Gender: Male


Posted: Nov 19, 2018 - 11:07pm

 miamizsun wrote:


it's ok to be skeptical

and i agree about efficiency in every possible way (and i think you can see some of my posts in the green/tech threads)

what i'm saying is that at the hands of politicians we have massive debt, deficits and unfunded liabilities

further if you look at the past estimates that politicians have made regarding any major social spending program like social security, medicare, rx drug program, war, etc., they have been drastically wrong

it's painfully obvious that they're just not good at this (budgeting and estimating costs)

government literally has no money, they take it/get it from us and when they (want to) spend more than they've collected, they borrow/go into debt

what is debt? debt is simply a claim/tax on future production of the producer/taxpayer

someone borrows money that they do not have with a contractual/structured plan to repay it from future earnings

the demographics aren't in our favor either, the baby boomers who have been at their peak earning and producing years funding these programs, are beginning to retire and are going to seriously drawn down/lean on these programs

so these programs have gone through their zenith of funding (accumulation phase) so to speak, and now are going into the payout phase

these programs are going to be stressed in a major way

we need to encourage strong production and innovation (or as much as possible) if we want to collect taxes to help offset this

the last thing we need is policy that discourages/punishes producers/creators

there are other variables we can discuss but i hope you get my point

regards

 

How about simply taking away property from richer folks and giving it to the poorer folks, like we will shortly be doing here in South Africa?
Your real estate, accounts, business, savings, medical savings....all of it!
 
Our Constitution is about to be amended to provide for expropriation of any property without compensation - because bad bad white people are overloaded with white privilege, so whatever they have worked for will be taken away and redistributed and everyone will become a tenant of the State and live happily ever after!
The white people will still be bad bad white people and candidates for re-education camps, but at least they will also be poor.
 
It's a great and neat solution, just like it was in Venezuela and Zimbabwe.
When production plummets because of a lack of investor confidence and capital - well then, thanks, China!
We don't mind becoming a vassal State of the Great and Glorious DIctator-for-life!
Viva, viva!!
 
*Please forgive my somewhat SARCASTIC rant here - I see my country heading down the tubes in a big way and it irks me because it isn't necessary and is based on historical inaccuracies and ineptitudes.
 
I agree 100% with you, J....the last thing we need is a policy that discourages/punishes producers/creators/entrepreneurs etc.
 
We will shortly prove it to you.
 
Get your popcorn ready,.....
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

kcar

kcar Avatar



Posted: Nov 19, 2018 - 8:47pm

 miamizsun wrote:


it's ok to be skeptical

and i agree about efficiency in every possible way (and i think you can see some of my posts in the green/tech threads)

what i'm saying is that at the hands of politicians we have massive debt, deficits and unfunded liabilities

further if you look at the past estimates that politicians have made regarding any major social spending program like social security, medicare, rx drug program, war, etc., they have been drastically wrong

it's painfully obvious that they're just not good at this (budgeting and estimating costs)

government literally has no money, they take it/get it from us and when they (want to) spend more than they've collected, they borrow/go into debt

what is debt? debt is simply a claim/tax on future production of the producer/taxpayer

someone borrows money that they do not have with a contractual/structured plan to repay it from future earnings

the demographics aren't in our favor either, the baby boomers who have been at their peak earning and producing years funding these programs, are beginning to retire and are going to seriously drawn down/lean on these programs

so these programs have gone through their zenith of funding (accumulation phase) so to speak, and now are going into the payout phase

these programs are going to be stressed in a major way

we need to encourage strong production and innovation (or as much as possible) if we want to collect taxes to help offset this

the last thing we need is policy that discourages/punishes producers/creators

there are other variables we can discuss but i hope you get my point

regards

 


Again (I think), for the most the United States doesn't have an issue with manufacturing prowess or innovation. Last time I checked, the US is still the largest manufacturer in the world and the leader in number of patents granted. Our national debt is not hampering our ability to produce or innovate. If you disagree, please provide evidence. 

Our national debt is caused by, in part, an unwillingness to collect more tax revenue and/or cut big parts of our budget—Social Security (plus unemployment and labor) and Medicare plus heath (23% of mandatory spending apiece and 15% of total spending apiece), and military expenditures (over half of discretionary spending). I'm getting these percentages from here: 


https://www.nationalpriorities.org/budget-basics/federal-budget-101/spending/


This page also notes that the dollar amount of all annual tax breaks provided by the federal government is larger than the dollar amount of annual discretionary spending. The chart on this page refers to the 2015 tax year, so I don't know how the 2018 tax "reform" changed the chart. I expect tax breaks actually grew in dollar amount because of the 2018 law. But if we were less reluctant to get rid of most or all tax breaks, we'd borrow considerably less money. 
Another reason for our large national debt is the ease with which we can borrow money and the irresponsible tax cuts of GW Bush and Trump. 
I think this is your main point: 


"the last thing we need is policy that discourages/punishes producers/creators"


I assume you think that our regulatory environment is too harsh or restrictive. I don't think it is. Neither does Martin Feldstein

Why the U.S. Is Still Richer Than Every Other Large Country
...

In short, the U.S. remains richer than its peers. But why?

I can think of 10 features that distinguish America from other industrial economies, which I outline in a recent essay for the National Bureau of Economic Research, from which this article is adapted.


...

*   Labor markets that generally link workers and jobs unimpeded by large trade unions, state-owned enterprises, or excessively restrictive labor regulations. Less than 7% of the private sector U.S. labor force is unionized, and there are virtually no state-owned enterprises. While the U.S. does regulate working conditions and hiring, the rules are much less onerous than in Europe. As a result, workers have a better chance of finding the right job, firms find it easier to innovate, and new firms find it easier to get started.
*   A favorable regulatory environment. Although U.S. regulations are far from perfect, they are less burdensome on businesses than the regulations imposed by European countries and the European Union.
rhahl

rhahl Avatar



Posted: Nov 19, 2018 - 4:23pm

 pigtail wrote:
 How about a flat income tax across the board for everyone?  If you make 50k you pay 10% or whatever the optimal percentage would be.  No deductions for this or that just a flat income tax percentage for all.  You make 50k you pay 5k.  You may 5mil you pay 500K.  I'm sure there will be arguments saying this or that is wrong with a flat tax so what is it?

 
It does not address pre-tax maldistribution of income, and it does not correct post-tax maldistribution of income. That is why the flat tax idea is so popular with libertarians.
kcar

kcar Avatar



Posted: Nov 19, 2018 - 4:21pm

 pigtail wrote:
 How about a flat income tax across the board for everyone?  If you make 50k you pay 10% or whatever the optimal percentage would be.  No deductions for this or that just a flat income tax percentage for all.  You make 50k you pay 5k.  You may 5mil you pay 500K.  I'm sure there will be arguments saying this or that is wrong with a flat tax so what is it?

 


A flat income tax is effectively regressive—it is more onerous to people making little money than it is to people making a lot of money. 

If you make $10K/year and are taxed @ 10%, you only have $9K of disposable income. That income reduction can be disastrous for someone living on an economic knife-edge: it can make purchase of necessities like food, rent, medicine almost impossible. 


If you make $1 million/year and taxed @10%, you have $900K of disposable income. That income reduction probably won't alter your lifestyle except possibly for big-ticket purchases. Certainly it won't affect your ability to pay for necessities. 


The US has long sought to have progressive income taxes. Republicans have long complained that such taxes are disincentives to rich people who (supposedly) drive job growth in the US, or are attacks against the moneyed classes. Progressive income taxes are no such thing. They're an attempt to pay for necessary goods and services (like schools, police and fire depts) by taking disproportionately more money from people who can afford to pay more. 


There may be in tax-schedule calculations an attempt to ensure that the rich feel the same financial pinch as the poor do when paying taxes. For instance,  a $1 million/yr earner may reduce her spending by 5% if she has to pay $250K in taxes while a $10K earner may reduce her spending by 5% if she has to pay $1K in taxes. They pay different rates of income tax but reduce spending by the same amount. I don't know if that equality is a desired target for governments when calculating tax rates. 


Here's a brief summary of progressive vs. flat taxes: https://www.investopedia.com/ask/answers/042815/progressive-tax-more-fair-flat-tax.asp

BTW: we do have many flat taxes in this country, eg. sales taxes on food or prepared food, gas, etc. 

pigtail

pigtail Avatar

Location: Southern California
Gender: Female


Posted: Nov 19, 2018 - 3:18pm

 miamizsun wrote:


it's ok to be skeptical

and i agree about efficiency in every possible way (and i think you can see some of my posts in the green/tech threads)

what i'm saying is that at the hands of politicians we have massive debt, deficits and unfunded liabilities

further if you look at the past estimates that politicians have made regarding any major social spending program like social security, medicare, rx drug program, war, etc., they have been drastically wrong

it's painfully obvious that they're just not good at this (budgeting and estimating costs)

government literally has no money, they take it/get it from us and when they (want to) spend more than they've collected, they borrow/go into debt

what is debt? debt is simply a claim/tax on future production of the producer/taxpayer

someone borrows money that they do not have with a contractual/structured plan to repay it from future earnings

the demographics aren't in our favor either, the baby boomers who have been at their peak earning and producing years funding these programs, are beginning to retire and are going to seriously drawn down/lean on these programs

so these programs have gone through their zenith of funding (accumulation phase) so to speak, and now are going into the payout phase

these programs are going to be stressed in a major way

we need to encourage strong production and innovation (or as much as possible) if we want to collect taxes to help offset this

the last thing we need is policy that discourages/punishes producers/creators

there are other variables we can discuss but i hope you get my point

regards

  How about a flat income tax across the board for everyone?  If you make 50k you pay 10% or whatever the optimal percentage would be.  No deductions for this or that just a flat income tax percentage for all.  You make 50k you pay 5k.  You may 5mil you pay 500K.  I'm sure there will be arguments saying this or that is wrong with a flat tax so what is it?


miamizsun

miamizsun Avatar

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


Posted: Nov 19, 2018 - 6:03am

 kcar wrote:
I am highly skeptical that the relative skimpiness of the USA's social welfare safety net is due to an inadequate "production system" or over-regulation. You apparently assume that the insufficient money spent on social welfare in this country is due to high costs of goods and services and not a reluctance to expand social welfare programs. 

You have a point if we're talking about healthcare and housing costs but those costs aren't restricted or caused by attitudes about social welfare programs. We could reduce our housing costs by changing the production system—not to increase its "robustness" but to increase its efficiency. I saw one news piece about construction costs rising so high in places like San Francisco that the developers estimated per-unit construction costs approached $800K. Some developers were responding by relying on off-site pre-fab construction methods. 
https://medium.com/sidewalk-talk/when-affordable-housing-starts-in-a-factory-20bad64d4fe0
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/07/business/economy/modular-housing.html

 

it's ok to be skeptical

and i agree about efficiency in every possible way (and i think you can see some of my posts in the green/tech threads)

what i'm saying is that at the hands of politicians we have massive debt, deficits and unfunded liabilities

further if you look at the past estimates that politicians have made regarding any major social spending program like social security, medicare, rx drug program, war, etc., they have been drastically wrong

it's painfully obvious that they're just not good at this (budgeting and estimating costs)

government literally has no money, they take it/get it from us and when they (want to) spend more than they've collected, they borrow/go into debt

what is debt? debt is simply a claim/tax on future production of the producer/taxpayer

someone borrows money that they do not have with a contractual/structured plan to repay it from future earnings

the demographics aren't in our favor either, the baby boomers who have been at their peak earning and producing years funding these programs, are beginning to retire and are going to seriously drawn down/lean on these programs

so these programs have gone through their zenith of funding (accumulation phase) so to speak, and now are going into the payout phase

these programs are going to be stressed in a major way

we need to encourage strong production and innovation (or as much as possible) if we want to collect taxes to help offset this

the last thing we need is policy that discourages/punishes producers/creators

there are other variables we can discuss but i hope you get my point

regards


kcar

kcar Avatar



Posted: Nov 18, 2018 - 2:54pm

 miamizsun wrote:


an easy answer might be

poverty is simply the lack of property

property being food, shelter, clothing (more and better products that improve the quality of our lives)

everyone consumes, but not everyone produces

if we want a generous "social safety net" welfare state, we're going to need an even more robust production system

reasonable regulation can be effective

over-regulating peaceful producers of products by penalizing them (confiscation of their legit property, allowing monopolies, etc.) is a recipe for social disaster

we've got people (ignorant as hell and armed to the teeth) that are sure they know how to organize millions of peaceful voluntary transactions daily

regards
 


I am highly skeptical that the relative skimpiness of the USA's social welfare safety net is due to an inadequate "production system" or over-regulation. You apparently assume that the insufficient money spent on social welfare in this country is due to high costs of goods and services and not a reluctance to expand social welfare programs. 

You have a point if we're talking about healthcare and housing costs but those costs aren't restricted or caused by attitudes about social welfare programs. We could reduce our housing costs by changing the production system—not to increase its "robustness" but to increase its efficiency. I saw one news piece about construction costs rising so high in places like San Francisco that the developers estimated per-unit construction costs approached $800K. Some developers were responding by relying on off-site pre-fab construction methods. 


https://medium.com/sidewalk-talk/when-affordable-housing-starts-in-a-factory-20bad64d4fe0


https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/07/business/economy/modular-housing.html
haresfur

haresfur Avatar

Location: The Golden Triangle
Gender: Male


Posted: Nov 18, 2018 - 1:06pm

 kurtster wrote:
There are many definitions of poverty and as many causes. 

 
Lack of money has a lot to do with it
miamizsun

miamizsun Avatar

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


Posted: Nov 18, 2018 - 10:21am

 kurtster wrote:
There are many definitions of poverty and as many causes. 
 

an easy answer might be

poverty is simply the lack of property

property being food, shelter, clothing (more and better products that improve the quality of our lives)

everyone consumes, but not everyone produces

if we want a generous "social safety net" welfare state, we're going to need an even more robust production system

reasonable regulation can be effective

over-regulating peaceful producers of products by penalizing them (confiscation of their legit property, allowing monopolies, etc.) is a recipe for social disaster

we've got people (ignorant as hell and armed to the teeth) that are sure they know how to organize millions of peaceful voluntary transactions daily

regards

kcar

kcar Avatar



Posted: Nov 17, 2018 - 8:04pm

 islander wrote:
Several other points here:

Yes, a 'random' condition can lead to an inequitable outcome. But is a random condition like this analogous to how our society operates, or how we should want it to?

I don't think that this means inequity is inevitable (although to some extent I would say it is). I'd say this is a good example of how we should be careful in how we set our policies, not whether or not we should have policies at all. 

The real question is how much inequity is bad for a society, and how much control of policies comes from that inequity.   I think we can agree that the options of a) give all the money to the government and let them distribute it equally among the populace and b) Give all the money to Islander and let him distribute it as he sees fit are probably both too extreme to be good solutions. So somewhere in the middle we have to agree on a level of regulation and field leveling that keeps us from armed revolution.  How are we doing with that today?
 


I'll leave it others to decide whether you've hijacked the thread. But some of your thoughts reminded me of a troubling NYT article about the "competition" to win the location of Amazon HQ2. The piece notes that it was largely inevitable that Amazon chose large, successful cities because it wasn't going to get the "knowledge spillovers and agglomeration effects" it sought from places like Richmond VA or Reno NV. Our economic trends are rewarding the large, rich cities and letting the smaller, poorer places fall behind. As the NYT piece, notes "(t)his divergence, underway for about 30 years, has accelerated since the Great Recession."   It's not clear how federal policies can redistribute economic opportunity or spread the rise of superstar cities to neighboring ones lagging behind. 

Idle thought: if you told me back in the mid-90s that DC was a superstar city, I'd have laughed in your face. The Washington City Paper, a free weekly, had a "Livability Meter" in each issue back then that offered a take on how pleasant it was to live here. The meter was often around "6" on a 1-10 point scale. 


 In Superstar Cities, the Rich Get Richer, and They Get Amazon

New York and Washington are leaving the rest of the country behind. Companies like Amazon explain why.


A small number of rich and internationally connected cities keep increasing their economic advantages — and as a result, the inequality widens between them and everywhere else.

Because of the pull of “superstar” cities, economists and policymakers fear what will happen elsewhere if the winners keep winning while many smaller communities are left behind. It’s possible Amazon executives genuinely believed a year ago that they might find a more surprising home (many observers are not so charitable). But, ultimately, the superstar magnet pulls them, too.

“It’s just absolutely hard-wired into technology economies,” said Mark Muro, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. “It’s not just a sort of interesting thing that happens — it’s inherent to the technology.”

Between 2010 and 2017, according to Brookings, nearly half of the country’s total employment growth occurred in just 20 large metro areas (places that are home to about a third of the population).
The Washington and New York regions alone accounted for about half of the net increase in business establishments across the country between 2007 and 2016, according to the Economic Innovation Group, which tracks economic inequality across the country.

In previous economic expansions, E.I.G. has found, the benefits were more broadly felt, and growth was driven by more places, including rural communities. Today, data points about the national economy no longer describe well what’s happening on the ground in many places.

Part of what has changed is that the American economy has become dominated more by companies like Amazon, which produce services instead of manufactured products, and thus employ software engineers instead of assembly line workers.

Drop a big Amazon headquarters into Washington or New York, and economists expect the 50,000 workers there to be more productive than if the same 50,000 jobs were dropped into Indianapolis. Simply putting them in New York, near so many other tech workers, increases the likelihood that Amazon invents more services, connects to more markets, makes more money... Opportunity will concentrate further.

“This is too profound a structural shift to reverse,” Mr. Lettieri (president of the Economic Innovation Group) said. “It’s not going to reverse. That’s just the nature of the economy today.”

But maybe we can slow down this shift, he said, or find better ways to ensure that more people get to benefit from what’s happening in superstar cities, and that more places get to join in this process. Mr. Lettieri argues that what’s good for New York doesn’t have to be bad for other parts of the country.




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