….my thoughts are not clear. I don’t know what I am trying to say here….bear with me…please feel to add in what is missing….send ridicule and abuse if it is stupid…..here goes:
I will start with the old saw; ‘to a hammer everything looks like a nail.’ That basically means, that a one-trick-pony can only do the one trick regardless of the request. That means that a limited skilled person does not bring a lot of tools to the workshop nor the skills necessary to do anything with them. And I am seeing our governments acting like a bag of hammers.
How the hell does stimulating the economy (which can’t work long term anyway) do ANYTHING to cure a disease? Isn’t that a bit like taking a hammer to fix electronics or a knife to a gunfight? Honestly? A primitive shaman throwing pig entrails in to the air and chanting is at least focused on the patient. Trump/Trudeau is ranting and throwing money at corporations and ignoring the patients. I’d prefer the shaman if I was ill.
OK, OK. I know that giving away money is a nice gesture even if the money they are giving away is OURS in the first place. And I might even be convinced that some support for small business might be in order such as restaurants ORDERED to close. I get that. But, really…? Why give away the taxpayers moolah when all they have to do to achieve the same thing more equitably is to suspend interest payments? The banks lose cashflow but NOT their principal and they can tack on their greedy pound of flesh later. No money transfusions necessary. Well, not as much money anyway.
And, with that stupid massive and misdirected expenditure off the table, the government can then put that money to where it is really required: mfg’ing of medical supplies and accelerated development of a cure.
How is giving money to an airlines gonna help anyone but airlines pay CEOs extra bonuses and banks get their financing payments?
Trump wants ‘Mericans in church and at work by Easter. He ‘needs the money’ for the economy. He is an idiot, of course. The USA is well on course for being the hardest hit first world country and most damaged economy on the planet. Why? Because all their efforts at mitigating this problem have been directed to ‘fixing’ the economy and NOT fixing the actual citizens. Trump is just the stupidest hammer of the bunch but all countries thinking that subsidizing business or industry is a cure for anything are equally as idiotic.
“Dave! What about poor tenants who can’t pay their rent because Walmart laid them off?”
My first answer (probably wrong) is that $500 towards one month’s rent isn’t gonna do much of anything. The ‘giveaway’, if there is to be one, has to be at least at the family welfare level otherwise you are just throwing money away. Interest suspension floats all boats! Go all in or go back to the parliamentary cafeteria and attend a committee meeting.
This emphasis on ‘money-as-a-cure’ is not only stupid and ineffective, it exposes the essential impotence of government. They can’t DO anything! They can dish out money. They can extort some of that money back in taxes and fines. They can pass paper laws and they can and do pontificate and meet ad nauseam.
Viruses don’t care.
Viruses only care about finding new hosts. That’s it. Our efforts to redirect our attention from that very REAL problem by UNSUSTAINABLY stimulating the economy is an embarrassing admission that we are helpless in the face of a real and present danger and that we are led by imbeciles.
Imbeciles already awash in debt, dealing inequitably and promoting division and greed instead of community. These hammers are not only stupid, they are corrupt and evil.
Over to you:
Any critique of this blog is welcome save for the obvious ones where someone describes some poor doofus who was saved by a cheque for $500 or a story about some people who are happy with some rent abatement. Of course some money infusions are going to help individuals.
But when you keep everyone in society on the margins of financial well-being, a few hundred bucks at the right time will make only for great human-interest fodder for the media at the very most. Even the lucky recipient of $2000 will acknowledge that such a monetary gift does nothing for their cough and fever. “Gimme money’ is the new mantra of the masses but it won’t cure C-19.
One more thing: Trump/Trudeau wants the stock market to rebound. For him, the stock market is a political health indicator. The problem is that the stock market is NOT a nation’s overall health indicator. The market is an indicator of how the rich and elite are doing but it means nothing directly to Joe Sixpack. Joe can’t get toilet paper. He is not counting his Berkeshire Hathaway dividends.
So, my point: we have created a uni-dimensional government mindset. Money, money, money. Meet and spend money. Later, we meet and take money. Our governments have abandoned what used to be the greater realm of ‘government work’ and privatized as much as they could. Now that they have streamlined their function to just that of stealing from the poor and giving to the rich, their range of powers has been severely reduced. What can they do? Where are the government labs? Where is all the equipment? Where are all the doctors, nurses and medicines? Where is the leadership?
Damn! I don’t know how you acquire such perception on a gawdforsaken deserted island. You
should open a training school for financial gurus. Online, of course!
Maybe starting with the fact that Berkshire has to my knowledge never EVER paid dividends. Fwiw
Well, Aldo is right. BH doesn’t pay dividends. Never has. I was lazy writing that but you got my point. And, anyway, even tho BH doesn’t PAY dividends, most of their revenue is derived from dividend issuing holdings. Still, Aldo is right. I am no financial anything but the point that merely putting interest rates on hold while still allowing cashflow by way of principal payments keeps everything ticking without government so-called stimulus. Obama HAD to do Quantitative Easing back in 2008 because so much ‘junk assets’ had accumulated and the banking industry had run amok. And QE really is just a huge time bomb that will show up more and more as the people realize that QE is just another word for dilution. So this ‘stimulus’ crap is just making matters worse – not better. Think of it this way: The US is $29 Trillion in debt. By adding $2T-plus they have just indebted themselves more by approximately 7% . That is NOT just debt owed by Americans to Americans, it is government to government debt and the Chinese are the biggest creditors. And Trump is fighting with them all the time. What a genius of a businessman. Bottom line: increasing debt undermines making America great. It bankrupts America. But, even worse, none of that money is going to the right place.
i dont know about robbing the poor and giving to the rich, i think its the otherway around, at least in canada. 40% of canadians pay 0 net tax. (The top 10 percent pay 47.1 percent of income taxes and earn 33.1 percent of total income. Note: Families are the unit of analysis in the calculations. Source: The Fraser Institute’s Canadian Tax Simulator, 2017) Young people in this country is loosing the spirit of capitalism and feel entitled to everything they desire and when they can’t get it, they want the government to hand it to them.
As far as for Trump, Americans dropping dead on the street is just a number to him as long as the stock market holds up.
The Fraser Institute is run by folks with blinkers. Firstly, Canadians pay more for everything than anyone else. Taxes. Cell phones. Food. Our own fuel. (Maybe Switzerland is more expensive). So, my $20.00 bottle of Malbec is $US3.00 in Mendoza. $5.00 at Trader Joe’s. A gallon of gasoline in the US is now UNDER a dollar! The basic food basket of an American is half what we pay. We are gouged. And why? Because we got no choice. NOT because we are 100 miles further north than say Detroit or Bellingham. A basic ‘construct’ of American capitalism is that they will sell to their Canadian counterparts at retail and then the Canadians mark that up. Follow the supply line of Honda gensets and you will see that a HondaEu2000 is $700 something in Orgeon – and that is their retail. Same unit is $1400 Canadian in Campbell River. Why? Because the Canadian distributor buys RETAIL from the US supplier. But that is not my main point – neither is the fact that ‘Mericans deduct their mortgage payments from their taxes! Point: Basically the problem is NOT income tax. The problem is gouging and sales and other weird-laid-on taxes that drives a 25 cent avocado in Arizona to $3.00 by the time I look at it. Your basic lower-income employee pays way more in taxes by way of PST, GST, gas-tax and all that other crap and that amounts to a huge portion of their income. Income tax is not the biggy…the biggy is a death-by-thousand-taxes and mark-ups.
If $500. rent support from the BC government was all the support on offer then your point is well taken. The federal government is offering 107 billion in support to Canadian citizens, sending it to most levels of government, businesses large and tiny are included because nearly everyone has their hand out. Canada has seemingly become the nation of ‘’me too.’’ You are correct that giving out pots of money does not change many of the ills of our economy. This bailout might make Canadians more expectant of future handouts. Are we on the edge of having an overly dependent population upon government supports? Until Canada develops an economy that is not mainly dependent on consumer consumption what is the option to keep the consumers thriving: give people money. In the states cutting a government cheque to most America’s of $1200 was seem as the slippery slope to a “Guaranteed Income” and its handmaiden socialism. Canada seems to have developed a serf like economy that is one pay cheque away from the edge. The solution might be to build them housing, provide medical and dental care, public transit and give them money for life’s necessities. Turn the so called deplorables into the adorables that love and show loyalty for their communities. Pay farmers and the disgruntled more. The current underlying issue that demands an infusion of government cash is the wide spread sentiment of inequality. A very prevalent view among some voters and policy makers is “People ought to help themselves!” But the reality of having self reliance slowly started to die when it takes two jobs to make a living wage and both parents working. Solve inequality.and make more people resilient to life’s challenges.
inequality in our nation is relatively small, greed and entitlement is the real problem.
So greed does not lead to inequality. Who knew? It must all that fake news!
another interesting point, David, you will be in the minority in US, since 60% of Americans approve of Trump’s handling of the C19 crisis, that, says a lot of that country and its people.
I’ve said it before: Given their resources and overall wealth, Americans are proportionately more ignorant than any other society on the planet. Those guys are stupid. And that is just NOT my bias….the US is renown for being ignorant of just about everything ‘cept sports and celebrities. They just do not know stuff. And that ignorance is abundantly manifest in Trumpism. Trump trumpets being stupid. It is a ‘style’ favoured by Bubba and the deplorables. “T’ hell with science and all them eggheads, the real problem we face here in Texas is brown people! Hey! Didja hear they traded Brady to the Bucs?”
Ouch! – Margy
For the record, I have tons of smart, educated friends in the US. But the record also shows that what I wrote is true. Too many ill-educated folks being entertained on junk-food and junk-TV. C’mon, ML…call me wrong?
Wrong only 49% of Americans support Trump’s ineptitude.
My recent readings had that as even lower….40-44%…? But it makes no difference. Even 40% is 130 million people. In a modern, so-called civilized and sophisticated society there should not be a dozen supporters of such a stupid person.
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To be clear Dave, do you support the concept of a “Basic income or a Guaranteed Income”?
To be clear? You mean you are thinking of voting for me? Sheesh….I just rant. I do not DO. If I was in office, I’d gain weight ’cause of so much time spent at the trough and on vacation. I’d NOT be corrupt in the lyin’ and cheatin’ style so popular amongst our MPs but that’s because the perks of the office are so good I could even give back my salary and still live at a higher lifestyle than I do now.
But – to be clear – NO. I do not believe in a guaranteed income except for the ‘challenged’ and ‘damaged’. We need to either kill everyone who can’t run a six minute mile or support them properly. This quiet torture of leaving them on the streets or dying-on-their-feet in Walmart is just too horrible to address in the way we are addressing it.
Now, having said that, (no GI) I do not believe our youth should be indebted when going to school. Education should be free or very, very cheap but, if you are NOT passing nor learning at a measurable pace, then no more free education. Free medical and dental, too. Same reason. Keep your self relatively healthy and it is free. Begin MMA sports or recreational drug taking and ‘free’ is off the table. I am a socialist that recognizes fully that the individual is his/her own worst enemy and disinclined to do a lot of favours for others. But, like being innocent until proven guilty, I would support everyone until they proved unworthy.
Why? Because we are all in this together. Your basic rotten-toothed, scurvy-ridden, drug addict is gonna cost us a bundle in the long haul. Either exterminate the bastard or give him a proper hand-up. One that works.
But my answer is an answer to a question based on the existing system. My REAL answer is ‘we need a different system’. I have some ideas on that but none that are well thought out. I have to shut up about that – but not about saying, ‘we need a better system’.
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Plenty examples exist of a better way to organize society alone the lines of democratic socialism. About 30% want a type of Darwinian Capitalism where only the strong survive and the weak perish. The Darwinian view of the world was tried in nineteenth century Victorian England with scant success. Also called letting the invisible hand decide or guide.