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What the hell is wrong with the United States?
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27-06-2014, 01:55 AM
RE: What the hell is wrong with the United States?
It comes down to long term investment in the country and whether a government is willing do it or whether they are only focused on winning the next election and being financially rewarded by lobbyists.

A good education system will pay for itself, but not within any one government's term of office.
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27-06-2014, 01:59 AM
RE: What the hell is wrong with the United States?
Why isn't there an: all of the above option?


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27-06-2014, 02:30 PM (This post was last modified: 27-06-2014 02:35 PM by Luminon.)
RE: What the hell is wrong with the United States?
(27-06-2014 12:44 AM)Lunda Wrote:  Some, but Denmark has no tuition free system, nor does Finland (who BTW has been recognized as having the best educational system in the world) and they don't have oil. It has more to do with what the government is willing to spend money in. And in a functioning democracy, that reflects on the will of the people.
Isn't Denmark one of the poorest states of the EU? I heard they have a very low living standard, the middle class there is something like America's lower class.
I don't know about Finland.

(27-06-2014 12:44 AM)Lunda Wrote:  We are a part of the Nato forces in Afghanistan, you know. Still it's not an astronomical expense.
We were neutral in WW1 and profited of it, but the Germans stripped us of most of our valuables when they occupied us in WW2.
Nah, I meant REAL wars. Wold War I blew away all the productivity of the industrial revolution in 19th century.
It's not just about wealth, it is also about infrastructure and especially the people. WW1 literally wiped out some years of male population. And it destroyed the home populations emotionally, intellectually, morally... That means several subsequent generations of Abu Ghraib parenting and bad life decision-making, resulting in corrupt or even totalitarian regimes.

Germans looting resources are a nuisance. But with taxes high everywhere nowadays, all you have to do is to lower taxes and companies will come running like cockroaches to honey and they will turn a lifeless rock to green corporate garden. It worked with Japan and Taiwan, it would work with soggy Norwegian cliffs if there was need Wink

(27-06-2014 12:44 AM)Lunda Wrote:  Actually it's because of the government and their regulations the school system is so affordable. If you compare it to colleges and universities without any regulations, they can (and do) charge whatever they can get away with. And that is a lot.
I have to put my annoying economist hat on Smartass
Universities without regulations can get away with a lot, because government eliminates competition for them. Government can not make a good school by licensing, except by huge amounts of costly regulation that rarely works in the long run and creates lots of space for corruption. Only choice makes quality. The threat that students might walk away and stop paying gives schools quality. No direct payment is needed, in Australia there was a very successful program My Rich Uncle, with postponed payments as a share of future income. It worked in USA, but the government changed it to debt bank slavery.

Government can not make something cheap by law, any more than it can control seasons by law. Government cheap is the most expensive thing after government-ordered student loans from "private" banks. Everyone in the government system gets paid a lot more than you pay them and you pay on top of that. Where are the extra money coming from? From the taxes, of course. You pay with economic opportunities of jobs that will never arise because of the taxes and bureaucracy expenses. You probably pay with lower quality of service, because nobody has to do their best, they get paid just the same.
Also, just because it has a low price tag, doesn't mean it's actually cheap. The buying power is determined by the alternatives you can spend the money on. The government gets away with that, because it offers the visible and immediate seemingly cheap service for the greater invisible loss that is impossible to pinpoint. Only economists know Sad

If you are interested in more economy lessons, it's 10 bucks per hour on Skype, tax-free, through PayPal Wink
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27-06-2014, 03:27 PM
RE: What the hell is wrong with the United States?
Insularity!

"If you want a happy ending, that depends, of course, on where you stop your story." Orson Welles
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27-06-2014, 03:32 PM
RE: What the hell is wrong with the United States?
(27-06-2014 02:30 PM)Luminon Wrote:  
(27-06-2014 12:44 AM)Lunda Wrote:  Some, but Denmark has no tuition free system, nor does Finland (who BTW has been recognized as having the best educational system in the world) and they don't have oil. It has more to do with what the government is willing to spend money in. And in a functioning democracy, that reflects on the will of the people.
Isn't Denmark one of the poorest states of the EU? I heard they have a very low living standard, the middle class there is something like America's lower class.
I don't know about Finland.

(27-06-2014 12:44 AM)Lunda Wrote:  We are a part of the Nato forces in Afghanistan, you know. Still it's not an astronomical expense.
We were neutral in WW1 and profited of it, but the Germans stripped us of most of our valuables when they occupied us in WW2.
Nah, I meant REAL wars. Wold War I blew away all the productivity of the industrial revolution in 19th century.
It's not just about wealth, it is also about infrastructure and especially the people. WW1 literally wiped out some years of male population. And it destroyed the home populations emotionally, intellectually, morally... That means several subsequent generations of Abu Ghraib parenting and bad life decision-making, resulting in corrupt or even totalitarian regimes.

Germans looting resources are a nuisance. But with taxes high everywhere nowadays, all you have to do is to lower taxes and companies will come running like cockroaches to honey and they will turn a lifeless rock to green corporate garden. It worked with Japan and Taiwan, it would work with soggy Norwegian cliffs if there was need Wink

(27-06-2014 12:44 AM)Lunda Wrote:  Actually it's because of the government and their regulations the school system is so affordable. If you compare it to colleges and universities without any regulations, they can (and do) charge whatever they can get away with. And that is a lot.
I have to put my annoying economist hat on Smartass
Universities without regulations can get away with a lot, because government eliminates competition for them. Government can not make a good school by licensing, except by huge amounts of costly regulation that rarely works in the long run and creates lots of space for corruption. Only choice makes quality. The threat that students might walk away and stop paying gives schools quality. No direct payment is needed, in Australia there was a very successful program My Rich Uncle, with postponed payments as a share of future income. It worked in USA, but the government changed it to debt bank slavery.

Government can not make something cheap by law, any more than it can control seasons by law. Government cheap is the most expensive thing after government-ordered student loans from "private" banks. Everyone in the government system gets paid a lot more than you pay them and you pay on top of that. Where are the extra money coming from? From the taxes, of course. You pay with economic opportunities of jobs that will never arise because of the taxes and bureaucracy expenses. You probably pay with lower quality of service, because nobody has to do their best, they get paid just the same.
Also, just because it has a low price tag, doesn't mean it's actually cheap. The buying power is determined by the alternatives you can spend the money on. The government gets away with that, because it offers the visible and immediate seemingly cheap service for the greater invisible loss that is impossible to pinpoint. Only economists know Sad

If you are interested in more economy lessons, it's 10 bucks per hour on Skype, tax-free, through PayPal Wink

*NOTE*


The preceding incoherent rant is based on the fundamental misunderstandings of the author and bear in no way any relationship with reality. When pressed for any actual facts he will retreat into internet memes of varying degrees of relevance and a philosophical stance that "facts don't matter" please take anything said by the author with at least 1 grain of salt if not the entire shaker.

(31-07-2014 04:37 PM)Luminon Wrote:  America is full of guns, but they're useless, because nobody has the courage to shoot an IRS agent in self-defense
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27-06-2014, 05:40 PM
RE: What the hell is wrong with the United States?
(27-06-2014 02:30 PM)Luminon Wrote:  
(27-06-2014 12:44 AM)Lunda Wrote:  Some, but Denmark has no tuition free system, nor does Finland (who BTW has been recognized as having the best educational system in the world) and they don't have oil. It has more to do with what the government is willing to spend money in. And in a functioning democracy, that reflects on the will of the people.

Isn't Denmark one of the poorest states of the EU? I heard they have a very low living standard, the middle class there is something like America's lower class.
I don't know about Finland.

Well, if you want to base the wealth of a state on GDP; Denmark is ranked 14th out of 41 EU nations. The nation with the lowest GDP is San Marino. Gemrna is ranked first.

Also, according to the OECD, Denmark actually has a very high standard of living. As for the classes, all I can say is that there is a considerable gap between the top and bottom 20% of the population.

(27-06-2014 02:30 PM)Luminon Wrote:  
(27-06-2014 12:44 AM)Lunda Wrote:  We are a part of the Nato forces in Afghanistan, you know. Still it's not an astronomical expense.
We were neutral in WW1 and profited of it, but the Germans stripped us of most of our valuables when they occupied us in WW2.


Nah, I meant REAL wars. Wold War I blew away all the productivity of the industrial revolution in 19th century.
It's not just about wealth, it is also about infrastructure and especially the people. WW1 literally wiped out some years of male population. And it destroyed the home populations emotionally, intellectually, morally... That means several subsequent generations of Abu Ghraib parenting and bad life decision-making, resulting in corrupt or even totalitarian regimes.

Germans looting resources are a nuisance. But with taxes high everywhere nowadays, all you have to do is to lower taxes and companies will come running like cockroaches to honey and they will turn a lifeless rock to green corporate garden. It worked with Japan and Taiwan, it would work with soggy Norwegian cliffs if there was need Wink

Hold on; 'real wars'? The hell are you on? Afghanistan was as much of a 'real war' as either World War... Either way, onward we go.
Last I read, World War I did not blow away the productivity of the industrial revolution, it did cause significant alteration in the production, but it didn't blow it away. Hell, some nations, a la the United States actually saw considerable industrial booms because of their involvement in WWI.

Sure, I'll grant you that emotionally, many nation's populations suffered greatly, but I call bullshit on intellectually and morally; intellectualism didn't simply drop off the face of the earth, nor did morals.

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28-06-2014, 12:40 AM
RE: What the hell is wrong with the United States?
(27-06-2014 05:40 PM)Free Thought Wrote:  Well, if you want to base the wealth of a state on GDP; Denmark is ranked 14th out of 41 EU nations. The nation with the lowest GDP is San Marino. Gemrna is ranked first.

Also, according to the OECD, Denmark actually has a very high standard of living. As for the classes, all I can say is that there is a considerable gap between the top and bottom 20% of the population.
No GDP please. GDP is economic pseudoscience and political lie, because governments have a habit of counting in government spending as a positive gain.
Private sector spending is someone's income. But government spending is pure loss, because there is nobody we can point on the market who actually chose the stuff and no alternatives they could pay for.

I think I heard about the Danish poverty due to their welfare system. Welfare is pretty darn expensive, it is basically breeding a dependent voter population for stolen and printed money. Government can not make people richer by printing money any more than it can increase the value of money by printing and re-distributing them. Welfare is given to help people out of poverty, but everyone knows that welfare is the reason to stay poor.


(27-06-2014 05:40 PM)Free Thought Wrote:  Hold on; 'real wars'? The hell are you on? Afghanistan was as much of a 'real war' as either World War... Either way, onward we go.
I wasn't talking about Afghanistan. As far as invaders are concerned, Afghanistan is not their home turf. I am an European guy and I was talking about the home turf of WW 1 + 2. The place where I got born wasn't destroyed much, just some bombardments and enemy fronts moving back and forth. No dig-in warfare fortunately, but lots of people ended up in German or Russian labor camps.

(27-06-2014 05:40 PM)Free Thought Wrote:  Last I read, World War I did not blow away the productivity of the industrial revolution, it did cause significant alteration in the production, but it didn't blow it away. Hell, some nations, a la the United States actually saw considerable industrial booms because of their involvement in WWI.

Sure, I'll grant you that emotionally, many nation's populations suffered greatly, but I call bullshit on intellectually and morally; intellectualism didn't simply drop off the face of the earth, nor did morals.
Firstly, there is no way that a war can make a nation richer, except by looting. War is basically blowing up lots of valuable stuff. Each gun is a piece of metal that will not be used for something useful. It is a waste on mass scale. One might as well argue that breaking windows would make us richer.
No, all that quite useless crap was produced by theft - government counterfeiting money on mass scale. All that wealth was already there, in the economy, in the hands of people.

Intellectuals die a lot in wars, if they don't escape. Leftist intellectuals help to set up statist regimes (left or right, no difference, statism is both) and then escape to more liberal countries when the statism gets too oppressive, to do the same thing there. That happened in Germany - intellectuals cheered for the strong hand of national socialism and then escaped to USA, when they got what they wanted.

I don't know about WWI, but in WW2 and after the intellectuals of Europe died like flies. How so? There are laws that make all college-educated people backup officers (here in effect till early 2000's) and enemy forces take care of wiping them out. During WW2, 300 thousand of my intellectual countrymen died, which cleared the way for Communism (known for favoring the laborers). Later, Stalin wiped out Polish intellectual elite at the kill site of Katyne forest. I heard there were mass graves for officers/intellectuals like that all over eastern Europe, not just in Katyne.

So yes, intellectualism and morals did decline massively, only it was called Soviet and post-Soviet era and it called itself "scientific Communism" and it called itself "class justice", the same way that U.S. invasions call themselves "export of freedom & democracy". Politikspeak. Or better said, realpolitikspräche.
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28-06-2014, 01:46 AM
RE: What the hell is wrong with the United States?
In a "perfectly" free market, who would Lockheed Skunk Works sell their super weapons to, after there was no government to buy their stuff?
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28-06-2014, 01:55 AM (This post was last modified: 28-06-2014 05:36 PM by Michael_Tadlock.)
RE: What the hell is wrong with the United States?
Going to do some drive by posting here, since I haven't been taking part in this discussion.

It annoys me when people say "oh look the US was #1 in the 60's" as if it speaks to some kind of dramatic decline. The US was #1 in a lot to of things in the sixties. This was a time when most of asia was still not industrialized and European economies were still recovering from the last world war. I think what happened here is other countries caught up, not that the united states education system went over the deep end.

If you compare the top ten percent of US students to the top ten percent of students anywhere else in the world the US is doing just fine. The kids who are underperforming skew the numbers far more than the kids who performing up to standards or who are excelling. The countries with the best education also have some of the lowest income inequality. I think education is a good benchmark for how well a nation is address crime and poverty (and we all know how well the US is dealing with that).
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28-06-2014, 11:44 AM
RE: What the hell is wrong with the United States?
Your poll needs an option for all of the above.

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