View Poll Results: Does it matter Millionaire - Billionaire?

Voters
51. You may not vote on this poll
  • No, they're both too wealthy.

    6 11.76%
  • Yes, it's a big difference.

    32 62.75%
  • Don't care, got mine.

    4 7.84%
  • Peanut butter.

    9 17.65%
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Thread: The Wealth Gap

  1. #141
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    Re: The Wealth Gap

    Quote Originally Posted by tacomancer View Post
    Honestly guys, the only thing that bothers me about the ultra rich is their ability to buy legislation and bribe politicians, even if its indirectly and is caused by dependency corruption versus blatant corruption, thus negatively affecting my life or the life of the country. If they were somehow prevented from skewing the balance of political power away from the people, than I would cease to care. (and this is not about whether I may or may not agree with this or that rich person, its about how I think the country works best for everyone).

    This is where the SCOTUS is getting things disastrously wrong and is where existing rulings are quite dangerous to the health of our country, because as things get skewed, people's natural tendencies to want to have a say in the environment around them will seek ever more desperate ways to have that say if they are shut out of the normal political systems. This very thing has destroyed other societies in the past.
    Like everyone else who opposes this, you are attacking the symptom instead of the problem. The problem is that we have people in elected office who are for sale. Change that situation and you fix the problem.
    Our nation has not always lived up to its ideals, yet those ideals have never ceased to guide us. They expose our flaws, and lead us to mend them. We are the beneficiaries of the work of the generations before us and it is each generation's responsibility to continue that work. - Laura Bush

  2. #142
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    The Wealth Gap

    Quote Originally Posted by faithful_servant View Post
    Like everyone else who opposes this, you are attacking the symptom instead of the problem. The problem is that we have people in elected office who are for sale. Change that situation and you fix the problem.
    Yes and human nature is to have a price. We will never elect a group of incorruptible people as a rule. What we can do is steer the corruption towards acceptable ends. If politicians were answerable to the people instead of a small group of people again than we could use this bug as a feature and we cannot do that without rebalancing political power back to the common individual. Right now voting doesn't work because the process that chooses candidates is broken for dependency money

    Ultimately that is the problem and not simply a symptom
    Last edited by tacomancer; 04-09-14 at 11:29 AM.

  3. #143
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    Re: The Wealth Gap

    Quote Originally Posted by tacomancer View Post
    Yes and human nature is to have a price. We will never elect a group of incorruptible people as a rule. What we can do is steer the corruption towards acceptable ends. If politicians were answerable to the people instead of a small group of people again than we could use this bug as a feature and we cannot do that without rebalancing political power back to the common individual. Right now voting doesn't work because the process that chooses candidates is broken for dependency money

    Ultimately that is the problem and not simply a symptom
    There are people who will not be bought for any amount of money. I know quite a few of them personally. But what we've done is allowed the ones who are EAGER to be bought to be the ones getting elected. We need a independent board that assesses the results of campaign contributions on the elected officials. If someone shows that they are providing favors tot those who elected them, the issue is brought to the people's attention. We need more responsibility, not less rights.
    Our nation has not always lived up to its ideals, yet those ideals have never ceased to guide us. They expose our flaws, and lead us to mend them. We are the beneficiaries of the work of the generations before us and it is each generation's responsibility to continue that work. - Laura Bush

  4. #144
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    Re: The Wealth Gap

    Quote Originally Posted by faithful_servant View Post
    There are people who will not be bought for any amount of money. I know quite a few of them personally. But what we've done is allowed the ones who are EAGER to be bought to be the ones getting elected. We need a independent board that assesses the results of campaign contributions on the elected officials. If someone shows that they are providing favors tot those who elected them, the issue is brought to the people's attention. We need more responsibility, not less rights.
    Those people are rare enough that they cannot be a reliable source of politicians. That is not a raw material we have enough in abundance to actually successfully exploit.

    For your board idea, it would be almost immediately politicized and become something awful. Who watches the watchers?

    The scotus ****ed us and closed all avenues for realistic reform and we will reap the consequences unfortunately.

  5. #145
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    Re: The Wealth Gap

    Quote Originally Posted by tacomancer View Post
    Those people are rare enough that they cannot be a reliable source of politicians. That is not a raw material we have enough in abundance to actually successfully exploit.

    For your board idea, it would be almost immediately politicized and become something awful. Who watches the watchers?

    The scotus ****ed us and closed all avenues for realistic reform and we will reap the consequences unfortunately.
    You have an unfortunately low opinion of people. I know a lot of people who would fit the bill. People who are every bit as intelligent and qualified as the "kleptocrats" we currently have in office. Implementing term limits to avoid the motivation to hold onto power would the first step. Then establish a board of retired Fed. judges and top level DOJ personnel drawn randomly from a pool of volunteers to carry out the investigations into the politician's actions. The board would have no authority other than to expose the issues. They wouldn't be kicking someone out of office. Their investigations could reveal blatant criminal actions which would then be investigated by the DOJ/Congress, but they would have no authority other than to show who the problem children are.
    Our nation has not always lived up to its ideals, yet those ideals have never ceased to guide us. They expose our flaws, and lead us to mend them. We are the beneficiaries of the work of the generations before us and it is each generation's responsibility to continue that work. - Laura Bush

  6. #146
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    Re: The Wealth Gap

    Quote Originally Posted by American View Post
    2) Bull****, wealth is not a zero sum games.
    You're a little late to the party bud. Go reread the entire thread.

  7. #147
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    The Wealth Gap

    Quote Originally Posted by faithful_servant View Post
    You have an unfortunately low opinion of people. I know a lot of people who would fit the bill. People who are every bit as intelligent and qualified as the "kleptocrats" we currently have in office. Implementing term limits to avoid the motivation to hold onto power would the first step. Then establish a board of retired Fed. judges and top level DOJ personnel drawn randomly from a pool of volunteers to carry out the investigations into the politician's actions. The board would have no authority other than to expose the issues. They wouldn't be kicking someone out of office. Their investigations could reveal blatant criminal actions which would then be investigated by the DOJ/Congress, but they would have no authority other than to show who the problem children are.
    Are these things always blatant and obvious? yet they happen. If Company A is known to fund candidates who do this or that in regards to this or that law or regulation, there would be pressure for candidates that need money to change stances enforcing the wishes if a few against wishes of many and bypassing national discussions in appropriate policy, which is a harm. There is no obvious money trail but it causes problems and people notice as as a result lose faith in the system as try to find other means to shape their world. It would cause witch hunts and standards creep for political advantage as people try to suss that out.

    And I think I am realistic in my expectations of people. Things devolve to the LCD over time.
    Last edited by tacomancer; 04-09-14 at 11:56 AM.

  8. #148
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    Re: The Wealth Gap

    Quote Originally Posted by tacomancer View Post
    Are these things always blatant and obvious? yet they happen. If Company a one day is known to fund candidates who do this or that in regards to this or that law or regulation, there would be pressure for candidates that need money to change stances enforcing the wishes if a few against wishes of many and bypassing national discussions in appropriate policy. There is no obvious money trail but it causes problems. It would cause witch hunts and standards creep for political advantage as people try to suss that out.
    Hmmm.... Maybe I should go into a little more detail about how this would work.
    Each year, you do a new draw from the pool. The draw establishes a set of teams ("Watchgroups"?) that are randomly assigned elected officials. Each team is tasked with investigating any laws the pols. they are assigned have involved themselves in and they are examined to see if they have undue impact on the major campaign contributors for those pols.

    There's no doubt that there would be some political gamesmanship, but exposing the issues that are driving this can only help things. You might have a politicized group watching someone for a year, but next year, they get a whole new group watching them. The pols. are never sure of who will be watching them and thus can never be confident that there would be a Watchgroup that would have their back. In fact, the possibility that there might be a Watchgroup that would pursue them for political reasons would actually be good thing. If they walk in a level of integrity that leaves them above reproach, they would have nothing to worry about no matter who was watching them.


    BTW - VERY enjoyable discussion.
    Our nation has not always lived up to its ideals, yet those ideals have never ceased to guide us. They expose our flaws, and lead us to mend them. We are the beneficiaries of the work of the generations before us and it is each generation's responsibility to continue that work. - Laura Bush

  9. #149
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    Re: The Wealth Gap

    Quote Originally Posted by PoS View Post
    LOL what do you want me to do? Lead a revolution?
    Not at all. But you can start with not supporting the very thing libertarians should oppose.

    I think the market just needs a few tweaks, namely that the government start butting out of it and eliminate corporate and individual income tax and all regulations for starters. But whatever people earn they ought to keep.
    The wealth concentration is due to the marriage of statism and corporatism. Government patents, absentee land privileges, corporate welfare, etc all play huge roles in this. When you defend that concentration of wealth you are defending a corrupt and non-free system.
    "Men did not make the earth ... it is the value of the improvement only, and not the earth itself, that is individual property... Every proprietor owes to the community a ground rent for the land which he holds." -- Thomas Paine, Agrarian Justice
    http://www.wealthandwant.com/

  10. #150
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    Re: The Wealth Gap

    I usually try to avoid this topic, as it tend to resort to "rich people are evil," or "poor people are lazy," but I think a realistic look is required. The US economy works best when everyone is included and has an equal place at the table. That is not to say everyone should be equal, but that all socioeconomic groups should have the same influence and opportunities at the table. For example, and I know many hate the unions, but bear with me. Before unionization, the economic table was rigged to benefit the wealthy. Why? Because money translates into power and influence. In order to balance this, the lower classes acted collectively in unions or trade groups. Their collective power and money balanced that of the rich and the nation was able to have compromises in which all parties benefit. The wealthy remained wealthy and the Middle Class thrived and the nation was healthy.

    Then we saw the corruption and bad side of unionization. Next we saw the opening of global markets and the portability of labor. This has led to an imbalance once again as the lower classes are no longer able to effectively balance the rich and now ultra rich. CEO pay is now $500 to every $1 earned by an employee, and this system is leading to the ever increasing wealth gap and subsequently the weak economy. Balance is key and only collectively can the Middle Class act to increase their influence over the economy. Only when they do, will the US see a booming economy once again.

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