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  #81  
Old 04.10.2011, 15:35
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Re: Occupy America

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If you mean by lucky, when I was assaulted by a gang of kids, and hospitalized, blind for day, with head injuries, paying ambulance mileage.

When I was hit by a car that ran a red light, and smashed thru the windshield and was ejected 20 feet out onto the pavement, and air lifted to the hospital.

When I did have basic dental, but that for some reason didn't cover local or general anesthesia so that the dentist had to pull my wisdom teeth with out anesthesia.

When a dog attacked me, and ripped half of my ear off, and I lay waiting in an emergency hospital room losing liters of blood waiting to be able to go in because they had serviced all the insurance paying patients first.

Now, my life has been no cancer, so far, but, I would not exactly say it was "lucky"...if you needed to know.
Well that's all very well but the new T&Cs are terrible, don't you think?
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  #82  
Old 04.10.2011, 15:41
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Re: Occupy America

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I am glad you groaned me. We are definitely not on the same level. Your worrying about a parent, and their SS payments, and me seeing whole entire families live together(extended), and being happy and trying to work thru the situation, is not a hardship. Clearly these are Musings from the middle class.
Just so you know, $300 a month doesn't qualify my mom as being "middle class".....it is considered poverty in the US. Perhaps you were able to scrape by with less than that but my point is that no US citizen should be in your or my mother's situation. Poverty, homelessness, and lack of medical care should not be an option in one of the richest countries in the world.
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  #83  
Old 04.10.2011, 15:45
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Re: Occupy America

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Just so you know, $300 a month doesn't qualify my mom as being "middle class".....it is considered poverty in the US. Perhaps you were able to scrape by with less than that but my point is that no US citizen should be in your or my mother's situation. Poverty, homelessness, and lack of medical care should not be an option in one of the richest countries in the world.
Richest? What defines wealth. As you can find out there in internet-land that the US has the same debt to citizen ration or worse then Greece.
Greece I say.
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Old 04.10.2011, 16:12
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Re: Occupy America

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Like supporting GM or the Detroit car makers to keep the US Industry alive?
Yes, exactly. It's not "the detroit car makers", it's GM. Ford did not take the money - because they didn't need to. Why? Cause they made cars people continued to buy while GM had completely lost the plot.

There was a famous hearing in Washington where all the managers were asked "will you work next year for one dollar?" and all GM guys said "yes, yes, one dollar, please bail us out". Ford CEO Alan Mulally answered "One dollar? I think I am happy where I am right now."

It is more than strange to watch how the US continuously preaches for free markets - even in third world countries where people starve - and then cherry pick which company to save. They let Lehmann die but there were far too many Goldmann people in the administration to watch GS go down... and I'd bet that GM has lots of workers in some critical election districts - otherwise it would be gone now.
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  #85  
Old 04.10.2011, 20:20
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Re: Occupy America

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Just wondering what kind of "freedoms" you think that we don't have? I feel much more constrained here in Switzerland than I ever did in the US what with my neighbors poking their collective noses in when I wash my car or when I hang curtains of a color they don't care for. Exactly how are people more "free" here?
The word "freedom," or any variant or synonym thereof, was never used in my original post. I don't understand what my post has to do with your question.

Sorry for the off-topic.
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Old 04.10.2011, 23:43
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Re: Occupy America

These are people that are part of the occupy movement:

http://wearethe99percent.tumblr.com/

Having left the US because of the lack of employment opportunities I can empathise with most of the people who wrote those posters. Most of the people I finished my grad degree with still do not have jobs.

Poverty and despair exist in the States more and more people are living on the edge, they cant afford their insurance and mortgage, working bit jobs just to put food on the table (if they can find jobs). These are not people who are uneducated, who "havent tried" or have been "lazy". These are honest people who have worked their whole lives, gotten educated and who done everything to live a successful life. Most of them have been wiped out by the 08' crisis, and the recession which is still ongoing.

Unemployment is officially at 9% but does not accurately reflect those affected by under employent or those who have given up hope looking for a job.

The people on this forum who judged the protesters and this movement are out of touch with the socio-economic situation in America. Be grateful that you get to live a privileged life and have the time to spread pathetic little messages on some internet forum.

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Old 05.10.2011, 08:12
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Re: Occupy America

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Oh I see the prob. It's not Corporate Welfare you are talking about, you are talking about Subsidies. Now, you can say that is bad. Subsidies. But I will tell you I disagree. Subsidies, at times seem frivilous. Like that money is going to some Fat Cartoon of a man smoking a cigar and laughing all the way to the bank.
What subsidies provide, especially to a farmer or anyone in agriculture an attempt at stability. What happens when some years there is a good crop, and the next year there is a dust bowl? The farmer loses his land. What this leads to is un stable food prices. Something outlined almost a century ago as the benchmark for stability in a country and for democracy. If you are having years where it is really cheap for food, and then years where it is really expensive, this will mostly effect poor people. They need a stable price range for food.

Anywhere else in the world that has prices spikes in food leads to rioting and revolutions, all based with in the poverty based communities.

When you stabilize food prices or make food cheap this also helps the rest of the entire country by giving one of the basic fundamentals to the working class.
When you have people growing too much food, prices bottom out, and farmers still lose their farms. And when that happens then again you will have following years of real expensive food as there is limited supply.
Food in America is really cheap compared with the rest of world, demographics pertaining. So cheap, and this again where subsidies come in, that we have to give it away to keep prices of some things from bottoming out. It's why the US government buys so much corn and rice, and then gives it to countries, such as in Africa, that have no or almost no food. Because they dealt with farming in in correct, un manageable, some times racist way, and now need donations to survive-IE subsidies.
While we are subsidizing in directly Africans to live another day, it's an outlet to keep out prices on a level kilter.

I hate these blanket statements that are kill "Corporate Welfare" it sounds catchy, without thoroughly thinking thru how it is true it might help a few mega farms, but mega or not, the "trickle" down or rather River Down effects are substantial on the most impoverished of all Americans.

I think the tax rate should go back to Clinton Era, atleast. But the fact is, blaming the bankers is stupid, and it's a not so easy way out. I saw those same damn info mmercials back in the states that offered everyone to re mortgage their homes, and go on vacation with all the free cash. I never called.
Or when buying a house, I never looked at the house a doctor could afford, and even if the broker tried to sell me the better rates, and get it for me, I still only made a cook's wage, and did not take it.

You can't go to a Used Car lot, and if the guy tries to sell you a Ford Fiesta, that it will run like a BMW, take your anger out on him later, because you didn't read the contract, do the research, and do the math.

People need to start taking accountability for their own actions, and stop thinking that how much credit they can get on their cards actually means more of their actual income, and live with in their means. My parent's generation only bought what they could afford, and would be embarrassed to have outstanding debt.

That is the most retarded fu#k thing I have heard this entire thread. Did you copy that from some economics book from 1947? This drivle is completely out of touch with reality. And what does credit have anything to do with corporate welfare? And why do people assume every American is up to their eyes in debt? I have been debt free my entire life and so has the rest of my family. Typical "stereotyping" from someone who has no clue. And congratulations that you were able to read an economics book from eras past.
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Old 05.10.2011, 08:38
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Re: Occupy America

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Poverty and despair exist in the States more and more people are living on the edge, they cant afford their insurance and mortgage, working bit jobs just to put food on the table (if they can find jobs). These are not people who are uneducated, who "havent tried" or have been "lazy". These are honest people who have worked their whole lives, gotten educated and who done everything to live a successful life. Most of them have been wiped out by the 08' crisis, and the recession which is still ongoing.

Unemployment is officially at 9% but does not accurately reflect those affected by under employent or those who have given up hope looking for a job.

The people on this forum who judged the protesters and this movement are out of touch with the socio-economic situation in America. Be grateful that you get to live a privileged life and have the time to spread pathetic little messages on some internet forum.
Not sure if taking a different view or asking questions qualifies as a "pathetic little message" but I suspect it might

I don't judge the protesters as such......they are desperate and I hope I never have to live in such a situation and feel lucky that so far, I haven't.

Although......let's just step back. Maybe it isn't luck....I trained and working in heavy Engineering in the North East of England which is an area that has been ravaged economically as have many of the areas quoted in the US. The mining, shipbuilding and heavy industry that was the backbone of that community for generations has been wiped out. I read the papers, I saw that my business was losing orders to the Chinese and knew what was inevitable. And before it happened, I did a part-time MBA, moved from being an Operations Manager to running a line on a night shift in a different industry in a different part of the country. An industry I identified had growth prospects and was recession proof. I worked hard and I shovelled sh*t at 3am for some time and then was promoted. I'm still with that company in Switzerland today.


So, you're right.....we have no idea how difficult it must be for each individual on the line and shouldn't judge them. However, don't judge me either.....the place we end up in our professional lives isn't ONLY down to governments and capitalist bankers, we own it and drive it and can make a difference and its patronizing to suggest that because I have an opinion that is different from yours, that I am out of touch with reality.

Final point....regarding the protests.....what do they actually want to change? What is the "ask"?
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  #89  
Old 05.10.2011, 10:00
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Re: Occupy America

One of the problems in the U.S. is too many people want to take the easy paths through life. They expect the, "American Dream" to be handed to them.
They would rather fill in a bubble for a politician that will, for the sake of their votes, pilfer the pockets of those who earn/create wealth, than make decisions to develop marketable job skills, work hard at a job, budget their money and forego luxuries.
Many of these same people who complain about the price of healthcare/insurance have the latest Droid/Iphone with an unlimited plan and/or a car on rims, a big-screen television with cable/satellite, Xbox/PS3 (and a huge library of games). They have unsecured debts, little-to-no savings, and live paycheck-to-paycheck. They don't see how these choices, their own choices, are what's truly keeping them back. They are put up on the Gilded Pedestal of the "Less Fortunate." From this lofty position, they blame everyone more fortunate than themselves for their own shortcomings.
Then there are those people, who study hard in school, develop marketable job skills, work hard, live below their means, save money for the future, do without some or many of the fancy things in life, contract little-to-no debt, and have a plan to handle a rainy day or two, or three, or four. When these people become financially independent, they are reviled as "cheaters," or "lucky" and the "less fortunate" rail against them, instead of trying to emulate their example. Many of these people quietly accept the fact that an increasing percentage of their hard work, the sweat off their backs, is taken in the form of taxation and redistributed to the "less fortunate," who have done nothing to earn this money, save exist, and the only significant thing these "less fortunate" people will do is add to their own swelling ranks.
The problem is that, in the U.S. there are, and always will be, more of the former class than of the latter class; and in a country of, "one person, one vote," the "less fortunate" will always have the votes to redistribute money from the successful individuals, in the name of "fairness." This, in turn, creates an increasing disincentive on the part of anyone to achieve past a certain point, and so economic growth and wealth become stagnant.
Examples of this include the behavior of the credit and housing markets in the U.S. over the past decade. Policies were put into effect in the U.S. with the intent of creating greater access to credit and greater home ownership, an "ownership society," the premise being that if the "less fortunate" are allowed more equal access to these two things, they would improve their economic situation. What ended up happening was entirely the opposite: people with abysmal or no credit were approved for loans on over-inflated properties (each a reason the mortgage should never have gone through) and the level of unsecured debt in America soared to new heights, even when adjusted for inflation. Now we have massive regulation on the credit card industry, driving up the cost of compliance, which is laid at the feet of those whose only fault was that they did not default on their credit card. Now we have the values of homes slashed, in some cases, more than in half, punishing people who have done nothing wrong but pay their mortgage on time.
To many of these protesters, the "American Dream" of a house in the suburbs with a nice car, two kids and a dog, and a nice vacation every year (or whatever your version of it may be), is a right to be given them by the government. But the unavoidable reality is that this dream can only be achieved by truly earning it.
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Old 05.10.2011, 10:14
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Re: Occupy America

The biggest problem with the United States is the risible belief that "the pursuit of happiness" is a right.

Life is miserable, hard, painful and (mercifully) short.

Just because some bit of paper in a museum suggests otherwise doesn't make it so.
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Old 05.10.2011, 10:19
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Re: Occupy America

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To many of these protesters, the "American Dream" of a house in the suburbs with a nice car, two kids and a dog, and a nice vacation every year (or whatever your version of it may be), is a right to be given them by the government. But the unavoidable reality is that this dream can only be achieved by truly earning it.
Call me crazy, but I'm fairly certain you have no clue what any of them are thinking, let alone collectively. Of course, I'd never dream of telling you that you're a complete idiot based on single post in an internet forum. That would be madness! It would be like I saw you walking down the street and said 'There goes one of those free-love hippie communists'
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Old 05.10.2011, 10:25
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Re: Occupy America

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To many of these protesters, the "American Dream" of a house in the suburbs with a nice car, two kids and a dog, and a nice vacation every year (or whatever your version of it may be), is a right to be given them by the government. But the unavoidable reality is that this dream can only be achieved by truly earning it.
I'm sure there are some who might fight this profile, but the average middle-class American Dream left decades ago. When you look at stagnating wages, the prices of homes, the cost of higher education and disappearing pensions/social security along with fewer jobs and higher demands on time and performance, there is no 'easy' anymore.

Personally, I think protests don't achieve much, but it might give some of these folks an outlet for their outrage at feeling powerless to rise up from whatever situation their in. Unfortunately, too, with the way economies on both sides of Atlantic are going, I think nothing is going to prevent a rather rough time for all of us over the next few years.

Ask yourself this, too, what if you lost your job here and had to return to the US (if you're from the US on a B permit and no tethers to elsewhere in the EU) only to not find a job in your field after a year or two of searching? There are many people in the same boat. When McDonalds has millions show up for a hiring day, things are a lot tougher down on the ground than the media is able to relate. I may not join them in the protests, but I understand their frustration.
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Old 05.10.2011, 10:26
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Re: Occupy America

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The biggest problem with the United States is the risible belief that "the pursuit of happiness" is a right.

Life is miserable, hard, painful and (mercifully) short.

Just because some bit of paper in a museum suggests otherwise doesn't make it so.
Blow me.......who put the hairs in your pork scratchings this morning?
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Old 05.10.2011, 10:29
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Re: Occupy America

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me.......who put the hairs in your pork scratchings this morning?
I don't mind the hairy ones. It's the ones with tattoos you've got to watch.
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Old 05.10.2011, 10:50
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Re: Occupy America

I think George Carlin sums it up pretty well.

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Old 05.10.2011, 11:07
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Re: Occupy America

It would be funny if the consequences were not so dire, however it would look like "we" are fulfilling the Peter Principle on so many fronts, political, economic and social. Semi-competent to reach this level of "civilization", now lacking the competence for the next level. It may take some serious, very serious, adjustments to get past this level of incompetence to the next level of competence, as any falling back to a previous level of competence seems to be out of question, though that choice may also not be open.

You cannot blame people for pursuing a life according to their imprints and social environment when they don't know any better, when they thought they were entitled to all they were promised, all they were misled to believe.

Rather than banging about over the symptoms of all the current malaise, better to put the energy into seeing things as they are, not how we thought them to be, not how we would like them to be, and seek some insight into finding competence again. It is an individual pursuit, you can't change anybody else, however when one finds a way, it has a knock on effect for the other.

Unfortunately calamity works better than protests when it comes to bringing about change, so calamity it will be if we don't wake the f up and get our noses out of our own tiny circles.
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Old 05.10.2011, 11:23
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Re: Occupy America

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I think George Carlin sums it up pretty well.
Yeah......I know you do. He's like the Pied Piper to you guys.

He's funny, but like all these guys, I never hear ALTERNATIVES, never solutions, only criticism. That's fine if you're a comic of course, but doesn't work so well if you are in a boardroom or running a country. You actually need to make decisions and stick by them.
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Old 05.10.2011, 11:41
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Re: Occupy America

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Yeah......I know you do. He's like the Pied Piper to you guys.

He's funny, but like all these guys, I never hear ALTERNATIVES, never solutions, only criticism. That's fine if you're a comic of course, but doesn't work so well if you are in a boardroom or running a country. You actually need to make decisions and stick by them.

I think the first step is to wake the people up. Most people don't have a clue about the inner workings of our gov't, CIA, military industrial complex, or our monetary policy, or even our foreign policy (which is run by Israel) THEN, we can discuss alternatives. Which would be to basically overthrow our current gov't either by election or by revolution or even by force from within. I know a few elite Marine units are ready for this, just waiting for the green light. Its hard for me to explain the inner workings of our "system" as very few people know about it or how incest it is. The easiest alternative that packs the most power for the punch would be to just return to the gold standard and reinstate our Constitution. If your accomplish these two things all the other problems will sort themselves out in due time.

It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning. - Henry Ford.
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Old 05.10.2011, 11:44
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Re: Occupy America

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I think the first step is to wake the people up. Most people don't have a clue about the inner workings of our gov't, CIA, military industrial complex, or our monetary policy, or even our foreign policy (which is run by Israel) THEN, we can discuss alternatives. Which would be to basically overthrow our current gov't either by election or by revolution or even by force from within. I know a few elite Marine units are ready for this, just waiting for the green light. Its hard for me to explain the inner workings of our "system" as very few people know about it or how incest it is. The easiest alternative that packs the most power for the punch would be to just return to the gold standard and reinstate our Constitution. If your accomplish these two things all the other problems will sort themselves out in due time.
Ah, OK....so the answer to the global economic downturn which is causing Americans to lose jobs is a coup d'etat?

And who then runs the country? A name if you have one would be great.

And what does that person do to create jobs?

Also - why do you judge your fellow countrymen/women as too stupid to understand the political system? Isn't that a bit insulting?
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Old 05.10.2011, 11:44
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Re: Occupy America

Some organizers are calling it a counter to the Tea Party movement in the U.S. - and if that's true, then it's certainly an important perspective to share. From what I've seen, there are quite a few very smart, informed people .... but also a fair share of nuts as well. We'll see how long it can last before it peters out.
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