New study finds poverty leads people to focus on short term goals while ignoring the long view

Nov 02, 2012 by Bob Yirka report

(Phys.org)—A new study done by a team of researchers with business, psychology and economics backgrounds suggests that people who live in poverty tend to make poor long term financial decisions because their economic situation makes it difficult to focus on anything but the near term. They have published a paper in the journal Science describing lab experiments they've conducted that they say show that when faced with limited resources, people tend to focus on the needs at hand, rather than the long term, which might explain seemingly contradictory behavior exhibited by poor people, such as taking out high interest loans.

The researchers note that many people over many years have studied the behavior of poor people in attempting to understand why most don't take steps to pull themselves out of their situation. Quite often, instead of saving and planning for the future, for example, those living in spend all the money they do have on less than necessary items and then borrow money from high interest lenders to pay for necessities such as rent or food. Some have suggested, they say, that many such people suffer from or simply lack the skills necessary to advance themselves.

In this new study, the researchers conducted several experiments meant to discover if living in poverty itself may lead people to make poor . All of the trials were based on being given a certain amount of resources (playing time and/or points) when playing a – some were given a lot, others very little. Play was then monitored to judge decision making skills and to compare the choices made by the "rich" versus the "poor." The researchers found that those given at the outset, tended to focus almost exclusively on accomplishing tasks at hand, even as they knew their limited time allotment to accomplish goals was running short. To allow play to continue, the researchers introduced borrowing at increasingly high rates. They found that in the game, just as in real life, those with the most limited resources tended to be the heaviest borrowers, despite having to pay the higher cost.

The researchers say their experiments indicate that living in poverty is itself enough to cause people to make decisions that would seem contrary to those looking in from the outside. Because of that, they say, programs to assist the poor should focus on ways of extracting people from their environments and then providing assistance, rather than offering assistance that serves only to allow those living in such conditions to maintain their way of life.

Explore further: Enhanced communication key to successful teamwork in dynamic environments

More information: Some Consequences of Having Too Little, Science, 2 November 2012: Vol. 338 no. 6107 pp. 682-685. DOI: 10.1126/science.1222426

ABSTRACT
Poor individuals often engage in behaviors, such as excessive borrowing, that reinforce the conditions of poverty. Some explanations for these behaviors focus on personality traits of the poor. Others emphasize environmental factors such as housing or financial access. We instead consider how certain behaviors stem simply from having less. We suggest that scarcity changes how people allocate attention: It leads them to engage more deeply in some problems while neglecting others. Across several experiments, we show that scarcity leads to attentional shifts that can help to explain behaviors such as overborrowing. We discuss how this mechanism might also explain other puzzles of poverty.

Related Stories

Recommended for you

The changing landscape of religion

14 hours ago

Religion is a key factor in demography, important for projections of future population growth as well as for other social indicators. A new journal, Yearbook of International Religious Demography, is the first to bring a quan ...

Abusive leadership infects entire team

15 hours ago

Supervisors who are abusive to individual employees can actually throw the entire work team into conflict, hurting productivity, finds new research led by a Michigan State University business scholar.

User comments : 89

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

verkle
1.2 / 5 (19) Nov 02, 2012
Put another way, those in poverty aren't as interested in earthly goals. But, they tend to have a greater spirituality that leads them to seek more eternal goals. Which is why the great Master once said "Blessed are you that are poor: for yours is the kingdom of God." And again, "When you make a party/feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind."

These people are special.

ryggesogn2
2.2 / 5 (23) Nov 02, 2012
When you are up to your ass in alligators it's hard to remember you are trying to drain the swamp.
Anyone's first priority is daily survival.
But, when the state steps in provides too much quality security, it demotivates many to strive for long term independent prosperity.
The safety net becomes a hammock.
One way to stop this is for the govt to get out of the business buying votes with welfare and to enable private charities to to have direct contact and to end the entitlement mentality and replace it with a gratitude mentality.
The 'entitled' have no sense of gratitude as we are now seeing in Greece and will see elsewhere when govts continue to go broke.
Lurker2358
3.8 / 5 (20) Nov 02, 2012
But, when the state steps in provides too much quality security, it demotivates many to strive for long term independent prosperity.


You fool, I've never once met anybody who actually WANTS to be on government assistance long term.

... to enable private charities to to have direct contact and to end the entitlement mentality and replace it with a gratitude mentality.

Private charities are regulated because most of them are incredibly wasteful and corrupt; far more wasteful and corrupt than government anyway.

The 'entitled' have no sense of gratitude as we are now seeing in Greece and will see elsewhere when govts continue to go broke.


I don't think you've ever been sick or injured a day in your life. Your comments show a complete lack of empathy, understanding, or respect for people who suffer anomalous medical conditions due to family history or maybe accident; things they have no control over.
Lurker2358
3 / 5 (12) Nov 02, 2012
Yeah, I was born into a family with a history of high blood pressure, stroke, heart attacks, and even high rates of cancer on BOTH sides of the family. Only ONE of my Grandparents on just one side fo the family has lived to her life expectancy, and even she had a 7 bypass heart surgery. One of my grandfathers died at 50 years old and the other at 60 and my other grandmother at about 65, all from heart attacks. My dad died at 50 (brain cancer,) but had an abnormal heart rhythm all of his life since he was a child, and was sick literally ALL the time from about his mid thirties, with multiple strokes (probably precursors of the cancer, but who knows).

Anyway, I'm currently on SSI and medicaid, at 31 years old, because I have been horribly sick from high blood pressure and neuropathy, among other things, which was literally killing me and driving me to severe physical pain, anxiety, cataplexy, and other fainting spells.

I would most likely be DEAD or crippled if not for SSI and medicaid
Lurker2358
3 / 5 (10) Nov 02, 2012
So let me ask you something Rygg:

Am I supposed to take some half-baked part time job or minimum wage job that barely pays more than what I'm on, knowing that such jobs fire people and lay them off at a high rate?

Because there are no full time jobs around here for ANYONE that doesn't already work in maybe the legal or medical industry, maybe offshore oilfield workers too.

I suffered from severe anxiety all my life, and neuropathy all of my adult life, and didn't even know what it was, because I never went to a doctor until it became absolutely necessary.

and my family was poor whenever I was younger, but it wasn't from parents spending insane amounts of money or taking out high interest loans.

It's because we were all sick. My dad was sick all the time, and I had a unique strain of Spinal Meningitis when I was few weeks old, and spent something like a month in a bubble chamber. Then to top it all off, our house burned down when I was eight years old...
Lurker2358
3.3 / 5 (12) Nov 02, 2012
So tell my, Rygg:

What kind of shit storm have you been through in life, to give you even an inkling of an idea what it is to "really" be poor?

I used to swear I'd find a way out of it, and I never did know how that would be, but now I'm right back in the middle of it.

In all likelihood, I'm going to be sick and on meds I'd never be able to afford for probably the rest of my life.

And yeah, even sick people have to do something to try to stay sane and healthy mentally, really even more so than others, so they are going to spend money on entertainment, because it actually is a necessity in many ways.

Taking out high interest loans, well, that's just foolishness in many cases, but then again, traditional loans are hard or impossible to get unless you already have money. So people who are "poor" or just "struggling" are screwed when they get in an emergency medical situation or when they need emergency auto repairs or something. They get screwed both ways.
dschlink
3.2 / 5 (13) Nov 02, 2012
You fool, I've never once met anybody who actually WANTS to be on government assistance long term.


Well, I know several people who are just fine with living on SSI and Medicaid. Neither has any real health problems, they just prefer to not work and are very good at scamming the system. Not saying they are the general rule, but they do exist.
ValeriaT
1.9 / 5 (12) Nov 02, 2012
New study finds poverty leads people to focus on short term goals while ignoring the long view
This effect is actually two-sided. Rich people tend to spend their lives with superficial consumerism and short-term spending of their money, whereas the poor people tend to spend their lives with solving of money getting. If you give people too much money, they will waste their time with their investing and spending too. Many brilliant thinkers and inventors did come from rather poor social environment. That is to say, there exists an optimal wealth level, which becomes most productive from long-term perspective.
ryggesogn2
2 / 5 (21) Nov 02, 2012
Am I supposed to take some half-baked part time job or minimum wage job that barely pays more than what I'm on, knowing that such jobs fire people and lay them off at a high rate?


So you want to be on the govt dole?

The Salvation Army is one of the best private charities in the world.
There are sob stories all over the world and people overcome them. What are you doing about it except making excuses?
Lurker2358
3.5 / 5 (19) Nov 02, 2012
So you want to be on the govt dole?


No you stupid fool, I already said that, but I do not have much of a choice.

You're too stupid and high minded to realize that, a lot like Mitt Romney.

The Salvation Army is one of the best private charities in the world.
There are sob stories all over the world and people overcome them. What are you doing about it except making excuses?


You stupid SOB, you should be banned.

I can't even get help to get a halter monitor or an MRI to find out how bad the damage is, because the cost of the medicines and the doctor visits alone puts me over the limit every month, and you're asking me about excuses?

Do you even know what the stuff I've described is?

Beside, when I have a job I usually work overtime, days, nights, weekends, whatever is available.

It's really easy for people like you to claim somebody is making excuses.

I wish you could feel the pain I put up with, you'd be singing a different tune then.
Tektrix
3.6 / 5 (14) Nov 02, 2012
Right on Lurk. The privileged believe they are where they are and who they are as a result of something they did. This is the epitome of arrogance. They and everyone else are manifested of the environment and chance- no one has the wherewithal to bootstrap themselves into life. They exist because there is a niche for them. Remove the niche and they become nothing. The same is true for all of us. And the people that love to divide- that love to think they are better or closer to perfection- that believe they are somehow chosen to be the progenitors of all that is right and holy- these "self-made" people simply lack the sort of grace that would actually improve life for everyone. They cannot be counted on to help because they are their own objects of desire. That's why they call themselves, "Objectivists."
ryggesogn2
2.3 / 5 (18) Nov 02, 2012
"programs to assist the poor should focus on ways of extracting people from their environments and then providing assistance, rather than offering assistance that serves only to allow those living in such conditions to maintain their way of life."

And this it contrary to a socialist state that needs to keep people dependent upon them.
Workfare rules have been suspended by Obama. His regime encourages everyone to take food stamps and ridicules independence.
Charities have an incentive to put themselves out of business. Govt programs do not.
LEVI506
2.8 / 5 (9) Nov 02, 2012
Yet another argument for birth control. No not the poor, the researchers who spent time and money, probably tax dollars, on something a blatantly obvious as this. Like why are so many poor people fat? BECAUSE FAT FOODS ARE CHEAPER. "God must love stupid people, he made so many of them."
ryggesogn2
2.2 / 5 (20) Nov 02, 2012
I do not have much of a choice.

So you feel you entitled to take the wealth of others?

""For Every Person Added to Jobs Rolls Since January 2009, 75 People Added To Food Stamp Rolls." "
"Total spending on federal means-tested welfare—food stamps, public housing, social services, cash aid, etc.—is now approximately $1 trillion. That amount is enough, if converted to cash, to send every household beneath the federal poverty line an annual check for $60,000."
http://www.weekly...073.html
Tektrix
3.6 / 5 (14) Nov 02, 2012
"So you feel you entitled to take the wealth of others?"

Except that the "wealth" you talk of is not your own- you acquired everything you have from someone else! The infrastructures you use to gather and hoard were not of your own making- they were provided for you! And yet you have the gall and audacity to demonize anyone who has not received the gifts that you have?! Again- you have made yourself the object of your own desire and insist on projecting your self-fetish on the world around you. It is utterly disgusting.
ryggesogn2
2.1 / 5 (19) Nov 02, 2012
you acquired everything you have from someone else!

BS
Starting from first principles, wealth is created by those who farm, ranch and mine. Farmers grow their wealth. Miners dig for their wealth. They did not acquire if from someone else.
Then, the products produced by farmers and miners have value added by others. At every step in this process, the exchange of goods and services is voluntary and the wealth created at each step is earned, not acquired.
You have no right to the wealth earned by others.
Govts can only acquire wealth by plunder, forcibly taking it.
VendicarD
3.7 / 5 (15) Nov 02, 2012
Actually, they have acquired their wealth from future generations.

"Starting from first principles, wealth is created by those who farm, ranch and mine. Farmers grow their wealth. Miners dig for their wealth. They did not acquire if from someone else." - RyggTard

Did they transport their goods over public roads, or use a public postal service? Were they protected by government run police forces? Were their transactions secured by laws created and enforced by government entities? Were the buildings protected by government firefighters? If there were any employees were they covered by government health insurance, vaccination programs, or did they benefit from government sponsored medical research?

Did they drive to work on public roads created by government? Or public transportation provided by government.

Where did the production waste go to? Was it dumped and presumed that nature of future generations would take care of it? Or was it sent to government run facilities?

SteveS
3.1 / 5 (10) Nov 02, 2012
@dschlink

Well, I know several people who are just fine with living on SSI and Medicaid. Neither has any real health problems, they just prefer to not work and are very good at scamming the system. Not saying they are the general rule, but they do exist.


Have you reported these several people you know? The vast majority of people on SSI need it to have any reasonable quality of life. Because of the several people you know and the others like them these people are being unfairly demonised. If you know several people fraudulently claiming benefits surely it is your duty to report them.

The greatness of America is in how it treats its weakest members: the elderly, the infirm, the handicapped, the underprivileged, the unborn. Bill Federer
VendicarD
3.5 / 5 (13) Nov 02, 2012
It takes a community to produce wealth.

If you are a business owner you might be proud of your accomplishments.

But the reality is that when it comes to a large part of your business...

You didn't build that.

Society did through the construct of government.
VendicarD
3.1 / 5 (15) Nov 02, 2012
Don't you give your tax dollars to your government willingly?

"Govts can only acquire wealth by plunder, forcibly taking it." - RyggTard

When was the last time they came and took it at gunpoint?

Please let us know Tard Boy.

If you don't feel that the benefit you receive from being a member of American society is worth the cost in taxes, why are you still an American?

Why not renounce your citizenship and go live somewhere else. You know. In the Libertarian Paradise of Somalia for example.

Tell us Tard Boy. Why don't you just move?

kochevnik
3.5 / 5 (15) Nov 02, 2012
@ryggesogn2 Workfare rules have been suspended by Obama.
You are wrong. You blindly accepted another Romney lie.
VendicarD
3.2 / 5 (11) Nov 02, 2012
Yup. That is what Libertarian/Randite economics has done to America.

And you are still preaching the same insane Randite poison that even the prime disciple of Rand has admitted caused the problem you are whining about.

That tells us much about your mental disorder RyggTard.

"For Every Person Added to Jobs Rolls Since January 2009, 75 People Added To Food Stamp Rolls." - RyggTard
VendicarD
3.2 / 5 (11) Nov 02, 2012
Such is the depth of the economic mismanagement of the Bush Administration.

"Total spending on federal means-tested welfare—food stamps, public housing, social services, cash aid, etc.—is now approximately $1 trillion." - RyggTard

America barely escaped entering a decades long grand economic depression, and did so only through massive spending of the form you document.

Like it or not, in relative magnitude, that 1 trillion represents economic stimulus of $12,000 per American family. It is $12,000 per family that is entering the economy and putting people to work, feeding people, housing people, and causing all manner of economic activity.

How much deeper would America's near depression be if that stimulus was removed, or never arrived in the first place?

Poor RyggTard. He knows nothing about Econimics, or even basic arithmetic, but he is sure he knows everything about economics cause his gut tells him so.
VendicarD
3.2 / 5 (11) Nov 02, 2012
Mindless Claptrap.

"And this it contrary to a socialist state that needs to keep people dependent upon them." - RyggTard

Poor RyggTard. Workfare was a program set up by The Clinton Administration.

"Workfare rules have been suspended by Obama." - RyggTard

Poor RyggTard. He falls for every lie Faux news feeds him.

Mitt's despicable lies about Obama and Workfare.

http://articles.n...re-check
VendicarD
2.8 / 5 (9) Nov 02, 2012
You don't seem to understand RyggTard.

He wants you dead. Or living in a ditch somewhere.

As long as it lowers his taxes.

"I would most likely be DEAD or crippled if not for SSI and medicaid" - Lurker
VendicarD
3.5 / 5 (8) Nov 02, 2012
I can confirm the study myself with poor people I know.

The more intelligent ones have long term goals. But generally poor people are concerned with surviving tomorrow, and don't have the resources to save and plan to use decades in the future.

Deathclock
3.4 / 5 (10) Nov 02, 2012
Yeah when your primary concern is feeding yourself RIGHT NOW you tend not to dwell too much on the future...
ryggesogn2
2.2 / 5 (10) Nov 02, 2012
@ryggesogn2 Workfare rules have been suspended by Obama.
You are wrong. You blindly accepted another Romney lie.

"HHS informed states that they may "test alternative and innovative strategies, policies and procedures that are designed to improve employment outcomes for needy families," rather than enforce the work requirements attached to the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program."
http://washington...Qjz3hGuk
ryggesogn2
1.6 / 5 (13) Nov 02, 2012
Yeah when your primary concern is feeding yourself RIGHT NOW you tend not to dwell too much on the future...

How do those dumpster diving New Yorkers like their govts response so far?
ayesdi_fdesay
3.7 / 5 (9) Nov 02, 2012
Sad that even research like this isn't evidence enough of the reality that the libertarian psychos refuse to acknowledge, but I suppose these are typically the same people that refuse to accept the 97-to-98% worldwide consensus on what's causing global warming (humans). At this point it's clear that the only thing keeping them from removing their blinders is arrogance, stubborness, and a twisted contempt for the less fortunate borne out of their own guilt (I say "guilt" because I do actually believe such people have empathy).
VendicarD
3.7 / 5 (9) Nov 02, 2012
Roughly 2,500 people have checked into New York City's emergency storm shelters as of Monday morning, less than 4% of the total capacity

http://online.wsj...862.html

"How do those dumpster diving New Yorkers like their govts response so far?" - RyggTard

How many shelters are corporations in NY running RyggTard?

You Poor Tard you...
VendicarD
4 / 5 (8) Nov 02, 2012
Odd that RyggTard in another thread claimed that Obama discontinued the workfare program set up by Clinton, but here he claims the opposite.

"HHS informed states that they may "test alternative and innovative strategies, policies and procedures that are designed to improve employment outcomes for needy families," - RyggTard

These Barking Randites can't seem to keep their lying consistant between threads.
Tektrix
3.7 / 5 (9) Nov 02, 2012

How do those dumpster diving New Yorkers like their govts response so far?


"Those people" you so happily vilify gave up on any response a long time ago. But your Wall Street friends certainly didn't when they found themselves tits up in a barrel full of woe, did they? You have no idea how close to poor you really are, do you, Rygg?

kochevnik
2.5 / 5 (8) Nov 02, 2012
@ryggesogn2 Workfare rules have been suspended by Obama.
You are wrong. You blindly accepted another Romney lie.

"HHS informed states that they may "test alternative and innovative strategies, policies and procedures that are designed to improve employment outcomes for needy families," rather than enforce the work requirements attached to the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program."
http://washington...Qjz3hGuk
Nearly all states were receiving a full or partial waiver from work requirements before Obama took office. http://www.factch...stretch/
ryggesogn2
1.7 / 5 (12) Nov 02, 2012
How do those in DPRK like socialism?
rubberman
3.1 / 5 (8) Nov 02, 2012
"Why not renounce your citizenship and go live somewhere else. You know. In the Libertarian Paradise of Somalia for example."

This would also afford you the opportunity to see what true poverty is. Only in america are the poor obese....
PhotonX
4.3 / 5 (6) Nov 02, 2012
For Every Person Added to Jobs Rolls Since January 2009, 75 People Added To Food Stamp Rolls.
So are you saying that for the 12 million jobs Romney is promising to magically produce (hopefully in America this time), we will add 900 million people to the food stamp program? Or is this statistic anomalous evidence of how so narrowly close we came to total economic collapse, thanks to the deregulated financial environment you and the banksters seem so fond of?

As far as the article goes, none of us who has lived hand-to-mouth needs any kind of study to have easily reached these conclusions.
aironeous
3 / 5 (2) Nov 03, 2012
Holy denials batman. They have a research report staring them right in the face telling them they are wrong and they still deny it. There is no winning with these people.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (8) Nov 03, 2012
"Why not renounce your citizenship and go live somewhere else. You know. In the Libertarian Paradise of Somalia for example."

This would also afford you the opportunity to see what true poverty is. Only in america are the poor obese....

Why should I move? Socialist are turning prosperity into poverty in the US and Europe.
BTW, Somalia, with little or no central govt, is as well off, or better in some ways, than their socialist neighbors.
CalculusKing
5 / 5 (4) Nov 04, 2012
Rygg, Somalia is as of right now starving to death.
And as for socialism, you have no clue what the kind of socialism you are referring to is. As somebody who happens to know a Russian immigrant who hated the corruption there, I can tell you that the American Right Wing is taking us as far as it can towards that corruption.
Oh, I also have a crazy Communist relative who thinks that Stalin was great. He sounded just like you, denial of facts, tone of message, and complete assurance in his arrogance that he was right. To paraphrase John Stewart, you are full of s**t.
ethermind
3.7 / 5 (3) Nov 04, 2012
New study finds poverty leads people to focus on short term goals while ignoring the long view
This effect is actually two-sided. Rich people tend to spend their lives with superficial consumerism and short-term spending of their money, whereas the poor people tend to spend their lives with solving of money getting. If you give people too much money, they will waste their time with their investing and spending too. Many brilliant thinkers and inventors did come from rather poor social environment. That is to say, there exists an optimal wealth level, which becomes most productive from long-term perspective.

I like your perspective. I believe that many of the problems facing the U.S. today are related to inequities in wealth distribution. Some are so rich and privileged that they can be assured of success without any real ability or effort (eg. Paris Hilton and George W. Bush) while many are so poor that they lack access to basic resources for advancement.
ethermind
2 / 5 (2) Nov 04, 2012

The safety net becomes a hammock.
One way to stop this is for the govt to get out of the business buying votes with welfare and to enable private charities to to have direct contact and to end the entitlement mentality and replace it with a gratitude mentality.
The 'entitled' have no sense of gratitude as we are now seeing in Greece and will see elsewhere when govts continue to go broke.
In ancient Rome there was bread and circus, paid for and endorsed by the nobility. Doesn't SSI and the rest of the modern safety net benefit the super rich in a similar way by placating the masses enough to tolerate their existence. Why don't wealthy conservatives recognize, as Marley sang, that "a hungry man is an angry man." Has anyone ever heard of the social contract? Who thought of that? La propriete, c'est le vol!
VendicarD
not rated yet Nov 04, 2012
"How do those in DPRK like socialism?" - RyggTard

How did Black American slaves like Capitalism?
VendicarD
not rated yet Nov 04, 2012

"Why should I move? " - RyggTard

The choice of course is yours. But since you clearly feel that you don't receive sufficient benefit from being a member of American society to justify the taxes you pay to maintain that society, it would be logical for you to go somewhere where you will receive more benefit.

How odd of you to not recognize the fact that if you don't like the service you are getting from one supplier, you can just move to another one.

You are continually claiming that America is cheating you and stealing from you, even though you are giving your money to the state willingly.

So if you are unwilling, renounce your citizenship and leave.

The only thing preventing you is hypocrisy, insanity, or laziness.

Which is it Tard Boy?
VendicarD
not rated yet Nov 04, 2012
Actually, in his last few public appearances, Romney is starting to talk about the U.S. entering into another recession during his first term.

Ronmey needs another recession to escape his promises of course.

But Republicans aren't bright enough to realize that they are plotting to produce a Grand Economic Depression.

"So are you saying that for the 12 million jobs Romney is promising to magically produce" - PhotonX
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Nov 04, 2012
Calc,
"We find that although Somalia is
poor, its relative economic performance has improved during its period of statelessness.
We also describe how Somalia has provided basic law and order and a currency, which
have enabled the country to achieve the coordination that has led to improvements in its
standard of living."
Somalia After State Collapse: Chaos or Improvement?
Benjamin Powell
Ryan Ford
Alex Nowraste"

American Right Wing is taking us as far as it can towards that corruption.

Monica, Benghazi, Solyndra, Fast and Furious, Black Panther vote intimidation, White House Czars, Fannie and Freddie, ObamaCare,...

Arrogance at being correct? Data doesn't lie. Stalin was one of greatest murderers in history.
Free markets, limited govt have been PROVEN to lead to liberty and prosperity for those who live in it.
Plato, Moore's Utopia, Hobbs, Marx have all be proven to be wrong. Mises, Locke,Montesquieu , Hayek and Rand have all proven tobe correct.

ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) Nov 04, 2012
Calc, where has socialism created an innovative, prosperous and free society?
But then that is NOT the real objective of socialism is it. The objective of socialism is power. Power to control the individual.
Even the Scandinavian socialism enshrines the socialism of jantelegan stamping down innovation and forcing the successful to leave the country. Their cage may be gilded but it is still a cage and they are not immune from running out of other people's money. Maybe that's why Sweden ended its wealth tax.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) Nov 04, 2012
Calc, have you heard of this guy:
"Frank Marshall Davis, Communist Party USA (CPUSA) number 47544, was a 20th century American who wrote pro-Soviet propaganda in newspaper columns and was a loyal Soviet patriot."
" Davis would work with Robert Taylor, who just happened to be the grandfather of Valerie Jarrett." "Valerie Jarrett today is Obama's right-hand woman in the White House."
"Frank Marshall Davis, Obama's mentor, also worked with Vernon Jarrett in these circles. Vernon Jarrett was Valerie's father-in-law. And it's worse still. Davis, Obama's mentor, also worked with Harry and David Canter, two other Chicago communists. The Canters mentored a young man named David Axelrod in Chicago in the 1970s. So, the troika that's arguably running America today—Obama and Valerie Jarrett and David Axelrod"
http://frontpagem...-mentor/
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) Nov 04, 2012
"In a November 1946 column, Davis wrote: "I'm tired of being beaned with those double meaning words like 'sacred institutions' and 'the American way of life' which our flag-waving fascists and lukewarm liberals hurl at us day and night." "

Sounds like many who post here. Of course fascists are socialists, too.
CalculusKing
5 / 5 (2) Nov 04, 2012
Calc,
"We find that although Somalia is
poor, its relative economic performance has improved during its period of statelessness.
We also describe how Somalia has provided basic law and order and a currency, which
have enabled the country to achieve the coordination that has led to improvements in its
standard of living."
Somalia After State Collapse: Chaos or Improvement?
Benjamin Powell
Ryan Ford
Alex Nowraste"


Somalia is in a state of FAMINE. It is a humanitarian crisis and without a government to protect its people it is currently being taken over by a combination of Islamic extremists and criminal organizations. Are you an anarchist or what?

CalculusKing
5 / 5 (2) Nov 04, 2012

Monica, Benghazi, Solyndra, Fast and Furious, Black Panther vote intimidation, White House Czars, Fannie and Freddie, ObamaCare,...


Monica? How about Gingrich's three wives? Benghazi's perpetrators are currently being arrested (several suspects are already in custody). Solyndra had paid off most of its federal dollars already and the success rate of US Govt. investment is higher than that of Bain Capital. Fast and Furious was trying to track a gun trade already made legal by wingnuts in the South (those gang members would have bought guns from the next stall and killed Terry anyway). The Black Panthers are effectively dead (more dead than the KKK and Aryan Brotherhood anyway) and the only voter suppression is done by making voter restrictions on poor and minorities even though so little voter fraud goes on that it could not swing Bush v. Gore.
ValeriaT
3.7 / 5 (3) Nov 04, 2012
Romney is starting to talk about the U.S. entering into another recession during his first term.
I would accept the progressive republicans like the Santorum - but the dull rhetoric of Romney promises nothing but the return at the end of Bush government, when the financial crisis just escalated. Why to repeat the exactly the same mistake twice-times? Not to say, the world is developing fast and the things changed: today USA must have judge their foreign policy way more carefully, than the republicans did, when the price of oil was kept artificially low. The next war adventure would be something, which contemporary USA couldn't afford without deep impact to their economy. After all, I don't see a huge difference between adventurist spending of public money into Medicare program and between spending of money into Afghanistan or Iran wars. They both increase the tax load, they're both controlled with government and as such socialistic by their very nature.
CalculusKing
5 / 5 (2) Nov 04, 2012
The White house czars have far less control than you think, Fannie and Freddie happened because Bush cut regulations down to nearly nothing, and Obamacare (back then Romneycare) was created by the Heritage Foundation and Romney and endorsed by both Gingrich and Romney until Obama decided on bipartisan heath care reform.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Nov 04, 2012
The White house czars have far less control than you think, Fannie and Freddie happened because Bush cut regulations down to nearly nothing, and Obamacare (back then Romneycare) was created by the Heritage Foundation and Romney and endorsed by both Gingrich and Romney until Obama decided on bipartisan heath care reform.

White House czars should not exist.
Freddie and Fannie were required by laws passed by Congress and pushed by Barney Frank and Dodd to force the GSE's to purchased poor quality mortgages in 1992. BTW, you recall many received 'special' loans for their service.
"Former Countrywide Financial loan officer Robert Feinberg says Mr. Dodd knowingly saved thousands of dollars on his refinancing of two properties in 2003 as part of a special program the California mortgage company had for the influential. "
http://online.wsj...681.html
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Nov 04, 2012
"That a "Friends of Angelo" program existed is not in dispute. It was crucial to the boom that Countrywide enjoyed before its fortunes turned. While most of the company was aggressively lending to risky borrowers and off-loading those mortgages in bulk to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Mr. Feinberg's department was charged with making sure those who could influence Fannie and Freddie's appetite for risk were sufficiently buttered up. As a Banking Committee bigshot, Mr. Dodd was perfectly placed to be buttered."
"One indicator of his influence is the $165,400 in campaign contributions -- more than to any other politician -- that Fan and Fred have given him since 1989, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. These contributions are legal. But favors like those Mr. Dodd is alleged to have received may not be. "
http://online.wsj...681.html
lengould100
3 / 5 (2) Nov 04, 2012
Yeah, someone should explain to Rygg. Social democracy is Sweden and Canada. Its nothing to do with Communist Dictatorship, simply does its best to give each citizen a fair start in life, though that is extremely difficult still, when the rich can pitch their kids into Harvard or Yale and give them a practical guarantee of wealth in future, something which the poor simply cannot do.

At least, we can try to ensure a guaranteed access to DECENT education for anyone willing to work for it, and that no child needs to miss their opportunity simply because a parent needs abnormal medical care.

And Rygg, BTW this social democracy in Canada has been largely implemented and is now run by our Conservative Party (there are no parties to the right of them, and three to the left), and they wouldn't dare touch the medical insurance system to weaken it else they couldn't get elected dogcatcher.
lengould100
5 / 5 (1) Nov 04, 2012
And BTW, Rygg, "socialist" Canada has a higher GDP per capita than your precious (from our POV) crazy-right-wing-nut USA.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Nov 04, 2012
"Canada's economic freedom score is 79.9, making its economy the 6th freest in the 2012 Index. Its overall score is 0.9 point lower than last year, reflecting worsening scores for government size and monetary freedom. Canada continues to be the freest economy in the North America region, though it has dropped just below the cutoff for characterization as a "free" economy."
"he soundness of public finance has been notable, although government spending has been rising as a share of GDP. Along with open-market policies that support trade and dynamic investment, the efficient regulatory environment facilitates entrepreneurial activity and provides a high degree of certainty for business planning. "
{Which is now missing in the USA}
http://www.herita...vernment
Past performance is no guarantee of future performance. Canada plundered less and its performance reflected that.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Nov 04, 2012
"The regulatory framework is highly conducive to business formation and operation, with no minimum capital required for starting a company. The average cost of getting necessary licenses has been cut almost in half. Flexible labor regulations enhance employment and productivity growth. Inflation has been modest, but the government controls virtually all prices for health care services through its mandatory "single-payer" nationalized program."
http://www.herita...y/canada

US:
"Serious constitutional questions related to government-mandated health insurance have been under consideration in the courts. Corruption is a growing concern as the cronyism and economic rent-seeking associated with the growth of government have undermined institutional integrity."
http://www.herita...e-of-law
LED Guy
5 / 5 (1) Nov 04, 2012
The US is a culture of excess. We are all told that we need what we don't have. We get bombarded with this from the time we are kids and it is damned hard not to focus on the short term goals given what we are exposed to. Whatever happened to 20% down (minimum) for a mortgage. The banks decided to relax that and let people "buy" their houses with a lot less equity. Then the market turned around and everyone owed more than their houses were worth.

The decision to change lending requirements made the banks a lot of money (short term) and put a lot of people into houses that they couldn't normally afford (short term).

If everyone had paid attention to the long term and was actually greatful for what they had (not what they didn't), then they whole $1 trillion "stimulus" whould never have been necessary.

I grew up dirt poor. My sisters and I were on free school meals for years. I busted my butt, got a PhD (engineering) and make a reasonable 6 figure salary.
LED Guy
5 / 5 (1) Nov 04, 2012
I look at those who are where I was 40 years ago. I give my money directly to those who are working and paying attention to the long term.

I don't need mismanaged charities to do it for me. I definitely do not need an equally inefficient government beaurocracy to do it either. I don't get a say in that though.

The average US household income is $39,527 and they pay federal taxes of $10,406 (13.4%). My tax rate will be a lot higher than the average and I will pay more in taxes than the average household makes in a year. Probably about 25% this year (almost double the average tax rate).

I am not a part of the "1%", but I got where I am the old fashioned way: WORKING HARD AND SAVING. America needs to break its addiction to credt and pay more attention to what we have than what we don't!

I know what this article is about because I lived it and did something about it. Not easy - if it was easy everyone would have done it.

What happened to work hard for a better life?
antialias_physorg
1 / 5 (1) Nov 05, 2012
America needs to break its addiction to credt

Agreed. Buying stuff with money that's not yours isn't sensible (though I do think it's OK to have that option in a REAL emergency situation)

I currently pay 41% taxes on my income (which over here includes social security, pension, healthcare, nursing care insurance and unemployment insurance (all of which are mandatory)) with a 25% above average income. Effectively I have the lowest possible amount of income to juuuust have to pay the highest possible amount of taxes (as a percentage. 42% is the maximum tax rate).

And you know what? That's perfectly fine. I still have more than enough to carry to the bank every month.
Others (even some of my friends) don't have a job. And the money for them to survive has to come from somewhere. If I ever don#t have a job or fall sick I know that these systems will take care of me. That peace of mind is definitely worth it.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Nov 05, 2012
That peace of mind is definitely worth it.

Until you run out of other people's money.
Why should anyone in Germany work at a job if the govt will give them welfare?
It was nice working for a Swiss company in KSA, until KSA decided they were too expensive. Six weeks paid vacation is a great benefit, until the job disappears.
During my summer internship in Helsinki at VTT I noticed most didn't work too hard. Why should they strive for more responsibility, more pay, if the state was going to take 75% of it?
antialias_physorg
1 / 5 (1) Nov 05, 2012
What happened to work hard for a better life?

What ever happened to knowing what kind of life you actually need as opposed to fitting your expectations to the maximum available?

If you only ever work for a 'better life' you're missing out on life because you will never get there. Pick a level at which you are comfortable. If you haven't reached that yet then strive for it. 'More is better' isn't a universal truth.

As the greeks say: Gnothi seauton (know thyself)
(you can find similar stuff in many philosophies - right down to "the art of war")

Live within your means (and by 'within' I mean somewhat below your means. That way you'll always have something to fall back on when unexpected stuff happens). It's also way less stressful than going full tilt for the rat race.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Nov 05, 2012
The banks decided to relax that and let people "buy" their houses with a lot less equity.

They just did not 'decide' to do this. They were incentivized by the federal govt. The federal govt, through Freddie and Fannie would buy those bad mortgages, no questions asked as per democrats Barney Frank in '92 to push CRA.
As we see, govts think they can violate natural economic laws, but they can't and the taxpayers are always stuck with aftermath.
antialias_physorg
3 / 5 (2) Nov 05, 2012
Why should anyone in Germany work at a job if the govt will give them welfare?

I have been out of a job in my life. The reason why I didn't remain on welfare was: I don't like to live off of other people (I actually asked them NOT to pay me welfare because I had some savings and was confident of getting a job shortly. But bizarrely refusing unemployment benfits isn't bureaucratically possible)

And as surprising as that may seem to you - everyone I have ever spoken to that was out of a job has a similar attitude.
Yes - there may be the occasional parasites but those are few and far between. Society can survive the occasional freeloader (for the tax breaks - i.e. damage to society - a CEO gets you could feed a lot of freeloaders. CEOs are more of a problem than welfare parasites).

Plus: Living on welfare isn't easy if you have no savings. So there is definitely enough incentive to go looking for a job (If you don't go looking for a job they will cut your welfare)
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Nov 05, 2012
Pick a level at which you are comfortable.

All progress, innovations have been when people are NOT comfortable. NOT satisfied.
Attitudes like this lead to the end of your people and your society.

How do Germans like subsidizing the Greeks for their comfort levels?
antialias_physorg
3.7 / 5 (3) Nov 05, 2012
How do Germans like subsidizing the Greeks for their comfort levels?

Depends on how you look at it. Do we like giving money to a known corrupt government that will just embezzle the funds? Not so much.
Do we think giving money to a people that has fallen on hard times is OK? Yes

As with unemployment benefits for individuals there are very similar conditions to handing out money to countries.

1) You have to at least try to pay it back in the future (so no freebie).
2) You have to make sure that you live within your means (which is why there are demands for austerity measures and fiscal oversight.)
3) The tax-evasion mentality prevalent in Greece has to stop.

All progress, innovations have been when people are NOT comfortable.

Yep. Because engineers are lazy - and they will work their asses off to make life easier (go figure).
Innovations are, however, never made by people who are in it for the money

ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Nov 05, 2012
"Progress is the product of human agency. Things get better because we make them better. Things go wrong when we get too comfortable, when we fail to take risks or seize opportunities.
Susan Rice, Stanford University Commencement, 2010"

Nice quote. Too bad she lied about Libya instead of resigning.

The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man.
George Bernard Shaw

All progress is based upon a universal innate desire on the part of every organism to live beyond its income.
Samuel Butler, Notebooks, 1912

Universal, innate desire? This is why socialism always fails. It fails to acknowledge innate human desires.
VendicarD
not rated yet Nov 05, 2012
This is Libertarian progress according to RyggTard and the Libertarian economists writing for the Randite/Libertarian propaganda industry.

"It is almost exactly 12 months since I last visited Dolo - a shabby but relatively quiet little town near the border with Ethiopia, which was then swamped with civilians fleeing the famine zones.

Today, at first glance, not much seems to have changed. Still lots of men with guns, a bone-dry countryside, hundreds of threadbare makeshift tents, and - just as we drove into a UN camp - the familiar sight of weary new arrivals squatting in the dirt. Some 3,000 people are still coming here each month." - Somalia 2012
VendicarD
5 / 5 (1) Nov 05, 2012
Is this why Randite Economics has bankrupted America?

"All progress is based upon a universal innate desire on the part of every organism to live beyond its income." - RyggTard
VendicarD
5 / 5 (1) Nov 05, 2012
Commenting from Fantasy Planet Conservadopia...

"Universal, innate desire? This is why socialism always fails." - Ryggtard

The reality of course, is that Socialism rules the world, and those nations like America and the U.K. who have bucked the trend are now bankrupt and in rapid decline, unable to compete against the socialist nations.
VendicarD
not rated yet Nov 05, 2012
How do you like supporting your local mechanic when your car fails to start?

"How do Germans like subsidizing the Greeks for their comfort levels?" - RyggTard
VendicarD
not rated yet Nov 05, 2012
Probably because Germans don't suffer from the same lazy ideology that Randites like you suffer from.

You can't conceive of anyone working for the benefit of society because greed is your only motivation.

"Why should anyone in Germany work at a job if the govt will give them welfare?" - RyggTard
antialias_physorg
3 / 5 (2) Nov 05, 2012
Things get better because we make them better.

I actually agree - but wanting to change something has nothing to do with the level of comfort you set for your own life. Was the invention of the car or the airplane or the moon rocket (or anything else you care to name) depend on people not having the living standard they wanted?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Nov 05, 2012
Was the invention of the car or the airplane or the moon rocket (or anything else you care to name) depend on people not having the living standard they wanted?


Yes.
Tesla is a notable example.
antialias_physorg
3 / 5 (2) Nov 05, 2012
And you think Tesla would have sat on his behind otherwise? You know precious little about how engineers (and scientists) tick.
That's not really your fault, though.

People with less intelligence can never put themselves in place of people with more intelligence. (you can think down a level with some success - but thinking up a level is impossible - otherwise you'd be able to make yourself more intelligent than you are)
lengould100
5 / 5 (2) Nov 05, 2012
The banks decided to relax that and let people "buy" their houses with a lot less equity.

They just did not 'decide' to do this. They were incentivized by the federal govt. The federal govt, through Freddie and Fannie would buy those bad mortgages, no questions asked as per democrats Barney Frank in '92 to push CRA.
As we see, govts think they can violate natural economic laws, but they can't and the taxpayers are always stuck with aftermath.

Not the real problem, Rygg, as I'm sure you know. The '92 changes in rules to Fannie and Freddie, which relaxed cash down payment rules, were NOT a serious problem. The republican-written and sponsored bill which a) allowed (Citibank and others) to enter all sorts of other financial "industries" (insurance, underwriting, etc.) and which contained explicit wording along the lines "The SEC shall make no effort to oversee derivative trading or to investigate suspected fraud in derivative trading even when tipped off to it
lengould100
5 / 5 (4) Nov 05, 2012
In 1982, in Canada, I purchased a new house with only 5% cash down payment, yet the mortgage was still insured by CMHC (Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation, Canada's equivalent to Fannie and Freddie). As a great many other Canadians did. Yet in the 2008 meltdown when a great long list of banks worldwide failed or needed bailouts to avoid it, not a single Canadian bank had any difficulty. The only one affected at all was CIBC, only a relatively small Canadian bank, which was holding about 350 million in mortgage derivatives paper. The 350 million amounted to only about 1/4 of their yearly profit, and they absorbed the loss themselves.

Result? Canada had no problem during meltdown, though the deep recession in US economy has hurt our exports, thus causing a minor downturn here. No home repossession here at all. No drop in house prices or in real estate market activity.

Reason? Cdn govt. never relaxed tight regulation of banking industry.
lengould100
5 / 5 (2) Nov 05, 2012
I also note that the Cdn Conservative government joined willingly in the temporary financing of General Motors right alongside the Obama administration, providing over 10% of the loan funds, in order to keep Canadians working in GM's Canadian operations. There was no other LOGICAL option, regardless of what the campaigning republicans have been telling everyone.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Nov 05, 2012
There was no other LOGICAL option,

Of course there was, follow the law.
But then the UAW would have been in trouble and the first thing any socialist govt must do is protect the unions.

And you think Tesla would have sat on his behind otherwise?

Yes. He moved to the US to earn money an live well. Which he did.

Being creative and innovative don't matter much if you are not earning the money you need to get what you want.

"Hey, Barney Frank: The Government Did Cause the Housing Crisis"
"At first, this quota was 30%; that is, of all the loans they bought, 30% had to be made to people at or below the median income in their communities."
http://www.theatl.../249903/
lengould100
not rated yet Nov 05, 2012
Yeah sure, Rygg. You would think that a bankruptcy of the worlds largest automaker which simply pitched its assets into the hands of a group of financial scavengers, resulting in perhaps 75% less auto manufacturing employment in N. America, would be a logical option. The results of the approach used were highly acceptable for all concerned, from municipal and state tax bases to currency stability due to reduced imports from Asia.

The result of your option would be gruesome, at minimum.
lengould100
5 / 5 (2) Nov 05, 2012
Yes. He [Tesla} moved to the US to earn money an live well. Which he did.
Well, that's what he was hoping for, based on lies such as yours. However, if you did any reading you would know that he died a poor and bitter man, p.o'ed at american vulture capitalism.

Y'know, you'd do well to investigate the comparison of US innovation, invention, genuine useful research, etc. with some other countries (per capita) like Germany or Canada. I can tell you, you would REALLY piss off Prime Minister Harper of Canada if you called him a socialist.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (5) Nov 05, 2012
died a poor and bitter man,

But he LIVED quite high when he could. Living in the Waldorf Astoria.
REALLY piss off Prime Minister Harper of Canada if you called him a socialist.

Socialism is as socialism does. Hayek dedicated the Road to Serfdom to socialists of all parties. Has Harper dared end socialist medicine?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (5) Nov 05, 2012
worlds largest automaker which simply pitched its assets into the hands of a group of financial scavengers, resulting in perhaps 75% less auto manufacturing employment in N. America,


Is that not what happened? Olds, Saturn and Potiac are no more.
BTW, companies go bankrupt all the time and may or may not go out of business.
Better to let the govt and bad GM and Chrysler management continue than to end the 'rubber rooms' and improve efficiency?
Isn't Toyota the top auto maker now doing quite well without union contracts?

The result of your option would be gruesome, at minimum.

It WAS to property rights, bondholders, dealers who were forced out of business, but NOT to politically connected unions.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (5) Nov 05, 2012
Tesla followed Anti world view selling his patents and spending his money living the high life. Tesla's legacy is Westinghouse and a lab 'toy'.
Edison, retained his patents and built General Electric.
To each their own, but in Anti's Utopia, neither Edison nor Westinghouse could have built their companies and profited themselves or the millions who worked for them and purchased their products.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Nov 05, 2012
"Germany developed its characteristic system of cartels. The cartels charged the domestic consumers high prices and sold cheaper abroad. What the worker gained from labor legislation and union wages was absorbed by higher prices. The government and the trade-union leaders boasted of the apparent success of their policies: the workers received higher MONEY wages. But REAL wages did not rise more than the marginal productivity of labor. Only a few observers saw through all this. They failed to recognize that the whole process demonstrated the futility of coercive government and union interference with the conditions of labor.

--Ludwig von Mises. Omnipotent Government"
It wasn't a futile effort for increasing the power of the govt.
CarolynKay
5 / 5 (1) Nov 11, 2012
What's the excuse for the captains of industry who, through their short-term profit orientation, are destroying the very middle class that buys their products? They're fouling their own nests.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (2) Nov 11, 2012
What's the excuse for the captains of industry who, through their short-term profit orientation, are destroying the very middle class that buys their products? They're fouling their own nests.

Who are these captains of industry?
BTW, ever wonder what motivates short term orientation? You do know that all public companies must file reports to the SEC 4 times a year and most companies must file taxes every quarter with the IRS.
This overhead does cost money and helps to limit competition.