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Five Economic Reforms Millennials Should Be Fighting For

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TheAdvocate

Platinum Member
Mar 7, 2005
2,563
7
81
For identical repetitive task, yes, machines are replacing people.

For everything else people still have to do.

Chances are moonbeam has never worked in a factory.
Pick a very high % of all of the current labor force - just toss a number out there. That's the percentage of current jobs that will become unnecessary. 95%? Yep, within the realm of possibility. Most everyone left working as a necessity will be overseers of processes - Q&A, problem solving, troubleshooting. It's abstract, but it's also very likely, assuming we do not destroy ourselves in the process of getting there.

Most of everyone still working will be doing so voluntarily. Those currently obsessed with social constructs and hierarchies based on the accumulation of wealth should thank their creator that they were born in this time. It won't last forever. When that is no longer the basis for existence and status on a societal scale, what will people do with themselves?
 

Texashiker

Lifer
Dec 18, 2010
18,762
136
106
www.countrylifenet.com
Pick a very high % of all of the current labor force - just toss a number out there. That's the percentage of current jobs that will become unnecessary. 95%? Yep, within the realm of possibility.

<snip>

When that is no longer the basis for existence and status on a societal scale, what will people do with themselves?
Are you being sarcastic?
 

Atreus21

Lifer
Aug 21, 2007
12,025
571
126
And yet this article reads *exactly* like a compendium of virtually every leftwing-loon economic non-argument we're all subjected to on a daily basis.

One does like to think that belief in such old, discredited ideas is just tongue-in-cheek, but no, people actually believe such horseshit. Unfortunately, far too many holding a public office as well.
Well, to be fair, I don't think your average left-leaner advocates for the abolition of private property.
 

Vic

Elite Member
Jun 12, 2001
47,261
7,031
126
I don't see how you got that out of being asked not to generalize with the intuitive powers of an eight year old. It's times like this that I'm reminded how moronic a good portion of the member base here.
If you think it's bad here, just head over to Facebook and look at the sheer idiocy that people will post there under their real names and in front of their friends and family.
 

Bowfinger

Lifer
Nov 17, 2002
15,776
392
126
If you think it's bad here, just head over to Facebook and look at the sheer idiocy that people will post there under their real names and in front of their friends and family.
:D

Ain't that the truth. As much as I've mostly lost hope of having any productive, informed discussions here, this place is an oasis compared to much of what I've seen on Facebook or in public comments on various public news sites. Holy cow, there are some profoundly stupid people in this country ... and they seem to have really strong opinions.

Good to see you again, Vic.
 

Bowfinger

Lifer
Nov 17, 2002
15,776
392
126
A great rolling stone article!

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/five-economic-reforms-millennials-should-be-fighting-for-20140103

1. Guaranteed Work for Everybody

Unemployment blows. The easiest and most direct solution is for the government to guarantee that everyone who wants to contribute productively to society is able to earn a decent living in the public sector. There are millions of people who want to work, and there's tons of work that needs doing &#8211; it's a no-brainer. And this idea isn't as radical as it might sound: It's similar to what the federal Works Progress Administration made possible during Roosevelt's New Deal, and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. vocally supported a public-sector job guarantee in the 1960s.

A job guarantee that paid a living wage would anchor prices, drive up conditions for workers at megacorporations like Walmart and McDonald's, and target employment for the poor and long-term unemployed &#8211; people to whom conventional stimulus money rarely trickles all the way down. The program would automatically expand during private-sector downturns and contract during private-sector upswings, balancing out the business cycle and sending people from job to job, rather than job to unemployment, when times got tough.

Some economists have proposed running a job guarantee through the non-profit sector, which would make it even easier to suit the job to the worker. Imagine a world where people could contribute the skills that inspire them &#8211; teaching, tutoring, urban farming, cleaning up the environment, painting murals &#8211; rather than telemarketing or whatever other stupid tasks bosses need done to supplement their millions. Sounds nice, doesn't it?

2. Social Security for All

But let's think even bigger. Because as much as unemployment blows, so do jobs. What if people didn't have to work to survive? Enter the jaw-droppingly simple idea of a universal basic income, in which the government would just add a sum sufficient for subsistence to everyone's bank account every month. A proposal along these lines has been gaining traction in Switzerland, and it's starting to get a lot of attention here, too.

We live in the age of 3D printers and self-replicating robots. Actual human workers are increasingly surplus to requirement &#8211; that's one major reason why we have such a big unemployment problem. A universal basic income would address this epidemic at the root and provide everyone, in the words of Duke professor Kathi Weeks, "time to cultivate new needs for pleasures, activities, senses, passions, affects, and socialities that exceed the options of working and saving, producing and accumulating."

Put another way: A universal basic income, combined with a job guarantee and other social programs, could make participation in the labor force truly voluntary, thereby enabling people to get a life.

3. Take Back The Land

Ever noticed how much landlords blow? They don't really do anything to earn their money. They just claim ownership of buildings and charge people who actually work for a living the majority of our incomes for the privilege of staying in boxes that these owners often didn't build and rarely if ever improve. In a few years, my landlord will probably sell my building to another landlord and make off with the appreciated value of the land s/he also claims to own &#8211; which won't even get taxed, as long as s/he ploughs it right back into more real estate.

Think about how stupid that is. The value of the land has nothing to do with my idle, remote landlord; it reflects the nearby parks and subways and shops, which I have access to thanks to the community and the public. So why don't the community and the public derive the value and put it toward uses that benefit everyone? Because capitalism, is why.

The most mainstream way of flipping the script is a simple land-value tax. By targeting wealthy real estate owners and their free rides, we can fight inequality and poverty directly, make disastrous asset price bubbles impossible and curb Wall Street's hideous bloat. There are cooler ideas out there, too: Municipalities themselves can be big-time landowners, and groups can even create large-scale community land trusts so that the land is held in common. In any case, we have to stop letting rich people pretend they privately own what nature provided everyone.

4. Make Everything Owned by Everybody

Hoarders blow. Take, for instance, the infamous one percent, whose ownership of the capital stock of this country leads to such horrific inequality. "Capital stock" refers to two things here: the buildings and equipment that workers use to produce goods and services, and the stocks and bonds that represent ownership over the former. The top 10 percent's ownership of the means of production is represented by the fact that they control 80 percent of all financial assets.

This detachment means that there's a way easier way to collectivize wealth ownership than having to stage uprisings that seize the actual airplanes and warehouses and whatnot: Just buy up their stocks and bonds. When the government does that, it's called a sovereign wealth fund. Think of it like a big investment fund that buys up assets from the private sector and pays dividends to all permanent U.S. residents in the form of a universal basic income. Alaska actually already has a fund like this in place. If it's good enough for Levi Johnston, it's good enough for you.

5. A Public Bank in Every State

You know what else really blows? Wall Street. The whole point of a finance sector is supposed to be collecting the surplus that the whole economy has worked to produce, and channeling that surplus wealth toward its most socially valuable uses. It is difficult to overstate how completely awful our finance sector has been at accomplishing that basic goal. Let's try to change that by allowing state governments into the banking game.

There is only one state that currently has a public option for banking: North Dakota. When North Dakotans pay state taxes, the money gets deposited in the state's bank, which in turn offers cheap loans to farmers, students and businesses. The Bank of North Dakota doesn't make seedy, destined-to-default loans, slice them up inscrutably and sell them on a secondary market. It doesn't play around with incomprehensible derivatives and allow its executives to extract billions of dollars. It just makes loans and works with debtors to pay them off. Sounds nice, doesn't it?

If that idea &#8211; or any of the others described in this piece &#8211; sounds good to you, there's a bitter political struggle to be waged. Let's get to work.






soo what do you guys think!? great plan or what! this is failproof i don't see any problems! well ok..

1) where the jobs going to come from again!?

2) oh SS for everyone. nevermind about those jobs..it don't matter! you get paid for NOTHING!

3) lol landlords don't do anything? hahahahahh oh man. this one is kinda funny over all.

4) sure sure. everything owned by everybody. worked well in russia.

5) i really don't get this one. can someone clue me in?
I don't see much value in 2, 3, or 4. They sound all utopian in theory, but they deny real-world human nature.

I think #1 offers interesting discussion. I think it could be the workfare option for those unable to find private sector employment. It seems a better alternative than paying people to do nothing, serving the public interest while helping them maintain active work habits and covering their basic needs but still giving incentive to find private sector employment with better pay. That would be one of the challenges, that these workfare jobs could not be so lucrative that people want to make them careers.

I'm also not sure about #5. I agree the current mega-banks are ultimately harmful to America, but I question whether public banks are necessary. I think we could achieve much the same result by somehow shifting the balance between smaller local banks and the huge banking conglomerates. Perhaps we simply need to dismantle the big banks and then limit how big they can grow again.
 
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Nintendesert

Diamond Member
Mar 28, 2010
7,761
5
0
I don't see much value in 2, 3, or 4. They sound all utopian in theory, but I they deny real-world human nature.

I think #1 offers interesting discussion. I think it could be the workfare option for those unable to find private sector employment. It seems a better alternative than paying people to do nothing, serving the public interest while helping them maintain active work habits and covering their basic needs but still giving incentive to find private sector employment with better pay. That would be one of the challenges, that these workfare jobs could not be so lucrative that people want to make them careers.

I'm also not sure about #5. I agree the current mega-banks are ultimately harmful to America, but I question whether public banks are necessary. I think we could achieve much the same result by somehow shifting the balance between smaller local banks and the huge banking conglomerates. Perhaps we simply need to dismantle the big banks and then limit how big they can grow again.


There are already local credit unions damn near everywhere. So the option is there for people that don't want the big banks. I would have loved to see the big banks fail but unfortunately they got bailed out. :'(
 

PricklyPete

Lifer
Sep 17, 2002
14,716
164
106
Jesus Christ that article is a disaster. I'm not a ultra conservative, but I think anyone paying attention to history over the last 100 years realizes such heavy handed socialist concepts would result in economic disaster and a declining society. Human nature is just not compatible with such idealism.
 

TheAdvocate

Platinum Member
Mar 7, 2005
2,563
7
81
I don't see much value in 2, 3, or 4. They sound all utopian in theory, but they deny real-world human nature.

I think #1 offers interesting discussion. I think it could be the workfare option for those unable to find private sector employment. It seems a better alternative than paying people to do nothing, serving the public interest while helping them maintain active work habits and covering their basic needs but still giving incentive to find private sector employment with better pay. That would be one of the challenges, that these workfare jobs could not be so lucrative that people want to make them careers.

I'm also not sure about #5. I agree the current mega-banks are ultimately harmful to America, but I question whether public banks are necessary. I think we could achieve much the same result by somehow shifting the balance between smaller local banks and the huge banking conglomerates. Perhaps we simply need to dismantle the big banks and then limit how big they can grow again.
I tend to agree re: #1. We have plenty of infrastructure jobs that would provide a tangible benefit to our society and it beats paying straight welfare.

Re: #5 - that would involve rescinding the interstate deregulation of the banking industry that occured in the last few decades, leading to the massive national banks we have now (after they M&A'd their way to these sizes). The problem with the former model is that the consumers didnt have enough choice - they were stuck with the banks chartered in their states. The problem now is... not enough choice. Most of the competitors have been bought up, and we have the added fun of the glass steagal repeal allowing the investment side of these banks to play with your money, FDIC insured or not. The CU's exist because of their tax exempt status - and its the only way they can compete. The for profit banks would make unholy war if they had a chance to repeal that status for their only remaining competition. And CUs arent perfect....

Contrary to what I am sure most knee jerked to in my last post, IMO choice is what really needs to be championed & protected in our society. I do not think most are smart enough or open minded enough to see that we are not in a better position these days when it comes to choice. We continue to trade one set of very limited choices for another. We are slaves to our current economic system, and there are definitely many many more losers than winners, and some who are winning that do not necessarily deserve to be.

I am very curious to see what would happen to society if complete freedom (choice) were established. Like Moonbeam said, it would probably come down to individual morality. I just happen to think technology is going to push us much further in that direction than people of today realize, though it will likely happen long after all of us are dead.
 

Bowfinger

Lifer
Nov 17, 2002
15,776
392
126
I tend to agree re: #1. We have plenty of infrastructure jobs that would provide a tangible benefit to our society and it beats paying straight welfare.

Re: #5 - that would involve rescinding the interstate deregulation of the banking industry that occured in the last few decades, leading to the massive national banks we have now (after they M&A'd their way to these sizes). The problem with the former model is that the consumers didnt have enough choice - they were stuck with the banks chartered in their states. The problem now is... not enough choice. Most of the competitors have been bought up, and we have the added fun of the glass steagal repeal allowing the investment side of these banks to play with your money, FDIC insured or not. The CU's exist because of their tax exempt status - and its the only way they can compete. The for profit banks would make unholy war if they had a chance to repeal that status for their only remaining competition. And CUs arent perfect....

Contrary to what I am sure most knee jerked to in my last post, IMO choice is what really needs to be championed & protected in our society. I do not think most are smart enough or open minded enough to see that we are not in a better position these days when it comes to choice. We continue to trade one set of very limited choices for another. We are slaves to our current economic system, and there are definitely many many more losers than winners, and some who are winning that do not necessarily deserve to be.

I am very curious to see what would happen to society if complete freedom (choice) were established. Like Moonbeam said, it would probably come down to individual morality. I just happen to think technology is going to push us much further in that direction than people of today realize, though it will likely happen long after all of us are dead.
Agree, consumers are best served when there is a healthy competition among many choices. This is, of course, exactly why the bigger banks bought out their smaller brethren, to eliminate that competition that eroded their profit margins.

One possible solution we used to have in Iowa was a deposit cap: no one banking company was allowed to acquire more than 10% of total deposits in Iowa. This ensured there would be at least 10 active banks in Iowa, and of course there were many more than that. Wells Fargo ultimately killed it through years of relentless lobbying, costing Iowans choice ... and thousands of local jobs.
 
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werepossum

Elite Member
Jul 10, 2006
29,876
460
126
Agree, consumers are best served when there is a healthy competition among many choices. This is, of course, exactly why the bigger banks bought out their smaller brethren, to eliminate that competition that eroded their profit margins.

One possible solution we used to have in Iowa was a deposit cap: no one banking company was allowed to acquire more than 10% of total deposits in Iowa. This ensured there would be at least 10 active banks in Iowa, and of course there were many more than that. Wells Fargo ultimately killed it through years of relentless lobbying, costing Iowan's choice ... and thousands of local jobs.
This is how institutions become "too big to fail".
 

bradly1101

Diamond Member
May 5, 2013
4,690
293
126
www.bradlygsmith.org
Unemployment blows. The easiest and most direct solution is for the government to guarantee that everyone who wants to contribute productively to society is able to earn a decent living in the public sector.
Blows indeed.

To keep our modern, efficient society going there simply are not enough jobs for the population. Given population rates, this will only get worse.

Unemployment is but one of the challenges of overpopulation along with habitat/species loss, wars over resources, civil strife, poverty, disease, global warming, pollution, etc.
 

silverpig

Lifer
Jul 29, 2001
27,708
3
76
For those who think #4 is a bad idea: Norway has a HUGE sovereign wealth fund from all their oil royalties. I think this fund owns something like 1% of the entire stock market.
 

Zaap

Diamond Member
Jun 12, 2008
7,175
423
126
Well, to be fair, I don't think your average left-leaner advocates for the abolition of private property.
If you read the original screed, it's not really the abolition of private property- it's just the usual horesehit about the 1% and 'evil landlords' and "targeting rich people", which is the exact same horseshit peddled by every other lefty. So sure, they may not advocate for complete abolition of private property- just helping themselves (or their Dear Leader) to as much of other people's property as they want, so long as they've labeled those they want to steal from as undeserving.
 

Vic

Elite Member
Jun 12, 2001
47,261
7,031
126
If you read the original screed, it's not really the abolition of private property- it's just the usual horesehit about the 1% and 'evil landlords' and "targeting rich people", which is the exact same horseshit peddled by every other lefty. So sure, they may not advocate for complete abolition of private property- just helping themselves (or their Dear Leader) to as much of other people's property as they want, so long as they've labeled those they want to steal from as undeserving.
"You kids get off my lawn!"
 

TheAdvocate

Platinum Member
Mar 7, 2005
2,563
7
81
Blows indeed.

To keep our modern, efficient society going there simply are not enough jobs for the population. Given population rates, this will only get worse.
I think this is a much more immediate issue than people are willing to acknowledge. Look at Japan's lost generation. It's easily painted as an attitude rather than any systemic issue. I do not agree with the former characterization. The notion of full, continuous employment is probably an idealistic one at best, and unsustainable given technology/automation - unless you want to put everyone back to work doing manual labor (which means de-automating our economy). I think public works jobs should be sporadic but supported by govt/taxes (OMFG TAXES!!1). It shouldn't be a perpetual employment machine though, because that becomes its own kind of slavery. Identify what we realistically need done and try to soften economic cycles with these "maintenance" infrastructure programs. That requires an open minded, and unified populace and effective government - both of which are unicorns in the modern era.

But the long term issue is that full employment is probably not sustainable. I have absolutely zero issue with women joining the workforce in mass several decades ago, but from a practical standpoint, aside from WWII (when our military was a govt supported program), we have only been able to absorb that increase to the workforce for a very brief period of our history, and with great cyclity. The economies that have propelled us forward since then consisted of tech and housing bubbles - i.e. - unsustainable. Women joining the workforce isnt the cause of the problem (automation is), but it has exacerbated the situation. One possible course correction, that I do not have faith in the market to dictate, is a return to single income households (which would both cause and require material deflation - which no one would want). Of course it doesnt matter who the breadwinner in the house is - it's just a numbers game. If that could ever be achieved, it would be a temporary salve that would likely last a couple of generations. But it wouldn't solve the long term inevitability.

I do wish that people would start to think about these things on a more macro/long term level. I feel like most of the partisanship and lack of pragmatism is driven by myopic viewpoints and fear. You do not solve problems of this scale from such perspectives.
 
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boomerang

Lifer
Jun 19, 2000
18,897
638
126
lol. . . There is a bit of cognitive dissonance required to support the working class and illegal aliens isn't there?
A bit? Like children, the left wants what they want, they want it right now and give no thought to the consequences. Imagine the chaos if children had no adult supervision. Then look at our government. To top it off, right now an adult is unelectable.
 

bradly1101

Diamond Member
May 5, 2013
4,690
293
126
www.bradlygsmith.org
I think this is a much more immediate issue than people are willing to acknowledge. Look at Japan's lost generation. It's easily painted as an attitude rather than any systemic issue. I do not agree with the former characterization. The notion of full, continuous employment is probably an idealistic one at best, and unsustainable given technology/automation - unless you want to put everyone back to work doing manual labor (which means de-automating our economy). I think public works jobs should be sporadic but supported by govt/taxes (OMFG TAXES!!1). It shouldn't be a perpetual employment machine though, because that becomes its own kind of slavery. Identify what we realistically need done and try to soften economic cycles with these "maintenance" infrastructure programs. That requires an open minded, and unified populace and effective government - both of which are unicorns in the modern era.

But the long term issue is that full employment is probably not sustainable. I have absolutely zero issue with women joining the workforce in mass several decades ago, but from a practical standpoint, aside from WWII (when our military was a govt supported program), we have only been able to absorb that increase to the workforce for a very brief period of our history, and with great cyclity. The economies that have propelled us forward since then consisted of tech and housing bubbles - i.e. - unsustainable. Women joining the workforce isnt the cause of the problem (automation is), but it has exacerbated the situation. One possible course correction, that I do not have faith in the market to dictate, is a return to single income households (which would both cause and require material deflation - which no one would want). Of course it doesnt matter who the breadwinner in the house is - it's just a numbers game. If that could ever be achieved, it would be a temporary salve that would likely last a couple of generations. But it wouldn't solve the long term inevitability.

I do wish that people would start to think about these things on a more macro/long term level. I feel like most of the partisanship and lack of pragmatism is driven by myopic viewpoints and fear. You do not solve problems of this scale from such perspectives.
We see only growth as acceptable. More people=bigger workforce=more demand which should equal more jobs, but yes we've become too efficient and automated for our own good.

Growth is great and all, but we live on a limited planet, and I believe we have already reached a tipping point. Climate scientist never predicted warmer winters always, but they predicted larger swings.

I remember seeing a documentary where scientists were saying that ocean warming (brought on by global warming) could cause disruptions in the gulf stream, creating a new ice age for the north Atlantic region.

Who knows, but the proliferation of man has had so many devastating effects. Maybe that's why it's rarely spoken of; it requires a state of mind that recognizes that man's presence on this earth isn't divine or special. We simply figured out how to get the land to support more of us than it would have naturally by inventing the plow. It's been downhill ever since from the point of view of the planet and its other inhabitants.

Sadly and I believe with great peril we humans never seem to see that point of view; we own this place!
 

yllus

Elite Member & Lifer
Aug 20, 2000
20,583
430
126
For those who think #4 is a bad idea: Norway has a HUGE sovereign wealth fund from all their oil royalties. I think this fund owns something like 1% of the entire stock market.
I know of the existence of sovereign wealth funds, but not their specifics. I would imagine that there would be rules against a sovereign wealth fund investing within its own borders - having your own government also be your landlord / client who is trying to make money from you sounds like an enormous conflict of interest.

Definitely not against the idea in principle, though.
 

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