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Author Topic:   Wealth Distribution in the USA
Panda
Member (Idle past 3827 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 11 of 531 (699343)
05-17-2013 6:48 PM
Reply to: Message 10 by Tangle
05-17-2013 5:16 PM


Re: Cry, cry, cry.
Tangle writes:
Coincidentally, I just heard the happiest countries have the least disparity between the top and bottom incomes.
...accompanied by a considerable drop in crime.
Let's all move to Iceland!

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 10 by Tangle, posted 05-17-2013 5:16 PM Tangle has not replied

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 3827 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 13 of 531 (699345)
05-17-2013 7:35 PM
Reply to: Message 12 by foreveryoung
05-17-2013 7:08 PM


FEY writes:
If each of the 5 income quintiles held exactly the same amount of wealth through force...aka taxation, how do you think the standard of living would fare through time. I'm not talking about immediately after the wealth was removed from the upper brackets; I'm talking about after several decades of such removal.
Well, in Iceland there doesn't seem to be any obvious detrimental effect of having a flat equality curve.
(Actually, it is not quite flat, but it is the best example I can think of that has almost managed to achieve what you are asking about.)
What type of consequences were you thinking about?
Edited by Panda, : No reason given.

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 12 by foreveryoung, posted 05-17-2013 7:08 PM foreveryoung has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 21 by foreveryoung, posted 05-17-2013 11:55 PM Panda has replied

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 3827 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 30 of 531 (699381)
05-18-2013 9:33 AM
Reply to: Message 21 by foreveryoung
05-17-2013 11:55 PM


FEY writes:
I was thinking about a reduction in the standard of living. But hasn't iceland always had the same distribution of wealth?
It seems not.
Iceland's economy - like any economy - goes through changes.
Unfortunately, there is not much data about wealth distribution in Iceland pre-2004.
But since 2004, Iceland's wealth distribution curve has flattened further still - but with no signs of a drop in the standard of living.
There seems to be no detrimental consequences to being in a 'flat wealth distribution curve' country.

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

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 Message 21 by foreveryoung, posted 05-17-2013 11:55 PM foreveryoung has not replied

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 3827 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


(4)
Message 76 of 531 (699524)
05-21-2013 6:21 AM
Reply to: Message 75 by Coyote
05-21-2013 1:08 AM


Coyote writes:
I'm going to give you a trophy indicating you won the Indy 500 next week.
But if you're honest, it will be of no value to you as you didn't actually win that race.
well, if it is anything like the Borg-Warner Trophy, then it is worth over $1,000,000 !!
Coyote writes:
you didn't earn it so it has far less value than money you actually earned through your own efforts.
But it doesn't have less financial value, does it.
We are talking about 'wealth' redistribution, not 'pride' redistribution.
Coyote writes:
It is nothing to be proud of.
I look at my family and I see something to be proud of.
I look at my friends and I see something to be proud of.
I look at my hard-earned 'wealth' and I see nothing to be proud of.
It's just money.

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

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 Message 75 by Coyote, posted 05-21-2013 1:08 AM Coyote has not replied

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 3827 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


(3)
Message 90 of 531 (699548)
05-21-2013 2:35 PM
Reply to: Message 89 by NoNukes
05-21-2013 2:13 PM


NoNukes writes:
Because even the 2-3 dollar rate is abusive and inhumane?
I remember when the UK's minimum wage was being proposed; businesses cried foul, saying that it would cause unemployment to zoom straight up.
But it turned out that they were just greedy bastards, desperately clinging to their gold.
Unemployment was unaffected.
But it still took until 1998 before the UK put in a minimum wage.
Businesses will protest against anything that (on the face of it) will reduce profits.
They also seem to forget that if an employee is paid more: they will spend more.

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 89 by NoNukes, posted 05-21-2013 2:13 PM NoNukes has seen this message but not replied

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 3827 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 136 of 531 (699620)
05-22-2013 11:44 AM
Reply to: Message 134 by jar
05-22-2013 11:04 AM


Re: Should a society have the right to determine
jar writes:
Why should health care, education or utilities be market driven?
I've asked that same question to many people, and no-one has an answer.
In the UK we privatised our railways because they were costing the government too much money.
But if a private company can make it profitable, why can't the government?
If the answer to that is "Government departments are useless" then surely the solution is to fix the government departments.
As it is, the government now subsidises the companies that run the railways!
Before privatisation, any income was spent on running costs.
After privatisation, any income is spent on running costs AND shareholders.
Unsurprisingly, that didn't lead to lower fares.
But, this is probably off-topic.
Rant over.

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 134 by jar, posted 05-22-2013 11:04 AM jar has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 149 by jar, posted 05-22-2013 2:29 PM Panda has not replied

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 3827 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 367 of 531 (700577)
06-04-2013 6:14 PM
Reply to: Message 366 by Rahvin
06-04-2013 5:58 PM


Rahvin writes:
The problem is that the fox's wealth gives him influence over henhouse security.
Which reminds me of this:
I think too far off-topic for discussion - but fun and almost relevant to this thread.
Edited by Panda, : No reason given.

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 366 by Rahvin, posted 06-04-2013 5:58 PM Rahvin has not replied

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 3827 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


(1)
Message 414 of 531 (701082)
06-11-2013 1:36 PM
Reply to: Message 413 by Percy
06-11-2013 1:29 PM


Re: Link
Percy writes:
A job is worth what someone is willing to pay for it that someone else is willing to accept. It has nothing to do with any imaginary "economic benefit" to the company.
How do employers decide if they are willing to pay a particular wage?

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 413 by Percy, posted 06-11-2013 1:29 PM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 418 by Percy, posted 06-11-2013 1:53 PM Panda has replied

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 3827 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


(2)
Message 422 of 531 (701094)
06-11-2013 2:42 PM
Reply to: Message 418 by Percy
06-11-2013 1:53 PM


Re: Link
Percy writes:
You mean like in the real world? My employer's Human Resources department subscribes to salary surveys. They try to keep our salaries competitive with other companies in the same and similar industries. In other words, they pay market prices.
Percy writes:
In other words, employers pay wages at prevailing market levels. That's how they "decide if they are willing to pay a particular wage." They pay a little more for more talent and experience, and a little less for less talent and experience. Employers will also pay a little more if they prefer to minimize turnover.
My question appears to have been unclear. Sorry.
How did they decide if they were willing to pay any wage at all? (i.e. decide to recruit someone at a wage greater than zero.)
Imaginary Example:
Imagine there was a business that had an office with 5 desks and that was all the office could hold.
But they had enough work for 6 people.
Would they just decide to employ a 6th person?
And how would they make that decision?
Real Example:
My company needs a very specific skill set to help run and develop their system.
There are only about 5 people in the world that have that skill set.
It would be very useful if the company had 2 people with that skill - it would halve development time, bringing all the benefits of a fast release turnaround, etc.
But to hire someone with that skill set would cost somewhere between 100,000 and 200,000.
That is the market rate.
So - why do you think we haven't hired someone?
It would definitely be advantageous to have another developer.
And we know the market rate.
How do you think we decided that we were not willing to pay that particular wage?
Edited by Panda, : No reason given.
Edited by Panda, : No reason given.
Edited by Panda, : No reason given.
Edited by Panda, : No reason given.

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 418 by Percy, posted 06-11-2013 1:53 PM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 431 by Percy, posted 06-12-2013 9:13 AM Panda has replied

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 3827 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


(1)
Message 433 of 531 (701156)
06-12-2013 11:50 AM
Reply to: Message 431 by Percy
06-12-2013 9:13 AM


Re: Link
Percy writes:
That has nothing to do with setting the employee's salary were he hired.
As I said, their wage was considered to be the current market rate of 100-200k.
Percy writes:
You made a business case arguing how much better or worse the company would do if they hired the new employee, a business case that took into account prevailing market level wages for that job.
Yes, we estimated the economic benefit of that additional employee.
But you said that was not possible.
So, maybe I am misunderstanding you.
Edited by Panda, : No reason given.

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 431 by Percy, posted 06-12-2013 9:13 AM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 434 by Percy, posted 06-12-2013 1:19 PM Panda has replied

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 3827 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


(1)
Message 439 of 531 (701184)
06-12-2013 5:25 PM
Reply to: Message 434 by Percy
06-12-2013 1:19 PM


Re: Link
Percy writes:
Here's a table of how much a company benefits in terms of dollars from hiring the new employee
I would want their other overheads to be included with their wage - but it seems ok as an example.
Percy writes:
On the top line it says "$100,000". If the new hire enables the company to earn an additional $100,000, then you'd like to believe that the economic benefit of that job to the company is $100,000. That figure is close enough to his salary as to almost seem reasonable.
*nods*
Seems reasonable.
Percy writes:
It gets even more ridiculous if one tries to claim a link between this supposed "economic benefit" and salary. In that case you'd have salaries changing constantly due to normal fluctuations in a company's revenue and earnings (which can both be negative, though usually only the latter).
My salary is linked to inflation, but I only get the increase once a year - despite inflation constantly changing.
Percy writes:
That's because it isn't that job that's contributing $5,000,000 to the company's bottom line. All that additional job does is allow the company as a whole to perform in way that enables it to make an additional $5,000,000.
But it is that employee contributing $5,000,000 to the company's bottom line.
And you could show that it is, by sacking the employee and watching the $5,000,000 disappear.
Percy writes:
But the last scenario in the table says "$5,000,000". If the new hire enables the company to earn an additional $5,000,000, then you'd like to believe that the economic benefit to the company of that job is $5,000,000. But that's ridiculous, isn't it.
Sure - it's a really big number, but the numbers are fictional.
I see nothing wrong with it, in principle.
Why do you think it is ridiculous?

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 434 by Percy, posted 06-12-2013 1:19 PM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 441 by Percy, posted 06-12-2013 8:05 PM Panda has not replied

  
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