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leftyandproud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 12:19 AM
Original message
H-E-L-P me debate!!!! need a response!
Edited on Wed Apr-28-04 12:24 AM by leftyandproud
this bastard John Galt is pissing me off...I don't know how to argue with this asshole's points.

and he's being civil which makes it more difficult to respond! grrrrr


How can I argue against this? What are some ways to prove government DOES create jobs??????/

I'm also having trouble with his living wage logic...seems to make sense, but I still think we need a living wage. how can I argue that it doesn't hurt the shop owner?

HELP!!!

http://www.conservativeunderground.com/forum/phpBB2/vie...
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kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 12:26 AM
Response to Original message
1. If they give a huge grant to a military contractor, for example....
Boeing or whomever, chances are they will hire new employees. Government spending can create more jobs and spur the economy during recessionary times. Of course, the military is now counted with the unemployment numbers since the days of Reagan.
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ewagner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 12:27 AM
Response to Original message
2. I've run into this argument before
It's a favorite of the neocons.....

First, government creates jobs by creating the environment in which jobs can be created...through tax policy, public/private initatives etc. When I was a Mayor, we wanted to redevelop the downtown, so we used government funds to acquire derelict buildings, demolished them and sold the land to a developer for $1 for a new hotel. It created about 35 or 50 new jobs and the spin-off jobs from additional retail sails skyrocketed.

Government also translates a vision of the future which can either put an end to outmoded industries and create new ones. Example: Eisenhower virtually destroyed the railroads and built the trucking industry with creation of the national interstate system. Another example was the Space zProgram of the '60s. It created a Space Industry which had so many spin-offs that we can't even count them all.

And then there was the internet. Originally set up for defense communications but look at what it has become today because government backed it and allowed it to flourish.

Hope some of this helps
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rumguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 12:33 AM
Response to Original message
3. much of what the government does creates jobs
the government employees people

the police force keeps order

you can go on and on down this avenue of thought, be creative....
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lebkuchen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 12:39 AM
Response to Original message
4. As an aside,
Denmark is the highest taxed country in the world, and has the lowest unemployment. Gee, I wonder how that works~.
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maggrwaggr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 01:13 AM
Response to Original message
5. don't forget tax incentives
and don't forget good old corporate welfare -- the entire military-industrial complex is funded by the government (and therefore us).

Blackwater Security is hiring right now, that's all government money.

Halliburton has several new openings I hear. That's all government money.

Scientific research funded by the federal government creates all KINDS of new technologies that are then capitalized on by the private sector.

Then there's good ol' FDR new deal stuff. Pour money into the economy, whether for roads, or dams or WCC projects, things tend to happen.

That's basic kensyan economics.
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bobbyboucher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 01:18 AM
Response to Original message
6. Ask the moron to name one business/industry that isn't
affected by government action. One. There isn't a business or industry that operates today that doesn't owe a huge debt to government in one way or another. The whole goddamn shootin' match DEPENDS upon government, not DESPITE government.
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Guaranteed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 01:22 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. In particular the DEFENSE industry. nt
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sadiesworld Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 01:24 AM
Response to Original message
8. Yikes! The pugs are recommending Thomas Sowell.
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strategery blunder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 01:30 AM
Response to Original message
9. This Auntie Pinko article might help
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sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 01:45 AM
Response to Original message
10. Compare 1978 - 2004
Minimum wage in 1978 was $2.80. It hasn't even doubled since then. My car insurance was $25.00 a month for FULL coverage. My house cost $25,000. I could see a doctor for $10.00. I could get a pair of GOOD shoes for $15.00. NOW, tell me how minimum wage affects the cost of living.

It sounds very logical that if wages go up, cost of goods goes up or people get laid off. But, in fact, that isn't what has happened. Owners make more and stockholders make more. The proof is in the income disparity statistics.

If workers don't fight for their rights, they won't have any. That's the truth of it.
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troublemaker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 01:46 AM
Response to Original message
11. The raw number of jobs is irrelevant
Edited on Wed Apr-28-04 01:47 AM by troublemaker
A living wage standard would indeed cost jobs and be defacto charity. But so what? There's no magic right answer... it's a matter of drawing arbitrary lines based on one's values. Different values imply different trade-offs.

The purpose of jobs isn't to keep people busy, but to provide a living. Eliminating the minimum wage entirely would create more jobs but diminish the number of people able to make a living.

Thought experiment: If labor costs were a penny a month we could eliminate unemployment in the US out of petty cash. Would that make life in the US better or worse?
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BeHereNow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 01:48 AM
Response to Original message
12. YES, they create jobs!
In other countries!
No doubt about it!
Wanna move to Iraq?
You too, can find a job.
Just not here in the US!
BHN
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BeHereNow Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 01:50 AM
Response to Reply #12
14. Forgot to say-
IF you want a job here in the US-
There is an organizaton looking for...
"a few good men" to "be, all that they can be."
BHN
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orwell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 01:49 AM
Response to Original message
13. Thank God
libsinger, where did the money to create GOVERNMENT jobs come from? You must acknowledge this...that aside from the tremendous amount of money lost through bureaucratic inefficiencies, the bottom line is EVERY PENNY spent by the government was first taken from productive activity in the private sector...It was first siphoned away from those who create REAL jobs and REAL wealth in our society.

Real wealth and real jobs are created both in the public and private sector. What is a road? Is it wealth? Are there jobs in building the road? The money comes from taxpayers. Taxes are the cost of a civil society. Taxes are patriotic. It is taxes that pay and equip the soldiers that so many anti-tax Conservatives cheer. Is the army inefficient at killing?

The job of most in government is simply to confiscate wealth, tansfer it, and find ways to create more government jobs. A limited amount of government is needed, but what we have today is absolutely monstrous...The federal bureacracy has become a terrible parasite on the back of the American worker.

"Government" as a percent of GDP is not unusually high in historical terms. The job of Government is not to confiscate wealth, but rather to provide the framework of a civil society, the courts, the police, the fire departments, regulatory agencies, executive and legislative branches, public education and more, infrastructure investments that contribute to the ability of private enterprise to function. What we have today is not monstrous in historical terms by any means.

It's tentacles extend into every area of the economy today, manipulating and impeding those who create wealth and jobs...and making things more costly for every citizen.

What is your proof of such wild assertions. Is the FDA a tentacle? How about the EPA. Was the Clean Air Act wrong. If so, who is going to pay for the externalities of unchecked pollution. The net health and environmental costs would be far greater in the long run.

Think for a sec...If I want to buy an ice cream cone tomorrow for a dollar, it means I value the mint chocolate chip more than I value the dollar I'll spend for it. It also means the owner of the ice cream shop values my dollar more than he values the ice cream. Let's forget that he already has given three teenagers their first full-time job...forget that he provides a service that makes everyone in the community HAPPY...This isn't good enough. This isn't a real contribution to society according to government, so they must tax him.

This is a straw man argument. The government doesn't tax him because of what his contribution to society is. They tax him for his reliance on infrastructure in a host of ways.

For some reason, they believe he isn't benefiting society, so they MUST step in and interfere with this process. How? There are many ways (taxes, regulation, wage floors, etc). I noticed someone else mentioned a $20 minimum wage. Some governments around the world are actually trying to institute "living wage" of around $12.00 an hour..."How compassionate!" says the left. It may be great for those who are kept on at this new higher wage, but only when you look down the road do you see the real effects of such policies.

If a worker only produces $8.00 per hour in output, a $12.00 "living wage" is a losing proposition for the parlor owner. So what will he do? Perhaps he won't be able to hire an extra person to work weekends, or perhaps he will need to raise prices on cones to stay in business.


There is nothing wrong with setting a minimum wage. What would be counterproductive is setting a minimum/living wage that was too high. The alternative would be the pre 1900's robber baron era. Is child labor off limits in a laissez faire economic environment? If you answer yes you are negating your own argument for governmental (societal) limits on exploitation.

Who knows? The costs must be absorbed somewhere, and usually the harmful effects of government are hidden. One important thing to remember: Government spending has visible beneficiaries and INVISIBLE victims.

Any economic arrangement has both visible and invisible beneficiaries and victims. What participants do when they enter an economic framework is to try to agree to rules that make the system as beneficial as possible for all concerned.

Politicians can point to those who benefit through direct transfers of wealth (those who get the artificially high wages, those who get welfare checks, free tuition/healthcare, etc). They point to these people and say "See! Look how we helped them...How could you oppose this you greedy bastards?" What we DON'T see are the millions invisible victims of these policies...the people who absorb the costs of government. We don't see the consumers who pay higher prices every product...the workers who didn't get the raise they were hoping for...the teenager who didn't get hired on over the weekend at the ice cream parlor because a "living wage" meant the owner could only afford two employees instead of four. We never see these people. They are the invisible victims of government interference in the economy.

The greatest beneficiaries of Government largess are the Corporations and well heeled manipulators who write the laws. They are also the greatest beneficiaries of the infrastructure and defense investments. You just don't choose to look at them because it doesn't suit your worldview.

The costs of Government are the dues to belong to the club, the costs of a civil society. Now we can haggle over the individual expenditures, but to assert that Government is an automatic rip-off is disingenuous at best.

Their plight makes it easy for the left to rail against "the rich"...to push through tax increases for "the rich", and then blame the "greed" of employers when prices rise, or when layoffs start happening. It's a very convenient setup if you ask me. Tax companies...regulate them...create an artificial "living wage"...forcing companies to raise prices, cut pay, or lay off workers to avoid bankruptcy...then blame those eeeeevvvviil corporations for gouging consumers not caring about the 'working man'. They then use this resentment as a justification to increase taxes even more...a perpetual cycle leading to socialism and misery for everyone.

First of all, there are many countries that are socialist/quasi socialist whose citizens are far from "miserable" as you put it. I guess you haven't traveled much.

I don't rail against greed, just ignorance. The basis of progressive taxation is that the wealthy utilize the benefits of Government (which they conveniently rail against) far more than the poor or the middle class. Middle and lower class wages have been stagnant for over 20 years. HOw is that possible if they are such great beneficiaries of Government largess?

Corporations are paying the lowest effective tax rates since the Great Depression. Why do you think that is? Do you hear a lot about that on the news or on talk radio? (It's a rhetorical question.)

Maybe you should stop regurgitating trite RW talking points and educate yourself. You clearly don't understand the most basic roles of Government or the responsibilities of citizens in a free society. The "Laissez Faire Utopia" has been tried before. It was a miserable failure.

There is no perfect system. There is no utopia. There is only death and taxes.

Thank God.

O
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makhno Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 02:13 AM
Response to Original message
15. I hate randroids
What a sickening flow of recycled Randian tosh. Worth a rebuttal, but someone taking his inspiration from the heartless hag is unlikely to ever see the light.

aside from the tremendous amount of money lost through bureaucratic inefficiencies

Anyone with experience in a large private sector company would know things are hardly better on that side of the fence. Bureaucracy is not the private domain of government, but of bureaucrats. And these thrive in any system, private or public.

the bottom line is EVERY PENNY spent by the government was first taken from productive activity in the private sector

By the same token, every penny spent by a company was first taken from productive activity resulting in the purchase of the company's product. Do I blame McDonald's for stealing my money when I buy a burger? Of course not. Neither do I blame the government when I buy its services. In a lot of cases, it's money well spent.

...It was first siphoned away from those who create REAL jobs and REAL wealth in our society.

Government jobs are not real jobs? Government contracts do not create real wealth?

A limited amount of government is needed, but what we have today is absolutely monstrous...The federal bureacracy has become a terrible parasite on the back of the American worker.

It's all in the eye of the beholder, and this is precisely the reason why no agreement is possible in an argument such as this. While I would consider free university education and healthcare essential government services, a conservative views them as parasitic government wealth mismanagement. There's no agreement to be had. It is a moral, not a rational issue.

Think for a sec...If I want to buy an ice cream cone tomorrow for a dollar, it means I value the mint chocolate chip more than I value the dollar I'll spend for it. It also means the owner of the ice cream shop values my dollar more than he values the ice cream.

Thanks for the econ lesson!

Let's forget that he already has given three teenagers their first full-time job...forget that he provides a service that makes everyone in the community HAPPY...This isn't good enough. This isn't a real contribution to society according to government, so they must tax him. For some reason, they believe he isn't benefiting society, so they MUST step in and interfere with this process.

They tax him to provide checks on the safety of his product, to provide law enforcement so that he doesn't abuse his teenage employees in the backroom, to ensure that his ice cream delivery truck doesn't get stuck on an unmaintained dirt road, and to provide his kids with an education that few small business owners could afford at a private school. In a socialist system, the government would also tax him to provide him with affordable health care, something that is becoming increasingly out of reach of America's small business owners.

If a worker only produces $8.00 per hour in output, a $12.00 "living wage" is a losing proposition for the parlor owner. So what will he do? Perhaps he won't be able to hire an extra person to work weekends, or perhaps he will need to raise prices on cones to stay in business. Who knows? The costs must be absorbed somewhere, and usually the harmful effects of government are hidden.

It's not black magic. The worker will use the extra money to keep buying his product and perhaps even increase his consumption. With his new, higher wage, the worker might even find it unnecessary to keep two jobs. Hell, that worker might now even save some money and start a business or invest it into an existing one! But no, government cannot fuel growth. It just can't.

One important thing to remember: Government spending has visible beneficiaries and INVISIBLE victims.

It's your government. You are the beneficiary. And if you aren't, perhaps it's time to look at how your political leaders are redistributing your wealth.

Politicians can point to those who benefit through direct transfers of wealth (those who get the artificially high wages, those who get welfare checks, free tuition/healthcare, etc). They point to these people and say "See! Look how we helped them...How could you oppose this you greedy bastards?" What we DON'T see are the millions invisible victims of these policies...the people who absorb the costs of government. We don't see the consumers who pay higher prices every product...the workers who didn't get the raise they were hoping for...the teenager who didn't get hired on over the weekend at the ice cream parlor because a "living wage" meant the owner could only afford two employees instead of four.

The ice cream parlor fallacy makes a comeback. The question is - can the parlor operate with two employees? If it can, then it never employed four in the first place, unless the owner was a dumbass or a communist. Were the profit margins in the ice cream business so small that the company could only afford labor at poverty-level wages? Well, maybe it's time to think of a new business. After all, isn't this what makes America great? The constant innovation in the pursuit of profit?

We never see these people. They are the invisible victims of government interference in the economy. Their plight makes it easy for the left to rail against "the rich"...to push through tax increases for "the rich", and then blame the "greed" of employers when prices rise, or when layoffs start happening. It's a very convenient setup if you ask me. Tax companies...regulate them...create an artificial "living wage"...forcing companies to raise prices, cut pay, or lay off workers to avoid bankruptcy

How about cutting profits so as not to raise prices, cut pay or lay workers off?

...then blame those eeeeevvvviil corporations for gouging consumers not caring about the 'working man'. They then use this resentment as a justification to increase taxes even more...a perpetual cycle leading to socialism and misery for everyone.

That's right. Socialism for everyone. That's the ticket. The misery part we already have.
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SiliconMethod Donating Member (74 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 02:43 AM
Response to Original message
16. Advice
Edited on Wed Apr-28-04 02:45 AM by SiliconMethod
(Deleted. Check your PM instead.)
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ComerPerro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 02:46 AM
Response to Original message
17. so what? They create jobs. Who gives a fuck.
I don't feel that I owe any CEOs a god damned thing. Yeah, they pay people and make it so people can survive...

But they do it in exchange for labor.

Its not as though CEOs and corporations hire people just out of the goodness of their hearts. If they did, they would pay them better. Bottom line.

Fuck them. If they could get away with it, they would have their production fully automated and have no one on staff. Hiring people is just a means to an end for these people.
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Only Me Donating Member (631 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 03:23 AM
Response to Original message
18. Here goes...
where did the money to create GOVERNMENT jobs come from? You must acknowledge this...that aside from the tremendous amount of money lost through bureaucratic inefficiencies, the bottom line is EVERY PENNY spent by the government was first taken from productive activity in the private sector...

Every Penny my As*, tell him not if it's a Republican Administration. Because every Republican administration I can remember for the last 20 years has gotten their money to operate with, by Borrowing it! Tell him it's called the 'National Debt.'
Bush knows all about adding to it.

Ask him which came first, the people or the corporation/company? There are no companies without good people to work in them and run them. If there were no one making certain that people were not being taken advantage of by the corporate money brokers, there would be no employee benefits. There is just so much on that issue...impossible cover it all.

Checks and Balances, that is what a democracy is supposed to operate by. It keeps us poor folk from becoming slaves. Sounds like he likes the kick backs from the corporate welfare system, but doesn't
mention much about the trickle down theory. Probably because the trickle down theory doesn't exist, it is now called,"We are rich and powerful and we need to be more rich and more powerful", so lets out source these poor shlubs jobs, cause we can get labor cheap someplace else! Oh Yeah that really keeps the US dollar in the US.

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William Seger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 03:25 AM
Response to Original message
19. Libertarians have tunnel vision
They're obsessed with the idea that "freedom" only means freedom from government coercion, but they're completely unconcerned about the coercive, enslaving power of private individuals and institutions. "Free market" to them only means freedom from government control; the grinding, unbreakable control that private entities gain and maintain in a libertarian "free market" doesn't concern them at all.

Of course the government can create wealth -- the same way that private capitalists can create wealth. But libertarians are preoccupied with the notion that a lot (but not all) of government spending doesn't fit the simplified wealth-creation model of buying raw materials and hiring workers to create products that are "worth" more than the cost of production. But that simplified model neglects a couple of important ingredients: For one thing, no wealth is created unless someone actually buys the products, so being unconcerned about whether or not enough people have the money to buy the products is foolish. For another, especially in the last hundred years of so, workers need education, and if only the wealthy could afford education, then there would be fewer qualified workers, which would make labor much more expensive. Most of what the government does is in support of the infrastructure that creates the stable, financially healthy, educated society that indirectly supports wealth creation (even though that isn't necessarily its highest purpose). Libertarians imagine that in a "free market", those things will just magically happen, somehow. Problem is, there's no historical evidence to support that hypothesis.

That's what's wrong with the "supply-side" idiocy, too. The secret to a growing economy is helping the "buy-side" of the market to grow, not helping the rich to get richer so they have more money to invest. If markets are shrinking, then there's nothing worth investing in, no matter how much money the investors have. If the market for a product is there and growing, then we don't need to depend on a handful of super-rich people to invest in it; lots of people with a little bit of money to invest will do just as well.

If you want to see where libertarian economic philosophy leads, look at 19th century America: At the turn of the century, over half of the American population lived in subsistence poverty, while a tiny handful were very rich. If you want to see where progressive economic philosophy leads if given half a chance, look at 20th century America: At the turn of the century, not only were most Americans middle class (which hardly existed in the 19th century), but the wealthy class was also larger and wealthier. That's simply because more real wealth was created in that century, and that was primarily the result of creating a strong middle-class market through progressive labor reform -- unions, minimum wage, etc. -- and government infrastructure programs such as roads, education, public utilities, etc. -- not by letting libertarian "free market" forces reign supreme.
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durutti Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-28-04 03:36 AM
Response to Original message
20. Check out this site:
http://www.epinet.org

The Living Wage section should contain everything you need.
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