User Tag List

First 34567 Last

Results 41 to 50 of 75

  1. #41
    Senior Member nottaprettygal's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    MBTI
    INTj
    Posts
    1,641

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    I resent the implication that I didn't have to work hard to get where I am.
    I didn't imply that at all. I've worked hard too, but my personal story doesn't matter in the bigger picture of things.

    Also, there is nothing inherently wrong with inequality when absolute poverty is so incredibly low in the United States.
    That's why people don't use absolute figures to measure poverty.

  2. #42
    not to be trusted miss fortune's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Enneagram
    827 sp/so
    Posts
    20,132

    Default

    you want to talk Brazil? Sorry boy- you slipped up there It seems that you made the fatal mistake of not knowing anything about your opponent in this case Did you even read the link I gave you? Did you realize that we're not fucking talking about other countries here Our Human Poverty Index score is higher than the UK's so it looks like you slipped up there too- look at the range of incomes between the richest 1 percent and poorest 1 percent cross nationally and the difference in the US is greatest.

    As for you- who payed for your college? and who payed for you to take your SATs?

    And anecdotal evidence?!? Economic illiteracy? You're silly I've been following US poverty statistics since I was in high school- I have taken many classes on the issue in Political Science, Sociology (2 of my majors) and Econ (one of my minors) and at one point worked with a professor researching rural poverty in the midwest. I'm sorry if you have such a warped rosy view that you refuse to see what's around you, but I see a lot of people every day who have very few opportunities- children and adults.
    “Oh, we're always alright. You remember that. We happen to other people.” -Terry Pratchett

  3. #43
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    MBTI
    ESFJ
    Posts
    6,946

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by whatever View Post
    you want to talk Brazil? Sorry boy- you slipped up there It seems that you made the fatal mistake of not knowing anything about your opponent in this case Did you even read the link I gave you? Did you realize that we're not fucking talking about other countries here Our Human Poverty Index score is higher than the UK's so it looks like you slipped up there too- look at the range of incomes between the richest 1 percent and poorest 1 percent cross nationally and the difference in the US is greatest.

    As for you- who payed for your college? and who payed for you to take your SATs?

    And anecdotal evidence?!? Economic illiteracy? You're silly I've been following US poverty statistics since I was in high school- I have taken many classes on the issue in Political Science, Sociology (2 of my majors) and Econ (one of my minors) and at one point worked with a professor researching rural poverty in the midwest. I'm sorry if you have such a warped rosy view that you refuse to see what's around you, but I see a lot of people every day who have very few opportunities- children and adults.
    The government paid for the vast majority of my schooling, since I went to state university for the majority of my college career. I have a bunch of loans to pay off now, but I got a large amount of grants for being an arts student (I assume, I got a lot of money each semester) and, since my mom is a drone for a University health system, a tuition contribution from her work. I basically got paid to go to college, but I will have to pay a good portion of that back. My parents' contribution to tuition was only a few hundred dollars per semester. I am already saving up money to get an MBA online once I establish residency in California.

    I also studied Economic History and Sociology at the University of Pennsylvania, and was a Business Minor at Temple (with the Film major), and I've taken Macro, Micro, Foreign Governments, Contract Law, etc. I am not talking out of my ass here. I don't think it's have a rosy view at all. I think that it's a rational appreciation of being really really lucky to be here.

    I will try to include a link to the figures stating the UK poverty rate was higher than United States (I just saw it recently; to your credit, the U.S. was listed just ahead of the UK, and the two countries had higher levels of relative poverty than other post-industrial countries, though the GDP per capita at PPP was much higher in the U.S.).
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  4. #44
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    MBTI
    ESFJ
    Posts
    6,946

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by nottaprettygal View Post
    I didn't imply that at all. I've worked hard too, but my personal story doesn't matter in the bigger picture of things.



    That's why people don't use absolute figures to measure poverty.
    The World Bank and Oxfam do, but it isn't necessary in post-industrial countries where absolute/extreme poverty is almost nonexistent. That is my main point. This is not a poor country by any stretch of the imagination, and the income inequality level isn't that important. The measure that is lacking right now is the bottom quintile in the United States, who, compared to the rest of the country, is not doing well. But pretty much everyone else is, and making the richest people less rich would lower the inequality rate, but wouldn't make the poorest Americans any richer (most likely, it would have the opposite effect). They need to have a better opportunity to get rich, and that is what I meant when I said that I had a comparatively better opportunity (and my rich friends had better opportunities still). That is why I support literacy programs and volunteered at transitional living facilities. Poor education, mental illness, and illiteracy are root causes of people being mired in poverty in a country where it should be far easier for them to succeed than most anywhere else in the world. Sorry about the soapbox there, but I feel strongly about that.
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  5. #45
    Courage is immortality Valiant's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    MBTI
    ENTJ
    Enneagram
    8w7 sx/so
    Socionics
    EIE
    Posts
    3,919

    Default

    Darn, I need to take a huge dump now, this thread seems to have filled me with a lot of bullshit

    Mightier than the tread of marching armies is the power of an idea whose time has come

  6. #46
    Senior Member nottaprettygal's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    MBTI
    INTj
    Posts
    1,641

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    The World Bank and Oxfam do, but it isn't necessary in post-industrial countries where absolute/extreme poverty is almost nonexistent.
    It seemed like you were using an absolute measure to compare poverty between countries, which is not a good way to measure. However, I may have misread your statement.

  7. #47

    Default

    My initial post was very terse. I suppose you can say I am still "duped" by the American dream. For me, it is the dream of an immigrant (being one myself). It is a dream tacitly shared by much of my family and friends when they moved here.

    A dream of a better-life... One where we work and study hard to become a prosperous, contributing member of what we believe to be a rather progressive society. This, I think, was what Haratio Alger wrote about in his stories--not "making it big."

    I like to believe it is the same as it has always been for immigrants for centuries. Most can attain relative prosperity (relative to where they came from) through hard (and somewhat smart) work. A select few can "make it big," and be super-rich (if that's what they want). If this is false, I am happy to be "tricked."

    I don't have any credentials in the area of economics, poli-sci., sociology or the like. But I the think fundamentals are apparent to any member of society.

    Prosperity as a whole (no matter what economic system) can only be improved through productive work. If people in generally work harder, the economy as a whole improves. If new technologies, and new business models, and new conventions make the whole process more efficient, then prosperity as a whole is increased as well. Yes, there are set-back wrong turns, etc., but there is no other way to improve prosperity than to actually do something to improve it. GDP per capita (PPP or otherwise) is a common (admittedly flawed) measure of prosperity. Unfortunately, GDP only measures wealth.

    Perhaps the very rich are the only ones who benefit from this? I think this is a bit extreme as well. Over enough time, I believe that all benefit.

    It also seems to me that the more wealth there is to distribute, and the more people there are to distribute it to, the more disparity in wealth there will be. This tendency seems to just fall out of the laws of chance. Small poor nations are likely to have the least disparity in wealth (all else being equal).

    Is it unfair that some get much wealthier than others for the same amount of work? Yes. But what would happen if we stopped trying every time we got an unfair portion for our work? 2% of a million is better than 50% of nothing. I know many of us are wired not to take that deal, but is it always wise?

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  8. #48
    Senior Member Hirsch63's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    MBTI
    IS??
    Socionics
    InFj
    Posts
    525

    Default

    To be fair, I did ask for comparison of our loose concept of the American Dream with the experience of forum members who may reside in other nations. And there is little doubt in my mind that many of us enjoy a standard of living that could be considered superior to many others. But this country seems to have always held the advantage in our circumstances.

    Perhaps I could refine it...In a geographical location, endowed with such a vast and deep array of natural resources, some individuals decided that they would take the very risky measure of breaking off colonial rule. Was this done because they looked around and felt sorry for their fellow less fortunate countrymen? Or did they see vast opportunities in the seemingly inexhaustible resources and ever swelling populace? Was it a combination of both impulses?

    I do not see a direct comparision with other countries...it is certainly interesting but how relevant? America has been in a fairly unique position strategically throughout it's existence. By sheer advantage of our geography we were long isolated from the sort of sustainable physical attacks that might have stunted the practical growth of our country. Comparisions imply that all political entities have shared the very same opportunities for deveopment that we did at the time of our inception. They certainly have had the intellects but perhaps nothing like the unique convergence of politics, economics and society (and again, geography) that this mechanism called America emerged from. To be clear; I do believe that it is the safest and best mechanism on the planet for achieving unbridled success.

    So a body of law is developed (by whom?) to manage the interests of this vast and bountiful land where it is stipulated that all men are created equal (but not born to that condition?). An implication is developed that any individual can come here and by sheer dint of hard work done within the boundaries of our law may succeed just as ably as anyone in enjoying all the benefits that these great resources have to offer...and further that fair and equal representation is available to secure the interest of all citizens in pursuing their goals (well, property owners anyway...).

    With all that was and is available and all that is implied in the documents of our founding, do you find that you and your ancestors have had fair and unfettered access to the prosperity you understand to be advertised in the American Dream? Do you find the essentially Darwinian nature of capitalism viscerally incompatible with an authentic democracy?

    I certainly appreciate the opinions shared by all of you so far...and the passion. I am happy for those who can find themselves well placed and satisfied in America today...it does work for some...for many of us, perhaps just enough to keep us from demanding an actual fulfillment of all our American Dream promises.

    With one foot we stand on the shoulders of giants, with the other upon the broken bones of millions who came here and worked, risked and fell short of achievement.
    Patriotism is the last refuge to which a scoundrel clings...Steal a little and they throw you in jail, steal a lot and they make you a king

  9. #49
    Senior Member millerm277's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    MBTI
    ISTP
    Posts
    978

    Default

    It also seems to me that the more wealth there is to distribute, and the more people there are to distribute it to, the more disparity in wealth there will be. This tendency seems to just fall out of the laws of chance. Small poor nations are likely to have the least disparity in wealth (all else being equal).

    Is it unfair that some get much wealthier than others for the same amount of work? Yes. But what would happen if we stopped trying every time we got an unfair portion for our work? 2% of a million is better than 50% of nothing. I know many of us are wired not to take that deal, but is it always wise?
    Well put.

    My view is this: If you work hard, while you are not guaranteed anything, there is a 99.9% chance that you will be closer to your goal than if you did nothing.
    I-95%, S-84%, T-89%, P-84%

  10. #50
    Senior Member Hirsch63's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    MBTI
    IS??
    Socionics
    InFj
    Posts
    525

    Default

    We have a new crop of insightful forum members since this thread was initiated and then petered out...anyone care to add their perspectives?
    Patriotism is the last refuge to which a scoundrel clings...Steal a little and they throw you in jail, steal a lot and they make you a king

Similar Threads

  1. is the american dream dead?
    By miss fortune in forum Politics, History, and Current Events
    Replies: 50
    Last Post: 09-15-2017, 10:02 PM
  2. The Collapse of The American Dream Explained in Animation, about capitalism
    By INTP in forum Politics, History, and Current Events
    Replies: 73
    Last Post: 12-17-2012, 09:35 PM
  3. Replies: 17
    Last Post: 08-27-2007, 08:30 PM
  4. Vacation spots to dream of...
    By sdalek in forum The Bonfire
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 04-30-2007, 10:06 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO