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Re: Dow Jones Stock Market 2018

Unread postPosted: Mon 12 Feb 2018, 21:29:02
by Outcast_Searcher
KaiserJeep wrote:As for your "robot tax", it is nonsense. First of all, there are very few machines that justify the name "robot". Dishwashers, washing machines, weed whackers, and powered lawn mowers for example are appliances or tools - but they rendered domestic human servants obsolete. Once you have a good definition of "robot" my engineering brethren will design non-robotic machines that perform the same tasks without the robot tax. It would also be a non-productive and silly thing to do - if a human form robot can do a task better and cheaper, it should. Nor should it be necessary to re-design the machine into a less efficient form to avoid a robot tax.

One man's nonsense is another man's common sense, given the topic at hand.

I'm glad you believe you can see the future so precisely. I'll believe that there are already lots of robots (which I'll include the entire computerized set of things that replaces so many (and more and more) cashiers, not to mention those building things at factories -- already.

I know the income tax is highly progressive. But how do you propose to run things if hardly anyone works, and the rich move almost all the businesses offshore to avoid being taxed?

Magic or wishful thinking?

If you really think you can run an economy with only 20% of people working off of chasing people like Mitt Romney for taxes, good luck like that. I think all his lawyers, accountants, etc. can keep his effective tax rate low enough to prevent that.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Mon 12 Feb 2018, 21:35:52
by diemos
It's always tempting for the elite to declare the problems of the poor are not their problems.

You should ask Marie Antoinette and the Tsar how that worked out for them.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Mon 12 Feb 2018, 22:11:50
by mmasters
Too many people isn't the problem exactly, it's too many low level people. The low level people outnumber the high level people at least 10 to 1 (and that's being generous).

The thing about low level people is they want to live like the high level people.

Add to that too many low level people living in a democracy can lead to a majority that is out of touch with reality and elects people like Obama (a low level person who masquerades as a high level person).

Another factor is common sense, only about 1/3 of the people in the US have it (mostly people that voted for Trump). The rest are lost in ideology.

I think the best thing you can do if you're a high level person is to insulate yourself from the rest of society by making a lot of money (as it's going to get a lot worse out there).

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Mon 12 Feb 2018, 23:12:52
by KaiserJeep
All I have to say about automation is that those jobs which can be done by machines today are already lost. The replacement of humans with machines was the whole topic of the "Obsolete" thread I linked to earlier.

Possibly half of the people employed today are working at jobs that COULD be automated, and most will be in time. But in some industries, capital equipment cycles are long, plus some businesses are themselves obsolete and fading, and never will get automated.

I'm not suggesting I know how to run an economy with 25% employment and 75% unemployment, only that somebody better figure that out soon.

I'm also not sure how the oil peak figures into this. The demand for oil has been pretty steadily averaging about 2.5% annual gain over a long period, driven by population increases and people upgrading to the Middle Class. The decline in conventional oiil fields is higher than that, but we have the shales and the fracked oil making up more and more. The bounds of that are between 9 and 90 years, with the most likely impact around 2050.

But the decline of the Middle Class may well make an oil crash softer and further off. People without cars consume less oil.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Tue 13 Feb 2018, 05:15:07
by JimBof
mmasters wrote:Too many people isn't the problem exactly, it's too many low level people. The low level people outnumber the high level people at least 10 to 1 (and that's being generous).

The thing about low level people is they want to live like the high level people.

Add to that too many low level people living in a democracy can lead to a majority that is out of touch with reality and elects people like Obama (a low level person who masquerades as a high level person).

Another factor is common sense, only about 1/3 of the people in the US have it (mostly people that voted for Trump). The rest are lost in ideology.

I think the best thing you can do if you're a high level person is to insulate yourself from the rest of society by making a lot of money (as it's going to get a lot worse out there).


1/3 of the people have common sense? You are not in Utopia, you are in cloud cuckoo land. Remember this old saying

Common Sense is the rarest commodity in the world.

Trump voters are the smart ones? That is like tossing a coin and expecting it to land on its edge. The alternative was not an improvement.
Australian politics is not much better. We have one party that could not organise an F up in a brothel. The other one is a brothel. I just do not know which is which.
Why would any intelligent person apply for a job and have to work with these turkeys?

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Tue 13 Feb 2018, 05:45:14
by baha
KJ - You are missing the obvious answer...The Matrix.

All these superfluous people can be given a brain to computer interface and put in a box where they are fed intravenously. As their bodies waste away they will be living out their fantasies in a virtual world. If there are too many you just create virtual accidents that kill them off. The robots then take their body and add it to the pot of soylent green.

Smart phones and Facebook have already started this process. People are already living in a dream world and will gladly accept a brain interface. Totally oblivious to the fact that they no longer control their own thoughts. My brother, the computer geek, has already said he wants one.

You better hope I don't get one. Then I will control your thoughts. You will feel the need to go Solar :)

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Tue 13 Feb 2018, 06:55:19
by KaiserJeep
Baha, you have not read my signature, I see. I am network node 2016-933, tertiary adjunct to Unimatrix 001. I was assimilated on April 1, 2016 and upon that date I was the 933rd major network node added in the year 2016. I expressed it in BCD in the signature.

I also have had a solar roof since 2010. My modest overproduction of grid energy offsets all my electrical use and some of the natural gas, since PG&E (Pacific Gas and Electric) sends me a combined electric and gas monthly bill. Since there is a time-of-day variable electric rate here in the Golden State, plus mandated net metering, and I produce grid energy during the prime rate period, I get maximum return for my batteryless grid-attached system.

I also have not filled the tank on my Wrangler since some time in November 2017. I am down below half, and will need to do so soon. However for a few years my personal consumption has been below 100 gallons annually. (The wife still commutes to her job and fills her tank every couple of weeks.) However, now you know why I have not purchased that Tesla EV yet ... the payback period would be over a century, at least until gasoline blows through the $100/g price milestone.

The carrying of cell phones is step 1 in your assimilation. Soon you will be visited by a DNA sampling drone. Then once your cloned components have been grown in the vat, an assimilation crew will partially disassemble your current body and reassemble you in your cyber form.

All cell phone users have been scheduled for assimilation. Some are higher priority than others.
Image

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Tue 13 Feb 2018, 09:15:32
by Tanada
KaiserJeep wrote:I also have not filled the tank on my Wrangler since some time in November 2017. I am down below half, and will need to do so soon. However for a few years my personal consumption has been below 100 gallons annually. (The wife still commutes to her job and fills her tank every couple of weeks.) However, now you know why I have not purchased that Tesla EV yet ... the payback period would be over a century, at least until gasoline blows through the $100/g price milestone.


When you move to the Great White North you will want to be a lot more careful about that. Winter gasoline blends are rather crucial in the depths of winter (it is 7 F wind chill outside right now) and summer blends lack the highly volatile components that make winter starting a simple matter of turning the key. Whenever you get around to actually relocating I recommend you run down your tank level in October to as low as you dare and then only do partial fuel ups until December. By then all the filling stations have run through the last of their summer stock even in the small towns and you can fill all the way up, then keep it topped up in January and February. If you park in a heated garage a pressure cap is mandatory on the tank or else some of the volatile butane will escape and blow away not doing you any good when you need it.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Tue 13 Feb 2018, 10:22:28
by Newfie
KJ,

I think I get where you are coming from above HOWEVER you need to realize that certain topics are EXTREMELY SENSITIVE and it is extremely difficult in this short form written format to assure your posts are not misinterpreted. In short, the allusions to the Nazi Death Camps teeters on, or crosses, the line of sensibility for many folks. Such rhetoric will likely prompt attacks and drag an already sensitive topic far off from where you intended. Just the image will inflame some folks beyond all reason. Such diversions would be in no ones interest and would surely result in hard feeling.

Thanks for listening.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Tue 13 Feb 2018, 10:52:17
by Newfie
I think that this issue, how to use spare time and how to value your personal contributions, could be viewed in a religious/cultural context.

The Indian cast system can be viewed as a solution to the problem. Tanada’s fictional solution apportioned jobs by birth day of week. The cast system apportions jobs by your caste. Ida Pheifer describes how English ladies complained of the hoard of servants they were REQUIRED to hire. She noted that the impression in Europe was that the English were being lavish show-offs by having such large staffs. But when she spoke to the English ladies she found that the cast system insisted one class to set the table, another to cook the food, another to wait and clear the table, and another to wash and fold the table cloths and napkins.

If you look at this like a biologist and ask “What is the usefulness of this adaptation?” the answer that comes out is “To assure each caste has some useful role in society.” This adaptation “evolved” (social evolution) to deal with otherwise superfluous people.

Now take early North America, by contrast. Here the Puritan Work Ethic took hold because there was a dearth of manpower. Everyone had to do his upmost to survive. During the colonial period until industrialization we adapted to this low manpower situation and it became part of our culture.

It is interesting that Ben Franklin, in negotiations with England strenuously argued the colonies would pose no industrial threat to the homeland as long as cheap arable land survived, and it seemed limitless at his time. So he saw industrialization as a means by which displaced farmers could find second rate but acceptable employment.

We are developing subcultures within the USA adapted to low productivity life styles. One could point to urban ghetto lifestyle as such an adaptation.

One way to look at the elite/poor split is to identify the elites as those adapted to the Puritan Work Ethic and the poor as those adapted to the emerging reality of low productivity. This would explain a lot of things such as why poverty is so tenacious.

In this explanation both the Right and Left are clueless and neither group understands the underlying dynamics, or the future. Pushing the hard work solution will frustrate and agitate those adapted to a less prosperous life style without offering a genuine upwards path. The left has a less clear agenda for social/economic improvement that seems to rely upon government largess, which antagonizes both ends of the economic spectrum without offering a credible solution. It just blames TPTB.

I’ve no solution either, just trying to understand the dynamics.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Tue 13 Feb 2018, 11:42:27
by mmasters
JimBof wrote:
mmasters wrote:Too many people isn't the problem exactly, it's too many low level people. The low level people outnumber the high level people at least 10 to 1 (and that's being generous).

The thing about low level people is they want to live like the high level people.

Add to that too many low level people living in a democracy can lead to a majority that is out of touch with reality and elects people like Obama (a low level person who masquerades as a high level person).

Another factor is common sense, only about 1/3 of the people in the US have it (mostly people that voted for Trump). The rest are lost in ideology.

I think the best thing you can do if you're a high level person is to insulate yourself from the rest of society by making a lot of money (as it's going to get a lot worse out there).


1/3 of the people have common sense? You are not in Utopia, you are in cloud cuckoo land. Remember this old saying

Common Sense is the rarest commodity in the world.

Trump voters are the smart ones? That is like tossing a coin and expecting it to land on its edge. The alternative was not an improvement.
Australian politics is not much better. We have one party that could not organise an F up in a brothel. The other one is a brothel. I just do not know which is which.
Why would any intelligent person apply for a job and have to work with these turkeys?


I think at least 1/3 of the people can recognize common sense (Trump has a lot of it). People that have it, maybe it's more like 1 in 10. There doesn't seem to be much correlation between intelligence and common sense though.

I would say happiness is the rarest commodity in the world.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Tue 13 Feb 2018, 11:43:23
by Tanada
Newfie wrote:I think that this issue, how to use spare time and how to value your personal contributions, could be viewed in a religious/cultural context.


You are talking about something I have understood from a young age and that was written about in a fiction context by Greer just last year. People need a purpose in life, even if that purpose makes no sense to an outsider who can not empathize with that person's point of view. Here is how Greer explains it to his audience, in a conversation between an interviewer and the head of Mikkleson Industries.

“I heard some really ugly stories from the Hamptons back in the day,” I said.

“I bet you did. The thing that really made an impression on me at the time, though, is that they didn’t shoot the domestic staff. All the skeletons were up in the family quarters. That told me that it wasn’t just about the money. There was a grudge involved—and if you know how the rich used to treat everyone else in the old Union, you know why.” She sipped more booze. “Rich people only exist because the rest of society tolerates us, you know. Have you ever considered why they do that?”

I shook my head, and she went on. “Part of it’s because we give them a place to anchor their unused dreams. People here daydream about the rich the way that people in Britain follow the doings of their royal family. They’ll put up with the most astonishing things from the people they idolize, the people they allow to get rich and stay rich, so long as the rich keep their side of the deal. I could get by with a quarter of the staff I have here; I could get by without the four-star dinners with a big tip for everyone right down to the dishwashers, the big donations to every charitable cause in sight, the private railroad car with its own full time chef, for God’s sake—but that’s my side of the bargain.”

“It gives everyone else something to dream about,” I guessed.

“Yes, and it also pays one hell of a lot of wages and salaries.”

I took that in.

“They tolerate me because I live out their dreams for them,” Mikkelson said. “They can afford to tolerate me because I don’t let myself become too expensive a luxury, and they want to tolerate me because their sister’s best friend got a hundred-buck tip the last time I had dinner at the restaurant where she waits tables, and their cousin’s husband works in the garden down there for a good wage and a big bonus come Christmas, and a guy they know from high school just got promoted off the shop floor at the Mikkelson factory and is getting a degree in engineering on my nickel.”

“As I recall,” I said, “You get some pretty fair tax benefits from that last one.”

“Of course.” She smiled. “And I lobbied like you wouldn’t believe to get that into the tax code. Partly because I don’t mind being paid to do the right thing, and partly because I knew it would keep my work force happy. Half the reason Mikkelson products are better quality than anybody else’s is that all my people know that if the company wins, they win. There’s a stock ownership plan, bonuses based on the annual profit, plenty of opportunity to move from the shop floor to better-paying jobs. All of it gets me a break on taxes, but it also means that I and all my limited partners do better in the long run, and so do my employees and the union.”

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Tue 13 Feb 2018, 20:17:25
by Newfie
Yes, trickle down. :-D

I think there a number of valid ways to learn look at this issue, some better than others.

I find it facinating to understand human motivations, even if they scare and sometimes disgust me. And since I’m (mostly) human it is a journey in self discovery.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Tue 13 Feb 2018, 21:02:09
by ralfy
Those were rogue nations much earlier.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Fri 16 Feb 2018, 21:47:02
by Tanada
Newfie wrote:Yes, trickle down. :-D

I think there a number of valid ways to learn look at this issue, some better than others.

I find it facinating to understand human motivations, even if they scare and sometimes disgust me. And since I’m (mostly) human it is a journey in self discovery.


You can dismiss it as trickle down as so many who lean even slightly left do, but up until the middle 20th century it was the way of things. Wealthy people hired large staffs and paid well not so much so they could boast about it, but because they understood they had a social obligation to employ as many workers as they reasonably could without impoverishing themselves. In this manner they not only gave back to the community, they also provided themselves insulation so that if times were hard they would have a loyal large staff helping look out for their best interests because it was also in the staffs personal best interest.

I believe you came up with an example of British wealthy living in colonial India who were obligated to employ even more domestic staff than they would have had in the UK. This all developed because people need to feel useful and hiring someone to do a stupid job but paying enough that they can support themselves/family gives those people a purpose. A BMI is just a hand out, it engenders no level of self respect because it is simply charity. You should not be ashamed of accepting charity if you need it to get by, but you should neither be proud of living on the dole. A stupid menial job you do to earn a living is nothing to be ashamed of, and you are at least in theory earning your place in society in the process.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Fri 16 Feb 2018, 23:35:58
by diemos
In Japan the retail staffing levels are astoundingly large compared to the US and it's driven by social solidarity and giving people an opportunity to contribute rather than the US drive to automate or offshore everyone out of a job in the name of maximizing profit.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Sat 17 Feb 2018, 15:00:58
by Newfie
Tanada,

No disagreement.

What does not make sense is pushing automation and then not planning to deal with the newly unemployed population.

There are consequences.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Sat 17 Feb 2018, 19:10:32
by Darian S
A BMI is just a hand out, it engenders no level of self respect because it is simply charity. You should not be ashamed of accepting charity if you need it to get by, but you should neither be proud of living on the dole. A stupid menial job you do to earn a living is nothing to be ashamed of, and you are at least in theory earning your place in society in the process.

Being forced to do a meaningless task to survive, is degrading and insulting. A basic universal income, is no different than a rightfully deserved inheritance. That society tolerates unregulated birth giving rise to individuals with no significant inheritance, no adequate health, no adequate education, no adequate housing or food, etc. is a tragedy that it unethically allows.

The elite did not create anything in most cases, and even in the cases they did it is only the artifice of unethical intellectual property law that stops others from easily reproducing the idea in a free market. Simply being in the right place making a right move and getting lucky in the social game, gives them the ability to gain untold luxuries without any need for effort on their part.

No more fairness to their luxury than a kid in a playground that tricks all the other kids out of all their toys in a silly unfair game. Then we add the rules that new kids to the playground have little or no toys, and most newer toys are given to the rich kids friends and siblings.

Once humanity has full automation there is no need for the rest of the population to perform any physical or mental task to survive. All that is needed is regulation of reproduction to reduce the population and increase the true wealth of all.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Sat 17 Feb 2018, 19:31:16
by Outcast_Searcher
Darian S wrote:Once humanity has full automation there is no need for the rest of the population to perform any physical or mental task to survive. All that is needed is regulation of reproduction to reduce the population and increase the true wealth of all.

1). Good luck getting voters to agree with that. Outside of China (and they recently recanted on their one child policy) that doesn't happen much.

2). Hitler had a program to reduce the population of people he didn't like. That didn't exactly go over well.

3). Wars and disease get rid of lots of people. Those aren't favorably looked upon either.

It's much easier to spout socialist theories and dreams about how poor people deserve wealthy people's money than to make such a system work. It's also easy to claim that the "elite" don't earn their wealth -- so why don't the poor just go get a job with a giant salary tomorrow since it's so easy and takes no work?

I'm actually for a BMI in the US to the poverty line to deal with automation causing too much loss of jobs. That doesn't make the socialist utopian ideals and claims true -- it's more like a practical necessity, unless humanity does a MUCH better job of dealing with growing wealth inequality on the low end, brought about by technological change.

Re: Superfluous people

Unread postPosted: Sat 17 Feb 2018, 20:22:19
by Darian S
It's much easier to spout socialist theories and dreams about how poor people deserve wealthy people's money than to make such a system work. It's also easy to claim that the "elite" don't earn their wealth -- so why don't the poor just go get a job with a giant salary tomorrow since it's so easy and takes no work?


The true elite, hardly are a result of having a high salary. As for high salary jobs, the highest there is mechanisms to ensure there is a barrier to mass entry. A corporation can't have 10,000 CEOs. Many entities have strict admission limits per year, ensuring only a limited number of professionals are added. The academic, time investment, and economic requirements are further increased to the point that it limits how many will attain the required education, licenses, etc.

In the end if you allowed mass entry somehow, it would only devalue the jobs worth, lowering salaries and increasing unemployment due to excess.

In the end it is discrimination based on intelligence, and severe poverty does increase things like likelihood of committing crime, through no fault of their own. We should study the genetics of intelligence, and ensure a minimum threshold is met for all newborns. Giving substandard intellectual ability, is similar in kind to giving disability, to a newborn.

As for population regulation, worsening climate change and ever growing resource requirements cannot continue to increase indefinitely without affecting the workings of society in adverse way.