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Everything posted by ParanoiA

  1. There's about as much "evidence" of the left's cloaked xenophobia and bigotry as there is "evidence" of the right's racist anti illegal immigration position. If there was evidence, liberalism and conservatism would have died a long time ago and I would be a much happier person. Instead, we have inconsistent "reasons", specious logic that betrays other motives. Like the point I raised about the left's long standing value of humanitarianism, and this inconsistency between charity and economic participation. Xenophobia and bigotry fit rather well. They don't want to see them, employ them, have anything to do with them, just give them money so they'll go away and they can feel altruistic. Which matches what we see here in America as well, with conservatives being more charitable than liberals, and prefering direct allocation over faceless programs. Lefties don't appear to want to mingle with needy people, just give them stuff so they'll go away. Businesses don't employ rock and dirt, they are made up of people. People who would like to participate in markets with us. Giving aid in order to open markets? Please explain how giving money away creates markets - further sustainable markets. I suppose if I toss out 20 dollar bills everyday, eventually there will be a gathering of people there every morning to collect them and go buy stuff. Is this the kind of market you're talking about? I've never seen charity sold as market creation, if so. Which of course, sounds terrible since it will require a constant introduction of resources since charity is not self sustaining, nor wealth creation. But it does keep them dependent, destitute, and marginalized which is exactly what Americans want when they eschew other Americans giving them work. What else am I or anyone else to think? Yes and you will please note that point is directed to John Cuther's use of "normal" over "typical" during your defense of the term. You would be wise to note such vocabulary when dealing with a homophobe, yet you reject the criticism depending on what kind of minority we're talking about. Calling gay people "not normal" reveals one's bias, though it does not prove such things, and John's use of the rich being "not normal" reveals his bias. Having a bias against rich people is the same as having a bias against gay people - it's ugly, divisive, broadly applied ignorance to the entire group. All the hallmarks of racism, sexism, and all the other ism's we go through. To be clear, taking a position against the rich in the context of a tax argument is not bias. Claiming a group as "not normal" however, is. First sentence is pure speculation, and probably belongs in Speculations, not in Politics. And that second bit is like saying hitmen should have to pay higher taxes because they murder people. No, crony capitalism is something you eliminate, not invest in. It is not possible for these businessmen to do this without government force. The marriage of government force and business is called crony capitalism and is the number one conflated issue with libertarians. Free markets, not regulated ones. That means no favors, no hurdles - just honest competition. Unlike the gun control argument, we actually could eliminate all laws. We don't need to be armed with regulatory law when the criminals aren't armed with it either. This kid got screwed by the grownups. The grownups that opted for security over freedom decades ago and are now totally conditioned to crank out law after law, micro managing their business sector into a slow crawl. You can open a business in Hong Kong in one day, but that same business takes a week in Delaware - the "easist" city to open a business. Permits, licenses, corporate subsidies, all work against the little guy that wants to start his own business. Government and crony caplitalism did that. They love each other. The point nobody talks about because it destroys this tax argument: The money invested that generated capital gains *was already taxed before*. That's the almost funny part of this smear campaign. Nobody asked how much he paid in taxes on the money that originated the investments. That money comes from previous capital gains, wages, property sales..etc - activites that require taxes to be paid. *AND* he doesn't get to use it. He makes money by letting other people use his money and do something with it. This is great. Totally positive. Everybody wins. Someone with motivation and ideas gets matched with someone with money and thirst for profit. If the investment fails, the taxpayers are not on the hook. If it succeeds, new taxpayers are created in the form of jobs. As to the second part, my parents are far from wealthy, and they own such property. It's taken them over 20 years and disciplined real estate decisions to do it. And we should all jump for joy when someone can lower their property taxes. Even if done illegally, I support it. Property taxes are one of the most unethical taxes we have, and among the most damaging. My grandmother died penniless, still paying that freaking property tax out of her social security checks. That house was hers. We, the people, had no business taking that from her or any of the millions of poor Americans we drain. (Edited to remove partial sentence after mouse crashed and couldn't figure out how to navigate the cursor well enough without it)
  2. Well of course I'd agree with that. Taxpayer subsidies is theft, basically. Are you suggesting there are always subsidies and incentives associated with offshoring jobs? But your argument is unique, using the subsidy/incentive qualifier. Most people see outsourcing as bad because it's sending jobs "out of the country". It's like the whole import/export business - it's a political statement, and that's it. We plant a flag and draw a crappy shaped circle around it and say that everything made inside it is magically more beneficial to me than stuff made outside of it. The global market doesn't recognize those silly lines and our economies are merging and it is beneficial to us all - including the never mentioned attribute of national security. Entangling business relationships makes it unattractive and costly to kill each other. In reality, there's what I produce, and then what everyone else produces. Imports and exports to me mean stuff I make and sell, and stuff I buy. The whole world is a potential importer, and I export to whoever will take it. And most people operate that way. Today, it's almost impossible to make something in one country. This reason article is very interesting, although perhaps a bit off topic I think it fits in this hyper-nationalism economic vein.
  3. ParanoiA

    Yay, GUNS!

    Very thoughtful points there. Human beings aren't static and we aren't all the same (surprise!). How do you know return fire would not send him away? He wore body armor (well, for brevity's sake) - he did not want to die. He surrendered to the police in his "body armor" - he did not want to exchange fire with them, did he? That could be a nod to trained intervention, or it could be that he was scared to test out that suit. He's not exactly combat tested and clearly not on a suicide mission. I'm not so sure anyone needed to be a perfect shooter, but a counter shooter. And note, that anyone who returns fire in that theater will have a concealed carry permit, which requires training, unless they're illegally carrying - which I still wouldn't have a problem with in the midst of a slaughter. (I'm not aware of any state that does not require training for a CCW, and despite some open carry laws, it's extremely rare to see anyone open carry. Police harass open carriers, a whole 'nother issue, so not a lot of people think it's worth the trouble). So, while you wouldn't have what I call the "ideal hero", a CCW carrier is going to know how to handle a gun safely, and shoot it fairly. Shooting is part of CCW training. Again, not perfect, but I think that's ok. I can't predict what would happen and I'll never claim that untrained interference with a gun will never hurt an innocent person or make things worse. I think an increase in CCW carriers interfering with mass shootings will however: 1) Create a general check on mass shooting before they even begin fantasizing about it. Dead shooters with thwarted plans that didn't get to enjoy themselves on the news kinda takes the fun out of it, I suspect. 2) More often will result in less dead innocents than more. (It only takes saving that one guy that's going to cure cancer to make that worth it - a problem I have with placing a price on a human life, even if 3 million bucks is way more than I thought they would give it). So, I don't know. We disagree on returning fire in the theater because I'm not so sure he couldn't be shot in the face (however incredibly difficult that shot is even for my wife, the bull's eye queen) or that he wouldn't retreat. Especially if there were several people returning fire. (Only in my dreams does he die a spectacular death where 3 people stand up and gun him down before his tear gas can fill up the whole of the room).
  4. It is difficult to use current crime statistics to pin down home invasion statistics - home invasion being a particular style of executing the same general list of crimes. I agree with the wikipedia definition of home invasion: Home invasion is the act of illegally entering a private and occupied dwelling with violent intent for the purpose of committing a crime against the occupants such as robbery, assault, rape, murder, or kidnapping. And I think the important distinction is the intent to commit violent crimes against the occupants, rather than to merely neutralize the occupants while they take their stuff. It also think it deserves distinction from the same crimes committed outside an enclosed structure such as a home. All of those violent crimes can be better enabled and realized, as well as escalated and prolonged by many orders over the street level version. Interesting bit here from Home Invasion News about the issues with FBI crime stats: http://www.homeinvasionnews.com/home-invasion-statistics-and-definitions-from-the-fbi/
  5. No, I would not accuse you and Swansont of such things. The context of this use of "normal" came from Swansont's defense of John Cuthber's post where he claimed rich people were not normal. I pointed out to him that the use of such a word - and you admit yourself needs to be qualified as a more formal statistical description - betrays a prejudice. If someone openly states "gay people are not normal", I'm going to suspect prejudice. I think most would too. I wanted John Cuthber to realize how he sounds. And that's important to this discussion because I believe it's this prejudice that fuels a progressive tax code, and the rationales, as opposed to purely objective analysis of economic benefit. The American poor are mostly not poor in my opinion. They merely compare themselves to the wealthy. Our standard of living is ridiculously high. Listening to Americans wax on about the poor and the help they need is like listening to someone trying to convince me that a millionaire in a neighborhood of billionaires is poor.
  6. I'm glad to know that you possess this opinion. I trust you rattle that line off in the presence of racist arguments against conservatives about illegal immigration? It is in the national security and economic interests that we globalize. We send aid to foreign countries, so we apparently are concerned. Employment and self empowerment become a relevant topic when talking about welfare. And to assign negative value to the inclusion of the desperate poor in this global economy is to suddenly dishonor humanitarianism, which I thought was a universally positive value. It is also blatant hypocrisy. The lefty logic that drives the importance of the American over the destitute Indian masks the ugly specter of greed. It would appear that the rich are not the only Americans that could be described as greedy sons of bitches. I can't help it if some Americans think they're poor. So gay people are not normal? They only make up 4% of the population, and when speaking about sexual orientation that's the attribute that is relevant. And that's the phrase you'd choose? Not normal? I don't think so. I think the word "normal" carries baggage which is always seized upon when used by those suspected of bigotry against virtually any other popularly recognized minority group other than the rich. No, you're exactly right. I believe this is a case of crony capitalism. 8 restaurant owners do not want to compete so they use the government to help create zoning laws using the property tax excuse. The mobile food vendors do not have air conditioned seating facilities, rest rooms and etc. The advantage to each business model is obvious and not conflicting. It's flimsy. It's discouraging to this young man, although he seems pretty determined. I brought this up as an example of vilification, not taxation. But it's not a good one, I was just a little peeved about it and wanted to find an excuse to share it. There should be no better place on earth more welcome to this young man's intentions than here in America. But we have so many rules created by bureaucrats and small handfuls of crony capitalists that new business and thus new upward mobility seem to be largely unwelcome and discouraged. Yes they do. Guys like Romney have been infusing capital for motivated people with no money. Their risky pursuits for profits provide secure pursuits for labor profits. Because rich people take risk and build businesses and infuse capital, I can get a job where I don't have to take any risks to make a living. I have a choice that I didn't have before. If these businesses did not exist, I would have to grow my own food, slaughter my own cows, spend disproportionate amounts of time trying to acquire resources, hustling every day. That sucks. I'd rather just clock in and clock out and get groceries on the way home after a simple eight hour day. Most of the modern advancements you enjoy was made possible by people with more money than you and I. Look around you, how much of that was made possible by some poor guy in their garage? If there were no rich people, or groups of rich people, no concentration of wealth, then advancements and products that require such investment would never have been realized. Their money doesn't sit in a shoe box. When it's working for them it's working for you too. Another important reminder: when they're money is working for them, they have no access to it. And yet another: when they're money is working for them, it is money that was already taxed before. After all, where does the money come from that one invests in capital gains, investment based profits? I wish I could take more time and get to all these posts, but the quality of my posts are already deteriorating trying to rush through this. You'd think I'd have more time now that I work for the government. Yes, seriously.
  7. I'm extremely confused. How did we get from their inclusion to everyone else's exclusion? Where did the word "only" come from? Dick Morris is speaking to a certain segment of the population, which you have "warned" about. How does that equate to "only the wishes of the rich"? Seriously, this is weird man. If someone comes out to warn low income earners that Bush is about to raise taxes on them, wouldn't you find it strange for me to come by and say "careful, he's only speaking to a certain part of the population. And you can't have tax policy based solely on the wishes of the working poor"? Hopefully you would say, "ParanoiA, dude, you're totally awesome and I could never be as cool as you, but nobody said anything about "only" listening to the working poor - we're just talking to them at this particular moment since this concerns them". The failure to stand for others liberties facilitates divide and conquer. Grouping ourselves into mini-collectives "fighting" for some narrow set of rights is the direct result of disrespect for others choices and freedoms. It's folded into our culture now, probably permanently, that your political and personal opinion be exactly the same - a unification of your personal will and what you demand of others. People seem to think that laws should reflect their personal choices and they have no duty to anyone else to provide room for different choices. I didn't know Ben Franklin was a fear monger. Learn something new everyday. I feel bad for upcoming entrepreneurs that are discouraged observing a group being increasingly vilified, and now increasingly justified to disproportionately take from. The government is certainly trying very hard to keep this young man from upward mobility into that class.
  8. ParanoiA

    Yay, GUNS!

    There is a disturbing insistence on the ideal here. If I can't have the ideal hero, then let the slaughter continue? I must have a "properly trained" hero in the midst of a tragedy taking place? This is where idealism becomes a suicide pact. I would happily welcome a 14 year old with a .357 in that room. Everyone is running *away* from the gunman, which suggests a certain amount of buffer area around him. Even if folks are running in all directions, such that my bullet misses him and travels right in the direction of innocents - I firmly believe that less people will be shot by said 14 year old accidentally while *not being* aimed at than will be shot deliberately by the gunman while directly *being* aimed at. Put another way (as Pangloss used to say) go ahead and fire off rounds in a crowded room and see if you get more people when aiming for them or if you get more when not aiming for them. The non-ideal hero is not aiming at the innocent folks. Some of the greatest American heroes were not ideal. The revolutionary war was fought with a pretty non-ideal, quite untrained army against an arguably ideal army for the time. And they still won. This non-ideal army and it's inability to stand between the people and the English caused many Americans their lives in raids and seizures - including Americans that did not ask for war and did not want war. Tragedies demand action, which inherently carries risk. We would like people to be perfect, but it's unrealistic and extremely dangerous to society to reject any reaction to tragic events that is not ideal.
  9. May I make a suggestion? Go to the expense of an actual gun safe, 10 gauge steel, at least 1" diameter bolts on all *four* sides of the door. It will cost a couple grand, but it's worth it. We keep our guns in a real gun safe now. If you remember when I got robbed, someone stole my previous 20 gauge shotgun out of my pretend Wal-mart gun safe and who knows if they used it on someone? I have a responsibility to society to be sure my weapon is secure. If it really was, then it couldn't have been stolen. That's on me. I should have gone to more trouble to be sure that safe was secure for at least the average robbery attempt. We have kids, and they way we dealt with this is the safe stays locked until we go to bed. I dial it open, but I don't open it. At this point, if I need my 12 gauge shotgun with shells designed for home defense, I can easily access my safe without fumbling the combination. Since the inside of the safe serves as home base for my keys, wallet, phone and all that, there is no "forgetting" to lock the safe each morning. This does not remedy the infamous evening time home invasion. But, it's far more likely a child will get their hands on your gun by accident than you being faced with a home invasion so I cannot justify leaving the safe open in the evenings (not to mention of course, it ruins the whole point of having a safe). In the event of a home invasion, we plan on throwing anything and everything out of the windows of our house, as many as we can while screaming our fool heads off. I want my yard to be littered with glass and debris all over the yard in a matter of seconds. With screaming weirdos, broken open windows and commotion like that, I don't think they're going to stay long. They can't really hang out and terrorize people when they're seen and heard from the street. Just my two cents.
  10. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_they_came%E2%80%A6 - I sure hope someone unlike you is still left to take up for you when they come for your crap. Way to stand up for liberty for all. Of course, as it was a major concern at the outset that when the people realized they could simply vote themselves money then that would herald the end of the republic. You just have to get a potential difference of money and minority on one side, and bigotry and majority on the other and viola! That's what we have today. Rationalizing hating a minority (rich) and then using that rationale to take their property. We have a rich history of rationalization and hatred in this country. Another example is the xenophobia and bigotry we see associated with employing people in "foreign" countries. Here, the liberals and democrats, and even some republicans, actually have a problem with someone here hiring a destitute poor person in another country, who doesn't look quite like them. Our GDP per capita, per wiki, rests at $48,387 while India's, a popular outsourcing destination, currently sits as $1,389 - that's 35 times less. We are ranked 16th in the world by that measure compared to India's 140th, almost at the bottom. They are ridiculously poor. Yet, liberals and democrats are free to spread the hate on this and disparage anyone who hires a foreigner. So much hate, too few bullets. First rule of propaganda: Dehumanize your enemy. Your are demonstrating previously mentioned bigotry right here. Merely because of their income, they are not "normal" people. You have taken 1 single attribute, out of thousands about a person, and used that 1 single attribute to group and label them as non-normal. Seriously, it's as if you believe no one deserves representation unless they are a majority. People with incomes roughly 5 times and 3 times the national median income are *people* dude. And in America, everyone is represented - not just the majority, not just token minority groups - but *everyone*. They are a minority group when grouping and labeling by monetary means only. That's it. But hatred is resilient, I'm confident they'll continue to be treated unfairly and always arbitrarily grouped as "rich" and perfectly ok to hate. He got Bill Clinton elected twice and served as his political adviser, the "feel your pain" president; the man considered the first "black" president. He is the architect of Clinton's Third Way policies. I'm not sure he's the one poorly educated. But he is an asshole, just like any other liberty denying prick in this country. And another one... You all do realize that minorities are people too? That there's other people in the world besides the "majority"? Why are you surprised that someone besides the precious majority should get some air time? Nobody matters but the average? You are revealing your bias against a minority group here. They aren't worth talking about, apparently, unless you're talking about taking their stuff? If anyone else takes up for them in any way, you are apparently dumbfounded because they are not "the average"? Is it your view then that it be weird for someone "not average" to speak or be spoken to, or about? I'm genuinely curious why two of you thought it relevant than he wasn't speaking about a majority. Is there any reason gay people should not be taken up for, I mean, they only make up about 4% of the country, according to ABC News. I'm assuming in the interest of consistency and equitable treatment you would certainly criticize anyone speaking out for this measly 4% as nowhere near the average. You mean that part in the beginning when he says "if you and your spouse make $250,000 or more per year, here's what's going to happen" - is that the part where he "pretends to speak for all Americans"? (emphasis mine) I've gotten a lot out of this thread already. The psychology of in-group/out-group is always fascinating, especially in this subject area and a couple of you have betrayed the mind of the bigot very well in your writing. I look forward to your inevitable denials and moral equivalencies.
  11. Specious, prolific argument from ignorance. Notice how the argument is framed without any distinction between law (force) and free will (liberty). Those who make this argument in this way think laws codify all of our values, and that values are only recognized when legally forced. They cannot separate their personal preferences from political force. Expect vanilla ice cream to eventually be illegal when the majority prefers chocolate, at some point in the future. Society handles affection and personal space exactly how libertarians expect for personal property, happiness, personal choices..etc . Society respects the personal sovereignty of others quite well in terms of intimacy. No one is allowed to touch someone else just because they want to – coercion is not welcomed nor allowed in this case, and is illegal, but rather requires consent. Just try patting the bottom of a beautiful blonde standing in line, or give a random stranger a back rub and see how strict and severe humans are about their personal space. Yet, we would never then misrepresent them and make the argument they are anti-social, hate other people, or are affectionless and solitary. The insistence of mutual consent is not conflated and spun in such ways. Libertarians extend this same respect to property and happiness. They insist on mutual consent to trade, not coercion, since their property was earned, not given to them by the state – generally by providing labor and mining wealth. And that doesn’t imply they have no intention of helping people any more than mutual consent for intimacy implies no intention of affection or social interaction. One does not follow the other. The error of the critique of libertarianism by outsiders is that leftist ideologies typically use government to execute virtue – a nationalized set of altruistic values that everyone is forced to honor – whereas libertarians pursue virtue individually. This is why you see dumb statements like the above – rejection of compassion, justice, civic responsibility, honesty, decency, humility, respect survival of the poor, weak and vulnerable – all are assumed to be ignored by libertarians since libertarians won’t agree to *coercion* to meet these ends. If it isn’t framed in law, then we must not wish to do it at all – so the logic goes. Very strange. The immorality of government mandated charity forces the libertarian to redirect his altruism resources to causes he does not prioritize above his own. While I may prefer to help starving children in China, the immoral state confiscates resources I have worked to earn to give to simply impoverished people in America, that may not be starving at all, and have a home, a car, food to eat and live at a much higher standard of living relative to impoverished Chinese families. At any rate, to the libertarian, their need is perceived to be dwarfed by others in the world , and the libertarian must divert his charitable resources from causes he is morally driven to, to causes he perceives to be of less importance in terms of priority. His freedom of choice, denied. Liberals and moderates use their government to provide the altruism members of a modern society need, and thus cannot escape the paradigm in order to properly represent the ideology of libertarians. Libertarians and conservatives take it upon themselves to provide the altruism and resent the coercion by the state to divert their precious resources to state endorsed charities, instead of individually chosen charity. To impose a national morality that confiscates individual’s property for state recognized need is immoral, unethical and absolutely causes unnecessary suffering for any entity of need not recognized, nor realized by the state yet realized by humanity. Liberals and moderates will need to explain their moral superiority in better terms than blind nationalism. That American children and families are in need is not an argument for their preference over others in need about the world. Exactly. America did not achieve its greatness under a specialized, centralized value system beaten into the citizenry - it achieved it's greatness with liberty. This "single-minded" ideology promotes more diversity and more freedom than any mixture of centralized, state mandated value systems. Because all of the functions these multi-minded ideologies perform are pooled, specialized, sterile systems of repetition. Libertarians believe values are best left to individuals, not nations. See History of Slavery in the United States or Women’s Suffrage or Gay Marriage for examples of why. Governments concerning themselves with the particulars of morality sterilize the diversity of morality. Governments concerned with defending the particulars of personal liberty catalyze liberty and thus diversity in morality, and everything else a person can be different about. Observations of nature teach us the value of generalism over specialism. Homogeneity is exactly what the universe needs to get rid of humans – specialists unable to adapt to the scale of changes heading toward human kind right now. Global warming, impending overpopulation, meltdown of quasi-socialist-capitalist governments…etc.
  12. That's what I'm trying to get you to explain. You interpret coercive behavior abritrarily from unfortunate and I'm not getting how you draw that distinction. If I'm paying someone what you believe to be low wages in a job they don't desire to do, then according to your previous comment they have been coerced. My point is that the market - YOU - coerced me, the entrepreneur when you refused to pay more than 2 bucks for a cheeseburger. You make me compete with other cheeseburger businesses and you take your business to them when I raise my prices. This makes me have to find ways to cut the costs of producing cheeseburgers so I can get you to buy them from me. Aside from dreaming up efficient changes in the production process, which is always done regardless and only goes as far as the human imagination can take it, this means finding the cheapest labor and capital. Cheap capital means the labor used to mine it or produce it also uses cheaper labor. If that's all coercive, then stop it. Stop coercing my cheeseburger business lemur. Agree to pay the higher prices for my cheeseburgers and give me the room to pay higher prices for labor and capital. So let me get this straight....if I really like chocolate and I'm addicted, then everyone who makes chocolate is now exploiting my addiction? I'm addicted to eating, and I will die if I do not. Isn't every food manufacturer exploiting my dependency on food? They are using the threat of death to coerce property from me, no? Denying what I desire based on your judgment of the merit of my choices (ie..chocolate addiction presumably "bad") is immoral. So, those workers refusing to sell or make chocolate for me based on their interpretation of exploiting my addiction, is immoral. Therefore, their only choice is to be immoral by refusing chocolate production for me, or immoral by "exploiting" my addiction of chocolate by selling it to me. That whole problem only exists if the workers presume what's "good" for me, and attempt to judge my choices - which will inevitably conflict with my desires in life. If I wish for a short life of cigarettes, chocolate and liquor then that is my desire and no one has any objective moral position to say that's "bad". Seems to me, this exploitation concept requires defining lines of "good" and "bad". Satiating what I desire, is exactly the kind of "exploitation" I wish to have, over and over. Thank you sir, may I have another? Then share with us, that point. I don't see it. What I see, is people that have very little to offer society but want a lot of things from that society. They won't make things and sell them in order to be independent. They won't create their own wealth. They find it extremely appealing to do very simple labor for others instead of all the trouble required to be an entrepreneur or just live off of the land. And that fits the conditions because that's why they have very little offer society in the first place - they won't go to the trouble to achieve economic independence. That's why 40 year olds work at fast food and cashier jobs. They value their off time too much to put in effort (like education and trade skills) to increase their value to society so they can trade their labor, or wealth they create, to others for a higher return. I don't reject the possibility of unfairness, I reject the conditions you and others use to define it. I define unfairness in terms of collusion with government, or any exclusion from the same rules the rest of the market must follow. When company A gets special treatment via bribes, or if they get excused from Obamacare for instance, while the rest of us still have to comply, then that is unfairness. When the rules are level and no one is excused from them, then I think you have a much better framework for fairness. Possibly because capital is owned? Because it's an unworkable solution? If I understand your question, and it's very possible I do *not*, you're essentially asking why you can't stop by your local auto shop and just start working on broken automobiles until you feel like leaving, then drop by the phone company and do some call routing for a couple of hours and then go home and watch TV. That sounds pretty damned unworkable to me. Somebody owns that auto shop - and people who spend lots of time there might not appreciate you stopping by and just jumping in, misusing equipment, breaking things because your enthusiasm trumps your skills and abilities, leaving someone without a car for much longer and a shop left to repair crap you broke. With you and everyone else coming and going at their leisure, how would you coordinate and give time estimates for repairs to people? Last but should have been first, stocks utilize companies that buy the stock even when no one else wants to buy it. That's how you're able to sell stock in a moment's notice, regardless of searching for and finding a buyer. To do this in labor, is to have people who will agree to provide all the labor that isn't being provided by voluntary "drop-in-and-work-when-you-feel-like-it types". So, here again, we have people "coerced" into labor again - unable to just do things when they feel like. Not to mention the incredible lack of efficiency and output and predictable service. A society like this will fix your car whenever enough people happen to stop by and fix cars. No ETA. Just drop by ever now and then see if it's done. If this is something you've thought about, and I know you're definitely the kind of guy that thinks things through, then you might want to share how you think this would work. It sounds interesting, despite my counter points. I'm not sure about that. I'll have to think about it. It looks pretty on the surface, but I'm hearing sinister music in the background. My first question would be, which one trumps the other? I could greatly increase my freedom if I could just own a person and put them to work for me. That would maximize my freedom, yet reduce the number of people enjoying freedom. So is it better that my freedom be reduced then so we have more people being free, but not as maximized per person? In that context, it would seem the free market is already maximizing both. There are millions of products and services done by businesses in buildings - my "garage" was referring to your property. Furniture, cabinetry, auto repair, bottled water - whatever you can think of. No one is stopping you - except for maybe licensing and zoning laws, which can be unfair (an example of collusion by big business to force out competitors by requiring gobs of cash to enter a market). And that doesn't even cover service jobs that don't require real estate of your own, like hanging sheetrock, mowing lawns, selling lemonade... If you can't achieve these things, it's because you can't get people to give you money for them. How is that everyone else's fault? How does this create unfairness? And none of this legitmates anything. It simply establishes the reality that people - you, lemur - and everyone else spends their money on things they want, try to get the most they can for as little as possible. If they can get something better from business A, for a better price, then business B won't get the sale. If you can't build things in your garage that people will buy, then it's not coercion that sent you out looking for people to buy your labor service - you and the saturated market you are participating in, in the case of cheap labor. Again, this all comes back to complaining that people won't just behave assymetrical to nature. People won't just ignore price, or quality, or workmanship simply because it would be neato to support someone creating wealth from their own, personal labor. Are you doing that? ________________________________________________________________________ Over the years here, I've tried to show how you are all a part of the system we criticize. That we, you and me, your friends, your family, your co-workers - all contribute to the problems you complain about. You behave exactly like the rich. You make the same decisions as the rich. You are just as selfish and profit minded as they are with your labor. You cut costs and buy the cheapest this and that, and you could care less who it harms. You only do work for the money, or else you'd do it at home. Every complaint I've ever read about rich people, is duplicated in the behavior of the poor and middle class. All of this is maneuvering for social power since you perceive that you lost in the market, despite what your standard of living has to say about it. We give excuses left and right for why we can change the rules for ourselves - the "working" class, and how that's not the same as business changing the rules for themselves, like collusion with government using laws, licensing and etc. You invest in 401K, then complain about corporations and their profits - profits going into your retirement accounts. You aren't complaining when you receive the benefits, only when you notice someone else got more benefits. Same when entrepreneurs lose their ass, no one else is offended they didn't get to give up some of their income in that failure. You bitch that money buys elections, then you elect politicians that spend lots of money on the election. You know how you know an elected official is bought and paid for? When they spend more money getting the job, than what it pays. Why are you creating the problem to then turn around and complain about it? Why are you excused from your own behavior? Why are you excused from your contribution to the problems? I stopped excusing myself a long time ago. A liberal friend of mine once said "Be the change you want to see". That stuck with me. Essentially, it's practice what you preach. There's my soapbox themed departure. Pangloss is gone. He was treated like absolute crap here. I'm appalled when I read how he was treated in these threads, and not taken up for by any of the staff. The comments are still there. Pangloss, and his eternal diplomatic centrism, took a lot of shit before he would fling anything back at all. The most fair minded, lefty-conservative on this forum and the lefties still treated him like a punching bag. There's a few on the staff that I have a lot of respect for and I think have been incredibly fair, as you'd expect from a mod. Cap'n, Skeptic, Phi for all, and etc.. And there's those of you that did not take up for him at all, and allowed post after post of childish, abusive petulant behavior, particularly from a certain puppy of a certain admin here... Take it easy guys. I really do appreciate the help I received from many of you and the patience you've shown me over the years. The loss of Pangloss is unacceptable and I won't participate in the forum that encourages it. Most of us come and go in phases, but this is permanent. This is called being the change I want to see. Stand up for good people that deserve it, even if that means sitting down.
  13. Well, I can certainly "see" voltage now. I understand how amount of charge determines the strength of the field, and how the position of a charge placed in that field determines the electric potential on that charge, in that spot - which is measured in terms of potential energy per charge, Joules/Coulomb. One Volt equals one joule/coulomb. I can see how pushing a charge against the field creates the "pressure" we exploit in circuits. The potential difference is the difference in electric potential between the initial and final locations in the field - the work performed by the electrochemical solution in the battery. The battery, a series of cells, is designed to create an electric potential difference between two points. A 12 volt battery is designed to require about 12 Joules/coulomb of work (energy) to push positive charge toward the high energy potential, providing for 12 Joules/Coulomb of work to an external circuit. All of this has created a numerous list of questions I would pester a poor electronics/physics teacher to their death with....but I'm patient and will wait until I learn about the actual parts and operation of the battery before I go down that road. One question that has bugged me from the beginning though....since we know a voltage requires a source field and reference point within that field, the position, then what is the reference point for the claim that shuffling our feet on the carpet creates thousands of volts of charge on our bodies? It's only that many volts with respect to a certain position in the field emanating from the charge on my body - where is this position they're assuming?
  14. Thanks. I think that does make sense, yes. When thinking about a positive field, and a positive charge, it's easy to see the extreme for high PE being as close as you can get to the source. But when you change that to a negative field, then you're high PE is as far as you can get from the source, which isn't as easy to see in the extreme - the threshold is not so visibly obvious.
  15. You all are really helping me out here, not sure if you realize that or not. Much thanks, sincerely. Kind of going back to a question I had earlier that Swansont responded to, but now I have an example. Fairly easy I think...if I have a negatively charged field then a positive charge would be drawn toward the field. So, as I increase the distance I increase the potential energy of the positive charge. But this is what seems so odd, it's as if I can just increase this distance and just keep increasing the potential energy - as if positive charges in Europe are loaded with potential energy from negative fields in Alaska. At that distance, we should have some serious potential energy.
  16. Quick question...why does the direction of the electric field matter? For instance, a positive source charge will direct the electric field "force" outward, yet negative charges will be attracted toward the positive source charge. Any description of force will be attractive, not repulsive, so what is the point of directionality here? (I realize a positive test charge will be directed outward from the positive source of the field, but again that seems to ignore field direction in favor of charge association - I don't see how field direction carries any consequence).
  17. That doesn't explain why it's unfair. That only explains that it's unfortunate that someone should have to sacrifice one thing for another thing. I would like to go to QT and get a slurpee, but I'd also like to watch Southpark. I will have to sacrifice one for the other. Who is being unfair to who? Is Southpark being unfair for airing their show while I want a slurpee? Is QT being unfair because they won't deliver a slurpee to my house? Am I being unfair because I cannot split myself in two? Firms don't coerce anyone into doing undesirable labor, rather firms will pay for labor on the same terms you will pay for a candy bar. Are we coercing Hershey's to let those chocolate wonders go for under a buck? We sure won't pay for them when they're 5 bucks, so apparently we're shaking down the chocolate factory. Their monetary allocation for labor is only dependent upon generating an income for the entrepreneur, just as the production worker gets an income. Since they take the risk - and I note that no one is bitching about how unfair it is that they don't get to share in the failures - they get more flexibility on the reward, though ultimately still checked by competition. If competition drives price down, they're stuck on how much they can spend on labor and capital and still provide income for factors of production. Without any one factor of production, you have no firm. Since I'm stuck on chocolate at the moment..how many chocolate firms do not pay income to the entrepreneur? There's no legal requirement for an owner to profit. So how come they don't exist? They should be able to beat *ALL* competition since they do not require entrepreneurial profits. Where is this chocolate paradise of fairness? Let me be clear...there is nothing sacred about labor. I repeat, your labor is not special. It's just what you bring to the table to trade with other people when you have nothing else they might want. Nobody is coercing you for your labor, rather your labor is a part of the supply and demand reality and it gets no special treatment. If one guy does nuclear engineering, he'll make a ton of money and the companies that hire him will probably feel like it's not fair. If one million guys do nuclear engineering, they won't make much money at all. Same as all goods and services. I don't have to work for anyone, I can mine my wealth right out of the land myself. I choose not to. Who is coercing who? Fairness is a moral imported in the context of an objective, predictable system. It is imported into the system precisely for its ability to inflate value without adding anything tangible. Anyone on the short end of a stick will use moral appeals to get a better grip. Meanwhile, what do they do to add or create new value to their labor and skills? Are they paying attention to supply and demand and maneuvering themselves for higher pay? If they're more interested in loving their job than pay, then are they doing that? Or are they expecting someone else to ignore supply and demand and pay them what they want doing exactly what they like to do? Sounds more like we're defining unfair as unfortunate. If that's a "that's life" argument, I'll defend it. I'm far from done. Why do people need....now there's a can of worms. I don't know why people need to watch American Idol, but they do. I would imagine the answer to your second question lies in productive efficiency. Division of labor might be a subject to explore here. Am I supposed to build my own house? Kill and cultivate all of my own food? When do I get to build my own cell phone? You giving soldering lessons? I'd like to get a better idea of what you're suggesting, because obviously I'm interpreting it as a kind of Luddite-meets-noble-savage fantasy. Yes, I have. In fact, this is one my arguments about retirement. I watched my Grandmother get soaked out of her piddly SS checks with taxes and the like. There are a number of people in the country that do extremely small scale cattle raising just to cover property taxes and insurance for their homes out in the country. But the point is, in my opinion, that's all you're owed by anybody. You have no 'right' to demand society give you something, so I see no issue about fairness when you don't receive anything. People don't have to submit to the terms of employers for basic necessities, that's merely the most popular choice since they don't want to build something in their garage and sell it. They don't want to synthesize labor and capital into goods and services on their own and they find it very easy to just show up and provide unskilled, not-very-damn-special labor for them. The problem is when they expect to be paid greater than supply and demand realities. Freedom doesn't mean that it's free to live and people just give you shit (sacrificing their freedom) it means you're free to make a living for yourself. You are free to attempt to convince anyone, anywhere to give you stuff. Most people won't though. They are free to not give you stuff. They then, generally, require you to do something for them in exchange for something for you. If you have a problem with fairness in our economy, maybe you should start by paying double for everything you buy so you can start leading by example.
  18. So at what point does one become unfair as one gets rich? The one millionth sale of that widget they mass produce that people demanded for their happiness? The return on a financial investment that company used to loan money to people to buy houses? When they splurged and bought a yacht that paid the salaries of their employees to build it? When did their equal access and equal protection under the same exact laws create unfairness for someone else? Do you pay more for things than they cost? Do you forego the sale price and pay full price so those workers get a fair wage? When you're comparing products, you don't compare prices right? Making cheap things requires cheap means. That means labor and materials - materials that are also fabricated with labor. And you're not unfair, so surely you wouldn't do the same thing businesses and corporations do, right? People get rich making other people happy. That's the only way the private sector can do it. No one is prevented from selling stuff they make, going to get a job working for someone else, living off of the land out in the boonies...no one is prevented from hunting and gathering or trading with other humans. It's all open. It's called freedom. You can starve too, if you want. I'm not sure how you twist "fair" to suggest that taking from someone who will to give to someone who won't, is reducing unfairness. The only people getting rich at the expense of others' happiness, is voters that use the republic to mine money they can't earn by making other people happy. And I agree. It's grossly unfair to reward poor people off the backs of those who create and promote voluntary trades with mutual satisfaction. I never thanked a tax collector after business. I always thank the QT guy when I buy my coffee and gas in the morning. I even thanked a room full of people after agreeing to over a hundred thousand dollar purchase - which is appropriate since I only had about 2 grand at the table. People with money are constantly carrying people without. It works out for us. I get a house, they get a profit. People without are constantly making excuses for themselves for being without, and the most popular direction is externally. Class envy is school yard antics. It works because personal accountability and honest self appraisal just takes too much discipline and creates discomfort for the ego. Awe...poor ego. If you can't make it in America...man, you can't make it anywhere. As for the OP. America is only as much a Plutocracy as you allow it to be. The rich have means to amplify their speech. Legally, that's all they got. Collusion happens, which is illegal and I believe is rampant. Regulations enable that entire racket. But voters are independent of control by central privateers. We always hear people going on about so and so "buying" the election, and all this...but it's a bit disingenuous. No one paid me to do squat at the voting booth - otherwise I may have. (j/k) No, I think it was Hamilton but I'm not sure, who said something to the effect that all governments boil down to aristocracies (not quite the same thing I realize, but close enough) because people naturally pay more attention when they have skin in the game. The nature of the masses to be largely apathetic and disinterested leaves mainly those who have something to lose and can't afford to ignore their government.
  19. Hey, your description matches nicely. This issue just so happened to be included on the bit on conductive charging... Like you and Swansont have said, real objects are conductive and insulative on a sliding scale. It sounds like putting a wire on the surface of an insulator is tempting those electrons in that spot to make the jump for bigger real estate. I just need to keep in mind that I will not get a balanced system between the insulator and the conductor like I would between two conductors - the electrons will not redistribute uniformly so the two objects share the excess charge. This maintains our distinction between the two types of materials.
  20. That does make sense. I'm working on that now too. I'm really enjoying this Physics Classroom site. So far, it's really good about restating ideas as they add on to them. It's really helped a lot with electrostatics, so I'm going to stay on this through to electric fields and potential and maybe it will spell out this electron movement for me. I don't mind carrying on with positive charge flow once I get a firm grip on this part. Both points noted. So, just to clarify, are we saying that a *perfect* insulator would not lose its charge without another act of friction? Because I'm trying to imagine grabbing a piece of copper wire and touching it to the charged ballon and the other end to ground - and if the balloon were a perfect insulator, it should remain charged since we can't *transfer* charge that way. Even if, in reality, we may be able to neutralize the balloon that way. The Physics Classroom has been good about mentioning humid air as a decent conductor, and how it normally absorbs most of our excess charges, like shuffling our feet across the carpet. I was trying to envision how air particles, or moisture, are interacting with the surface of the balloon in order to neutralize the charge.
  21. I will certainly try. I'm trying to conceptualize positive charge in terms of electron movement, say, in a battery cell. I can understand the "concept" of moving a positive charge against the field toward the positive source of the field, thereby increasing its potential energy. But I would only see a positive charge move against the field in a solution I guess, because you can't move ions in metals and that's the only way I know of a positive charge "moving" against a field. Otherwise, how does positive charge move? (In electrostatics positive charge redistributing itself was *actually* electrons redistributing themselves, so electrons are moving despite our concept of positive charge moving). Ok, so that's inside the cell. Now, I have the same questions for outside of the cell, powering a circuit. If I have lots of positive charge, again, how am I moving positive charge over wire? We can't do that, and we know that electrons are moving, not positively charged ions nor protons. So I'm stuck again trying to figure out how electrons are moving using a concept that describes the movement of positive charge. I guess that's what I'm struggling with now. Trying to work out electron movement in the context of positive charge movement. It's making it very difficult to grasp. But I can't just forget that electrons are moving around in metals, not positive charges, so I'm also a little frustrated. I'm guessing there's a good reason for all of this though.... Here's another quickie that's been bugging me: We can induce charge in two insulators by using friction - like a balloon and animal fur. If I remember correctly, rubber has more of an affinity for electrons than animal fur and thus takes on a negative charge while the fur, I would suppose is left with a positive charge. So...how do they lose their charge then? After I'm done sticking the balloon to the wall to wow the kiddos, how exactly does the balloon lose its charge and eventually fall to the ground? If only conductors allow electrons to move about their surface, and it took an act of friction to charge these insulators, then how do they casually become neutral again?
  22. And we certainly do, that's for sure. But since I'm refreshing my knowledge on a subject I have never applied, and haven't even looked at for about 12 years, I'm determined this time to really grasp how the particles are moving. I took these things for granted before, assumed this and that for convencience, and I'm not satisfied with that anymore. At this point, I feel like I can "see" the potential energy when we push charge against the field toward the source, but so far I only get this when I think of "charge" as positive and negative units - now I need to understand it in terms of electron movement. For instance, if I touch a positively charged conductive object to a neutrally charged conductive material (let's just stick with metals), conceptually I can think of that positive charge equally distributing itself across the surface of these materials. But, positive charges don't move in metal, instead the electrons in the neutral object will be attracted to the positively charged object and they will move to provide the equal distribution (since they repel and would like to be farther apart from each other and were just granted a whole new wing to move into). The end result is the same, but the actual movement is different from the concept of positive charges moving around. So, in thinking of an electric field, we are always directed away from a positive source and toward a negative source - and since it would not require work to move an electron toward the positive source (opposites attract) then it would seem to require moving positive charge toward the positive source to create potential energy that can be used to do work on a circuit. Unlike the simpler electrostatic example using conductive materials, I'm not seeing how to readjust the electric field concept to realize how it works in terms of electron movement, or what's actually moving around.
  23. Fair enough, but is the first part correct about electric fields? The strength of the field determining the work required to move the charge to the high energy potential? Little steps... The other thing that's bothering me now is the movement of positive charge in metals. I see now that the electrochemical solution in battery cells are doing the work to push the ions to the high energy potential (Mr Skeptic mentioned this too) and so when we provide a conductive path, positive charge moves to the low energy potential doing work on the circuit in the process. But we can't move ions in metals, and we can't move protons either (which would change the substance in the process I'm guessing even if it were possible) - so how are we moving a positive charge? Just one of many follow up thorns that arrest my progress...
  24. Cool, thanks for the confirmation. So, looking at electric potential, I notice that so far the rate has been arbitrarily assigned for a spot in the field. The example I used was a mirror image really of what I've read; just assuming that a certain spot contains a given electric potential, J/C and then reasoning out what's going on, doin' the math. That was great. But how is that rate created? The field strength? It seems intuitive now that field strength would determine how many Joules of work would be required to move a single unit of charge toward the source or the high energy potential. Seems it would be that way for all field forces.
  25. Oh crap, I think I might actually be getting this now. Electric potential = PE/Q. The volt = Joule/Coulomb of charge. The volt is the unit of measure for electric potential. An electric field will be in the direction of a negative charge as that's the direction a positive charge would be impelled when exposed to the field. A positive charge will gain potential energy as you move it against the field toward the source because it requires work to move it this way and the amount of work it takes is the potential energy - it does not require work for that charge to move in the same direction as the field, but of course it would lose its potential energy (although energy must be conserved...I'll need to revisit that later, it's already starting to bother me) So, electric potential is based on location within the field, not the amount of charge - potential energy will be the product of the electric potential and the actual charge. Electric potential is a rate of how many joules per unit of charge in a given spot in the field. If I place a 2 coulomb charged object in a location within a field with an electric potential of 24 Joules/Coulomb, then that object has 48 Joules of potential energy at that location. That's 48 Joules that can do work in the direction of the field when "released" (and should have taken 48 Joules of work to get to that location in the field). I hope that's close. I have to quit for the night, and I'm not near there, but I think I have a better handle on some of this.
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