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Old 09-27-2008, 04:07 PM   #41
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not everyone is too lazy to get a job. some, not all.

but here's the other thing: someone has to do the jobs that dont pay well. we can't all be a CEO of a company. how would society function?? a cheeseburger would be made by highly trained technicians and cost $45 at mcdonalds.

rharris, you found a niche market and high demand. what if there were 100 other people doing exactly what you do? Not so much niche and demand there.

face it, there will always be people who earn less and people who earn more. unless you can find a way to make the cost of living significantly lower, those on the bottom of the scale will be fucked.

oh and lets not forget old people. also fucked. grandma's gonna starve to death.
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Old 09-27-2008, 09:21 PM   #42
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I must say this thread has turned out to be a very good read.

Here's my two cents on the subject:

1) Today's economy is a GLOBAL ECONOMY, which means that your hard earned Dollars are going to end up bailing out European banks as well as Wall Street ones. If I were a US citizen I would demand that my government called on the other developed nations to pay for part of this bailout too.

2) This is indeed partly due to the so called "toxic" mortgages but not only to that. The banks have also been profiting in many other ways only so that upper management can get paid inordinate amounts of money and now the average Joe has to pay for that too.

3) Regulations for the finance sector must be brought up to 21st century standards asap.

4) Lobbying is a sophisticated form of corruption. If the US doesn't put a stop to it, you're not too far from becoming another "Banana Republic" as the one I happen to live in. Your country is drowning in Pork Barrel projects and earmarks pushed by those lobbyists. And by the way, I don't see any lobbyist representing the US citizens. I see that every big corporation, every economic sector and even foreign country spends untold millions a year on lobbyists. Those lobbyists defend those interests (including some from nations such as Saudi Arabia) but not the US public interest. ENOUGH!

Sorry for the rant
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Old 09-27-2008, 09:45 PM   #43
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so in summary we have to take it up the *** for the next however many years till this shitstorm has run its course...trying to bail it out only prolongs the process...
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Old 09-27-2008, 09:53 PM   #44
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$250,000 a year makes them yacht owners?!? It makes them upper middle class! two fiddy a year is a nice comfortable amount of money but you aren't setting the world on fire. It's low end upper class in some area's of the country but middle class in the high rent, primarily coastal area's of the country. Sounds like a ton of money until you buy a house or condo in Manhattan, LA, San Diego, Seattle, etc. There are area's where a 1500' ranch house is nearly a million.

Far from Yacht owners. Nice pleasure boat, but not yacht.

One big reason for the problems now are all the households making 50-60K a year but living like 250K. All my employees over the last several years, making hourly wages, drove nicer cars than me! I had one guy with a whole house full of furniture from the rent-to-own ripoff places. With bad credit he bought a newer suburban that he then spent $2200 on for 20's and lowpro's. Another $800 to do an HID conversion. After 6 months here he quit. Not long after I started getting the garnishment notices.

Lower to lower middle income people seem to think they have to have it all to be happy. New cars, nice house, expensive furniture, etc. All that stuff is nice to have, but it won't make you any happier. That happiness by spending crap is the big American lie that society has bought into. That's a big part of the current problem.

I guarantee our current generation is no happier with all our stuff than the two previous generations that worked hard and spent reasonably. Of course children didn't run the household and were disciplined too, but that's another story.
Lol, $250k per year is not "upper-middle class", it's top of the bell-curve for an emergency-room-physician. Attorneys, not even close. Are you saying that Doctors and Attorneys don't qualify to be in the upper-middle-class?

The middle class do not live in Manhattan. The middle class cannot afford a million dollar one bedroom condo.

I'm not real good at math, so I have to use easy numbers, but if a $250k salary, -50% in tax is 125k a year, divide by 12, = $10,416 a month. Now, it costs about 6 grand a month on a $1mil mortgage, (which should be able to keep you from having to live in a box) that leaves you with only $4500 a month to pay for your car and put food on the table.

If you really want to slum it and find a piece of **** to live in for 350k, with a $2000 mortgage, and allow another $2000 a month for everything else, if you saved the left over (without gaining any interest) then in less than ten years, you could purchase something like this for cash. Or, save for two or three years and finance the rest. I literally grabbed the first listing I could, I'm pretty sure I could find a better deal on a yacht, and a home. And if $2000 a month doesn't pay for your car and groceries, well then, you are probably in favor of the Bail Out Plan anyway.

Basically, what I'm saying is if you make $250 a year and can't afford a yacht, you're doing it wrong. Don't live near the threshold of your means, and you will be fine. It's really that simple.
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Old 09-27-2008, 09:57 PM   #45
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around here anything more than 90k a year is doing pretty good. 250/year is ballin imo (I am poor lol)
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Old 09-28-2008, 04:38 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by y8s View Post
but here's the other thing: someone has to do the jobs that dont pay well. we can't all be a CEO of a company. how would society function?? a cheeseburger would be made by highly trained technicians and cost $45 at mcdonalds.
This is something that bothers me, Though.

Do you know how much it costs McDonalds to sell a cheeseburger? I've read reports from McDonalds Corp. that stated after ALL the bills are paid it costs them bottom line $0.28 for one single with cheese.

What bothers me is I work as an IT contractor for McDonalds Corporation and I make more than the Store Manger does. While my position is a highly technical job, there weren't any degree requirements or certifications to get where I am, just knowing what I know about what I deal with. McDonalds only requires a highschool diploma or GED for their employees granted, but they pay complete dog ****.

If you want to become an Owner/Operator of a McDonalds Franchise you need a bare minimum bank account containing 85% gross profits of that franchise location. Typically thats in excess of a million dollars, and most owner/operartors have > 10 locations. Every upper level corp. management position I've ever met with started out flipping burgers and stayed with the company for 20+ years so theres small possible ways that you can better yourself with the company, but I've yet to meet an Owner/OP who worked their way to Franchisee working the grill.

The recent renovations they're performing for McCafe additions end up costing anywhere from $260,000 - $350,000 which they'll gladly pony up for extra products and promotions to sell, but they still pay absolute bottom dollar to their workers. I've visited well over 3000 stores and have met many many people, some of which are likely doomed to work the grill forever and some are smart hard working people attempting to better themselfs.. Either way, making $5.15/hr working 40 hours a week isn't any way to make a living when the place of business you bust your *** for is banking over a million in profit every year.

I know, thats how it is, but I still think its a little wrong. I digress..
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Old 09-28-2008, 09:22 AM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rafa View Post
1) Today's economy is a GLOBAL ECONOMY, which means that your hard earned Dollars are going to end up bailing out European banks as well as Wall Street ones.
European banks were not stupid enough to get involved to suffer that much. Oh sure, they certainly have some investments in the companies/banks that are in the bailout, but their involvement is inconsequential. What's more, why should we invite the Europeans or anyone else to help us with a problem that is a US problem?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rafa View Post
If I were a US citizen I would demand that my government called on the other developed nations to pay for part of this bailout too.

Why in the world would you consider that a good thing?

The Chinese already have a huge amount of US currency/US investments, and this is not a good thing. It is still entirely possible that we -might- be in a war with them, and if they hold a lot of investments here that would certainly affect how that would play out... The US -should- be solely owned, but as you mentioned, we are part of a world economy. Therefore, there will always be some foreign ownership of the US, but IMO we would be better served if that was kept to a minimum.
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Old 09-28-2008, 09:24 AM   #48
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so in summary we have to take it up the *** for the next however many years till this shitstorm has run its course...trying to bail it out only prolongs the process...

I'm curious; how do you see us 'taking it up the *** for the next few years'? And how do you view the bail out prolonging it?

It seems there are a number here that believe this; how do each of you feel on this point?
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Old 09-28-2008, 12:00 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by fahrvergnugen View Post
I'm curious; how do you see us 'taking it up the *** for the next few years'? And how do you view the bail out prolonging it?

It seems there are a number here that believe this; how do each of you feel on this point?
Well, I think the point he's really trying to make is that those of us who haven't fucked up our finances royally, will be the ones doing the bailing through more taxes.

As far as I know that is business as usual. Still sucks though.

What's the other option though? Let huge companies go bankrupt, let tons of people lose their houses? Sure, that will straighten the economy right out.

Damned if we do damned if we don't.
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Old 09-28-2008, 12:09 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rafa View Post
4) Lobbying is a sophisticated form of corruption. If the US doesn't put a stop to it, you're not too far from becoming another "Banana Republic" as the one I happen to live in. Your country is drowning in Pork Barrel projects and earmarks pushed by those lobbyists. And by the way, I don't see any lobbyist representing the US citizens. I see that every big corporation, every economic sector and even foreign country spends untold millions a year on lobbyists. Those lobbyists defend those interests (including some from nations such as Saudi Arabia) but not the US public interest. ENOUGH!

Sorry for the rant
There are lobbies that represent citizens, but you can imagine they're not funded like those representing big oil.

The deal is, it's unrealistic for a citizen to call up their representative and say with any authority and argue for, say, less corn subsidies. So that's where organizations get formed to become "experts" (in quotes because some are good and some are evil) on a given subject and take the data and arguments to congress. The lobbyists also are there to observe the legislators and gather intel on what's going on on capitol hill.

But like you suggest, most of the lobbyists are not there for the benefit of society as a whole.


oh and for the few of you who posted about obama's tax plan hitting hard on the incomes over 250,000? You represent 1.5% of the population. The people making 25k-100k represent 55% of the population. That's a lot of voters.
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Old 09-28-2008, 12:30 PM   #51
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Some of you guys are saying that rewriting these loans is the answer, or should help reduce foreclosures significantly and I highly disagree.

The banks need to WRITEOFF a big portion of the balance owed, and then can rewrite the mortgage into a fixed rate.

Fact is the actual mortgage payment is not whats driving MOST of these people into foreclosure.
What most people are doing is seeing their home values deflate back to reasonable figures, but their balance still stay the same. Imagine owing 400k to the bank, and your home is now worth 250-300k. They see no REASON to make those payments...

As far as the bailout goes, yes all we be paying the mistakes of some, BUT keep in mind that the current economic situation affects ALL not just some. If your not involved in the housing issue in any way, you are still hurting for other reasons....If nothing is done we all suffer...
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Old 09-28-2008, 12:59 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by tvalenziano View Post
If your not involved in the housing issue in any way, you are still hurting for other reasons....If nothing is done we all suffer...
That is not true at all, many people aren't hurting in the least. It's a matter of opinion if we will all suffer if nothing is done. Please give me some examples of how I will suffer?
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Old 09-28-2008, 01:10 PM   #53
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There is a possibility that the market will collapse. Would that affect you?

Seriously speaking, interest rates could soar, which would have a major affect on everything.
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Old 09-28-2008, 01:14 PM   #54
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That is not true at all, many people aren't hurting in the least. It's a matter of opinion if we will all suffer if nothing is done. Please give me some examples of how I will suffer?
Do you buy commodities?
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Old 09-28-2008, 01:27 PM   #55
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You got me there, a total collapse of the market would be terrible. But I have a hard time believing that will happen. There's many people pulling everything they have out right now, but there's also others that are putting a bunch in right now. At my age, I feel that I will around long enough to see this thing through and when that happens I will make a bunch from this mess. If I don't though, and I end up losing it all, you won't hear me asking any of you guys to bail me out.
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Old 09-28-2008, 03:29 PM   #56
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How about do you buy anything at all? Everything from milk to gas to steel to concrete etc... has gone up in price...

An a total market collapse is very possible man, I don't know where you been but look around...

Finally, yes I believe we'll all see the end of this and a brighter tomm one day...but anyone who thinks that this situation will resolve itself (bailout or not) within a few months, or a couple of years is fooling themselves...

No Bailout = everyone is screwed asap
Bailout = everyone is screwed little by little, which gives a chance for survival....
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Old 09-28-2008, 03:46 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by fahrvergnugen View Post
European banks were not stupid enough to get involved to suffer that much. Oh sure, they certainly have some investments in the companies/banks that are in the bailout, but their involvement is inconsequential. What's more, why should we invite the Europeans or anyone else to help us with a problem that is a US problem?




Why in the world would you consider that a good thing?

The Chinese already have a huge amount of US currency/US investments, and this is not a good thing. It is still entirely possible that we -might- be in a war with them, and if they hold a lot of investments here that would certainly affect how that would play out... The US -should- be solely owned, but as you mentioned, we are part of a world economy. Therefore, there will always be some foreign ownership of the US, but IMO we would be better served if that was kept to a minimum.

fahrvergnugen, I beg to differ with you regarding whether this is a global crisis or just a US local one. Have you ever heard of CDS (credit default swaps)?. Here's a link for your information: http://www.newsweek.com/id/161199.

And about the Chinese holding already many billions of US currency and investments; who do you think is going to end up buying most of the new bonds that are going to be offered to raise those US$700 billion?
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Old 09-28-2008, 04:02 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by y8s View Post
There are lobbies that represent citizens, but you can imagine they're not funded like those representing big oil.

The deal is, it's unrealistic for a citizen to call up their representative and say with any authority and argue for, say, less corn subsidies. So that's where organizations get formed to become "experts" (in quotes because some are good and some are evil) on a given subject and take the data and arguments to congress. The lobbyists also are there to observe the legislators and gather intel on what's going on on capitol hill.

But like you suggest, most of the lobbyists are not there for the benefit of society as a whole.


oh and for the few of you who posted about obama's tax plan hitting hard on the incomes over 250,000? You represent 1.5% of the population. The people making 25k-100k represent 55% of the population. That's a lot of voters.
That's precisely my point Y8S; that system is corrupt. I understand the reasons behind it when it started it but now it's a runaway train and it's going to take your economy down with it. It's time to overhaul it. The rules governing "lobbying" have been relaxed and now you find politicians who lose their local elections going into lobbying. BTW, are you aware that the US spends 16% of GDP on Health care vs 11% for most European nations? Do you know where all the global health care companies make most of their profits? You got it, in the US; in the meantime, you guys don't have a universal health care system covering all your citizens while I, as a European, get my health care card sent to me all the way across the pond even though I don't reside in Spain and haven't lived there for more than 30 years.
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Old 09-29-2008, 12:40 AM   #59
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See here's the thing... a gallon of gas is, say $4.00. That's the same for a guy who makes 250k or a guy who makes 25k. same with food... same with utility costs.

if you look at it that way, the poor are paying a significantly higher percentage of their salary for the bare necessities.

Say you drive 10,000 miles a year which at $4/gallon is like $1600 a year. That's like a month of pay to someone making 25k.

So yeah in a sense it's socialist to subsidize the people who have to pay so much to live, but it's also pretty facist to let them die in the streets (whether their poverty is their fault or not). In other words, the elite propped up by the bodies of the lower class.
You see here is where you miss the point.

1. If you remove the gas tax from the pumps, Gas drops over $1.00 a gallon. However the "people dying in the streets" from poverty probably weren't driving much in the first place (unless you count carjackers.)

2. Wealthier people, who drive less efficient cars do pay more. They pay for the extra gas they use for their Hummers, Ferrari's, Corvettes, etc. Additionally the sales and use taxes collected by their state is considerably higher.

3. Last I checked, the homeless gravitate to the cities. Given that, I suggest they consider public transportation. I would be all for subsidizing public transportation to help the poor, but I draw the line at paying them for being poor.

Mark
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Old 09-29-2008, 12:53 AM   #60
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Little off topic, but along the lines where you guys are going.

But to be the devils advocate

http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?id=...-welfare-state

Economist Jeffrey Sachs pointed out that when comparing developed free-market economies, those that have high rates of taxation and high social welfare spending perform better on most measures of economic performance compared to countries with low rates of taxation and low social outlays. Poverty rates are lower, median income is higher, the budget has larger surpluses, and the trade balance is stronger. (Unemployment however, tends to be higher in those countries.) He concludes that Austrian economist Friedrich von Hayek was wrong when he said that high taxation would be a threat to freedom; but rather, a generous social-welfare state leads to fairness, economic equality, international competitiveness, and strong vibrant democracies.
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