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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Wed November 01, 2017 7:24 pm 
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I'd argue that many of these workers don't see themselves as "left behind," but rather that their ideal scenario is a manufacturing job in which they can repeat the same task every day in exchange for a good wage and benefits with minimal headaches brought on by personal interaction. "I just want to punch in at 9, punch out at 5, grab a beer, and enjoy my leisure activities on the weekends" is still the driving force for lots of people.


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 Post subject: Re: The 45th POTUS - Donald J. Trump
PostPosted: Wed November 01, 2017 7:24 pm 
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4/5 wrote:
tragabigzanda wrote:
4/5 wrote:
tragabigzanda wrote:
BurtReynolds wrote:
tragabigzanda wrote:
BurtReynolds wrote:
Neither of those posts seem like ringing endorsements of globalization. In fact, the opposite.

I'm not endorsing it, just accepting it's the reality. What would Bannon have us do? Stop trading with other countries and making all of our widgets domestically? Or continue global trade, but push deals that create ever more deplorable working and environmental conditions wherever our widgets are made?

Given those two choices: the first one.

Oh, it'd be great if we could make it happen. But even if we could execute some modern New Deal situation that put every American to work in the manufacturing sector, how long would it take to implement? 20 years?

Why on earth would it be great to bring back manufacturing jobs to the U.S.? The fact that those jobs are gone is a sign of progress. As a nation we are too skilled and too productive for those jobs at this point and that's a really good thing.

As a small business owner pursuing all manner of funding for development of a light manufacturing line in a rural area, I wholeheartedly disagree. There are people less than a hundred feet from where I'm sitting right now who would love a manufacturing job.

And if I'm not misunderstanding you, this would seem to suggest that you have a workforce sitting there waiting to get a manufacturing job from you. Presumably, you'll be manufacturing something that you can afford to pay American workers to make and still be competitive. This sounds like a good thing for both sides.

yeah


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Wed November 01, 2017 9:37 pm 
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tragabigzanda wrote:
I'd argue that many of these workers don't see themselves as "left behind," but rather that their ideal scenario is a manufacturing job in which they can repeat the same task every day in exchange for a good wage and benefits with minimal headaches brought on by personal interaction. "I just want to punch in at 9, punch out at 5, grab a beer, and enjoy my leisure activities on the weekends" is still the driving force for lots of people.

I don’t doubt that you’re right about that. As a nation, though, we just aren’t competitive in those sorts of low skill jobs/industries. Those jobs are gone and are never coming back. I truly believe that’s a sign of progress and growth and on net we are much better off without those jobs (and with the ones that are replacing those lost). However, that is not to say there aren’t people who are significantly worse off due to these changes. There absolutely are and that’s a shame, but I think it’s backward-looking to romantically pine for the days when low skill manufacturing jobs existed on a much larger scale. (I’m not saying that’s what you’re doing, but certainly some people who fear technological innovation and foreign competition do just that.) Things are improving, we are becoming ever more productive, it takes us fewer man hours to produce better and better goods, and more people have access to this astounding variety of goods than ever before. But the process is messy, and the rate of change right now is so fast that it certainly does make some people at least temporarily worse off. There are structural issues right now in which there is a mismatch between the skills some people and have and the skills demanded by employers, and as long as that’s true there’s going to be a temptation to long for the good ol’ days, but like I said I don’t think that’s the solution.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Wed November 01, 2017 9:49 pm 
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4/5 wrote:
tragabigzanda wrote:
I'd argue that many of these workers don't see themselves as "left behind," but rather that their ideal scenario is a manufacturing job in which they can repeat the same task every day in exchange for a good wage and benefits with minimal headaches brought on by personal interaction. "I just want to punch in at 9, punch out at 5, grab a beer, and enjoy my leisure activities on the weekends" is still the driving force for lots of people.

I don’t doubt that you’re right about that. As a nation, though, we just aren’t competitive in those sorts of low skill jobs/industries.

Absolutely right, but I would counter that it has more to do with the lax regulations and lower living wages in other countries. We'll never be competitive because our labor force wants $15US/hr, a guaranteed 40-hour work week, and they don't want to get cancer as a by-product of their employment. Which is why Bannon's world view is so sickening to me. If we're able to command production all around the globe, shouldn't we be acting as stewards of those nations where regulations and working conditions are bad for the workers? Especially since, you know, water and air don't exactly adhere to international boundaries.


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Thu November 02, 2017 12:32 am 
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the good part is, Bannon's world view is unimplementable. so there's no need to worry about it


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Thu November 02, 2017 12:32 am 
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now gimme those lead-based chinese fishsticks mmmhmmm


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Thu November 02, 2017 12:44 pm 
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tragabigzanda wrote:
Absolutely right, but I would counter that it has more to do with the lax regulations and lower living wages in other countries.

I find it difficult to criticize poor nations full of citizens that are desperate for jobs for being too lax on regulation. But yes, some nations provide regulatory conditions that are more favorable for manufacturing than the United States currently does.

tragabigzanda wrote:
We'll never be competitive because our labor force wants $15US/hr, a guaranteed 40-hour work week, and they don't want to get cancer as a by-product of their employment.

This certainly isn't the fault of companies or workers in foreign countries. This is all about the preferences of American workers who have gotten used to better working conditions and wages that the market has provided over the past century. While I agree with you that the American worker has higher expectations of what a job should provide them with (and would point to shorter work weeks, more leisure time, and safer workplace conditions as evidence that we are doing better overall), I disagree with the assertion that it means "we'll never be competitive."

When it comes to deciding who to hire wages are only part of the story and I think it's easy to forget the other part of it. Take two workers for example, workers X and Y. X is paid $20/hour and Y is paid $4/hour. Can X ever be competitive with Y despite the much higher wage? We need to consider how productive each worker is. Let's say that they're each producing widgets and that widgets sell for $0.50 each. If X produces 60 widgets/hour and Y produces 10 widgets/hour, who should the company hire, all other things equal? X's wage is 5x that of Y, but his productivity is 6x Y's. X creates $30 of value per hour while Y creates $5 of value per hour. When we compare their productive output with their wage, we see that Y generates a 25% return for the company whereas X generates a 50% return, so despite paying a much higher wage the company is clearly better off hiring X.

Productivity matters. Since Americans demand higher wages we simply have to be more productive than the alternatives. In many industries we are, especially higher skilled ones. In low skill industries we often still are, however we're not so much more productive that companies should hire Americans. They're clearly better off hiring cheaper labor in those instances if neither is going to be particularly more productive. This is causing a structural shift in our labor market that is clearly causing some tough times for those American workers whose skills are no longer in demand, but again I argue that the benefits we (Americans and humans in general) receive from these changes outweigh the costs that these workers bear.

tragabigzanda wrote:
Which is why Bannon's world view is so sickening to me. If we're able to command production all around the globe, shouldn't we be acting as stewards of those nations where regulations and working conditions are bad for the workers? Especially since, you know, water and air don't exactly adhere to international boundaries.

The climate argument is the one that I find more compelling than the others, however even then I have to ask what gives us the right to "act as stewards of those nations"? You say that regulations and working conditions are bad for the workers, but is that really true? From the American perspective, sure. But we have to look at this from the prospective of people in those countries. The regulations (or lack thereof) may have been critical in leading the entry of that industry into the country in the first place, being a reason the job even exists. Now, working conditions are clearly not very good and sometimes down right deplorable. Americans would consider such conditions a non-starter. However, if we asked the workers (and there have been studies that have done exactly this) what they prefer the company do: spend money improving working conditions or spend money on wages, they typically prefer the higher wages. Better working conditions can be seen as a luxury good. It's nice and once you earn a certain basic wage many workers preferences shift and they want safer conditions. But we have to consider what the next best option is for those workers. The fact that they are willing to work in those conditions and at those wages suggests that it is in fact their best option. I find it very, very problematic for foreigners who are comfortable financially (us) to make decisions for people who are literally just trying to survive. The good news is that the experience of industrialization and post-industrialization shows us that conditions do improve, and in fact they are improving at an increasing rate as nations are industrializing faster and faster than ever before. The populations of these countries that in the short term are homes of terrible environmental conditions, awful working conditions, low wages, poor education. But each of those things quickly improves as they industrialize.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Fri November 03, 2017 4:48 pm 
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Trump's nominee to replace Janet Yellen. There's probably not much to see here, he has been an ally of Yellen so it wouldn't appear that Fed policy will be dramatically effected by the change.
Image

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Fri November 03, 2017 11:14 pm 
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yes kudos to him for not fucking this up


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Sat November 04, 2017 3:54 am 
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tragabigzanda wrote:
I'd argue that many of these workers don't see themselves as "left behind," but rather that their ideal scenario is a manufacturing job in which they can repeat the same task every day in exchange for a good wage and benefits with minimal headaches brought on by personal interaction. "I just want to punch in at 9, punch out at 5, grab a beer, and enjoy my leisure activities on the weekends" is still the driving force for lots of people.

me and my machine for the rest of the morning...rest of the afternoon...gone...


When innovation led to tech and automation capable of producing more with less labor....instead of that money saved being shared and spread among the workers of the company, CEO's and managers took exponential pay raises, the workers fired.


Land owners and multi national companies have more influence in gov't policy (free to the extent we can pay for it), so it goes back to what it always goes back too....

Its arbitrary...but how its always been.

A company in Spain, Mondragol, should be the future model for businesses. It might be the only way to save capitalism. That's always the biggest knock on socialism or communism, that they require massive gov't infrastructure and spending to maintain, thus stifling freedom. The great depression, and the recent trillion dollar payouts in the US have show that flaw exists with capitalism as well, perhaps to a much larger extent.


IS profit the end game? Jobs?> the community?

Motivation behind labor is the soul of a community/state/economic system, and has a very significant impact on gov't policy.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Sun December 03, 2017 12:44 pm 
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https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/30/even-a-1-million-retirement-nest-egg-isnt-enough-anymore.html

Quote:
Even a $1 million retirement nest egg isn't enough anymore

With more retirees responsible for their own financial security, even a $1 million nest egg isn't nearly enough.
Considering the looming retirement savings shortfall, experts say there are only two ways out: Earn more or spend less.





A cool $1 million has long been considered the gold standard of retirement savings. These days, it's only a fraction of what you will really need.

For instance, a 67-year-old baby boomer retiring now with $1 million in the bank will generate $40,000 a year to live on adjusted for inflation and assuming a sustainable withdrawal rate of 4 percent, said Mark Avallone, president of Potomac Wealth Advisors and author of "Countdown to Financial Freedom."

It's worse for a 42-year-old Gen Xer, whose $1 million at retirement will only generate an inflation-adjusted $19,000 a year when all is said and done. And a 32-year-old millennial planning to retire at 67 with $1 million would live below the poverty line.


That's what Avallone, a certified financial planner, calls "million-dollar poverty."

For most Americans, there's been a serious lack of proper investment income and planning, Avallone said. That, coupled with inflation, a looming pension crisis and longer life expectancy, is "a toxic formula for successful retirement," he said — one that will result in a dramatic drop-off in lifestyle for retirees.

"Today's generation of working people grew up in an era where their parents went to a mailbox, and a check appeared. But pensions are almost extinct," Avallone said. "People have to self-fund their retirement, and the enormity of that challenge is underestimated."

WalletHub conducted a study this year to determine how long a nest egg of $1 million would really last. The personal finance site compared average expenses for people age 65 and older, including groceries, housing, utilities, transportation and health care.

Naturally, depending on where in the U.S. you live, the longevity of a $1 million nest egg varies. Those dollars stretched furthest in states like Mississippi, Arkansas and Tennessee, where retirees could live a life of leisure for at least a quarter of a century.

However, in Hawaii, where residents pay roughly 30 percent more for household items across the board, that same amount will only get you just shy of a dozen years — largely because of that higher cost of living and pricey real estate.

Considering that many families spend more than 100 percent of their income after taxes on monthly expenses alone, there are only two ways to overcome million-dollar poverty, Avallone said: Earn more or spend less.

For those nearing retirement, Avallone suggests getting a side gig, or "hobby job," and then saving 100 percent of that income.

"The key is to automatically deposit that money in a savings or investment account," he said.

Alternatively, take a hard look at your expenses and differentiate between what's necessary and what's discretionary. Then identify expenditures that can be cut back — which involves making some very tough decisions.

"Some are small, like lunches, but they add up," he said. "Others are big, like private school."



Key point: Stop being poor.


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Sun December 03, 2017 1:02 pm 
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I'm trying.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Sun December 03, 2017 7:37 pm 
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Well that's fucking depressing.


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Sun December 03, 2017 11:48 pm 
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Why would a 67 year old want all their money in a bank instead of having any of it invested?

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Sun December 03, 2017 11:56 pm 
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Retirement was always a scam, dudes.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Mon December 04, 2017 12:44 pm 
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4/5 wrote:
Why would a 67 year old want all their money in a bank instead of having any of it invested?


I don't think that literally meant "in a checking account", but I suspect $40k/yr draw down is about right given today's tax rates. Another article I found put it this way:

Quote:
" For years, many retirees followed the 4% rule -- that is, they withdrew 4% of their savings the first year retirement and then increased that initial dollar draw by the inflation rate to maintain spending power. So assuming annual inflation of, say, 2%, someone with a $1 million nest egg following that rule of thumb would draw $40,000 ($3,333 a month) the first year of retirement, and then increase that amount by 2% to $40,800 ($3,400 a month) the second year of retirement, $41,600 ($3,470 a month) the third, and so on. Historically, if you followed this regimen, you had a high likelihood -- roughly a 90% chance -- that your money would last at least 30 years, long enough to carry most people through retirement.

But with many market watchers forecasting lower investment returns in the years ahead, a number of retirement-income experts have suggested that retirees who want a 90% or so probability of their savings lasting 30 or more years ought to scale back to an initial withdrawal rate of 3% or so. That would reduce the initial withdrawal on a $1 million nest egg by 25% from $40,000 a year to $30,000, or from $3,333 a month to $2,500. That's not to say you can't withdraw more -- 4%, 4.5%, 5% or whatever. It's just that as your withdrawal rate rises, the chances of your money lasting 30 or more years can decline sharply. "


Interesting times are ahead of us when $1m in total savings should just about cover food and shelter. for one person.


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Tue December 05, 2017 2:47 am 
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Bi_3 wrote:

Interesting times are ahead of us when $1m in total savings should just about cover food and shelter. for one person.

I know a good hedge...

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Wed December 06, 2017 3:15 am 
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I wonder how much this conversation will change once we become more accepting of euthanasia.

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