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The Conservative "Meritocracy" Paradise As It Recently Existed

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posted on May, 23 2015 @ 08:31 PM
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a reply to: undo

That's a whole other ball of wax, but the system cannot prop itself up forever.




posted on May, 23 2015 @ 08:59 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

Why not?

If we are to be honest, all involved in this thread have been involved in countless others that address similar issues. We have all seen the charts showing that the top Corporations pay nothing in taxes - particularly oil companies. In fact many of the most profitable companies in the US not only enjoy tax free status - due to pandering, loopholes, etc.. but they also receive massive amounts of money in grants and perks from the Government.

I used to belabor that point endlessly but lost interest in doing so during the "job creator" era that came after Romney coined ( or made popular ) the phrase and introduced that misconception into our collective lexicon.

How many of us remember Warren Buffet off handedly bragging/complaining that his personal secretary paid more in taxes than he did and pointing out the absurdity of that reality?

This brings us back to the root cause of these problems - and, again, it is not the poor - working or otherwise. It's Oligarchy. It's the fact that a very small minority of the extremely wealthy enjoy political carte blanche in our political system - openly and freely buying laws and law makers and we, as a society, are not doing anything about it.

If those making the real $$$ - not the middle class or even upper middle class - but huge Corporate entities and the eight million, or so, multi-million and billionaires were paying their fair share, just as everyone else does? And the social service system were run with integrity and oversight - without Congress pillaging the funds for whatever war or off-the-books black ops happen to be tempting at any given time? We'd have surplus enough to take care of all of these social issues.

Our society has been duped. "Free", in terms of a market, does not mean "without any regulation, oversight, or consequence". Even in the Code of Hammurabi - the most ancient codification of laws that I am aware of off-hand - there is a section about businessmen and slave owners and the penalties facing them if they abuse their status or underlings.

A "free" market is one where no single party is given preferential treatment or undo advantage. And that we most certainly do NOT have today. Another poster said, more than once, "open your own company then" and I neglected to reply... but the reason that most people do not is simple. Unless you are a niche business, Wal Mart is going to eat you alive - and they are going to do so with advantages you do not have. Bulk buying power, tariff breaks, a work force that is essentially enslaved due to lack of opportunity elsewhere ( once Wal Mart comes to town, mom and pop don't stand a chance ).

The counter argument to that is usually "Well then those Wally world employees should go to college and get PhD's so they can make the big bucks". That opens tons of other cans of worms. From Doctors who currently are up in arms over the fact that, thanks to interest, they cannot afford to repay their student loans all the way down to a much more basic reality - we need a base to the pyramid. So much hatred towards "burger flippers" these days and yet the truth is that without burger flippers, shelf-stockers, clerks, cashiers, waitresses and waiters, etc.... we have no commerce. We have no industry. The bottom level is the basis that all else is built upon.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 09:10 PM
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originally posted by: Hefficide
a reply to: ketsuko

Why not?

If we are to be honest, all involved in this thread have been involved in countless others that address similar issues. We have all seen the charts showing that the top Corporations pay nothing in taxes - particularly oil companies. In fact many of the most profitable companies in the US not only enjoy tax free status - due to pandering, loopholes, etc.. but they also receive massive amounts of money in grants and perks from the Government.

I used to belabor that point endlessly but lost interest in doing so during the "job creator" era that came after Romney coined ( or made popular ) the phrase and introduced that misconception into our collective lexicon.

How many of us remember Warren Buffet off handedly bragging/complaining that his personal secretary paid more in taxes than he did and pointing out the absurdity of that reality?

This brings us back to the root cause of these problems - and, again, it is not the poor - working or otherwise. It's Oligarchy. It's the fact that a very small minority of the extremely wealthy enjoy political carte blanche in our political system - openly and freely buying laws and law makers and we, as a society, are not doing anything about it.

If those making the real $$$ - not the middle class or even upper middle class - but huge Corporate entities and the eight million, or so, multi-million and billionaires were paying their fair share, just as everyone else does? And the social service system were run with integrity and oversight - without Congress pillaging the funds for whatever war or off-the-books black ops happen to be tempting at any given time? We'd have surplus enough to take care of all of these social issues.

Our society has been duped. "Free", in terms of a market, does not mean "without any regulation, oversight, or consequence". Even in the Code of Hammurabi - the most ancient codification of laws that I am aware of off-hand - there is a section about businessmen and slave owners and the penalties facing them if they abuse their status or underlings.

A "free" market is one where no single party is given preferential treatment or undo advantage. And that we most certainly do NOT have today. Another poster said, more than once, "open your own company then" and I neglected to reply... but the reason that most people do not is simple. Unless you are a niche business, Wal Mart is going to eat you alive - and they are going to do so with advantages you do not have. Bulk buying power, tariff breaks, a work force that is essentially enslaved due to lack of opportunity elsewhere ( once Wal Mart comes to town, mom and pop don't stand a chance ).

The counter argument to that is usually "Well then those Wally world employees should go to college and get PhD's so they can make the big bucks". That opens tons of other cans of worms. From Doctors who currently are up in arms over the fact that, thanks to interest, they cannot afford to repay their student loans all the way down to a much more basic reality - we need a base to the pyramid. So much hatred towards "burger flippers" these days and yet the truth is that without burger flippers, shelf-stockers, clerks, cashiers, waitresses and waiters, etc.... we have no commerce. We have no industry. The bottom level is the basis that all else is built upon.




OK, first off, you need tax reform. You cannot just keep raising the tax rates. If the corps are getting out of them now, they'll be getting out of them then and the only ones to suffer will be the rest of us. Guess who didn't pay taxes before Obama raised the rates on them? The big corps. Guess what Obama's argument for raising taxes was? Those corps will pay their fair share. Guess who's still not paying? Those same corps.

So I ask, what is my fair share because the only counter to the arguments you post is "raise taxes! raise taxes! raise taxes!" If it didn't work before, it won't work now. The only thing you do is take more money out of my pocket. We're already over 40% when all liabilities are taken into account, and that's without the hidden taxes on everything.

A free market is what we do not have. I can agree that there needs to be some regulation, but anyone who knows anything about games where rules function like laws knows that the more rules you inject into the system, particularly where you have different rules for different players as we do now, the more room there is for abuse and the harder it is to break into the system. That necessitates heavy de-regulation in order to streamline the system and put all the players back onto even footing.

Don't make the mistake of thinking that de-regulation is no regulation just like so many think that limited government means no government.

You do need a base to the pyramid but the base should be trade jobs more like construction, plumbing, trucking and the like, not simple base service jobs. Those are entry level jobs that used to be where your high school, college kids cut their teeth earning basic job skills and people went to earn and extra buck or two on the side. They were never intended or meant to be career jobs.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 09:11 PM
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originally posted by: ketsuko
a reply to: undo

That's a whole other ball of wax, but the system cannot prop itself up forever.



Not when the wealthy pays so little in taxes and industry not only doesn't pay taxes but gets untold millions in subsidies.

Why not go after the ones that have paid off the government pays little or nothing into the system yet also benefits the most from it?



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 09:29 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

And that is my point. Take Sweden as an example. Taxed at about 40%, just like the American working class. They have free University education, a welfare type system that provides food, housing and money all with little oversight or concern about how the recipient uses the money, free Internet for all ( much faster than ours BTW ) and a plethora of other social benefits.

The difference is that the bulk of their money isn't going towards their uber-rich nor wars.

Somebody will likely come along and say "Well Sweden is smaller...." without understanding the basic concept of ratios.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 09:34 PM
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originally posted by: Hefficide
a reply to: ketsuko

And that is my point. Take Sweden as an example. Taxed at about 40%, just like the American working class. They have free University education, a welfare type system that provides food, housing and money all with little oversight or concern about how the recipient uses the money, free Internet for all ( much faster than ours BTW ) and a plethora of other social benefits.

The difference is that the bulk of their money isn't going towards their uber-rich nor wars.

Somebody will likely come along and say "Well Sweden is smaller...." without understanding the basic concept of ratios.



Sweden also benefits greatly from the militaries of others subsidizing their national defense. Sweden is much more heterogeneous, and the Swedes as a whole have a national buy in and don't tend to take their social safety net for granted. I do understand the concept of ratios.

But Sweden has been showing some cracks between the immigration and the younger generation starting to take things for granted.



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 10:40 PM
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a reply to: Hefficide



all involved in this thread have been involved in countless others that address similar issues.

Wait! I've never been in this mud pit before.

Everything you wrote in this post is dead straight. ATS does rock



posted on May, 23 2015 @ 11:48 PM
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a reply to: pthena


Wait! I've never been in this mud pit before.

Everything you wrote in this post is dead straight. ATS does rock


Lol!!!
Welcome aboard!! Here, you can sit by me while we do this....*pats seat on the bleachers*
I don't come here often, but I've dipped my toes (and my tongue) in from time to time.

*rubs hands together*

You ready??? Let's DO THIS!




posted on May, 24 2015 @ 12:27 AM
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a reply to: BuzzyWigs
Don't tell anybody, but I followed you over here.

I don't know how much I can contribute though. I'm two years behind on current events.

The OP was history, so no problem there. Most I already was familiar with.

And, I've also read Rand, Atlas Shrugged, We the Living, Anthem.

I do need to catch up though.

How about that little utopia at the end of Atlas Shrugged.

Even though I love the heck out of Lady Taggart and Hank Reardon, come on, gold standard? Cabbage standard sounds better to me.
edit on 24-5-2015 by pthena because: (no reason given)

edit on 24-5-2015 by pthena because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 24 2015 @ 12:58 AM
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a reply to: MystikMushroom


It's as if they are addicted to the lottery. These defenders of the elite honestly think that if they support them, they too might have a slice of "the good life" -- just as if they may win the lottery one day.

State Lotteries are another factor that contributes to tax disparity. The poorer you are the larger percentage of your income goes out in taxes. Another is sales taxes. Those are State as opposed to Federal. But still. Some states have no income tax, all sales tax, property tax, and lotteries.



posted on May, 24 2015 @ 01:10 AM
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a reply to: Hefficide



But that does not take away from the truth spoken about the motives and mistakes of the first Jamestown arrivals. It wasn't until their third try that they began to understand that things were not going to be easy -

Plus, wasn't that at the tail end of a very long regional draught? Growing crops at all would have been very difficult, and wildlife for hunting would have been reduced by the drought also. A case of bad timing.



posted on May, 24 2015 @ 01:30 AM
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a reply to: ketsuko



The shaman does not hunt. Rather he gathers medical herbs and plants, but his healing services are valuable enough that his work compensates for his lack of hunting.

Too bad I didn't have you around to show me the ropes.

10 years after I was no longer an Adult Sunday School teacher, I found out that it's often a paid position.

Now I find out that Shamans don't hunt? Crying out loud! I suppose Shamans who aren't herbalists are lazy bums.



posted on May, 24 2015 @ 01:37 AM
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originally posted by: pthena
a reply to: MystikMushroom


It's as if they are addicted to the lottery. These defenders of the elite honestly think that if they support them, they too might have a slice of "the good life" -- just as if they may win the lottery one day.

State Lotteries are another factor that contributes to tax disparity. The poorer you are the larger percentage of your income goes out in taxes. Another is sales taxes. Those are State as opposed to Federal. But still. Some states have no income tax, all sales tax, property tax, and lotteries.


I was using the lottery in a metaphorical context. I have no idea where you are trying to go?

I've heard lotteries called "a tax on the stupid" before...?

It's quite simple, don't waste your money by purchasing lottery tickets. I'm sure rich people don't buy lottery tickets, despite their desire for increased wealth.



posted on May, 24 2015 @ 01:38 AM
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originally posted by: pthena
a reply to: ketsuko



The shaman does not hunt. Rather he gathers medical herbs and plants, but his healing services are valuable enough that his work compensates for his lack of hunting.

Too bad I didn't have you around to show me the ropes.

10 years after I was no longer an Adult Sunday School teacher, I found out that it's often a paid position.

Now I find out that Shamans don't hunt? Crying out loud! I suppose Shamans who aren't herbalists are lazy bums.


They have Sunday school for adults?

Isn't that usually called a Bible study group?



posted on May, 24 2015 @ 01:44 AM
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a reply to: MystikMushroom


I'm sure rich people don't buy lottery tickets, despite their desire for increased wealth.

Oh! oh oh!! But - wait!! One of my good friends works at a lottery dispensary (and liquor store)......she knows how the lottery works. She's told me about how bejillionaires will actually buy AN ENTIRE ROLL of the tickets that normal consumers purchase one or two or three at a time. They KNOW that the "roll" of tickets has a value of more than the cost to buy them as a roll (in bulk). And YES, they DO take advantage of that......

hence so many of us commoners buy them and are delighted with a "Free Ticket" or a "$10" winner.....

Make no mistake, the rich are ALSO taking advantage of their ability to monopolize entire hundreds-of-tickets rolls, and they KNOW they will make a great profit.
It's sickening. Sincerely.



posted on May, 24 2015 @ 02:19 AM
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originally posted by: Hefficide
a reply to: burdman30ott6
The workers did cause disruptions - after they were evicted from their homes with no notice among other insults. The disruptions were their attempt to make a stand to protect what was theirs. Of all people judging that, I would expect you not to be on the list - after all, you would protect you and yours with any and all force you could muster. We both know this.

Are those workers any less entitled to the same? Are they beneath you?


My point on labor issues has always been this: If I can't afford to feed my family on whatever wages are being paid, I sure as hell couldn't afford to do so during a strike. If I was a laborer, I'd be a strike breaker in that situation.

I do judge union workers who physically try to block or abuse workers who can't afford to walk off of their job. That's NOT something I would do. I'd absolutely lie, cheat, steal, kill whatever it took to feed and provide for my family... but I wouldn't play the victim card if and when I was put down by Johnny Law for it. That just seems like somebody with their head in the clouds.



posted on May, 24 2015 @ 02:40 AM
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a reply to: burdman30ott6

The concept of collective good seems to be something you miss Burd. The reason that these people were striking in the first place was that NONE of them were making enough to have a life worth living nor to provide. They had no labor laws to protect them, meaning their work day could be 20 hours if the bosses wanted. Due to the nature of the job they had no option but to live in the company "town" - in housing owned by the company. They had to shop at the company store - where prices and selection was decided by the company. The company controlled everything and company greed led to a situation where the overworked laborers were living in abject poverty - many falling into free labor because their "rent" and bill at the company store exceeded their current income.

It's not like things were fine and dandy and a few spoiled rotten punks decided that they had to have more and screwed up paradise for the rest of the group. Nobody lower than overseer or foreman had any sort of life worth living and even quitting and leaving was not an option for many as they were in debt to the company store.

Look up some historical pricing of items during this period and you'll be shocked. These guys were making pennies but often had to pay higher prices, for healthy food particularly, than we do TODAY.

I realize that modern propaganda focuses upon the mafia based unions, particularly the ones that destroyed the auto industry and then paints them all, from any period, in the same light. But that just doesn't work. These railroad workers went on strike not out of greed - but out of necessity, only wanting the simple things like decent food and clothing for their families.

Given those truths - would you still break the picket line even if YOU were in the same boat, watching you and your family slowly dying, suffering, and starving all while you were working your ass off?

Hell no you wouldn't man. You'd probably be one of the people organizing the strike in the first place.



posted on May, 24 2015 @ 02:45 AM
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a reply to: pthena

History books actually leave out a lot about the first Jamestown expedition due to ugly light it portrays First Peoples in. One of the big "mysteries" is what happened to many of the colonists - even though local Aboriginal culture is very clear that those poor souls were taken away from the coast and welcomed as members of local tribes.

Years later explorers were dumbfounded upon meeting blue eyed Natives and have been debating for years over how that could be. The simple answer is that these were the descendants of those who disappeared from Jamestown. This is bolstered by the fact that blue eyes are a genetic trait not found in the America's.

But history is written by the victors, so it's all left out.



posted on May, 24 2015 @ 02:48 AM
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a reply to: Hefficide

We've had this discussion before, my friend. I'm pretty far from the collectivist side of the scale. I struggle to empathetically view these scenarios precisely because I don't believe I'd allow myself to get to the point where I'm leaning on some mass force of threats and obstructive group-think outside of my personal control.

Bottom line which was missed from my earlier post: The military wasn't called in to defend the corporation, it was called in because the US mail service trains were being disrupted. That's a federal violation which will always, without fail, see federal forces called in to deal with the problem.



posted on May, 24 2015 @ 02:54 AM
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a reply to: burdman30ott6

In this case the President did not mention mail, as I recollect, in his reasoning. He simply stated that the strike was not good for the Nation. But I could be off base. I've read a ton in the past few days and it does blend a bit.

However, I can easily provide several other examples of Military strike busting where no mail was inhibited or delayed. It was the "norm" for at least a few decades.



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