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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:39 am 
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Jebus wrote:
Rucifer wrote:

Around 45 million people in the U.S. are without health care http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_car ... ted_States. This is a corporate problem, since in our country, employers provide insurance.


That leaves around 255 million With healthcare. If you don't like it why don't you start your own insurance company? Do you really think you are going to insure someone who eates french fries and sodas all day long? Because i'm sure that is the majority of the un-insured population.

Lets do some math...45 million, thats 15% not covered. Allot of people but considering how unhealthy america is I say thats pretty good.


Hmm...is this serious? Look at the percentage of overweight/obese people in the country. Even if we said that only the uninsured fit this... that would leave 49% of the overweight in america come from some made up place (64% of the adults in this country are overweight- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Obesity_in ... ted_States . 64-15, 15 being the amount of uninsured=49). So really, I don't understand your logic regarding this. Actually I'll give you one thing right...85% of the country being insured is better than a lot of other places, but considering this is the mightiest nation on earth, it is silly that we are the only industrial nation that does not ensure all citizens have coverage. That fact that insurance is privatized is the reason for this. And before I hear that national health insurance would cause the quality to go down...I don't think its unreasonable for people to receive privatized care, as long as they are willing to pay, and that it would be better than the public care, but public care should be a basic right for all.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:42 am 
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KPj wrote:
wow. You're all very sensitve aren't you :lol:

This will probably open a can of worms but, here's the thing with me - I actually don't understand socialism at all. Sure, I know the deffinition. But, I just don't get it. Probably the way I was brought up. We had a family dinner on Sat and my Aunt was there, and she's a strict outspoken socialist, who works for a Union. Her partener was there, too, who is probably even more outspoken on the subject, which I thought was impossible. My dad is an outright capatilist, too. I work for a Sister company of my dads, btw.

Anyway, someone mentioned that we have staff in India. My god, i thought they were going to start crying. It started quite an interesting discussion. I thought i understood socialism until I had this conversation. Now I get the impression that the ideal life for a socialist is for everyone to have their own little plot of land, a few cows and chickens, and grow their own veg. No need for money. Although, obviously, human nature would come along and ruin it but, that's my understanding of socialism now.

I hope it doesn't offend anyone. I consider myself open minded, i'm willing to be educated. I tried to get educated at the weekend but they just kept banging on about the same points that didn't appear to have any relevance. When I asked what their ideal life would be, I couldn't get a straight answer. I also don't really know why anyone would start a business and NOT want to make as much profit as possoble.

I'm hesitant to call myself anything although clearly i'm a capatilist. I think first and foremost, I believe in a free world. If someone wants to start their own business and make as much money as they can, then they should have the freedom to do so.

I also see here the same thing I seen on Saturday with our interesting discussion. We have Indian workers so all we here about is how they're mistreated and all this crap. Our indian workers have a better office than ours, and I have no doubt they're happy in their role and don't feel 'exploited'. But, you know, we have Indian workers so, we're as bad as the people that treat them like crap.

Just like bringing up investment brings up embezzlement, fraud, exploitation etc. Things like the contributions to charity made by the wealthy are never considered, which are quite considerable. I wonder if that would happen if capitalism didn't exist? In the UK, the 'wealthy' (particularly business owners) pay more than double the tax rate as 'normal people'. This is also going even higher now.

I'm not saying this makes it all better I just find it interesting that the socialists aways jump on bandwagons and pick and choose what points they want to use. In my view they don't consider the whole picture but, as I just said, I don't think I actually understand socialism any more.


KPj


Well there are different forms of socialism, as I am sure you are well aware of and different degrees of it. I can say I am a socialist, but that is not too say I agree with every other socialist out there on every issue, just as I am sure you don't agree with every other capitalist. It's not to say I don't believe people shouldn't be rewarded, or that everything in the world should be equal. I'll be the first to admit that back in school for instance, I couldn't stand being the guy in the group that did all the work, or the part of the group that did all the work, and have the slackers get rewarded for our hard work. Here's an analogy that I think fits the bill. Look at sports. Football (american football I should say) is the only sport I know of (I am no expert) that has a salary cap. This basically prevents one team from always being able to dominate (the Patriots will soon be a 4-12 team, even with Bellacheck or however you spell his name). It puts them all on an equal playing field...and its up to the brilliance of the coaching staff and dedication of its players as to who comes out on top.

I know I am talking about sports here, but I think some of these principles apply to the way our society is run. Most socialists just want an equal playing field. We don't believe the playing field is equal. I can't speak for all socialists obviously, so for me I think the solution is more government intervention. I don't mean big brother should be spying on everyone, but we should eliminate certain industries from the private sector and make them non-profit industries. This would be a very good start. The three most important would be education, health care, and food (except for obvious restauranty and frivolous types of foods). I don't think necessities should be profited upon. But a free market permits this. To sum it up quickly, I think capitalism vs socialism is the economic extension of liberals vs conservatives- which is why most democrats piss me off in America, because they all praise capitalism just to win votes. It is not popular to say we are socialist in the slightest. But I am not a pure socialist, just as I am sure you are not a pure capitalist because you probably believe in some government regulation in the economy just as I believe not everything should be dictated by the government. I just believe there should be safeguards in place to keep things from spinning out of control. We just disagree on how much regulation there should be. Does this make sense or am I crazy?


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:47 am 
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Ryan A wrote:
Yes. I agree mostly with nygmen.

I am capitalist and I am probably elitist as well. the best people deserve to make the most money because they take the most risks as a fraction of their value. Maybe they got lucky, but most of the time it is because they are smarter, more educated, more hard working.

I have come to accept that near the bottom there will be people who choose not to educate themselves/don't have the means because of poor choices of their ancestors/past circumstances. This is necessary for the best people to do the best work.

I am a firm believer that although a lot of the "in the trenches" and necessary labor is performed by 80% of the people, the important decisions/ideas/discoveries are made be less than 1% of the people. I care a lot more about keeping that 1% happy and producing the ideas that continually push society forward than making sure that 80% is satisfied.

People are different. Some people have more innate value than others (economically speaking) and nothing you can ever do socially speaking, can change that.

Now, I am not saying that the upper 1% should pay no attention to the "poor" people; they should always be working toward a better floor as well as a higher ceiling. I am just saying ultimately, it is the ceiling that matters most.

Since you made the point about the poor people having children, why I should care if some fool with no money decides he wants to have children he can not support?


Prove to me the richest people take the most risks. What is your reasoning behind this? So someone born into a family fortune took such a huge risk being born? Someone who invested in stock (the original topic of this thread) and strikes it rich takes a bigger risk than the electrician working on an electric tower? He is nothing more than a gambler (the investor), just one who isn't gambling on a game. No matter how educated he becomes with stocks and whatnot, he is gambling, and this will not cause him bodily harm. The CEO who works his way to the top? How is that risky? If anything, it is the epitome of not being risky at all, seeing as how they are supposed to get good grades, go onto college, start off in an entry level position at their job and work their way up. I can agree with the fact that it is either luck or the fact they are hard working as to the reason the have money though.

The best people to do the best work...? Have you ever heard of all men being created equal? That means when someone is born, the slate is supposed to be wiped clean on past ancestors (well, in theory). Necessary work does need to be performed, but you have the wrong mentality. It's not just so the "best" people can prosper. So how do you define these best people? Just because they are rich? Becoming rich isn't necessarily good for anyone but the person becoming rich. It doesn't prove "bestness". Believe it or not, if someone who became rich by real estate, stocks, business owner, etc choose not to do what he did and didn't become rich, they would be a bunch more lined up to take his place, just like with a common janitor. They aren't anything special.

The next couple paragraphs just seemed to say the same thing over and over again- keep this 1% where they are at and this other 80% where they are at (and what about the other 19%?). Yes, let's lock in positions in society. Let's tell this other 80% that there is a boundary they will never break. Let's diminish anyone's hope of doing great things simply because where they place in society. Is that what you are saying? How about we give everyone the same chance to do the best they can do, and go from there? If you think everyone has this chance...like I said, you are as idealistic as me.

I have something things to say before I answer your question

Darwin never meant his theory to be applied to human society. Your social Darwinist attitude has been used to justify some of the worst atrocities in history. No race or culture is superior to another. No class is better than another. They just happened to have the dice roll in their way. And if history proves anything it proves that the best 1% don't always have the greatest ideas. If that were the case the world wouldn't be in the state it is now, and looking at the last 100 years can prove that the top 1% isn't above petty squabbling. Pleasing the 1% at the sake of the rest of society just because they come up with ideas is just...heartless.

Which to answer your question- First off, children are born innocent and with a clean slate, so if the state does what a parent cannot do you might just have a productive member of society, which is more beneficial even in your grand scheme of ideas. You wouldn't want one of these children to grow up and harm one of the precious 1%? If you have a position for them the necessary work is getting done and that leaves other better people to move on to better things. And I for one think our society advancing forward is more than just technological advances. Your attitude of not caring would just go to show that we display the same barbarism of the cruel in the past, or even the enemies we fight today.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 10:00 am 
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Ironman wrote:
Then through the power of religion the right stirs up dumb gullible rural folk into voting against themselves.


Wow, I couldn't have said it better myself. The "moral values" that the right represents gets them elected- "people who voted for Bush cited the issues of terrorism and moral values as the most important factors in their decision" - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Sta ... ign_issues . Their economic concerns they have or should have are largely ignored.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 11:05 am 
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Rucifer - what you said makes sense. I only really call myself a capatilist because i'm deffinitly not a socialist. I'm a million miles away from being one, by the sounds of it.

All i would say is - we're not on a level playing field and men aren't created equal - never have been, and I can't see how we ever will be. Having your own unique advantages and disadvantages is just a part of life. I think a level playing field is a fantasy, to be honest. Remember David beat Goliath.

The same can be said for most things. If you applied that same logic to sports, then you have a strong argument to measure the T-levels of every athlete and then juicing the one's that are low to bring up to par with the rest. Then you rely purely on skill, preperation, etc.

BTW education and health care over here are Goverment run. However, you DO get private heatlh care firms, clinics, etc as well as private schools which you will get generally get a better service from.

I DO believe in regulation. I believe in regulation in the sense that I believe there should be a Law. People shouldn't break the law. If they do, they commit a crime. I believe in regulation in terms of, say, the banks and the way the have been giving out credit like it's free to anyone. The mortgages in particular that you could get before were a joke. I remember reading someone say that banks need to be tight fisted and boring again. I completely agree. When people apply for a mortgage that they can't afford to pay back, when the checks are done, it should come back 'Mortgage declined' instead of "well we can only give a mortgage for X amount. BUT! We CAN give you a loan ON TOP OF your mortgage for Y amount, and we'll consolidate the payment into one so that FEELS like a normal mortagage"... It was always going to come back and bite us on the a$$. I would be lying if I said I never took advantage of it, though. OK sounds like i'm deffinitly a capatilist then.

So, yeh. I believe in regulation :wink: The banks are another story though.

What I don't get is all this corporation bashing.

And, Rucifer, you're classing rich people purely as people born into a family fortune. Personally, i've seen exactly what it takes to run a succesful business. People who have never done it or been involved in it always think it's some luxury lifestyle - big cars, big boats, big cigars, big desks and loads of belly laughing (I call it the 'corportate laugh').

Well, when you're enjoying your xmas with your family, just remember that you have a business to run (because no one else cares - they finished at 5pm the day before the holidays!). Expect phone calls at 3-4am on a Sunday. Expect 7 day working weeks, and 18-20 hour shifts on a regular occasion. A ridiculious amount of travelling. When you do finally get home to your wife and kids, you've been out the house since 4-5am, been up and down the country, hardly ate anything, not stopped all day, phone still ringing as you walk in the door. Expect to try very hard to not be grouchy and an a$$hole to your family after a day like that and another one to follow.

And, pressure and risk? Don't make me laugh. Let me see - you have your house, your families wellfare, for startes. Then, you've got that same risk for every single person you employ. Do you think it's easy for a boss to turn up and tell half his staff they don' have jobs? When ther income, their family, their house depends on the job that YOU'VE given them?

It's not all cigars and rolexes. Not to mention, when the sh*t hits the fan - and, don't be fooled into thinking that the sh*t WON'T hit the fan at some point, but, when it does, guess who's heads on the chopping board? The boss. He's the guy that can go from half a million UP to half a million DOWN quicker than it took him to snip the end off his hand rolled cuban. All you need to worry about is getting another job.

I know exactly what it takes to chase an ambition like this and I can tell you that i'm deffinitly not cut out for it - no chance in hell. There isn't much truer than the quote "more money, more problems"

I still don't understand where people would get jobs without having guys that want to be their own boss and make as much money as possible. How the heck do you expand? (and create more jobs?) I know I wouldn't be able to go through all the above mentioned crap without getting the largest slice of the cake - and there is lies the problem with a level playing field. Human Nature. We always want more.

KPj


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 11:44 am 
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Rucifer wrote:
Hmm...is this serious? Look at the percentage of overweight/obese people in the country. Even if we said that only the uninsured fit this... that would leave 49% of the overweight in america come from some made up place (64% of the adults in this country are overweight- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Obesity_in ... ted_States . 64-15, 15 being the amount of uninsured=49). So really, I don't understand your logic regarding this. Actually I'll give you one thing right...85% of the country being insured is better than a lot of other places, but considering this is the mightiest nation on earth, it is silly that we are the only industrial nation that does not ensure all citizens have coverage. That fact that insurance is privatized is the reason for this. And before I hear that national health insurance would cause the quality to go down...I don't think its unreasonable for people to receive privatized care, as long as they are willing to pay, and that it would be better than the public care, but public care should be a basic right for all.



I didn't say that only the un-insured fit that criteria, i said the majority. Also there are people who are overweight and are generaly healthy. The way that they determine if someone is overwight is by BMI, not BF. Which is inaccurate.


Also you think Gambling is Investing, I fv(k said, for no one to say that in this thread!


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 2:06 pm 
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Rucifer wrote:

Prove to me the richest people take the most risks. What is your reasoning behind this? So someone born into a family fortune took such a huge risk being born? Someone who invested in stock (the original topic of this thread) and strikes it rich takes a bigger risk than the electrician working on an electric tower? He is nothing more than a gambler (the investor), just one who isn't gambling on a game. No matter how educated he becomes with stocks and whatnot, he is gambling, and this will not cause him bodily harm. The CEO who works his way to the top? How is that risky? If anything, it is the epitome of not being risky at all, seeing as how they are supposed to get good grades, go onto college, start off in an entry level position at their job and work their way up. I can agree with the fact that it is either luck or the fact they are hard working as to the reason the have money though.

The best people to do the best work...? Have you ever heard of all men being created equal? That means when someone is born, the slate is supposed to be wiped clean on past ancestors (well, in theory). Necessary work does need to be performed, but you have the wrong mentality. It's not just so the "best" people can prosper. So how do you define these best people? Just because they are rich? Becoming rich isn't necessarily good for anyone but the person becoming rich. It doesn't prove "bestness". Believe it or not, if someone who became rich by real estate, stocks, business owner, etc choose not to do what he did and didn't become rich, they would be a bunch more lined up to take his place, just like with a common janitor. They aren't anything special.

The next couple paragraphs just seemed to say the same thing over and over again- keep this 1% where they are at and this other 80% where they are at (and what about the other 19%?). Yes, let's lock in positions in society. Let's tell this other 80% that there is a boundary they will never break. Let's diminish anyone's hope of doing great things simply because where they place in society. Is that what you are saying? How about we give everyone the same chance to do the best they can do, and go from there? If you think everyone has this chance...like I said, you are as idealistic as me.

I have something things to say before I answer your question

Darwin never meant his theory to be applied to human society. Your social Darwinist attitude has been used to justify some of the worst atrocities in history. No race or culture is superior to another. No class is better than another. They just happened to have the dice roll in their way. And if history proves anything it proves that the best 1% don't always have the greatest ideas. If that were the case the world wouldn't be in the state it is now, and looking at the last 100 years can prove that the top 1% isn't above petty squabbling. Pleasing the 1% at the sake of the rest of society just because they come up with ideas is just...heartless.

Which to answer your question- First off, children are born innocent and with a clean slate, so if the state does what a parent cannot do you might just have a productive member of society, which is more beneficial even in your grand scheme of ideas. You wouldn't want one of these children to grow up and harm one of the precious 1%? If you have a position for them the necessary work is getting done and that leaves other better people to move on to better things. And I for one think our society advancing forward is more than just technological advances. Your attitude of not caring would just go to show that we display the same barbarism of the cruel in the past, or even the enemies we fight today.


I never said anything about being born into richness. I am talking about the complete lack of security top CEO's have at the top if they falter just the slightest bit, they are gone. As Jebus has said, investing is not gambling.

Men are not equal, period. Almost all recent evidence suggests this is the case. Check out "The Blank Slate: The modern denial of human nature" by Steven Pinker for a discussion by a psychologist.

Bestness means meaningful contributions to society. If someone invents some new hyper modern plaza that changes the way we think about living in confined space and as a result people flock to live in such efficient areas and suburbia diminishes, then yes, I consider this very important. Maybe there are only a handful of people in the world that could have this vision.

As to the 1% and 80%. I am talking about at current time. I said nothing about a lack of dynamical flow between the "classes". the leftover 19% is just a rough estimate of people who dont really do cheap labor but don't really create things. Perhaps engineers who slave away writing code that someone told them to write with no idea of what they are doing. They would probably fit into the 19% and be in a position to someday move into the 1%.

I agree that the misinterpreation of darwinism has been responsible for many bad things. Just because someone got it wrong in the past, does not mean it can not be done right in the future. I am not talking about classes, or races, or cultures (although to me, people who believe in hocus pocus are not good for society). I am talking about the innate distinction in a group of organisms according to the current theory of genetics.

Perhaps I have understated some of my socialist ideas you probably agree with. I think the state should strive to give children the best education, best healthcare, and best security possible (in the form of protection, heating, clothing, food etc) and then as they become older, they are left to use whatever talents they have to function in society. I would suggest that socialism is appropriate for younger people who have no protection and that adults should be governed by capitalism, perhaps with occasional chances to re-educate themselves. People make great decisions if they have the right information, so if they are educated, in my opinion, the state does not need to do much else.

There is an interested article on nytimes by steven pinker that I find instructive about "morality". It asks who is a better person, Mother Theresa, Bill Gates , or Norman Borlag. perhaps you can indulge me by answering that question?


Last edited by Ryan A on Tue Jul 21, 2009 8:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 4:10 pm 
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KPJ, things are very very different here in America. This is a country where lobbies call the shots. There is no country in Europe that is even remotely similar.

Ryan, CEO's are not gone if they make the slightest mistake. They have to completely screw the pooch. Even then they get what is referred to as a golden parachute. That and their obscenely large salaries are an utter disgrace to shareholders. I totally agree about the education though.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 8:20 pm 
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Indeed, all CEO's are not immediately released.

I do maintain they are under more pressure, work longer hours, and have to know more complicated things to be a great CEO.

Also, if someone like Steve Jobs (everyone's favorite CEO, he brought us the Ipod of course), were not at the top of Apple, how different would the situation be? I have a feeling the company would be worse off. Why? If they could find someone better, I am sure they would hire him. I would argue the company would not conceivable pay him anything more than what it is worth to the company to keep him there.

I am not saying a whole heartedly endorse corporations. I am saying I find it difficult to see how large scale innovation and production ( the only kind that now matters in society more or less) can get started without huge investments.

Ironman: I have not read Ayn Rand. I heard it sucked from almost everyone except one crazy obsessed girl.

Rucifer:

I feel you are missing the main point with great CEO's and that is they are very scarce. I understand bad CEO's are abounding but I don't think they make as much money as someone like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:30 pm 
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lol debating is fun.

Anyone know of any new Technology stocks?

I llove looking back in early 2000's and seeing how low apple was then and how much money just a little investment would be worth now.

Don't get me wrong, im not going to invest 1000 bucks into the newest tech company, I'll always do my homework first.

Also steve jobs isnt my fav CEO lol, Warren Buffet is. Richest man in the world (Through investing) and is going to give pretty much all of his money away to charaties.

Also a very good father, "The perfect amount of money to leave children is enough money so that they would feel they could do anything, but not so much that they could do nothing."

"Someone's sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago."

This guy is a genius !


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 9:53 am 
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Nevermind. Don't feel like arguing.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 07, 2009 10:12 pm 
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Back to investing... serious posts please.

I'm officially an investor, I just purchased 400 shares of Provident Energy Trust. At only 5.55, they issue dividends monthly at 12 cents, though recently it's down to 9 cents.

They have a DRIP plan but I don't know what my holder account number is lol, which I need to register.

Also I'm interested in Nat Gas, at such low prices, its perfect. I want to invest in an ETF like horizon beta pro nat gas bull etf. The company states that it tracks the "futures" price of nat gas. Which i don't really understand. But anyway, how does an etf that tracks commodities go to zero? Would Horizon's have to declare bankruptcy or is it possible they could just cancel the ETF?

I would be investing for long term, 5-10 years. It's trading at 1.97$


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