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Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 12:35 PM
Say Hey Kid

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"What I want is the people who buy into the claim that "wealth redistribution" will fix all the world's social problems to understand there is a difference between "needs" and "wants". And, that happiness can exist despite the fact that only ones wants are fulfilled."

Income disparity isn't "wealth distribution". It's an acknowledgement of a 40 year period in US history. Review the stats and data, it's scary when you consider the economic and historical consequences. Just because our profession gives us a comfortable living, it doesn't make us immune to the possibility of massive social change.
Post #1316839
Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 1:25 PM


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chrisn-585491 (6/15/2012)
"What I want is the people who buy into the claim that "wealth redistribution" will fix all the world's social problems to understand there is a difference between "needs" and "wants". And, that happiness can exist despite the fact that only ones wants are fulfilled."

Income disparity isn't "wealth distribution". It's an acknowledgement of a 40 year period in US history. Review the stats and data, it's scary when you consider the economic and historical consequences. Just because our profession gives us a comfortable living, it doesn't make us immune to the possibility of massive social change.


What exactly is scary? Income disparity has been around since the dawn of time. Unless you do away with the concept of personal property and income per se, it will always be there. The ratios highlighted with the recent studies completely obviate the huge improvements that have happend for several hundred years leading up to now. Short-term trend are not always indicative of the long-term.

The question isn't whether disparity exists, it's whether the ability to move along the income spectrum exists.

As the OECD study on the topic pointed out - redistribution mechanisms only serve as short-term band-aids. The only long-term solution is to try to make opportunities available to as many folks as possible.


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Your lack of planning does not constitute an emergency on my part...unless you're my manager...or a director and above...or a really loud-spoken end-user..All right - what was my emergency again?
Post #1316863
Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 1:37 PM


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Why wealth redistribution does not work.

http://socialismdoesntwork.com/why-socialism-doesnt-work/


"Technology is a weird thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ..."
Post #1316868
Posted Friday, June 15, 2012 2:37 PM
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Carl Grant (6/15/2012) I think that we dismiss the problem at the peril of our humanity. I need to question myself - am I using my power to empower or to exploit those on the outside looking in?


Carl, This is a most excellent question and one we should always seek an answer to. Further we should include in it the idea that we "first do no harm".


Not all gray hairs are Dinosaurs!
Post #1316895
Posted Monday, June 18, 2012 4:35 AM
Say Hey Kid

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What exactly is scary?


The last time the US income disparity was at this point was right before the Great Depression.

Imagine the economy as a database server. Right now the consumer economy of the US is I/O starved. If you are in a high paying career such as many of the folks that post here, it doesn't seem so bad does it? Imagine the US as Mexico.
Post #1317237
Posted Monday, June 18, 2012 7:31 AM
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chrisn-585491 (6/18/2012)
If you are in a high paying career such as many of the folks that post here, it doesn't seem so bad does it?
I wouldn't say that software development is a high-paying career.


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Post #1317317
Posted Monday, June 18, 2012 8:10 AM


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chrisn-585491 (6/18/2012)
What exactly is scary?


The last time the US income disparity was at this point was right before the Great Depression.

Imagine the economy as a database server. Right now the consumer economy of the US is I/O starved. If you are in a high paying career such as many of the folks that post here, it doesn't seem so bad does it? Imagine the US as Mexico.


I understand that - but if you take into account the previous boom/bust cycles, you see that there's an ebb and flow to the concentration of income, usually inversely proportional to the pace of growth of disruptive techonologies. The last "low" point was while the computer revolution occurred, where a LOT of new opportunities came to be. Before that was steam, and before that was heavy taylorization and the indsturial process.

Income disparity by itself doesn't explain or predict those things. There are a LOT of similarities you're not picking up on: very high debt to GDP ratios, explosive growth of the government, housing demand slumps, and crippling large legislations all started hitting hard during that time as well, just to name a few others.



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Your lack of planning does not constitute an emergency on my part...unless you're my manager...or a director and above...or a really loud-spoken end-user..All right - what was my emergency again?
Post #1317333
Posted Monday, June 18, 2012 8:39 AM


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chrisn-585491 (6/18/2012)

Imagine the economy as a database server. Right now the consumer economy of the US is I/O starved. ...

Which side is I/O starved: consumer demand or consumer supply?
Post #1317350
Posted Monday, June 18, 2012 8:59 AM
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Matt Miller (#4) (6/15/2012)
chrisn-585491 (6/15/2012)
"What I want is the people who buy into the claim that "wealth redistribution" will fix all the world's social problems to understand there is a difference between "needs" and "wants". And, that happiness can exist despite the fact that only ones wants are fulfilled."

Income disparity isn't "wealth distribution". It's an acknowledgement of a 40 year period in US history. Review the stats and data, it's scary when you consider the economic and historical consequences. Just because our profession gives us a comfortable living, it doesn't make us immune to the possibility of massive social change.


What exactly is scary? Income disparity has been around since the dawn of time.


We really don't want to go back there though, do we?


The question isn't whether disparity exists, it's whether the ability to move along the income spectrum exists.


Everybody on the lower income spectrum would like to move along the income spectrum toward the high end. The increasing disparity in wealth pushes them toward the lower end. Increasing disparity means that there is a change that trends against improving ones standard of living if we're on the low end of the wealth disparity.

The only long-term solution is to try to make opportunities available to as many folks as possible.


Less wealth on the low end means we have to work harder for basic necessities, and less wealth to invest in upward mobility and improving our economic status. Disparity in wealth affects mobility among the income spectrum by its very definition. Moving up in personal income requires an investment of resources, and less of these resources decrease upward mobility by definition. One of the few ways mobility can increase independently of income disparity is by a net across the board increase in resources for everybody. Are there other ways?
Post #1317370
Posted Monday, June 18, 2012 9:40 AM


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patrickmcginnis59 (6/18/2012)


The question isn't whether disparity exists, it's whether the ability to move along the income spectrum exists.


Everybody on the lower income spectrum would like to move along the income spectrum toward the high end. The increasing disparity in wealth pushes them toward the lower end. Increasing disparity means that there is a change that trends against improving ones standard of living if we're on the low end of the wealth disparity.

The only long-term solution is to try to make opportunities available to as many folks as possible.


Less wealth on the low end means we have to work harder for basic necessities, and less wealth to invest in upward mobility and improving our economic status. Disparity in wealth affects mobility among the income spectrum by its very definition. Moving up in personal income requires an investment of resources, and less of these resources decrease upward mobility by definition. One of the few ways mobility can increase independently of income disparity is by a net across the board increase in resources for everybody. Are there other ways?


There is nothing that creates an "across the board increase in resources", so that's a bit of a non-starter. Resources are limited - that's a fact of life. What do you propose that would magically improve everyone's station in life?

As to how to decrease disparity: introduce disruptive innovations. Find things that by their very nature jump outside of the routines, and allow new pathways to wealth. And if you think those originate only with large swaths of cash, you should look at the types of innovations that occurred in tech in the 70's, AND those that are happening right now in places like India.

Dont' forget - necessity is the mother of invention. More things get created in places where there is tension to improve (i.e. a scarcity of one kind or another, and an ability to be rewarded for risks you might take) than in places where every need is met but risk is forwned upon.


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Your lack of planning does not constitute an emergency on my part...unless you're my manager...or a director and above...or a really loud-spoken end-user..All right - what was my emergency again?
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