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  1. #11
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    I wouldn't spend that much on a single item, but I live in the red-neck rust belt. It might be a reasonable thing to do someplace more urban. But spending money on decent looking clothes, even pricey clothes is a no-brainer if you don't want to be treated like white trash (or whatever group people want to put you in). They probably aren't ever going to see your house and they might not see your car, but they will see how you look and hear how you talk, so that stuff matters.

    You have to be halfway believably like them or they will have trouble seeing you as a human being and the same thing will go for your kids. In my area, that means JC Penney and Shoe Carnival for the kids. You don't have to go brand name on the clothes, but you do on the shoes. At least at the poor schools my kids went to.

    And you don't want to get flashy designer stuff because the elementary teachers here are almost all middle class white women whose husbands and dads do blue collar work or are teachers themselves. They can't afford the flashy stuff and resent when "poor people" have it. You want to be seen as 'deserving poor' not those other people. It sucks, but that's how people are.
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  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaguar View Post
    There's a group conspicuously missing: The born poor who did something about it and are now rich.
    I don't pass judgement on anyone for how they choose to spend their money. I'm not wired that way.
    IMO, the article was written by someone from a background of poverty who ended up becoming rich.
    And good for you, whoop de doo.

    Quote Originally Posted by ceecee View Post
    This is something I couldn't give less of a shit about. I'm quite sure I wouldn't spend $2500 on a handbag but I would spend $2500 on a vacation, a jet ski or some new rims and snow tires for our truck and I'm sure someone somewhere would find that consumption to be on the level of gross too.
    But you wouldn't be spending the money on a status symbol. You'd be spending it on an experience, from what I can see, or something that makes winter driving safer.
    A $2500 handbag isn't really an experience or a safety precaution in the same sense. Spending on status symbols seems to carry an additional level of judgment.

    And I guess this particular sort of judgment is more of a theme among people who have actually experienced poverty.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by tinker683 View Post
    I do not judge people for being poor. I do not judge people for having catastrophes in their lives that are completely unavoidable or for finding themselves in circumstances they can not avoid.

    I do judge people however for consistently making bad choices. Every now and then..we're all human, it can't be helped. Consistently doing the same thing over and ver again and expecting different results? That's just the definition of insanity.

    There is something to be said for the person who chooses to be frugal and spend their money wisely than on those who spends it on stuff they don't really need.
    This is the way I think usually. That was challenged by this piece of writing though ... "unwise" and "unnecessary" status symbols can be something people need because they open up opportunities for social mobility, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stanton Moore View Post
    Being chronically poor effects the brain, so poor decisions are made.
    I can get on board with this, to some degree. At least, I believe longterm poverty can consume brain capacity to a debilitating extent.

  4. #14
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    I think there's stupid, which its alright to hate.

    There's way, way, way more stupid to go around than there should be and its all through every single social economic class.

    Conspicious consumption is one thing, and I dont like it in any social class, it smacks of maximal consumption as opposed to optimal consumption, which is one of my pet peeves/causes but also all sorts of oppressive status symbolism.

    Although when a poor person aims to spend money they dont have to impress people they dont know or like with a hope of many becoming just like them then that's a special kind of stupid reserved to them, which its alright in my view to hate, it'd be the same as hating privileged white guys behaving like wiggers (que that brilliant seen in Gran Torino when Eastwood's character tells the white guy to get lost that no one wants to be his "brother" or something like that) or their own special brands of stupid, like believing their money will buy them everything or that money equals power (maybe it does but there's other sorts of power too, no one lest forget).

    I personally hate that sort of behaviour because there is no sense of living within your means, no pride in who you are rather than what you have. If you are what you have and you lose it or someone takes it away then what are you? So many people think like that and they should wake the fuck up.

    I've worked with so many kids who think like that, its a cultural malaise in the developed world, then they watch a lot of stupid films about hooligans, adopt dress codes of bling and expensive bad taste sports wear and imagine aggression directed at soft targets like weak parents or caring professionals is tough and courageous, like what they've seen on screen, its all phony-balony as fuck. Stupid. And nothing surer it actually keeps you in your place, prevents you ever amounting to anything beyond the confines and boundaries of class, status and wealth which have lasted generations. Even in the unlikely event that pushing drugs or robbing gets the perp some minor wealth they will still be a scum bag, just a scum bag with money, restricted to scumbaggery spending habits and having, being nothing, having something.

    /Rant over. Makes me angry enough to kill.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by senza tema View Post
    This is the way I think usually. That was challenged by this piece of writing though ... "unwise" and "unnecessary" status symbols can be something people need because they open up opportunities for social mobility, etc.


    Nope.

    Its a myth. The idea that with enough money you can "buy yourself a place at the table" is crude and out and out rubbish. A bin man/refuse collector wins the lottery, they are still just a bin man/refuse collector. It will most likely be reflected in their consumer choices and what they imagine the choices of a "wealthy lord" would be, as opposed to what they really would be.

    Billy Connolly, the Scots comedian, satirised this well by suggesting that the uber rich elites and the working proles had more in common that the striving middle classes (v neck pullovers he called them) because at the extremes of the spectrum there isnt any thought for money and status, people are more likely to simply pursue aims without thoughts about that sort of thing. There is, I believe, a sembelence of truth to that, they could be equally concerned with being than having, although they couldnt switch places.

    Social mobility I believe is a myth or a lie and just because there's people really committed to it doesnt make it true, I'm not saying people shouldnt aim to have money, if that's your thing then cool, I'm not ranting about any equally mythological "man" or ruling class either. Although that's different to true social mobility.

    The sad reality is that even if someone does attempt to "buy a place at the table", even beyond conspiscious consumption, and were able to adopt the norms and mores cameleon like of the status group they are aiming to join its highly, highly unlikely that the "guardians" of any said status group would tolerate their admission, because they'd be threatened as fuck by it, people set on maintaining what they have or further social climbing dont want competition. Especially not if it looks like someone is ascending through talent, hard work, charisma or something they personally lack.

  6. #16
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by senza tema View Post
    This is the way I think usually. That was challenged by this piece of writing though ... "unwise" and "unnecessary" status symbols can be something people need because they open up opportunities for social mobility, etc.


    Nope.

    Its a myth. The idea that with enough money you can "buy yourself a place at the table" is crude and out and out rubbish. A bin man/refuse collector wins the lottery, they are still just a bin man/refuse collector. It will most likely be reflected in their consumer choices and what they imagine the choices of a "wealthy lord" would be, as opposed to what they really would be.

    Billy Connolly, the Scots comedian, satirised this well by suggesting that the uber rich elites and the working proles had more in common that the striving middle classes (v neck pullovers he called them) because at the extremes of the spectrum there isnt any thought for money and status, people are more likely to simply pursue aims without thoughts about that sort of thing. There is, I believe, a sembelence of truth to that, they could be equally concerned with being than having, although they couldnt switch places.

    Social mobility I believe is a myth or a lie and just because there's people really committed to it doesnt make it true, I'm not saying people shouldnt aim to have money, if that's your thing then cool, I'm not ranting about any equally mythological "man" or ruling class either. Although that's different to true social mobility.

    The sad reality is that even if someone does attempt to "buy a place at the table", even beyond conspiscious consumption, and were able to adopt the norms and mores cameleon like of the status group they are aiming to join its highly, highly unlikely that the "guardians" of any said status group would tolerate their admission, because they'd be threatened as fuck by it, people set on maintaining what they have or further social climbing dont want competition. Especially not if it looks like someone is ascending through talent, hard work, charisma or something they personally lack.

  7. #17
    LL P. Stewie Beorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    As soon as I read the quoted statement, I wondered why there shouldn't be hate for a rich person spending $2500 on a hand bag and why that wouldn't be illogical and stupid. I know I hate it when a rich person spends $2500 on a hand bag.
    You must hate the working class, too. The luxury sector creates some of the highest paid jobs in both the service industries and skilled trades.

    I guess you just have no interest in a society where working people can aspire to make things of the highest quality and be compensated fairly.

    That being said, to the extent that the value of the item is based on it being a Veblen good and not on its craftsmanship and materials then I do think it's stupid to pay that much.
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  8. #18
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beorn View Post
    You must hate the working class, too. The luxury sector creates some of the highest paid jobs in both the service industries and skilled trades.

    I guess you just have no interest in a society where working people can aspire to make things of the highest quality and be compensated fairly.
    Among the highest paid jobs, eh? So how many people have them? What share of the economy is it? I actually rather dislike that it's amongst the highest paying jobs, but I am not at all surprised. You also get paid more for being a cosmetic surgeon than a general practitioner, and much the same forces are at work. I've mentioned on a number of occasions, and I've mentioned it recently in another thread, that a super wealth person has the power, if they please, to offer more money for some to render them a menial service than they could make rendering the public with a high skilled, technical job.

    That is to say, it is not surprise is a small clique of people can make a great deal of money doing nothing more productive than satisfying the fancy of some super rich people. It does not necessarily say much for the state of the economy, however.

    EDIT: And what country are those luxury designers in, by the way?

    Quote Originally Posted by Beorn View Post
    That being said, to the extent that the value of the item is based on it being a Veblen good and not on its craftsmanship and materials then I do think it's stupid to pay that much.
    If there's any doubt, it has been demonstrated that you can get people to pay more money for clothing of identical make to another by slapping it with a brand.
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  9. #19
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    A fool and his money...

    It doesn't anger me because someone is sitting on a fat commission from the sale of the bag (depending on the fee system in place at the store).

  10. #20
    LL P. Stewie Beorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    Among the highest paid jobs, eh? So how many people have them? What share of the economy is it?
    Why does it matter what share of the economy it is?
    Why would you argue against people creating the most value they can with their own damn hands.


    I actually rather dislike that it's amongst the highest paying jobs, but I am not at all surprised. You also get paid more for being a cosmetic surgeon than a general practitioner, and much the same forces are at work.
    Not really a fair comparison as creating quality pieces of craftsmanship and distorting people's natural appearance isn't really the same thing. Not if you put more value in humans than in objects.


    I've mentioned on a number of occasions, and I've mentioned it recently in another thread, that a super wealth person has the power, if they please, to offer more money for some to render them a menial service than they could make rendering the public with a high skilled, technical job.
    Even though you clarified your intent I would still like to know what exactly you mean in this sentence. I simply don't understand what you're saying.

    That is to say, it is not surprise is a small clique of people can make a great deal of money doing nothing more productive than satisfying the fancy of some super rich people. It does not necessarily say much for the state of the economy, however.
    This is just ignorant and reveals that you think nothing has inherent value. Our museums are filled with things that were made by people doing "nothing more productive than satisfying the fancy of some super rich person."


    EDIT: And what country are those luxury designers in, by the way?
    Mostly not in a America, because we don't give a shit about craftsmanship anymore.



    If there's any doubt, it has been demonstrated that you can get people to pay more money for clothing of identical make to another by slapping it with a brand.
    Yes, this happens. That doesn't mean everyone should just make crap anyway.
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