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The Phoenix Inn (843 posts)
25-December 03
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User is offline Today, 11:30 AM

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32 years old
December 10, 1986
South Africa

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  1. In Topic: The USA politics thread -

    Today, 07:26 AM

    Yip, I must say I hve noticed America has a weird habit of enforcing immigration policy not by official laws but at the discretion of border agents. My greencard was won by lottery, their seems to be an undertstanding that you don't win and immigrate the next day, you have time? How much time? Well at the discretion of the border control agent who first greets me when I try to enter the country. He has full authority to decide if I made an effort to immigrate, did I take too long. Maybe he got divorced that weekend, maybe he thinks my English isn't good enough. Who knows but there is no hard and fast rules. There is no way to go and be confident you did what your supposed to.

    It must be difficult and incredibly stressfull for borderline immigrants, such as asylum seekers, to live under that kind of uncertainty.

    Edit- Trump saying he could win the Afghan war in a week, he just doesn't want to kill ten million people? He thinks this is a clever thing to say. He clearly doesn't seem to understand any American president can theoretically kill ten million people in a week if they wanted to, there is a reason they don't. Killing ten million people in Afghanistan would mean the objective of the war has changed. The man cant stand being seen as weak.
  2. In Topic: Marvel Phase 3 films announced!

    Yesterday, 08:03 PM

    The TV shows will actually have the movie actors? That must be half the budget right there
  3. In Topic: Pity for the Poor

    Yesterday, 01:28 PM

    View PostChance, on 22 July 2019 - 01:06 PM, said:

    View PostTsundoku, on 21 July 2019 - 08:00 AM, said:

    Here's another interesting (but long) article about upward mobility, economics, data and oh, LOTS of things. About a dude named Raj Chetty, a professor of economics.

    Of particular note, a coincidental (or not, maybe) similarity between a map of slave ownership distribution 200 years ago and areas with low upward mobility now.


    It is a good article but something that I found strange with it is that they seem to assume that uppward mobility is possible for everyone. Sure more opportunity would likely be created but competition would also stiffen for the good jobs making for a comptency and education inflation with good positions likely getting increasingly high requirements.

    I think the problem is that money is essentially a symbol of time and its worth. Untill we live in a post-scarcity utopia like Bank's Culture its not possible for everyone to be at the top. There will come a point where for someone to move up, someone will need to move down unless automation, recycling and new sources of resources are found. I know some people hate this idea but I do think we need to make sure that life for those at the bottom is decent/good and better than it was in the past than we need to strive for a world where we are all in the middle. Though I think we can make the tower shorter, the people at the very top don't need to be that high, but I don't know how to shorten the tower without upending the foundation its built on.
  4. In Topic: Pity for the Poor

    Yesterday, 12:49 PM

    View PostGorefest, on 22 July 2019 - 12:10 PM, said:

    View PostCause, on 22 July 2019 - 11:53 AM, said:

    Okay my first thought on looking at this though, again, is not how hard this hypothetical single mother has it but that she should reduce her rent by 500 dollars. Now supposedly 1600 dollars for a one bedroom apartment is on the low end of Irving? There has got to be an option that's cheaper than 1600 a month. Insanse. 150$ on gas? Gas is cheaper in America than in SA and dare I say that Texas is probably cheaper than most states? This women spends more than double on gas than what I do.

    I'm afraid it is incredibly difficult to make any judgements or assumptions based just on the flat income/outcome review, especially if it is lacking this much detail. Firstly, the height of the rent will very much depend on the area. For instance, in the north of England you can probably rent a comfortable 4-bedroom semi-detached house for less each month than you'd pay for a tiny (broom cupboard) studio flat in central London. But at the same time, most of the available jobs will be in the London area. So to get and hold a job, or perhaps to have easy and close access to family who can help out with childcare (babysitting etc), you may be forced to focus on the higher-end rental places. Because childcare here in the UK tends to cost more on a weekly basis than rental cost on a monthly basis. It is stiffling. This example is of someone with kids, so these are very relevant and important considerations. On top of that you have to pay for your commute. The further out you live from work, the cheaper your rent might be but also the more expensive your travel. With gas etc, bear in mind that in SA you probably have a lot less gas needed on keeping your house warm (I simplistically assume that on average the temperatures are a fair bit higher, even in winter time). Plus even having a single kid in your house makes such cost sky-rocket: more cooking, more washing, more open doors and general waste that is difficult to control. So the fact that they spend much more on gas is actually quite in line with expectations.

    I thought the gas here meant only gas/petrol for a car?

    View PostTsundoku, on 22 July 2019 - 12:33 PM, said:

    View PostSilencer, on 22 July 2019 - 12:06 PM, said:

    There is not that much surplus wealth in the economy, especially when you factor in that millionaires hoard their money, they don't spend it at your local clothing store at a commensurate rate to their income.

    You're right, they don't. They spend it on obscene monuments to their own fragile egos. And who gets that money? Other rich bastards.

    It's like a financial circle jerk.

    Profit is the enemy of humanity.

    Yeah this is something I often think of, stuffing your money in your mattress removes it from the economy entirely. At least with Billionaires the money is either not liquid (its the value of their company) or invested in shares, bonds something etc. Still a human being cant spend 2 billion dollars never mind 80 so it does seem a shame they don't spend more. That said I feel like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet giving away their wealth is not going to work out as well as they think. I think it will end up being inefficient if not often end up creating perverse incentives.

    I think its a good thing we have inheritance tax (without it we would be ruled by the plutarchs eventually), I don't like the idea of a wealth tax though (unless it only starts at an extremely high number, much higher than most often proposed).

    I once toyed with the idea in my head that past a certaina mount of wealth, even if its as high as a billion you should have to create a trust and be forced to share it. Its not a tax, the governments not taking it from you but you should have you to pick someone, a wife, brother, child, friend etc who now shares it with you. Not a hundred percent sure, I'm not an economist but Id think a family of ten 100 millionaires would be better than one billionaire.
  5. In Topic: Pity for the Poor

    Yesterday, 11:53 AM


    Okay so I found this. Senetor is grilling a JP chase ceo about what he thinks about the fact that his employees cant afford to live on the entry salary of 16.50 an hour. She show sus her maths 1600 on an apartment, 400 on groceries, 500 on childcare. Lots seems to be missing but maybe it was rolled into the apartment cost I am not sure. I mean insurance etc.

    Okay my first thought on looking at this though, again, is not how hard this hypothetical single mother has it but that she should reduce her rent by 500 dollars. Now supposedly 1600 dollars for a one bedroom apartment is on the low end of Irving? There has got to be an option that's cheaper than 1600 a month. Insanse. 150$ on gas? Gas is cheaper in America than in SA and dare I say that Texas is probably cheaper than most states? This women spends more than double on gas than what I do.

    Now she is not real, these are hypothetical numbers which makes making suggestions or doing a deep dive on the numbers impossible but even with cost of living differences I am struggling to imagine that you cant live on 15$ an hour. Now if you tell me its true I have to believe you because you will know best. The cost of living differences I also think are not as extreme as you think:

    Petrol - USA=0.89c SA=1.15 per litre
    Article showing groceries are cheaper in the UK than in SA

    Now our rent is cheaper that's true, our electronics are much more expensive (not a big worry for the poor I guess). It takes an americn on minimum wage about 6-7 days to earn an iPhone, it take a south African 6-7 weeks, which is why most will never own one.

    I recently saw a comic panel on 9gag when after bying area 51 from the US government, Iron man explains to Capt America 'my broke isn't the same as your broke'. I think the world should be more like the US than SA but I cant help but think that their is some room for belt tightening.

    Also anecdotally, I realise that doesn't mean much, my experience of American tourists, exchange students etc is they have an unhealthy attitude to and reliance on credit


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  1. Photo


    10 Dec 2018 - 08:42
    and again
  2. Photo


    10 Dec 2017 - 07:18
    Happy birthday
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