Scenes from the class war

It’s not fair.”

I can’t believe they’re doing this to older people.”

So how do these families survive?

“The study, by the Rand corporation, looks at the 14 states that have said they will opt out of the new Medicaid funds. It finds that the result will be they get $8.4 billion less in federal funding, have to spend an extra $1 billion in uncompensated care, and end up with about 3.6 million fewer insured residents.”

“Dives in Hell and Lazarus in Heaven” (1510)

“I wonder whether even Republicans really believe that story — or at least are confident enough in their diagnosis to justify policies that more or less literally take food from the mouths of hungry children.”

“[Meals on Wheels] programs that serve the elderly stand to see $41 million in federal funding cut, resulting in as many as 19 million fewer meals served.”

“It seems to me we are encouraging the behavior of purchasing food.”

“Their first exposure to the project, they said, was when the tenants in the church’s properties were told their rental homes were being vacated to make way for the future parking lot.”

Useless military expenditures are being supported by Christian politicians while real human needs are being treated as concerns that are not appropriate for the government to address.”

“If not for two years of deficit reduction, 1.5 million more Americans would be employed, and the economy would be growing fast enough to lower joblessness at a steady clip.”

“Due to low wages and few benefits, Walmart workers at a single 300-person Supercenter store rely on anywhere from $904,542 to $1,744,590 in public benefits per year.”

“Who gets foreclosed on when they’ve made all payments on time?”

“There’s now a strong economic incentive to stop denying the reality of climate change.”

“The only way for even a putative meritocracy to hope to pass ethical muster, to be considered fair, is if those who are the luckiest in all of those respects also have the greatest responsibility to work hard, to contribute to the betterment of the world, and to share their luck with others.”

The Boston Molasses Disaster.”

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  • themunck

    Wallmart….I must admit, I do not get it. How is it legal to pay so little your workers must also get welfare? What’s the point of a minimum wage if you can’t actually live on it?

    Off topic: Dear disqus. Decide. Are you gonna call me by my actual name, the fake name I first registered as on facebook, or my username? Because I’m tired of switching between “Raistlin Lovecraft” and “themunck”. Someone might see one of my posts, not realise it’s by me, and accidentally think it contains some sense of relevance or perspective.

  • The_L1985

    Because nobody has bothered to tie minimum wage to inflation.

  • Fusina

    Washington Post. Style Invitational. Entry by Tim Livengood. Neologisms: Report from Week 1018, May 19th 2013

    Voldemart: Wal-Mart rebrands for a more positive image.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Riastlin-Lovecraft/100000678992705 Riastlin Lovecraft

    …What. Why not? oO. Incompetence? Corruption? Those are the only two reason I can see for why nobody would keep minimum wage a fixed number while prices grow.

  • The_L1985

    Yes to both.

  • grendelkhan

    Lack of incentives. Things like tax brackets affect the middle class, which has some political pull, but the minimum wage? There’s barely enough political pressure to keep it there, much less raise it. Poor people don’t have political clout, and their policy preferences don’t make a difference:

    http://www.demos.org/stacked-deck-how-dominance-politics-affluent-business-undermines-economic-mobility-america

    In Oregon, the minimum wage is indexed to inflation, which has worked pretty well for them:

    http://articles.latimes.com/2013/mar/14/business/la-fi-mo-minimum-wage-hearing-20130314

  • ohiolibrarian

    Have you seen the new commercials with “real Walmart shoppers” who are all thrilled with shopping there. It just makes me want to smack those people and remind them of the costs that other people (employees, sweatshop workers, etc.) pay.

  • Lori

    Those people are hurting themselves as much as they’re hurting other people. Walmart’s shitty policies depress wages for people who have never worked in a Walmart.

    The problem is that A) we’re addicted to cheap plastic crap and the advertising that gets people to buy it and B) we yammer on about “connecting the dots”, but don’t actually connect the ones that matter.

  • phantomreader42

    Not to mention the shoddy merchandise Walmart sells.

  • The_L1985

    It’s like they think we’ll all completely forget about how shitty Wal-Mart’s business practices are if they just bombard us with enough ads.

    It’s to the point that I’ve started applauding Publix (which has no shareholders other than its own employees, and actually pays them decently) for their “Walmart doesn’t ALWAYS have the lowest price!” billboards.

  • phantomreader42

    I have had great experiences with Publix. Didn’t know that about them, that makes me like them even more!

  • aklab

    There are also some of us who hate to shop at Wal-mart and have to shop at Wal-mart because it’s all we can afford.

  • Fanraeth

    According to my uber-conservative family, minimum wage jobs are meant to be entry jobs only and anyone working them instead of moving up in the company or getting a better job has no right to complain. Apparently in this delightful theoretical world lazy people and teenagers don’t deserve to make a living wage because socialism or something.

  • themunck

    Auch. You have my symphaties.

  • JustoneK

    I’m starting to wish rightwingers would just admit they’re okay with us dying.

  • smrnda

    Some of them do. I never got why Ron Paul seemed shocked by the ‘let ’em die’ response to what happens to the uninsured. It was really just his own opinion, but without sugar-coated language.

  • JustoneK

    It’s the sugary coating that baffles me.

  • Lori

    My suspicion is that they think the sugary coating is fooling the rest of us and they’re worried about what will happen to them if it stops working.

  • PorlockJunior

    Actual honest research, definitely not found in Republican press releases, indicates that money does not buy increases happiness — beyond about $70,000 a year! I won’t say how far on which side of that number I am, but it has a string ring of truth for me.

    Good info on this can be found in Kahneman’s _Thinking, Fast and Slow_, which is a helluva good book. Some quasi-Nobel prize winners are really smart. The others start big hedge funds that can’t possibly fail. possibly fail. possibly fail. possibly flyawwillll.psbsdly ffff

  • Lori

    There’s actually quite a bit of research that indicates that more money does produce more happiness well above the $70k figure, at least provided that one spends it correctly. (Basically, once you have the option you should buy experiences, not things.)

    http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/04/money-buys-happiness-and-you-can-never-have-too-much-new-research-says/275380/

    http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/01/yes-money-does-buy-happiness-6-lessons-from-the-newest-research-on-income-and-well-being/267016/

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Perhaps it was because of the implicit dismissal of charity or the fact death is bad by those who made the ‘let ’em die’ response.

  • smrnda

    Nothing is standing in the way of a charity based solution to solve social and economic problems, and they sure aren’t getting solved through charity.

    I’ve been on disability, which means I got government aid. If someone were to suggest to me that that should be removed and substituted with ‘charity,’ then they do not care whether I live or die since they aren’t doing anything to guarantee the problem gets solved. Plus, charity is a pretty degrading experience, mostly since the impression I get is that people just use it as a recruitment tool a lot of the time.

  • ohiolibrarian

    They also use it as a way to beat the unlucky over the head with their “inferiority”.

    They also like to play the game wherein if they or their family need welfare/unemployment insurance/medicare/food stamps/an abortion it is different than if anyone they disapprove of needs any of the above. Do you remember Craig T. Nelson’s priceless rant about being on food stamps and welfare but not getting any help? (Yeah, HUH?)

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Does he think the magic food stamp fairy exists or something? I really wish more people realized just how much the government gives them a leg up –

    And then I remember the hard-core Republican I used to know who actually worked for a state government. The only thing that ended up saving his job* was that the state government hit a rough patch around 2000/2001 because of the dotcom recession, and couldn’t find a buyer to privatize the IT support division to.

    So yeah, it would appear to be a futile wish.


    * He was supposed to be in line to get a salary bump as the new head of the division after privatization, but I suspect that wouldn’t have lasted long if the state government ever found a company that could put in a lower bid come contract renewal time.

  • Lori

    Acknowledgment of the reality that charity is not, never has been and never will be enough =/= dismissal of charity, implied or otherwise.

    Trying to pretend that screwing the poor is about keeping charity’s delicate fee-fees from getting hurt = bullshit of the worst sort.

    Also, WTH are you talking about with that “death is bad” bit? How is wanting sick people to have insurance a dismissal of the fact that death is bad? How is yelling “Let ’em die” a worthwhile affirmation of the grim reality of death and not just an expression of the id of horrible people acting out the Right wing’s typical “crabs in a bucket’ approach to economic issues?

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    I don’t think you understood my sentence. How did you understand it?

  • Omnicrom

    How about this: If you think that we misunderstood you then explain in greater detail and clarity what message you were trying to get across.

    What came across was “The government shouldn’t do anything, we should rely on private charities.” Said statement also had either the implicit understanding that Charities can’t do it all and that it will result in greater suffering and dying among the poor, or was said from a lack of understanding about the reality of how much charitable aid can be provided for the poor.

    Am I wrong? If so please correct me as clearly as possible.

  • Lori

    I know I didn’t understand your sentence. That’s why I asked WTH you were talking about. Answer the question by restating your position. Or don’t, but if you don’t then don’t complain that people don’t understand you. Your posts are not a quiz for me.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    Plenty of them do. I’ve had a couple even on this board tell me to go die, since I can’t work because I’m disabled.

  • JustoneK

    I’m not sure they’d do that face to face, tho. There’s a lot less shame in anonymous bigotry/assholery.

    It’s also factually wrong, because disabled folks do all kinds of work anyway.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    It depends on the disability. I cannot work because of mine. Getting people to understand that disabled really does often mean DISabled is very nearly impossible.

    Also, disabled people are being harassed face-to-face in Britain quite often nowadays, and it is in fact spreading over here.

  • JustoneK

    is “that kinda sucks” and a long list of menial clerical jobs appropriate here?

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    This is a joke, right? I do believe you’re joking, but since I’ve encountered people actually saying stuff like that so often, it’s hard to tell.

    More people tell me I should found my own business, though. Because constant severe pain, crappy short-term memory, a complete loss of the ability to do math, and large amounts of prescription painkillers = perfect business owner!

  • JustoneK

    I had a hunch it wasn’t.

    This may be part of the Disability Superpower/Cursed with Awesome tropes here – since you’re Disabled, clearly you’ve got other shit to compensate and can do more than ALL THOSE NORMAL FOLKS. Business is easy! Look at all those Regular Guys doing it!

    (Apologies if I’ve said something truly stupid. I’m fairly TAB myself, it’s outside my purview, I just know disabilities cover a damned wide range anyway.)

  • smrnda

    I had this same nonsense come up with me when someone encouraged me to ‘be my own boss.’ Because that would totally work out if I end up sporadically and unpredictably unable to work.

  • Carstonio

    The best thing I can say about their mentality is they see themselves as hall monitors dealing with unruly students, or guardians of the last remnants of civilization against the barbarian hordes.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Clearly you never saw Dave Hagstrom’s letter in which he flat out informed the people he represents that they ought to be happy if they work three jobs and live on rice and beans and die at the age of 40. In fact, he was downright insulted that anyone would make that letter public instead of accepting it gracefully in the spirit of Jesus Christ (to whom he compares himself).

  • JustoneK

    Jebus. I had not. WAIT IT SAYS APRIL 1

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Too much to hope that it was a bad joke, especially when there’ve been follow-ups. And yes, he sees what he does, making billions of dollars off it while casually telling people to just die quicker plz, as being “fucking messianic.” His words.

  • ohiolibrarian

    Wow, he really, REALLY doesn’t understand economics does he?

  • Pinkie Pie is Best pony

    are you fucking shitting me? “you’re just going to have to accept that that people just don’t need to live as long”? ARE YOU FUCKING SHITTING ME? And seriously? “you’ll just to need to work a few extra jobs for less money.” who the flying fuck is this deformed pile of pig jizz? I can’t even call him an asshole! I am an asshole, and we don;t say shit like that!

  • PorlockJunior

    “I am an asshole, and we don;t say shit like that!”

    Your Internet will be delivered to you by FedEx. Speaking as an expert.

  • SkyknightXi

    So what DO we call him in non-coarse terms? Manticore? Dullahan? Powrie? Cockatrice? Strigoi? Aughisky?

    (VERY useful, malign mythical creatures…)

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    I am one to do so (several times).

  • Lori

    Right back at ya, EH. Right back at ya.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    We know. You don’t have to keep wagging around your little stick trying to show us what an evil person you are. We know. And it’s not scaring anyone. You’re just pathetic.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    I do not consider myself evil. I am not trying to scare anyone.

  • JustoneK

    What are you trying to do?

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    To point out I already admitted I was “okay” with people dying due to their inability to make a series of voluntary exchanges necessary for them to stay alive.

  • Jim Roberts

    “You get to live, but first, you have to do something for me.”

    Wow.

  • Lori

    The fact that you think that’s not evil would be disturbing if I hadn’t gotten over giving a crap about anything you say.

  • The_L1985

    There are disabled and poor people in my fucking family, asshole. You are saying that my deaf-and-mentally-retarded second cousin doesn’t deserve to live. You are saying that my other second cousin, who was a thalidomide baby, doesn’t deserve the same medical care I get as a healthy middle-class person with insurance.

    You are saying that I am more worthy of survival than people I have known for years, people with whom I have strong blood ties, people I’d rather die than selling out. FUCK you if that’s your attitude. Your attitude is killing real people. The poor and disabled are real human beings, not some abstract concept you’ll never have to worry about.

  • smrnda

    I also want to second, that I don’t see much difference between simply letting certain people, like the disabled, die, and just rounding them up and killing them.

  • The_L1985

    I’d argue that murder is less cruel than EH’s modest proposal. Murder at least is over quickly. If you have, say, diabetes and can’t afford treatment, you’re looking at a slow death that can take a year–and in the meantime you will lose ALL sensation in your feet and go blind.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    I am not opposed to the legalization of assisted suicide.

  • The_L1985

    Assisted suicide is a form of SUICIDE. As in, the person involved wants to die. Just because someone has a disease that they can’t afford to treat doesn’t mean that they want or deserve to die.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    The latter option would cost far more and have unfortunate moral implications.

  • reynard61

    I’d be interested (purely out of morbid curiosity, mind you) in which bothers you more, the cost or the “unfortunate moral implications”?

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    He’s saying people like me should die for things happening to us that are completely beyond our control. The thing is, after I get over that first flash of anger, a deep pity for him and those with his attitude sets in. Because this will happen to him. Oh, not exactly the same thing as happened to me, probably. But life is gonna take a big fat chunk out of him in some way he was not able to predict, and he is going to be completely and utterly unable to handle it.

    Very sad, really.

  • J_Enigma32

    You know, let me thank you for that. It’s the first time I’ve ever seen someone come right out and say, “fuck you, I’ve got mine.” Normally, that’s just a liberal characterization of libertarianism.

    Where the hell do you get off thinking those exchanges are “voluntary?” Those people are coerced into it. They’re FORCED by an economic system that leaves them the choice between that and death.

    I thought libertarianism was all about non-coercion. Or is it just about non-coercion of YOU?

  • Winter

    From what I’ve seen of libertarians, it’s more a case of running on a narrow definition of coercion. Somehow, enforcing laws against, say, demanding sex from prospective employees in exchange for employment counts as coercion, but that demand does not. Or living wage requirements versus a company town setup.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Who’s doing the “coercion” of people into the voluntary exchanges I speak of?

  • J_Enigma32

    First off, stop calling them voluntary. If it’s a choice between this and death, it’s not voluntary.

    The coercion comes into play with the situation; the situation has left me with no choice. I am either forced to do this – by the ruling capitalist class who has determined that I must have money to pay for food, or I must have money to pay for basic necessities in life – or I will die.

    Who’s doing the coercion? The wealthy capitalists. The business owners. Capitalism in general is a system of unwilling coercion; you buy my product or you don’t get it. And if my product is medicine you need to survive, well, guess what.

    Really, I’m amused I have to even bother explaining this to you. Sometimes I wonder if you’re as stupid as you act like you are.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Not giving ≠ coercion.

  • J_Enigma32

    No. But forcing people to do it in order to survive does.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Don’tcha know, only the government can coerce. When it’s a guy in a suit with a tire iron, that’s just Enforcing a Private Contract.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    lolololol

    voluntary exchanges

    and you’re still totes 100% trufax pinky swear not a libertarian

    dude

    YOU TALK LIKE ONE. YOU WRITE LIKE ONE.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    I still hold a good number of libertarian beliefs. I do not consider myself a libertarian as I support better enforcement of existing workplace, product, and service safety regulations.

  • Omnicrom

    That’s nice of you EH, but you still act like the absolute shittiest sort of Libertarian. Please tell us oh wise one, what are these magical “voluntary exchanges” that would allow a poor person with a serious medical condition to magically afford treatment?

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Usually, labor for currency.

  • J_Enigma32

    Unless, you know, they can’t work.

    In which case we’re right back to coercing these people to do things they can’t do in order to survive. Since libertarianism is all about bullying and coercion.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    libertarianism is all about bullying and coercion.

    -Completely baseless statement is completely baseless.

  • J_Enigma32

    Except, you know, for all the times you and others have proved it by opening your mouth.

  • reynard61

    And just what kind of “labor” are we talking about? I would assume (from what you’ve written on this subject thus far) that it would be something geared specifically toward *exacerbating* the condition and suffering of the person doing the laboring. (i.e. Hard physical labor for heart patients, something requiring a lot of lifting and bending for spinal patients, etc.) We could even turn it into a Reality show in the style of Stephen King’s novel The Running Man. I bet *that* would be a ratings-getter!

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Do you see any other options that don’t involve government?

  • reynard61

    Employers could set aside a small number of jobs that could be done by those of limited physical ability. (They could also set up a cooperative where those of limited physical ability can register and be notified of jobs that fit their particular limit parameters.) They could also not shit their pants whenever someone asks for health insurance that covers their particular condition and/or asks for a modicum of accommodation to their limitation(s). But that, of course, would be asking a Job Creator to actually (grab your fainting couches and clutching pearls folks!) *do something for the betterment of society*; which one simply does not do in polite company.

  • Omnicrom

    So are you saying that all the people that are poor and in dire straits are in such a fix because they CHOOSE not to work?

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    I don’t believe in free will.

  • Omnicrom

    That’s completely irrelevant to the topic at hand. Do you believe that those that are poor and ill are that way because they choose not to work?

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    No.

  • Omnicrom

    Then what Voluntary Exchanges should they make to avoid dying?

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    He’s trying to get attention.

    I’m sorry for feeding it.

  • JustoneK

    I dunno. He’s made expressions of good faith before, or at least attempting it. I am by no means a good judge, much less online, but I sorta took it at face value.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    “Expressions of good faith” — er, yeah, he wants disabled and poor people to die. So, um. Also, that kind of manipulation that you’re talking about is a classic tactic to try to get attention.

    I don’t know about his motivations, and I don’t care. The effect he has is to get a lot of people really upset and angry, drawing a ton of attention to himself and away from whatever else we were discussing. And I’m fucking sick of it, and I’m sick with myself for feeding it. I don’t particularly enjoy seeing people saying they want me to die because of something that’s entirely beyond my ability to control. It’s not like being in constant, extreme pain is exactly sun and roses in the first place.

  • FearlessSon

    Oh, but I am sure that everyone wants someone to die, sometimes. Hell, I would be in favor of social programs which systematically disenfranchised, say, misogynists and homophobes, as opposed to poor and/or disabled people.

    Sadly, there is no way to do so which will not cause a lot of collateral damage.

  • smrnda

    I’d like the same thing, and it’s good to acknowledge the collateral damage would be too high.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    Meh, life’s too short to wish death on people. I figure being stuck being themselves is a bad enough torment for the EHs of the world.

  • Jenny Islander

    I went around in a similar way with somebody who insisted that people who had trouble feeding their families shouldn’t have “so many children.” I explained that when we started our family, our jobs had been projected, conservatively, to be able to support our planned number of children to adulthood. Then came years of across-the-board wage freezes and monthly hikes in the price of food and fuel. And the State of Alaska, not being run by complete scum-sucking wastes of skin, adjusted the guidelines for aid to reflect the new reality. And now I get a little bit of federal money every month in the form of milk and cheese and bread for our children.

    So, I asked the jerk, which of my children should I kill so that the others will no longer qualify for WIC?

    Hem, haw, change subject.

  • phantomreader42

    And the jerks who say things like this are generally the same jerks who think you shouldn’t be able to have an abortion, or easily accessible contraception, or even effective sex education. They demand you rewind time to have fewer children, but deny you information and services you could have used in the past to manage your reproduction. Then they blame YOU for the shit THEY pulled.

  • JustoneK

    Having caught up on this thread, I sit corrected entirely.
    This makes zero sense from the starting premise I’ve read from him.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    Perhaps he is trying to trigger latent superpowers using the Slacktivist commentariat as a testing group. He wants to enrage us enough that one of us will spontaneously develop the power to slap people through the internet.

  • Fusina

    I am very glad that I was not taking a sip of coke just then.

    And I totally want that superpower…I swear I won’t abuse it…much…

  • Lori

    You might want to rethink that first one, considering that you’re admitting to telling people it’s fine with you if they die because they’re poor or disabled or otherwise inconvenient to the American kleptocracy.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    Despite popular media, in real life evil people almost never believe that they’re evil.

  • reynard61

    “No one is an unjust villain in his own mind. Even — perhaps even especially — those who are the worst of us. Some of the cruelest tyrants in history were motivated by noble ideals, or made choices that they would call ‘hard but necessary steps’ for the good of their nation. We’re all the hero of pour own story.” – Jim Butcher, Turn Coat

    Just sayin’…

  • Chris Hadrick

    Some people just enjoy bullying

  • FearlessSon

    I’m starting to wish rightwingers would just admit they’re okay with us dying.

    Sometimes I want to hand them a gun and say, “Alright, if you feel that strongly about it, then go ahead and shoot me. Because if that is what you are so certain of, you should at least be honest about what you are doing.”

  • J_Enigma32

    I would, but I’d be scared of the result.

  • FearlessSon

    It comes from my belief that a willingness to die is more powerful expression of conviction than a willingness to kill. Though those are not mutually exclusive, having the later willingness without the former willingness is craven. “Minimizing losses,” is good, but being willing to sacrifice other people while being unwilling to sacrifice yourself demonstrates weakness.

    I would want to demonstrate that. I would want to show the person who is suggesting that I should die just who they are when they have my life in their hands. More importantly, I want to show everyone who witnesses it go down that. In the middle of the Congressional floor during a session would be a good spot for it. Maybe I do not survive that, but my death would be powerful lesson for those who see it, and I can only hope good comes from that understanding.

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

    The number of employees at Walmart who will have to rely on public aid will skyrocket over the next few years.

    I have worked at a Walmart for three years now, and from what I hear from my coworkers, starting pay has steadily dropped over the years. Many coworkers who have only been there a few years longer than I have say that they could not make what they make at Walmart anywhere else (I could probably find a higher-paid position if I stood under a bridge with a sign that said, “Will Work for Job”). And those who have been there for more than ten years started at close to a living wage and raises, which used to be four to five times as much there as they are now, would have brought them to a living wage within a few years.

    And a number of those coiworkers have been with Walmart long enough to be nearing retirement age. This means that they will be replaced with lower-paid employees who will need public aid to get by.

  • Lori

    The fact that Walmart is allowed to get away with wage policies that are in effect a massive transfer of wealth from the tax payers to the already-obscenely-rich-for-no-good-reason-whatsoever Walton heirs ought to be a scandal. The fact that so few people even notice, let alone give a crap, says a great deal about what’s wrong with this country.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    Where’s Robin Hood when we need him?

  • Lori

    I’ve said more than once that Leverage needs to be a real thing.

  • Hexep

    You need some Red Guards? I can get you a line on the uniforms. Gotta supply your own kerosene, though.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    If we can get it officially declared as a scandal, I bid for calling it Waltongate.

  • Lori

    I don’t think I can get behind that. It sounds like John Boy did something bad.

  • Jim Roberts

    Bet it’s a two part episode.

  • Lori

    A very special two-part episode.

  • SkyknightXi

    I still can’t figure out what it is they need the wealth for if they’re ALREADY that rich. They haven’t actually said what they’re afraid will happen if they STOP drawing in the wealth, have they?

    At least with the companies proper, it was mentioned somewhere (I forget whether here or FSTDT) that a big part of the reason companies are often determined to make as much money as possible, even if it undercuts the future in any way, is because if they DON’T, the shareholders will abandon them–and thus effectively annihilate the business. I doubt the speculators would see it this way (at least consciously), but it seems like they’re blackmailing the companies into doing their bidding.

    It seems like a betrayal of the original point of corporations–defraying the risk so it would be easier for a venture to begin (i.e. the more shareholders there are, the easier it is for each one because they risk impoverishment that much less). I have to wonder if there’s a reason why speculators seem unwilling to DIRECTLY aid society. At least, they’d better have a livelihood besides stock juggling…

  • Lori

    I still can’t figure out what it is they need the wealth for if they’re
    ALREADY that rich. They haven’t actually said what they’re afraid will
    happen if they STOP drawing in the wealth, have they?

    It’s a way of keeping score. If they stop clawing all that money into their own bank accounts they might fall off the top of the Forbes list. How embarrassing would that be? Can’t have that.

  • SkyknightXi

    {sigh} Yes, they can have that. I’ve yet to hear of anyone dying of glory deficiency. What’s the point of glory if the cost is abjuring honor?

  • Lori

    I’m with you, but they aren’t. They don’t see honor the same way we do. They feel entitled to what they have and convinced that they’re not taking from others, merely keeping what’s theirs. They don’t feel any loss of honor as a result of paying people so poorly for their work that they have to go on food stamps.

  • Consumer Unit 5012

    Public-stock companies are required by law to Maximize Shareholder Value – which is apparently synonymous with ‘act like greed-crazed psychopaths’. If the CEO doesn’t screw over employees, suppliers, and customers, they will be ousted and replaced with someone sufficiently rapacious.

    Which is why I think the stock market needs to be destroyed before it ruins civilization completely.

  • Turcano

    Here’s a bit more insightful look at how people survive in extreme poverty.

  • EllieMurasaki

    He hasn’t posted anything new in six months. I hope he’s all right.

  • Turcano

    I tracked down his Twitter; he’s fine. I think the advent of FaceBook means he doesn’t post on LiveJournal all that much unless he thinks it’s important.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Oh. Okay. Thanks.

  • Chris Hadrick

    “Useless military expenditures are being supported by Christian politicians while real human needs are being treated as concerns that are not appropriate for the government to address.”

    by people here to in the name of jobs, Keynesian economics, etc

  • ohiolibrarian

    Say, what? Are you suggesting that jobs are not real human needs? Or that military expenditures are? Or … I got nothin’.

  • Chris Hadrick

    I’m suggesting people here and elsewhere support useless military expenditures in the name of jobs.

  • Chris Hadrick

    who keeps downvoting me?? show yourself

  • Consumer Unit 5012

    If I could downvote you, I would.

  • reynard61

    Then you’d be wrong in my case. I’ve never been reluctant to point out when our Military/Industrial Complex is spending money on stupid shit. (Granted, it hasn’t come up on this particular site very often; but I’ve made my opinion known on other fora.)

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    He’s saying the same thing he’s always saying: “Libertarians are against war, which makes them more moral than you even though we would happily watch half the people in this country starve to death”

  • Carstonio

    Are you suggesting that government should have no role in the economy at all?

  • Chris Hadrick

    I’m suggesting some people are okay with the military industrial complex / wasteful military spending because it provides jobs.

  • reynard61

    I’ve seen quite a few people who are. They’re usually Senators and congresscritters with Defense-related corporations and/or military bases in their state/district. What’s your point?

  • Chris Hadrick

    No, I meant people here of the liberal persuasion. To the victims of our military and their weapons there is no difference between military Keynesians and hawks.

    A person who hates the Military industrial complex because they are a selfish Ayn Rand worshiping libertarian is morally better than someone who wants to keep it going because it’s a recession and people need jobs, etc

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Agreed.

  • Consumer Unit 5012

    A person who hates the Military industrial complex because they are a selfish Ayn Rand worshiping libertarian is morally better than someone who wants to keep it going because it’s a recession and people need jobs, etc

    I guess you really showed THAT strawman who’s boss.

    I’ve never met a ‘liberal’, ANYWHERE, who wants more military spending to ‘create jobs’ – there’s so much OTHER stuff our government could be spending money on with vastly better social effects!

  • Chris Hadrick

    It was in a debate here like 2 weeks ago. I’ll find it later. Here’s a thread on it

    http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014495115

    as you can tell there is much of this type of nice guy pro war piffle

  • smrnda

    My take is that the government can and should supply jobs. Some things are kind of just by nature government (police, fire, military, education, infrastructure, though the amount of $$$ they should get is up to debate.) It’d be nice if someone fixed the potholes, and if the potholes were fixed, that would mean less wear and tear on my bike, better gas mileage for cars, quicker commute times.

    Government jobs are fine with me, as long as they do something useful. Recent military expenditures don’t seem to deliver on much though.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Military Keynesianism is one of the most inefficient job creation vehicles out there. The only time I would support it is either: (a) NOTHING ELSE is remotely politically viable, or (b) the world is about to end and we need a huge army STAT.

    As usual, sir, you oversimplify in a manner that truly boggles my mind.

  • Chris Hadrick

    Military Keynesianism is very efficient in creating death which is what yuo are supporting if you support it. death death death

  • Chris Hadrick

    who downvoted that Bill Kristol?

  • BaseDeltaZero

    That’s probably true, but I don’t think you’ll find many people here that support it.

    Also downvote, because seriously.

  • Chris Hadrick

    Ellie does.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    “The study, by the Rand corporation, looks at the 14 states that have
    said they will opt out of the new Medicaid funds. It finds that the
    result will be they
    get $8.4 billion less in federal funding, have to spend an extra $1
    billion in uncompensated care, and end up with about 3.6 million fewer
    insured residents.”

    My God, talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face.

  • reynard61

    And then they’ll rush to the hospital and expect Medicaid to pay for the reattachment surgery.

  • reynard61

    Waitasec! An up-vote from EH?!?!?! I don’t know whether to be thankful, amused, insulted or frightened. (Is it a sign of The Apocalypse?)

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Well, really they’re cutting off hte nose of poor people to spite democrats. It doesn’t hurt them: it gets them re-elected. The people it hurts don’t count as “real people” to them, and the money it costs them hardly matters, it’s not like they were going to spendthat money helping people.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    A different kind of class warfare today- the director of media relations at the Salvation Army said today that homosexuals ought to die, then turned right around and issued a public statement saying that the Salvation Army looks forward to building a healthy relationship with homosexuals.

    Translation: We’ll take your money, but we sure hope you go to Hell! :D

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Yeah, I’m not sure they grasp the magnitude of the misapprehension under which they labor here.

  • Carstonio

    I’m not surprised. Do you have a link? Google didn’t seem to have it.

    Also, do any of you find it ironic that Tebow has been signed by the Patriots, who play in the one of the first states to legalize same-sex marriage?

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam
  • Carstonio

    Thanks. For many years I assumed that the Salvation Army was just another service organization like the Lions Club or the Rotary Club. I didn’t grasp the meaning of the name.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    Hmm… the thing is, I don’t care what his religious beliefs are, if he is able to keep them completely separate from his secular actions. Some people are actually able to do that. I doubt he’s one of them though.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    It’s the Salvation Army. They use their donations to buy lobbyists against equal marriage.

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    What I’m wondering, though, is if this has gotten too costly for them. The Boy Scouts are bending, not because their leaders’ beliefs are actually changing, but because they have to in order to survive.

  • Carstonio

    Today’s WTF moment:

    http://www.salon.com/2013/06/11/laura_ingraham_over_the_counter_plan_b_is_a_good_deal_for_pedophiles/

    How in the world would contraception incentivize sexual assault? Let’s assume for argument’s sake that Ingraham isn’t engaging in classic slut-shaming, and instead speculate that she believes men will rape if they won’t be held accountable for any resulting pregnancy. Who the hell knows with her…

  • http://lliira.dreamwidth.org/ Lliira

    It’s the same “reasoning” that reactionaries use against gay marriage. They say if men don’t HAVE to marry women, they’ll go around raping women all the time. And if women aren’t married, they’ll have no protection against sexual assault.

    It’s complete and utter nonsense, but it’s nonsense that some of these people do actually seem to believe.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    Yes, because abusers never try to control their victims through pregnancy! That’s why contraceptive sabotage is totally not a thing!

  • Jenny Islander

    And invaders forcing girls and women in occupied territory to bear their children in order to demoralize the population never happens.

  • PorlockJunior

    “But it’s worth keeping in mind that even the richest countries haven’t completely eradicated extreme poverty.”

    Plural? Countries?

    In my quick perusal of the Post’s story on poverty, I did not see any justification of that plural.

    In general it appears to me that the richest countries, plural, have done a great deal to wipe out extreme poverty, if you don’t weight an average by *how* rich each one is. These countries share some characteristics: spending less on health care and having longer life expectancy, for instance, as compared to The Great Outlier.

    Oops, I forgot lower rates of violent crime, though our Britannic and ex-Britannic cousins rival us in that regard.

  • BaseDeltaZero

    Even if they’ve done a great deal to wipe out extreme poverty, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’ve succeeded.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    That being said, I saw an amazing flash chart someone linked to here, which showed the overall convergence of health outcomes in the developed and developing worlds: even within Africa, there are now several countries whose capital cities, at the very least, match parts of Europe.

  • BaseDeltaZero

    So, my mother recently got back from a trip to Costa Rica, and told me of a man who was planning to immigrate there from the United States for two main reasons.
    1: To avoid tax increases and the evil terrible scourge of Obamacare.
    2: They have public health care.

    Hey there, cognitive dissonance.


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