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Old Dec 6, 2012, 12:59 AM   #101
thekev
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Originally Posted by zync View Post

Then I'll have to pay SunBiz a few hundred dollars a year just to do nothing. Then I'll actually have to work. Oh and log meeting minutes with myself. And my accountant will probably want me to use quickbooks. So I'll have to get that crap software or pay more for them to use my invoices. I'll have to pay unemployment tax for my employees (me) even though I won't be able to take unemployment. So before I've made any money whatsoever, I need to make probably $4-5K just to dig out of the hole. So maybe I work one month or two without making anything or perhaps I get someone to buy a large project for that amount. Either way, that's weeks of working for the right to work at a slightly lower percentage of taxes. Then I actually have to pay probably somewhere around 20-30% in taxes, so let's take off another 3 months. So by June I might make some money. Do you see how ridiculous this is?

And all people want to do is make that already daunting amount of crap even more difficult because they forget that while X regulation may hurt WalMart it's also going to hurt all of the one and two man operations out there too.
Out of curiosity, what prevented you from going the LLC route if you're just a one man shop? That way you wouldn't be required to conduct meetings with yourself.
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 01:20 AM   #102
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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
Thank heavens for that?? So you're okay with millions of people not being able to afford a to buy a loaf of bread or a gallon of milk? **** those people right? Just let them live in the street and take scraps out of the trash.
Where do you come up with this stuff?

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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
You going to provide us with an example of one? (with citation of course) It has to be a recent example too because with all of the recent technology and globalization anything more than a few decades ago doesn't apply.
So we have to consider globalization in our arguments, but you don't? Globalization and an instant communication network makes unions even less relevant.



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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
Not necessarily. Costs of goods don't have to go up. The profit margin could shrink. If you're running a company and 50% of costs are operating & manufacturing expenses, 25% is wages, and 25% is profit, you could raise wages to 30% and still make a 20% profit without raising costs.

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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
I'm glad you think you know how I think but you don't.
Oh, I do. For one thing I used to be pretty Liberal. For another, it's what you showed in your responses.


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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
Which means minimum wage should be going up too so that people can still afford to buy the goods that they need. 15 years ago gas was under $1.00 a gallon and minimum wage was $5.75, so you could get a gallon of gas for approximately 10 minutes work. Now, gas is $3.50 a gallon and minimum wage is $8.00, so one gallon of gas is approximately 26 minutes of work. That's a huge problem. You wonder why so many more people are on welfare and food stamps now?
No, I completely understand why so many are in that situation. It's because people believe that stimulus money, and unions, and all sorts of obviously economic bunk work instead of just providing a stable environment for business to thrive and hire employees.

You're proving my point. If minimum wage should go up, then inflation will go up and things will cost more. Even ignoring the FACT that people would be without jobs, they could still be no better off by increasing minimum wage.

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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
Why should my and your tax dollars pay to subsidize a companies workforce so they can maintain their profit? I have no problem with any company making a fair profit, but it's not fair to anybody if Walmart is making $110 billion dollars a year in pure profit while the taxpayers are paying for welfare and food stamps to their employees because they refuse to pay them a living wage and won't let them work a minute more than 40 hours because they would have to pay overtime and give them benefits.
Here's something we can agree on. Tax dollars shouldn't go to ANY subsidies. Not green energy, not corn, not stupid Walmart. And they shouldn't subsidize people to sit on their asses either. Stossel did a report on his show showing people in a welfare line. Within that same block in NYC he found 50 jobs that those people said didn't exist. One of the smart people applied for one and got it. And all of those business owners said that they had plenty of jobs and couldn't find people to fill them. And I've seen stories like that all over. There's a telemarketing company here (even though I hate telemarketing it's a good example). They had 1500 jobs, and said that it was hard for them to get anyone. They had billboards up and everything. Yet we still had panhandlers in the street all over. They had to pass an ordinance to stop it. And one of the panhandlers by my friends' house had an iPod. Many had brand new Nikes and some had nice watches too.

Sidenote, my mom works at Walmart. Her hours are cut under 40. She's not on welfare.

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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
And many times they do not. Plenty of my friends worked in stores like Target in college the past few years, and the majority of them made in the $9.00 an hour range.
Take note of your words. Your friends were there in COLLEGE. They were unskilled labor with perhaps some experience. And still, that's above minimum wage.


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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
God forbid teachers (one of the most important jobs in our society!) get paid a fair wage. Base salary for a teacher here in my town is $33,000 a year which is not very much at all for someone who needs to continue taking higher education to remain certified in their field.

Massive budget cuts and "No Child Left Behind" are what has screwed up our public education system in the past decade, not the teachers.
You're just hitting them right to me aren't you? First of all my wife is a teacher. Here, salary is $40K for a brand-new teacher even if they're working to get their certificate. Then, you must consider that my wife gets 2+ months off. So it's more like $48K a year for a brand new teacher that decides to work those extra two months.

As for the rest, yes "No Child Left Behind" did screw things up, but you know what else does? UNIONS. The people who run them are inept. There are many teachers that NEED to go. But it costs hundreds of thousands to just bring up a case to fire a teacher. Most other industries don't have that kinds of job security. There was a teacher in, I think, LA last year that told a student who had attempted suicide that they even failed at that and that next time they should cut deeper. He was suspended for a bit and now I believe he still teaches. If not he's sitting somewhere watching TV and getting paid. Yes, that actually happens to the really inept teachers. They make them report somewhere and do nothing.

Anyway, there's a pool that teachers are placed into when they're let go if they have a 3 year tenure. My wife had to switch schools twice and wait for pool teachers to be picked first (until they locked her in by tying a sport to her position). She started her first year about a day before school started. It was her first time teaching. She had uno día to prepare. Why? Because teachers who would get worse peer reviews than her had to be picked first. She's now one of the top teachers in her subject area in the county, as reviewed by her peers and supervisors. She's rated higher than most veteran teachers. And she was rated higher than most even in her first year. But instead of getting some new life in there, we have a stupid pool system. Those teachers are passed around because no one wants them.

Here's another example. There was a teacher who left for the military so her job was secured. Well, she still hasn't come back but she took my wife's coworker's job because they had to accept her. She was on leave to get hired and then had to return to base. She left nothing for subs, tried to get the principal to do her sub plans for her, and didn't report back until just before she could return.

Anywhere else, that person would have been fired as soon as the could be. I understand that military jobs have to be saved until they return.

So yes. It often IS the teacher's fault. Just because they're teachers doesn't mean they're good at it. There are still plenty of crappy ones just like in any other demographic. The only difference is that they can't be fired.

That is what ruins education. That's why charter schools often perform well. Those teachers can usually be fired.


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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
It clearly isn't and you're blind if you try to suggest otherwise. The number of people on welfare and food stamps keeps increasing. The costs of goods keep on increasing. The only thing that remains constant is minimum wage. From there, it's pretty simple arithmetic. Your expenses keep growing while your income stays stagnant and then you can't afford the goods you need to sustain your life.
Please explain to me, how it is possible that in an economy in which it is already too difficult to keep workers paid, forcing people to pay workers more is going to LOWER unemployment. I'll wait.

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Originally Posted by thekev View Post
Out of curiosity, what prevented you from going the LLC route if you're just a one man shop? That way you wouldn't be required to conduct meetings with yourself.
Depending upon the setup, as I understand, even an LLC may be required to do that. One of my friends has an LLC and the other an S-Corp and both are required to do so. Perhaps the one has an LLC filing subchapter S? I'm not sure. I'm still trying to figure that out.

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Originally Posted by CorvusCamenarum View Post
Why are you using gross and not net? (For 2011, net margin was slightly less than 4%).
I was wondering about that but it was taking too long to find. So that means the rest went to employees and costs.

----------

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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
And ever since civilization began, up until the 20th century, nobody had computers, the internet, instant global communication, airplanes to travel halfway around the world in less than a day, etc. That's why you can't make comparisons of our economic situations now to "back since civilization began", because there are too many external factors that are so unbelievably different than they used to be.

Still waiting for that example of a modern free-market society that actually works and doesn't have millions of people living in poverty.
I already gave you the best one—HONG F'N KONG.

Also, props for taking my reasons for why free markets would work even better in this day an age, while trying to use them against nsayer for examples of free markets. By the way, why don't you show us one economy that does work without a free market? Isn't it rather curious that the countries without free markets are impoverished? Isn't it also curious that countries with the freest markets thrive?

Hint* Index of Economic Freedom Watch the video.

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Originally Posted by zioxide View Post
Good luck with your libertarian free-market utopia. There's one problem why it will never work, and it's the same reason that communism doesn't work: GREED.
As I said before, greed puts food on tables.
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 07:29 AM   #103
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Originally Posted by zync View Post
Everyone is not paid the same wage. It's generally commensurate with experience. The $8 an hour guy is already there. Where do you get a lower paying job will require more skill? I never said that.
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Originally Posted by zync
Raising the minimum wage to any amount will make employers bleed jobs and raise prices. This causes inflation. Then those whose jobs were cut will be unable to find a job because all of the jobs at the next lowest pay scale will require those workers to be more skilled than they are. This will increase unemployment. With a large supply of labor, demand for labor will be lower.
You pretty much said exactly that. Or, as I said, is your wording just confusing?

Quote:
Except you're forgetting about one thing—inflation. By the time that guy goes to spend that extra $250, he'll have spent it on the groceries that would be about double.
So, raising minimum wage from $7.25 to $10 would cause the price of groceries to double? Is that much of the grocery margin eaten up by low-priced labor.

Quote:
And the same is said of liberals in most circles I go between. Just because you misunderstand it doesn't mean it's bad. Do you know why many people say greed does more in this country than charity ever could? It's because greed creates jobs and puts food on tables. Charity can only give food when it's been given food to give.
I don't call a company who provides good-paying jobs and provides good product greedy. I call companies who rake in billions but still pay employees crap yet reward executives with tens of millions in salary and bonuses, greedy. If that's a good thing to you, then we're definitely on a different page.

Quote:
But that raises such a can of worms because there are sooo many hoops that you have to jump through. First of all, even just for me I'll have to have someone else do my taxes. That's $1K-2K that I shouldn't have to pay (because the tax code is extremely broken). I'll need a lawyer to incorporate, or hopefully have a friend help me with his documents. There's a package that you have to buy along with that so that you have the proper seals or whatever. Then I'll have to pay SunBiz a few hundred dollars a year just to do nothing. Then I'll actually have to work. Oh and log meeting minutes with myself. And my accountant will probably want me to use quickbooks. So I'll have to get that crap software or pay more for them to use my invoices. I'll have to pay unemployment tax for my employees (me) even though I won't be able to take unemployment. So before I've made any money whatsoever, I need to make probably $4-5K just to dig out of the hole. Do you see how ridiculous this is?
The things in bold are not government regulations making things hard on business. Those are decisions. A lawyer is not required by the government. Quickbooks is not required by the government. Having someone else do your taxes is not required by the government. And unless things are really complex, it shouldn't cost $1000-$2000 to do taxes, unless once you incorporate yourself it's that much of a difference. Between my wife and myself last year we had nine W2s and six 1099s from our self-employment work, in addition to half a dozen investment accounts. HR Block charged me a few hundred dollars. And last year was the first year I had someone do my taxes for me, and it was the smallest number of W2s and 1099s in recent years.

Reading the above, it sounds to me like you think you should just be able to start your business with absolutely no governmental involvement or requirements.

Quote:
And all people want to do is make that already daunting amount of crap even more difficult because they forget that while X regulation may hurt WalMart it's also going to hurt all of the one and two man operations out there too.
That list was daunting? That's less work than I've had to go through to try to refinance my mortgage with the very same company I already have my mortgage with!

Quote:
I just mentioned a bunch in my post. I don't know why people think that regulations are only environmental. Any law that requires you to do something is a regulation. I can't start a business without having certain documents,
OH NO!!!! You need documents to start a business!??! Those communists!

Quote:
paying an annual fee to an entity called SunBiz to basically do nothing
Sounds like insurance companies.

Quote:
paying unemployment tax for my employees (which will only be me for a while) even though I won't be eligible to receive it, keeping track of meeting minutes with myself because there will be no other shareholders, etc.
I will agree that these two might be a little stupid. Although, will you really have meetings with yourself?

Quote:
There's also paying payroll taxes, employee insurance (even if they're willing to do without or provide it themselves). Then you have to 1099 subcontractors that you pay over $600 in a year, etc. etc.
How is any of the above out of line?

-----

Anyway, the original discussion (well, that it morphed into from the iMac thing) was about low-paying jobs in the corporate world. So can you answer the following questions:

Part 1: Do you support companies paying non-living wages so that their employees must be supported by welfare?

Part 2: If you believe that welfare shouldn't exist because everyone should be responsible for themselves, what do you propose should happen with the people in those jobs who can only make $12,000 a year?

And for giggles, Part 3: Do you agree with companies which raise executive pay while asking workers to take pay cuts because of financial difficulties?
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 07:51 AM   #104
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Originally Posted by zync View Post
Stossel did a report on his show showing people in a welfare line. Within that same block in NYC he found 50 jobs that those people said didn't exist. One of the smart people applied for one and got it. And all of those business owners said that they had plenty of jobs and couldn't find people to fill them. And I've seen stories like that all over. There's a telemarketing company here (even though I hate telemarketing it's a good example). They had 1500 jobs, and said that it was hard for them to get anyone. They had billboards up and everything.
This is an interesting subject matter, and something that I have been thinking about quite a bit recently. I keep hearing "We have jobs, but we can't find anyone to take them!" Even basic entry-level jobs. So why can't they find people to take them?

Enter our current situation. My wife stopped working when we had our baby because what we did for work was not possible once a baby came around. Now, she's ready to go back to work. She has applied to no fewer than ten jobs, with everything from jobs based on her last career to entry-level customer service jobs. Not a single one has panned out.

But, the more interesting part was the job applications for some of these. Entry-level call-center type jobs requiring a ridiculous amount of backup and qualifications. Seriously? Five years in customer support and a college degree to be a call-center employee? That application alone took over an hour to fill out because of the amount of backup she needed to provide, like 10 years of employment history with no gaps, which is kind of hard as a freelancer. And then the application was rejected because of an employment gap.

Is it at all possible that there are plenty of people for the jobs, but the requirements made are just too daunting? I can do almost anything you put in front of me, because I'm a pretty smart guy, but on paper, I'm qualified for very little.

So maybe, just maybe, some of these companies are making it so difficult that they can't find people because their expectations are too high. But no, that can't be, because business operators are magically inclined to be perfect at everything and know exactly what is the right thing.


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Originally Posted by zync View Post
By the way, why don't you show us one economy that does work without a free market?
Germany? Pretty heavily regulated to my knowledge. And full of unions.
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 08:05 AM   #105
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Germany? Pretty heavily regulated to my knowledge. And full of unions.
Having regulation and unions is not a determination of whether there is a free market or not.

Can you start a business in Germany, change jobs, and buy things?

Then you've got a free market.
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 08:19 AM   #106
zync
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Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
You pretty much said exactly that. Or, as I said, is your wording just confusing?
I said NEXT lowest pay scale. All of the jobs at the next lowest pay scale will require those workers to be more skilled than they are. i.e. if you're cut at $7.50 because you have $7.50 worth of skill you won't get a job because you won't have the skill for the next lowest pay scale. Perhaps I could have said new lowest pay scale.


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Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
So, raising minimum wage from $7.25 to $10 would cause the price of groceries to double? Is that much of the grocery margin eaten up by low-priced labor.
It's not literal. The price will be equal to the raise in minimum wage.


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Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
I don't call a company who provides good-paying jobs and provides good product greedy. I call companies who rake in billions but still pay employees crap yet reward executives with tens of millions in salary and bonuses, greedy. If that's a good thing to you, then we're definitely on a different page.
Greed is greed. But you have to understand that while working is generally mandatory for survival, where you work is completely voluntary.


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Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
The things in bold are not government regulations making things hard on business. Those are decisions. A lawyer is not required by the government. Quickbooks is not required by the government. Having someone else do your taxes is not required by the government. And unless things are really complex, it shouldn't cost $1000-$2000 to do taxes, unless once you incorporate yourself it's that much of a difference. Between my wife and myself last year we had nine W2s and six 1099s from our self-employment work, in addition to half a dozen investment accounts. HR Block charged me a few hundred dollars. And last year was the first year I had someone do my taxes for me, and it was the smallest number of W2s and 1099s in recent years.
Yes, they are decisions. Why? Because right now I must pay 35% of my income to the government. I'd rather not do that. Additionally, there are protections that I don't currently enjoy. In order to keep all of those protections and not be screwed if an when the time comes, those documents must be impeccable.

And forgive me here, but last year I had a W2 for my wife, about 60 invoices, and about 12 invoices that I had to follow up on for a year to get paid. That's a little more substantial than 9 documents where tax is paid for you (that's a lot of W2s though), and six you have to figure out on your own. Then there's my littany of deductions.

SunBiz is a requirement. Filing the documents is a requirement. The others, while optional, protect me from being sued to hell, so I kind of view them as a requirement.

You shouldn't run a business without a good accountant. Those run about $180/hr so $1800 is a 10 hour bill.

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Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
Reading the above, it sounds to me like you think you should just be able to start your business with absolutely no governmental involvement or requirements.
I do. About all that should be necessary is registering the name and the payment for a government employee to handle that.

The government has (or should I say used to only have) three roles. 1. Provide for the common defense. 2. Provide stability for a free market economy. 3. Provide a system of courts to address problems.

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Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
That list was daunting? That's less work than I've had to go through to try to refinance my mortgage with the very same company I already have my mortgage with!
That list was incomplete.

You must have a crappy company. I didn't even have to provide any new documents to refinance mine.

I've got thousands of receipts I've logged, miles, expenses, etc. Then there will be payroll, distributions, 1099s, meetings, and a bunch of other general BS that I, and anyone else in this country, must do to be in business. The problem isn't so much that you have to do certain things. The problem is with the amount. And once you compare all of these things you begin to see how much it costs just to make an honest buck in this country.


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Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
OH NO!!!! You need documents to start a business!??! Those communists!
I didn't say that I shouldn't need any. I just said it's a regulation. And it's one that does impede me.


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Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
Sounds like insurance companies.
Here's something we agree on, but probably not why. I hate insurance companies because they drive up the cost of services. That's why actual medical expenses are so astronomical. But that's for another topic.


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Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
I will agree that these two might be a little stupid. Although, will you really have meetings with yourself?
They are stupid. And while I won't technically do anything to have a meeting, I still need the document. So I'll either have to figure it out or pay someone to do it. Either way it costs me money.

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Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
How is any of the above out of line?
Payroll taxes could be computed at the time the employee files their taxes. I also object to having to pay the government in installments (which is another thing I'll need an accountant for) because then they profit off of money I could have invested. It's another issue of trusting the people.

Doing 1099s is annoying because you have to report them. Otherwise the government doesn't get it's money. But the individual is supposed to take care of that. If people are going to cheat it, they will.

And insurance should not be a requirement. Many companies provide benefits as a way of keeping and attracting workers. The ones that don't will be less successful.


Quote:
Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
-----

Anyway, the original discussion (well, that it morphed into from the iMac thing) was about low-paying jobs in the corporate world. So can you answer the following questions:

Part 1: Do you support companies paying non-living wages so that their employees must be supported by welfare?

Part 2: If you believe that welfare shouldn't exist because everyone should be responsible for themselves, what do you propose should happen with the people in those jobs who can only make $12,000 a year?

And for giggles, Part 3: Do you agree with companies which raise executive pay while asking workers to take pay cuts because of financial difficulties?
1. I support companies paying whatever they want to. Whom you decide to work for is a voluntary choice. It allows you to vote with your employment because labor is a market just like any other.

2. I don't believe that welfare shouldn't exist. If I'm forced to pay it, I should be able to get it back. I don't really believe that we should have to pay for it. If we knew there was no safety net, we'd be more careful about saving. Additionally, private entities are equipped to help people in need. The government is the most inefficient at it. If I could pay a charity with those taxes instead, I'd be glad to do it.

3. No. But I don't work for those companies and if I did, I'd start looking for a new job. However, I support their right to do so. Just because I don't agree with something doesn't mean I don't support their right to do so. That's kind of what freedom is based on.

I don't support abortion, I would never want one, but I support the ability to make the decision.

People have it in their minds that anything they don't agree with shouldn't be allowed and that's not right.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by eric/ View Post
Having regulation and unions is not a determination of whether there is a free market or not.

Can you start a business in Germany, change jobs, and buy things?

Then you've got a free market.
Not exactly true. If the government regulates the market it is not free. It's just a matter of degree.

Unions can, however exist in a truly free market. However, in this day, unions often lobby for government regulation that is pro-union. That's more of a grey area.

As for Germany itself? I'd imagine that it's comparable to us. They're 26 on the index of econmic freedom. We're at 10. They're still listed in the "mostly free" section with us.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by samiwas View Post
This is an interesting subject matter, and something that I have been thinking about quite a bit recently. I keep hearing "We have jobs, but we can't find anyone to take them!" Even basic entry-level jobs. So why can't they find people to take them?

Enter our current situation. My wife stopped working when we had our baby because what we did for work was not possible once a baby came around. Now, she's ready to go back to work. She has applied to no fewer than ten jobs, with everything from jobs based on her last career to entry-level customer service jobs. Not a single one has panned out.

But, the more interesting part was the job applications for some of these. Entry-level call-center type jobs requiring a ridiculous amount of backup and qualifications. Seriously? Five years in customer support and a college degree to be a call-center employee? That application alone took over an hour to fill out because of the amount of backup she needed to provide, like 10 years of employment history with no gaps, which is kind of hard as a freelancer. And then the application was rejected because of an employment gap.

Is it at all possible that there are plenty of people for the jobs, but the requirements made are just too daunting? I can do almost anything you put in front of me, because I'm a pretty smart guy, but on paper, I'm qualified for very little.

So maybe, just maybe, some of these companies are making it so difficult that they can't find people because their expectations are too high. But no, that can't be, because business operators are magically inclined to be perfect at everything and know exactly what is the right thing.
I would imagine that is because the labor pool is now so large that they can pick and choose.
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 08:25 AM   #107
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Not exactly true. If the government regulates the market it is not free. It's just a matter of degree.
In the context of government, it's free.

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Originally Posted by zync View Post
Unions can, however exist in a truly free market. However, in this day, unions often lobby for government regulation that is pro-union. That's more of a grey area.
That's true.

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Originally Posted by zync View Post
As for Germany itself? I'd imagine that it's comparable to us. They're 26 on the index of econmic freedom. We're at 10. They're still listed in the "mostly free" section with us.
Agreed
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 12:37 PM   #108
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...
So basically, the end result is "I want to run my business and have no one require anything of me at all. I shouldn't have to report anything to the government, income or payments. I should have no one but myself to deal with." Got it. Too bad. You know, it is a choice to go into business. If you don't like it, don't do it. That was easy. (sound familiar?)

Quote:
1. I support companies paying whatever they want to. Whom you decide to work for is a voluntary choice. It allows you to vote with your employment because labor is a market just like any other.

2. I don't believe that welfare shouldn't exist. If I'm forced to pay it, I should be able to get it back. I don't really believe that we should have to pay for it. If we knew there was no safety net, we'd be more careful about saving. Additionally, private entities are equipped to help people in need. The government is the most inefficient at it. If I could pay a charity with those taxes instead, I'd be glad to do it.
You think private charity would handle tens of millions of hungry people needing a place to live in a fully efficient manner? You have much more trust in anyone than I do.

As long as you have rock-bottom wages, that is what you will have to deal with. You can repeat over and over that where you work is a voluntary choice. Yes, it's true. What does that have to do with anything, though? As long as there is a company providing jobs, there will be people to fill those spaces because something is better than nothing. If those jobs pay below a living wage, the people who have those jobs cannot pay to live. Then they have two choices: quit the job, make no money, and go on assistance; or stay at the job, make little money, and go on assistance. Or live on the street and beg for food if assistance is not available.

Now, your response is "Well, this will make that person want to work harder to get better wages." Okay, then they leave and someone else moves into their spot and the cycle starts over. In this case, you will ALWAYS have people working full time jobs who cannot even support themselves and one child. It's a never-ending cycle as long as very low wages are supported.

So then in this case, pick one:
A. I want to pay towards welfare so that I can subsidize companies' low wages.
B. I would rather that those who don't make a living wage go homeless and without food unless they can be helped by a private charity. If there isn't enough charity to help everyone, that's not my problem.

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3. No. But I don't work for those companies and if I did, I'd start looking for a new job. However, I support their right to do so. Just because I don't agree with something doesn't mean I don't support their right to do so. That's kind of what freedom is based on.
Well, then that answers all I need to know. If the game is rigged this way, then all hope is lost.

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I would imagine that is because the labor pool is now so large that they can pick and choose.
So, the labor pool is so large that they can pick and choose, but they can't find anyone to fill their no-skills jobs. Something doesn't add up. And I'm not sure I fully place the blame on the general public. I'm placing a large part of it on the businesses. Ask for a 4-year degree and 5 years of experience for an entry-level position, and you wonder why you have so few applicants? It's not rocket surgery.

Look, we'll never agree, so we can go on and on. I like to see people get paid a fair wage for a fair days' work. You like to see business profit as much as possible, regardless of the worker, under the guise of "free market principles".
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 02:06 PM   #109
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First of all, I'd like to note that you completely misrepresent my views. As such, let's continue. All of your assumptions are based on how our economy operates now, but we don't have a truly free market.

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So basically, the end result is "I want to run my business and have no one require anything of me at all. I shouldn't have to report anything to the government, income or payments. I should have no one but myself to deal with." Got it. Too bad. You know, it is a choice to go into business. If you don't like it, don't do it. That was easy. (sound familiar?)
I'm not arguing only for myself. I'm arguing for all business. In order for our society to continue as is, there must be businesses and workers. So there really is no "don't like it, don't do it" route. Individually, yes. And that is why I'm choosing to do it, but even if I don't I'm still burdened (my wages will be lower because the cost of employing someone is higher for example).


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You think private charity would handle tens of millions of hungry people needing a place to live in a fully efficient manner? You have much more trust in anyone than I do.
No. I know they won't. But they wouldn't have to because there would be MORE employment.

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As long as you have rock-bottom wages, that is what you will have to deal with. You can repeat over and over that where you work is a voluntary choice. Yes, it's true. What does that have to do with anything, though? As long as there is a company providing jobs, there will be people to fill those spaces because something is better than nothing. If those jobs pay below a living wage, the people who have those jobs cannot pay to live. Then they have two choices: quit the job, make no money, and go on assistance; or stay at the job, make little money, and go on assistance. Or live on the street and beg for food if assistance is not available.
That is your assumption. And it's refuted by evidence.
Remember the link I provided earlier? Index of Economic Freedom
Let's look at the unemployment rate of the top ten on the list:
1. Hong Kong 4.4%
2. Singapore 2.1%
3. Australia 5.1%
4. New Zealand 6.5%
5. Switzerland 4.5%
6. Canada 8%
7. Chile 1.5%
8. Mauritius 7.5%
9. Ireland 13.5%
10. United States 9.6%

The average of that graph shows that unemployment increases as economic freedom decreases.

Markets are not a race to the bottom. They're a race to equilibrium. Employers always want to pay less. So why don't they? The going rate for my services is a good multiple of minimum wage. And as a freelancer they can pay me less than minimum wage. They could pay me $2 an hour. But they don't. Why? Because I'm worth way more than that in the market. If the budget is too low, I don't take it. I provide a product that is worth what it is worth.

In other words, they can't get what I'm selling for less. I have skills that are worth that amount. They could certainly find someone cheaper. But my product will almost always be better. I have experience, I'm knowledgeable, and I've built up my work. After getting burned by a few two bit hacks, they'll pay my rate because they won't have to deal with getting a crap product.

The same works everywhere else. There are some jobs that people won't do for $X even if $X > 0. You wouldn't work for $0.50, would you? At that point why bother? When the answer to "why bother" becomes, "why not" you will find people willing to work.

If you're not making a "living wage" you could look elsewhere. I'm not saying it's easy. But those not making a living wage are often people with no marketable skills. So sometimes you have to take it on the chin and take a low wage in order to get those skills.

I also think unpaid internships are wrong, but there are thousands of people willing to take them just to get skills.

If there was this huge plight of people who are employed but didn't have enough money to live, there would be some market pushback. So either they don't exist, or they don't push back because the government subsidizes them.

And, by the same token, there are always more businesses to work for.

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Now, your response is "Well, this will make that person want to work harder to get better wages." Okay, then they leave and someone else moves into their spot and the cycle starts over. In this case, you will ALWAYS have people working full time jobs who cannot even support themselves and one child. It's a never-ending cycle as long as very low wages are supported.
Here's the key to breaking the cycle. Make it easier on businesses. I know that goes counter to everything you believe in, but just follow me. Every burden on business gets passed on to either the consumer or the employee. Why? Because everyone wants to maintain their rate but only the business owner has the power to do so. But if it's easier to start a business, it's easier for competition to arise and then they have to lower their margins and pay more to maintain their employees.

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So then in this case, pick one:
A. I want to pay towards welfare so that I can subsidize companies' low wages.
B. I would rather that those who don't make a living wage go homeless and without food unless they can be helped by a private charity. If there isn't enough charity to help everyone, that's not my problem.
I'm not picking anything in your illogical scenario. I'll pick C. I would rather have a prosperous free market economy with economic mobility and let charity take care of the people that can't make it on their own.

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Well, then that answers all I need to know. If the game is rigged this way, then all hope is lost.
So if the game is rigged toward freedom, all hope is lost? You can't accept that other people should be free to do things they want to if you don't approve? Or is it that companies should be able to pay what they want that you object to—even if their workers don't?



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So, the labor pool is so large that they can pick and choose, but they can't find anyone to fill their no-skills jobs. Something doesn't add up. And I'm not sure I fully place the blame on the general public. I'm placing a large part of it on the businesses. Ask for a 4-year degree and 5 years of experience for an entry-level position, and you wonder why you have so few applicants? It's not rocket surgery.
These are two different things. You said that they're looking for people with experience. I was talking about places that wanted anyone. There's a lot of unemployed people, but they're not all actively looking. I don't know how it is in your area, maybe they are.

The business I mentioned definitely wasn't looking for experience.

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Look, we'll never agree, so we can go on and on. I like to see people get paid a fair wage for a fair days' work. You like to see business profit as much as possible, regardless of the worker, under the guise of "free market principles".
What kind of BS is that? Don't put words in my mouth, especially when you have no idea where I'm coming from.

I would ABSOLUTELY LOVE to see people get paid a fair wage for a fair day's work. But you must remember that people agree to their wages. A fair wage is what you're willing to work for, otherwise you wouldn't work. No one can force you to accept a wage. If you don't like it, find another place. There are other places to work. And there would be even more if government got out of business.

We don't disagree on whether or not people should make a fair amount of money. That's where your group always thinks my group is heartless and cold. We just don't believe that the way to fix it is the same. And I'd say that we've been on a relatively slow decline and things are shifting more and more to the way you want them, yet you're getting the opposite result. Don't you think it's time to reconsider?
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 12:51 AM   #110
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officially the most offensively off topic forum thread I have ever seen. And I remember when the internet was all grey and purple.

I mean seriously, did all the mods die in a car accident?
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 02:07 AM   #111
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Let's look at the unemployment rate of the top ten on the list:
1. Hong Kong 4.4%
2. Singapore 2.1%
3. Australia 5.1%
4. New Zealand 6.5%
5. Switzerland 4.5%
6. Canada 8%
7. Chile 1.5%
8. Mauritius 7.5%
9. Ireland 13.5%
10. United States 9.6%

The average of that graph shows that unemployment increases as economic freedom decreases.
Does it? Chile has the lowest unemployment and it is at #7, and Ireland is a special case thanks to the financial crisis.

There are also rather a lot of tax havens on that list.

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A fair wage is what you're willing to work for, otherwise you wouldn't work. No one can force you to accept a wage.
But then aren't you a scrounger?

Additionally the minimum acceptable cost of living in the US is pretty high.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 02:52 AM   #112
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I would ABSOLUTELY LOVE to see people get paid a fair wage for a fair day's work. But you must remember that people agree to their wages. A fair wage is what you're willing to work for, otherwise you wouldn't work. No one can force you to accept a wage. If you don't like it, find another place. There are other places to work. And there would be even more if government got out of business.
I understand the general points you're making but our current situation is much more complicated - something very weird has happened...

Recently manufacturing companies found their own industrial Jurassic Park full of hundreds of millions of people who were living in effectively pre-industrial revolution conditions - China. This huge hungry reservoir of labour has been built up over 60 years through their dictatorship's policies not the market. We've now suddenly flooded (well over the last 15 years or so) our economies with a billion or so people to whom near starvation wages are better than well, starving.

Things are starting to correct but again China isn't allowing the market free reign. Their one big huge resource is this pool of cheap labour. They're doing everything they can to prevent the correction until they've modernised. Which will probably another 10 or so years. Whether our western economies can take another 10 or so years of the 'benefits' of this rigged market is moot.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 07:30 AM   #113
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officially the most offensively off topic forum thread I have ever seen. And I remember when the internet was all grey and purple.

I mean seriously, did all the mods die in a car accident?
Yep, you should probably unsub if people peaceably arguing about politics "offends" you.

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Does it? Chile has the lowest unemployment and it is at #7, and Ireland is a special case thanks to the financial crisis.

There are also rather a lot of tax havens on that list.
I said average trend. Those are outliers.

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But then aren't you a scrounger?
You mean someone on welfare? I didn't say find no job.

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Originally Posted by Eraserhead View Post
Additionally the minimum acceptable cost of living in the US is pretty high.
Not much higher than minimum wage.

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Originally Posted by jeremy h View Post
I understand the general points you're making but our current situation is much more complicated - something very weird has happened...
Yes, it is always more complicated. However, that quote was about the US, not about China. China is it's own animal.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 08:16 AM   #114
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I don't know how this would affect me in the UK. If it becomes standard that they're manufactured in the US and prices increase to reflect that, I'll have to rethink what computer brand I buy next.

But I don't think it's going to become standard for the foreseeable future.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 08:27 AM   #115
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Yes, it is always more complicated. However, that quote was about the US, not about China. China is it's own animal.
Err... yes... but my whole point is really that you're not independent of each other.

In the west when we talk about competitiveness the elephant in the room is China. That's were the pressure on wages is coming from for us all. It's why I can buy a mobile phone for a £5 but it's also why we're loosing our middle income jobs.

By the way the Chinese don't want the wages they've got - from what I see on the news there seems to be huge pressure there for pay rises etc and the tensions there are the result of the authorities trying to keep a lid on things.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 09:01 AM   #116
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I'm not picking anything in your illogical scenario. I'll pick C. I would rather have a prosperous free market economy with economic mobility and let charity take care of the people that can't make it on their own.
So, if business were given free reign to do whatever they wanted, we would have mostly good-paying jobs with livable wages, and those few who couldn't make it would be helped by private charity? Is this a correct representation of your views? I love the idea, but do you honestly think this is realistic and it would happen the way you envision?

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The business I mentioned definitely wasn't looking for experience.

But you must remember that people agree to their wages. A fair wage is what you're willing to work for, otherwise you wouldn't work. No one can force you to accept a wage.
If I'm destitute and need to provide for my family, I would get to the point where I'd accept anything. Someone offering me $5 to mow their 6-acre lawn? It's $5 I didn't have before, and $5 that could buy a meal, but that's not a "fair" wage just because I accepted it. Or, maybe under the ideology of Libertarianism that's exactly what makes it fair? I don't know.

But, this brings up an interesting conundrum. You were lamenting earlier about people in the welfare line, while they were numerous jobs available that the owners were saying they were having a hard time filling. Now...let's revisit your quote:

"A fair wage is what you're willing to work for, otherwise you wouldn't work."

Is it at all possible that these places were offering wages that people just didn't think were fair? There's a point where it goes past needing the money, and goes into being taken advantage of. Or is it "fair" to offer a wage that clearly isn't up to par solely because you have a number of people needing work? If all those people were not taking the job because they didn't think the wages were fair, do you blame them?

Again, great in ideology, bad in practice (in my opinion)

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officially the most offensively off topic forum thread I have ever seen. And I remember when the internet was all grey and purple.

I mean seriously, did all the mods die in a car accident?
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Yep, you should probably unsub if people peaceably arguing about politics "offends" you.
Indeed. One of the things I like about this forum is that it is moderated, but loosely. I'm on another forum where if you mention one word off topic, the thread gets locked immediately. Hell, even if you start a thread based on a topic that was discussed six years before, the mod locks it and says to continue the old thread. It's really annoying.

I much prefer to be able to veer off into interesting discussions and arguments, as long as they remain somewhat civil. Heck, I rather enjoy the banter here and get a bit sad when some of the people I don't like get banned.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 09:53 AM   #117
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I already gave you the best one—HONG F'N KONG.
It's interesting you choose a place where the state owns virtually all the land as an example of a free market economy.35% of total government revenue comes from land taxes.This is why Hong Kong has relatively low income and profit taxes.If you include land taxes taxation rates are similar to many other Asian countries.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 01:18 PM   #118
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It's interesting you choose a place where the state owns virtually all the land as an example of a free market economy.35% of total government revenue comes from land taxes.This is why Hong Kong has relatively low income and profit taxes.If you include land taxes taxation rates are similar to many other Asian countries.
The same applies to Singapore. I guess if you add that and the compulsory social security then Singapores taxes are reasonably high.
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Old Dec 8, 2012, 03:49 AM   #119
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You mean someone on welfare? I didn't say find no job.
So if all the available jobs offer only the minimum wage, which you yourself admit isn't liveable on, what should they do?

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Not much higher than minimum wage.
Rent + Food + Utilities + Enough to see your family once a year + Transport to work + A couple of nights out a month + Childcare (if two people in a family work).

In London for a single person you are probably talking £9k-£10k/year minimum. On the other hand a single person who works at Foxconn in China easily meets that standard of living.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 11:42 PM   #120
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So, if business were given free reign to do whatever they wanted, we would have mostly good-paying jobs with livable wages, and those few who couldn't make it would be helped by private charity? Is this a correct representation of your views? I love the idea, but do you honestly think this is realistic and it would happen the way you envision?
I do. And it's happened.

If you force it it's a whole different problem. Look at it this way. Though I know it's not possible, say that we increase minimum wage to $10/hr and no one loses a job. So to stay in business, most companies will need to raise prices.

What would happen in that scenario is that those making under $10/hr will benefit slightly (until prices raise and effectively negate their gain). Those making over $10 won't get a raise but they'll have to deal with higher prices so they are worse off.

Those who are well to do will barely notice. So increasing minimum wage will help some people in the short term, but it hurts the middle class the most because they will see no gain and higher prices.

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If I'm destitute and need to provide for my family, I would get to the point where I'd accept anything. Someone offering me $5 to mow their 6-acre lawn? It's $5 I didn't have before, and $5 that could buy a meal, but that's not a "fair" wage just because I accepted it. Or, maybe under the ideology of Libertarianism that's exactly what makes it fair? I don't know.
In that scenario, I guess it depends on context. If you're just looking for a meal, that satisfies your goal. If you're looking for gainful employment, that's not going to satisfy your goal.

You'd have to be pretty hard up to get to that point I would imagine. In my view, scenarios like that will occur less often than if we continue on our current course.

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But, this brings up an interesting conundrum. You were lamenting earlier about people in the welfare line, while they were numerous jobs available that the owners were saying they were having a hard time filling. Now...let's revisit your quote:

"A fair wage is what you're willing to work for, otherwise you wouldn't work."

Is it at all possible that these places were offering wages that people just didn't think were fair? There's a point where it goes past needing the money, and goes into being taken advantage of. Or is it "fair" to offer a wage that clearly isn't up to par solely because you have a number of people needing work? If all those people were not taking the job because they didn't think the wages were fair, do you blame them?

Again, great in ideology, bad in practice (in my opinion)
No, I don't blame them. It's always a better value proposition to do nothing and get some money than to do something and get a similar amount of money. I don't believe it's moral, and it certainly isn't going to help you better your life. That's why people on welfare stay on welfare.

Now, one person did get one of the jobs. To him it was probably worth more to take a job than a check from taxpayers.

I've been on unemployment and I felt guilty. I've probably taken 4 weeks of unemployment in my life. Once I was let go from a poorly run company at the beginning of the current recession because I was lowest on the totem pole. The second time I was let go from a company that was great before the boss died and his wife took over and ran it into the ground. After that, I just stuck with it with a few freelance clients and now I'm doing fairly well for myself.

So I have been on both sides of this thing.

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Indeed. One of the things I like about this forum is that it is moderated, but loosely. I'm on another forum where if you mention one word off topic, the thread gets locked immediately. Hell, even if you start a thread based on a topic that was discussed six years before, the mod locks it and says to continue the old thread. It's really annoying.

I much prefer to be able to veer off into interesting discussions and arguments, as long as they remain somewhat civil. Heck, I rather enjoy the banter here and get a bit sad when some of the people I don't like get banned.
Agreed.

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It's interesting you choose a place where the state owns virtually all the land as an example of a free market economy.35% of total government revenue comes from land taxes.This is why Hong Kong has relatively low income and profit taxes.If you include land taxes taxation rates are similar to many other Asian countries.
Land ownership does hamper them slightly. And it was mentioned in the Heritage Foundation study that I linked. Imagine how much more could be done with that freedom in Hong Kong as well.

Also note that they score Hong Kong at a 90 for property rights while we get 85.
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Old Dec 11, 2012, 12:14 AM   #121
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So if all the available jobs offer only the minimum wage, which you yourself admit isn't liveable on, what should they do?
1. This is an impossible scenario since only 5% of workers make minimum wage.
2. I never said specifically that you can't live on minimum wage. You probably can. In my state it's about $16,000 a year. You can rent a place for about $750 a month here if you're not picky and some will even include utilities in that price. That's $9000 leaving $7000 left over. That's about $550 a month after the little bit of taxes you'd pay. That's definitely do-able. It's not great, but it's enough to live on. And it's a lot easier if you have a partner or a roommate. Most people get roommates to help with those costs. You don't have to live alone.
3. In the current system what can they do?
4. In a true free market economy there's greater competition. And that translates to more, better-paying jobs because labor is also a market.
5. Most of the people making minimum wage are high school students so they don't have most of these expenses.

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Rent + Food + Utilities + Enough to see your family once a year + Transport to work + A couple of nights out a month + Childcare (if two people in a family work).
Rent+food+utilities+childcare+transportation (if necessary) are all necessities when you're looking at whether a wage is livable. Visiting family and nights out are nice but are not necessities.

Does it suck? Of course. But low wage jobs are not a career. They're a stepping stone. If you're a good worker, you won't make minimum wage for long. Either your current employer will pay you more to keep you, or you can find better employment elsewhere.

I should also mention that utilities are electricity, water, phone, trash service, and perhaps natural gas. That's all that is necessary. Cable and internet are luxuries. Many people consider the internet a necessity, and if it truly is, you can go to a library. You could probably also do without a phone, but you need one to get employment more easily and in cases of emergency.

I'd also like to point out that if you're having trouble affording yourself, you shouldn't be having children. Like it or not, it's a choice, just like moving away from your family. Sure you can accidentally get pregnant, but you can't accidentally have sex (obviously I'm ignoring rape).

I feel like a bunch of people make poor choices and when things backfire they want help. I see a lot of people living outside of their means. Do you know how many times I've seen a person with a brand new Mercedes living in an apartment complex? I saw a neon green Lambo at an Amscot a couple of weeks ago. I live in decent house, but I can't afford a Mercedes. Or, I could "afford" it but I'd like to still be able to pay my mortgage if something goes awry. I've only ever had used cars. You can't beat the value. I drive a $40K car. But I financed it for $20K.

When I was a kid our necessary expenses were a mortgage, food, and utilities. My grandmother took care of me during the day, and my parents were decent enough to stay home because they knew they couldn't afford to go out. My parents were hard workers and they made sure I had a good education so that I wouldn't have to work the same types of jobs that they have.

And because they lived within their means, I have a better life and so do they.
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Old Dec 11, 2012, 12:27 AM   #122
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Anyway guys, it's been fun but we're just going around and around here. It's good to debate. Discourse founded this country.
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Old Dec 11, 2012, 02:13 AM   #123
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And it's a lot easier if you have a partner or a roommate.
But then you might well have a kid, and they aren't cheap.

Quote:
Originally Posted by zync View Post
Rent+food+utilities+childcare+transportation (if necessary) are all necessities when you're looking at whether a wage is livable. Visiting family and nights out are nice but are not necessities.
Sorry, but you need to have some fun too. All the Chinese migrant workers can afford to go home and see their families at Chinese New Year (otherwise you wouldn't have a billion journeys at that time of year) and I'm sure they also go out to the local dive bar and stuff sometimes - drinking in a cheap bar in the developing world is very cheap - probably a beer is 10p.

I think it is absolutely legitimate to say that if you can't have any fun at all that you are in absolute (and not relative) poverty.

And lets not forget clothes, TV's etc.
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