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(Gawker)   Courts rule that the homeless are allowed to own things. GOP seen wringing its hands and gnashing its teeth. Believers in prosperity gospel not too pleased either   (gawker.com) divider line 106
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3815 clicks; posted to Politics » on 25 Jun 2013 at 3:39 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-06-25 02:24:35 PM
i20.photobucket.com
 
2013-06-25 02:35:34 PM
Conservative SCOTUS, indeed.
 
2013-06-25 02:58:23 PM
I am shocked property rights aren't dependent upon class.
 
2013-06-25 03:02:58 PM
They should stop being poor. Geeez... it's pretty simple.
 
2013-06-25 03:06:32 PM
I understand the inclination to celebrate this as a positive step, especially for those with a more "progressive" political bent, but there really is another edge to this particular sword. I won't go too far into macro economic theory or anything, since that would probably just leave most people hopelessly confused, but to boil it down to the most basic element, what you have to consider is the overall notion of "wealth inequality," which more and more people now accept as a possibly growing problem in our society.

Now, let's set aside for a moment the argument about whether or not wealth inequality is actually a problem and start with a question of definition. What is wealth inequality? Put simply, it is the growing gulf between "rich" and "poor" -- the supposedly vast and growing gulf between the two classes of Americans that some leading experts have defined as the "maker class" (ie, upper class/wealthy) and the "taker class" (ie, the poor). This gulf was, once upon a time, occupied by the "middle class," but unfortunately many of them have, since the recession, grown very lazy and are content to simply collect federal benefits like welfare, unemployment, food stamps, and Obamaphones. It's impossible to estimate the total value of these handouts, but let's just say for the sake of argument that they're each making around $80,000 per year.

Now, for some people, that might seem like a reasonable income. For many of the taker class, though, they end up simply squandering it. They buy things like "spinners" for their tires, or jewelry, or kegerators. And since most of them buy these things on credit or from places like RentaCenter, what this actually means is that they not only lose money buying these things, but they continue to lose money paying for them, too. This means, in turn, that they slip further down the "ladder" of economic prosperity. Which means that, also in turn, the government has to give them even *more* money just to keep them from falling off and breaking their necks (which would cost even more in medical bills). On the other hand, the members of the maker class are spending their money wisely, investing in job creation and real estate and hedge funds. They're moving steadily up the ladder. So it is these two separate types of motion -- takers moving down, makers moving up -- that creates wealth inequality.

So. We've established how social classes form. Again, my point here is not to cast any sort of value judgment on the system, but merely to explain how it works. In any case, at this point the upper class has established itself as successful. "Success," mind you, is a relative term -- they are successful in light of the fact that they are above those who are not successful. So, in order to continue to be successful, they must continue to  stay above the lower class. This, though, becomes increasingly difficult, because in order to keep the takers on the ladder, the government must start giving them even *more* money to maintain the "taking" lifestyles to which they've grown accustomed. The only way the government can get this additional money is by taking it from the maker class. This happens through taxes. Higher taxes on the rich means they have less money overall, which actually pulls them *down* the ladder. Good news, right? This brings them closer to the poor people, which means the inequality gap is shrinking.

No! Bad news! See, it doesn't actually work that way. It only *seems* like giving more money to the poor brings them up. But, really, what it does is give them even more money to squander. This, actually, pushes them *further down* the ladder, and their rate of downward descent is exponentially greater than the rate by which the upper classes are descending, because of interest on their credit cards. SO what's happening, really, is that EVERBODY is moving DOWN the ladder ...  but the poor are moving down faster. So the inequality gap is INCREASING, not decreasing, but even so, everybody is losing in the end. How to reverse this? Well, in a perverse, almost ironic way, it is by taking things away from the poor -- ie, removing those items which they must continue to spend money on to maintain -- that can actually arrest their downward trend, stabilize them on whatever rung they occupy, and thus help close the gap.

I think it's great to have an instinct to help the poor. But like so many things, those who are most motivated to help often misunderstand the problem. Everybody should take some time to learn the facts here so that we can all have a true understanding of this very important issue.
 
2013-06-25 03:06:53 PM
I thought LA was a liberal stronghold.

I was told these kinds of shenanigans don't happen in those cities
 
2013-06-25 03:28:23 PM

cman: I thought LA was a liberal stronghold.

I was told these kinds of shenanigans don't happen in those cities


It's important when you build your liberal stronghold to keep the poor people as far away as possible. While the poor are great in theory, if you ever actually meet any of them you'll find they're as despicable as the rich. Not only that, there are a lot more of them.
 
2013-06-25 03:32:18 PM
i20.photobucket.com

Yes they do, and THIS is a far more accurate depiction of what those refrigerators look like.

www.chelanpud.org

newsimg.bbc.co.uk
 
2013-06-25 03:36:34 PM
Why won't they just die?
 
2013-06-25 03:46:56 PM

rumpelstiltskin: While the poor are great in theory, if you ever actually meet any of them you'll find they're as despicable as the rich.


You jest, but some people really are poor for perfectly valid and self-inflicted reasons. And for the most part those people are, in fact, quite despicable.

As a libby liberal liberalist I'm all for flattening the class structure some by ensuring that the rules are fair for everyone (because apparently thinking that becoming rich by nearly any means shouldn't entitle you to special rules meant to keep you rich no matter what else you do is what cuts it as "liberal" in this country anymore), but at the same time I'm not going to pretend there aren't a couple million lazy, moronic assholes out there who made themselves poor and continue to keep themselves there.

I think everybody should have the opportunity to succeed, but that doesn't mean I'm deluded enough to think everyone would actually seize it.
 
2013-06-25 03:46:58 PM

cman: I thought LA was a liberal stronghold.

I was told these kinds of shenanigans don't happen in those cities


Developers and Business Associations aren't typically known for being liberal.

The Downtown Business Ass. in Portland often find themselves pushing their money & influence toward the exact opposite of what the majority of people in Portland want.  Every little thing becomes a battle.  Over & over again we have to march, petition, and speak at city hall meeting.  It gets exhausting having to constantly get everybody organized against a handful of rich people.  Ordinary people have shiat to do.
 
2013-06-25 03:47:29 PM

Pocket Ninja: I understand the inclination to celebrate this as a positive step, especially for those with a more "progressive" political bent, but there really is another edge to this particular sword. I won't go too far into macro economic theory or anything, since that would probably just leave most people hopelessly confused, but to boil it down to the most basic element, what you have to consider is the overall notion of "wealth inequality," which more and more people now accept as a possibly growing problem in our society.

Now, let's set aside for a moment the argument about whether or not wealth inequality is actually a problem and start with a question of definition. What is wealth inequality? Put simply, it is the growing gulf between "rich" and "poor" -- the supposedly vast and growing gulf between the two classes of Americans that some leading experts have defined as the "maker class" (ie, upper class/wealthy) and the "taker class" (ie, the poor). This gulf was, once upon a time, occupied by the "middle class," but unfortunately many of them have, since the recession, grown very lazy and are content to simply collect federal benefits like welfare, unemployment, food stamps, and Obamaphones. It's impossible to estimate the total value of these handouts, but let's just say for the sake of argument that they're each making around $80,000 per year.

Now, for some people, that might seem like a reasonable income. For many of the taker class, though, they end up simply squandering it. They buy things like "spinners" for their tires, or jewelry, or kegerators. And since most of them buy these things on credit or from places like RentaCenter, what this actually means is that they not only lose money buying these things, but they continue to lose money paying for them, too. This means, in turn, that they slip further down the "ladder" of economic prosperity. Which means that, also in turn, the government has to give them even *more* money just to keep them from falling off and breaking their necks (which would cost even more in medical bills). On the other hand, the members of the maker class are spending their money wisely, investing in job creation and real estate and hedge funds. They're moving steadily up the ladder. So it is these two separate types of motion -- takers moving down, makers moving up -- that creates wealth inequality.

So. We've established how social classes form. Again, my point here is not to cast any sort of value judgment on the system, but merely to explain how it works. In any case, at this point the upper class has established itself as successful. "Success," mind you, is a relative term -- they are successful in light of the fact that they are above those who are not successful. So, in order to continue to be successful, they must continue to  stay above the lower class. This, though, becomes increasingly difficult, because in order to keep the takers on the ladder, the government must start giving them even *more* money to maintain the "taking" lifestyles to which they've grown accustomed. The only way the government can get this additional money is by taking it from the maker class. This happens through taxes. Higher taxes on the rich means they have less money overall, which actually pulls them *down* the ladder. Good news, right? This brings them closer to the poor people, which means the inequality gap is shrinking.

No! Bad news! See, it doesn't actually work that way. It only *seems* like giving more money to the poor brings them up. But, really, what it does is give them even more money to squander. This, actually, pushes them *further down* the ladder, and their rate of downward descent is exponentially greater than the rate by which the upper classes are descending, because of interest on their credit cards. SO what's happening, really, is that EVERBODY is moving DOWN the ladder ...  but the poor are moving down faster. So the inequality gap is INCREASING, not decreasing, but even so, everybody is losing in the end. How to reverse this? Well, in a perverse, almost ironic way, it is by taking things away from the poor -- ie, removing those items which they must continue to spend money on to maintain -- that can actually arrest their downward trend, stabilize them on whatever rung they occupy, and thus help close the gap.

I think it's great to have an instinct to help the poor. But like so many things, those who are most motivated to help often misunderstand the problem. Everybody should take some time to learn the facts here so that we can all have a true understanding of this very important issue.


I believe you can claim victory, as it would be impossible to dispute what you wrote without begging the question.

Oh, and you are awesome as always.
 
2013-06-25 03:48:18 PM
Pocket Ninja: [snip]

I... I love you.
 
2013-06-25 03:48:35 PM
I can't believe this was actually a case.  How can you justify destroying personal property because "person doesn't own or rent a home"?


/hates homeless people and still thinks this is obvious
 
2013-06-25 03:51:09 PM

Pocket Ninja: I understand


that  one lo posts I've ever seen from you.  Now, you are the master, make no mistake, but I'm lazy and drunk.  I couldn't get through War and Peace right now, let alone that.

And now for something completely different:  On the idea of ownership.  How is it that if I leave something at your house, you have no real claim to it, you can't just go out can sell or give away my stuff.  But if I leave my car in your parking lot, you can have it towed, and a third party can hold my property hostage?

Just curious, really.  Probably a lot less important than whatever you wrote.
 
2013-06-25 03:53:17 PM
that  one lo posts I've ever seen from you.

Ok, really?

That is one of the longest posts I've ever seen from you.

There.  I think my wireless keyboard is too far away.  Or my fingers are fat and inebriated.

Or both.
 
2013-06-25 03:54:36 PM
I thought the precedent was well established in Finders vs. Keepers.
 
2013-06-25 03:55:12 PM

nocturnal001: I can't believe this was actually a case.  How can you justify destroying personal property because "person doesn't own or rent a home"?


/hates homeless people and still thinks this is obvious


Well when you leave stuff out on the street it's hard to expect that it'll be there when you get back.
 
2013-06-25 03:56:05 PM
Is that from the Book of Spock?
 
2013-06-25 03:56:48 PM

skozlaw: You jest, but some people really are poor for perfectly valid and self-inflicted reasons. And for the most part those people are, in fact, quite despicable.


That's true in some cases. Here's the thing: You don't want these people in the general workforce. Do you really think these are people who are going to make society better by participating in it? Are these people who are going to work hard after being cajoled into doing so? No. Frankly, I'd rather have some of these people on a dole they can scrape by on than farking things up in the workforce at large.
 
2013-06-25 03:57:02 PM

cman: I thought LA was a liberal stronghold.

I was told these kinds of shenanigans don't happen in those cities


You have a vivid imagination. This kind of shiat goes on everywhere.
 
2013-06-25 03:57:07 PM

Pocket Ninja: Everybody should take some time to learn the facts here so that we can all have a true understanding of this very important issue.


This could be an actual Wall Street Journal op-ed.
 
2013-06-25 03:57:34 PM

Pocket Ninja: I understand the inclination to celebrate this as a positive step, especially for those with a more "progressive" political bent, but there really is another edge to this particular sword. I won't go too far into macro economic theory or anything, since that would probably just leave most people hopelessly confused, but to boil it down to the most basic element, what you have to consider is the overall notion of "wealth inequality," which more and more people now accept as a possibly growing problem in our society.

Now, let's set aside for a moment the argument about whether or not wealth inequality is actually a problem and start with a question of definition. What is wealth inequality? Put simply, it is the growing gulf between "rich" and "poor" -- the supposedly vast and growing gulf between the two classes of Americans that some leading experts have defined as the "maker class" (ie, upper class/wealthy) and the "taker class" (ie, the poor). This gulf was, once upon a time, occupied by the "middle class," but unfortunately many of them have, since the recession, grown very lazy and are content to simply collect federal benefits like welfare, unemployment, food stamps, and Obamaphones. It's impossible to estimate the total value of these  ...


For anyone else I'd have stopped reading about 2 sentances in.  Thankfully PN usually delivers.  So no TL;DR for you.

*applause*
 
2013-06-25 03:58:14 PM

skozlaw: rumpelstiltskin: While the poor are great in theory, if you ever actually meet any of them you'll find they're as despicable as the rich.

You jest, but some people really are poor for perfectly valid and self-inflicted reasons. And for the most part those people are, in fact, quite despicable.


Can we legally steal from and harass despicable rich people, as well? Awesome! I'll get my baseball bat.
 
2013-06-25 03:58:32 PM
So they'll just put it all in "storage" now.
 
2013-06-25 04:00:35 PM

MaudlinMutantMollusk: Why won't they just die?


Not enough money for gorillas.
 
2013-06-25 04:01:13 PM

Arkanaut: I thought the precedent was well established in Finders vs. Keepers.


Technically, it would have had to have been Finders vs. Losers, would it?
 
2013-06-25 04:01:36 PM

MadHatter500: For anyone else I'd have stopped reading about 2 sentances in.


Aw, crap, that was a test, wasn't it?

"who here knows that this will pay off in lawls?"|

/still didn't read
//TL
 
2013-06-25 04:02:22 PM

HotWingConspiracy: So they'll just put it all in "storage" now.


No, they'll still do the same thing as they were doing before and just say the stuff was stolen.
 
2013-06-25 04:03:53 PM

Pray 4 Mojo: They should stop being poor. Geeez... it's pretty simple.



I know right, why don't they just borrow money from their parents and start a business or invest it in the market, you can get some pretty good returns now.
 
2013-06-25 04:04:08 PM

tricycleracer: Pocket Ninja: Everybody should take some time to learn the facts here so that we can all have a true understanding of this very important issue.

This could be an actual Wall Street Journal op-ed.


I was going to say something about how that post would have carried an entirely different feel if posted, verbatim, by certain other farkers.
 
2013-06-25 04:04:36 PM

A Dark Evil Omen: skozlaw: rumpelstiltskin: While the poor are great in theory, if you ever actually meet any of them you'll find they're as despicable as the rich.

You jest, but some people really are poor for perfectly valid and self-inflicted reasons. And for the most part those people are, in fact, quite despicable.

Can we legally steal from and harass despicable rich people, as well?


Isn't that what we call taxes?
 
2013-06-25 04:04:41 PM

MaudlinMutantMollusk: Why won't they just die?


Give it time.
 
2013-06-25 04:05:14 PM

MadHatter500: Pocket Ninja: I understand the inclination to celebrate this as a positive step, especially for those with a more "progressive" political bent, but there really is another edge to this particular sword. I won't go too far into macro economic theory or anything, since that would probably just leave most people hopelessly confused, but to boil it down to the most basic element, what you have to consider is the overall notion of "wealth inequality," which more and more people now accept as a possibly growing problem in our society.

Now, let's set aside for a moment the argument about whether or not wealth inequality is actually a problem and start with a question of definition. What is wealth inequality? Put simply, it is the growing gulf between "rich" and "poor" -- the supposedly vast and growing gulf between the two classes of Americans that some leading experts have defined as the "maker class" (ie, upper class/wealthy) and the "taker class" (ie, the poor). This gulf was, once upon a time, occupied by the "middle class," but unfortunately many of them have, since the recession, grown very lazy and are content to simply collect federal benefits like welfare, unemployment, food stamps, and Obamaphones. It's impossible to estimate the total value of these  ...

For anyone else I'd have stopped reading about 2 sentances in.  Thankfully PN usually delivers.  So no TL;DR for you.

*applause*


I was kinda hoping PN would come in and build a magnificent strawman about how with this ruling the homeless would start claiming that the few square yards of space under the overpass where they keep their stuff would now legally be their home, with full rights of inheritance, the right to buy or sell, and so on.

Instead he just offered up his usual boilerplate mildly altered to meet the circumstances of TFA. PN must be busy today... ;)
 
2013-06-25 04:05:32 PM

Aarontology: I am shocked property rights aren't dependent upon class.

-=-
I am shocked SCOTUS actually protected the people.
 
2013-06-25 04:05:32 PM

Pray 4 Mojo: They should stop being poor. Geeez... it's pretty simple.


Maybe they would be less poor if cops stopped taking all their stuff. It's just another form of taxation and reduces taxes is the only solution to any government problem. This, this is completely consistent with what the GOP actually believes.

Tada!
 
2013-06-25 04:05:44 PM

sendtodave: MadHatter500: For anyone else I'd have stopped reading about 2 sentances in.

Aw, crap, that was a test, wasn't it?

"who here knows that this will pay off in lawls?"|

/still didn't read
//TL


You Sir, have FAILED

Now we have to ask you to leave the PN club.  Out, Out I say!
 
2013-06-25 04:06:19 PM
Pocket Ninja:I understand the inclination to celebrate [snip]

I love you.
 
2013-06-25 04:08:04 PM

Saiga410: A Dark Evil Omen: skozlaw: rumpelstiltskin: While the poor are great in theory, if you ever actually meet any of them you'll find they're as despicable as the rich.

You jest, but some people really are poor for perfectly valid and self-inflicted reasons. And for the most part those people are, in fact, quite despicable.

Can we legally steal from and harass despicable rich people, as well?

Isn't that what we call taxes?


Wealthy capitalists enact taxes for things wealthy capitalists want (military, police, extensive roadways, and so on an so forth), taxes that mostly burden the working class, and then whine about theft? Oh you.
 
2013-06-25 04:10:11 PM

theknuckler_33: Arkanaut: I thought the precedent was well established in Finders vs. Keepers.

Technically, it would have had to have been Finders vs. Losers, would it?


Look, I'll be honest with you, I'm not a lawyer.
 
2013-06-25 04:11:40 PM

Pray 4 Mojo: They should stop being poor. Geeez... it's pretty simple.


Yeah. They go out and buy some money!
 
2013-06-25 04:12:51 PM

skozlaw: rumpelstiltskin: While the poor are great in theory, if you ever actually meet any of them you'll find they're as despicable as the rich.

You jest, but some people really are poor for perfectly valid and self-inflicted reasons. And for the most part those people are, in fact, quite despicable.

As a libby liberal liberalist I'm all for flattening the class structure some by ensuring that the rules are fair for everyone (because apparently thinking that becoming rich by nearly any means shouldn't entitle you to special rules meant to keep you rich no matter what else you do is what cuts it as "liberal" in this country anymore), but at the same time I'm not going to pretend there aren't a couple million lazy, moronic assholes out there who made themselves poor and continue to keep themselves there.

I think everybody should have the opportunity to succeed, but that doesn't mean I'm deluded enough to think everyone would actually seize it.


You've summed up my thoughts on the matter better than I ever could.

I generally come down as pretty liberal but living in LA has made me more Conservative if anything. This city makes you hate rich people and poor people in equal measure.
 
2013-06-25 04:14:12 PM

Arkanaut: theknuckler_33: Arkanaut: I thought the precedent was well established in Finders vs. Keepers.

Technically, it would have had to have been Finders vs. Losers, would it?

Look, I'll be honest with you, I'm not a lawyer.


Obviously. Keepers vs. Weepers has a much better ring to it.
 
2013-06-25 04:14:17 PM

Lunchlady: You've summed up my thoughts on the matter better than I ever could.

I generally come down as pretty liberal but living in LA has made me more Conservative if anything. This city makes you hate rich people and poor people in equal measure.


Yeah, victim-blaming is pretty easy, you're right!
 
2013-06-25 04:15:08 PM
By declining to take this case, the Supreme Court avoided expanding the 9th Circuit's protection nationwide. Other cities  can and are stealing from the homeless.
 
2013-06-25 04:16:36 PM

nocturnal001: hates homeless people


You sound "Christian"
 
2013-06-25 04:20:06 PM

A Dark Evil Omen: Lunchlady: You've summed up my thoughts on the matter better than I ever could.

I generally come down as pretty liberal but living in LA has made me more Conservative if anything. This city makes you hate rich people and poor people in equal measure.

Yeah, victim-blaming is pretty easy, you're right!


I like how you completely disregarded the even-handed thought process of the posts and just decided to attack me. Good work.
 
2013-06-25 04:21:09 PM
There's a panhandler in Harvard Square who, up until about a year ago, ran a $2 book stand on Mass Avenue just across from Harvard Yard. The local bookstores weren't too happy about it, I assure you, but Ken kept being dragged into court and then winning his case on First Amendment grounds, or so he told me. In any case he was running the bookstand when I started working in Cambridge ten years ago. He had his books in a series of boxes he would stack up and cover with a tarp at night. It was about ten feet long, six feet high and eight feet wide. Last year he decided to close up shop; his supplier raised his prices, it was costing him money to store the off-site books, and the various electronic book formats were killing his business. For a while he gave away his books, then for about six months the "store" sat at the curb under its tarp, and then it was gone.

I later learned that at some point he hauled away the last of the books but maintained the tarp-covered structure and was renting it out to homeless people to sleep in. The man has the makings of a successful entrepreneur, but his moral failings and principled disinclination to work got in the way. He is possibly the hardest-working lazy man I know.
 
2013-06-25 04:23:41 PM

nocturnal001: I can't believe this was actually a case.  How can you justify destroying personal property because "person doesn't own or rent a home"?


Read TFA.  The people were leaving their possessions in shopping carts out in the open, blankets on the sidewalk, unwashed clothes. The SCOTUS kicked it back to a lower court which ruled that the items had to present a public danger in order to be removed

This wasn't the police and town officials just taking stuff, it was them cleaning up a street only to find homeless would come back later and say "Hey, where's all of our stuff?"  The people who walk the streets have every right to them as the homeless but when the homeless strew their crap everywhere it denies the rights of others.  Hence why the issue went to court.
 
2013-06-25 04:24:04 PM
Was this really a thing, seriously?
 
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