The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Intended for constructive conversations. Exhibits of polarizing tribalism will be deleted.
Riggerjack
Posts: 2667
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 3:09 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by Riggerjack » Thu Jun 27, 2019 2:16 pm

@ bigato

First, I have to say, your English has greatly improved! I am very impressed.
Obviously it is cheaper to apply machines to a lot of repetitive labour and computers to even intelectual labours. You need less humans for that, so whoever owns the machines concentrates the power and resources. Scale it up and you quickly end up with a portion of people who have way more than they would ever be able to spend. Given limited resources since we are on a finite planet, that also means that a much bigger percentage of the population will be barely scrapping by, or actually struggling to survive. Is that the world we want to live in? Will it even be a safe place? Do you enjoy seeing other humans suffer because they don't happen to be born with a brain good enough for being a programmer? Should the rest of personalities become entrepreneurs? Is that fair to human nature? Or maybe the rest should become self-sufficient farmers? Except that billionaires are buying vast parcels of land that they will never be able to use and putting armed guards to guarantee people won't trespass.

It is an economics problem really.
Is it an economic problem, really? That there will be more billionaires? All these people with more money than they could possibly spend, kinda like today.

Today, we have billionaires, with way more money than they could spend, so they do what most people with too much money do, they invest.

Who cares if the same guy who owns a significant portion of Tesla also owns a significant portion of a thousand other companies? The companies still do whatever they were going to do, whoever owns them.

Yeah, he has more money, don't motivate him to ruin your life, he is abnormally capable of it. But so is the crackhead on the corner. The lesson I draw is to try not to motivate others to mess with me, not that rich people are evil.

So how is a future with more megarich a problem, again?

7Wannabe5
Posts: 5120
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Fri Jun 28, 2019 10:07 am

Apologize if it seems like I was being disagreeable or distracted above. I am somewhat obsessed with the definition of the concepts of "innovation" and also "complexity", because they seem subject to some kind of work around in almost all of the new-new non-fiction on important topics. "Efficiency" and "sustainability" are much easier for me to get a grasp on so long as terms and boundaries are clearly defined.

Campitor
Posts: 861
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:49 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by Campitor » Fri Jun 28, 2019 12:46 pm

daylen wrote:
Thu Jun 27, 2019 8:47 am
There is evidence that plasticity can extend far beyond that time period, but for what? This circles back around to the discussion about how certain human features like creativity are distributed by a power law in the population...The only thing that doesn't really seem to change is how our minds work and subject-predicate-object logic. Not everything neatly fits into the pervasive cause-effect paradigm and gaps are forever present.
I guess the pertinent question would be: are humans capable of reprogramming themselves out of envy and focusing instead on actionable positive steps within their own control?

7Wannabe5
Posts: 5120
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Fri Jun 28, 2019 1:17 pm

Might be easier to go sideways emotionally from envy to admiration. For instance, I admire Claude Shannon, but I don't admire John D. Rockefeller, and I know that a goodly amount of money flowed towards Claude Shannon due to his highly innovative work, and I know that a very large amount of money flowed towards John D. Rockefeller due in some part to underhanded thug-like behavior, but also some high level organizational talent. So, I don't envy John D. Rockefeller his wealth and all that it bought him, because it was just like pretty frosting on a cake of turd laced with rank poison of religious hypocrisy. OTOH, the description in the biography I read of the lifestyle of Claude Shannon and his second wife and their family would be very close to my ideal, so I would choose his behavior (or maybe that of his second wife, because I am not a genius) as my model rather than that of John D. Rockefeller.

I think this sort of simple analysis would help most people work through their issues of envy related to wealth alone.

Campitor
Posts: 861
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:49 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by Campitor » Fri Jun 28, 2019 1:21 pm

Riggerjack wrote:
Thu Jun 27, 2019 2:16 pm
So how is a future with more megarich a problem, again?
Like you, I personally don't see it as much of a problem and I'm struggling with the logic employed by those who do. In my opinion, if someone believes the same thing within a bullet item below, they are being intellectually inconsistent and dishonest.
  • Government can print as much money as they want in order to manipulate economy which is good. Corporations are evil because they have too much money which they use to manipulate the economy.
  • Government collecting tons of money from X via implied force and giving to Y is good. Corporations collecting tons of money from X via a voluntary exchange and giving them Y is bad.
  • Mostly greedy and lustful people gravitate towards powerful positions in business. Mostly good people gravitate towards powerful positions in government.
  • CEOs make terrible decisions because they are not affected by the externalities caused by their actions. Government makes good decisions despite being immune to the externalities caused by their actions.
  • Corporations seizing land in order to control resources, which they will distribute later, and surrounding it with armed guards is bad. Government seizing land in order to control resources, which they will distribute later, and surrounding it with armed guards is good.
  • Having large corporations and billionaires controlling so much money is bad because no single person or corporation should have that kind of power. Having government control so much money is good despite their monopoly on power.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 5120
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Fri Jun 28, 2019 2:22 pm

How about the debate concerning the relative morality of big business vs. big government is just a distraction from the problems inherent in "big" of any flavor? Not that "big" itself is necessarily all bad, but it is very different than "small."

For example, most everybody spends or wastes a lot of time thinking about national politics, and then bitch about their lack of influence, but very few people ever attend the monthly meeting of their local water board. I think anybody who has been involved in local politics/government and/or run their own small business might hold different perspective.

I would also note for the record that one of my best friends is a multi-millionaire, so it's not like I think wealthy people are any better or worse than anybody else. A lot of them are just good at managing money, kind of like a kid playing with a train set that interests him.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 5120
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Fri Jun 28, 2019 3:12 pm

I would also note that I have observed that the way my uber-wealthy friend manages his charitable giving is very different than the way in which he manages his investments and business. He pretty much just handed the responsibility for spending all the money his foundation has to spend each year in order to maximize his tax benefit to his right hand woman (her desk is literally to the right of the door to his office), who also has to do a lot of other things that really aren't her job, like drive him to his doctor appointments. But, he would never in a million years let her decide on his next investment. I considered shaking him down for a donation to the charity for which my DD28 is on the board, but I really sort of loathe engaging in anything like networking. OTOH, I did steal all the ripe strawberries from his garden, because all I have is alpine, and now he is like "Where are those sour cherries you said you would bring me?" every time I see him.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 5120
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Fri Jun 28, 2019 3:27 pm

A more positive note about Rockefeller is that he was extremely frugal. One moral quandary I can't wrap my mind around is the fact that one of his prime motivations for strong-arming all the Pennsylvania farmers with a wells on their land out of business was that he saw the wastefulness of selling oil at the extremely low price that the competition between many small players (in an environment where today's many uses for oil had not yet been developed) resulted in. So, on some level his clearly illegal, thug-like, towards-monopoly behaviors probably did temporarily save some small share of natural resources. Roughly analogous to the guy who decides it's his job to guard and portion out the kegs at a frat party, even if he has to crack some heads in the process.

daylen
Posts: 1163
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 4:17 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by daylen » Fri Jun 28, 2019 5:54 pm

Campitor wrote:
Fri Jun 28, 2019 12:46 pm
are humans capable of reprogramming themselves out of envy and focusing instead on actionable positive steps within their own control?
There is no binary answer or perhaps no answer at all. Attention/time/energy required varies with the agent. The unchanging mind that I refer to is like a set of unconscious programs that are hard/impossible to reprogram. These programs/impulses are emergent from the underlying genome or morphology, and program triggers can be encoded into conditions. The conditions can either be replaced with different programs via learning or avoided. I have been developing a holarchical framework that links mathematics, phenomenology, evolution, socialization, typology, language, and complexity. Developing these links in detail will probably be a lifelong hobby for me.

Envy is not the only condition and may not even be the most prominent. These gaps in our conscious experience are happening almost continuously along with brief interruptions or transitions. How these gaps are distributed links to the assumptions we make and influences what feels "normal" or "common". Control is only possible by constructing a system of alerts from conditions. We track dimensionless ratios between quantities, not the quantities themselves.

So one point I am trying to make is that not everyone has the same "focus", "actions", "positives", or "steps", and that these differences are significant to every waking moment of our lives. All political disagreement and misunderstanding can be thought to emerge from what the ratio between genetic and cultural selection is assumed to be. Do we let our genes guide us or do we use memes to condition or avoid them.


Campitor
Posts: 861
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:49 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by Campitor » Sun Jun 30, 2019 2:14 pm

It is an incomplete discussion to only point to income inequality without looking at a complete economic picture of the United States. A single site or report can never encapsulate all the vectors that apply pressure to income inequality. And any talk of income inequality needs to include a discussion on why we need to have UBI or an increase in forced income redistribution when the metrics regarding poverty and standard of living shows that most Americans are living better than they have in the past and that we enjoy a standard of living better than 90% of the world's population.

https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2 ... mmigrants/

The US is the largest recipient of immigration in the world. Our largest immigration pool comes from Mexico of which 25% are here illegally. The constant influx of unskilled workers is going to affect poverty statistics which I'd like to point out is at 12.3% despite the constant wave of immigration from poor nations; this would indicate that poor immigrants are able to rise above poverty because of the advantages available in this country. If this wasn't the case, then poverty rates would be increasing instead of decreasing. And this also indicates that the individuals had the capacity to generate income but the systems of their former countries were incapable of providing the network for income escalation. People come here to make money and they are able to do so because of the economic infrastructure we have. And when discussing income inequality notice how absent the income thresholds are. To be in the top 15% in income only requires earning 100k a year or more - very doable for a 2 person household (being married is a key factor).

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Affluen ... ted_States:
Two income-earner households are more common among the top quintile of households than the general population: 2006 U.S. Census Bureau data indicates that over three quarters, 76%, of households in the top quintile, with annual incomes exceeding $91,200, had two or more income earners compared to just 42% among the general population and a small minority in the bottom three quintiles. As a result, much of the rising income inequity between the upper and lower percentiles can be explained through the increasing percentage of households with two or more incomes.
https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2 ... ng-adults/:
In the past 10 years, the share of U.S. adults living without a spouse or partner has climbed to 42%, up from 39% in 2007, when the Census Bureau began collecting detailed data on cohabitation.

Divorce has likely not contributed to the growing share of unpartnered adults over this short period. Though divorce statistics are complicated, many argue that the divorce rate has generally been stable or falling since the 1980s.

This trend has important implications for the economic well-being of U.S. adults, as research has shown the financial benefits of marriage and cohabitation. The median household income (adjusted for household size) for partnered adults, either married or cohabiting, is $86,000. By contrast, the median household income for unpartnered adults is roughly $61,000. In addition, unpartnered adults are about twice as likely as partnered adults to be living in poverty (17% versus 7%).
https://singlemotherguide.com/single-mother-statistics/:
Single mothers are much more likely to be poor than married couples. The poverty rate for single-mother families in 2017 was 34%, nearly five times more than the rate (6%) for married-couple families.

Among children living with mother only, 40% lived in poverty. In contrast, only 12% of children in two parent families were counted as poor.
There are many factors affecting income inequality and putting the blame only on the rich is a half-truth. The stats above are only a small slice of what is behind the inequality. And beware stats that use median instead of averages and visa-versa - both get switched out depending on which one is more beneficial to the side doing the arguing.

Campitor
Posts: 861
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:49 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by Campitor » Sun Jun 30, 2019 2:35 pm

daylen wrote:
Fri Jun 28, 2019 5:54 pm
So one point I am trying to make is that not everyone has the same "focus", "actions", "positives", or "steps", and that these differences are significant to every waking moment of our lives. All political disagreement and misunderstanding can be thought to emerge from what the ratio between genetic and cultural selection is assumed to be. Do we let our genes guide us or do we use memes to condition or avoid them.
I believe that our genetic programming is extremely hard to subvert but it can be channeled. Someone may anger your enough that you want to punch them in the face, it's very hard to stop that "emotion" from existing because of genetic programming , that anger however can be redirected to a punching bag. We don't have to be victims to our urges - we can channel them to positive avenues - this part of the OS is within our control.

The anger the poor feel towards the rich would be better directed to actions within their sphere of control such as skill and knowledge acquisition or perhaps working 2 jobs to elevate their standard of living; this positive redirection is certainly within their control. Hating on the rich and waiting for a handout has never made anyone rich.

bigato
Posts: 2126
Joined: Sat Mar 05, 2011 12:43 pm

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by bigato » Sun Jun 30, 2019 2:38 pm

Interesting how you switch from pointing flaws in data methodology to "I believe that..."

daylen
Posts: 1163
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 4:17 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by daylen » Sun Jun 30, 2019 2:45 pm

I haven't said anything about the rich or UBI, and I just said that our genetic coding can be conditioned. Clearly you are missing my point that control is mostly an illusion.

Campitor
Posts: 861
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:49 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by Campitor » Sun Jun 30, 2019 2:45 pm

7Wannabe5 wrote:
Fri Jun 28, 2019 1:17 pm
Might be easier to go sideways emotionally from envy to admiration. For instance, I admire Claude Shannon, but I don't admire John D. Rockefeller, and I know that a goodly amount of money flowed towards Claude Shannon due to his highly innovative work, and I know that a very large amount of money flowed towards John D. Rockefeller due in some part to underhanded thug-like behavior...
Shannon and Rockefeller are consequences of the same framework that allows either to exists. We can't have Shannons without producing Rockefellers anymore than we can have honey producing insects without some having stingers. The systems that allow a Shannon, Marie Curie, and Louis Pasteur to exist are the same that allow Rockefeller, Fritz Haber, and Robert Koch to exist - to eliminate the framework is to eliminate all of them. The goal is to develop a framework where Marie Curie is the better incentive and not so much Fritz Haber.
Last edited by Campitor on Sun Jun 30, 2019 3:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Campitor
Posts: 861
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:49 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by Campitor » Sun Jun 30, 2019 3:18 pm

bigato wrote:
Sun Jun 30, 2019 2:38 pm
Interesting how you switch from pointing flaws in data methodology to "I believe that..."
The comparative smallness of what we know today as gravitational effects is not a conclusive reason for ignoring the principle of general relativity in theoretical investigations of a fundamental character. In other words, I do not believe that it is justifiable to ask: What would physics look like without gravitation? - Albert Einstein

We believe in the possibility of a theory which is able to give a complete description of reality, the laws of which establish relations between the things themselves and not merely between their probabilities ... God does not play dice. - Albert Einstein

You believe in the God who plays dice, and I in complete law and order in a world that objectively exists, and which I, in a wildly speculative way, am trying to capture - Albert Einstein

@bigato
  1. That I believe something doesn't mean it's an uniformed belief unsupported by honest data. It's possible to fudge data on both sides via deliberate selection and/or exclusion of data and metrics. For example, the poverty rate for blacks is 9.9% in the US and it's half of that for whites. However since there are more whites than blacks in the population, there are almost 3 poor whites for every black person. So a war on poverty means redirecting resources to more white people than black people in the US. It would be dishonest of me to talk about the black poverty rate without mentioning the absolute number of white people in poverty just as it would be dishonest of me to point out the absolute number of white people in poverty without talking about how black poverty percentages are higher.
  2. Thanks for the implied ad-hominem. I believe you to be a smart man debating your view point honestly - don't spoil it with an ad-hominem no matter how polite it may be.
Last edited by Campitor on Sun Jun 30, 2019 3:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Campitor
Posts: 861
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:49 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by Campitor » Sun Jun 30, 2019 3:22 pm

daylen wrote:
Sun Jun 30, 2019 2:45 pm
I haven't said anything about the rich or UBI, and I just said that our genetic coding can be conditioned. Clearly you are missing my point that control is mostly an illusion.
I don't believe control is an illusion otherwise we'd still be sophisticated monkeys beating each other with sticks. I'm framing my argument within the UBI context because we're in a thread about UBI.

daylen
Posts: 1163
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 4:17 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by daylen » Sun Jun 30, 2019 3:42 pm

From my perspective, we still are sophisticated monkeys beating each other with memes. Statistics, optimization, and so forth are what we resort to when we want to justify what we were programmed to unconsciously do.

bigato
Posts: 2126
Joined: Sat Mar 05, 2011 12:43 pm

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by bigato » Sun Jun 30, 2019 3:47 pm

Campitor: have you considered the possibility that you may be missing the point sometimes? Like, when a big, crowdsourced wikipedia page full of links to peer-reviewed studies, documentaries and data is dismissed as being "a single source", do you think there is the possibility that you may be slightly biased here? I get it you are the success example of an immigrant who succeeded, but do you think it may be possible that you have survivor bias? Also, are you really comparing your opinion to Einstein's?

Campitor
Posts: 861
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:49 am

Re: The benefits of a basic income // much higher min wage

Post by Campitor » Sun Jun 30, 2019 4:19 pm

bigato wrote:
Sun Jun 30, 2019 3:47 pm
Campitor: have you considered the possibility that you may be missing the point sometimes? Like, when a big, crowdsourced wikipedia page full of links to peer-reviewed studies, documentaries and data is dismissed as being "a single source", do you think there is the possibility that you may be slightly biased here? I get it you are the success example of an immigrant who succeeded, but do you think it may be possible that you have survivor bias?
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1420798/:
So we have little evidence on the effectiveness of peer review, but we have considerable evidence on its defects. In addition to being poor at detecting gross defects and almost useless for detecting fraud it is slow, expensive, profligate of academic time, highly subjective, something of a lottery, prone to bias, and easily abused.
I'm not dismissing the fact that I may be biased. That a source is an amalgamation of peer-reviewed studies doesn't mean the data is accurate, has been reviewed accurately, or hasn't been peer reviewed by those with similar bias. And it's possible that I have survivor bias but considering that the US is the richest country on earth with a very high standard of living for most of its citizens, and it's still the highest immigration destination in the world, that means the that likelihood of survival is very high; in other words my success isn't a fluke. I'm not arguing my point because I think the rich need protecting, I'm arguing my points because I believe I'm protecting the poor. The rich are a necessary "evil" and without them our tax revenues will drop which will affect those below the poverty line the most; I don't think the rich are anymore evil than the average citizen.

I'll close with a quote from the French economist Frédéric Bastiat:

“There is only one difference between a bad economist and a good one: the bad economist confines himself to the visible effect; the good economist takes into account both the effect that can be seen and those effects that must be foreseen.”

*** Edit ***
Also, are you really comparing your opinion to Einstein's?
No - just highlighting the fact that smart men have beliefs which are informed by examination of data and research. I wouldn't put myself anywhere near Einstein but I can try to emulate his logic and his habit of examination and research. The moral being - be more like Einstein - do the research and examine the data dispassionately. If the data supports your view then I'll change my mind. But income, wealth, and the associated statistics are co opted by bias and politics on both sides (for and against redistribution) so they have to be examined carefully and independently.
Last edited by Campitor on Sun Jun 30, 2019 7:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Post Reply