Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Class Warfare, or Common Sense? Elizabeth Warren on the social contract

"I hear all this, you know, 'Well, this is class warfare, this is whatever,'" Warren said. "No. There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own — nobody.
"You built a factory out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police-forces and fire-forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn't have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory — and hire someone to protect against this — because of the work the rest of us did.
"Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea. God bless — keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is, you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along."1
 1. "Elizabeth Warren On 'Class Warfare': There Is Nobody Who Got Rich On His Own (VIDEO)," Eric Kleefeld, Talking Points Memo, 09-21-2011.

48 comments:

B. Prokop said...

I heard that speech and cheered! Until we as a society realize that we are all in this together, and act upon that realization, we will continue to be in the unholy (deliberately chosen word) mess we are currently in. Makes me wish I lived in Massachusetts so I could vote for her. (But wait, I already live in the bluest of Blue States, Maryland. Hooray!!!)

Mike Darus said...

Class warfare has been a significant part of American history. I would not be surprised if it resurfaced dramatically.

B. Prokop said...

What Elizabeth Warren was advocating in her speech was NOT class warfare - she was advocating an END to the class warfare that has been and continues to be waged upon the middle class in this country by the rich for the past several decades. It is absolutely Orwellian to say otherwise.

Anonymous said...

I don't think I've ever heard "stealing" sound more attractive. Good job, Ms. Warren.

Bilbo said...

Why is it "stealing," Anon? Why is it "class warfare", Mike?

One Brow said...

Bilbo said...
Why is it "stealing," Anon? Why is it "class warfare", Mike?

Because if they needed to, teh facotry owner would have laid the roads, educated the workers, hired police, fire-fighters, and soldiers, and bascially gotten rich all on their own, if they had the chance. Really. All of those government-provided benefits were more harmful than helpful. They really could be successful on their own. That's why so many of them open successful factories in Somalia, where wages are dirt-cheap.

B. Prokop said...

Amazing how Mike can take a statement like "we are all in this together" and label that class warfare. I simply don't understand that (lack of) logic. Now a statement like "we are all against each other, and must look out only for our own interests", now THAT would be class warfare!

Crude said...

But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for.

"The rest of us"? Who, and in what proportion? If a certain class of people are paying vastly more taxes, do they deserve particular consideration over those paying fewer, or even none?

Does this mean that people who aren't paying into the system can be disregarded? How about the people who pay in, but in net terms, are in debt to the system? How about we - what's the word - disenfranchise them?

You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate.

Really? "The rest of us"? What about when that education system fails? What about students who teach themselves - which probably comprises far more of business-relevant "education" than people are willing to admit? What about workers who are trained on the job at employer cost? What about employers who pay to train and educate their workers?

You were safe in your factory because of police-forces and fire-forces that the rest of us paid for.

Back to "who is paying for these, and in what proportion?" Not to mention, how often do factories and businesses hire on their own security - ranging from security cameras to private guards to more?

You didn't have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory — and hire someone to protect against this — because of the work the rest of us did.

Bwahaha. There's another name for this: "Nationalizing an industry."

No. If you dig through the bull, Warren has a point worth considering - and frankly, that point is probably unintentional. And man, there is a lot of bull you have to chip away to get to it.

It is absolutely Orwellian to say otherwise.

Oh God. How many layers of irony are wrapped up in this one little statement, given the context.

Crude said...

Amazing how Mike can take a statement like "we are all in this together" and label that class warfare. I simply don't understand that (lack of) logic.

Maybe the same way you could have read what you consider to be a statement of "we are all in this together" and translated it as "The rich need to be dealt with"?

Crude said...

By the way, just to throw this curveball - you could take Warren's quote and, so long as you remove the reference to 'building a factory', rework it as an absolutely stirring diatribe against illegal immigration.

Maybe I'll do that later for fun, but for now, there's work to do.

B. Prokop said...

Question: "How many layers of irony are wrapped up in this one little statement?"

Answer: None.

Crude said...

Answer: None.

So I have to spell it out? Alright, I'll never pass up a chance to be pedantic.

Considering that the lasting idea Orwell communicated about language involved A) A burdensome, authoritative government, B) strict control over language ("Newspeak"), and C) quaint redefinitions, where "ending class warfare" somehow means "putting a stop to the abuses of the rich", well...

I'll stop there. Count 'em up, Bob. Better yet...

Say something Orwellian. ;)

Esse Participatum said...

"You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for."

Arent the roads in America paid for through the fuel tax? So, who drives more, uses more fuel, and so pays proportionally to his road usage.

"You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. "

Education is primarily an asset of the worker, because he is the main recipient of its benefits. Therefore everybody should pay for his own education.

"You were safe in your factory because of police-forces and fire-forces that the rest of us paid for."

Security alone can be provided with 2-3% of the GDP. Thats not an issue.

"But part of the underlying social contract is..."

Somehow, I have the feeling that everybody has his own idea of what is written in this ominous "social contract".

B. Prokop said...

A "burdensome, authoritative" plutocracy can be as bad or worse than any government. Because you see, it is not "government" that is the problem - it is "burdensome and authoritative". In a democracy, there is at least hope for citizen participation and a say in how we are governed. In a plutocracy (Oh, excuse me. I'm supposed to genuflect to Wall Street, and say "unfettered free market. I'll try to behave, I really will!), citizen participation is problematic.

"Strict control over language". Hmmm... that will require some pondering. After all, it was indeed the defenders of the wealthy oligarchs who coined such gems of pure speech as death panels, free market, job creators, "fair and balanced", etc., etc.

Quaint redefinitions: yet again, reasonable policy is suddenly labeled "socialism", a fine word with a noble heritage like Liberal is with malice aforethought propagandized into a term of derision, a conscious decision is made in Republican party councils (we have the tape!) to use the adjective "Democrat" instead of "Democratic" because (get this!) is sounds uglier!!! Oh, but I must be confused, because it is obviously only the Left that mangles language. Give me a break!

No Crude (How well you've chosen your moniker), the Orwellianism is all on your side (and you secretly know it, but can't afford to, or are afraid to, admit it).

Anonymous said...

I could use a dose of Ilion right about now...

B. Prokop said...

Oh, and Crude, "ending class warfare" actually does mean "putting a stop to the abuses of the rich". Couldn't have put it clearer myself!

B. Prokop said...

Don't worry, anonymous, "Speak of the devil, and he will appear."

One Brow said...

Crude said...
If a certain class of people are paying vastly more taxes, do they deserve particular consideration over those paying fewer, or even none?

You mean, in addition to the disproportionate share of benefits received?

Really? "The rest of us"? What about when that education system fails?

Then, the money of the taxpayers is wasted, but the fctory owners suffer no loss -- they just hire the workers from a different education system.

What about students who teach themselves - which probably comprises far more of business-relevant "education" than people are willing to admit?

Such workers stil teach themselves far less than you imply. Reading a technical manual is not easy for people who never learned to read.

What about workers who are trained on the job at employer cost? What about employers who pay to train and educate their workers?

Such training piggy-backs on the more general educaiton offered in schools.

Back to "who is paying for these, and in what proportion?" Not to mention, how often do factories and businesses hire on their own security - ranging from security cameras to private guards to more?

Security forces are neither designed nor intended to replace the police nor firefighters, and it would be prohibitively expensive to do so.

Bwahaha. There's another name for this: "Nationalizing an industry."

Actually, it was "military". As in, an organized military is what prevents the maurading bands.

Again, how many of these people take advantage of the super-cheap Somali labor?

B. Prokop said...

One Brow, for once you and I are in sync. I used to tell people who said they had no use for government, "You don't like government? Then move to Beirut. They don't have any!" (This was some decades ago, when they didn't.) Now I also use Somalia as the shining example of the joys of limited government.

As Oliver Wendell Holmes put it so beautifully, "I like to pay taxes. With them I buy civilization."

Crude said...

You mean, in addition to the disproportionate share of benefits received?

Really? Who's receiving these disproportionate benefits? And are all "rich" created equal in this regard?

There are plenty of wealthy people who receive benefits from the government in unfair ways. Like, you know - certain solar energy companies.

Then, the money of the taxpayers is wasted, but the fctory owners suffer no loss -- they just hire the workers from a different education system.

Oh really? There are different education systems out there, such that public education isn't always necessary?

Glad to hear it!

Such workers stil teach themselves far less than you imply. Reading a technical manual is not easy for people who never learned to read.

I know. Shame on those crappy teachers, the unions that shield them, and the rubes who protect them because BLUE STATE RUUUUUUUUUUULES!

And yes, let's discourage self-education at all costs. Because BLUE STATE RUUUUUoh I said this.

Such training piggy-backs on the more general educaiton offered in schools.

Except when it fails, as per above, eh? Or when there are other avenues available. But there's no avenue other than "paying for these schools" available.

Security forces are neither designed nor intended to replace the police nor firefighters, and it would be prohibitively expensive to do so.

No doubt. They're just inadequate and need to be supplemented - and not just for corporations. For private individuals.

Actually, it was "military". As in, an organized military is what prevents the maurading bands.

One man's marauding band is another man's organized military. The description of people coming in and taking over a business by force and preventing others from doing so is "nationalization" to a freaking T.

Hard, cold truth that, but there it is.

Again, how many of these people take advantage of the super-cheap Somali labor?

About as many as are taking advantage of the north korean labor generously safeguarded and provided for by the state, I imagine.

I notice, by the way, that all the points about just who's paying what, in what proportion, are entirely glossed over. One gets the impression that the rich aren't paying anything, while roads and militaries are being funded almost entirely by single moms. It ain't the way it is.

Crude said...

Oh, and Crude, "ending class warfare" actually does mean "putting a stop to the abuses of the rich". Couldn't have put it clearer myself!

Of course you couldn't have. ;)

And yeah, of course it "actually does mean" that. Black is white, peace is war, love is hate.

I asked you to say something Orwellian and man, you gave it your best shot.

Quick, somewhere someone who is formally a member of the party you like is giving a speech! You've got boots to lick! ;)

Crude said...

No Crude (How well you've chosen your moniker), the Orwellianism is all on your side (and you secretly know it, but can't afford to, or are afraid to, admit it).

See, that's the difference between you and me on this on, Bob.

I don't have a side.

I think the Republicans are full of crap. Sellouts, by and large, who dance to the tune of their donors. Guys who talk a good game - and less and less of that anymore - and then immediately do "what's necessary for the country". Aka, do whatever their donors or friends tell them to do - sans a few mavericks here and there. The few times I support them, I do so out of a very conscious pragmatism - and I don't expect much.

I also happen to think the Democrats are full of crap, largely beholden to the same general interests. Oh sure, here and there there's a difference - usually on those "value issues", which I actually think are important - but by and large it's the same crap with a different name. Hence Obama and company maintaining Gitmo, the Patriot Act, 'stimulus packages', and more. Why, he even has a good ol' quid pro quo scandal going on right now.

But see, I pipe up and point out that things aren't as simple as the talking head representing "The Blue Party" makes them out to be and OH CRAP. I *MUST* be a Proud Republican who Hates All Democrats. Because that's the game, right? You're either on this side or that side and there's no other way. Why, that would mean there's nuance involved. Subtlety. One would have to listen and evaluate what's being said, rather than determine "Which side that person is on" first and prepare the talking points and the swift re-interpretations.

So naturally, I have to (despite explicitly saying contrary in the past - I'm a freaking protectionist for crying out loud) hate all government and hate all liberals and CRUDE IS ON TEAM RED ATTACK ATTACK ATTACK.

Guys like you, Bob? You're fools. Good little boys and girls who are loyal to the party, no matter what. Because if you didn't have a party, you wouldn't know what to think. You'd collapse.

This is just football for guys who hate sports most of the time. ;)

B. Prokop said...

Hate sports? Read my profile! Baseball is my sports passion, and listed there. I'm a HUGE Orioles fan.

But be that as it may, I notice you've twice now brought up Solyndra, as though I'm somehow supposed to be embarrassed by that. Sorry, but I'm not. Not in the least. Never even heard of them until a few days ago. But interestingly enough, one thing that I did hear was that Solyndra was cleared to participate in the federal loan guarantee program in 2005 (!) by the Bush administration (!!), approved by the then Republican-dominated congress (!!!), and enthusiastically voted for by (wait for it) Senators Jim DeMint (R), Orrin Hatch (R), and Mitch McConnell (R) (!!!!), who are now trying so hard to lay this baby on Obama's doorstep. Something about the pot calling...??

Oh, but I forgot. You can hide behind the smokescreen of (falsely) claiming that you don't have a "side", and you personally weren't trying to pin it on anybody. Sorry, but as the Bard (Bob Dylan) said so eloquently, "Yer gonna serve someone." That's just the way it is.

Crude said...

But be that as it may, I notice you've twice now brought up Solyndra, as though I'm somehow supposed to be embarrassed by that. Sorry, but I'm not. Not in the least.

Of course not. How could it? You're a proud, proud (INSERT PARTY NAME HERE). You know that (INSERT OPPOSING PARTY NAME HERE) is just blowing everything out of proportion on purpose. Everyone who is intelligent knows that (INSERT PARTY NAME HERE) is going to come out of this smelling like a rose. Only people beholden to (INSERT OPPOSING PARTY NAME HERE) think otherwise.

Right? Right.

Something about the pot calling...??

You missed the part where I pointed out both the pots and the kettles were full of crap, I see. Or wait, you didn't miss it. It just can't register, because "you gotta serve someone". And "someone" means "one of two popular political parties".

Right, Bob. Great thinking there.

I pointed out Obama is supporting a lot of the same crap the Republicans supported. Stuff he was supposed to be against. Stuff that people couldn't shut up about when Bush was to blame, and now they shut up when Obama would be to blame. But all you can think is, "Crude expressed skepticism regarding a quote from someone who is on MY TEAM. Ergo, he's defending the other team. And also Bush. Even though he said both parties suck. DOES NOT COMPUTE."

I'll give you a moment, because that sort of thinking fries your brain. Because, as we all know...

You can hide behind the smokescreen of (falsely) claiming that you don't have a "side", and you personally weren't trying to pin it on anybody.

That's right. There's no way, no POSSIBLE way, I have a low opinion of both parties and put my faith in neither. Not possible. Because, after all, it's not possible for YOU now is it? You cannot think in any terms but "THIS IS MY TEAM" and "THIS IS NOT MY TEAM". Ergo, neither can anyone else. Democrat or Republican, everyone - even if they live in another country - must be loyal to one or the other.

Clearly. Because if that wasn't the case, Tiny Bob Prokop's political world would explode. It would become all big and scary. He'd not get that precious signal of 'blue state' or 'red state' he requires to digest and consider any - absolutely any - political argument.

My protectionism? It's a bluff. My opposition to federal drug laws? Smokescreen! My finding some of Ralph Nader's ideas intriguing, if flawed? DIRTY REPUBLICAN TRICKS. My hatred of bank bailouts? Deception!

You caught me, Bob. I'm a bought and paid for agent of Karl Rove himself. I pull down six figures a year to express modest skepticism of Democrat claims on modest-traffic philosophy blogs. It's the only way we'll bring back child labor, revoke women's voting rights, and re-institute slavery.

Anonymous said...

Crude, you're pwning too hard and viciously. Please stop.

Papalinton said...

I read the comments. I see a society at war with itself. I read several newspapers each day, NYT, Washington Post and Times, Wall Street Journal, Huff Post and some west coast newspapers and there is little doubt that the US is imploding. It seems the US economic model built after WW2 and into the late 20thC is increasingly becoming moribund. The political savagery we currently witness every night demonstrates a fractured society with little vision for the future. Australians are generally concerned sitting ringside watching American civil society evaporate. The greatest measure a civil society can demonstrate is the level of care tendered to its most vulnerable and defenseless members. The poor, the incapacitated, the helpless seem little more than baggage, with primary care reduced to a few voluntary, disjointed and regional specific non-government organizations, and conditional on the benefactorial whims of the socially well-off, a social security model more redolent of the Victorian period.

From the outside looking in, I despair somewhat at the impasse. I see the gradual but unequivocally visible transfer of geo-political power from the West to the East [China, India] as the US becomes less competitive, politically, economically and socially. For Australians, from an economic sense, this is good news; for cultural, social and historical reasons, this is not what we wish. It seems Americans are unable to distinguish global benefit from personal interest and convenience.

The old and tired clichés of 'class-warfare', 'universal health care' as socially destructive, individual liberty [at the expense of a prospering community]; are little more than epithets underlying mounting distrust, anger, hate and fracture within the community at large.

It is Orwellian.

B. Prokop said...

"You caught me, Bob. I'm a bought and paid for agent of Karl Rove himself."

Well, I'm glad you finally admitted it.

"You missed the part where I pointed out ..."

No, I didn't miss it. I ignored it. Big difference. Because, you see, I could see clearly that you were LYING, possibly/probably even to yourself. So you will most likely respond now, saying "No, you're the liar" (Oh, I'm sorry. That's Ilion who does that. I sometimes get you two confused.) But in any case, I know what "side" you're on by using the "If It Quacks Like A Duck" rule, and you are most definitely, emphatically quacking like a Tea Party Duck!

B. Prokop said...

Papalinton,

You see it correctly. The political system in the US is indeed broken (but I still hope not beyond repair) and currently completely dysfunctional. And since the US is still the major player on the world scene (at least for now), our screw-ups affect everyone, everywhere.

Crude actually has me all wrong, and it's a bit funny reading his caricaturizations of me. I honestly try to not pin all the blame on one party or the other, but it's so hard to do, when one faction (mine, of course) has all the reason and good will on its side, while the other is just plain stupid and malevolent!

(Now before folks start quoting that last paragraph as an example of hypocrisy, please take the time to look up the words "Irony" and "satirical" in the dictionary.)

I like many others started out with Great Hopes for an Obama administration. He thinks all the right things, his heart is genuinely in the right place, and (despite what his opponents say), he is, as my good friend Joe Sheffer used to say, a "Middle of the Road Extremist". But his big problem is I think he genuinely does not know how to be tough enough. He caves early and often to political opposition. He still thinks he can govern as a centrist in a polarized nation.

I still think Hillary Clinton would have been a far more effective president. I thought so during the last campaign, but unfortunately a majority of Democrats did not agree with me.

One Brow said...

Crude said...
Really? Who's receiving these disproportionate benefits?

The wealthy.

And are all "rich" created equal in this regard?

No. The more you have, the more you have to lose, the more benefit you gain from the protections and investments in society.

There are plenty of wealthy people who receive benefits from the government in unfair ways. Like, you know - certain solar energy companies.

Certain oil companies, certain telecommunications companies, certain farmers, etc. At least, for the definition of "unfair" you seem to be using.

Oh really? There are different education systems out there, such that public education isn't always necessary?

Glad to hear it!


I'm surprised you haven't. YOu must not know very much about USA politics (which explains many of your comments). For example, my kids go to the O'Fallon, IL, education system, which is far from broken, and will be much more employable than the graduates of the East St. Louis education system. The ones from the East St. Louis education system will have an advantage over those from many of the education systems in Mississippi.

You should really learn a little about how the country works before make such partisan comments.

I know. Shame on those crappy teachers, the unions that shield them, and the rubes who protect them because BLUE STATE RUUUUUUUUUUULES!

If you compare the academic achievements of blue state students and red state students, blue state students do rule. For example, in the Newsweek survey, 83 of the top 150 high schools are blue state. Due to the concentration of wealth in a red state, and the fact that schools are primarily financed by property taxes (or tuition), red states do get the very top top schools, but that effect is quickly overweighed by the investments blue states make in their schools.

And yes, let's discourage self-education at all costs.

Self-education is easier with a proper academic foundation. Good public education encourages self-education.

Except when it fails, as per above, eh?

As I said, then the employers use the students from the systems that don't fail. Either way, the employers don't bear the cost of the education.

No doubt. They're just inadequate and need to be supplemented - and not just for corporations. For private individuals.

You get what you pay for. We have so many police around I don't bother to lock my doors.

One man's marauding band is another man's organized military.

All the more reason to pay for one.

The description of people coming in and taking over a business by force and preventing others from doing so is "nationalization" to a freaking T.

Nationalization, by definition, requires that the government is the one taking things over. Historically, the people taking over the businesses of someone else have not always been governments.

Hard, cold truth that, but there it is.

Hard, cold, counter-to-definition truth?

About as many as are taking advantage of the north korean labor generously safeguarded and provided for by the state, I imagine.

So, you can't really dispute what Warren said, and you decide to use the scare tactic of North Korea instead? OK.

One gets the impression that the rich aren't paying anything, while roads and militaries are being funded almost entirely by single moms. It ain't the way it is.

The rich benefit more than other from societal infrastructure, and it is fair that they pay more.

One Brow said...

I pointed out Obama is supporting a lot of the same crap the Republicans supported. Stuff he was supposed to be against. Stuff that people couldn't shut up about when Bush was to blame, and now they shut up when Obama would be to blame.

I read about the left's disappointment with Obama all the time. How do you miss out on that?

Ilíon said...

"I could use a dose of Ilion right about now..."

Ilíon has a very low tolerance for foolishness and intellectual dishonesty; just *reading* this thread has already exceeded his daily allotted dosage.

Crude said...

Bob,

Because, you see, I could see clearly that you were LYING, possibly/probably even to yourself. So you will most likely respond now, saying "No, you're the liar" (Oh, I'm sorry. That's Ilion who does that. I sometimes get you two confused.)

You're a liar? Nah. I think you're just pretty goddamn stupid when the subject turns to politics.

Alright, Bob. You say I'm a liar - that I, apparently, just love the Republican party and think it's great and glorious and to hell with all the Democrats.

Where's your evidence? Lay it out. Make your case. Because so far the only "quack" here has been my pointing out that the quote given by Warren doesn't do justice to the complexities of the issue she was speaking to, and my pointing out that Obama supported numerous policies that were hot-button issues when Bush and company supported them, with not nearly the same level of criticism.

Face it, Bob. I've got you dead to rights: You're so wrapped up in your party loyalty that you can't think clearly on these issues anymore. I clearly hit a nerve, but that's okay - just run out and give your party of choice more of your money and time. They may give you a bumper sticker! Oh boy!

OB,

I read about the left's disappointment with Obama all the time.

And there were self-described right-wingers "disappointed" with Bush. But the difference in focus is striking. "The Patriot Act" was a non-stop point of complaint with Bush. With Obama, it's been downright ignored in comparison. Same with Gitmo. Same with other subjects.

Because, like good ol' Bob there displays, in the end the disappointment doesn't matter - because the party loyalty stays intact no matter what. And that means lending supporting and moderating criticism whenever it would benefit the party to do so.

Remember: It's real important to make each state as blue or red as possible. It's a point of pride! They're YOUR TEAM, and this is just a football game. ;)

Crude said...

OB,

The wealthy.

Yeah, "the wealthy". Aren't they the same ones paying a disproportionate amount of the total taxes? So what makes the benefit they're reaping 'disproportionate' to what they pay in? What's your metric for this? Your freaking gut feeling?

And why are 'the wealthy' a big bloc? There are plenty of "wealthy" supporting both political parties. Are they all equal? Do they all benefit equally?

Certain oil companies [...]

Okay, so it's actually "certain" companies. It's not "the wealthy", full stop.

You should really learn a little about how the country works before make such partisan comments.

Yeah, pointing out the failures of teachers and the education system is a partisan comment. Suggesting that, perhaps, there are better ways to educate children than the current system - that perhaps the public school system as it stands is in many ways obsolete - is mutiny.

If you compare the academic achievements [...]

Oh boy, 83 out of 150 - really kicking ass there! Of course with the mumbling that the red states have the absolute best schools but insisting that's outweighed.

Of course, while states go 'blue' in presidential elections, they're both 'red' and 'blue' when you start looking at particular districts and areas - so that would have to be taken into account. And we're still left with the little problem where it doesn't necessarily matter which of the "top 150 schools" are where, when the entire system is in dire need of overhaul.

All that with the cherry on top of "blue states spend more on their schools" being pulled out of your ass, since increased spending doesn't automatically cash out to increased performance.

Self-education is easier with a proper academic foundation. Good public education encourages self-education.

No, good education encourages self-education. It does not need to be "public".

As I said, then the employers use the students from the systems that don't fail. Either way, the employers don't bear the cost of the education.

Actually, employers do use students from the systems that fail - so long as the students themselves didn't fail. Some students can survive a poor system. Other students can get education outside of the public system.

And yes, employers do "bear the cost of education". Are you denying that they contribute taxes to these schools? Or that employers often pay to train their employees, or provide them with on the job training and education?

Nationalization, [...]

Sure, sometimes they've been merely backed by the government! ;)

Nationalization has happened plenty of times in the past. I know, sore point for you since it skunks the whole "The government PROTECTS businesses from being taken over" bit. But skunked it is - that's not always how it works out.

By the way, are there any industries in America you'd like to see nationalized? Inquiring minds want to know!

So, you can't really dispute what Warren said, and you decide to use the scare tactic of North Korea instead? OK.

Bwahaha. I disputed what Warren said outright - YOU suddenly acted as if my pretty modest criticisms meant I wanted there to be no government. So you brought up Somalia. I decided to play along and countered with North Korea. A nation with a lack of government infrastructure compared to a nation with all too much of one.

Next time, don't use scare tactics I can so easily reply to. ;)

The rich benefit more than other from societal infrastructure, and it is fair that they pay more.

That's an interesting thought!

Does it mean that if the rich pay more, it's only fair that they benefit more? Should the wealthy have more access to politicians, to being recipients of government largesse, etc, than others, since they pay more?

One Brow said...

Crude said...
With Obama, it's been downright ignored in comparison.

I don't know what comparisons you're acutally making. I've been reading for years about complaints with Obama's handling of the Patriot Act or Gitmo.

... because the party loyalty stays intact no matter what.

Both parties have loyalists, and both have sympathizers that also criticize.

Yeah, "the wealthy". Aren't they the same ones paying a disproportionate amount of the total taxes?

Disproportionately large, or small? That depends on how you value the benefits received.

So what makes the benefit they're reaping 'disproportionate' to what they pay in? What's your metric for this? Your freaking gut feeling?

Yup. Any reason to think it's a worse metric than dollar-per-capita? Neither approaches the true value of benefits recieved.

Are they all equal? Do they all benefit equally?

They all receive benefits in proportion to their wealth.

Okay, so it's actually "certain" companies. It's not "the wealthy", full stop.

With regard to "benefits from the government in unfair ways", I agree it's not the wealthy, full stop.

Yeah, pointing out the failures of teachers and the education system is a partisan comment.

Complainmts about some single, public education system is boilerplate right-wing rhetoric. It is certainly not reality in America.

Suggesting that, perhaps, there are better ways to educate children than the current system -

Which public system?

Oh boy, 83 out of 150 - really kicking ass there! Of course with the mumbling that the red states have the absolute best schools but insisting that's outweighed.

No mumbling. I am upfront about it, and I brought it in without prompting. Education increases in value with money spent, always, although money spent is not the only factor.

Besides, if there is one public education system, then there are no seaparate red and blue state results. So, you obviously don't think there is a red state advantage.

Of course, while states go 'blue' in presidential elections, they're both 'red' and 'blue' when you start looking at particular districts and areas - so that would have to be taken into account.

Good point.

... since increased spending doesn't automatically cash out to increased performance.

Sure, there are many factors. Parental involvement is probably the largest.

One Brow said...

No, good education encourages self-education. It does not need to be "public".

Your sentence did not disagree with my statement. I did not say "only good public educaiton...".

Actually, employers do use students from the systems that fail - so long as the students themselves didn't fail. Some students can survive a poor system. Other students can get education outside of the public system.

True. But the percentages increase when you come from a functional school system.

And yes, employers do "bear the cost of education". Are you denying that they contribute taxes to these schools?

Very few employers only hire locally. Many of them, especially of the size and capital commitment required for a factory, get property tax breaks, and thus do not contribute to the local schools.

Sure, sometimes they've been merely backed by the government! ;)

I assume from the wink you know better. On a small scale, we can start with claim-jumpers. On a larger scale, organized crime has been known to take over businesses.

Nationalization has happened plenty of times in the past.

Yes, but that is not what Warren said the factories were being protected against.

By the way, are there any industries in America you'd like to see nationalized? Inquiring minds want to know!

Fully nationalized? None that I can think of that are already not so. For example, I much prefer the German model of national health care (private companies properly regulated) to the English model (nationalized).

Bwahaha. I disputed what Warren said outright -

You tried to turn from Warren's argument of paying for protection from criminals to one of nationalization. That is not disputation.

So you brought up Somalia. I decided to play along and countered with North Korea.

What you're example for a contry with no schools, police, firefighters, or protection from criminal takeover? If you have a better example, I'll use it.

A nation with a lack of government infrastructure compared to a nation with all too much of one.

North Korea's infrastructure is miniscule compared to ours.

Does it mean that if the rich pay more, it's only fair that they benefit more?

I agree. It would be impossible to have it otherwise in a functional society.

Should the wealthy have more access to politicians, to being recipients of government largesse, etc, than others, since they pay more?

Whether they should or not, it's a fact of life. If the wealth don't have access, those with access become the wealthy.

Crude said...

I don't know what comparisons you're acutally making. I've been reading for years about complaints with Obama's handling of the Patriot Act or Gitmo.

It's not nearly as prominent and harped on now as it was during Bush's years. 'Someone, somewhere is complaining' is not what I doubt.

Both parties have loyalists, and both have sympathizers that also criticize.

Sure do. And Bob's clearly a loyalist who thinks almost entirely in party terms. Hence his going all giddy at the thought that some state out there is 'deeply blue'. Because that's all that really matters in the end.

Complainmts about some single, public education system is boilerplate right-wing rhetoric. It is certainly not reality in America.

Yeah, that's my standard boilerplate right-wing rhetoric here: Believing that autodidact traits should be strongly encouraged, pushing for lowering the minimum age for GEDs, etc. Rush Limbaugh goes on about this regularly!

Education increases in value with money spent, always, although money spent is not the only factor.

No, education always increases in cost with money spent. Money can be, and often is, wasted - not just in education.

And I discarded the whole comparison, not only pointing out how piddling the 'blue state advantage' is, but how my problem is with the system as a whole.

True. But the percentages increase when you come from a functional school system.

And there are vastly better ways than our current education system, grade and university level, offer.

Very few employers only hire locally. Many of them, especially of the size and capital commitment required for a factory, get property tax breaks, and thus do not contribute to the local schools.

"Very few"? In what world? Do you realize that "employers" range in scale, all the way down to small businesses? Employers pay into these school systems like it or not.

Further, they pay taxes even if they bring people out of state. Another way of rendering that: They pay into the education system even if they won't be benefiting from the specific system they're paying for.

I assume from the wink you know better. On a small scale, we can start with claim-jumpers. On a larger scale, organized crime has been known to take over businesses.

And governments have been known to nationalize business, or even support organized crime and claim jumpers. Government is not pure here by a longshot, and the government is entirely capable - and in the past, more than capable - of taking over businesses.

You tried to turn from Warren's argument of paying for protection from criminals to one of nationalization. That is not disputation.

I pointed out that nationalization is one of the ways that a business owner can have their business taken away from them - it was valid, and illustrates the problem of regarding government as a universal savior.

I could have also pointed out various laws that harm industries and businesses, sometimes out of ignorance, other times for noble reasons.

And at no point did I argue that there should be zero government, much less no policemen or firemen. That was a strawman.

Whether they should or not, it's a fact of life. If the wealth don't have access, those with access become the wealthy.

Yeah, indications are that Warren doesn't accept this fact. And I didn't ask whether it was a fact of life - it was whether they should, given the metric of pay.

Saint and Sinner said...

A number of political commentators have covered this already, but why not?...

"You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for."

She assumes that the factory owner didn't pay any taxes. In reality, the rich factory owner and those like him probably paid for most of the cost of the roads. He's getting the services (i.e. use of the roads) *he* paid for.

"You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate."

Again, she assumes that the rich man didn't pay taxes. He did, and so, the product of the public school system is partially *his investment*. He has every right to hire them without owing anything else to society.

Second, why does she think that the workers work for the factory owner? Are they his slaves? No, he *pays* them.

Third, with the liberal-control of the schools, test scores have been plummeting, and universities have been forced to offer low-level math courses to get students up to where they should be. Too much time spent learning how to put on a condom.

Lastly, education should be privatized. Enough with the propaganda.

"You didn't have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory"

Again, she acts as if the rich man doesn't contribute to the government taxes that fund the police force. He does, and he's getting the services *he* paid for.

Second, according to conservatives, this is the one job that government is *supposed* to do.

B. Prokop said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
B. Prokop said...

Re-posted from another thread)

I've remained silent so far on Crude's mischaracterization of me as a partisan Democrat, but before this error gets set in stone on this website, I will have to break my silence to say I have a history of voting all over the map as far as party affiliation is concerned. My favorite politician active today happens to not be a Democrat, and I greatly admire at least two of the current Republican hopefuls. I also am the only person I know who can proudly make the claim that he voted for both Barry Goldwater and George McGovern. Admittedly, my support of Democratic candidates for the presidency has outnumbered Republicans (over the years, I've voted in 8 elections for the Democrat, and only 3 for the Republican), but those figures do at least prove that I am far from blindly partisan!

So be careful who you might label a blind party partisan without actually knowing the guy!

Crude said...

I've remained silent so far on your mischaracterization of me as a partisan Democrat

Silent? You freaked out and insisted I was a GOP loyalist and went on and on about how everyone serves someone so not being loyal to either party was not an option. And you went off on how fantastic it is that a particular state is so "deep blue".

I can only judge you by what you say, and at no point did you deny that you were a democrat party loyalist - your response was to strongly imply *I* was a party loyalist.

Nevertheless, I repeat: I realize there's more to you than your politics. But if the line in the sand is the political affiliation, so be it.

Ilíon said...

Crude: "By the way, are there any industries in America you'd like to see nationalized? Inquiring minds want to know!"

Come now! Surely the proper phrasing of the queston is, "Is there anything at all in America that you *don't* want to see nationalized?"

Anonymous said...

B.Prokop: Don't worry, anonymous, "Speak of the devil, and he will appear."



Bob...just admit it. You are harboring a COLOSSAL man crush on Ilion. You present it to the world as a hatred, of course, a hatred mixed with jokes and mockery, but we both know that hatred is the most common device employed by a self which is committed to protecting itself from the sleepy yet volatile passions of love. As such, this concealment always takes the form of denial. The world may see only the veil which you have draped over yourself. But I see under the veil. And what lies under the veil is LOVE. You may respond to this idea with prideful mockery, but just know that pride indicates a refusal to surrender, and thus your mockery is really a mask. It is the last line of defense for an embarrassed soul whose deep inner truths are being pried into and uncovered.

Ilíon said...

Amonymous:
LOL; you wicked, wicked, person!

B. Prokop said...

I love ALL my fellow human beings! It's Ilion's views, as well as his manner of expressing them, that I hate.

One Brow said...

Crude said...
It's not nearly as prominent and harped on now as it was during Bush's years.

True. By contrast, the notion of the federal government trying to take away guns is much more harped on. Is your point that partisans are partisans?


'Someone, somewhere is complaining' is not what I doubt.

Yeah, that's my standard boilerplate right-wing rhetoric here: ...

That some of your rhetoric is not standard, right-wing rhetoric doesn't change that some of it is.

No, education always increases in cost with money spent. Money can be, and often is, wasted - not just in education.

A percentage is wasted, but not all. This is true in any effort, public or private.

... my problem is with the system as a whole.

There is no "system as a whole". There are thousands of system governed by 50 separate primary authorities, that receive a fraction of their resources from a central source.

And there are vastly better ways than our current education system, grade and university level, offer.

Can you point to a pratical example?

"Very few"? In what world?

Reality.

Do you realize that "employers" range in scale, all the way down to small businesses? Employers pay into these school systems like it or not.

An employer located in Fairview Heights, IL, does not pay property taxes that sent the student they hire from O'Fallon, IL, even if that is there only employee.

Further, they pay taxes even if they bring people out of state.

But not for the person they hired.

Another way of rendering that: They pay into the education system even if they won't be benefiting from the specific system they're paying for.

Smaller businesses, yes. But they still needed to rely on other people to pay for that employee's educaiton, first.

Government is not pure here by a longshot, and the government is entirely capable - and in the past, more than capable - of taking over businesses.

Why is that relevant to a speech about taxpayers paying to prevent takeover of a business?

... illustrates the problem of regarding government as a universal savior.

Has Warren claimed government is a universal savior?

And at no point did I argue that there should be zero government, much less no policemen or firemen. That was a strawman.

I did not claim that was your argument, so no straw man was erected. I pointed out the reason people don't go build factories in Somalia is because of the social contract and infrastructure we have here, or even in China.

Yeah, indications are that Warren doesn't accept this fact.

What indications?

And I didn't ask whether it was a fact of life - it was whether they should, given the metric of pay.

I'm undecided on that issue. It sounds like a best-of-all-possible-worlds question. I think "one person, one vote" means more if every person has an equal chance to be heard, as well. However, I don't like the idea of muzzling people just because they have money. So, I'd have to look more closely at a proposal for equal access (if you had one in mind) before deciding to support it or not.

One Brow said...

Saint and Sinner said...
In reality, the rich factory owner and those like him probably paid for most of the cost of the roads. He's getting the services (i.e. use of the roads) *he* paid for.

In reality, the worker do a lot more driving on those roads than the factory owner or his trucks, and pay most of the gasoline taxes that support the road.

Again, she assumes that the rich man didn't pay taxes. He did, and so, the product of the public school system is partially *his investment*. He has every right to hire them without owing anything else to society.

In reality, for the past twenty years factories have been opening in areas where they receivge massive property tax breaks. Property taxes are the primary means of support for most school systems in the nation.

Third, with the liberal-control of the schools,

If more conservatives were willing to do the work of teachers for the pay teachers get, there would be no "liberal control" of the schools.

Lastly, education should be privatized.

Private schools serving the public do not, overall, ourperform public schools. Private school that resserve the right to limit their students do very well, natuRally, but who educates the students that can't get in?

Again, she acts as if the rich man doesn't contribute to the government taxes that fund the police force. He does, and he's getting the services *he* paid for.

Warren is just asking for payment proportionate to benefit received.

Crude said...

True. By contrast, the notion of the federal government trying to take away guns is much more harped on. Is your point that partisans are partisans?

You slow, slow person. I've been harping on partisans throughout this thread. You just freaking noticed?

That some of your rhetoric is not standard, right-wing rhetoric doesn't change that some of it is.

Then everyone in these conversations is giving "standard (party) rhetoric", including yourself. Since apparently any point of agreement, no matter how broad or vague, qualifies.

A percentage is wasted, but not all. This is true in any effort, public or private.

And sometimes more obvious in certain areas.

There is no "system as a whole".

Yes, there is. It's the model of modern education, whether in public OR most private school settings. You should notice I'm not clamoring for school vouchers here - it's because private schools aren't the solution to the problem that I see.

An employer located in Fairview Heights, IL, does not pay property taxes that sent the student they hire from O'Fallon, IL, even if that is there only employee.

Yeah, they pay the taxes for the employees *they won't be hiring* in that case. It's not that you only pay if you get to hire the person, you know.

Can you point to a pratical example?

For starters, how about phasing out the degree system, forcing universities on the public dole to make their textbooks, their courses, their outlines and more available online, and promoting a switch from the degree system to a certification system with employer input?

See that? I'm not 100% against government involvement. I'd just love to turn the guns of government on the education system in a brand new way.

Smaller businesses, yes. But they still needed to rely on other people to pay for that employee's educaiton, first.

Not "other people". They pay too. Hell, their employees pay too. And the education system is screwed as is - it shouldn't be enshrined. It should be dismantled and replaced.

Reality.

Yeah, I'd say your reality is seen through rose colored glasses, but I'm not sure you remember to wear them - crack use causes memory issues.

Why is that relevant to a speech about taxpayers paying to prevent takeover of a business?

It's relevant because she's illustrating what 'rich people' receive from the government, without noting the downside and risks of government involvement.

Has Warren claimed government is a universal savior?

Well gosh, she's used "standard boilerplate" of people who put that much faith in government, so by your standards she did.

What she did was oversimplify an issue that is far more complex and nuanced than she let on.

I did not claim that was your argument, so no straw man was erected.

You treated your non-sequitur as relevant to my argument. That's strawman enough.

What indications?

Her speech. You know, the problems I pointed out with it? Oh wait, you have trouble understanding those.

I'm undecided on that issue.

How about which industries should be nationalized? Undecided on that too?

One Brow said...

Crude said...
I've been harping on partisans throughout this thread.

Harp away.

Since apparently any point of agreement, no matter how broad or vague, qualifies.

Points of agreement that are counter to reality (such as the notion of a single educational system) stand out from those that are not.

And sometimes more obvious in certain areas.

Also sometimes just more moticed in certain areas.

Yes, there is. It's the model of modern education, whether in public OR most private school settings.

The only alternative you've mentioned so far is self-education (which I presume includes homeschooling). Do you seriously think that is a better alternative, and if so, based on what metric?

It's not that you only pay if you get to hire the person, you know.

Exatly. You don't pay at all for the education of the person you hire.

For starters, how about phasing out the degree system,

Degrees matter becasue they matter to employers. If you persuade people to stop including degrees in job requirements, universities will stop wrapping things up in degrees.

forcing universities on the public dole to make their textbooks, their courses, their outlines and more available online,

Already happening, slowly. It's not good for every couse (a German teacher needs to be able to hear a student speak), but the community college where I teach offers several courses on-line, several books as e-books, etc.

and promoting a switch from the degree system to a certification system with employer input?

You don't think employers have much input into the current system? You don't think degrees in engineering, marketing, social work, etc. act as defacto certifications? Some employers even like hiring generalists like English or history majors.

See that? I'm not 100% against government involvement. I'd just love to turn the guns of government on the education system in a brand new way.

Are you a teacher at the college level? I think you have some good ideas, but are possibly not aware that they are already being implemented to a degree, at least at the community college level.

And the education system is screwed as is - it shouldn't be enshrined. It should be dismantled and replaced.

I think it can be reformed without dismantling.

Yeah, I'd say your reality is seen through rose colored glasses,

I'm probably more cynical than you.

It's relevant because she's illustrating what 'rich people' receive from the government, without noting the downside and risks of government involvement.

When was the last the US nationalized a business?

Well gosh, she's used "standard boilerplate" of people who put that much faith in government, so by your standards she did.

We must see different boilerplates.

What she did was oversimplify an issue that is far more complex and nuanced than she let on.

Now I agree with that. She's acting as a politician.

How about which industries should be nationalized? Undecided on that too?

Should I just copy and paste the answer from the last time you asked me that in this thread?