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America just got greater.


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#21 ajaxmonkey

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 01:03 AM

Once again. You Canadians know everything about America. Or think you do.

Well,
I don't know about Canada but since I lived and worked in Europe I can tell you that by European Standards unemployment in the US is about 50%.

Having a job in Europe means having a work contract, having healthcare, paying into the pension system, having payed vacation and payed sick leave, having unemployment benefits and so on. Less than half of Americans have any of that.

Instead they have two or three parttime McJobs with no benefits and can be fired without notice. When that happens they go and look for the next part time McJob and it goes on and on. There is no reason to go claim unemployment benefits cause unless you have a real job you wont get any. So yeah, unemployment is very low here in the US if you set the specs for employment really really really low.

That's something Europeans, and perhaps Canadians, don't seem to know.

#22 ajaxmonkey

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 01:11 AM

Don't get me started with Obama. A little bit of a background; I became citizen and voted democratic (registered democratic also) since Jimmy carter. I have on occasion cast a supporting vote for a local Republican candidate, but never a presidential. I voted Obama, the first time, and after the obstructionist stance of the Republicans I gave him a pass for not doing what he pledged he'd do and voted for him a second time in the previous election. 
 
Came to realize, he was a total fraud. His was really a Trojan Horse that the elites planted in the election process, in order to move on with their agendas. His entire cabinet was selected and appointed by Citigroup as soon he got elected. 90% of his policies were big business giveaways. Look at TARP a 3 Trillion giveaway to the banks, Obamacare another giveaway to the insurance industry, Nuclear arsenal and weapons upgrades, a giveaway to the Military Industrial Complex; All his masters that will (I predict) take care of him when he's out of office, as they did the Clintons, the first ex president to become a Billionaire after leaving office. 
 
What did he really do for the common man? He really created no new jobs; At least nothing anyone can make a living and support a family on. With all those Trillions he gave to the banks, why couldn't  he say, forgive some of the oppressing debt people are under and can't pay because of this stagnant economy? He didn't. He just let the banks pocket it all.
 
Whet it came out that the entire Democratic machine was conspiring to undermine Sanders' candidacy, (which I already knew before Wikileaks exposed it with proof) my mind was made up. To hell with the politicians. I want someone who does not care about politics. I want change, and the kind that Obama promised and did not deliver.
 
I have to say, Wednesday morning around 3:00 AM felt as good or better as it did 8 years ago when we picked Obama, before we knew what a fraud he was. I just pray for our sake, Trump will not be as huge a disappointment as him.


I think he was sincere when he first took over but that's just my subjective opinion. Anyhow, you are once again spot on with what you say about the banking bailout, pseudo job creation and the way the democratic party shafted Bernie Sanders.

#23 FriendofGreece

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 01:21 AM

As outsiders, we can only read what they say in the newspapers (about the lower unemployment rate). I did say that I did not know what kind of jobs those were.

 

In Canada, we also take into account part-time jobs when tallying the unemployment rate. Whether full-time or part-time jobs, you are subject to the same rules re vacation pay, statutory holidays, etc.



#24 ajaxmonkey

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 02:17 AM

Canada seems to be closer to north central Europe in this respect. Here in the states you get full benefits if you work for a larger corporation. And even among the largest there are black sheep, like Walmart for example. This may differ to some extend from region to region, but here in San Antonio there are only a hand full of serious corporate employers. Most jobs are at or slightly above minimum wage and part time. So the fact that San Antonio has a super high employment rate doesn't mean much.

#25 FriendofGreece

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 02:33 AM

I am actually concerned about the risk of war if Trump chooses some warmonger people for his team. 



#26 ajaxmonkey

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 02:41 AM

As I said in a previous post: There is talk of John Bolton being considered for the State department. If this is true, you'll have a guy who wants to Nuke Iran and dismantle the UN run US foreign policy.

#27 FriendofGreece

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 02:44 AM

Yes, I read what you posted, which made me make a little research. There are others too, it seems.



#28 Lekatis

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 12:24 PM

Do you really want to talk new jobs? Unemployment rates is a manufactured rate to make a regime look good at a time of elections. The actual unemployment rate in the United States is more closer to 20%. Anyone who stopped looking for work because nothing was available in his field or could not get anything worth his/her time, was dropped from the count. Anybody who's unemployment benefits ran out, guess what, was also dropped from the count. If you took, out of desperation a minimum wage job just to be able to buy a loaf  of bread while you moved back with parents/ relatives, you are also not counted. If you really want to get into rates of unemployment of black and brown youth, those are astronomical. They resemble rates seen in Spain or even our beloved Greece. Remember, if you graduate from school and can't find work, you are not yet counted as unemployed!

 

I have a child that graduated 5 years ago with a geology degree. In the years since he has worked in his field  a grand total of 1.5 months. The rest of the time he has been waiting tables in one restaurant or another, or selling cars at a dealership. I don't call that employment, at least not for a college graduate.

 

Trumps promise was that he will bring back jobs, jobs that were exported for cheaper labor. Manufacturers would produce something for pennies outside the US and bring it back and sell it at the same price as when it was made here. That's pure greed and profiteering. I get that tariffs would increase prices, but If I'm working at a decent salary, I can afford to buy, I could be making those things here again.

 

You are talking about where the money will come from to do what he promised. When TARP was implemented (the giveaway of cold hard cash to the banksters), where did it come from? I will tell you. It was done by a mechanism called "Quantitative Easing" which is nothing more than PRINTING MONEY!!!! Money would magically appear and be given away for free to the banksters; trillions and trillions of it. Did that hurt the value of the Dollar? No, not really, because everyone else was doing the same thing and their currency was devalued at the same rate, so it all equalized. There is your cash for the jobs projects. Only difference, this time the people will benefit instead of the unanswerable criminals in Wall Street. 



#29 FriendofGreece

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 04:57 PM

From what I read, Trump proposes to put tariffs on goods from China and Mexico. The thing is that the production has now shifted to other countries where wages are cheaper than China, like Bangladesh, India, etc. Should there be tariffs for those countries too? Furthermore, we are at the age of robotization, and even in China, they are laying off workers from the factories. 

 

Myself, I think it is a good idea to "bring back" jobs and produce in the US and in Canada, we should do the same because we lost our factories too. But how to go about "bringing back" the jobs is the issue.

 

The problem with all this is that corporations are profiting from the labour in the poor countries (paying rock bottom prices) and also profiting from consumers in the rich countries (charging high prices as if made in those countries). I don't know though whether tariffs is the way to go, because of backlash and retaliation which would affect US exports. Maybe the corporations should be taxed at a higher rate on profits when the goods they sell in the US are imported. Instead, Trump proposes to cut the tax rate, but I don't know if he meant corporate or individual tax rate.

 

Another thing is, even without tariffs, I think, in recent years, some US companies have been opening up factories again in the US. Also, I read that there is a reverse trend going on because the Chinese are now investing in the US and producing in the US instead of exporting in the US. Maybe the US government should provide incentives, not punishment, for foreign companies to come invest in the US and create jobs. If the US multinationals see that there are so many foreign companies coming, maybe they would themselves want to keep the jobs in the US too, I don't know.



#30 ajaxmonkey

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 06:00 PM

FoG:

where does this certainty that tariffs are a bad thing come from?
In the case of Greece for example tariffs would be a great idea. We got to a situation where we produce nothing and unemployment is sky high.
To keep government revenue up we slap 24% VAT on all things, including things produced in China. Does it not make sense in this situation to introduce a 24% tariff on all imported goods and at the same time abolish VAT.

This would keep the cost of imported goods at the same level it is now and at the same time give domestically produced goods a competitive advantage and create incentives for investment. But we are following the EU Corporate Free Trade doctrine instead and our country goes to hell.

The American economy is off course far more complex but there are nevertheless many aspects to it that would benefit from tariffs. I wouldn't hold my breath though. Don't think Trump will ever implement them. His team is already backpedalling on that one.

#31 admin

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 11:28 PM

Canada seems to be closer to north central Europe in this respect. Here in the states you get full benefits if you work for a larger corporation. And even among the largest there are black sheep, like Walmart for example. This may differ to some extend from region to region, but here in San Antonio there are only a hand full of serious corporate employers. Most jobs are at or slightly above minimum wage and part time. So the fact that San Antonio has a super high employment rate doesn't mean much.

 

Ah...you got to love American capitalism  :D You got to love how American capitalists (like Trump...) take care of the American people.

What's priceless is that those same American people who are screwed over by the American capitalism system for years voted in power a representative of this same system which is screwing them! Truly priceless!  :D

 

Talking about tariffs: What Trump suggested is probably the stupidest thing I've heard in years. Probably stupider than his suggestion of building a wall across the Mexican border.

 

What on earth makes you think that if Trump slaps a 24% tax on all imports will keep the cost of imported goods at the same level? This is absurd. If he slaps a tax of 24% on something then this something will go up in price by 24%, it's as simple as that.

 

On top of this, what makes you think that any large corporation will invest within the US for manufacturing jobs? There is a reason why large corporations moved manufacturing outside the US a long long time ago. As an example, let's say that it currently costs Nike 10 cents to manufacture a t-shirt in China. Why on earth would they move production back to the US where it would cost them $10 (or more!) to manufacture the same t-shirt? This is 101 capitalism. What Trump promised to those 50 year old + morons is not going to happen. This is not how capitalism works. I guess his voters will have to learn this the hard way.



#32 ajaxmonkey

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Posted 13 November 2016 - 12:02 AM

You are missing the point because you can't get it into your head that Trump did not win. He got even slightly less votes than McCain in 2008 or Romney in 2012. The same roughly 60 mil who voted for McCain and Romney voted now for Trump. But the 70 mil who voted for Obama in 2008 did not Vote for Clinton. Around 100 mil didn't vote at all. This was not a win for Trump it was a loss for Clinton.

Why?
What did Obama do in his 8 years to "Unscrew" average Americans?
What did Bill Clinton do?

If you guessed NOTHING you guessed right. The angry white Tea-Party-Evangelical crowd always votes republican. McCain, Romney, Trump... doesn't matter to them. That's not where the election was lost. Common sense people didn't come out to vote for Clinton cause there was no point to it. Her campaign was content to have a "Better than Trump Candidate". This was just not good enough for the many voters who didn't bother to show.

The 24% tariff example I mentioned was about Greece. But since you asked Why should foreign investment come to the US I'll tell you.

Cause the US is the largest and most profitable single consumer market in the world.
Because the US is, and has always been, a very attractive investment market for foreign Capital and a lot of foreign corps (VW, BMW, Toyota, Honda...) are already producing in the US. A smart tariff policy could easily increase manufacturing in the US.

This could add 10 USD on tariffs to an item Nike has produced for 10 cents in Bangladeshi slave labour. And if Nike wants to sell this item for 100 USD in the US they will gladly pay tariffs or consider to move production to the US. Otherwise they can go sell it in India. Lets see how that affects their profit margin.

#33 admin

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Posted 13 November 2016 - 03:48 AM

Do you think any American will pay $100 for a t-shirt which has a tag saying "made in USA" as opposed to paying $10 for the same t-shirt if it's made in China? The "made in USA" days are long gone. Raising taxes and adding tariffs didn't work for Syriza in Greece, and definitely not going to work for the US.



#34 FriendofGreece

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Posted 13 November 2016 - 04:13 AM

I can appreciate the example of Greece where there would be a 24% tariff on imports and VAT being abolished. Basically, tariffs are used in developing countries to protect budding domestic industries and would be appropriate in the case of Greece. 

 

Why I think tariffs are bad in the case of US:

 

If tariffs are slapped on across the board on all Chinese or Mexican imports, the US consumers are the first to suffer because not only they don't have jobs, but now everything they buy (since almost everything is produced by China) will cost at least 45% or 35% more. I say at least because the US corporations will make sure to make a profit too on the tariffs. It will take many years before the US, if it opens up factories, can produce things to replace everything that China or Mexico is producing now. That being said, there are many developing countries, other than China and Mexico, that produce low cost products. Will tariffs be slapped on them too? Won't they be going to complain at the World Trade Organization? 

 

China will be slapping tariffs on US exports in retaliation, or will switch to buy things from the EU, Africa, South America, etc., instead, such as airplanes, food, etc. The Chinese will make do without US products and instead concentrate on innovating their own products, etc. Who knows, maybe tariffs will be good for China at the end instead of punishing? The Chinese in any event consider challenges as also opportunities. 

 

As for the US consumers, if Nike starts producing in the US T-shirts for $10 and charges $100, how will the consumers pay if all they got is factory jobs at minimum wages? As long as the government does not do anything to control the profits, the consumers are the losers either way. Why I suggested the US government to tax the profits is because taxation is a domestic thing while tariffs are more like an "international" thing that can be appealed to the WTO. 



#35 ajaxmonkey

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Posted 13 November 2016 - 09:48 AM

Do you think any American will pay $100 for a t-shirt which has a tag saying "made in USA" as opposed to paying $10 for the same t-shirt if it's made in China? The "made in USA" days are long gone. Raising taxes and adding tariffs didn't work for Syriza in Greece, and definitely not going to work for the US.


He does pay 100 for it in the US if it has a NIKE label on it and that's the problem. So what exactly are you as a progressive liberal defending? The right of NIKE to exploit labourers in Bangladesh and skin, the admittedly idiot, consumers in the US? Is that your notion of free trade?
So where does that live American Job seekers? Work for Chinese wages or die is that it? Oh I forgot they could still become Uber drivers. Or maybe they should all go to college and become Doctors. Or maybe they should all go to NBC and get 630 k a year gigs there like Chelsea did. Do you have any Idea how many young people there are here in San Antonio alone who pile up 200 k in student loans and once they get their degree they end up making 10 - 15 USD an hour in the service industry. Is globalisation good for them?

And Syriza didn't impose tariffs on ANYTHING. They increased taxes on production AND, more importantly, Consumption (VAT).
The difference with VAT is that it affects all products, domestic and imported. It is a great way to increase revenue for a government that doesn't care about domestic production and jobs. The Government cashes in no matter where the shit comes from. Import duties on the other hand affect only imported goods. Introducing those duties while abolishing VAT creates a competitive advantage for Greek producers without increasing the cost for Greek consumers. You don't seem to get this and neither does Syriza. That's why we are getting nowhere.

#36 admin

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Posted 13 November 2016 - 06:45 PM

Anyway. No point on arguing on any of this yet. The guy is a tool. He's saying one thing one day and then the complete opposite the next. Nobody knows where he really stands on many important issues. We'll have lots to talk about in January when he moves into the White House.



#37 ajaxmonkey

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Posted 13 November 2016 - 06:56 PM

I never said he is great. To the contrary him becoming POTUS has a surreal look and feel to it. But there are lots of issues that Clinton, or if you like the "Progressive Camp", in the US and elsewhere, doesn't care about.

Brexit wins -> it was uneducated old whites.
Trump wins -> it was uneducated old whites.
If Lepen wins -> it was uneduated old whites.

The problem with that:

1. it ain't true
2. not even acknowledging that progressive perceptions may be off doesn't help

Slapping some makeup on a She-Goblin and saying vote for her cause she ain't the He-Goblin with the crazy hair is not enough to get people to engage.

#38 ajaxmonkey

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Posted 14 November 2016 - 08:38 PM

It is interesting to see hoe this election redefines the "WE".

WE the free world stand for tolerance, open borders, against racism, bigotry and protectionism.
And yet... the most significant part of our "WE" elected a man who has no problem with racist verbiage.

Did the WE just get smaller? Is it WE the EU-Europeans now? Minus the UK that is.

Bulgaria just brought the Russian fraction back in from the cold. In Hungary a Constitutional amendment that makes Trump look like a pro immigration activist failed 2/3 majority by 2 votes. Not because the liberal opposition prevented it. No, it was the far right that rejected it for not going far enough. And there is anxiety building as the elections in France are approaching. So where does this leave the "WE"?

#39 FriendofGreece

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Posted 14 November 2016 - 11:32 PM

It would be interesting to know since when the concepts of tolerance, open borders, anti-racism, anti-bigotry, anti-protectionism, multiculturalism, human rights, etc. exist in Western countries. I would tend to think that it is easier to have those concepts when you are at the top and above the others who do not have much like you or have nothing, after colonizations, wars, etc. Those ideals come stumbling down fast when the others rise up and encroach on your privileges.

 

With the ageing of Western countries and their minimal birth rates, it is a matter of survival economically, or simply survival due to the clash of civilizations that is happening in the EU. Is it even too late now?

 

Is free trade the culprit? I don't think so. The blue workers, the White uneducated men do not lose out because of people in Asia, in South America, in Africa, etc., stealing their jobs. Those people have been and are still working at slave's pay and in slave conditions, while polluting their rivers and air for the Westerners to have goods at dirt cheap prices that they pay with debt. The real culprit is the never-ending greed of the 1%. Unfortunately, the same 1% is the ones controlling your governments. What will more populist governments be able to do to fix the inequalities, I don't know.



#40 ajaxmonkey

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Posted 15 November 2016 - 03:42 AM

Here you go again with the "White Uneducated old Men". What about the "Young Brown uneducated Men" do you pretend that they don't exist?
Unfortunately they do exist, are far more numerous than the Uneducated White Men, way angrier and way more violent.

Did you forget the rioting, looting minorities in London?
Did you forget the 10's of thousand of European Jihad Tourists?
Did you forget the recent Attacks in France?

So yeah there are already angry Brown men who picked up arms. And what would you expect? The parents of those guys came to Europe for a better life and now their children find themselves in the Ghetto.

Around 120 mil EU Europeans (1 in 4 overall but 3 in 4 among young "Brown" men btw) is counted among the working poor. Wage dumping is to blame for that. And the reason behind that is low wages in the developing countries.

The elite are getting richer by the minute though. And the mechanics of that process that exploits labourers in developing country and enriches the elite while it impoverishes millions in Europe is called Free Trade.

And you say Free Trade is above suspicion?
Isn't this a bit dogmatic?




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