Comment re. minimum wage

To “mrtapeguy” at Scott’s blog, thanks for your response.

Some quick thoughts…

[1] Without laws against murder, we could not have a civilized society. Likewise, without laws regarding minimum wage, we would not have a U.S. economy, since workers would not be able to afford bus fare, let alone pay for rent, food, etc.

High unemployment (caused by neoliberalism) sustains a surplus of labor, such that without minimum wage laws, desperate workers would undercut each other until they were willing to toil for 10 cents an hour or less.  Federal laws ensure a nationwide rock bottom that (in theory anyway) no employer can long get away with violating. Even though 10,000 people apply for each job at McDonald’s, there is a legal limit to how badly workers can be exploited.

You say, “The market sets wages.” Yes. Just as “the market” set the “wages” of plantation slaves.

[2]“mrtapeguy” writes, “No one is obligated to work for less than they feel they deserve at any place that isn’t willing to pay them.”

I disagree. People are obligated by circumstances such as their need to eat. In your fantasy, “No one is obligated.” In my fantasy, humans care for each other to a minimal extent.

[3] With all due respect, your comments about government spending are too erroneous and self-contradictory to merit a response. (You don’t want the government to be an employer, and yet you do, via WPA-style programs.) The U.S. government creates its spending money out of thin air, simply by changing the numbers in bank accounts. Hence the U.S. government has no need or use for tax revenue (unlike state and local governments). People who do not understand this do not understand economics. No one rich or poor should have to pay federal taxes. (State and local taxes are a different matter.)

[4] I am confused by your comment regarding Universal Medicare. You seem to both favor it and oppose it.

Thanks for visiting and commenting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

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17 thoughts on “Comment re. minimum wage

  1. “Without laws against murder, we could not have a civilized society. Likewise, without laws regarding minimum wage, we would not have a U.S. economy, since workers would not be able to afford bus fare, let alone pay for rent, food, etc.”

    False equivalency. Murder is a violation of individual rights. No one has the right to take your life without your permission. On the other hand, working is a voluntary contract between the worker and the employer.

    “High unemployment (caused by neoliberalism) sustains a surplus of labor, such that without minimum wage laws, desperate workers would undercut each other until they were willing to toil for 10 cents an hour or less. Federal laws ensure a nationwide rock bottom that (in theory anyway) no employer can long get away with violating. Even though 10,000 people apply for each job at McDonald’s, there is a legal limit to how badly workers can be exploited.”

    There are many causes of unemployment. The economy is largely cyclical but it certainly isn’t caused by “neoliberalism.” I suggest some basic economics theory starting with, you know…supply and demand?

    “You say, “The market sets wages.” Yes. Just as “the market” set the “wages” of plantation slaves.”

    The market didn’t set wages. Slave wages were set by a racist populace who didn’t recognize the rights of slaves to the same individual rights they gave everyone else. Further, no one is talking about an essentially undemocratic economy where 100% of the power is in the hands of an oligarchy and the workers have no recognized rights and NO laws to protect them or the ability to pursue restitution. It’s not a black-and-white scenario that radical progressives like to portray: if you believe in the free market then you must believe there should be no laws except to protect fat cats, which is absurd.

    “People are obligated by circumstances such as their need to eat. In your fantasy, “No one is obligated.” In my fantasy, humans care for each other to a minimal extent.”

    There are compelling circumstances in which people take jobs that perhaps don’t pay enough. That doesn’t mean they have no ability to train, earn more, move or see other opportunities. Again, it is not a black-and-white scenario.

    “With all due respect, your comments about government spending are too erroneous and self-contradictory to merit a response. (You don’t want the government to be an employer, and yet you do, via WPA-style programs.)”

    To review, I said the government should not be a defacto employer because it simply creates more debt. I also said if we are already spending money on entitlements such as the safety net, i would rather see those people put to work or receive job training. Capeche?

    “The U.S. government creates its spending money out of thin air, simply by changing the numbers in bank accounts. Hence the U.S. government has no need or use for tax revenue (unlike state and local governments). People who do not understand this do not understand economics. No one rich or poor should have to pay federal taxes. (State and local taxes are a different matter.)”

    I completely understand how money is created since we abandoned the gold standard. However, that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to create money out of thin air in order to fund the federal government. To what end? The Fed should be ended and we should operate the federal govt, as any other, based on real money

    [4] I am confused by your comment regarding Universal Medicare. You seem to both favor it and oppose it.

    I do not think universal Medicare is the best idea and it is not the most popular or successful form of universal healthcare. It works decently in some countries (Australia) but I have little faith in our government to administer it well and prefer other systems such as Switzerland. Regardless of what system we choose, if we don’t address why the cost of care is so high in this country, it doesn’t matter what direction we go.

    I will be addressing necessary market reforms next week but I’ve also researched systems that work and those that don’t. All things need to be considered – that’s how they make decisions before pursuing the best strategy in the evil private sector you hate so much.

    https://ivn.us/2017/03/28/10-reasons-why-fiscal-conservatives-should-reconsider-universal-healthcare/

    “Thanks for visiting and commenting.”

    You’re welcome.

    Like

  2. Thanks for your comments. Some responses if I may…

    [1] You write, “False equivalency. Murder is a violation of individual rights. No one has the right to take your life without your permission. On the other hand, working is a voluntary contract between the worker and the employer.”

    The “rights” you speak of are provided by laws and regulations. Everything in the universe from the whirling of electrons to the orbit of galaxies needs regulations in order to function. When the body’s regulatory systems break down, we become ill. When society’s laws break down, we have anarchy. When your car’s regulatory systems malfunction, your car self-destructs. Minimum wage laws are necessary regulations. Deregulation and decriminalization often leads to disaster, e.g. the 2008 debacle on Wall Street.

    [2] With respect, your claim that neoliberalism has nothing to do with unemployment is too erroneous to address. Neoliberalism means mass privatization, gratuitous austerity, profits over people, and a feudal condition in which a handful of oligarchs own everything and everyone. This is where your logic leads to.

    [3] You write, “The market didn’t set (plantation) wages. Slave wages were set by a racist populace who didn’t recognize the rights of slaves to the same individual rights they gave everyone else.”

    The “market” is a manifestation of society at any given time. The plantation system was part of an overall economy, and the economy included markets. Since you worship the unregulated “market,” racism would be just fine if the “market” blessed it, yes?

    [4] You write, “If you believe in the free market then you must believe there should be no laws except to protect fat cats, which is absurd.”

    I believe in the free market, provided there are laws and regulations to keep it free. Likewise I believe in free strategies on a football field, provided there are rules that allow the game to exist in the first place.

    However today’s “free markets” are not free. To varying extents the various markets are rigged, manipulated, dominated by monopolies, and subject to the edicts of politicians who are owned by the rich.

    Thank you for visiting. 🙂

    Like

    1. Thanks for your comments. Some responses if I may…

      “The “rights” you speak of are provided by laws and regulations. Everything in the universe from the whirling of electrons to the orbit of galaxies needs regulations in order to function. When the body’s regulatory systems break down, we become ill. When society’s laws break down, we have anarchy. When your car’s regulatory systems malfunction, your car self-destructs. Minimum wage laws are necessary regulations. Deregulation and decriminalization often leads to disaster, e.g. the 2008 debacle on Wall Street.”

      Well I don’t agree that rights are provided by laws. Some believe rights are endowed by our creator or if you prefer, are inherent to our being. Regulations and laws are designed (or should be) to protect them. Our laws simply reflect that – they don’t PROVIDE them. But I am not an anarchist. I believe in the rule of law. The question is where do laws and regulations change from protection of our individual rights and private property to becoming the nanny state and having too many unintended consequences? There are many examples of this and people don’t agree on where the line is to be drawn.

      And the recession was caused by many thing but consider that with the line between banks and investment firms blurred, what Wall Street did was gamble with other people’s money. That should never be OK because it isn’t their money – period.

      “With respect, your claim that neoliberalism has nothing to do with unemployment is too erroneous to address. Neoliberalism means mass privatization, gratuitous austerity, profits over people, and a feudal condition in which a handful of oligarchs own everything and everyone. That is where your fantasy leads to.”

      So is the claim that it does. I am a classical liberal with a shot of pragmatist but independent. I am not an ideologue. That means free markets and the rule of law. It does not mean a free-for-all and oligarchs owning everything. The idea that anyone who believes in the free market supports the kind of dark “neoliberal” hell you envision is not supported by fact or anyone credible, for that matter. People disagree on what level of government should be involved in everything from banks to bathrooms. No one believes in what you describe.

      “The “market” is a manifestation of society at any given time. The plantation system was part of an overall economy, and the economy included markets. Since you worship the unregulated “market,” racism would be just fine if the “market” blessed it, yes?’

      The “market” refers to a free market, not whatever market happens to be in place at the time. That was clearly not a free market, since the slaves were not free to collect wages of their own choosing or start their own businesses or even get an education. And, respectfully, it is complete horse manure to claim I “worship the unregulated market.” I’ve never given any indication of such and no one credible does. You don’t understand how the term “market” is used. You might as well claim it’s the grocery store.

      “I believe in the free market, provided there are laws and regulations to keep it free. Likewise I believe in free strategies on a football field, provided there are rules that allow the game to exist in the first place.”

      I agree, however chances are we disagree on what level of government is needed to keep it free.

      “However today’s “free markets” are not free. To varying extents the various markets are rigged, manipulated, dominated by monopolies, and subject to the edicts of politicians who are owned by the rich.”

      Yes, but also by corrupt unions and other special interests, for example, which peddle votes to politicians who give them unsustainable contracts with defined benefits at taxpayer expense and bankrupt municipalities. The difference is they do it with money not given voluntarily. Both are a problem, which is why I believe in free markets that do not cater to ANY special interests. A social floor of some kind? Yes – but the rest is too prone to the kind of manipulation you mentioned.

      Cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. [1] You write, “I don’t agree that rights are provided by laws…”

        Fine, but we still need laws and regulations to protect the rights that are “given” by God or extraterrestrials, or whatever. In truth, we humans create rights by declaring them, and by protecting them via laws.

        [2] You write, “The ‘market’ refers to a free market, not whatever market happens to be in place at the time. You don’t understand how the term ‘market’ is used. You might as well claim it’s the grocery store.”

        You did not define that before. In any case, a genuinely “free market” is (unfortunately) rare, at least on some levels of society. Do you think the stock market is genuinely free with no rigging or manipulation? Incidentally you are in an error to think that just because I do not agree with your definition of something, I do not understand that something.

        [3] You write, “I believe in free markets that do not cater to ANY special interests.”

        I believe in free markets too, but human nature being what it is, we need laws and regulations to keep the markets going. Today there has been too much deregulation (in my opinion).

        Like

  3. I did not see the entirety of your comment the first time. It didn’t show up, and I don’t know why. Strange.

    Anyway, if I may continue…

    [1] You write, “I said the government should not be a defacto employer because it simply creates more debt.”

    The U.S. government does not borrow one penny of its spending money from anyone. Therefore the government incurs no debt from spending. This is the main theme of this entire blog. The so-called “national debt” is simply money that investors have deposited in Fed savings accounts. Such accounts are automatically opened for you when you buy T-securities. It’s just like buying a CD at a regular bank. Money deposited in Fed savings accounts is separate from (and has nothing to do with) the U.S. government’s ability to create money out of thin air.

    What’s killing us is private debt (e.g. student loan debt). By contrast, the public debt (“national debt”) is trivial and irrelevant. The U.S. government could instantly “pay it off” at any time, simply by transferring money that is deposited in Fed savings accounts over to the checking accounts of T-security holders. Nothing physical would move, since money is not physical, just as points on a sports scoreboard are not physical.

    This deposited money is called a “debt” because it is lent to the Fed. However the money is also an asset for the Fed. Likewise, money deposited in regular banks is both a debt and an asset. It is lent to the bank, and it must be surrendered to the depositor upon demand. As long as the money is in the bank, it serves as an asset.

    The federal money-well is bottomless and inexhaustible. It is infinite, just like points on a scoreboard. However pundits, professors, and politicians whine about the fake “national debt crisis” in order to make you grovel for every drop.

    [2] You write, “I completely understand how money is created since we abandoned the gold standard. However, that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to create money out of thin air in order to fund the federal government. To what end? The Fed should be ended and we should operate the federal govt, as any other, based on real money.”

    To what end, you ask? The U.S. government creates about $4 trillion out of thin air each fiscal year (and taxes back 95% of it). Without that federal money, all U.S. dollars would come into existence in the form of bank loans. Loan dollars from banks, like spending dollars from the federal government, are created out of thin air. (Fractional reserve banking is a myth.) If all dollars existed as loans only, the debt load would utterly cripple the USA in a matter of days.

    As for the Fed, I agree that it is evil, since the Fed serves Wall Street at the expense of Main Street, but other than that, the Fed is the U.S. government’s bank. It is necessary. All money exists only in banks. (Coins and currency notes represent money, and can be used as money, but strictly speaking they are not money.) However this does not mean than al money in banks is loan money. Moreover, contrary to a popular myth, the U.S. government does not – repeat NOT – borrow its spending money from the Fed (or from China, or anyone else).

    [3] You write, “I do not think universal Medicare is the best idea and it is not the most popular or successful form of universal healthcare. It works decently in some countries (Australia) but I have little faith in our government to administer it well and prefer other systems such as Switzerland. Regardless of what system we choose, if we don’t address why the cost of care is so high in this country, it doesn’t matter what direction we go.”

    The U.S. government adequately administers Medicaid, Medicare, and Social Security. Wy not make Medicare universal, as it is in all other developed countries?

    Regarding health care costs, with Universal Medicare the government could negotiate these costs, as occurs in al other developed nations. A certain amount is paid for certain procedures and certain drugs. Period.

    Plus we could retain a private option for people who wanted it. The following link explains how and why this would work… https://mythfighter.com/2017/03/29/objections-to-medicare-for-all-and-the-first-necessary-step/

    Like

  4. You provided a link to an article.
    https://ivn.us/2017/03/28/10-reasons-why-fiscal-conservatives-should-reconsider-universal-healthcare/

    Some responses to it…

    [1] What does the article mean by “fiscally responsible” in the context of the federal government? Does it mean the U.S. government “can’t spend money it doesn’t have,” or that the government needs a balanced budget?

    You and I must be fiscally responsible. We must budget our money. If our expenditures exceed our income, then we will be in trouble. Same with city, county, and state governments. Not so with the federal government, which creates its spending money out of thin air, simply by crediting bank accounts. The U.S. government creates about $4 trillion each fiscal year, which, in hundred-dollar bills, would weigh 22,000 TONS (not pounds). Of course, most of that $4 trillion is not physical. (Strictly speaking, no money is physical.)

    Bill Clinton ran a federal surplus for four years. The result was a recession. The economy’s surplus is the U.S. government’s deficit. The U.S. government’s deficit is the economy’s surplus.

    When right-wingers speak of the federal government being “fiscally responsible,” they mean less spending for average people, and more spending for the rich, and for weapons makers and so on.

    [2] The article says, “Ultimately, what matters most is what works.”

    What works for WHO? For the rich, or for everyone? Privatized health insurance works mainly for the rich. It is very “successful” for the rich, just as gratuitous austerity works beautifully for the rich. By contrast, Universal Medicare works for everyone.

    [3] The article says, “Let’s be clear: contrary to the claims of some, healthcare and anything else that must be provided by someone else is NOT a right.”

    That is a 100% subjective opinion, and an arbitrary judgment. I reject it.

    [4] The article says, “My answer to these challenges is that I am a scientist trained to look at what works.”

    For the rich, and for right-wingers, a system “works” if it widens the gap between the rich and the rest. A system “does not work” if it narrows the gap. This (for right-wingers) is “scientific.”

    For “scientific” right-wingers, “big government” is whatever narrows the gap between the rich and the rest. “Small and efficient government” is whatever widens the gap. Such theft and immorality is justified by right-wing “science.”

    For “scientific” right-wingers, “big government” is whatever aspect of government they don’t like. “Small and efficient government” is whatever aspect they do like, no matter how massive the government actually is. Indeed, the actual size of government is irrelevant to this equation.

    [5] The article says, “If we do not reduce the cost of care in this country, no version of reform will be sustainable.”

    I disagree. First of all, Medicare, if made universal, would set the price of most drugs and medical procedures. Thus, to a large extent, cost control would be automatic. Second even if there was no cost control, the U.S. government could easily afford to pay for Universal Medicare (even if federal taxes were lowered to zero) since the government creates its spending money out of thin air.

    [6] The article says, “Universal healthcare and ‘government-run healthcare’ or ‘socialized medicine’ are not synonymous.”

    Agreed.

    [7] The article says, “Universal healthcare is generally not provided ‘free’.”

    Totally wrong. Tax revenues do not pay for the federal government, or for any of its programs. We could continue to pay Social Security benefits, for example, even if the FICA tax was eliminated. During the 1930s Depression, did the federal government become “insolvent”? No. The U.S. government’s spending-money is just like the “Monopoly” board game money. If we need more, we just create it out of thin air by putting marks on scraps of paper, or by crediting bank accounts.

    [8] The article says, “Having public options does not have to eliminate the private sector.”

    Agreed. Citizens should have a choice, just as they have a choice in countries that have Universal Medicare.

    [9] The article says, “Universal healthcare does not mean no personal responsibility.”

    Agreed. We can negotiate this. For example, the U.S. government could encourage you to stop smoking by declining to cover your smoking-related illnesses. That’s just a random example.

    [10] The article says, “Our government’s involvement in healthcare is fractured, and thus is inefficient and lacks cost controls.”

    Agreed. Medicare must be made universal.

    Like

    1. You provided a link to an article.
      https://ivn.us/2017/03/28/10-reasons-why-fiscal-conservatives-should-reconsider-universal-healthcare/

      Some responses to it…

      [1] What does the article mean by “fiscally responsible” in the context of the federal government? Does it mean the U.S. government “can’t spend money it doesn’t have,” or that the government needs a balanced budget?

      You and I must be fiscally responsible. We must budget our money. If our expenditures exceed our income, then we will be in trouble. Same with city, county, and state governments. Not so with the federal government, which creates its spending money out of thin air, simply by crediting bank accounts. The U.S. government creates about $4 trillion each fiscal year, which, in hundred-dollar bills, would weigh 22,000 TONS (not pounds). Of course, most of that $4 trillion is not physical. (Strictly speaking, no money is physical.)

      Bill Clinton ran a federal surplus for four years. The result was a recession. The economy’s surplus is the U.S. government’s deficit. The U.S. government’s deficit is the economy’s surplus.

      When right-wingers speak of the federal government being “fiscally responsible,” they mean less spending for average people, and more spending for the rich, and for weapons makers and so on.

      You and I are not going to agree 100% on how the federal government creates and spends money. There is a difference between what the Fed does and not having a real currency at all. You cannot expect the federal government to create and provide out of thin air. For one thing, there are employees and contractors that have to be paid and if you continually pour previously “non-existent” money into the system, you devalue the currency and cause inflation. It’s bad enough as it is.

      Clinton did not run a surplus for 4 years (close, but accounting myth) nor does the govt exist as an opposite to the economy. They exist in tandem. I don’t know where you get these ideas.

      Yes, fiscal responsibility means not spending more than we take in.

      “What works for WHO? For the rich, or for everyone? Privatized health insurance works mainly for the rich. It is very “successful” for the rich, just as gratuitous austerity works beautifully for the rich. By contrast, Universal Medicare works for everyone.”

      What works by accommodating the most people, is Constitutional, and addresses costs. Universal Medicare is NOT the only alternative for universal health care and that’s why most countries do NOT choose a single-payer nationally-run system.

      “[3] The article says, “Let’s be clear: contrary to the claims of some, healthcare and anything else that must be provided by someone else is NOT a right.”

      “That is a 100% subjective opinion, and an arbitrary judgment. I reject it.”

      Then you would be incorrect. Nothing that MUST be provided by someone else is your RIGHT. What else do you believe you have a RIGHT to that someone else must give their time/money to provide? And what makes you believe you can force someone else to give them to you?

      “For the rich, and for right-wingers, a system “works” if it widens the gap between the rich and the rest. A system “does not work” if it narrows the gap. This (for right-wingers) is “scientific. For “scientific” right-wingers, “big government” is whatever narrows the gap between the rich and the rest. “Small and efficient government” is whatever widens the gap. Such theft and immorality is justified by right-wing “science.””

      The writer quoted there did a study on Singapore, is not a right-winger and in fact was writing about a universal healthcare system, so your ad hominem is misplaced; further, you are showing your bigotry toward people you don’t agree with by lobbing absurd broad generalizations about what “the rich” want. The idea that anyone credible actually WANTS to widen the gap is absurd and not based in fact. Further, the right generally believes that the way to lessen the gap is to lift up the poor and middle class with opportunity. Progressives are far too invested in how to take money from the rich to redistribute it. Now which is the better philosophy?

      This is typical of progressives who continue to insist that those who disagree with them (conservatives, neoliberals, ad nauseum) are all selfish bastards who only care about themselves and piss on the poor. It’s nothing but hateful bigotry and it’s tired. That kind of demonization is a big part why the left lost the last election.

      [5] The article says, “If we do not reduce the cost of care in this country, no version of reform will be sustainable.”

      I disagree. First of all, Medicare, if made universal, would set the price of most drugs and medical procedures. Thus, to a large extent, cost control would be automatic. Second even if there was no cost control, the U.S. government could easily afford to pay for Universal Medicare (even if federal taxes were lowered to zero) since the government creates its spending money out of thin air.

      You cannot reduce the cost with arbitrary price fixing alone. If you think you can, you don’t understand the health care market at all. Doctors and medical professionals deserve to earn a decent living and even know, Medicare and Medicaid offer very low reimbursements. But regardless, as long as your arguments are based on the idea that the federal government can create as much money as it wants out of thin air, you’re not operating on the same planet as everyone else. If that’s the case, why doesn’t the govt just pay us all enough to live in luxury and be done with it?

      [6] The article says, “Universal healthcare and ‘government-run healthcare’ or ‘socialized medicine’ are not synonymous.”

      Agreed.

      [7] The article says, “Universal healthcare is generally not provided ‘free’.”

      Totally wrong. Tax revenues do not pay for the federal government, or for any of its programs. We could continue to pay Social Security benefits, for example, even if the FICA tax was eliminated. During the 1930s Depression, did the federal government become “insolvent”? No. The U.S. government’s spending-money is just like the “Monopoly” board game money. If we need more, we just create it out of thin air by putting marks on scraps of paper, or by crediting bank accounts.

      This is not accurate and there are no credible facts to back this up. There are some accounting tricks that go on but the federal budget is based on tax revenue plus money we borrow. They cheat, yes – but that doesn’t mean the system should be based on or rely on printing more money we don’t have. If that were the plan, why not just pay off all the debt and be done with it?

      “Citizens should have a choice, just as they have a choice in countries that have Universal Medicare.”

      That does not mean that a nationalized health insurance program in the United States is the best option.

      “the U.S. government could encourage you to stop smoking by declining to cover your smoking-related illnesses. That’s just a random example.”

      Agreed – but good luck with that. I think there should be limitations. Actions have consequences.

      “Medicare must be made universal.”

      Again, that does not mean that a nationalized health insurance program in the United States is the best option. But I do favor some sort of universal health care.

      Like

      1. “mrtapeguy” writes, “You and I are not going to agree 100% on how the federal government creates and spends money.”

        Yes, because you have been programmed with lies all your life. Stay beside me, and in time I will free your mind.

        “mrtapeguy” writes, “There is a difference between what the Fed does and not having a real currency at all. You cannot expect the federal government to create and provide out of thin air.”

        I don’t “expect” it. I note what happens in the real world. I do not describe what “should” happen. I describe what actually does happen.

        If you can grasp the fact that money is not physical, then you will be light-years ahead of everyone around you. Only 1 in 100,000 people understand these simple truths. The numbers in your checking account are not money. They represent money. No one has ever seen a checking account, nor ever seen a dollar. Dollars are 100% mental entities that we represent with accounting notations. They are infinite, since they are not physical.

        Likewise the marks on a scoreboard are not points. They merely represent points. No one has ever seen a point. Points are 100% mental entities that we represent with marks (or lights) on a scoreboard. Points are infinite, since they are not physical.

        Regarding inflation and money devaluing, you are looking only at the supply side of the equation. I’m going to leave that issue for now, but I will explain it if you bring it up again.

        “mrtapeguy” writes, “Clinton did not run a surplus for 4 years (close, but accounting myth) nor does the govt exist as an opposite to the economy. They exist in tandem. I don’t know where you get these ideas.”

        According to the OMB, in FY 1998 the U.S. government ran a surplus of $69.3 billion, which meant that $69.3 billion was sucked out of the U.S. economy. In 1999 the federal surplus was $126 billion; in 2000 it was $236.2 billion, and on 2001 it was $128 billion. This means that over a four year period, an aggregate $559.5 billion was sucked out of the U.S. economy. Not until FY 2002 did we move back onto the (badly needed) deficit territory when W. Bush went on a spending spree for his wars.

        See this for an example…
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2001_United_States_federal_budget

        “mrtapeguy” writes, “Yes, fiscal responsibility means not spending more than we take in.”

        Uh huh. If you were like the U.S. government, and you could create infinite dollars out of thin air, simply by changing the numbers in your bank account, would you worry about fiscal responsibility? Would you need loans? Tax revenue? Would you need to balance your income with your expenses? No, no. no, and no. You have been lied to all your life. Listen up, Neo, and free your mind. What I’m explaining is very simple.

        “mrtapeguy” writes, “What works by accommodating the most people, is constitutional, and addresses costs. Universal Medicare is NOT the only alternative for universal health care and that’s why most countries do NOT choose a single-payer nationally-run system.”

        “Costs” have little relevance to a monetarily sovereign government that creates its spending money out of thin air, and whose currency is accepted worldwide.

        Also the reason why most countries do not choose a single-payer nationally-run system is that the Big Lie about money (which I’m trying to free you from) is nearly universal. Politicians falsely tell you that the bottomless well is dry, so that you grovel before them, and so you regard rich people as gods. It’s all a case of the emperor’s new clothes.

        On a different topic, is health care a right? Yes if you decide it is, and no if you decide it is not. All “rights” are what people decide they are, no more and no less. If you hate and resent others, then you will decide that health care is not a right. If you want people to help each other, then you will decide that heath care is a right. “Rights” are questions of attitude and moral character, not logic.

        “mrtapeguy” writes, “The idea that anyone credible actually WANTS to widen the gap is absurd and not based in fact.”

        Behold, grasshopper, the sensation of “wealth” is entirely relative. If everyone has a million dollars, then no one is financially “wealthy” in the sense of being special. But if I have a million, and everyone around me has nothing, then I am a god. I feel special — i.e. wealthy. Therefore the sensation of wealth is relative. It is not based on how much I have, but on how much more I have than you have. Therefore, to increase my sensation of wealth, I seek to widen the gap between you and me. To do this, I can get more money than you and / or I deprive you of money. Either way widens the gap. Either way increases my sensation of wealth and power over you.

        The rich know that federal social programs do not take one penny from their pockets, since they know that the U.S. government creates its spending money out of thin air. Yet they oppose federal social programs because they want to widen the gap between themselves and you. Your pain is their pleasure. Sadistic? Sociopathic? Yes, but that’s the world we live in.

        “mrtapeguy” writes, “The right generally believes that the way to lessen the gap is to lift up the poor and middle class with opportunity. Progressives are far too invested in how to take money from the rich to redistribute it. Now which is the better philosophy?”

        I agree that the poor too often seek to bring the rich down, rather than bring themselves up. Hence the poor demand that rich people be taxed more, even though federal tax dollars are effectively destroyed upon receipt. (I don’t like to see anyone pay federal taxes, rich or poor.) That said, the right does NOT want to lift up the poor and middle class with opportunity. Instead, right-wingers want to increase the gap between themselves and others, by driving the lower classes down.

        If right-wingers wanted to lift up the poor and middle class with opportunity, then right-wingers would agree to Single Payer, so that average people have less financial stress, and therefore more opportunities in their lives.

        Among average people, both right-wingers and leftists have heads full of lies about money. Both sides falsely think that dollars are physical and limited, and that the federal government needs tax revenue. Therefore leftists want the rich to pay more taxes, while rightists want to cut social programs. Neither is necessary.

        At the moment you fight me. That’s okay. Your shock happens to everyone when they are first shown “The Matrix.” Just let my words simmer in your subconscious. One day you will realize that I speak the truth.

        “mrtapeguy” writes, “This is typical of progressives who continue to insist that those who disagree with them (conservatives, neoliberals, ad nauseum) are all selfish bastards who only care about themselves and piss on the poor. It’s nothing but hateful bigotry and it’s tired. That kind of demonization is a big part why the left lost the last election.”

        I myself am a conservative in many ways, but I say that neoliberals are indeed selfish fucks. Still, I agree that Hillary lost because the nation grew tired of political correctness and bullshit identity politics. Hillary was the same as Obama. Both were neoliberals, and were Democrats in name only. (I myself am an independent.)

        “mrtapeguy” writes, “You cannot reduce the cost with arbitrary price fixing alone.”

        Why not? Medicare does it.

        “mrtapeguy” writes, “Doctors and medical professionals deserve to earn a decent living and even now, Medicare and Medicaid offer very low reimbursements.”

        “Deserve” is a matter of opinion. Many doctors and medical professionals are incompetent overpaid morons. But if you want Universal Medicare to pay them well, then fine. I have no problem with that. The federal government can afford ANYTHING, and without taking any money from me or you.

        “mrtapeguy” writes, “As long as your arguments are based on the idea that the federal government can create as much money as it wants out of thin air, you’re not operating on the same planet as everyone else. If that’s the case, why doesn’t the govt just pay us all enough to live in luxury and be done with it?”

        Why? The gap, my son. Bankers, rich people, and their puppet politicians want to widen the gap between the rich and the rest. The gap can never be wide enough to satisfy them. We can never grovel enough for drops of water from the inexhaustible well.

        You will eventually see that I speak the truth. Why? Because you oppose me. You fight me. You call me crazy. Everyone does that at first. The ones who really stay trapped are those who (unlike you) remain apathetic.

        And once you finally do break out of the Matrix, you will then have to deal with the frustration of knowing that you grasp the truth, while everyone around you remains hypnotized. You alone will see that the emperor has no clothes. The truth will set you free, but it will also make you lonely.

        Like

        1. “Yes, because you have been programmed with lies all your life. Stay beside me, and in time I will free your mind.”

          I did not say I do not understand how money works. I understand that what’s in my bank is not “real money.” Under the gold standard, currency represented a hard asset and now it does not. I get it,

          “I do not describe what “should” happen. I describe what actually does happen.”

          To some degree, yes – and they CAN do that. That is not to say the government has no hard assets. But you claim you’re not saying anything that we SHOULD do, why do you keep saying the federal government needs no tax revenue when they can simply print money to provide things? Yes, they COULD do that. What does that look like if they simply stopped collecting taxes and did that instead?

          “If you can grasp the fact that money is not physical, then you will be light-years ahead of everyone around you. Only 1 in 100,000 people understand these simple truths. The numbers in your checking account are not money. They represent money. No one has ever seen a checking account, nor ever seen a dollar. Dollars are 100% mental entities that we represent with accounting notations. They are infinite, since they are not physical.”

          Yes, currency represents money, previously attached to gold (or it could have been another hard asset) but now “the full faith and credit of the US government.”

          “Regarding inflation and money devaluing, you are looking only at the supply side of the equation. I’m going to leave that issue for now, but I will explain it if you bring it up again.”

          I did not say that was the only factor but it certainly is one. The more you water down the money supply, the less its value.

          “mrtapeguy” writes, “Clinton did not run a surplus for 4 years (close, but accounting myth) nor does the govt exist as an opposite to the economy. They exist in tandem. I don’t know where you get these ideas”

          “According to the OMB, in FY 1998 the U.S. government ran a surplus of $69.3 billion, which meant that $69.3 billion was sucked out of the U.S. economy. In 1999 the federal surplus was $126 billion; in 2000 it was $236.2 billion, and on 2001 it was $128 billion. This means that over a four year period, an aggregate $559.5 billion was sucked out of the U.S. economy. Not until FY 2002 did we move back onto the (badly needed) deficit territory when W. Bush went on a spending spree for his wars.”

          If you are saying taxes are sucked out of the economy, that is true that it is removed before it is put back in. But your philosophy seems to be that we should run a deficit because that ultimately means putting more back into the economy than we take out? And we should do it without borrowing but just by printing more money?

          “mrtapeguy” writes, “Yes, fiscal responsibility means not spending more than we take in.”

          “Uh huh. If you were like the U.S. government, and you could create infinite dollars out of thin air, simply by changing the numbers in your bank account, would you worry about fiscal responsibility? Would you need loans? Tax revenue? Would you need to balance your income with your expenses? No, no. no, and no. You have been lied to all your life. Listen up, Neo, and free your mind. What I’m explaining is very simple.”

          Again, I understand the concept of what you’re saying. But you fail to recognize that the currency and debt is collateralized by deposits, private debt, etc. We have private property that has value. And the idea that the spending money doesn’t come from taxes or borrowing makes no sense.

          ““Costs” have little relevance to a monetarily sovereign government that creates its spending money out of thin air, and whose currency is accepted worldwide.”

          Under your premise, which you claim you do not advocate, but then you really do: that the government should spend on things you believe we need by printing money to pay for it. What do you think that would do to the value of our currency?

          “Also the reason why most countries do not choose a single-payer nationally-run system is that the Big Lie about money (which I’m trying to free you from) is nearly universal. Politicians falsely tell you that the bottomless well is dry, so that you grovel before them, and so you regard rich people as gods. It’s all a case of the emperor’s new clothes.”

          Again, just because they CAN create more money does not mean they always DO, nor that they SHOULD, nor that unbridled debt is ok because they can. It’s also absurd when you claim I think rich people are gods. When you make these kinds of allegations that have zero basis in fact, it doesn’t bolster your case.

          “On a different topic, is health care a right? Yes if you decide it is, and no if you decide it is not. All “rights” are what people decide they are, no more and no less. If you hate and resent others, then you will decide that health care is not a right. If you want people to help each other, then you will decide that heath care is a right. “Rights” are questions of attitude and moral character, not logic.”

          Yes, we as a society can decide what we deem are rights. That ship has already sailed. You have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. You do not have the right to force someone else to do anything FOR YOU. It’s that simple. And it has nothing to do with resenting and hating others – again, more subjective bigotry with anyone who holds a different view. Something does not have to be a right to be important – and while our society, outside of the modern-day progressive, has largely decided that you do not have the right to force others to do things for you and I concur, I willingly do things myself for others and expect that some will do things for me when the circumstances justify it. Since I also support universal healthcare of some type, my “hate and resentment” for others has zero effect on my recognition that everyone deserves access to affordable care.

          “mrtapeguy” writes, “The idea that anyone credible actually WANTS to widen the gap is absurd and not based in fact.”

          “Behold, grasshopper, the sensation of “wealth” is entirely relative. If everyone has a million dollars, then no one is financially “wealthy” in the sense of being special. But if I have a million, and everyone around me has nothing, then I am a god. I feel special — i.e. wealthy. Therefore the sensation of wealth is relative. It is not based on how much I have, but on how much more I have than you have. Therefore, to increase my sensation of wealth, I seek to widen the gap between you and me. To do this, I can get more money than you and / or I deprive you of money. Either way widens the gap. Either way increases my sensation of wealth and power over you.”

          I don’t know anyone who feels that way. You have a very strong need to assign negative and nefarious ideas and motives to those you wish to demonize. I submit that you are the one who resents others and have created and artificial caricature. I desire to be financially successful because it gives me freedom and makes it easier to take care of my responsibilities and my family while giving back to the community and not being a burden on anyone else. There’s nothing about power or “I have more than you” about it.

          “The rich know that federal social programs do not take one penny from their pockets, since they know that the U.S. government creates its spending money out of thin air. Yet they oppose federal social programs because they want to widen the gap between themselves and you. Your pain is their pleasure. Sadistic? Sociopathic? Yes, but that’s the world we live in.”

          The government does not take all of its budget out of thin air. And the rich do not uniformly oppose social programs. This is the kind of class warfare rhetoric that divides society based on one type of person or another. Let me explain something to you: there are good and bad people and they aren’t segregated by wealth. Many wealthy people do good for others. The idea that you think everyone wealthy is sadistic is frankly, disturbing. I can see The Emperor enjoying seeing the hate flow through you.

          “I agree that the poor too often seek to bring the rich down, rather than bring themselves up. Hence the poor demand that rich people be taxed more, even though federal tax dollars are effectively destroyed upon receipt. (I don’t like to see anyone pay federal taxes, rich or poor.) That said, the right does NOT want to lift up the poor and middle class with opportunity. Instead, right-wingers want to increase the gap between themselves and others, by driving the lower classes down.”

          Your assertions are based on hatred, not fact. The world is not run by Mr. Potter and it is JUST THIS KIND OF HATEFUL RHETORIC that gives the poor reason to demand the rich be taxed more. After all, they’re just evil selfish bastards that only want to keep the poor man down. SMH

          “If right-wingers wanted to lift up the poor and middle class with opportunity, then right-wingers would agree to Single Payer, so that average people have less financial stress, and therefore more opportunities in their lives.”

          So your barometer for compassion is entirely based on single payer? There are many compelling arguments against single payer and I know of very few people whose attitude is “too bad for you” and of the couple I do know, they aren’t wealthy. Further, many believe the negatives outweigh the positive and there is compelling evidence that their concerns are justified.

          “Among average people, both right-wingers and leftists have heads full of lies about money. Both sides falsely think that dollars are physical and limited, and that the federal government needs tax revenue. Therefore leftists want the rich to pay more taxes, while rightists want to cut social programs. Neither is necessary.”

          Because of the policy you don’t really support that we should just print money to pay for stuff. Got it.

          “At the moment you fight me. That’s okay. Your shock happens to everyone when they are first shown “The Matrix.” Just let my words simmer in your subconscious. One day you will realize that I speak the truth.”

          There is no shock. Your ideas about monetary issues are half-truths and your opinions of people are prejudiced and frankly, disturbing. You literally judge people’s character by their bank account.

          “mrtapeguy” writes, This is typical of progressives who continue to insist that those who disagree with them (conservatives, neoliberals, ad nauseum) are all selfish bastards who only care about themselves and piss on the poor. It’s nothing but hateful bigotry and it’s tired. That kind of demonization is a big part why the left lost the last election.”

          “I myself am a conservative in many ways, but I say that neoliberals are indeed selfish fucks. Still, I agree that Hillary lost because the nation grew tired of political correctness and bullshit identity politics. Hillary was the same as Obama. Both were neoliberals, and were Democrats in name only. (I myself am an independent.)”

          Even neoliberals, who again don’t self-identify but seem to be the new poster children for angry progressives, are not monolithic. As the Dalai Lama says “just because someone else is on a different path than you doesn’t mean he is lost”

          ““mrtapeguy” writes, “You cannot reduce the cost with arbitrary price fixing alone.”

          Why not? Medicare does it.”

          Yeah, that’s working out great isn’t it? We’ve really got costs under control!

          ““Deserve” is a matter of opinion. Many doctors and medical professionals are incompetent overpaid morons. But if you want Universal Medicare to pay them well, then fine. I have no problem with that. The federal government can afford ANYTHING, and without taking any money from me or you.”

          There are incompetent morons in all walks of life but I’d be willing to bet in the field of medicine it’s relatively low since they have to go through years of school, residency and licensing. And again, you betray your true desire that the govt simply print money to pay for stuff.

          “The gap, my son. Bankers, rich people, and their puppet politicians want to widen the gap between the rich and the rest. The gap can never be wide enough to satisfy them. We can never grovel enough for drops of water from the inexhaustible well.”

          Wrong…because eventually, our currency would be worth NOTHING.

          “You will eventually see that I speak the truth. Why? Because you oppose me. You fight me. You call me crazy. Everyone does that at first. The ones who really stay trapped are those who (unlike you) remain apathetic.”

          I am not apathetic. You are simply incorrect about many things that are demonstrably false, and you are confused about what you think should be, as indicated by your contradictions.

          And once you finally do break out of the Matrix, you will then have to deal with the frustration of knowing that you grasp the truth, while everyone around you remains hypnotized. You alone will see that the emperor has no clothes. The truth will set you free, but it will also make you lonely.

          Oh, I bet it is lonely out there. These are things you feel the need to believe – but you have isolated yourself with your hatred for those who have been successful without treating them as individuals. That’s not ok.

          Like

          1. mrtapeguy writes, “I did not say I do not understand how money works. I understand that what’s in my bank is not ‘real money.’ Under the gold standard, currency represented a hard asset and now it does not. I get it.”

            No, you do not get it. Not yet. In the first place, the “gold standard” was always a sham; a pretense. Governments always issued currency at face values far beyond the market value of their gold holdings at any given time. Furthermore governments went on and off the gold standard at will. The “gold standard” was a gimmick that politicians used when they wanted to falsely claim that the government had “no money” for this or that. Politicians dropped the “gold standard” gimmick during the world wars, when they needed to create extra money out of thin air for the war effort. Furthermore it is absurd to imagine that any government could actually base its fiscal policies on fluctuating gold markets. The U.S. government finally did away with the fake “gold standard” pretense on 15 Aug 1971.

            To address your other part, “real money” is whatever society and the government says it is. “Real money” is whatever currency the issuer (i.e. U.S. government) and user (you and me) give their “full faith and credit” to. “Real money” is not “backed” by anything except this full faith and credit (which includes federal laws). If you doubt this, then give all your “worthless” dollars to me so I can spend them. You have been lied to so long that even though your dollars are 100% real and spendable, you imagine that they are not real.

            mrtapeguy writes, “Why do you keep saying the federal government needs no tax revenue when they can simply print money to provide things? Yes, they COULD do that. What does that look like if they simply stopped collecting taxes and did that instead?”

            Burn these four words into your mind: MONEY IS NOT PHYSICAL. Money is simply a way to keep score on ledgers that we call bank accounts. A dollar is simply a unit of account, with no physical existence. The government can create and destroy these units of account at will, simply by changing the numbers in bank accounts. There is nothing physical to collect as tax revenues. Money is just a numbers game. The only reason why the federal government collects taxes is that taxation is the ultimate expression of federal power. Also, taxation partially helps to maintain the integrity of the dollar system, since the U.S. government will only accept dollars as payment for taxes.

            You think I live in a dream-world, when it is actually you who lives in a dream world. You think money is physical and limited. You think the U.S. government must first collect dollars before it can spend them. That is absurd. Dollars are created out of thin air in two ways: [1] bank lending and [2] federal government spending.

            I know that these truths are new to you, but as I said, just let it all sit in your subconscious a while. It will eventually blossom into a Great Realization. All your life you have been lied to.

            mrtapeguy writes, “The more you water down the money supply, the less its value.”

            That’s inflation. When extra dollars are added to the economy, inflation only happens when

            [1] There is no added demand for added dollars. If the demand increases with the dollar supply, then there is no loss in value, and thus no inflation. Moreover the Fed plays with demand for dollars every day via interest rates. You are only thinking about the supply of dollars, while you ignore the demand side of the equation. Inflation only happens when the equation becomes imbalanced. If you think the dollars in your bank account would lose half their value if the U.S. government doubled the money supply, then please exchange with me two dollars for every dollar I give to you. If everyone around you had more money to spend, would everyone around you cease to want dollars? No. Demand would continue. The equation would remain balanced. There would be no inflation.

            [2] There is a shortage of things to spend the dollars on. During the world wars, everyone had jobs, but there were scarce consumer goods to spend their salaries on, since consumer goods were rationed for the war effort. When everyone’s pockets are bulging with money, and there is nothing to spend the money on, the result is price inflation, which can become severe enough to cripple an economy. The trick is to get money back out of people’s pockets. This can be done via taxation (federal withholding was introduced during WW II). But since people don’t like to pay taxes, the government’s solution was to lie to the masses, telling them they needed to buy war bonds to “finance” the war. This was bullshit, since the government created money out of thin air for the war. But the masses believed it. The real purpose of war binds was not to “finance the war,” but to control inflation.

            mrtapeguy writes, “Your philosophy seems to be that we should run a deficit because that ultimately means putting more back into the economy than we take out? And we should do it without borrowing but just by printing more money.”

            Exactly. We need far larger deficits to stimulate the real economy, as opposed to the financial economy. That is, to boost Main Street as opposed to Wall Street. Politicians don’t want larger deficits. Politicians want gratuitous austerity (i.e. deficit reduction) in order to make you to grovel to them and remain poor. Politicians want you to think that dollars are physical and limited. They want you to think the U.S. government has a “debt crisis.” They want you to think that programs like Social Security are “insolvent.” It’s all lies. You have heard the lies so often that you actually believe them.

            Regarding borrowing, you ignored what I explained above. The U.S. government does not borrow one penny of its spending money from anyone or anything.

            mrtapeguy writes, “ I understand the concept of what you’re saying. But you fail to recognize that the currency and debt is collateralized by deposits, private debt, etc. We have private property that has value. And the idea that the spending money doesn’t come from taxes or borrowing makes no sense,”

            I am only talking about the federal government. Nothing of what I say applies to state, county, or municipal governments. The latter cannot create money out of thin air. If state, county, or municipal governments do not get enough dollars from the U.S. government, then they must get dollars from taxation, and / or from loans (which leads to more taxation). Or they must sell goods or services to other states.

            By the way, you say that “currency and debt is collateralized by deposits, private debt, etc.” In one sense you are correct, in that regular dollars in bank accounts must be balanced and collateralized by reserve dollars in Fed-authorized banks. Regular dollars can be spent. Reserve dollars cannot. The $20 trillion “national debt” is $20 trillion in reserves at the Fed. That Fed reserve money cannot be spent until it is first converted back to regular money. This is done by transferring dollars from Fed savings accounts to regular checking accounts. The purpose of reserves is to steady the financial system and the money system. But again, both regular dollars and reserve dollars are not physical. They are mental constructs, represented by numbers in accounts.

            Have you ever seen the number 1? Or 2 or 3? No you have not. Nobody ever has. What you see is a mark that REPRESENTS numbers. Likewise, no one has ever seen a dollar, or seen a bank account. What we see are numbers that REPRESENT dollars and bank accounts. Dollars are infinite, since dollars are not physical. Therefore the claim that the federal government is “bankrupt” is a lie, designed to make you grovel. State, county, or municipal governments can become bankrupt, but not the U.S. government.

            mrtapeguy writes, “Under your premise, which you claim you do not advocate, but then you really do: that the government should spend on things you believe we need by printing money to pay for it. What do you think that would do to the value of our currency?”

            Nothing. See my comments on inflation above.

            mrtapeguy writes, “Again, just because they CAN create more money does not mean they always DO, nor that they SHOULD, nor that unbridled debt is ok because they can. It’s also absurd when you claim I think rich people are gods. When you make these kinds of allegations that have zero basis in fact, it doesn’t bolster your case.”

            The U.S. government creates about $4 trillion per fiscal year out of thin air. Banks create much more than that, as credit (i.e. loans). As individual people we need more federal dollars so we don’t have to rely on loan dollars, and thereby incur debt. As long as there is no serious inflation problem, and there is unused aggregate demand (as is the case now) the government should create far more dollars than it does now.

            Regarding rich people as gods, you distorted what I wrote. Please set your emotions and your indignation aside. I said that when everyone has a million dollars, no one is special. But when one person has a million, and everyone else has nothing, then society treats the millionaire like a god. That’s just a fact of life. To deny that very rich people are treated special is to live in a dream-world.

            mrtapeguy writes,“Yes, we as a society can decide what we deem are rights. That ship has already sailed. You have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. You do not have the right to force someone else to do anything FOR YOU. It’s that simple.”

            You are contradicting yourself. First you concede that “rights” are only what society decides they are. Then you pretend that “rights” are absolute, irrespective of society. The first assertion is correct. The second is an error. If society decides that I have a right to enslave you on a plantation, then I have that right.

            mrtapeguy writes, “And it has nothing to do with resenting and hating others – again, more subjective bigotry with a…”

            Whoa — if you’re going to start projecting your personal foibles onto be, calling me a bigot and so on, then you will shut down the exchange. Please decide whether you want to be “right” or whether you want to learn something.

            mrtapeguy writes, “Since I also support universal healthcare of some type, my “hate and resentment” for others has zero effect on my recognition that everyone deserves access to affordable care.”

            I say that everyone deserves access to FREE health care that is paid for with federal dollars.

            mrtapeguy writes, “I don’t know anyone who feels that way. You have a very strong need to assign negative and nefarious ideas and motives to those you wish to demonize. I submit that you are the one who resents others and have created and artificial caricature. I desire to be financially successful because it gives me freedom and makes it easier to take care of my responsibilities and my family while giving back to the community and not being a burden on anyone else. There’s nothing about power or ‘I have more than you’ about it.”

            I was talking about basic human nature. Statistically speaking, society treats rich people better. Statistically speaking, most rich people (not all) think themselves better than the lower classes. To deny this is to live in a dream-world. If you insist on living in a dream world, then I cannot help you. When we live in a dream world, no one can get us out of it except us.

            Regarding demonizing people, I merely say that neoliberals (without exception) are worthless, lying, sub-human sociopathic pieces of shyte.

            mrtapeguy writes, “The government does not take all of its budget out of thin air.”

            Again you insist on believing the lie that money is physical and limited.

            mrtapeguy writes,em> “And the rich do not uniformly oppose social programs. This is the kind of class warfare rhetoric that divides society based on one type of person or another. Let me explain something to you: there are good and bad people and they aren’t segregated by wealth.”

            There are always exceptions, but statistically speaking I am correct. For the most part, rich people regard the lower classes as the enemy. It is not I who advocate class warfare, but most of the rich. They screw the lower classes any chance they get. Obamacare is an example.

            The rest of your comments devolve into insults and hyperbole. Thanks for visiting.

            Like

            1. This will be my last comment because you are not interested in the facts other than as you interpret them. Several of your claims are demonstrably false and yet you will instead claim I’m in the Matrix. It’s not rational and it’s not reality.

              “To address your other part, “real money” is whatever society and the government says it is. “Real money” is whatever currency the issuer (i.e. U.S. government) and user (you and me) give their “full faith and credit” to. “Real money” is not “backed” by anything except this full faith and credit (which includes federal laws). If you doubt this, then give all your “worthless” dollars to me so I can spend them. You have been lied to so long that even though your dollars are 100% real and spendable, you imagine that they are not real.

              Burn these four words into your mind: MONEY IS NOT PHYSICAL. Money is simply a way to keep score on ledgers that we call bank accounts. A dollar is simply a unit of account, with no physical existence. The government can create and destroy these units of account at will, simply by changing the numbers in bank accounts. There is nothing physical to collect as tax revenues. Money is just a numbers game. The only reason why the federal government collects taxes is that taxation is the ultimate expression of federal power. Also, taxation partially helps to maintain the integrity of the dollar system, since the U.S. government will only accept dollars as payment for taxes.”

              I understand how money works. You even admit it here yourself. Currency is a representation of value. I never said it was physical other than as a physical manifestation of assigned value. The bottom line is that the government and the private sector treat our money as legal tender that is exchanged for goods and services. I never said they are worthless.

              Your claim as to why the government collects taxes is pure speculation with no basis in fact. Perhaps most reasonable people believe that a government established for the people by the people should be financed by the people as their share of personal responsibility. Please show me where anyone in any country – and by that I don’t mean some autocratic dictator – says “we are going to impose taxes so we can impose federal power.” Oh, but they could just print money and not collect taxes, which you think will have no effect on the currency. What exactly do you think would happen if you put $4 trillion in new dollars into the economy every year? You would devalue all the currency and eventually it would be worth nothing. This is economics 101. That is part and parcel of why, when the Fed wishes to increase the money supply, that is not the method. This is irrefutable fact and common sense you are simply choosing to ignore.

              “The $20 trillion “national debt” is $20 trillion in reserves at the Fed. ”

              I have no idea what you’re saying here. The national debt is money that we owe to various entities: the the Fed, various other domestic entities, China, Japan etc.

              “The U.S. government creates about $4 trillion per fiscal year out of thin air. Banks create much more than that, as credit (i.e. loans). As individual people we need more federal dollars so we don’t have to rely on loan dollars, and thereby incur debt. As long as there is no serious inflation problem, and there is unused aggregate demand (as is the case now) the government should create far more dollars than it does now.”

              No, the government does not. The government collects taxes and spends money. Banks do employ fractional reserve banking. Asking the government to create money to give to people makes no sense for the reasons I’ve mentioned. If that were a viable plan, why not just have the government take care of everyone and everything and we wouldn’t need money at all. How can you not understand these concepts?

              “Regarding demonizing people, I merely say that neoliberals (without exception) are worthless, lying, sub-human sociopathic pieces of shyte.”

              Again, just a new progressive term to demonize those you think pretend to be liberals but are really conservatives. It’s a pejorative. The actual meaning of the political philosophy is nothing offensive and it’s not that different from classical liberals. But haters gonna hate.

              “Again you insist on believing the lie that money is physical and limited.”

              I never said any such thing and have repeated again here that is not what I think. Understanding that the government can does not mean believing the government should. Further, the government does collect revenue via taxes and fees and that is an undeniable facts.

              “There are always exceptions, but statistically speaking I am correct. For the most part, rich people regard the lower classes as the enemy. It is not I who advocate class warfare, but most of the rich. They screw the lower classes any chance they get. Obamacare is an example.”

              What, someone did a study on this? It’s nonsense. Show me the proof. Let me guess: Pew research did a poll asking rich people if they think poor people are the enemy. Rich people may not empathize enough with the poor but they sure don’t have disdain for them the way you despise and demean the rich. I know many wealthy people who give a lot back to the community and it is simply shortsighted class envy and bigotry that you’re peddling when you break people’s character down by their bank account. That is YOUR Matrix and it’s one of your own choosing.

              Thanks for the conversation. I’m out.

              Like

  5. Thank you, thank you both for taking the time and effort to… “***** “Believe nothing merely because you have been told it…But whatsoever, after due examination and analysis,you find to be kind, conducive to the good, the benefit,the welfare of all beings – that doctrine believe and cling to,and take it as your guide.”- Buddha[Gautama Siddharta] (563 – 483 BC), Hindu Prince, founder of Buddhism.

    IMHO,Perhaps, maybe there is only ONE major issue of difference that may need to be resolved.
    RESOLVE- “What is ‘Money’, and What is the Role Of ‘Money’; all issues will then have perhaps a common
    causality.
    Quote Frederick Soddy, “(Entire book as a free download… http://archive.org/details/roleofmoney032861mbp

    PREFACE
    This book attempts to clear up the mystery of money in its social aspect. With the monetary
    system of the whole world in chaos, this mystery has never been so carefully fostered as it is to-day.
    And this is all the more curious inasmuch as there is not the slightest reason for this mystery.
    This book will show what money now is, what it does, and what it should do. From this will
    emerge the recognition of what has always been the true role of money. The standpoint from
    which most books on modern money are written has been reversed. In this book the subject is not
    treated from the point of view of the bankers as those are called who create by far the greater
    proportion of money but from that of the PUBLIC, who at present have to give up valuable
    goods and services to the bankers in return for the money that they have so cleverly created
    and create. This, surely, is what the public really wants to know about money.

    It was recognized in Athens and Sparta ten centuries before the birth of Christ that one
    of the most vital prerogatives of the State was the sole right to issue money. How curious that
    the unique quality of this prerogative is only now being re-discovered. The” money-power ” which
    has been able to overshadow ostensibly responsible government, is not the power of the merely ultrarich, but is nothing more nor less than a new technique designed to create and destroy money
    by adding and withdrawing figures in bank ledgers, without the slightest concern for the interests of
    the community or the real role that money ought to perform therein.
    The more profound students of money and, more recently, a very few historians have realized
    the enormous significance of this money power or technique, and its key position in shaping the
    course of world events through the ages. In this book the mode of approach and the philosophy
    of money is expounded in the light of a group of new doctrines, to which the name ergosophy is
    collectively given, which regard economics, sociology, and history with the eye of the engineer
    rather than with that of the humanist. It is concerned less with the details of particular schemes
    of monetary reform that have been advocated than with the general principles to which, in the
    author’s opinion, every monetary system must at long last conform, if it is to fulfil its proper role
    as the distributive mechanism of society. To allow it to become a source of revenue to private issuers is
    to create, first, a secret and illicit arm of the government and, last, a rival power strong enough ultimately
    to overthrow all other forms of government.”

    Quote, Frederick Soddy, “Genuine and Fictitious Loans. For a loan, if it is a genuine loan, does not make a deposit, because what the borrower gets the lender gives up, and there is no increase in the quantity of money, but only an alteration in the identity of the individual owners of it. But if the lender gives up nothing at all what the borrower receives is a new issue of money and the quantity is proportionately increased.
    “… There was essentially nothing new in this, or different in principle from lending ” promises-
    to-pay-gold ” instead of gold itself, save that the banks avoided the necessity of giving printed receipts for the goods and services their borrowers obtained for nothing, and there was a secret instead of open creation of money. Instead of lending
    notes, the banks, in effect, now lend cheque- books and the right to draw cheques up to limited sums beyond what the borrower possesses. For nearly a century, until the revelations of the War made it impossible to conceal the truth from the
    general public, the bankers stoutly denied that they were creating money at all, and claimed that they were merely lending the deposits their clients were not using…
    “… So elaborately has the real nature of this ridiculous proceeding been surrounded with confusion by some of the cleverest and most
    skilful advocates the world has ever known, that it still is something of a mystery to ordinary people, who hold their heads and confess they are ” unable to understand finance “. It is not intended that they should. But if, instead of trying to puzzle it out along the lines of ” what you get for money “, these people will reverse the procedure, as in this book, and do so on the
    of ” what you give up for it “, the trick is clear enough.
    ”Read more …..” THE ROLE OF MONEY , ” by Frederick Soddy (complete book: free book download: http://archive.org/details/roleofmoney032861mbp )

    Please, examine.
    Read more…https://bestsolutionsfl.wordpress.com/2016/12/21/where-we-went-wrong-ami-public-banking-and-soddy-solution/

    Like

    1. Justaluckyfool:

      Many thanks for your comment. I shall read that book (all 244 pages) and afterward do a blog post about it.

      Some items in your comment that I liked…

      [1] “There is not the slightest reason for this mystery.”

      The reason lies in average people’s deliberate obtuseness. You can see this obtuseness in a different reader’s comments above.

      [2] “It was recognized in Athens and Sparta that one of the most vital prerogatives of the State was the sole right to issue money. How curious that the unique quality of this prerogative is only now being re-discovered. The money-power which has been able to overshadow ostensibly responsible government, is not the power of the merely ultra-rich, but is a new technique designed to create and destroy money by adding and withdrawing figures in bank ledgers, without the slightest concern for the interests of the community or the real role that money ought to perform therein.”

      Correct. From this it follows that monetarily sovereign governments do not need to collect taxes (in their own currency) in order to create money (in their own currency). All they need to do is change figures in bank ledgers. Unfortunately some people are far too “brilliant” to grasp this simple fact, as you can see in someone else’s comments above.

      [3] “The more profound students of money and, more recently, a very few historians have realized the enormous significance of this money power or technique, and its key position in shaping the course of world events through the ages.”

      Correct. Money is so powerful that it behooves us to truly understand what money is, and how it works. Unfortunately some people are too “brilliant” to understand.

      [4] “In this book the mode of approach and the philosophy of money is expounded in the light of a group of new doctrines, to which the name ergosophy is collectively given, which regard economics, sociology, and history with the eye of the engineer rather than with that of the humanist.”

      I like it. Money is simply a way to manage (through accounting) natural resources, and especially human energy. Hence ergosophy.

      I also like the book’s differentiation between genuine and fictitious loans. Genuine loans are acts of kindness, compassion, and vision. Fictitious loans are theft and exploitation.

      Like

  6. elizabethharris001 to Justaluckyfool:”Many thanks for your comment. I shall read that book (all 244 pages) and afterward do a blog post about it.”
    I pray, from your words to God,s ears … ” after due examination and analysis,you find to be kind, conducive to the good, the benefit,the welfare of all beings – that doctrine believe and cling to,and take it as your guide.”- Buddha

    “There never was an idea stated
    that woke men out of their stupid indifference
    but its originator was spoken of as a crank.”
    — Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.
    (1809-1894) American Poet

    ** ONE OF THE BEST OF THE BEST-
    “The Role Of Money”
    .*** why not read a Noble Laureate ?
    ******Excerpt from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Soddy

    “In four books written from 1921 to 1934, Soddy carried on a “quixotic campaign for a radical restructuring of global monetary relationships”[this quote needs a citation], offering a perspective on economics rooted in physics—the laws of thermodynamics, in particular—and was “roundly dismissed as a crank”[this quote needs a citation]. While most of his proposals – “to abandon the gold standard, let international exchange rates float, use federal surpluses and deficits as macroeconomic policy tools that could counter cyclical trends, and establish bureaus of economic statistics (including a consumer price index) in order to facilitate this effort” – are now conventional practice, his critique of fractional-reserve banking still “remains outside the bounds of conventional wisdom”[this quote needs a citation]. Soddy wrote that financial debts grew exponentially at compound interest…”

    Free download-
    http://archive.org/stream/roleofmoney032861mbp/roleofmoney032861mbp_djvu.txt

    Like

  7. “The market sets wages.”

    I disagree, since it is a rigged system. The USG deliberately lets hundreds of thousands of Mexican and Central American illegal aliens to flood into the USA, who will gladly work for a fraction of what Americans will, and they don’t bitch about no benefits or working OT without pay. Goodbye living wage.

    The USG also abuses the H1-B tech worker visa program by letting the tech companies lie about their needs and applicants so they can import Indian IT types who will work for a lot less than some American with an IT degree.

    Although only around 10% of American still belong to a union, that is too many, if you listen to the MSM jackals howling about how unions are outdated and need to be dismantled, which the jackals have been doing to unions for decades and which Herr Trump has kicked into high gear by issuing an executive order telling contractors they don’t have to honor union wage scales.

    Like

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