Economy is Real



  • Continuing the discussion from another thread:

    (I'm done trolling, and I'm ready for that other thread to die already. Turns out I far more enjoy discussing economics with yall)

    http://what.thedailywtf.com/t/misandry-is-real/1092/416

    Answering the points that I assume ‘see above’ refers to:

    @M_Adams, post416, topic:1092 said:

    Resources historically have been limited in strict short term temporal scopes.  On the full historical scale, we have more resources per capita now, than ever before.

    @M_Adams said:

    That's just like saying because I privately own my farm, you can't ever own your own farm and be productive…

    If you like, I can grant that the amount of arable land and production per hectare has assumably only increased over time, but the fact remains that there is a real and immediate limit on how much land is available to own in this country and in the world.

    Now, I do understand how important having a title to the relevant land is to someone considering investing in property development and I acknowledge that, try as I might, I doubt I could ever create a better system than the existing one. (My first iteration would be: what if land were taxed such that average property prices remained constant (relative to ???) over time? But that would be a nightmare to bug test, and I'm not cut out for it)

    But the fact remains that If one person were to own all of the land in the world, I doubt anyone could stop them declaring themselves dictator for life. Now consider a situation where a single group of people—capitalists—own all of the land in the world. How different is that, really?

    @M_Adams said:

    I grew up next-to-dirt-poor ( Actually had a floor ).  I now own two cars, more tech than I can shake a stick at, a house, and have a nice retirement nest-egg.  Where was my "denial of market entry"?  Being that poor does, in fact, make me at "late-comer".

    I think that welfare, public schooling, regulations against predatory lending, etc are very important.



  • http://what.thedailywtf.com/t/misandry-is-real/1092/454

    I'm relatively optimistic about the corrective effect that social media could have on the mass media propaganda model.

    And just as the argument can be made that we've never had a pure free market, I would say we've also never had ‘pure’ democracy. Increasing people's control over their government is just as valid as, if not more valid than, decreasing the government's control over the people.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Buddy said:

    If you like, I can grant that the amount of arable land and production per hectare has assumably only increased over time, but the fact remains that there is a real and immediate limit on how much land is available to own in this country and in the world.

    For a substantial proportion of the land in the US, the limiting factor is actually availability of water for irrigation. Mind you, that need not be too big a problem: there are parts of the world with those sorts of constraints in spades and they manage to be very productive (e.g., the Negev) so the constraints in the US are only really coupled to current methods of working and not to the actual resource availability. Changing how things are done to something more efficient is a good economic strategy, one that's served mankind [spoiler]and womankind and trans-gender-person-kind[/spoiler] well for millennia.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Buddy said:

    I'm relatively optimistic about the corrective effect that social media could have on the mass media propaganda model.

    I'm sure I will regret asking, but how exactly do you expect that to work?



  • @antiquarian said:

    I'm sure I will regret asking, but how exactly do you expect that to work?

    "hurr durr television lies newspapers lie vote Ron Paul".


    Filed under: at least that's how it is in my beautiful country, except our Ron Paul is fucking insane



  • Well, I'm sorry to not disappoint you when you were expecting to be disappointed, but it
    s pretty much just baseless optimism. Just a feeling that the faster information can flow, the harder it is to control.



  • @Buddy said:

    I'm relatively optimistic about the corrective effect that social media could have on the mass media propaganda model.

    until the political season heats up then I go full bore to the 'no like' category.

    Filed Under: Paid message board trolls hijacked my thread.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Frank said:

    until the political season heats up then I go full bore to the 'no like' category.

    For a true political board, you have to restyle the “likes” to “hates”. A bit of CSS and you'll have everyone happy.

    Well, you'll have everyone cross, but at each other rather than at you. Bring popcorn.


  • SockDev

    I haven't done the political forum thing in a while, mostly because UK politics is actually fairly dull, but it can be fun to munch some popcorn.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    Yeah; one of the main things wrong with UK politics is the monoculture in the official national politics (and most news media too). The last time it was truly fun was back in 1996–1997.

    I prefer lightly salted popcorn.


  • SockDev

    The hilarity is that they talk about '4 party politics' now that UKIP is any kind of major player but you have four parties that have all largely the same policies where left, right, up, down, or any other place on the political landscape don't actually seem to matter any more.



  • @Buddy said:

    If you like, I can grant that the amount of arable land and production per hectare has assumably only increased over time, but the fact remains that there is a real and immediate limit on how much land is available to own in this country and in the world.

    If the climate scientists are right, we should have Ellesmere Island beach resorts any day now, plus all the islands created from deep-sea volcanism.

    But for all practical purposes today, you're right. Land is a scarce commodity that grows very slowly (if at all), not unlike gold reserves, and is thus subject to the same deflationary pressures.


    Filed under: [In before someone posts a manifesto about the evils of "fiat currency" and a desire to return to the gold standard and/or Buttcoins][1]

  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Groaner said:

    If the climate scientists are right, we should have Ellesmere Island beach resorts any day now

    You realise that that's a claim made by idiots, not actual climate scientists? (I'm not sure which side the idiots are on, but that hardly matters.)
    @Groaner said:
    plus all the islands created from deep-sea volcanism.

    Do you have the slightest idea how much material has to issue forth from one of those things to raise a seamount from the abyssal plain to the sea surface?

    Bah. This part of the argument is already spoiled by total idiocy and ridiculous hyperbole, and you're the one who brought it, @Groaner.

    Climate scientists are predicting a few degrees of rise in global average temperatures. Exact amount unclear because of vast number of non-linear feedback loops, not all of which are known. However, based on study of past conditions, what they see scares them and they suggest that changing the global economy to produce significantly less CO2 (and other greenhouse gases too, especially CH4) would be highly advantageous, and that the sooner we do it, the cheaper and less disruptive it will be.

    Or we can keep going as we are and then the costs when they hit will be much higher.



  • @dkf said:

    changing the global economy to produce significantly less CO2

    Or dumping white trash in the ocean to replace the ice-albedo effect.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Buddy said:

    dumping white trash in the ocean

    Sounds like a winner already, but what will you do with all those trailer parks afterwards?



  • @dkf said:

    You realise that that's a claim made by idiots, not actual climate
    scientists? (I'm not sure which side the idiots are on, but that hardly
    matters.)

    Do you have the slightest idea how much material has to issue forth from one of those things to raise a seamount from the abyssal plain to the sea surface?

    It seems you jumped on the first sentence of my post without focusing on the second, more important point (which you confirmed in your second statement): that available land is like gold reserves - growing very slowly.

    But if you want to talk about climate change (which has already been debated here ad nauseam), I'm not going to take sides beyond the following points:

    • Rising oceans are a Bad Thing (especially given coastal population densities)
    • Species extinction can be a Bad Thing (though some might argue it's natural selection at work)
    • Aggregate shifts in weather patterns a Bad Thing (i.e. increased frequency of hurricanes, typhoons, cyclones, etc.)
    • Our understanding of Things is limited as you say, prediction of the future is difficult, etc.
    • Our economies/infrastructure are built around emitting greenhouse gases, and while it may be in our collective best interest to reduce emissions, they're not going to suddenly turn on a dime to being carbon-free
    • There is very little that you and I can do to change Things on the macroscopic level

    @dkf said:

    Bah. This part of the argument is already spoiled by total idiocy and ridiculous hyperbole, and you're the one who brought it, @Groaner.

    Hey, I'm just trying to pull my weight here.

    @dkf said:

    Sounds like a winner already, but what will you do with all those trailer parks afterwards?

    I think that helps solve the available land problem as stated earlier.



  • There is very little that you and I can do to change Things on the macroscopic level

    Why don't you start by not driving everywhere? Lots of people already don't drive everywhere. They do things like walking or riding bikes. And they don't have to have expensive gym memberships to get their exercise.

    Going to the gym, because you drive everywhere and waste 50 hours of manual labor for every gallon of gasoline you burn, is the epitome of a stupid and extremely wasteful allocation of resources.



  • @Captain said:

    Why don't you start by not driving everywhere? Lots of people already don't drive everywhere. They do things like walking or riding bikes. And they don't have to have expensive gym memberships to get their exercise.

    Going to the gym, because you drive everywhere and waste 50 hours of manual labor for every gallon of gasoline you burn, is the epitome of a stupid and extremely wasteful allocation of resources.

    That would necessitate living in the city. Down there, rent is at least twice what I'm paying now, and actually owning property is a fantastical proposition. Should I significantly reduce my ability to save for retirement (or a day where I don't have to pay rent or a mortgage to live somewhere) just to take one car off the road? What about the millions of other people in the metro area who are in the same predicament?

    I agree that it's silly and wasteful, but this problem was created by planners sixty years ago, and there's no easy solution. Affordable urban housing isn't going to magically sprout up like toadstools, and the housing that does get built is going to be pricey (a new row of townhouses just went up near my office that are selling for upwards of $1,000,000).

    Show me housing that costs as much as I'm paying now (or even marginally more) and that confers none of the sacrifices that come with living in the city (such as being limited by public transportation if you don't own a car and extreme congestion if you do own one), and I'd be interested. I'm not a fan of commuting and I'd love to be able to walk to work, but I don't have that option unless I suddenly start making gobs of money.



  • I agree that it's silly and wasteful, but this problem was created by planners sixty years ago, and there's no easy solution.

    No, this is a problem you made for yourself and for society. You are raising your standard of living by imposing costs on the rest of society. Fantastical costs. And society is not able to continue supporting these costs. Which is why you will soon see gasoline prices rise. In addition to taxes on gasoline. Once you're paying your fair share, you'll see it's no cheaper to live in the suburbs than in the city.

    In the meantime, enjoy our largess.

    Your waste creates toil, not productive work. Everybody has to work hard just to stand still, just because of waste.



  • @Captain said:

    No, this is a problem you made for yourself and for society.

    I don't see how I made it when it has existed long before my time and will likely continue to exist for quite a while. At worst, you might call me and the millions of others less-than-willing accessories.

    @Captain said:

    You are raising your standard of living by imposing costs on the rest of society. Fantastical costs. And society is not able to continue supporting these costs.

    They've supported it since my grandparents were my age. Two generations ain't bad. Granted, it used to be pennies for a gallon of gas, but we've managed to adapt somehow. I'm sorry that the Greatest Generation didn't plan and zone for efficient land use, but I was born a little too late to register my objection.

    Also, I find it fascinating that you equate "taking responsibility for your own financial security through rational life choices" with "raising your standard of living by imposing costs on the rest of society." Does that mean that to be free of sin, I must live paycheck to paycheck, or be in debt? Am I a deadbeat?

    @Captain said:

    Which is why you will soon see gasoline prices rise. In addition to taxes on gasoline. Once you're paying your fair share, you'll see it's no cheaper to live in the suburbs than in the city.

    The response to rising gas prices (and taxes) has been more efficient vehicles. It's gotten to the point that governments are considering alternative methods of revenue collection, since more efficient vehicles means less revenue in the long run.

    And if prices rise, it's because High Priestess Ayn Rand says the free market blah blah rational self-interest blah blah socialism blah. I was going to ask for her opinion specifically on rising fuel costs, but she said she had to go cash a Social Security check.

    If worst comes to worst, I can tighten my belt, suck it up and move downtown with all the hipsters and alcoholic 30-year-old frat boys. But what about the people less fortunate than you or I? They can't afford to live in gentrified cities, and can barely scrape by as is. Are they freeloaders for trying to carve out a half-decent life? How would they live righteously under your standard?

    @Captain said:

    In the meantime, enjoy our largess.

    Sounds tasty. Maybe I'll try it with some mai tais on the sunny beaches at Grise Fiord.

    @Captain said:

    Your waste creates toil, not productive work. Everybody has to work hard just to stand still, just because of waste.

    One man's toil is another's productive work. At least the mechanics and engineers get a paycheck for their time, which they can use to go pay their bills and attempt to live a comfortable life... until they're condemned as freeloaders for not having the desire or means to move into gentrified, congested cities.


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