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Old 03-22-2009, 05:52 AM
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Default Re: Obama's Stimulus Package: Direct Translation

Originally Posted by Buizel410 View Post
The lower class doesn't work the hardest. Why do you think they became the lower class?
Easy: They are almost always simply born into it. Those that are in the lower class are then oppressed to remain in the lower class. There's a reason why "rags-to-riches" movies exist. It's because this happens extremely rarely. The American class system doesn't make it possible for those oppressed to have a voice, so those that are in the middle-class like you would never hear from them. No voice = no soul = you can think whatever you want about them to feel better about yourself.

Besides that point, haven't you heard of those in the lower class holding three jobs just to make ends meet? So holding three different jobs is not working as hard the average middle-class person, who works a single 40-hour job? Maybe you should go try it just in case I'm wrong. Work over 100 hours a week versus working 40 hours a week, and then come back and show me how the former is "working less hard" than the latter.

Originally Posted by Buizel410 View Post
It's just that the middle and upper classes start working hard earlier in life, through school and early life.
And those that couldn't go to school because they wouldn't have money to pay for food? Have you considered that some people just have to work hard not because of school, but because it's a matter of life or death? Who are we to judge those that are less privileged that us? Are you saying that you can successfully complete high school under the circumstance where you would have trouble getting enough food?

Originally Posted by Buizel410 View Post
I'm not going to pay someone's mortgage because they didn't set priorities and goals for themselves.
Someone's mortgage? Don't you mean someone's foreclosure? Besides that point, it's the mortgage companies' own fault for lending to those who couldn't possibly pay back in the first place, isn't it? If you're a homeless guy and I offer you a loan to own a house, wouldn't you take it?

Originally Posted by Buizel410 View Post
Yes, wealth redistribution lowers poverty rates, but that statement was totally one-dimensional-the middle and upper classes unfairly lost money in that process.
You have made a number of intrinsic assumptions (which are unfortunately hegemonic in nature):
1. Accumulation of wealth is the only meaningful measure of self worth in society.
2. People should only strive for this one measure.
3. Government should not be interfering with this single meaningful measure of society.
4. Fairness is derived from attaining the maximum of possible of accumulation of wealth.
5. Power is derived from this only measure of self worth.
6. Taken all of this together, the conclusion here is that wealth redistribution weakens statement number 4, and therefore weakens statement number 1.

What if statement number one changes to this: "generous giving of wealth is the only meaningful measure of self worth in society" (examples are found in indigenous populations in potlashs, and a number of African societies as well, with stuff like the hxaro)?

Originally Posted by Buizel410 View Post
I do donate to charities, but the government should not be a charity.
Charity =/= wealth redistribution
Charity is under the circumstance where one gives to another, yes. The difference here is that charities deal with power structures between the two players, while the other deals with equaling power difference between people. It may feel the same to you, but it is very much different in nature.

Originally Posted by Buizel410 View Post
They've got better issues to deal with right now. How about getting the economy back on track rather than just handing out money?
The current situation of the economy is simply a symptom of the problem. If the government is that concerned about it, they should deal with the flaws of capitalism itself, not just pump money into bailouts like the AIG bailout.

You may already know about the bailout scandal in that sense, considering that AIG used 10% of the bailout money to give bonuses to the executives. So in essence, the government is benefiting the upper-class while screwing over the middle-class by doing so. Honestly I don't understand how awarding corporations for stupidity is any way of dealing with the economy either.

Originally Posted by Buizel410 View Post
No strings attached? That's the problem: there needs to be a string attached. Otherwise, the people are being forced to pay this money back rather than the corporations who should be paying them back.
You do realize you've contradicted yourself in this statement in comparison to your previous responses, don't you? Oh, and see above.

Originally Posted by Buizel410 View Post
College is post-secondary and optional education, so I feel that the government should not be responsible for it. The only reason college tuition is so high is because the government felt everybody should be able to go to college-and invented guaranteed student loans. Immediately after that, tuition almost doubled.
By inventing the guaranteed student loans, they can reduce funding to the universities. After that, tuition almost doubled so the universities can cover their costs, putting the burden of education from the government to creating the debt culture the students have. The move is so ingenious that even most people, like you, feel it's something natural, something hegemonic. You have a correlation there, but it's only that there is a confounding factor. ;)

The truth is that there can be government mandates to keep tuition fees low. Canadians enjoyed a fairly low amount of debt up until recently because the government has a scaling loan system (the higher the earnings of the family of the student/student themselves, the lower the loans) AND has the tuition freeze. When the government decided to drop the freeze on tuition, the prices of tuition dramatically increased. Say what you will, but it's simply the creation of debt culture of the middle-class.

Originally Posted by Buizel410 View Post
I think that this stimulus money should be cut to about 10% of what it is now, and only be spent towards alternative energy and new technologies. That should create plenty of jobs, generate money, and hopefully end the recession.
High-tech is not the solution we've hoped for, from what we know in the past 10 years. Secondly, increased technological efficiencies, while a good thing, does lead to a lowered working population since the machines take over for their jobs.

Your proposal is flawed in several ways. The first is that you assumed research works. That's simply a lack of understanding of research, though. Research itself is a very slow process, and that perfecting efficiency in alternative energy, even with increased funding, would still take a long time. One issue is simply that there would be a lack of personnel to actually take advantage of the increased resource until at least 2-3 years from now. This process is too slow as a solution for "ending the recession" any time soon. I do have to note that it's not a bad thing, though, since it can lead to prosperity when complete. Can is the operative, since even that isn't guaranteed.

The second flaw is that investing in high technology and research will make more jobs. The answer outside of the fact that machines makes less people working is the factor of "creeping credentialism." That is, investment into high technology and research inherently requires highly trained personnel, which almost all of the middle-class would not have access to. As an example, maintenance of a robot in a factory would obviously require years of training just to understand all of the workings of that robot to maintain it, that that's coming from an engineer (again, this is a professional). High technology and research both have these intrinsic barriers to most of the labour market that it would not create jobs for the common people as you would hope for.

A third flaw in the argument you have here is that research and high technology can generate money. Research doesn't generate money, it just sucks money away until hopefully something useful comes along that can help generate money. High technology, like basically every other manufacturing district, needs a market. No market, no money generation. Recessions tend to mean a lack of markets all around, including the high technology sector. Oversupply of goods from the high technology sector does not guarantee a way of generating money either.