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Thread: Why income/wealth equality is getting worse

  1. #71
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    Default Re: Why income/wealth equality is getting worse

    Quote Blue Lightning said View Post
    Quote wadaye said View Post
    ... the reality is that economic inequality is ... not only the driver but sometimes the essence of economic growth ...
    Agreed.

    I don't think that Shorten is suggesting the elimination of inequality and, personally, I wouldn't regard that as either feasible or desirable.
    There is some jnequality which arises just as a resylt of differential work and opportunity. Then there ia inequality by birth and external circumstance etc. The most obvious case in point the jnequality in citizenship and statelessness which is simply the result of a human invention desigmed to I nflict inequality
    Quite a bit of jnequality is downright evil.
    Edit: I know you were referring to jnequalities of work but perhaps that is not really an knequality but rather a difference. As society develops it is supposed to develop the capacity to provide equality (or at least not tske it away) taking into account differences.
    Last edited by wadaye; 22nd July 2017 at 12:26 AM.
    "I'm an ape, I'm an African ape and I'm proud of it, and you should be too". Richard Dawkins

  2. #72
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    Default Re: Why income/wealth equality is getting worse

    Quote wadaye said View Post
    As society develops it is supposed to develop the capacity to provide equality (or at least not tske it away) taking into account differences.
    Do you mean equality of opportunity or equality of outcome?

  3. #73
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    Default Re: Why income/wealth equality is getting worse

    Quote MikeJay said View Post
    Quote wadaye said View Post
    As society develops it is supposed to develop the capacity to provide equality (or at least not tske it away) taking into account differences.
    Do you mean equality of opportunity or equality of outcome?
    Life doesn't fit within these binary terms. Its far more complex than that in my view.
    "I'm an ape, I'm an African ape and I'm proud of it, and you should be too". Richard Dawkins

  4. #74
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    Default Re: Why income/wealth equality is getting worse

    Quote wadaye said View Post
    Life doesn't fit within these binary terms. Its far more complex than that in my view.
    Yes it does in every case you care to mention, now answer the question.

  5. #75
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    Default Re: Why income/wealth equality is getting worse

    Quote MikeJay said View Post
    Do you mean equality of opportunity or equality of outcome?
    I think it depends on scope.

    if you are looking at a given individual, I don't think is makes sense to speak of equality of outcome. there is too much variability that a given individual represents (as compared to another) to make equality of outcome a realistic goal, even if you thought it was desirable.

    if you are looking at populations, these variations wash out. so you could say - for instance - that you want equality of outcome of wages between genders, and these are usually attainable, at least in theory. I also think that it does not make sense to speak of equality of opportunity in these cases. what does it actually mean that 'women' have an equal opportunity of wages to 'men'. 'women' as a collective don't apply for jobs or work in them. individual women do.

    I think we can all agree that we GENERALLY want equality of opportunity at an individual level and equality of outcome at the group level. I also think that the former is the best way to get to the latter.

    there are ofcourse situations where neither is desirable or sensible.
    The less people know, the more stubbornly they know it. (Osho)

  6. #76
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    Default Re: Why income/wealth equality is getting worse

    this may provide some answers to the OP

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/ent...b041356ebed8ac

    White House senior adviser Stephen Miller caused a stir on Wednesday with a contentious press briefing where he made the case that new legislation to cut legal immigration would reduce “wealth inequality.”

    But while scholars debate the effects of immigration on workers’ wages, there is no evidence that immigration levels have played a significant role in the soaring levels of income and wealth inequality in the U.S. in recent decades.


    “I don’t think any serious economic analyst believes immigration is a major cause of rising inequality,” said Jacob Hacker, an inequality expert at Yale University. “The bottom line is, you wouldn’t get to immigration until page 4 in a list” of inequality’s causes.
    The less people know, the more stubbornly they know it. (Osho)

  7. #77
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    Default Re: Why income/wealth equality is getting worse

    ^Without reading the entire article (which I will attempt to do later) I would claim that, without any shadow of doubt, immigration has been a major driver of inequality and lack of opportunity in the industry that I work in (Information Technology).

    That said, I don't believe that broad based immigration at sensible levels is a major driver of inequality. But large-scale immigration targeted at specific industries based on spurious or outright dishonest claims of skills shortages is a driver of inequality in those industries for obvious reasons.

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  9. #78
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    Default Re: Why income/wealth equality is getting worse

    One example I can think of. A good friend who I used to work with in IT was the son of Italian immigrants who came to Australia as young adults in, I would guess, the late 1950s. His father worked as a carpenter, he worked hard and made sacrifices and ended up owning 5 houses while raising 5 children. And good on him. He had the opportunity to work hard and make money and invest that money.

    Fast forward to 2017. One of my friends at work asked me a question. Now he is a recent non-European immigrant (within the last 2 or 3 years) and came to Oz in his early thirties. He is one of the smartest, most focused and diligent, most highly-skilled, most hard-working people I have had the pleasure of working with in IT. He asked me "what should I do, I will never be able to afford to buy a house in Sydney and I don't want to retire with nothing. Should I try to buy a house in the countryside? In another state?". Frankly I think he is dreaming if he thinks he can even afford that. Just like my friend's Italian immigrant father he gets the opportunity to work lots of overtime - but in 2017 with so much competition for the few jobs available employers only need to pay low salaries and can expect employees to work unpaid overtime.

    Our message to immigrants should not be "come to Australia and be part of the new underclass". Or "Study IT at great sacrifice for your parents, study hard for years and years, get a Masters Degree, so you can come to Australia and drive a taxi, because successive governments listened to industry lobby groups talking up a skills shortage that doesn't exist".

    I don't expect that everyone should have equality of outcome, I don't think any of us do. But governments need to address issues of structural inequality.

  10. #79
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    Default Re: Why income/wealth equality is getting worse

    Quote 142857 said View Post
    One example I can think of. A good friend who I used to work with in IT was the son of Italian immigrants who came to Australia as young adults in, I would guess, the late 1950s. His father worked as a carpenter, he worked hard and made sacrifices and ended up owning 5 houses while raising 5 children. And good on him. He had the opportunity to work hard and make money and invest that money.

    Fast forward to 2017. One of my friends at work asked me a question. Now he is a recent non-European immigrant (within the last 2 or 3 years) and came to Oz in his early thirties. He is one of the smartest, most focused and diligent, most highly-skilled, most hard-working people I have had the pleasure of working with in IT. He asked me "what should I do, I will never be able to afford to buy a house in Sydney and I don't want to retire with nothing. Should I try to buy a house in the countryside? In another state?". Frankly I think he is dreaming if he thinks he can even afford that. Just like my friend's Italian immigrant father he gets the opportunity to work lots of overtime - but in 2017 with so much competition for the few jobs available employers only need to pay low salaries and can expect employees to work unpaid overtime.

    Our message to immigrants should not be "come to Australia and be part of the new underclass". Or "Study IT at great sacrifice for your parents, study hard for years and years, get a Masters Degree, so you can come to Australia and drive a taxi, because successive governments listened to industry lobby groups talking up a skills shortage that doesn't exist".

    I don't expect that everyone should have equality of outcome, I don't think any of us do. But governments need to address issues of structural inequality.
    One very easy way to eliminate overtime and still have workers needing to work 50 hours or more a week to survive requires cooperation across the economy. If two employers each employ a worker on 50 hours per week they have to pay a large amount of overtime. The problem for the employer can be solved if they each agree to employ both workers for 25 hours each per week. Thus the problem of overtime is eliminated. of course it requires extra travel time by the workers but that is an externality.
    Its really brilliant.
    Superannuation and sick pay, maternity leave and so on can be discarded (illegally of course) by simply having the worker as a subcontractor with an ABN.

    Edit if this seems cynical, all we have to do to the above to reflect the current reality is to take out the requirement for an agreement between two employers and simply recognise that this is the new normal status quo in the economy generally.
    Last edited by wadaye; 8th August 2017 at 08:02 PM.
    "I'm an ape, I'm an African ape and I'm proud of it, and you should be too". Richard Dawkins

  11. #80
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    Default Re: Why income/wealth equality is getting worse

    Quote wadaye said View Post
    One very easy way to eliminate overtime and still have workers needing to work 50 hours or more a week to survive requires cooperation across the economy. If two employers each employ a worker on 50 hours per week they have to pay a large amount of overtime. The problem for the employer can be solved if they each agree to employ both workers for 25 hours each per week. Thus the problem of overtime is eliminated. of course it requires extra travel time by the workers but that is an externality.
    Its really brilliant.
    Superannuation and sick pay, maternity leave and so on can be discarded (illegally of course) by simply having the worker as a subcontractor with an ABN.

    Edit if this seems cynical, all we have to do to the above to reflect the current reality is to take out the requirement for an agreement between two employers and simply recognise that this is the new normal status quo in the economy generally.
    Are you aware of the fair work act and various industry awards and agreements?

    I'm not an employer and i'm all in for improving the income, conditions and benefits of basic wage and casual workers but in my view this vaguely Marxist ideological bullshit impedes more than improves. It's waffle, mate.

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