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(USA Today)   Baby Boomer Jonah Goldberg complains that the Greatest Generation is coddled and selfish, and the cost of providing their unsustainable entitlements will bankrupt their descendants   (usatoday.com) divider line 113
    More: Ironic, Jonah Goldberg, ageism, President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Civilian Conservation Corps, entitlements, G.I. Bill, legacy costs, bankruptcy  
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8912 clicks; posted to Main » on 11 Mar 2013 at 9:50 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-03-11 08:48:42 AM
19 votes:
Jonah Goldberg mixes the wordsmithing of Bill O'Reilly with the smarminess of Bill Maher, which wouldn't be so bad except he's really on the intellectual level of Victoria Jackson.
2013-03-11 10:03:17 AM
8 votes:
I don't mean to belittle or demean the heroic efforts and sacrifices of those who served in World War II. But the idea that a whole generation deserves credit for what only some did is little more than an attempt to buy glory on the cheap.

During World War II, approximately 16,000,000 Americans served in the military. There were over 300,000 Americans killed. Those at home worked in factories converted to wartime production, or went without necessities because supplies were routed to troops. The entire nation came together and worked to defeat an enemy.

Meanwhile, today people slap a yellow magnet on their bumper and think they're "supporting the troops".

Jonah Goldberg is beneath contempt.
2013-03-11 09:54:04 AM
7 votes:

2wolves: Doughy Pantsload hasn't said anything this dumb in days. Good to see he's still being paid to dare to be stupid.


This isn't all that stupid.  How often have we seen members of the Greediest Generation screaming about how we need to stop socialism but don't you dare touch their Social Security or Medicare?  What better proof of that is there than Paul Ryan trying to "reform" Medicare by utterly destroying it for people under 55, but keeping it for the old because he didn't want to dare offend them.  We had to see Medicare totally destroyed, but they got to keep the existing system without changes.

And I still haven't mentioned how the Greediest Generation could have fixed Social Security for decades, but never did because it would have meant a very slight increase in their own taxes.  Now my generation will have to see a huge tax increase in the future to keep paying for them.
2013-03-11 08:32:14 AM
7 votes:
Boomers end around '64. Born in 1969, Goldberg is firmly Generation X.
2013-03-11 11:00:57 AM
6 votes:

Saiga410: GoldSpider: Lord_Baull: The answer to your question lies in the question:
Who benefits from average household credit debt?

That has little to do with whether or not people are spending money they don't have.

dready zim: If you think that then your understanding of the graph is dillusional.

What does an income/productivity graph tell us about people's spending habits?

(hint: nothing whatsoever)

I do not understand peoples drooling level of outrage over the productivity to income gap.  Why yes me opperating an excavator does the work of 30+ guys with shovels... but that does not entitle me to 30X minimum wage earnings.  Or a codemonkey replacing/obsoleting the majority of an accounting staff.


So then, if the CEO is actually managing 1/30th of the people, why is HE entitled to 30x the compensation for the same amount of productivity of the business as a whole?
2013-03-11 10:06:56 AM
6 votes:
Goldberg? Gold...berg? Huh. You know who else had a country full of Goldbergs?

Seriously, the greatest generation also includes those who grew up in the Depression--we were a country devastated by an economic system that couldn't give a crap about most of the men and women who fought so hard to save that economic system. Things were so bad (my ancestors ate boiled chicken feed for hot cereal) that countless men who volunteered to serve before or just after Pearl Harbor were turned away because of medical problems caused by years of deprivation. No teeth, rickets, bad lungs, bad spines, numerous problems associated with no shoes, no proper clothing against the cold, riding the rails for years on end, poor diet.

We made a deal with that generation. Social Security, bank reform, Civil Conservation Corps, the WPA and any number of things that gave a American youth a safety net to grow up in. And when we sent them to war to fight against fascism (and against many businesses that were tied to American corporations) we made sure that if they came home, they could buy a safe house with a reasonable mortgage, go to college and get an education, etc. We owed them that much for the sacrifices they made before the war and during it.

Pliny the Elder said "Home is where the heart is". That was a popular phrase during the Depression because many of that generation didn't have a home except a patch of grass or the floor of a freight car.

Jonah has no idea.
2013-03-11 10:02:19 AM
6 votes:
Why do you blame people for wanting what was PROMISED them?

I left my previous job, because my current employer made me an offer that included benefits. I accepted the job, because of what was offered.

Our current government made us all sign a contract to pay into Social Security, and gave us all a number. In signing for that card, we signed a contract, that if we payed into that fund, there would be benefits for us, when we retired. The government "borrowed" money from that fund and never payed it back. Now they say it's "broken". It is only broken, because the government broke it themselves when they stole all the money from it.
2013-03-11 09:14:07 AM
6 votes:
I think his point is that this is a generation of Americans who took a huge bit of government subsides (money) then, and continue to take a huge bit of subsides (money) now. But vote for their following generations to not get those same subsides (money), because fark you I got mine, and I fought in a war (or was a cook somewhere behind the lines).
2013-03-11 10:09:04 AM
5 votes:

Pick: Why do you blame people for wanting what was PROMISED them?

I left my previous job, because my current employer made me an offer that included benefits. I accepted the job, because of what was offered.

Our current government made us all sign a contract to pay into Social Security, and gave us all a number. In signing for that card, we signed a contract, that if we payed into that fund, there would be benefits for us, when we retired. The government "borrowed" money from that fund and never payed it back. Now they say it's "broken". It is only broken, because the government broke it themselves when they stole all the money from it.


No contract was signed. Social Security card was made necessary to track taxes. Social Security tax is just another tax on income that has a cap. You want to fix SS? Remove the farking cap. Yes this will be a tax increase, but only on those who are all ready making more then the cap and on employers.
2013-03-11 10:06:05 AM
5 votes:
When SS was formed, it was meant to provide about 3 years of support, the average lifespan was 68 back then, it's gone up by 6 years since and the retirement age hasn't been adjusted.  Want to fix SS?  Raise the retirement age.
2013-03-11 12:31:16 PM
4 votes:

GoldSpider: SacriliciousBeerSwiller: And the former because those kids will be the ones taking care of your own wrinkly arse in a few years. It's all about karma.

It's more about teaching kids a little perspective, about how good most of them have it compared to other places in the world.  Perhaps we can expect to be treated better in our old age if we stopped teaching our kids that the world revolves around them.



We have worse wealth disparity then NIGERIA. Yes, really. We jail more people then CHINA - total, not just per capita. Again, yes, really. We're falling behind in education every year, our infrastructure is poorly maintained and our science committee is packed with people who believe that science are "lies" straight from the pits of hell - and chaired by a freaking Christian Scientist, the people who literally believe that the physical world is an illusion and that everything can be fixed with prayer. Also, the same douchebag behind SOPA.

Perhaps instead of blindly asserting "how good most of them have it compared to other places in the world" we could actually take a look at how far we've allowed things to fall apart - so perhaps we can fix them. I hate to tell you this but by almost any metric you want to pick much of the industrialized world has begun to leave us in the dust. We're still coasting by on the legacy left us by our forefathers... but we're allowing it to rot.
2013-03-11 10:21:58 AM
4 votes:
Robert Reich says, "The idea that most Americans have been living beyond their means is pure fantasy perpetrated by a small minority at the top whose means have gone through the stratosphere."
2013-03-11 09:59:07 AM
4 votes:
One of the egalitarian precepts that all Americans are supposed to subscribe to is the idea that one citizen isn't more worthy than another, simply by accident of birth.

There is tremendous irony in Goldberg writing those words.
2013-03-11 09:24:37 AM
4 votes:
I don't mean to belittle or demean the heroic efforts and sacrifices of those who served in World War II. But the idea that a whole generation deserves credit for what only some did is little more than an attempt to buy glory on the cheap.

Um, really? I'm 40, all of my grandparents lived through the depression and the war by scrimping and saving and sacrificing, life was very hard back then.

To say that only the people actually fighting the war deserve credit is total bullshiat.
2013-03-11 08:57:31 AM
4 votes:
NRO Symposium 2013: Returning the GOP to Glory in 2014 and Beyond

PowerPoint slide #1: Alienate the only voting block keeping you afloat as a national party
2013-03-11 03:47:06 PM
3 votes:

PsiChick: numb3r5ev3n: What?

Tigger: <I>The Depression--the  Great Depression--was the  result of WWII. It came after, </i>

jigga what?

...And, after Googling, my history textbooks are their usual fail. Well. Nm, then.

(insert pie pic here)


lol, well that would certainly explain the confusion then. That's a heck of a textbook though... It wasn't one of those home-school jobbies with a picture of a dude riding a raptor in place of the Earth's natural history section, was it?  ;)


GoldSpider: mongbiohazard: You're bringing up some theoretical person you can feel superior to

Theoretical?  That person was me up until two years ago.  I had no idea how much money I was spending or what I was spending it on.  All I knew was that I was barely breaking even on my best months.  Then I started budgeting, which led to cutting unnecessary expenses, which led to having some money left over to put away for home improvements and retirement.

No, it didn't change the world, but it changed MY world.  At least more so than sitting around, bitter and hopeless about how the man was keeping me down, wishing for an altruistic third party to show Washington the error of its ways.



So because YOU were bad at managing your money that means the reason the average household can no longer survive on one income, and Americans can no longer save for retirement, and all the other macroeconomic data are all cause because everyone is bad at managing their money.

You're projecting. Really. I'd be hard pressed to invent a more obvious example, actually. I mean you pretty much all but just came right out and said "I'm projecting".

The income for the vast majority of Americans has been in freefall for decades. Ordering pizza too much is not the cause of that... and in fact ordering pizza too much is more demand which, would actually help bolster the economy. That money doesn't just go nowhere, it circulates through the economy. Same as when the minimum wage is raised and the usual knuckleheads come out against it - because supposedly it will hurt business for their customers to have more money to spend, which pretends like money given to the poor is money that has dissapeared from the economy. When in reality savings - especially all that dynastic wealth being built up in utterly obscene amounts by the new age robber baron class - are money that leaks out of the economy.
2013-03-11 03:44:03 PM
3 votes:
i.imgur.com
2013-03-11 11:31:24 AM
3 votes:

GoldSpider: Girion47: it isn't easy to adjust your circumstances when you have very little maneuver room. Without a cash buffer small mistakes can completely sink someone who is poor, whereas the rich person doesn't have to worry about making rent, paying to register the car, paying for car insurance, having health insurance without deductibles to cover that unexpected broken limb, having enough vacation time to recover from that broken limb or childcare situation that called them away from work.

I'm sure I can make allowances for "shiat happens" stuff like medical emergencies (hence why I support single-payer).  But if you're asking me to bet against the idea that your average American is stupid and impulsive with money, I'm afraid I can't take that bet.


I won't argue they're stupid and impulsive, we don't teach fiscal responsibility in school.  But what I am arguing is that the wage stagnation/decrease has caused the poorer stupid/impulsive to have less resiliency to their mistakes.
2013-03-11 11:22:40 AM
3 votes:

Saiga410: GoldSpider: Lord_Baull: The answer to your question lies in the question:
Who benefits from average household credit debt?

That has little to do with whether or not people are spending money they don't have.

dready zim: If you think that then your understanding of the graph is dillusional.

What does an income/productivity graph tell us about people's spending habits?

(hint: nothing whatsoever)

I do not understand peoples drooling level of outrage over the productivity to income gap.  Why yes me opperating an excavator does the work of 30+ guys with shovels... but that does not entitle me to 30X minimum wage earnings.  Or a codemonkey replacing/obsoleting the majority of an accounting staff.



I don't think you understand what it represents then. Productivity gains represent more work squeezed from each worker. What that really means is more wealth.


Those productivity gains used to fairly well match the rises in income across all income groups, but since the business community was able to buy our government out from under us (in particular one party worse than the other) they've been able to get the laws they need to protect them from having to share that wealth with anyone who worked for it.

So in the past when you got a better excavator and were able to do more work then the your company would make more money and everyone who worked for them would share in those gains over the years. This is normal, and supposed to be how our economy operates.

NOW, however, instead of getting a new excavator in many cases employers are just making us work more hours, or simply pushing us to work more to make up for others that may have been laid off or not hired in the first place, and then taking that extra cash and hanging it out in giant duffel bags to the very few at the top... largely for being born in to the upper class families that afford them the degree and contacts which allow them to perpetuate the social classes.

Those folks at the top aren't the ones needing to work harder, but they have been able to buy changes to the law that make them have to worry, much, much less about taking care of their employees. Taking care of your employees and making sure they are well-compensated used to be a civic duty... now it's seen as weakness. The incentives and pressure are on businesses to soak their vulnerable middle and lower income workers more and more every year. And the workers have no power to resist any more... Private sector unions have been decimated across the country by that bought government and the laws and taxes have become gradually more and more tilted against the poor and middle class.

There is just no one actually fighting for the poor and middle class, and there's instead a whole cadre of who Marx would have called "useful idiots" who have been tricked in to fighting against their own interests like some society-wide Stockholm Syndrome.
2013-03-11 11:03:51 AM
3 votes:

GoldSpider: Girion47: yes

[images2.dailykos.com image 550x290]

I don't think that graph says what you think it says.



That the very welathiest few have been eating everyone else's lunch for decades now? That we're all working harder (productivity gains) and seeing less and less money every year (nearly flat income growth line + inflation and cost of living increases = everyone representaed by that line has been getting poorer and poorer)? Because I'm pretty sure that's exactly what that graph says.

That's what's been happening, and IMHO it's a major contributor to many or all of our economic problems. Without the wealth they once had, the middle class no longer has the cash needed to start businesses as much, cannot spend as much and therefore cannot provide the economic activity we need need to bolster the economy and lift it out of the doldrums it's in and cannot save as much as they need to retire. Living a life of ever shrinking means also encourages people to get themselves deeper and deeper in to debt.

Meanwhile, the few members of the club who have been eating all our lunches just amass ever larger piles of damaging dynastic wealth because they've been waging class war quitely for decades. They finally figured out at some point that they could pool their vast resources and buy our very government out from under us, and that's what's happened.

Our congresspeople don't spend more than half their time "fundraising" for nothing... and they don't do it for the good of the country either. It's a system designed to keep our government under the thumb of the new robber baron scumbags of our century.
2013-03-11 10:29:25 AM
3 votes:

GoldSpider: neversubmit: Robert Reich says, "The idea that most Americans have been living beyond their means is pure fantasy perpetrated by a small minority at the top whose means have gone through the stratosphere."

It's rich people's fault that the average household credit card debt is in the neighborhood of $6,000?


yes

images2.dailykos.com
2013-03-11 10:20:10 AM
3 votes:
Sorry, Granny. Despite the fact that incomes for the rich have quadrupled in the last twenty years, we just can't seem to find the money to keep you alive.

Love,
The Beltway Folks
2013-03-11 10:16:23 AM
3 votes:

Sudlow: People of the "Greatest Generation" received back in benefits everything they ever contributed to Social Security within a couple of years. Us Boomers will take longer, but we'll get more back than we put in. You kids are F'd. It takes a while, but all Ponzi Schemes eventually fall apart.



Another lie. Social Security is not a Ponzi Scheme, it is a welfare program supported by an income tax. The maximum amount of income and tax you can be charged for is capped. Remove the cap and Social Security will be fine.

The reality is this is just another way for Republitards to deflect the fact that US taxes are too low by half. Taxes on US citizens need to double, or 1/2 the government budget needs to be cut, or we need to find a happy middle ground somewhere between cutting government spending and raising taxes. The idea that the US budget can be balanced on cuts to that budget alone is insane.

Why do you continue to believe the lies and the lier that spread them?
2013-03-11 10:06:57 AM
3 votes:

Pick: Why do you blame people for wanting what was PROMISED them?

I left my previous job, because my current employer made me an offer that included benefits. I accepted the job, because of what was offered.

Our current government made us all sign a contract to pay into Social Security, and gave us all a number. In signing for that card, we signed a contract, that if we payed into that fund, there would be benefits for us, when we retired. The government "borrowed" money from that fund and never payed it back. Now they say it's "broken". It is only broken, because the government broke it themselves when they stole all the money from it.


There is no contractual right to receive Social Security benefits.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flemming_v._Nestor

http://www.ssa.gov/history/nestor.html

Now get back to work, citizen.
2013-03-11 10:06:29 AM
3 votes:
It is quite annoying to be told that I have to "work harder" because the generation before mine couldn't be bothered to pay back all those loans they took out of FICA.

Especially since that generation's lack of computer and Internet skills are why I have to work so much damn harder to pick up their slack in the workplace anyway.

/Full disclosure: Parts manufacturing industry, deep red state
2013-03-11 10:04:54 AM
3 votes:
Wow, news from 1992 has reached the republican party.

Hey, here's some more tidbits you'd probably like to know:

1) nobody cares if you're gay and you want to get married
2) mexicans aren't the only people here illegally
3) Dick Cheney shot a man in the face. The guy apologized for being in Dick Cheney's gun's line of sight.
4) Trickle Down economics doesn't work.
2013-03-11 09:51:51 AM
3 votes:
I'm going to take very seriously a discussion on selfishness and entitlement from somebody whose every job interview has begun with him saying, "MOOOOOOOOM!!"
2013-03-11 02:21:43 PM
2 votes:

GoldSpider: mongbiohazard: We're getting exactly what was intended, and we've been voting for the people who want things to play out this way.

No argument there. But what's your short-term solution? Torches and pitchforks?


Lurching from one short term solution to the next is part of how we got here. When you're so busy worried about which politician is going to put out the latest fire you're not as likely to notice that they are the ones holding the gas can and matches. We need real solutions, not bandaids.

A large component of what we need is a new political party devoted to protecting the interests of the common American with policies to match instead of platitudes and the same old bullshiat policies which the LAST guys tried to no avail. I'd also throw public campaign financing and an end to gerrymandering in there on the new party's platform.

GoldSpider: I agree that voters need to be better educated about the economy and national budget. However pretending that there aren't a lot of people who have no idea how to manage their personal finances doesn't solve anything at all.


Again, that is a red herring. You're bringing up some theoretical person you can feel superior to, but that person does not control the macroeconomic forces which are plaguing us. Someone buying lunch too often instead of bringing it home doesn't have anything to do with the wholesale, disgusting plundering of average household wealth and income we've allowed here in America since the late 70's.

It's not a solution, it's a talking point which is part of the problem.


PsiChick: That's not what I'm arguing--I'm arguing that treating people who lived through the Depression like the people who actually did help liberate Europe is insane. Praising their support is good, but the Depression? Yeah, that's a seperate topic. Not better or worse, just different, and they need to be treated differently.


First, you're talking about a lot of the very same people. The national motivation and government spending from the war is part of what pulled us out of the depression.

Second, I'm gathering that you're unfamiliar with a lot of what went on back home during the war - which is what both Goldberg and the farker you were responding to was talking about. There was a concerted national effort at the time, and people here at home suffered quite a bit. Everyone pitched in, like one big team, unlike the wars of today. Life at home in the US was severely affected in material ways for most people.

"Victory gardens" were a thing not because everyone had cushy lives and needed a hobby... they were a thing because there were shortages of FOOD. It wasn't just the troops that won the war... the whole society pitched in together to win it. American soldiers didn't necessarily have the best equipment per se.... what they had was the strongest economy back home supporting them with an unending stream of goods and services, and it was this which allowed us to prevail.
2013-03-11 02:02:02 PM
2 votes:

TheShavingofOccam123: 2. personal debt



Personal debt actually took a nosedive after the 2008 crash. One good lesson Americans seemed to have learned is the risk associated with all that debt hanging over their heads when economic conditions worsen.

What we really have to worry about is income and wealth. We simply cannot continue to impoverish everyone in the country except for a small societal elite and still expect the economy to function properly. Every time I talk to someone who is still stuck on supply-side economics I ask them, "If the consumers have less money every year - and we only concern ourselves with making sure the rich have all the money they need - then who will supply the demand the economy needs in the future?"

I've yet to hear an answer back which doesn't blatantly ignore the subtance of the question. I just get screeds about the supply side of our economy, like they used up all their mental power understanding half of the economy (supply) and have nothing left to even try and consider the other half (demand). They also always seem to ignore the fact that the demand side of the economy - the consumers - also provide supply as well.

Those wages people get shouldn't just keep them with just enough food and shelter to physically survive... The poor and middle class (middle class primarily) uses what they can save to start new businesses, ensuring competition and changing the market's landscape... Small companies start, become big, knock out the big guys and then take the place of the old big companies - only to be supplanted in time by another young challenger. It's a cycle of life which is threatened by falling wages. If you have a great idea but no money in the bank to bring it to fruition then we lose that competition, we lose that innovation, and we're stuck with slowly consolidating oligopolies protected from competition.
2013-03-11 01:45:04 PM
2 votes:

PsiChick: vernonFL: I don't mean to belittle or demean the heroic efforts and sacrifices of those who served in World War II. But the idea that a whole generation deserves credit for what only some did is little more than an attempt to buy glory on the cheap.

Um, really? I'm 40, all of my grandparents lived through the depression and the war by scrimping and saving and sacrificing, life was very hard back then.

To say that only the people actually fighting the war deserve credit is total bullshiat.

So that single mother who lives down the street doing exactly the same thing deserves the same credit, right? Because being poor sucks, but it's not the same as fighting in WWII. They are  vastly different.


I think you missed the point. WWII was a national effort, unlike the wars of today. During WWII life was harder for everyone. The folks on the front lines were being supported meaningfully by the folks back home. Shortages were rampant, rationing was the norm. Everyone pulled together and worked harder across all of society - in fact, major womens' lib gains were made because the shortage of men (because so many had been sent to fight) go so bad that it meant many employers were finally forced to start considering hiring women. Sure, the folks back home weren't getting shot at but pain was clearly shared across society in many ways and Goldberg's assertion to the contrary is horrendously idiotic.

Fast forward to today, though, and our modern wars are being fought in ways to intentionally avoid letting Americans feel the pain. We're not rationing and working more to support our troops, we're not seeing services curtailed as the war goes on.... instead we're deficit funding the wars so that current voters won't be as interested in holding our government accountable for it. This is the kind of warfighting we're engaged in NOW, so schmucks like Jonah Goldberg are seeing our past wars through the same rose colored glasses.
2013-03-11 01:33:17 PM
2 votes:

GoldSpider: mongbiohazard: Greater financial literacy would always be a good thing.... but it's simply not the cause of our economic problems.

It's not THE solution, no, but it's the best we can do, short-term, until our representatives decide to pull their collective heads out of their asses.


Sorry, but no. Our representatives don't have their collective heads up their asses... This IS the plan. We're getting exactly what was intended, and we've been voting for the people who want things to play out this way. Everyone should manage their money the best they can, (big 'old "duh" on that one) but you simply can't manage what you don't have in the first place. What you're suggested is not "the best we can do" - it's really no solution at all.

By continuing the perpetuate the myth that poor people are all simply irresponsible, however, you help to perpetuate the problem. By doing so you're spreading and feeding the lies which are used to help divide us so that the new age robber barons can continue their plunder until nothing is left.
2013-03-11 01:21:39 PM
2 votes:

Girion47: Sudlow: People of the "Greatest Generation" received back in benefits everything they ever contributed to Social Security within a couple of years. Us Boomers will take longer, but we'll get more back than we put in. You kids are F'd. It takes a while, but all Ponzi Schemes eventually fall apart.

Which is why I'd like to see it ended immediately.   Hell take the money I've paid in...whatever.  Even require me to withhold 12% of my paycheck(and require the company to give that other 6%) and put it in a retirement fund that I can direct.   Just farking end social security.


The problem with social security is that people keep thinking it's a retirement plan.

It isn't, it's an INSURANCE PROGRAM. It isn't just for old people, it's also for the handicapped, disabled, orphans, widows, etc. When my Dad got sick and had to give up his practice SSI saved our asses from horrible poverty.

The point of the program is that the weakest members of society would have food and rent money, that's it. This traditionally includes the elderly.

The Greatest Generation bucked tradition (middle-class wise at least) because they lived through the Depression and WW2 and thus saved money.

Boomers are going to be poor elderly because of the great recession, too much of their "wealth" is in their house, lack of planning, supporting adult children, etc.
2013-03-11 12:55:14 PM
2 votes:

GoldSpider: mongbiohazard: That's not a rational explanation for the metrics we see.

I won't disagree that the state of wages and the economy are exacerbating the problem; they are.  But credit overreach isn't a new problem.  There ought to be a required semester course of financial literacy in high school.  Get to them before the predatory banks (with their "free" credit cards) do.



John Boehnor gets an erection every time you bring that up in response to the very scary wealth and income trends of America.

Greater financial literacy would always be a good thing.... but it's simply not the cause of our economic problems. It's a distraction many of us have been conditioned to bring up when these serious structural problems we have are explained. It's simply a means to help reinforce the odious "well they should just work harder" nonsense which only serves to dehumanize our fellow Americans and give us an excuse to pretend we're superior people to the average American - which is actually US.

Every time you make an argument like that some obscenely wealthy people are laughing their asses off at having tricked you in to doing some of their dirty work for them for free.
2013-03-11 12:18:47 PM
2 votes:

GoldSpider: Girion47: it isn't easy to adjust your circumstances when you have very little maneuver room. Without a cash buffer small mistakes can completely sink someone who is poor, whereas the rich person doesn't have to worry about making rent, paying to register the car, paying for car insurance, having health insurance without deductibles to cover that unexpected broken limb, having enough vacation time to recover from that broken limb or childcare situation that called them away from work.

I'm sure I can make allowances for "shiat happens" stuff like medical emergencies (hence why I support single-payer). But if you're asking me to bet against the idea that your average American is stupid and impulsive with money, I'm afraid I can't take that bet.



That's not a rational explanation for the metrics we see. What you just repeated there is simply a comforting fiction created to help you feel superior to - and thus dehumanize - "those people". It's a method being used to divide us so wealthy, organized, interests can continue violating us wholesale.

The truth is that the cost of living has been rising steadily over the years, inflation has been trodding along - and wages have been FLAT. That means the vast majority of people, whether they realize it or not, are poorer and poorer every year for DECADES now.

It's not that the "your average American is stupid and impulsive with money" - it's that the average American has had less and less money every year since the late 70's. We simply can't afford the same kind of financial resposibility we used to have. The resources are simply not there. Essentially what you're doing is looking at people whose wealth has been systematically stolen from them year after year and saying, "Why can't you just keep saving that money you don't have any more?"

This is a very bad trend - for business as well as people. Our economy is based on consumption. Who's going to buy the products necessary for a functioning free market economy when we keep impoverishing the vast majority of Americans? It's a bad long-term trend for business, and it makes our economy less able to recover from economic downturns. Eventually it will cripple our economy entirely.
2013-03-11 11:42:41 AM
2 votes:
Well, yes, it is the "Greatest Generation's" fault---for cursing us with the baby boomers. I'll let historians and child psychologists figure out where the hell they went wrong.

At any rate, those of the Greatest who are still with us are approaching the end of their lives. They're no longer their grandchildren's and great-grandchildren's biggest problem. A far bigger predicament is the Boomers. As soon as they started obtaining political power in any great numbers the boomers started mooting legalizing euthanasia for dear old Mom and Dad. Death with dignity my ass. All the boomers wanted was their inheritance before it all went to the doctor. Now they're screaming bloody murder about

My "dear old Mom and Dad," unrepentant boomers, spent every penny they ever made and then some on themselves. They neglected their own parents till they died, and turned up at the funerals for their payday. (My father's mother had the good sense to leave him nothing. My mother's inheritance, proceeds from the sale of the old family home, went to pay off outstanding debts.) Needless to say, they refused to pay a cent for the university education of any of their children.

The last straw was when my mother openly opposed my marriage to Mrs. Fuccon, accusing her to my face of being a golddigging slut. All my fiancee had done, of course, was get in the way of my mother's own plans to cut the old man loose when he could no longer work and was forced to retire on God alone knows what, he's so far in the hole even now, and come up to Canada to go on Canadian medicare (which she considers a far better scam than US Medicare) and spend the last 25 years of her life having her "perfect son" wait on her hand and foot and help herself to every penny he'dmake over his working life and then some. Dear old Mom thought her "perfect" (read: forever alone) son was rich, and had no intention of letting someone else go near her payday.

Not bad for a kid whose mother was convinced he was mentally ill (I was a loner, liked books and hated sport) and would never amount to anything, and who only had him at all because she was too dumb to use contraceptives and (thanks to a Catholic upbringing) didn't have the wits or guts to go to Planned Parenthood to get rid of it---and admitted as much to him without shame. Put plainly, she'd have strangled me in the cradle if she'd been bright enough to figure out how to make it look like cot death. Her attitude turned on a dime once I had something she could use.

As for the slut part---Phil, if you're reading this, if my mother's the best you could do in the bored housewife department you can't have been trying that hard.

If it were left to the children of the baby boomers, whose inheritance was mortgaged several times over to pay for the boomers' indulgences, to pay out of pocket for their parents' "golden years," the risk is very real for all too many of them that the children would consider what the old buggers really deserved, and refuse to pay for any "medical care" that didn't involve a needle containing a massive overdose of sodium thiopenthal. As it is, the taxes that would be necessary to keep the boomers in the style they're expecting would force the children and grandchildren between dooming their own children to permanent poverty or wholesale tax revolt---whether it's by severe cuts or radical reform to entitlements, sovereign default or hyperinflation, or emigration.

Sorry, Mom and Dad. We can't pay, we shouldn't pay, and no matter how much you scream and shout and curse and swear at your "ungrateful" and "heartless" children and babble about "death panels" and the "seekrit muslin" fiddling you out of "your" Medicare, we won't pay. And you can't make us pay.

All we have to do is outlive you---and figure out whatever your parents did wrong, so our own children don't have to turn out like you.

/Fark you, mom and dad.
//No really. Fark you.
2013-03-11 11:38:08 AM
2 votes:

BMulligan: Pick: The government "borrowed" money from that fund and never payed it back.

BarrRepublican: It is quite annoying to be told that I have to "work harder" because the generation before mine couldn't be bothered to pay back all those loans they took out of FICA.

Social Security funds held in trust are invested in government securities, as required by law. In that sense, I suppose, the general fund "borrows" that money. But if this state of affairs outrages you, what would you propose be done with those funds instead? Bury them in the world's largest coffee can under the White House lawn? Invest it all in pets.com? What? What other investment caries so little risk?


The issue of the government borrowing money is that the worst of the theft came under Reagan. He cut tax rates and increased federal spending and then to cover up part of the massive deficits he was running he looted SS.
The generation that voted for him, twice and hated on Carter for being a pragmatist and a real downer (aka the boomers) should be the ones to have to dig into their pockets to right the ship again.
2013-03-11 11:36:31 AM
2 votes:

GoldSpider: I'm sure I can make allowances for "shiat happens" stuff like medical emergencies (hence why I support single-payer). But if you're asking me to bet against the idea that your average American is stupid and impulsive with money, I'm afraid I can't take that bet.


F*ck you so very much. I'm married, 35, and a U.S. Navy Veteran not receiving assistance; my wife and I both work, I attend a vocational college part time and we make 180% of the poverty line. Know how much that was, last year? $47000. Combined. You rich-fellators make me sick. Physically, disgustingly, ill.
2013-03-11 11:30:35 AM
2 votes:

Girion47: When SS was formed, it was meant to provide about 3 years of support, the average lifespan was 68 back then, it's gone up by 6 years since and the retirement age hasn't been adjusted.  Want to fix SS?  Raise the retirement age.


This isn't true of the people who actually NEED Social Security. People who work with their hands don't live any longer than they ever did; the average life span has gone up because most jobs involve less danger and physical trauma than they did back in the day. So your comfy fat cat who uses his SS check as vacation money lives longer, but your working stiff who would be sleeping in a cardboard box without it doesn't. That dude doesn't need to wait until he's 70 to retire; he'll be dead by then.

Corporations and wealthy individuals are sitting on unprecedented amounts of cash right now, which is why unemployment is going down so slowly. Tax their asses and spend it, and 90 percent of the country's fiscal problems go away.
2013-03-11 11:29:43 AM
2 votes:

Dr Dreidel: Kind of weird that the same motivation is behind both the attacks on pensions and SS - you'd think somewhere in there would be "the motivation to not see mass poverty among the 60+ set", but that's...not profitable enough?

They push you into 401(k)s, which they'll tell you are under attack from Democrats (yeah, 'cause any day the Dems'll pass that horror - right after making your 9mm illegal, giving UN the power to unilaterally amend our Constitution, and making it a GTMO-level felony to attach two sticks perpendicularly), but are actually under attack from the very pedestrian "fee'd to death" banker set.

But still, "save your money, people - between the crushing taxes, stagnating wages, and hyper-inflation, you're bound to need it".


But that's the point - 60+ people simply aren't productive anymore. They just kind of exist, taking up space and resources. Never mind the fact that's what most of us want to be doing at 60+, so the best way to make that happen is to treat the current generation the way we want to be treated.

This also demonstrated the hatred for the young - privatization of schools, huge student loan debt, increasing college costs - they simply aren't productive NOW so there is no point on spending money on them, and burdening them with large amounts of debt is the sure way to make sure they stay productive and are willing to take ANY job for cheaper pay.
2013-03-11 11:18:15 AM
2 votes:

GoldSpider: dready zim: Maybe you should listen to the advice of someone who seems to have better reasoning than yourself right now.

"Bemoaning the plight of millionaires under the yoke of historically low tax rates, and appealing to 19th century morality makes for a losing campaign strategy "

because that is what you are doing

Yes, the rich (and the policies that support them) are to blame for enough of our fiscal/economic problems.  People's willingness to adjust to their own financial circumstances is not one of them.


it isn't easy to adjust your circumstances when you have very little maneuver room.  Without a cash buffer small mistakes can completely sink someone who is poor, whereas the rich person doesn't have to worry about making rent, paying to register the car, paying for car insurance, having health insurance without deductibles to cover that unexpected broken limb, having enough vacation time to recover from that broken limb or childcare situation that called them away from work.
2013-03-11 11:15:56 AM
2 votes:

GoldSpider: Yes, the rich (and the policies that support them) are to blame for enough of our fiscal/economic problems. People's willingness to adjust to their own financial circumstances is not one of them.


You're right. Poor people should just buy more money.

Here's an actual quote:

www.mediaite.com
"Don't you love this country? What a home this is, what grounds these are, the pool, the golf course... a Democrat would say no one should live like this...Republicans come here and say everyone should live like this."


See, so many people actually believe that the pie is unlimited in size, and EVERYONE could have a resort home like John Shnatter's. (CEO of Papa John's whose home Romney was at when he made those remarks). But it's physically impossible. There is simply not enough land out there for every single person to have a huge estate like that. And who would work there? Who would mow the yard and clean the house?

Some people really do believe that if people just worked harder then EVERYONE could live as well as they wanted to.
2013-03-11 10:58:11 AM
2 votes:

Delay: That's not the issue. Social Security is fully solvent for the future as benefits are paid from the SS Trust Fund. Goldberg is discussing that set of accounts owned by the Trusts of which Social Security participants are the beneficiaries. Republicans do not want to settle those accounts by increasing taxes.


And as a gen xer I say to heck with that.   You mean I am going to have to pay the same high rate into SS as the Boomers did for only a small part of their careers but I have to pay higher taxes so that they can recieve their benefits to 100% while even after all this I get 70% of the promisory.... NO.
2013-03-11 10:30:55 AM
2 votes:

Fissile: Um, the "Greatest Generation" have mostly gone off to their reward.  The youngest are now in their mid 80s, my neighbor joined up when he completed high school in 1945, he's 85 years old.

It's the boomer gen that has destroyed us.  The most self-absorbed, narcissistic, egotistical bunch of hypocrites ever.


I thought it was the cabal of rich old white guys who served during Reagan I and II, Bush1 I, and Bush2 II that spent trillions we didn't have that ruined us. The last bunch of thieves wouldn't even put trillions of their spending on the budget so as not to arouse dissent before the three major meltdowns in the last year of their administration.
2013-03-11 10:28:34 AM
2 votes:

Kurmudgeon: The Why Not Guy: Jonah Goldberg is beneath contempt.

THIS! Thanks for saying what I probably could not without cursing.
Thank You, Greatest Generation, we know who you are...


Can we hang the Goldberg?

The problem is the over rich. That is not sustainable.

The chump change the middle class saved up in SS and Medicare is just a distraction postulated by the sycophants sucking rich dick.
There is a certain charm to convincing peeps that their own money is "an Entitlement".
Just charming as all Hell.
2013-03-11 10:09:05 AM
2 votes:

Lord_Baull: Wow, news from 1992 has reached the republican party.

Hey, here's some more tidbits you'd probably like to know:

1) nobody cares if you're gay and you want to get married
2) mexicans aren't the only people here illegally
3) Dick Cheney shot a man in the face. The guy apologized for being in Dick Cheney's gun's line of sight.
4) Trickle Down economics doesn't work.


"Trickle down" did exactly what it was supposed to do.
2013-03-11 10:00:25 AM
2 votes:

rtaylor92: Right but the greediest generation you are referring to are the boomers, not their parents (which is who Goldberg is railing against)


They couldn't have turned into the greedy, entitled bastards they did without their parents contributing a lot.
2013-03-11 09:53:14 AM
2 votes:

ox45tallboy: Jonah Goldberg mixes the wordsmithing of Bill O'Reilly with the smarminess of Bill Maher, which wouldn't be so bad except he's really on the intellectual level of Victoria Jackson.


That's pretty much the most apt description of Goldberg I've seen... Well done.
2013-03-11 08:37:49 AM
2 votes:
Those unfamiliar with Johan Goldberg can read more here
2013-03-12 07:12:36 AM
1 votes:

Pangea: Wendy's Chili: I don't think you're a Republican. You strike me as one of those liberals who supports dumb stuff like a civil draft for high school grads or mandatory community service for welfare recipients without realizing how horribly regressive those ideas are.

I support offering enough financial incentives to avoid needing a draft, but I've always been ok with expecting welfare recipients to have a *job* in exchange for their benefits. It might be something as simple as stuffing empty ballots into envelopes for submission to absentee voters, but something on the level of their capacity.

In fact, I still don't see that as a bad idea, but I'll be open-minded enough to attempt some simple web searches in order to reconcile that with your statement. Any urls to elaborate on your point would also be welcome.


If a job needs doing, it should pay a livable wage. $150 a month is not a livable wage.
2013-03-12 01:39:09 AM
1 votes:

Saiga410: Delay: That's not the issue. Social Security is fully solvent for the future as benefits are paid from the SS Trust Fund. Goldberg is discussing that set of accounts owned by the Trusts of which Social Security participants are the beneficiaries. Republicans do not want to settle those accounts by increasing taxes.

And as a gen xer I say to heck with that.   You mean I am going to have to pay the same high rate into SS as the Boomers did for only a small part of their careers but I have to pay higher taxes so that they can recieve their benefits to 100% while even after all this I get 70% of the promisory.... NO.


Try being a youngin'. I get your tax rates for the next 40 years of my life AND the reduced payout AND the reduced prospect of full time employment.

I won't be sad when the Boomers are dead.
2013-03-11 05:49:27 PM
1 votes:

dready zim: The wages for that company DO increase, they are called profit. Often this is not matched by an increase in wages for the staff. Why should more profit be made yet your wages not increase?

That`s not fair. Are you saying it is?

/on a seperate note, lots of money in a few hands is bad for the economy, which thrives when many hands all have money to spend.


It is absolutely fair.  People should be paid equivalent to what their labor is worth on the open market.  If that isn't enough to live at a level society deems adequate, we need to make up the shortfall by redistributing wealth.
2013-03-11 05:44:28 PM
1 votes:

Stibium: Diogenes: GAT_00: 2wolves: Doughy Pantsload hasn't said anything this dumb in days. Good to see he's still being paid to dare to be stupid.

This isn't all that stupid.  How often have we seen members of the Greediest Generation screaming about how we need to stop socialism but don't you dare touch their Social Security or Medicare?  What better proof of that is there than Paul Ryan trying to "reform" Medicare by utterly destroying it for people under 55, but keeping it for the old because he didn't want to dare offend them.  We had to see Medicare totally destroyed, but they got to keep the existing system without changes.

And I still haven't mentioned how the Greediest Generation could have fixed Social Security for decades, but never did because it would have meant a very slight increase in their own taxes.  Now my generation will have to see a huge tax increase in the future to keep paying for them.

Oh, come on.  No one could have seen or anticipated this.  The population boom just snuck up on them.  They're very quiet.

More truthfully, the population boom <b>did</b> come, but <b>didn't</b> sustain itself. SS was based on a bunch of assumptions which seemed reasonable at the time, but history doesn't bear them out. Things like a consistently growing population, growing taxable income and the like. No one thought we would have a population boom, then decline of birth rates, coupled with complete stagnation of taxable incomes for decades on end with no relief in sight. The only politically feasible way to fix it is to raise the taxable income cap or reduce payments. It would be foolhardy of the highest magnitude to spur population increases (as well as being a really long term solution, i.e. unpalatable), and getting the tax base roaring just isn't going to happen.

The people who are just now getting to benefit from the program are the ones who strangled it to death and should really feel the pain from their monumentally stupid decision ...


Hopefully things get fixed right after the Boomers die off.  fark them, they've been a voting bloc since the 70's and you've seen where that's gotten us.
2013-03-11 05:40:08 PM
1 votes:

Diogenes: GAT_00: 2wolves: Doughy Pantsload hasn't said anything this dumb in days. Good to see he's still being paid to dare to be stupid.

This isn't all that stupid.  How often have we seen members of the Greediest Generation screaming about how we need to stop socialism but don't you dare touch their Social Security or Medicare?  What better proof of that is there than Paul Ryan trying to "reform" Medicare by utterly destroying it for people under 55, but keeping it for the old because he didn't want to dare offend them.  We had to see Medicare totally destroyed, but they got to keep the existing system without changes.

And I still haven't mentioned how the Greediest Generation could have fixed Social Security for decades, but never did because it would have meant a very slight increase in their own taxes.  Now my generation will have to see a huge tax increase in the future to keep paying for them.

Oh, come on.  No one could have seen or anticipated this.  The population boom just snuck up on them.  They're very quiet.


More truthfully, the population boom <b>did</b> come, but <b>didn't</b> sustain itself. SS was based on a bunch of assumptions which seemed reasonable at the time, but history doesn't bear them out. Things like a consistently growing population, growing taxable income and the like. No one thought we would have a population boom, then decline of birth rates, coupled with complete stagnation of taxable incomes for decades on end with no relief in sight. The only politically feasible way to fix it is to raise the taxable income cap or reduce payments. It would be foolhardy of the highest magnitude to spur population increases (as well as being a really long term solution, i.e. unpalatable), and getting the tax base roaring just isn't going to happen.

The people who are just now getting to benefit from the program are the ones who strangled it to death and should really feel the pain from their monumentally stupid decisions. Who knew that relying on abject greed as your retirement vehicle would completely fall apart when someone even more ruthless would crash the system for their own benefit, even when it happened plenty of times before? It's not like history books were invented in the last 20 years.

Honestly I have no idea on how to fix it in a way that's possible. It's just not going to happen.
2013-03-11 03:33:41 PM
1 votes:
I support not making kids just born today have to pay for the debt the Boomers have run up.
2013-03-11 03:06:38 PM
1 votes:

PsiChick: numb3r5ev3n: What?

Tigger: <I>The Depression--the  Great Depression--was the  result of WWII. It came after, </i>

jigga what?

...And, after Googling, my history textbooks are their usual fail. Well. Nm, then.

(insert pie pic here)


That's not 'a small oversight', that's massively screwing up the first half of the 20th Century. What farking history text book do you have that says the Depression came after WWII??????
2013-03-11 02:44:05 PM
1 votes:
Anyone who calls Social Security a "Ponzi scheme" either doesn't understand how it works or is deliberately lying about it in service of some agenda (usually keeping taxes on the rich unsustainably low).
2013-03-11 01:50:41 PM
1 votes:

GoldSpider: It's rich people's fault that the average household credit card debt is in the neighborhood of $6,000?


Well, if those "job creators" would pay a living wage, or even just keep track with inflation some folks wouldn't have to go into debt when they get sick or lose their jobs or have an accident or need reconstructive dental work*...

My wages have been frozen for five years, now.  Do you suppose my cost of living has, as well?

*like me.
2013-03-11 01:39:00 PM
1 votes:

kgf: OMG a whole generation of whiney Emo's.Most of you have no idea of what you're talking about.Neither do I, but I'll throw my two cents in anyway.


Having been born in 1962, I am lumped in with the baby boomers (which is ridiculous because I have NOTHING in common with people born in 1950).I grew up in the '70's which probably means to you disco, funny clothes and lots of drugs.But what you don't know is the entire decade (as I remember it) was one long recession that rivaled the one we're just coming out of.What ended it was Ronald farking Reagan.He did it by spending huge amounts of money on weapons we didn't need or want, all because he hated communists.So by investing money he didn't have in defense, he put us all to work and destroyed the Soviet Union, but he did that by mortgaging YOUR future.


So you now sit there biatching about how bad your lives are because your grandparents are "greedy", not understanding that they've been paying into these funds for 60 or 70 years,and are just getting back what they've been promised, plus, you're sitting in your dorm room or your parent's air conditioned basement watching SpongeBob on a 60" HD LCD while you wait for your PS3 tofinish its latest update so you start another 14 hour Call of Duty session.The generation you complain about could only dream about the standard of living you enjoy which they handed to you on a silver platter.


As per my comment above, Reagan and Bush 1 and Bush 2 spent a lot of money they didn't have. The very troubling thing is the young generation in this country won't be able to pay off the national debt because of

1. depressed wages
2. personal debt

Welcome to Third World America. Now with fewer middle class
2013-03-11 01:37:44 PM
1 votes:
If it weren't for the "greatest generation", you'd be writing from a German work camp, you ninny. There's nothing wrong with our social programs. They're not even that expensive if we can avoid having a trillion dollar war with 19th century barbarians every few years, and our CEOs can stop thinking they deserve 300 times the average worker's salary.

They grew up without or with little electricity, antibiotics, running water, and television. They built all that, and the nice interstate highway you drive to vacation on. They did all that, and beat Hitler and Stalin and polio and smallpox and tripled world food production just so you could sit in your air conditioned office in an ergonomic leather chair, sipping your mochachino skinny latte typing on your wireless keyboard about things you haven't really thought about.
So yeah, grandma and grandpa deserve to retire with a little goddamn dignity and some farking respect you whiny little brat.

/only 42
//stay off my lawn
kgf
2013-03-11 01:35:27 PM
1 votes:
OMG a whole generation of whiney Emo's.Most of you have no idea of what you're talking about.Neither do I, but I'll throw my two cents in anyway.


Having been born in 1962, I am lumped in with the baby boomers (which is ridiculous because I have NOTHING in common with people born in 1950).I grew up in the '70's which probably means to you disco, funny clothes and lots of drugs.But what you don't know is the entire decade (as I remember it) was one long recession that rivaled the one we're just coming out of.What ended it was Ronald farking Reagan.He did it by spending huge amounts of money on weapons we didn't need or want, all because he hated communists.So by investing money he didn't have in defense, he put us all to work and destroyed the Soviet Union, but he did that by mortgaging YOUR future.


So you now sit there biatching about how bad your lives are because your grandparents are "greedy", not understanding that they've been paying into these funds for 60 or 70 years,and are just getting back what they've been promised, plus, you're sitting in your dorm room or your parent's air conditioned basement watching SpongeBob on a 60" HD LCD while you wait for your PS3 tofinish its latest update so you start another 14 hour Call of Duty session.The generation you complain about could only dream about the standard of living you enjoy which they handed to you on a silver platter.
2013-03-11 01:02:48 PM
1 votes:

Molavian: What makes me sick is how little buying power the $250k a year my wife and I make together has.


And now think of the people that have half, or a quarter, or one-fifth the purchasing power you do.

// one-fifth of your combined earnings is median US wage
// on fifth base complaining about those who legged out an infield single
2013-03-11 12:59:56 PM
1 votes:
What makes me sick is how little buying power the $250k a year my wife and I make together has.
2013-03-11 12:28:33 PM
1 votes:
I still think it absurd that everyone born between  1946 and 1964 is a "baby boomer."  Someone who attained age 18 in 1978 had a drastically different childhood/has a drastically different mindset than someone who turned 18 in 1960.


/Young for a baby boomer
/Will probably not get much juicy entitlement goodness in 20 years
2013-03-11 12:28:12 PM
1 votes:

Girion47: SacriliciousBeerSwiller: We as a society need to stop being such massive pricks to two groups: people with kids, and the elderly. The latter, because "respecting your elders" is a time tested tradition. We'll all be there some day. And the former because those kids will be the ones taking care of your own wrinkly arse in a few years. It's all about karma.

Once the people with kids quit trying to shame me into joining their misery I'll quit being a dick to them.


As a person with a 14 month old, I don't recommend anyone have a kid that isn't prepared for a massive life change. And I begrudge no one for not chose the path of parenting. So... we don't all do it.
2013-03-11 12:12:11 PM
1 votes:
We as a society need to stop being such massive pricks to two groups: people with kids, and the elderly. The latter, because "respecting your elders" is a time tested tradition. We'll all be there some day. And the former because those kids will be the ones taking care of your own wrinkly arse in a few years. It's all about karma.
2013-03-11 12:09:29 PM
1 votes:

ox45tallboy: GoldSpider: ox45tallboy: Whether you believe in luck or not, the fact is that the pie is only so big. The more you take for yourself, no matter how much you feel you deserve it, the less there is for everyone else.

Under the right economic conditions, the pie keeps getting bigger.  The problem is that it's not growing very quickly, and the rich are getting a bigger and bigger slice.

No. The US is not going to get any bigger anymore. There simply is not enough land for everyone, or even just the people that want it, to have an estate the size of John Shnatter's.


=================

We all can't have an estate like John Shnatter's because dozens of people ware needed to clean and maintain such an estate.   Without a socio-political-economic system that supplies large numbers of "menials" no such estates can exist.
2013-03-11 12:07:20 PM
1 votes:

ox45tallboy: GoldSpider: Yes, the rich (and the policies that support them) are to blame for enough of our fiscal/economic problems. People's willingness to adjust to their own financial circumstances is not one of them.

You're right. Poor people should just buy more money.

Here's an actual quote:

[www.mediaite.com image 396x259]
"Don't you love this country? What a home this is, what grounds these are, the pool, the golf course... a Democrat would say no one should live like this...Republicans come here and say everyone should live like this."

See, so many people actually believe that the pie is unlimited in size, and EVERYONE could have a resort home like John Shnatter's. (CEO of Papa John's whose home Romney was at when he made those remarks). But it's physically impossible. There is simply not enough land out there for every single person to have a huge estate like that. And who would work there? Who would mow the yard and clean the house?

Some people really do believe that if people just worked harder then EVERYONE could live as well as they wanted to.


And the funny thing is they make fun of the strawman "liberals" that give gold stars to all children for trying, participation awards and all that sort of thing despite claiming that is how the real world could work if only everyone would just try harder.
2013-03-11 12:05:43 PM
1 votes:
Lots of mommy issues in this thread.
2013-03-11 12:01:18 PM
1 votes:

Girion47: When SS was formed, it was meant to provide about 3 years of support, the average lifespan was 68 back then, it's gone up by 6 years since and the retirement age hasn't been adjusted.  Want to fix SS?  Raise the retirement age.


WRONG

Life span is about the same as it always was.  There were centenarians in past centuries.  Incredibly rare, but they were there.

Life EXPECTANCY is what has changed in the 20th Century.  We're doing a great job now of getting people TO old age.  Your 68 number includes all the babies that died of smallpox and other communicable diseases and all the middle age heart attacks and untreated cancers and every other type of death amongst the not old that has been reduced by leaps and bounds over the past 100 years.

We are not doing much at the present to the life span, and we are also doing very little to address the physical and mental degradations of old age that in total effect large chunks of the elderly population like dementia and Alzheimer and Parkinsons and arthritis and knees and hips that need replacing etc.

At the moment, raising the age much beyond where it is now is only going to shift this large population of unable to work old people from old age SS to disability SS and will be unfair to those who are unusually healthy or work an unusually low stress job.

/This post subject to change if something like this http://www.fark.com/comments/7635887/Scientists-think-that-within-fiv e -years-drugs-will-enable-a-human-to-live-to-150-years-old-So-much-for- early-retirement comes to fruition
2013-03-11 11:51:48 AM
1 votes:

GAT_00: This isn't all that stupid.  How often have we seen members of the Greediest Generation screaming about how we need to stop socialism but don't you dare touch their Social Security or Medicare?  What better proof of that is there than Paul Ryan trying to "reform" Medicare by utterly destroying it for people under 55, but keeping it for the old because he didn't want to dare offend them.  We had to see Medicare totally destroyed, but they got to keep the existing system without changes.


...not to put a too fine point on it, but most of the "git yer gubmint hands off my Medicare" yellers are Boomers.  Most of the GG is either dead or could not give two shiats about what the ebil gubmint does, as long as they get their checks on time.
2013-03-11 11:51:48 AM
1 votes:
dready zim:

It`s not a dem/rep thing it`s a rich assholes and you thing.

^          ^          ^          ^          ^

Let's repeat this again.

It`s not a dem/rep thing it`s a rich assholes and you thing.
2013-03-11 11:34:40 AM
1 votes:

GoldSpider: That was among plenty of reasons why I didn't vote for the asshat.


It's not just that asshat. Many people look at what they have, and realize they could have worked harder but they chose to raise a family, or didn't want the responsibility of their own business. They cannot acknowledge any amount of luck in getting a good job or finding the right house at the right time or meeting the right person. All they have, they deserve, so therefore the people that have more than them must have worked harder for it, so therefore they deserve everything they have, too. The people that have less than them must be good-for-nothing moochers who want handouts and should just pull themselves up by their bootstraps.

Whether you believe in luck or not, the fact is that the pie is only so big. The more you take for yourself, no matter how much you feel you deserve it, the less there is for everyone else.
2013-03-11 11:24:49 AM
1 votes:

The Why Not Guy: I don't mean to belittle or demean the heroic efforts and sacrifices of those who served in World War II. But the idea that a whole generation deserves credit for what only some did is little more than an attempt to buy glory on the cheap.

During World War II, approximately 16,000,000 Americans served in the military. There were over 300,000 Americans killed. Those at home worked in factories converted to wartime production, or went without necessities because supplies were routed to troops. The entire nation came together and worked to defeat an enemy.

Meanwhile, today people slap a yellow magnet on their bumper and think they're "supporting the troops".

Jonah Goldberg is beneath contempt.


Those were the old days when we actually declared war, the government raised taxes to pay for it, resources were rationed and there was a draft. You couldn't avoid being affected by the war even if you tried. We were also coming out of the depression so people were happy to have any kind of work, even if it meant enlisting.

Fast-forward 60 years..undeclared wars, government cuts taxes, no draft, no rationing, and the economy was doing just fine. You could get on with your life and never know that there were wars being fought.
2013-03-11 11:24:40 AM
1 votes:
Workplace productivity has increased about 23% since 2000 but wages have only increased 0.4%
And
If you worked for the lowest wages in 2011, you earned less than the workers in the same percentile in 1979
And
People who became unemployed between 2007 and 2009 but found new, full-time jobs took an average wage cut of 10.5 percent

/i47.tinypic.com
//Just sayin
2013-03-11 11:22:10 AM
1 votes:
The sooner the damn boomers die off the better. Bunch of leeches.
2013-03-11 11:11:33 AM
1 votes:

rtaylor92: So now we've got personal savings/IRA's/401k's doing the work of two-parts of the "tri-pod."


According to the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, the median household retirement account balance in 2010 for workers between the ages of 55-64 was just $120,000. For people expecting to retire at around age 65, and to live for another 15 years or more, this will provide for only a trivial supplement to Social Security benefits.

And that's for people who actually have a retirement account of some kind. A third of households do not. For these people, their sole retirement income, aside from potential aid from friends and family, comes from Social Security, for which the current average monthly benefit is $1,230.

401Ks are a disaster
2013-03-11 11:10:46 AM
1 votes:
All this can be fixed if we tax Baby Boomers at 90%.
2013-03-11 11:10:19 AM
1 votes:

Saiga410: And as a gen xer I say to heck with that. You mean I am going to have to pay the same high rate into SS as the Boomers did for only a small part of their careers but I have to pay higher taxes so that they can recieve their benefits to 100% while even after all this I get 70% of the promisory.... NO.


I don't know why people keep saying this. It's false. Since the Greenspan Commission and the Social Security Reform act of 1983 took effect the rates were set higher to pay for the expected increased retirees. That's almost thirty years, hardly a small part of the retirees' careers.

Besides, your benefits stay at 100% even after the rates scale back, as long as the outdated salary cap is removed.
2013-03-11 11:08:57 AM
1 votes:

Girion47: When SS was formed, it was meant to provide about 3 years of support, the average lifespan was 68 back then, it's gone up by 6 years since and the retirement age hasn't been adjusted.  Want to fix SS?  Raise the retirement age.


it was also meant to be part of a "tri-pod" with planned retirement benefits and personal savings making up the rest. Then about 20 years ago companies figured out they could improve their bottom line by getting rid of retirement benefits. So now we've got personal savings/IRA's/401k's doing the work of two-parts of the "tri-pod."

Besides that, you could fix in the insolvency by removing the income cap (as I'm sure other people have mentioned).
2013-03-11 11:07:51 AM
1 votes:

bizzwire: Except that social security payments weren't mean to provide retirement income. They were meant to be 'supplemental' income.


That's true. Back then, people had retirement plans no matter where they worked. You could also say that Medicaid wasn't meant to be a health insurance policy for those who could work and were working, but get a job at Wal-Mart today and you'll find the applications in the HR office.
2013-03-11 11:06:56 AM
1 votes:

Saiga410: And as a gen xer I say to heck with that. You mean I am going to have to pay the same high rate into SS as the Boomers did for only a small part of their careers but I have to pay higher taxes so that they can recieve their benefits to 100% while even after all this I get 70% of the promisory.... NO.


Exactly - it's bullshiat.  Boomers paid money into the system.  The system loaned that money to the government.  The government spent that money into the economy, which has created a massive boom over the past thirty years, which the boomers were the primary beneficiaries of.  Now they're retiring, and they are expecting the next generation - saddled with a shiatty economy to start with - to pay for their retirement.
2013-03-11 11:06:04 AM
1 votes:
Fark you.  I got mine.
2013-03-11 10:57:30 AM
1 votes:

Saiga410: GoldSpider: Lord_Baull: The answer to your question lies in the question:
Who benefits from average household credit debt?

That has little to do with whether or not people are spending money they don't have.

dready zim: If you think that then your understanding of the graph is dillusional.

What does an income/productivity graph tell us about people's spending habits?

(hint: nothing whatsoever)

I do not understand peoples drooling level of outrage over the productivity to income gap.  Why yes me opperating an excavator does the work of 30+ guys with shovels... but that does not entitle me to 30X minimum wage earnings.  Or a codemonkey replacing/obsoleting the majority of an accounting staff.


I posted it to show more how average wages have stayed relatively flat while top wages have sky-rocketed.   There's a disparity that needs to be addressed.
2013-03-11 10:57:21 AM
1 votes:

poot_rootbeer: Girion47: Even require me to withhold 12% of my paycheck(and require the company to give that other 6%) and put it in a retirement fund that I can direct.

Do you think your investments will grow enough in value that you'll be able to retire on them?

Do you think everybody's will?

If you answered yes to the first question and no to the second, then how does your proposal make sense as the 'safety net' that Social Security was designed to provide?


Except that social security payments weren't mean to provide retirement income. They were meant to be 'supplemental' income.
2013-03-11 10:56:17 AM
1 votes:

Saiga410: GoldSpider: Lord_Baull: The answer to your question lies in the question:
Who benefits from average household credit debt?

That has little to do with whether or not people are spending money they don't have.

dready zim: If you think that then your understanding of the graph is dillusional.

What does an income/productivity graph tell us about people's spending habits?

(hint: nothing whatsoever)

I do not understand peoples drooling level of outrage over the productivity to income gap.  Why yes me opperating an excavator does the work of 30+ guys with shovels... but that does not entitle me to 30X minimum wage earnings.  Or a codemonkey replacing/obsoleting the majority of an accounting staff.


Or the CEO laying off 10,000 Americans?
2013-03-11 10:51:35 AM
1 votes:

GoldSpider: Lord_Baull: The answer to your question lies in the question:
Who benefits from average household credit debt?

That has little to do with whether or not people are spending money they don't have.


And yet it has a great deal to do with why they don`t have the money in the first place to spend or not, a major reason for needing credit.

GoldSpider: dready zim: If you think that then your understanding of the graph is dillusional.

What does an income/productivity graph tell us about people's spending habits?

(hint: nothing whatsoever)


Just like the spending habits of the average person is nothing to do with whether the people at the top are taking all the wealth. That`s the meaning of the graph. That`s the joke.jpg
2013-03-11 10:42:23 AM
1 votes:

GoldSpider: Girion47: yes

[images2.dailykos.com image 550x290]

I don't think that graph says what you think it says.


If you think that then your understanding of the graph is dillusional.
2013-03-11 10:39:17 AM
1 votes:

And one more thing.  How did today's GOP become the party of saying that these guys:

media.npr.org


Are leeches on society, not to mention these folks -- EMT, firefighters, police, teachers:
www.totalmortgage.comwww.slate.com

WTF???
2013-03-11 10:38:36 AM
1 votes:

Pick: Why do you blame people for wanting what was PROMISED them?


Because in some part the person being promised something needs to evaluate whether the person promising can come up with it.

I started my first part-time job in high school in 1987.  When I got my first check my boss pointed out the deductions and made sure to let me know that the odds were I wouldn't ever see much of them coming back to me.

The gov't promised me they could take care of me, but sorry if I don't cry about it now that it's becoming apparent that the odds are they won't be able to with the manner in which the system is set up.  I've already accepted that the system was going to crash and burn before I get to cash in on it.  That's life.  What are my alternatives?  Pulling the plug on the Greatest Generation?  Advocating for a free market that has proven they're more prone to ripping people off than doing legitimate business?

"Life sucks.  Wear a helmet." - Denis Leary
2013-03-11 10:36:25 AM
1 votes:

GoldSpider: It's rich people's fault that the average household credit card debt is in the neighborhood of $6,000?



The answer to your question lies in the question:
Who benefits from average household credit debt?
2013-03-11 10:31:23 AM
1 votes:

BMulligan: Pick: The government "borrowed" money from that fund and never payed it back.

BarrRepublican: It is quite annoying to be told that I have to "work harder" because the generation before mine couldn't be bothered to pay back all those loans they took out of FICA.

Social Security funds held in trust are invested in government securities, as required by law. In that sense, I suppose, the general fund "borrows" that money. But if this state of affairs outrages you, what would you propose be done with those funds instead? Bury them in the world's largest coffee can under the White House lawn? Invest it all in pets.com? What? What other investment caries so little risk?


You have to hand it to Wall Street/hedge fund managers to have this sort of idea have any traction at all - the idea that government programs with surpluses should lend out the money to private enterprise (for a fee), and then other government programs with deficits should borrow more money from private enterprise (for a fee), and then of course all that lending out will need to be insured in case the bank or whatever goes bust (for a fee). I wonder who benefits from all this? I can guarantee it won't be the beneficiaries of the programs or the tax payers.
2013-03-11 10:28:16 AM
1 votes:
Um, the "Greatest Generation" have mostly gone off to their reward.  The youngest are now in their mid 80s, my neighbor joined up when he completed high school in 1945, he's 85 years old.

It's the boomer gen that has destroyed us.  The most self-absorbed, narcissistic, egotistical bunch of hypocrites ever.
2013-03-11 10:27:07 AM
1 votes:
Most of the people that are working day and night to strip the Baby Boomers of their earned and paid for "entitlements" are other Baby Boomers.

newsjunkiepost.com

Like this asshole.
2013-03-11 10:25:01 AM
1 votes:

Girion47: Sudlow: People of the "Greatest Generation" received back in benefits everything they ever contributed to Social Security within a couple of years. Us Boomers will take longer, but we'll get more back than we put in. You kids are F'd. It takes a while, but all Ponzi Schemes eventually fall apart.

Which is why I'd like to see it ended immediately.   Hell take the money I've paid in...whatever.  Even require me to withhold 12% of my paycheck(and require the company to give that other 6%) and put it in a retirement fund that I can direct.   Just farking end social security.


I don't intend to sound like some sort of elitist, but do you really think it's a good idea to let the vast majority of Americans manage their retirement accounts?  You will have hordes of Wall Street sharks and small-time scammers swarming to get gullible investors to hand over that sweet sweet pile o' money.

Maybe you could allow universal access to something like the Thrift Savings Plan, which has a menu of extremely low-cost index funds, but I could see legislators screwing that up as well.  "It is a travesty that honest, hard-working Americans do not have the option to invest in gold coins in their retirement accounts. For thousands of years, gold has served as a stable store of value. Gold IS money!  And that is why, my friends, I am introducing this bill to allow the good people at GoldLine.com to be included in the list of investment options for the Mandatory Retirement Savings program.  The fact that I am on the board of directors of the company is not a confilct of interest; it is merely proof that I believe in the power of gold."
2013-03-11 10:17:44 AM
1 votes:

Girion47: When SS was formed, it was meant to provide about 3 years of support, the average lifespan was 68 back then, it's gone up by 6 years since and the retirement age hasn't been adjusted.  Want to fix SS?  Raise the retirement age.


This has already been done twice in my lifetime. That alone will not work. The problem is that when SS was started, there were five people working for every retiree. That's now down to three and will soon be down to two. It isn't just that boomers, the nation's largest generation, are reaching retirement age. The SS Trust Fund has been planning for this for several decades now; contrary to what the right-winger would have us believe, the SS Trustees have not had their heads buried in the sand, pretending there is no problem. One of the biggest problems that the program faces is that the government continues to rob the trust fund (via bogus bond issues) to supplement the general fund. Another growing problem is that as more and more jobs are sent offshore, fewer workers are left to pay the taxes.

The Republicans want to do away with SS and allow that wonderful, trust-worthy, all-knowing free market be the source of retirement income. The free market will take care of us just as they did when they made it so that so many of us could become homeowners.
2013-03-11 10:17:09 AM
1 votes:

Parthenogenetic: Pick: Why do you blame people for wanting what was PROMISED them?

I left my previous job, because my current employer made me an offer that included benefits. I accepted the job, because of what was offered.

Our current government made us all sign a contract to pay into Social Security, and gave us all a number. In signing for that card, we signed a contract, that if we payed into that fund, there would be benefits for us, when we retired. The government "borrowed" money from that fund and never payed it back. Now they say it's "broken". It is only broken, because the government broke it themselves when they stole all the money from it.

There is no contractual right to receive Social Security benefits.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flemming_v._Nestor

http://www.ssa.gov/history/nestor.html

Now get back to work, citizen.


...but that doesn't negate the point, does it?

Goldberg is biatching about people wanting to benefit from the system that they supported via payroll taxes for 40+ years.

That has nothing to do with whether Social Security involves "contractual obligations" or not.
2013-03-11 10:16:40 AM
1 votes:
Wait, I read the headline as them turning on the Baby Boomers. Turning on the currently retired as leeches in favor of the generation that benefited from high social spending as children and low taxes as adults who now expect high social spending as retirees? Classy.
2013-03-11 10:16:06 AM
1 votes:
If there's a silver lining to all of this, it's that once the majority of the boomers go senile or die the younger generation will probably make at least a little bit of progress to fix all the shiat that they heaped on us. I'm sure we'll screw up just as bad in the end - but Christ they really screwed the pooch. And the pooch ended up being their children, oddly.
2013-03-11 10:15:12 AM
1 votes:

Ned Stark: Lord_Baull: Wow, news from 1992 has reached the republican party.

Hey, here's some more tidbits you'd probably like to know:

1) nobody cares if you're gay and you want to get married
2) mexicans aren't the only people here illegally
3) Dick Cheney shot a man in the face. The guy apologized for being in Dick Cheney's gun's line of sight.
4) Trickle Down economics doesn't work.

"Trickle down" did exactly what it was supposed to do.



Touche.
4) Trickle Down doesn't work as advertised to the plebes.
2013-03-11 10:14:51 AM
1 votes:
Curse you, selfish 80- and 90-year-olds!
2013-03-11 10:12:42 AM
1 votes:

Sudlow: People of the "Greatest Generation" received back in benefits everything they ever contributed to Social Security within a couple of years. Us Boomers will take longer, but we'll get more back than we put in. You kids are F'd. It takes a while, but all Ponzi Schemes eventually fall apart.


Which is why I'd like to see it ended immediately.   Hell take the money I've paid in...whatever.  Even require me to withhold 12% of my paycheck(and require the company to give that other 6%) and put it in a retirement fund that I can direct.   Just farking end social security.
2013-03-11 10:12:19 AM
1 votes:
How much of the Greatest Generation is still alive? My grandfather died at 88 a few years back - born in 1920, fought in WWII (airplane mechanic).

The Baby Boomers are the ones we're worried about. We're (barely) keeping our heads above water paying for old people now, but once you Roy Rogers-turned hippe-turned disco fever-turned yuppie-turned soccer mom folks start getting that sweet government cheese is when things start to collapse rather than simply rot.

// The Greatest Generation also paid some high taxes without all the biatching the Boomers did/do
2013-03-11 10:09:30 AM
1 votes:

Grungehamster: I will say if they are going to demand that we balance the budget and dramatically cut spending in the next decade, it's good they'll finally admit where the vast majority of the expected growth in government spending is projected to come from.

Seriously, saying "we should be cutting our spending by hundreds of billions each year from current projected spending" while also saying "we will make sure retiring baby boomers and the military are untouched by cuts" translates to "we will eliminate all other government function to preserve the 2/3rds of projected spending those things cost us so as not have to raise taxes."


We want to cut government enough so that the only thing it can do is go into foreign countries and drown their babies in a bathtub.
2013-03-11 10:09:28 AM
1 votes:
People of the "Greatest Generation" received back in benefits everything they ever contributed to Social Security within a couple of years. Us Boomers will take longer, but we'll get more back than we put in. You kids are F'd. It takes a while, but all Ponzi Schemes eventually fall apart.
2013-03-11 10:06:16 AM
1 votes:

The Why Not Guy: I don't mean to belittle or demean the heroic efforts and sacrifices of those who served in World War II. But the idea that a whole generation deserves credit for what only some did is little more than an attempt to buy glory on the cheap.

During World War II, approximately 16,000,000 Americans served in the military. There were over 300,000 Americans killed. Those at home worked in factories converted to wartime production, or went without necessities because supplies were routed to troops. The entire nation came together and worked to defeat an enemy.

Meanwhile, today people slap a yellow magnet on their bumper and think they're "supporting the troops".

Jonah Goldberg is beneath contempt.


You're my new best friend.
2013-03-11 10:06:14 AM
1 votes:

Sybarite: Boomers end around '64. Born in 1969, Goldberg is firmly Generation X.


Jesus, really?  He ages about as badly as Andrew Breitbart did.
2013-03-11 10:04:22 AM
1 votes:
Older generations paid taxes to fund Social Security.  Social Security bought Treasuries with the surplus.  The government spent that money on the military and safety nets.  Now the Trust Fund needs the money they are owed from those bonds.  The only way for the government to get that money is to tax the people currently working.
2013-03-11 10:04:17 AM
1 votes:
Someone needs to send this whiney little revisionist farker back in time to grow up in the period of 1930 to 1960, so he can come back and tell us about all that coddling he got.

Here's a simple solution for those who consider Social Security and Medicare to be government hand-outs: when you reach 65 years of age, simply do not apply for benefits. You are not, after all, required to.
2013-03-11 09:57:23 AM
1 votes:
Ah, yes, "entitlements."

Like being entitled to a career of writing idiotic articles and books because your mom blew the right people.

i48.photobucket.com
2013-03-11 09:56:07 AM
1 votes:

GAT_00: 2wolves: Doughy Pantsload hasn't said anything this dumb in days. Good to see he's still being paid to dare to be stupid.

This isn't all that stupid.  How often have we seen members of the Greediest Generation screaming about how we need to stop socialism but don't you dare touch their Social Security or Medicare?  What better proof of that is there than Paul Ryan trying to "reform" Medicare by utterly destroying it for people under 55, but keeping it for the old because he didn't want to dare offend them.  We had to see Medicare totally destroyed, but they got to keep the existing system without changes.

And I still haven't mentioned how the Greediest Generation could have fixed Social Security for decades, but never did because it would have meant a very slight increase in their own taxes.  Now my generation will have to see a huge tax increase in the future to keep paying for them.


Oh, come on.  No one could have seen or anticipated this.  The population boom just snuck up on them.  They're very quiet.
2013-03-11 09:51:14 AM
1 votes:
Jonah Goldberg is why we have anti-nepotism policies in most workplaces.
2013-03-11 09:15:29 AM
1 votes:

Angry Drunk Bureaucrat: I_Am_Weasel: The GOP is "going to glory" in 2014?

They're going to be Raptured?


They're in a bit of a hole...
2013-03-11 08:29:15 AM
1 votes:
Right. Take them out back and shoot 'em.
 
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