Jump to content
House Price Crash Forum
LJAR

"you" Are The Problem

Recommended Posts

In reply to someone blaming devastation of local communities on corporations for outsourcing jobs.

Anything can be related to anything else in some way. If you drink anti-freeze you will die. That doesn't mean that anti-freeze causes death if you put it in the radiator. If, when you die, you knock over a porcelain figurine, that doesn't mean that anti-freeze is dangerous to figurines. A particular profit caused a particular person to be devastated but other people are helped. Profit is not linked intrinsically to devastation. It can, indeed, cause it but it can also cause the opposite.

(my note - consider the benefit the new factory brings to chinese workers, people who are most likely much poorer than those on benefits in the UK)

Your devastation is causing you to blame someone, anyone, except yourself. Your society set up a system that lead to this situation. If the factory owner didn't move to China some other factory would and undercut his prices, so badly that he would have to close down anyway. This situation has been forecast for years but your society chose to ignore it. In other words you chose to ignore it. Your society could have prevented this situation in many ways years ago but chose not to.

Your society is not someone else, it is the collective you. You buy the products of this factory in China. You refuse to buy home built products because they are more expensive. You cause the pollution in china. You are blaming the factory owner for your actions. That is like blaming the drug dealer for your habit.

The first step to fixing the problem is to identify its source and that is YOU.

We have the power to do something about our problems, but all we end up doing is blaming someone else and hoping some other person will sort it out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In reply to someone blaming devastation of local communities on corporations for outsourcing jobs.

We have the power to do something about our problems, but all we end up doing is blaming someone else and hoping some other person will sort it out.

So you're saying that the problem is in fact the entire capitalist system?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And the media is a perfect reflection of our collective denial.

It's a bit simplistic to use the analogies that he's drawn since any system is made up of many layers and complex interactions and cause-effect relationships.

Should a new born baby or 2 year old be to blame if its ability to think clearly and make decisions that might affect its future be compromised by being injected with mercury-laden vaccines?

Should the 5 year old be blamed for the appalling (non) education it will receive and the deception it will undergo in its school life?

These are just a few deeper questions that the article should have addressed, had it been balanced and incisive enough to address the (dare I say it) big picture.

We are born into a system of merciless slavery. Our tax farm happens to be slightly more humane than the ones in the orient, yet we have lost sight of the wood for the trees and we have been conditioned to ignore the fundamentals.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No, because every system is capitalist in its way, it is just a question of who controls the capital.

At the moment it is not capitalism that is the problem - it is corporatism ie big corporations can lean on governments to give them special privileges.

As long as people get some privileges they don't care, but add them all up and they cause everyone a lot of damage.

We could vote in a way to sort this out, but we don't, because people can't or wont see that the problem is them and all their little demands at the expense of someone else.

It is the same old thing of people voting for higher spending and lower taxes. With business it is more local and cheaper goods.

These two things are not compatible - we have to choose one or the other, but we don't want to so we just throw our toys out of the pram and blame someone else.

Edit - the fundamental point is that we have to make choices, but instead we kick the can down the road until the choice is made for us, then we complain like spoiled children.

Edited by LJAR

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No, because every system is capitalist in its way, it is just a question of who controls the capital.

At the moment it is not capitalism that is the problem - it is corporatism ie big corporations can lean on governments to give them special privileges.

As long as people get some privileges they don't care, but add them all up and they cause everyone a lot of damage.

We could vote in a way to sort this out, but we don't, because people can't or wont see that the problem is them and all their little demands at the expense of someone else.

It is the same old thing of people voting for higher spending and lower taxes. With business it is more local and cheaper goods.

These two things are not compatible - we have to choose one or the other, but we don't want to so we just throw our toys out of the pram and blame someone else.

Edit - the fundamental point is that we have to make choices, but instead we kick the can down the road until the choice is made for us, then we complain like spoiled children.

But whoever we vote for, the corporations always win. We can't vote them out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But whoever we vote for, the corporations always win. We can't vote them out.

Of course you can't.

The voting system is run by the largest most monopolistic, bureaucratic corporation with highly questionable operating ethics and the highest rate of both customer and employee mortality - it's called the state.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem with that post is the definition of "your society".

The society of deomocratic voters doesn't get to spend much time in the company of Whitehall and Threadneedle Street.

I also guarantee that whichever party you voted for, even perhaps extreme minority parties, despite their manifesto pledges. You would still have trident going ahead, we wouldn't pull out of Afghanistan immediately and EU integration would not be repealed.

There's an inevitability about the big things that carries on regardless of the incumbent political party.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The thing is that there isn't any inevitability to it at all. If we voted for other parties they would get the message. Not immediately, voting at the ballot box is pretty rare so the feedback loop takes a long time.

But it is easy to decide to go to the local shops instead of the big supermarket. It is easy not to buy cheap imported knock offs, or at least ask for an alternative.

pilchardthecat exemplifies the point - we have abdicated responsibility for the consequences of our own decisions. The alternative is there, you have to be willing to pay for it, in money or in time that it takes to find it.

If you are not willing to spend the time or money, then don't be surprised when the option disappears.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So you're saying that the problem is in fact the entire capitalist system?

No. No system is responsible. The system is a construct of people. The people are responsible. Collectively they can do whatever they want, whether by vote, or purchase, or revolution. Some people, a very small minority, do take it upon themselves to do something and this group rules everyone else. Power belongs to the biggest collective. If you have ever tried to organise any group, whether it be a boy scouts pack, a church social, a tennis club or a political party you will encounter a fractiousness that is overwhelming. Most people are unable or unwilling to form a cohesive group and support their leader. It is this uncooperative nature of the general population, most particularly their enmity to their own leaders that keeps them enslaved.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In reply to someone blaming devastation of local communities on corporations for outsourcing jobs.

We have the power to do something about our problems, but all we end up doing is blaming someone else and hoping some other person will sort it out.

Who is this 'someone'?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No. No system is responsible. The system is a construct of people. The people are responsible. Collectively they can do whatever they want, whether by vote, or purchase, or revolution. Some people, a very small minority, do take it upon themselves to do something and this group rules everyone else. Power belongs to the biggest collective. If you have ever tried to organise any group, whether it be a boy scouts pack, a church social, a tennis club or a political party you will encounter a fractiousness that is overwhelming. Most people are unable or unwilling to form a cohesive group and support their leader. It is this uncooperative nature of the general population, most particularly their enmity to their own leaders that keeps them enslaved.

The system (whatever you want to call it) isn't a construct of everyone - it is a construct of a relative few and is enabled by everyone. It already exists, so we are born into it, we did not 'construct' it. Not everyone has the information available to fully judge that system for what it is and seek to change it - the information is blurred and obfuscated at every turn. The world is presented in a way that no other alternatives are available - it is 'the way the world works'. The system is protected by pretty much all money and all 'legitimate' force. The consequences of challenging the system in any real and meaningful way would be dire for the individual and disastrous for everyone else. The choice of 'revolution' in a single country is no more - the system is global, with global consequences.

Blaming ourselves for this could be interpreted as the classic reaction of the abused turning on themselves.

This is not a judgement on any particular type of system or politics, nor should it be interpreted as disagreement with responsibility for one's actions - but it is the way it is.

Edit to add:

P.S. The 'collective' in all its forms, whether you agree with them or not, has been relentlessly attacked over the past few decades.

Edited by shipbuilder

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ok then. I choose to buy the domestically owned and produced alternative.

Oh, wait, there isn't one.

So is the thing reversible? If it is, I can't do it

In many cases there is at least a western world produced alternative, but people choose not to buy them because they cost too much. Why buy a Festool cordless drill made in Germany for about £400 when you can get some Chinese thing for £30 from B&Q? The Festool will last forever and the Chinese one will be dead in 6 months, but we don't care. The consumer regards price above everything else, yet doesn't recognise the linkage between cheap tat and a standard of living that they want to continue with in the western world.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just wish people would stop blaming a group of special people who do bad stuff that they of course would never do. I think it's dishonest. I rather suspect that the great majority of people tailor their opinions about the rightness of the way of the World to their personal position in it.

It will take a quite mighty force of development for the species to overcome our fundamentally selfish, acquisitative and competitive nature; I don't know whether it's possible, but I do think that a great deal of the complaining or supporting that goes on is fundamentally dishonest.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The system (whatever you want to call it) isn't a construct of everyone - it is a construct of a relative few and is enabled by everyone. It already exists, so we are born into it, we did not 'construct' it. Not everyone has the information available to fully judge that system for what it is and seek to change it - the information is blurred and obfuscated at every turn. The world is presented in a way that no other alternatives are available - it is 'the way the world works'. The system is protected by pretty much all money and all 'legitimate' force. The consequences of challenging the system in any real and meaningful way would be dire for the individual and disastrous for everyone else. The choice of 'revolution' in a single country is no more - the system is global, with global consequences.

Blaming ourselves for this could be interpreted as the classic reaction of the abused turning on themselves.

This is not a judgement on any particular type of system or politics, nor should it be interpreted as disagreement with responsibility for one's actions - but it is the way it is.

Edit to add:

P.S. The 'collective' in all its forms, whether you agree with them or not, has been relentlessly attacked over the past few decades.

By "construct" I mean that a system does not exist of itself. It is "constructed" by the people in it. It is in a constant state of construction and can therefore be changed at any time simply by the people in it wanting it to change and taking action to change it. The quantity of action needed to change a system is inversely proportional to the number of people wanting the change. Large numbers of people need to take very little action, but they have to take that action. Talking about it won't cut the mustard. Simply voting against every incumbent would do!

We have to blame ourselves because there is no-one else to blame. If we lived in a dictatorship then we could blame the dictator but we do live in a democracy and we do vote. The vast majority of people continue to vote for leaders who have consistently failed. There are alternatives and if any alternative was considered better than a failure then the alternative would have a massive mandate to effect change and if that change was bad then he would face rejection and replacement until a leader was elected who could do the job. Unfortunately the vast majority of people prefer failure to an unknown change and therefore get failure consistently.

By electing leaders who fail, we create a convenient scapegoat and release ourselves from the responsibility and possible blame for failure.

Blaming an abuser will not change his actions. Only the abused can change the action. It is not about "blame" it is about change. Change will only occur when most of the people take personal responsibility for their own situation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think we underestimate the degree to which our world views are the product of prevailing fashions of thought.

At the moment we are in the dying days of the neo liberal version of capitalism- yet even as we stand in the ruins of that edifice those who support it still sing it's praises- in the face of overwhelming evidence that it's has blown up in our collective faces.

I agree it's pointless to blame individuals- what needs to be attacked are the conceptual foundations of their thinking.

Essentially the mess we are now in is the result of a rather simple narrative tale- so simple that it could be a childrens story;

Once upon a time there were a group of economists who belived that if you just left the market alone it would behave perfectly- it would be not too hot, not too cold, but always just right.

This simple narrative is the genesis of the cluster f*ck we now inhabit. Our collective failure to challenge this fairy tale is what led us here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Of course you can't.

The voting system is run by the largest most monopolistic, bureaucratic corporation with highly questionable operating ethics and the highest rate of both customer and employee mortality - it's called the state.

Indeed.

I didn't vote for Gordon Brown, and I don't know anyone who did. :ph34r:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Beggy pardon...but isnt the problem DEBT.

whoever has DEBT is in trouble.

thats most of us, and its certainly our Governments and our bankers.

THEY are in trouble.

Denninger does the calcs:

Here's the math.

This fiscal year (2010) we have approximately $13 trillion outstanding in debt (including "intergovernmental borrowing", that is, Social Security and Medicare.)

Our total debt service is projected (it's not quite over!) to be 4.63% of the budget, or about $165 billion. That's approximately 7% of revenues, incidentally.

That's an effective interest rate of about 1.27%.

Yes, 1.27%.

Now what happens if we take no more debt at all but rates normalize to 5%?

That would be $672 billion, or about $500 billion more than it is today. Incidentally, that's fifty-two percent of all (personal and corporate) income taxes, up from today's thirteen percent.

Of course the CBO says we will run about $1 trillion in deficits for the next ten years. Let's presume it's five years, and we'll give it the $1 trillion, although I think that's low - maybe by 25% or more.

So let's add $5 trillion to the total, for $18.5 trillion, and apply a 5% rate to it.

That comes to $925 billion, or dangerously close to all personal income taxes, which are $1.061 trillion.

Got it folks? All personal income taxes, or if you prefer all FICA and Medicare taxes, will go only to pay interest.

We won't get there. Before that day comes the world, which buys our debt as a "safe haven", will discern this math and cut us off. It is a certainty. Look at what happened with Greece, where literally within days short-term interest rates went to 10% - a rate that, were it to happen here, would cause The United States to blow up monetarily and politically right here and now.

Calculators cost less than $5 these days.

Ok, so you say, you'll just buy Gold. Lots of people are running that meme right now - using the fear of this very collapse to drive sales - to you. It won't matter; their promise of "safety" is empty. After the currency collapses and is replaced you'll have to change your gold into whatever comes next. You will either have to prove your cost basis (and pay capital gains tax) or have it declared as "zero" (in which case you just pay tax on all of it.) Either way, you won't protect your wealth with gold - the government will steal your wealth. Guaranteed.

You might buy currency or something somewhere outside the US. Won't matter. Repatriating it will be subject to tax. Same problem - the government will steal it.

(Remember, the premise here is that the whole reason this happens is that the government goes broke in the first instance!)

Ok, you say, you'll buy stocks. Really? How well will stocks do during the "transition"? Do you really think that when the bond market goes ape**** that the borrowing of corporations (It's only $10 trillion outstanding, after all!) will be undisturbed when that debt has to roll over? Oh yes, it does - all that debt has a term, and corporations have been reducing durations too - which means it will happen quickly.

What might be safe? Physical land sufficient to grow enough food to survive. After all, you can live on it. You might be able to sell it, but it has utility value - direct utility value. That's not a bad idea. But as an investment (that is, with the idea that you'll sell it in the new currency) you're likely to get a surprise again, since with interest rates rising dramatically the affordability on financed terms will go in the toilet too (this, incidentally, is why buying a house right now if you think you might need to sell it in the next 10 years is a really bad idea.) So a "bugout" where you can live? Good idea. But that's not very expensive if you have a sizable amount of wealth, and once you have it, you have it.

No, there is no way to stick your money in something (any something) and avoid the damage. No matter what sort of strategy you adopt your odds of success are 1 in 20 - maybe. As a betting man the bet is that you're going to lose the value of all financial assets, including precious metals, even physically-held ones, and if you're younger than 70 you will not die before Social Security and Medicare blow up too.

The only winning strategy is to prevent the catastrophe from happening!

Yes, its US alright...US that have debt and overborrowed....we have walked ourselves into a corner.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Either way, you won't protect your wealth with gold - the government will steal your wealth. Guaranteed.

I find the unfairness of a desperate government taking wealth away from people who have been careful (as against thieving financiers) to maintain stability in a society where many have been reckless (encouraged by the thieving financiers) quite literally painful.

It just 1 notch down from a war crime.

Good thread - revisits the mythical 'they' - like when an interviewed redundant factory worker asks what are 'they' going to do about my bills.

When pressed they never seem to be very clear about who 'they' are.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • 142 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.