Evidence that having a degree doesn't make you less of a dumbass...
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30-05-2014, 02:08 PM
RE: Evidence that having a degree doesn't make you less of a dumbass...
(30-05-2014 10:30 AM)djkamilo Wrote:  Ok, as far as US Steel, it was able to maintain its marketshare by scaring the American public into advocating against free trade especially from Asia. Asian steel would pose a competitive nightmare for the Steel industry due to the lower prices offered. The narrative was that it would kill American jobs. I would argue that they would be freed to work other positions but what do I know.

That is the big lie that free market proponents want to sell. People are not interchangeable or infinitely plastic.

There are many one-industry towns - mines, mills, manufacturers. The local economy is entirely dependent on it.
It is not realistic to expect some 45 year-old high school graduate who has worked in the steel mill for 27 years to be able to retrain and/or relocate.

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30-05-2014, 03:24 PM
RE: Evidence that having a degree doesn't make you less of a dumbass...
(30-05-2014 12:35 PM)djkamilo Wrote:  Yes, I realized I was speaking in regards to much more recent years. I apologize.

Ah, okay.

(30-05-2014 12:35 PM)djkamilo Wrote:  In its peak in the early 1900's US steel held up to 50% to 70% of market share in the US if I'm not mistaken. They won an anti trust case in 1920 because the supreme court found us steel not to have engaged in illegaly driving out competition in spite of being a very large company. In spite of having been a strong player other competitors have driven it down from the 1st to the 10th largest steel company in the world.

Their dominant position engendered complacency, that is certainly true. Indeed, similar attitudes set in after the post-WWII boom in American automakers and early tech companies like IBM.

However, the antebellum and postbellum situations (wrt WWI in this case) are not at all comparable. The war had the effect of greatly increasing demand and destroying vast parts of the European competition - for a while, players in the US market basically couldn't fail, and that was reflected in the success of smaller, riskier, more adaptable producers.

So, by 1920 there weren't grounds for an anti-trust action, but it would have been a very different story 20 years prior. Of course, at that time the likes of US Steel were then sufficiently powerful as to prevent any such thing...

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30-05-2014, 04:58 PM (This post was last modified: 30-05-2014 05:14 PM by Luminon.)
RE: Evidence that having a degree doesn't make you less of a dumbass...
(29-05-2014 08:31 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  Some highlights include...

1 - Complete naivete that ignores the reality of how people with power can and will abuse it for their own gain (economic or otherwise).
People with what? Sorry, you don't get to invent a new kind of people called "people with power" to excuse whatever you say.
There are various kinds of power and they can make people do various things. Force can only make people do slave labor. You can't force programmers or inventors. Any society that uses violence to motivate people will lag back technologically and be overrun by hi-tech neighbors. (see Muslim world or North Korea) There is also a limit to what people do motivated by money. Money best motivate people for straightforward, repetitive tasks. But when it comes to creativity and problem-solving, increasing money is a distraction. Intrinsic value and mastery is motivating for the most complex tasks that modern society requires to have shiny goodies like Google products... Peaceful, free societies are more advanced and resilient. Unless of course they become money-forging military empires, ready to be overrun by barbarians, such as ancient Rome.

Yes, there are dangerous people in the world. Why are they dangerous? Because there are many obedient people in the world. Mass obedience is the greatest source of power, source of danger and source of the state. People don't have power, not more than anybody else anyway, people give it up to authorities, that's the dangerous thing. If we should live in a free society, we must first learn not to take orders, to accept only negotiation and evidence.





(29-05-2014 08:31 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  2 - Complete disregard for facts when it does not agree with the pet theory.

3 - Grasping at inapplicable examples from centuries ago in an attempt to argue against when is happening in the world right now.

4 - Making up numbers and figures on the spot, which even then fail to demonstrate the point trying to be made.

5 - Reliance on vague 'axioms' instead of empirical evidence.
I believe Djkamilo can deal with these easily.

I just can't resist the minimum wage, which you mentioned. Minimum wage is nothing else than making hiring people more expensive. If people get more expensive, employers will just hire as few people as they can, they will hire the best ones with most experience, the cream of the crop and fire the rest or take away their benefits. Making labor expensive just takes away bottom rungs of the social ladder, it hurts the most needy ones. Anyway, the minimum wage is supposed to be just the starters job, in which you stay less than a year. 95 % of people in the U.S. earn higher than minimum wage.

http://www.unitedliberty.org/articles/17...-wage-hike

Anyway, why not set the minimum wage on 150 dollars per hour and solve the problem of poverty forever? Tongue
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30-05-2014, 05:47 PM
RE: Evidence that having a degree doesn't make you less of a dumbass...
(30-05-2014 04:58 PM)Luminon Wrote:  People with what? Sorry, you don't get to invent a new kind of people called "people with power" to excuse whatever you say.
There are various kinds of power and they can make people do various things. Force can only make people do slave labor. You can't force programmers or inventors. Any society that uses violence to motivate people will lag back technologically and be overrun by hi-tech neighbors. (see Muslim world or North Korea)

And they haven't been overrun. So, there's that.

Quote: There is also a limit to what people do motivated by money. Money best motivate people for straightforward, repetitive tasks. But when it comes to creativity and problem-solving, increasing money is a distraction.

I see you lack real-world experience. Your statement is just silly.

Quote: Intrinsic value and mastery is motivating for the most complex tasks that modern society requires to have shiny goodies like Google products... Peaceful, free societies are more advanced and resilient. Unless of course they become money-forging military empires, ready to be overrun by barbarians, such as ancient Rome.

I see you lack real-world experience. Every high-tech start up I know was motivated by people who wanted to get rich.

Quote:Yes, there are dangerous people in the world. Why are they dangerous? Because there are many obedient people in the world.

I see you lack real-world experience. Psychopaths and sociopaths are inherently dangerous - they are predators.

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30-05-2014, 05:52 PM
RE: Evidence that having a degree doesn't make you less of a dumbass...
(30-05-2014 05:47 PM)Chas Wrote:  
(30-05-2014 04:58 PM)Luminon Wrote:  People with what? Sorry, you don't get to invent a new kind of people called "people with power" to excuse whatever you say.
There are various kinds of power and they can make people do various things. Force can only make people do slave labor. You can't force programmers or inventors. Any society that uses violence to motivate people will lag back technologically and be overrun by hi-tech neighbors. (see Muslim world or North Korea)

And they haven't been overrun. So, there's that.

Also: "Muslim world"?

Way to stereotype.

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30-05-2014, 05:54 PM (This post was last modified: 30-05-2014 06:03 PM by TheGulegon.)
RE: Evidence that having a degree doesn't make you less of a dumbass...
(30-05-2014 10:30 AM)djkamilo Wrote:  
(30-05-2014 09:26 AM)Revenant77x Wrote:  US Steel, Standard Oil. We can start with them if you wish. BTW the appeal to authority you keep invoking is cute, as if someone need to have a degree in economics to have an opinion on regulatory law.

Ok, as far as US Steel, it was able to maintain its marketshare by scaring the American public into advocating against free trade especially from Asia. Asian steel would pose a competitive nightmare for the Steel industry due to the lower prices offered. The narrative was that it would kill American jobs. I would argue that they would be freed to work other positions but what do I know.

Standard Oil is a good case to make. It had up to 91% of marketshare production at its peak. By the time the anti-trust case was launched against it their market share was in steep decline from other competitors. It was eventually broken off into smaller companies. It would have become less competitive over the years in my opinion anyways but no way of knowing for sure.

A similar thing happened to A&P (once the largest grocery chain in the world) but in their case the legal battles lasted for years. By the time other competitors had caused A&P's decline in the 50's, the antitrust case against them was irrelevant.

BTW, I'm not appealing to authority as much as asking for basic economic concepts to be understood in order to understand the market, otherwise the conversation turns into a fuckfest of personal attacks and talking points. I never said you need a degree in economics, heck my background is Engineering, but at least do read some basics on it to have a field of communication that amkes sense.

Apologies, but I'm having a hard time accepting that if we were to time travel into the past and undo all the U.S. government backed regulations that came into being as a direct result of companies driving out competition (among other things like employing 10 year olds to work in/on, and around, extremely dangerous factory machinery), more companies from other industries wouldn't have taken advantage of the fact that such despicable activities were not outlawed, and engaged in those practices themselves under the premise that "they aren't breaking the law, so we won't be, either!"

Even if only 1 in 10 businesses planned to crush every mom-n-pop operation across the land so as to absorb their territories on their way to becoming big enough to bribe politicians and buy governments (to transform what was a free market into their own) and setting what they're selling up to be the ONLY choice (recourse?) the consumer has (or hiring 10 year olds to work in asbestos factories), that's one too many for me Undecided

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31-05-2014, 12:34 AM (This post was last modified: 31-05-2014 12:59 AM by EvolutionKills.)
RE: Evidence that having a degree doesn't make you less of a dumbass...
(30-05-2014 04:58 PM)Luminon Wrote:  I just can't resist the minimum wage, which you mentioned. Minimum wage is nothing else than making hiring people more expensive. If people get more expensive, employers will just hire as few people as they can, they will hire the best ones with most experience, the cream of the crop and fire the rest or take away their benefits. Making labor expensive just takes away bottom rungs of the social ladder, it hurts the most needy ones. Anyway, the minimum wage is supposed to be just the starters job, in which you stay less than a year. 95 % of people in the U.S. earn higher than minimum wage.

http://www.unitedliberty.org/articles/17...-wage-hike

Anyway, why not set the minimum wage on 150 dollars per hour and solve the problem of poverty forever? Tongue

The current Federal Minimum wage is nowhere close to a living wage. I make more than the minimum wage, but still far less than a living wage. A living wage, adjusted for inflation, would be $10.50 and hour (still less than Canada). If adjusted for inflation and the increase in worker productivity, it would be in excess of $16 an hour (like Australia). Workers can now do more in less time, and who gained the benefit of all this increased production? It all went into the hands of the businesses.

I'm a night auditor at one of the largest and busiest hotels in my city. I basically run the entire hotel by myself for 8 hours every night, and am solely responsible for a 5 story building containing in excess of 100 rooms and 400 people when we're sold out (and we are for 4 months straight every summer thanks to one of the nation's largest the indoor water parks being next door). I am entirely responsible for maintaining the hotel for those 8 hours. In addition to my regular front desk duties (selling rooms, checking people in, making reservations, etc.) I also have to make all room calls because I am by myself. Anybody needs anything, I have to take care of it; I don't have any housemen or maintenance personnel to take care of it. I also do all of the night's paperwork, crunching how well we did and creating a packet of information for the GM in the morning.

I've had this job over 2 years. My wage was the minimum plus a 50 cent premium for being third shift. I got a 1 year review (4 months late) that gave me a 25 cent raise. $8 an hour for a 2 year veteran in charge of an entire hotel by himself, and I'm still $2.50 short of what I'd be effectively making (as a new hire, not a 2 year vet) if I'd have been doing this as part of a team back in 1970. So I've been here in what is effectively a dead-end position, doing the work that would have required a team of people to do only a few decades ago, and I can't make enough to pay my bills and student loans (but the hotel's owner has a yacht and a lakefront million dollar home). I can't find another job that pays any better, and additional employment is hard to find as well. This hotel makes money like gangbusters, I should know, I've seen the fucking numbers.

I make more than the minimum wage, and it's still nowhere close to being enough. Your Forbes article can suck a dick.

Also, in regards to your Seattle clip. Our hotel doesn't pay people $15 an hour (clearly). It also doesn't provide free food to employees. It does have health care, but only after 3 months and they still take it out of your paycheck anyways (so there goes even more of your $7.25 an hour). We have no automatic paid vacations, all vacation and sick days are rolled into one lump sum that isn't accessible until you've been here a year anyways. There is a 401K, but those are shit anyways. We have zero paid holidays, we're a fucking hotel. That actually makes me think that the Seattle article (and whoever else they are quoting) is involved in some serious making up of shit. Hotels are always open, 24/7, 365 days a year; it's the nature of the fucking business. Also, nobody gets overtime. If one of the first shift people are late, they're expected to make up the difference by coming in earlier the next day to make up the difference so that I never get overtime. Because time and a half on $8 an hour would be unconscionable I guess.

But no, I'm sure that at $10.50 an hour the owner wouldn't be able to make his yacht payment and fire me so that he can replace me with... oh right.. I'm the only fucking person on staff for 8 hours, I literally cannot be reduced or stretched any further. They've already taken advantage of the system to keep our wages low and hire as few people as possible, we're running on a shoestring crew as is. You literally cannot have any less people running this hotel, and I know for a fact that other hotels in the area do just fine but with 2~3 times the amount of staff. Our breakfast staff is 3 people on a sold out morning of 400 guests, while across the street they'll have 6 people for 300 guests; and that hotel still makes money too! Like hell they can't afford to pay us more. They can, but then the owner would get just a fraction less; and he won't do that unless he's forced to.

I'm not talking in hypotheticals here Luminon, this is reality; and the reality is things are fucked.

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31-05-2014, 03:43 AM (This post was last modified: 31-05-2014 05:42 AM by Luminon.)
RE: Evidence that having a degree doesn't make you less of a dumbass...
(31-05-2014 12:34 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  The current Federal Minimum wage is nowhere close to a living wage. I make more than the minimum wage, but still far less than a living wage. A living wage, adjusted for inflation, would be $10.50 and hour (still less than Canada). If adjusted for inflation and the increase in worker productivity, it would be in excess of $16 an hour (like Australia). Workers can now do more in less time, and who gained the benefit of all this increased production? It all went into the hands of the businesses.
One of many problems with minimum wage is, it does not do anything in the long term. It makes employees more expensive, not less, so if anything, it decreases productivity. OK, everyone gets a few dollars more. But the amount of labor and production stays the same or lesser. It does not matter what number you earn, it matters what you can buy for that number of dollars. If minimum wage is increased, in a year or so everyone adjusts their prices for a greater money level, but equivalent or lesser productivity. The buying power is pissed away in inflation.

(31-05-2014 12:34 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  I'm a night auditor at one of the largest and busiest hotels in my city. I basically run the entire hotel by myself for 8 hours every night, and am solely responsible for a 5 story building containing in excess of 100 rooms and 400 people when we're sold out (and we are for 4 months straight every summer thanks to one of the nation's largest the indoor water parks being next door). I am entirely responsible for maintaining the hotel for those 8 hours. In addition to my regular front desk duties (selling rooms, checking people in, making reservations, etc.) I also have to make all room calls because I am by myself. Anybody needs anything, I have to take care of it; I don't have any housemen or maintenance personnel to take care of it. I also do all of the night's paperwork, crunching how well we did and creating a packet of information for the GM in the morning.

I've had this job over 2 years. My wage was the minimum plus a 50 cent premium for being third shift. I got a 1 year review (4 months late) that gave me a 25 cent raise. $8 an hour for a 2 year veteran in charge of an entire hotel by himself, and I'm still $2.50 short of what I'd be effectively making (as a new hire, not a 2 year vet) if I'd have been doing this as part of a team back in 1970. So I've been here in what is effectively a dead-end position, doing the work that would have required a team of people to do only a few decades ago, and I can't make enough to pay my bills and student loans (but the hotel's owner has a yacht and a lakefront million dollar home). I can't find another job that pays any better, and additional employment is hard to find as well. This hotel makes money like gangbusters, I should know, I've seen the fucking numbers.

I make more than the minimum wage, and it's still nowhere close to being enough. Your Forbes article can suck a dick.
Sounds like an awful lot of work. So the manager is a rich, greedy guy. Unfortunately, the law can't force him to pay you more by increasing minimum wage, if he can just decrease the bonuses you've earned. Maybe he can't do that right away because of contracts, but he'll do it in the long term.

(31-05-2014 12:34 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  Also, in regards to your Seattle clip. Our hotel doesn't pay people $15 an hour (clearly). It also doesn't provide free food to employees. It does have health care, but only after 3 months and they still take it out of your paycheck anyways (so there goes even more of your $7.25 an hour). We have no automatic paid vacations, all vacation and sick days are rolled into one lump sum that isn't accessible until you've been here a year anyways. There is a 401K, but those are shit anyways. We have zero paid holidays, we're a fucking hotel. That actually makes me think that the Seattle article (and whoever else they are quoting) is involved in some serious making up of shit. Hotels are always open, 24/7, 365 days a year; it's the nature of the fucking business. Also, nobody gets overtime. If one of the first shift people are late, they're expected to make up the difference by coming in earlier the next day to make up the difference so that I never get overtime. Because time and a half on $8 an hour would be unconscionable I guess.

But no, I'm sure that at $10.50 an hour the owner wouldn't be able to make his yacht payment and fire me so that he can replace me with... oh right.. I'm the only fucking person on staff for 8 hours, I literally cannot be reduced or stretched any further. They've already taken advantage of the system to keep our wages low and hire as few people as possible, we're running on a shoestring crew as is. You literally cannot have any less people running this hotel, and I know for a fact that other hotels in the area do just fine but with 2~3 times the amount of staff. Our breakfast staff is 3 people on a sold out morning of 400 guests, while across the street they'll have 6 people for 300 guests; and that hotel still makes money too! Like hell they can't afford to pay us more. They can, but then the owner would get just a fraction less; and he won't do that unless he's forced to.

I'm not talking in hypotheticals here Luminon, this is reality; and the reality is things are fucked.
Yeah. But reality is bigger than your hotel. I'm talking the same reality, only on greater scale and longer term.
It would be nice if the state made your employer pay you more. But the state isn't allowed to make special rules for individuals (unless it's Monsanto), at least in my country. It can only affect minimum wages in whole country. Which means that everybody will be affected the same way and it will come down to nothing in the long term.
The minimum wage will surely do only one thing: it will make it more difficult to find another job.

I know the economy feels like there is a minimum amount of need, nobody needs anything except the basic jobs. There's not enough money to go around for everyone, the richest people got them all.
Well, so what? The richest people can't possibly manage or spend them all, they want more. They should invest them into banks and stocks. These should invest into loans to the new business which creates competition, but also they pay back interest on the loans. (if government central bank does not manipulate the minimum interest rate!)
Sounds nice, but in practice that requires freedom to hire at any price and also an unregulated house market, the freedom to loan apartments at any price, so you can go and work anywhere and compete where you are wanted. You'll get paid more if you could leave for another job. And if that job is better paid, you should! Government makes it feel like there's no need for more people, more work, more money to go around. On free market people have the power to push the productivity as far as people's desire goes. If there's desire, there will be demand and there will be production. It will all have humble beginnings, but if the government does not print money, the value of money will increase and even if you earn little, you will afford more. I know that sounds like a fairy tale, but that's how economy works if government money printers are smashed to pieces and half the money in economy does not end in public sector by various visible and invisible taxes.

I see everywhere this stupid government mumbo-jumbo, government sees a numerical price and thinks it can change economical reality by forcing the change of numbers. This is literally a magical thinking! Numbers mean something only if they represent a real amount of goods and services in the economy. Forcing numbers will not help anything, it will disorient people, make them run in wrong directions and it will make them poorer. Your science alarms should go to red alert the moment you see such practices.
Government changes all the laws of nature in economical world. Money value decreases by inflation, labor gets more expensive, housing gets less available, people less mobile, employers get less competitive, contracts get more sticky and life in general gets more shitty.

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31-05-2014, 04:14 PM
RE: Evidence that having a degree doesn't make you less of a dumbass...
Sounds like a tough spot you're on EK.

If you think you're at a dead end job why not look elsewhere? There has to be something else you can do with your experience and so on.

As you've pointed out your employer has incentives to pay as little as they can for the expenses they have including labor. But there's also competition for labor in the market. The demand increases for the more experienced and accredited labor driving their prices up. Short supply of specific jobs will increase labor prices (wages) in those occupations.

It is my experience that you're better off trying to use your experience in positions that have short supply and match your skills in order to get a better deal rather than waiting for a minimum wage increase to be passed at the federal or state level. It seems that you would be a valuable asset anywhere you go.

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