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 Post subject: Re: Greece Financial Bailout
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 12:34 am 
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simple schoolboy wrote:
Yeah, you've already established that the hypothetical in case you fail to pay your medical bills situation necessitates a significant increase in federal power, at least in your opinion. Democratic talking points for the win!
which "significant increase" do you think i'm purporting?

also its not a hypothetical. it occurs everyday and effects every medical bill you'll ever pay in this country.

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 Post subject: Re: Greece Financial Bailout
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 1:32 am 
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I believe the original "you" referred to Littlewing, or perhaps just a hypothetical individual. And the happening every day means that the diner-dashing that undoubtedly occurs every day requires some sort of federal recourse? Methinks not.

Any new Democratic talking points?

Moreover, the effect on the bill from indigents who don't pay at all is probably less than the underpaying that occurs in the rather large medicaid and medicare pools. Do you contest that this effect is smaller than that of the the non-paying population?

Sure, our medical system is ludicrous, and undoubtedly you could find justifications for a public payer sort of system. But this? Is this the best the left can do?

You might require medical care that you are unable to pay for, and as we are required to treat you that necessitates you paying for insurance (which, as a young, relatively healthy person means subsidizing the birth control and end of life care of everyone else).

Should smokers get a discount? After all, several studies have suggested that dying of lung cancer and emphysema at 55 or 60 is significantly cheaper than dying of heart failure at 80. Bollocks. You want this sort of system and are trying to justify it as 'fair' after the fact.

As to the 'significant increase': as its not an enumerated power, I refer you to: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

Oh wait, the constitution was written by slaveholders, so it has no value. How could I forget? You win by default.


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 Post subject: Re: Greece Financial Bailout
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 8:02 pm 
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simple schoolboy wrote:
I believe the original "you" referred to Littlewing, or perhaps just a hypothetical individual. And the happening every day means that the diner-dashing that undoubtedly occurs every day requires some sort of federal recourse? Methinks not.

Any new Democratic talking points?

Moreover, the effect on the bill from indigents who don't pay at all is probably less than the underpaying that occurs in the rather large medicaid and medicare pools. Do you contest that this effect is smaller than that of the the non-paying population?

Sure, our medical system is ludicrous, and undoubtedly you could find justifications for a public payer sort of system. But this? Is this the best the left can do?

You might require medical care that you are unable to pay for, and as we are required to treat you that necessitates you paying for insurance (which, as a young, relatively healthy person means subsidizing the birth control and end of life care of everyone else).

Should smokers get a discount? After all, several studies have suggested that dying of lung cancer and emphysema at 55 or 60 is significantly cheaper than dying of heart failure at 80. Bollocks. You want this sort of system and are trying to justify it as 'fair' after the fact.

As to the 'significant increase': as its not an enumerated power, I refer you to: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

Oh wait, the constitution was written by slaveholders, so it has no value. How could I forget? You win by default.
i'm glad you can speak for me, well done. :roll:

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 Post subject: Re: Greece Financial Bailout
PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 7:32 pm 
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Sandler wrote:
thodoks, instead of wasting time telling me why I'm wrong, can you please dedicate 10-15 minutes telling me how capitalism can be reformed (or rolled back) to bring us out of this mess? Every pro capitalist argument seems to be about making things ever easier and cheaper for the job creators. How easy and cheap does it need to be? Tax rates are at historical lows and this is the era of deregulation. Corporations post record profits regularly now. The banking industry made $35B this first quarter. So why isn't it trickling down? There's so much talk of personal responsibity and how it's the people that have failed capitalism instead of the other way around. But shouldn't an economic system work for the people? If the American dream is the idea that hard work pays off, then what does it mean when hard work doesn't pay off? When hard work, and even a college education aren't enough to achieve the American dream, can you really say we've failed capitalism? Or has it failed us? Is it reasonable to blame the gov't or private sector? Or is it reasonable to think that they each react to the rules/effects of the system?

You're the resident expert on economics, thodoks. If you have time, answer me these couple things.

1. Can America ever pay its $15.5T debt, which is currently growing at $1.5T a year while congress argues whether to cut $65B per year (GOP) or lessen the cuts to $35B (Team Blue).

2. If the private sector is unable or unwilling to hire the 13 million people who are out work and willing to work, does the government have any responsibilty to hire them? In other words, how long do we allow high unemployment at a time when public works jobs increase in need? If the answer to this is yes, do we borrow, print, or tax to pay for it?

And finally, if people are priced out of college due to lack of funding at a time of flat wages, how does America remain competitive in the global economy. Even if student loans are not allowed to be discharged in bankruptcy, how big do we allow this bubble to get before it's no longer reasonable to expect re-payment?

Please, just one short paragraph for each question, if you have time. I value your opinion on these matters. And please don't use the capitalism =/= corporatism argument. If capitalism progressed into corporatism, then there's no reason to believe it wouldn't happen again.

I missed this earlier. I will try to respond later.

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 Post subject: Re: Greece Financial Bailout
PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 9:59 pm 
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Sandler wrote:
thodoks, instead of wasting time telling me why I'm wrong, can you please dedicate 10-15 minutes telling me how capitalism can be reformed (or rolled back) to bring us out of this mess? Every pro capitalist argument seems to be about making things ever easier and cheaper for the job creators. How easy and cheap does it need to be?

"Bring us out of this mess" is an empty phrase. I mean, there are any number of policies that will improve any nominal economic measure you want: quantitative easing, negative interest rates, etc, etc. But those kinds of short term measures won't "bring us out of the mess" because the mess isn't the confluence of unhealthy metrics; it's the confluence of an unhealthy determinants. To the extent any of those measures do bring us out of today's mess, they ensure that tomorrow's mess is even larger. The problem is a combination of unsustainable monetary and fiscal policies, excessive public, private, and institutional debt burdens, an undereducated and unhealthy workforce, and an economic paradigm that has reached its limit. Solving those problems will "bring us out of this mess," only it requires that things get much, much worse before they get better.

The central irony of America's economic mess is that it isn't that politicians have suppressed market forces through cumbersome regulations or an excessive tax burden; rather, it's that politicians and economic authorities have for the past half-century reconstituted the economic institutional framework and abetted unsustainable growth. What you're seeing in today's economy is not market failure. It's market normalization, and the fundamental flaw was in adopting and advocating policies that enabled "growth" to get too big to the upside in the first place.

Sandler wrote:
1. Can America ever pay its $15.5T debt, which is currently growing at $1.5T a year while congress argues whether to cut $65B per year (GOP) or lessen the cuts to $35B (Team Blue).

Can we pay the debt? Of course. Can we pay the debt without significant economic contraction? No.

If we cut spending, the debt burden increases in real terms. If Bernanke fails to ease, we'll get a significant economic contraction, also increasing the debt burden in real terms. We could raise taxes, but that will only raise revenues trivially. So what will happen? The Fed will print. Period. There will be selective default on some of those promises (most likely Social Security and Medicare). But the main strategy is to inflate away the debt. This is the playbook. This doesn't happen without a serious spike in the cost of energy and consumer staples though.

Sandler wrote:
2. If the private sector is unable or unwilling to hire the 13 million people who are out work and willing to work, does the government have any responsibilty to hire them? In other words, how long do we allow high unemployment at a time when public works jobs increase in need? If the answer to this is yes, do we borrow, print, or tax to pay for it?

Does the govt bear responsibility in hiring the unemployed? Kind of an irrelevant normative question. What difference does it make if the answer is yes or the answer is no? What matters is can the government hire the unemployed? And again, yes, they can. But it would be economically disastrous.

Sandler wrote:
And finally, if people are priced out of college due to lack of funding at a time of flat wages, how does America remain competitive in the global economy. Even if student loans are not allowed to be discharged in bankruptcy, how big do we allow this bubble to get before it's no longer reasonable to expect re-payment?

Change the tax code. Radically reform higher education finance so as to not price out and indenture a large proportion of 18-22 year olds. Pursue strong dollar policy and let the cost of labor fall to attract investment and increase production. Student loan bubble is already out of hand. Expecting a 22-year old art history major with $80K in non-dischargable debt and few appreciable skills at a time when the paradigm for economic growth in America is returning to a much more skill-intensive model is a pipe dream.

Sandler wrote:
And please don't use the capitalism =/= corporatism argument. If capitalism progressed into corporatism, then there's no reason to believe it wouldn't happen again.

This is like an obese patient saying to his doctor, "Yeah, yeah...Don't use that tired old 'eat less and exercise more' argument on me." Just because you've heard it before and it isn't particularly sexy doesn't mean it isn't appropriate.

Corporatism is not capitalism. Period. Where laws and property rights are consistently enforced (read: fraud is both identified and prosecuted) and businesses/entrepreneurs are made to bear the consequences of their bad decisions (read: firms go bankrupt and moral hazard is minimized), corruption and corporatism is minimized. The failure to abide by these legal constructs is what leads to abuse and a cycle of ever-increasing private influence over public and political affairs. There is no way for capitalism to evolve into corporatism but for lawmakers, regulators, and politicians - that is, agents comprised exclusively of public institutions - to allow themselves to be influenced by private interests. And yes, of course private interests have always and will always want it this way; it's in their interests. The check on this kind of behavior, however, lies solely in the sphere of the public body (and the check on the public body is, of course, the voter. If you continue to vote for politicians who behave in a way that institutionalized corporatism, you will get corporatism. Thus, every single voter is culpable for the devolution of capitalism.). So to the extent this progression would "happen again," it is the fault of the susceptible public official, not the solicitous private individual.

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 Post subject: Re: Greece Financial Bailout
PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:05 pm 
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Thanks for the response. I'll have to think and let it set in a while.

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 Post subject: Re: Greece Financial Bailout
PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:23 pm 
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Doks. What would you propose to radically transform education so that it is more economical?

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 Post subject: Re: Greece Financial Bailout
PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:00 am 
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thodoks wrote:
Sandler wrote:
1. Can America ever pay its $15.5T debt, which is currently growing at $1.5T a year while congress argues whether to cut $65B per year (GOP) or lessen the cuts to $35B (Team Blue).


Can we pay the debt? Of course. Can we pay the debt without significant economic contraction? No.

If we cut spending, the debt burden increases in real terms. If Bernanke fails to ease, we'll get a significant economic contraction, also increasing the debt burden in real terms. We could raise taxes, but that will only raise revenues trivially. So what will happen? The Fed will print. Period. There will be selective default on some of those promises (most likely Social Security and Medicare). But the main strategy is to inflate away the debt. This is the playbook. This doesn't happen without a serious spike in the cost of energy and consumer staples though.


Not being very well educated on this stuff, I don't see another plan that has any chance of working, but it seems like we would have trouble feeding our debt monster (china $$) while simultaneously inflating it away. Why would anyone buy US debt if they know it's going to be inflated away?

Plus, how could the average citizen afford more than a ghetto condo and Ramen noodles if this does happen? Seems like the old voters and riots would counteract any political will to get this done.

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 Post subject: Re: Greece Financial Bailout
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2012 3:35 pm 
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I really like Greece's strategy of "find every way possible to make you WANT us to fail, collapse, and suffer."

http://rt.com/news/golden-dawn-greece-violence-501/


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 Post subject: Re: Greece Financial Bailout
PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2012 3:44 pm 
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McParadigm wrote:
I really like Greece's strategy of "find every way possible to make you WANT us to fail, collapse, and suffer."

http://rt.com/news/golden-dawn-greece-violence-501/



Wonder how many babies will be named Austerity this year.


seriously though, of all the things you can be in this world, why be a Nazi?

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 Post subject: Re: Greece Financial Bailout
PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 3:17 am 
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broken iris wrote:
thodoks wrote:
Sandler wrote:
1. Can America ever pay its $15.5T debt, which is currently growing at $1.5T a year while congress argues whether to cut $65B per year (GOP) or lessen the cuts to $35B (Team Blue).


Can we pay the debt? Of course. Can we pay the debt without significant economic contraction? No.

If we cut spending, the debt burden increases in real terms. If Bernanke fails to ease, we'll get a significant economic contraction, also increasing the debt burden in real terms. We could raise taxes, but that will only raise revenues trivially. So what will happen? The Fed will print. Period. There will be selective default on some of those promises (most likely Social Security and Medicare). But the main strategy is to inflate away the debt. This is the playbook. This doesn't happen without a serious spike in the cost of energy and consumer staples though.


Not being very well educated on this stuff, I don't see another plan that has any chance of working, but it seems like we would have trouble feeding our debt monster (china $$) while simultaneously inflating it away. Why would anyone buy US debt if they know it's going to be inflated away?

Plus, how could the average citizen afford more than a ghetto condo and Ramen noodles if this does happen? Seems like the old voters and riots would counteract any political will to get this done.


I think they have to be looking at getting the *deficit* to a sustainable level, so the debt is simply stable. If you get to a point where there is no deficit, the debt will gradually decrease. They don't need to do that, though, they just need to get to a point where the debt is not growing in real terms. I think the CBO says that something like taxes at 18-19% of GDP and spending at 21-22% of GDP will get us there. Right now we're at something like 15% taxes and 24% spending.

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