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Old 05-08-2012, 05:42 PM   #41
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Another question is:

Why do people accept and never question the idea that the city gov't should set the price and number of taxis?

Did it never occur to them that it is price-fixing, something that is considered evil when cartels do it?
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:45 PM   #42
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i feel bad for taxi drivers...especially for the ones that cant afford $1,000,000,000 tokens to be able to service large cities like New York.
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:51 PM   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JasonC SBB View Post
Small example:

Why should cities take it upon themselves to fix the price and number of taxis?
They don't.

A very recent and personal example:

Every year, the broadcast industry has a massive trade show in Vegas, put on by the NAB, or National Association of Broadcasters. (No, despite the name, we're not a union and we have very little lobbying capacity.) This show is one of the largest in Vegas in terms of number of attendees, and there is *always* a taxi shortage.

This past year, cab companies in Vegas tried to increase the number of Taxis by a small amount to provide some relief. The drivers themselves (who are unionized) lobbied the city to nix the plan, and they did.

References:

http://www.tvtechnology.com/article/...for-nab/212864
http://www.vegasinc.com/news/2012/ap...nced-denial-m/
http://www.vegasinc.com/news/2012/fe...-cabs-during-/
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:59 PM   #44
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Did it never occur to them that it is price-fixing, something that is considered evil when cartels do it?
Ah, Ninja Edit.

This is actually a good example of what happens when regulatory authority is vested at the state or municipal level, rather than at the Federal level.

This divestment of power, if I recall correctly, is one of the things that you most strongly advocate. And yet the taxi example is an excellent illustration of how it is much easier for corruption and collusion of this nature to occur unnoticed at the smaller scale which one encounters at the municipal level as opposed to the much larger and more visible Federal level.
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Old 05-08-2012, 06:01 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
They don't.

A very recent and personal example:

Every year, the broadcast industry has a massive trade show in Vegas, put on by the NAB, or National Association of Broadcasters. (No, despite the name, we're not a union and we have very little lobbying capacity.) This show is one of the largest in Vegas in terms of number of attendees, and there is *always* a taxi shortage.

This past year, cab companies in Vegas tried to increase the number of Taxis by a small amount to provide some relief. The drivers themselves (who are unionized) lobbied the city to nix the plan, and they did.

References:

http://www.tvtechnology.com/article/...for-nab/212864
http://www.vegasinc.com/news/2012/ap...nced-denial-m/
http://www.vegasinc.com/news/2012/fe...-cabs-during-/
Emphasis mine.

I realize your story was intended to point out that it was the drivers who wanted to erect a barrier to enter the market. Do you realize that your story confirms that the city has indeed taken for itself the power to control the number of taxis?
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Old 05-08-2012, 06:08 PM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
This is actually a good example of what happens when regulatory authority is vested at the state or municipal level, rather than at the Federal level.

This divestment of power, if I recall correctly, is one of the things that you most strongly advocate. And yet the taxi example is an excellent illustration of how it is much easier for corruption and collusion of this nature to occur unnoticed at the smaller scale which one encounters at the municipal level as opposed to the much larger and more visible Federal level.
It is attempted and accomplished at all levels of government. The silver lining to your Las Vegas example is that it doesn't affect me, because I don't live in Las Vegas, nor do I attend trade shows in Las Vegas.
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Old 05-08-2012, 06:12 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgeoffriau View Post
Emphasis mine.

I realize your story was intended to point out that it was the drivers who wanted to erect a barrier to enter the market. Do you realize that your story confirms that the city has indeed taken for itself the power to control the number of taxis?
Exactly. Existing players go to gov't and ask for laws that erect barriers to entry. This is Corporatism. If it were outside of gov't's proper role to do so then they couldn't ask for it.
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Old 05-08-2012, 07:30 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgeoffriau View Post
I realize your story was intended to point out that it was the drivers who wanted to erect a barrier to enter the market. Do you realize that your story confirms that the city has indeed taken for itself the power to control the number of taxis?
Well, yes. I consider it axiomatic. It's a natural byproduct of the unionization of unskilled and semi-skilled workers. It is the unions themselves which persuade the local governments to regulate such things as taxicab medallions- by doing so, they protect themselves from competition.

In cities which have not historically hosted strong labor unions, taxicabs are licensed and regulated in much the same way as restaurants or tattoo parlors- they must pay a licensing fee and undergo inspection, but are otherwise fairly free to operate as they please.


I'd love to hear a viable plan for how to eliminate labor unions on the US altogether.
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Old 05-08-2012, 07:40 PM   #49
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No need to plan anything, they're going extinct.
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Old 05-08-2012, 07:58 PM   #50
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Labor unions will slowly fade and disappear as global competition heats up companies need to cut costs or fail. The unions will have to slowly concede their power or bankrupt their companies. It also doesn't help that the overall attitude towards unions has been declining for years. However price fixing will occur without govt regulation too. It has happened in the past and will happen again without intervention. The big fish can always choke out the little fish.
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Old 05-08-2012, 08:04 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post


I'd love to hear a viable plan for how to eliminate labor unions on the US altogether.
Answer: Become Fascist. Corporatists and the wealthy elite controllers of capital control government and suppress the voice of labor.

That is the plan that seems to be working quite nicely. Union membership as a percentage of the work force is the lowest it’s been in 70 years. Approaching levels it was at during the beginning of the great depression.

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Old 05-08-2012, 08:50 PM   #52
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Here's a good quote from a review of an interesting looking book:
Engineering the Financial Crisis: Systemic Risk and the Failure of Regulation
Amazon Amazon

Quote:
What sets this book apart from the others is the acknowledgement that information failures (i.e. ignorance and uncertainty) lay at the heart of the crisis. Neither the bankers nor the regulators adequately understood the nature or severity of the risks of low quality mortgage-backed securities flowing through the financial system. In hindsight, hardly anyone understood the risks or was willing to short the assertion that real estate values always rise.

But, the authors make an important Hayekian distinction: information failures work very differently among regulators and market participants. While there may be heterogeneous opinions among regulators as to the correct regulations, only one theory gets codified into law. In contrast, discordant theories between market participants lead to competition and a darwinian weeding out of erroneous strategies via profits and losses. Regulations, as codified by the SEC, the Federal Reserve and various other regulatory agencies worked in perverse ways to disable important information from reaching the market and led to unintended catastrophic consequences. In the meantime, bankers did what they always do - they maximized their incomes.
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Old 05-08-2012, 09:27 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by bbundy View Post
Answer: Become Fascist. Corporatists and the wealthy elite controllers of capital control government and suppress the voice of labor.
Yes, what ever will we steelmill and coal mine workers do?
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Old 05-09-2012, 03:48 AM   #54
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Originally Posted by bbundy View Post
Answer: Become Fascist.
Hmm.

By the same token, detonating a nuclear weapon in my garage would nicely solve the spider problem I've been having lately.

It might, however, have certain negative consequences which outweigh the benefits of a spiderless workplace.


Quote:
Originally Posted by bbundy View Post
That is the plan that seems to be working quite nicely. Union membership as a percentage of the work force is the lowest it’s been in 70 years. Approaching levels it was at during the beginning of the great depression.
I do hope that you're right. And I don't have any hard data on this myself. What I do know is that the pimply teenager who used to bag my groceries at Vons (before I switched to Trader Joe's) is a union member, as are the nice folks who teach kindergarden at the school just down the road, the lady who delivers my mail, and so on.

Anybody whose job could reasonably be performed by a robot or a computer program does not deserve to be in a union.

Screenwriters, for crying out loud. People who write television screenplays for a living. They're unionized. So are network news writers, drywall installers, baseball umpires, playwrights, baggage handlers, and the one asѕhole whose job it is to ensure that my crate containing the distribution panel doesn't get offloaded from the truck and delivered to the booth at the convention hall until after the unionized electricians have gone home for the day, and who won't return until five minutes before the unionized riggers go on lunch break the following morning.

(deep breath...)



Quote:
Originally Posted by mgeoffriau View Post
Yes, what ever will we steelmill and coal mine workers do?
Well, that's just it.

A hundred and fifty years ago, labor unions made sense in the US. That was an era in which the only responsibility of the railroad operator was to clear the bodies of dead brakemen off the track, and where steelworkers literally toiled 16 hours a day over an open pit furnace with nothing but a cloth handkerchief for protection.

But then we discovered tort law. And OSHA. And the Civil Rights Act.

Today, no worker in the US is asked to perform under anything resembling the sort of inhuman conditions which spawned the labor union back when their great-great-great grandfathers were dropping dead from silicosis and black lung. But a mighty beast, once created, will defend its existence, even if the greatest injustice that it must combat is whether it is fair for workers to only be allowed a total of 45 minutes per day of on-the-clock time to stand outside, smoke, and make rude gestures at passers-by.













But I digress.
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Old 05-09-2012, 10:02 AM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgeoffriau View Post
Yes, what ever will we steelmill and coal mine workers do?
those 99%ers are so annoying.


joe, some advice:

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Last edited by Braineack; 05-09-2012 at 10:53 AM.
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Old 05-09-2012, 01:11 PM   #56
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Lowest percentage of the labor force going back to the 1930's is our current union level. While I am not a union guy I have to still give them a lot of credit for raising the standard of living for the majority of Americans, even making helping to make it so **** ant jobs can be used as a stepping stone for achieving greater things in pursuit of the American dream.

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Old 05-09-2012, 01:18 PM   #57
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Progress!


now we just gotta keep working at fixing crap like this:



comparing salries of librarians.


Since union members still get paid astronomical amounts of wages, and now all paid by the state...it's no wonder we see places like OH end up like this:

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Last edited by Braineack; 05-09-2012 at 01:29 PM.
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Old 05-10-2012, 07:17 PM   #58
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At the same time union membership has been declining look what has been happening to workers share of the national Income. And Republicans think the solution is eliminate taxes only on the income from sources other than work taking the Ideas implemented with taxes started in the 80’s to the extreme that has proven to be a failed Idea.

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Old 05-10-2012, 10:36 PM   #59
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The reason for that is the skyrocketing exec pay.
And the reason for that, is:

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Old 05-11-2012, 01:45 AM   #60
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Originally Posted by JasonC SBB View Post
The reason for that is the skyrocketing exec pay.
And the reason for that, is:

Jason, most every one of the republicans in congress are willing to make sure congress will do nothing to correct this. And certainly every one that signed up with Grover Norquist. Somehow eliminating loopholes they call a tax increase when it is loopholes for the wealthy. They have all the people convinced on the job creator fallacy. I think even if Ron Paul were elected president this will not change Ron even admitted the first thing was to get rid of capital gains tax but he wouldn’t get rid of income tax because it was too ingrained in our system. Again the problem gets worse.

The way the rules are written stock option compensation for executives at profitable major corporations is basically paid for by tax payers and not from the profits of the company they are supposedly running. Looking at just the corporation I work for it hasn’t had a positive federal income tax bill in the last 6 years. Some of it was depreciation of assets some of it was research tax credits but 40 or 50 million was from writing off cashed out stock options given at a discount rate to executives costing the company essentially nothing just diluting the stock for shareholders. The company gets to write off the value they are eventually sold at and the executives who waited a year to cash them out get to claim them at the long term capital gains rate on their personal income tax.
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