Michael Moore: "America Is NOT Broke"

Discussion in 'Lounge' started by grab_grab_the_haddock, Mar 7, 2011.


Michael Moore Should Be Canonized

  1. Hell Yes!

    2 vote(s)

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  1. grab_grab_the_haddock

    grab_grab_the_haddock The Voice Of Reason Established Member


    Contrary to what those in power would like you to believe so that you'll give up your pension, cut your wages, and settle for the life your great-grandparents had, America is not broke. Not by a long shot. The country is awash in wealth and cash. It's just that it's not in your hands. It has been transferred, in the greatest heist in history, from the workers and consumers to the banks and the portfolios of the uber-rich.

    Today just 400 Americans have the same wealth as half of all Americans combined.

    Let me say that again. 400 obscenely rich people, most of whom benefited in some way from the multi-trillion dollar taxpayer "bailout" of 2008, now have as much loot, stock and property as the assets of 155 million Americans combined. If you can't bring yourself to call that a financial coup d'état, then you are simply not being honest about what you know in your heart to be true.
  2. mountain_rage

    mountain_rage Zeropaids nipple Staff Member Moderator

    For those who don't quite understand this concept. If the GDP was more fairly dispersed among the American public, wages could be increased 50% across the board. Through lobbying and marketing, America has allowed the ultra rich to slowly increase the cut they take home. Countries have a limited ability to produce, and this production is represented in the GDP. When one individual takes home 10 billion a year, it comes from the pockets of those making 30, 20, 10$ an hour.
  3. Atheist Icon

    Atheist Icon Member Established Member

    1. Wealth Envy - Check
    2. Class Warfare - Check
    3. Wanting to steal, er tax, private property - Check
    4. Realizing that we are broke(as a nation) and cannot afford the entitlement programs we have in place or ANY government programs - Refer to #1.
  4. Drew Wilson

    Drew Wilson AKA IceCube Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    Yeah, personally, I think the system is definitely broken. It's not necessarily from wealth envy derived from the crabs in a bucket syndrome being pushed on to the masses, but the system in place now is effectively paying large corporations big money to ship jobs out of the country in the first place. I'm looking at the US and thinking, if every job that went to places like India, China and a host of other countries came back to the US, how many people would that pull out of the unemployment lines?

    It seems that in some cases, big corporations are getting huge tax breaks to stay in the country while they do everything to move high paying jobs out to lower income earning countries. When someone takes a stand, the corporation in question just threatens to pull out completely - thus allowing the corporation to have the government be wrapped around their finger. It's a lot like the humor about medication, when do you want to be screwed? Now or later?
  5. grab_grab_the_haddock

    grab_grab_the_haddock The Voice Of Reason Established Member

    1 - regurgitation of meaningless fox news cliches - check
    2 - failure to rtfa - check
    3 - conspicuous lack of any rational argument - check
    4 - utter retardation - double check
  6. mfgbypooter

    mfgbypooter Super Pooper Staff Member Moderator

    lmao - check

  7. Atheist Icon

    Atheist Icon Member Established Member

    1. Yup, because it is evident...that I watch Fox News...or is it Faux News, or Foxkkk News.
    2. Real Time Fracking Acceptance? Really The Fox Annihilation? No idea what that acronym stands for.
    3. Yeah, because that money/property wasn't mine in the first place right? Don't give me the BS argument, "Well, move to Somalia...you'll like it there."
    4. If you have to resort to name calling, you already lost. Period.

    Now, you honestly think posting a link to the "speech" that Michael Moore gave wasn't going to be criticized? Come on, you really think that he speaks the truth? Really? How are we not broke? I could have sworn that big debt clock on the Durst building was showing how broke we are. Or is it showing the National Lottery? If it is, I need to get in on that. Woohoo 14 Trillion...I could live forever!

    Michael Moore is ignorant, a truther, a fraud, a blow hard, and a film school dropout. Who incidentally, got lucky, very lucky in the capitalist system he resents. I will never understand someone who uses the system only to rail against it.

    Michael Moore's "speech" just goes to show you how ignorant some lefties are. You cannot get something for free without someone else doing without when the gov't is involved.

    The collective bargaining portion of the bill for public sector workers should have never, ever, ever, been allowed. Even the left's hero, Jimah Cartah, killed collective bargaining for the Federal Employees. I don't hear any Union chants at 1600 Penn Ave about that...

    Even FDR stated that it was "unthinkable and intolerable" for public sector unions to exist. When government unions strike, they strike against Taxpayers, not the "EVIL" corporations. If you want unions to live fat, have them do it in the private sector. Bleed companies dry, I don't care, do not bleed me, the Taxpayer, dry.

    And on to the "Evil, Child Killing, Kitten drowning, Puppy Electrocuting, Red-Neck, KKK loving, Fat Cat, umm, Fat KKKat, White, Mentally Ill raping, Evil" people with money. Did I put enough Evil's in there? Let me try it again:

    "And on to the "Evil, Evil Child Killing, Evil Kitten drowning, Evil Puppy Electrocuting, Evil Red-Neck, Evil KKK loving, Evil Fat Cat, Evil umm, Evil Fat KKKat, Evil White, Evil Mentally Ill raping, Evil Evil, Evil Evil" people with money." That should do it.

    You could confiscate, er steal....no, wait, tax, the wealthy into oblivion(I know you salivate at that thought), and you wouldn't even cover the deficit this YEAR alone. Allah, Satan, God, Jesus, Mohammed, Krishna, etc, knows we haven't had enough spending by the government. I mean, we need 2 or 3 Trillion a year deficits...and then blame the Evil, Evil, people that have money, for having money. That will solve everything.
  8. sygreenblum

    sygreenblum Member

    Not to incur any name calling but my personal belief is we are in fact broke, we just haven't excepted it yet. And Michael Moore is hardly a credible source. Talk to your CPA and ask him/her what they think, the people who actually know what the fuck their talking about. There will be a reckoning for our wastefulness, it's just a matter of time.
  9. grab_grab_the_haddock

    grab_grab_the_haddock The Voice Of Reason Established Member

    No, it shows the total national debt. Contrary to what Glen Beck might have told you, that’s not the same thing as showing how “broke we are”. Debt will only break an entity which can’t service the debt. Now it’s true the debt can’t be serviced by a government which insists on wasting grotesque sums of money on military spending at the same time as rolling out huge tax breaks for big business and the super wealthy. What’s needed is a fair taxation system, which promotes investment in essential services and infrastructure .
    A great philosopher once wrote “If you have to resort to name calling, you already lost. Period.”
    No doubt supporters of Gadaffi can’t understand why people in his nation “use” his “system” to “rail against it”. Nations generally don’t come with a wide choice of economic systems, Moore merely does his best in the imperfect system he finds himself in.

    I looked for the place in the article where he said that and didn’t see it. Maybe you can point me in the right direction?

    Once again with the drama. Do you have any actual examples of unions “bleeding the taxpayer dry”? You are aware that public sector employees typically earn 10% less than those with a similar level of education and experience working in the private sector?
    Sounds like union employees are giving the taxpayer a good deal…
    Don’t stop there dude, with a few more adjectives I’m sure you can blow enough smoke to hide the fact that you have no facts and no arguments.
    If calling for progressive action on taxation makes me a wealth envying, class warring, castro-loving commie then I’m glad to stand shoulder to shoulder with other, committed Marxists such as Warren Buffet, Bill Gates Sr and Stephen King. Seriously dude, you need to read more widely – Glen Beck and the drudge report are not the only sources of information.
  10. sygreenblum

    sygreenblum Member

    What? Is this a joke? I don't mean any hostility but reading grab_grab_the_haddock's previous posts you are by far the biggest name caller of them all. For right or wrong.
  11. Atheist Icon

    Atheist Icon Member Established Member

    How is the debt not breaking us now? We spend, what, 250 - 400 Billion a year servicing the debt? That is just interest payments. Not even taking care of the principal. It will gobble up every bit of gov't spending. It's not if, but when.

    Military spending - call you congressman, or woman, and tell them to bring home every soldier, from every base, in every country. Tell that congressperson to then tell the rest of the world to FUCK OFF! We are not the police.

    If you want fair taxation, then have a tax on everyone, regardless of what they make, how they make it, and do not give a damn dime back. Something like a VAT tax on non essential items, at 35%. But get rid of the govt stealing from my paycheck every two weeks. I will be more than happy paying a 35% VAT tax because I do not purchase much more than groceries.

    You give me too much credit. Philosopher would be nice.

    You mean true revolutions sparked by seething hatred for an individual screwing everyone but himself over...couldn't understand why his system didn't work either....hmm....

    You know exactly what I meant, he is advocating higher taxes to pay the outrageous health and pension benefits of public sector union employee's. If you have to pay higher taxes, you are going to have to go without on something else. He was advocating that we are not broke. Last time I checked, if you spend more than you take in, you are broke.

    But those in Wisconsin are complaining that they would have to pay into their retirement, of which they pay none currently, and and paying, what, 12% of their medical costs, upped from 4 or 6%. Sounds like the taxpayer is getting ripped off. Anyone, with a job, knows that they are getting a sweet deal. Even with them paying in more.

    And if you think public sector employee earn 10% less, I have a ocean front property in AZ. My mother, working in DeCA, makes 100K a year to be a grocery manager. Yeah, try finding that in the private sector.

    No actually your hatred for anyone who has money is appalling. Progressive taxation hasn't worked and it isn't going to work now, it penalizes those that work. And at least Bill Gates actually gives his money away to do good work in other countries, where as you think the gov't should have his money to with as they please.
  12. carpefile

    carpefile Chronic Established Member

    Its a very convoluted, multi-faceted problem that can't be addressed by choosing simplistic straight up right versus left political sound bytes. Unions are fine for the private sector. There is a finite supply of money and a balance must be maintained between labor issues and the bottom line. If labor demands too much, the company fails and everybody loses. If the company ignores or abuses labor issues, the company fails and everybody loses. There should be no unions in the public sector, there is no balance to maintain, no finite supply of money. The taxpayer gets tapped for every shortfall so the politicians have every incentive to simply give labor what they want, particularly when labor votes put them into office.
    On the other hand the system in place is definitely broken beyond repair. The banks are in collaboration with the SEC and gov in general and are also robbing the taxpayers blind. Moore has some good points, but there is no single umbrella solution to these issues. Each facet must be addressed individually, with solutions designed to address each issue singularly. Doing away with public sector unions and seizing the assets of corrupt banks and their officers (and returning them to the taxpayers in cash) would be a good start in the right direction.
  13. grab_grab_the_haddock

    grab_grab_the_haddock The Voice Of Reason Established Member

    You are talking about a nation which has a GDP of around 15 trillion dollars, so the interest payments work out to around one sixtieth of GDP, something that needs to be dealt with, but the US has had larger debt in proportion to GDP in the past for example in the 1940s: https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/File:USDebt.png
    Besides, utilizing increased debt to increase government spending is the conventional way to get a nation out of recession, the real problem this time is that the GWB regime ran record deficits during a strong economy, leaving nothing in the piggy bank for when times got tough.

    You really think US troops are trying to “police” the world? Boy that’s cute. Do you still believe in Santa?

    False. The money which is paid into the employees’ pension plans is a deferment on wages: this is money the employees would otherwise be paid as part of their salary, but have chosen to have paid into a professionally managed 401k account.
    See the link below for a full explanation:

    See the link above, health insurance also comes from employee’s wages.

    Nice anecdote, but did you even look at the link I provided in my last post? It was to a paper published by the national institute on retirement policy. I’ll make things real easy for you, so you don’t even have to click a link; here is one of the conclusions to their report.

    Wages and salaries of state and local employees are lower than those for private-sector workers with comparable earnings determinants (e.g., education). State employees typically earn 11% less; local workers earn 12% less.” also “State and local employees have lower total compensation than their private sector counterparts. On average, total compensation is 6.8% lower for state employees and 7.4% lower for local workers, compared with comparable private sector employees.”

    Now I’m sure you think you know better than economics PhDs who are paid to do nothing but analyze such statistics, but kindly consider the possibility you may (once again) have been misled into believing something false.
  14. carpefile

    carpefile Chronic Established Member

    Really Grab? Shall we compare the salaries of public vs private school teachers (apples to apples) and see who makes more? And your tax.com guy blows a great smoke ring. Total compensation packages are all 100% employee funded, private and public sector alike.
    The issue which he totally ignores is the unfunded liability the public pensions represent. The state has pushed that cart down the road ahead for a long time. There's no money to fulfill them.
  15. Atheist Icon

    Atheist Icon Member Established Member

    Yup, Devil GWB(make sure you put that Devil part in front) increased the debt from roughly 5T to 10T in his two terms. Undisputed. Obama is doubling down! w00t! With the continuation of the failed bail outs of GM and Chrysler(2nd time) just being one of them.

    Oh its sweet that you see our Military members as cold-blooded killers, you must believe that Jeffrey Dahlmer was only trying to play hide and seek with the boys in his freezer.

    Again, if you feel that our military presence across the world is wrong, I do, then call your Congressperson and tell them to tell the world to FUCK OFF, we are not providing for their defense anymore.

    In the state of Wisconsin, what I stated was correct. I have been reading about these protests, laughing the entire time.

    Link: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704132204576190260787805984.html#articleTabs=article

    Since I know you probably will not click on it, excerpt:

    Ms. Sampson got a layoff notice because the union leadership would not accept reasonable changes to their contract. Instead, they hid behind a collective-bargaining agreement that costs the taxpayers $101,091 per year for each teacher, protects a 0% contribution for health-insurance premiums, and forces schools to hire and fire based on seniority and union rules.

    While it might be a bold political move, the changes are modest. We ask government workers to make a 5.8% contribution to their pensions and a 12.6% contribution to their health-insurance premium, both of which are well below what other workers pay for benefits. Our plan calls for Wisconsin state workers to contribute half of what federal employees pay for their health-insurance premiums. (It's also worth noting that most federal workers don't have collective bargaining for wages and benefits.)

    That was with 13 secs of searching.

    Ah, so because my anecdote goes against what you are saying, it's automatically wrong. DeCA stands for Defense Commissary Agency, every person working in this building is a Gov't employee. When Obama signed the 2 year freeze on Gov't pay, my mother was affected. Do not say that a Gov't worker is not a public employee, last time I checked Gov't/Public worked for the taxpayers.

    Yup, because lets trust everyone that has a College Degree...like that hasn't steered us wrong...ever. Devil GWB, one example.
  16. grab_grab_the_haddock

    grab_grab_the_haddock The Voice Of Reason Established Member

    Well you need to provide some evidence that this is an apples to apples comparison, do private school teachers generally have the same level of education and and experience as public school teachers (# of advanced degrees etc?). As someone who has worked in education I can tell you the impression is that private school teaching is an easy option for teachers who weren't quite tough enough to handle the rowdier, less biddable kids in public schools and the rigors of state testing.

    The report I linked to was one of several which show the same thing - that public sector employees earn less than private sector employees with similar levels of education and experience, I can link to others if needs be. It's easy to be sniffy about such reports especially because they contradict what the media tell us over and over, but what evidence do you have they are wrong? A hunch? Sheer guesswork? Or what?

    To address the broader issue you seem to be hinting at, do you really think the solution here is to reduce wages for public school teachers to the same level as those in the private sector? If not, why bring it up?

    I really don't think that was the point of the article. The claim being debunked was the widely disseminated media inaccuracy, here repeated by atheisticon, that Wisconsin public sector employees contribute little to their pensions. The article simply pointed out that because their pensions are drawn from deferred wages the employees literally contribute 100%. Paying for something out of my own wages is manifestly not the same thing as having the taxpayer foot the bill.

    Oh and yes I know, the wages are also paid for by the taxpayer, but then the debate would then be about reducing wages rather than reducing "entitlements" a policy much harder to put a positive spin on.

    Actually this is explicitly addressed in the article. Several times. The issue is not about cutting "entitlements" or "benefits" or even pensions or health insurance - the issue is about cutting salaries.

    The answer here is pretty complex, it has something to do with the economic downturn, but economic convention is that governments purposely run deficits during a downturn then pay them back when the economy picks back up. By the way how is that financial austerity and budget balancing thing working out in Ireland? What about the UK which has just shed half a million public sector jobs? The answer is that it’s not working. It hasn’t worked before and it won’t work this time. You don’t austerity your way out of recession, you get out of recession by making sure people have money to spend and by investing in things which provide jobs and value to people.

    The problem also has something to do with tax cuts for the wealthy – ongoing in Wisconsin for a number of years and I note that Walker has more planned, must be more of that “shared pain” huh? As David Cay Johnston also states reductions in the number of tax audits on corporations has also made it more difficult to raise finances.
  17. grab_grab_the_haddock

    grab_grab_the_haddock The Voice Of Reason Established Member

    You still don't get the point. I linked you to an article which proved that media reporting on pensions and health insurance for Wisconsin public sector workers has been inaccurate, and your response is a link to a media article peddling the precise inaccuracy the article debunks.

    Let's try this again, and this time I will go slowly so the point has a chance to sink in. Your claim was that Wisconsin public workers pay little toward their pensions. My rebuttal was that you were wrong because the pensions are taken in the form of a deferment on wages, that is the employees, rather than having their full wages paid into the bank every month instead have a portion paid into a 401k account which is manged on their behalf. How do we know this is true? Because the contracts for Wisconsin public employee workers are public documents which are available for download.

    Read the link I posted again (or rather, read it for the first time) then when you understand the point feel free to rejoin the debate.

    I don't think it's wrong, I think it's cute. It's exactly what it is; an anecdote, which doesn't by itself prove a damn thing.

    Not sure what you're blabbering on about here. I didn't say government workers weren't public employees.

    Now I know you're not as big a moron as donwebb, so please don't act that way. You are not being asked to trust "everyone that has college degree". You are being asked to evaluate the evidence I provided. Is the conclusion of the report inaccurate? If so, why? Do you have any evidence that your own opinion may be true? If so what is it? I've provided my citations, where are yours?
  18. Atheist Icon

    Atheist Icon Member Established Member

    So, its still the taxpayer funding their pensions, health care, and their paychecks.


    Find me a Produce Grocery Manager in the Private sector that makes as much as a GS-14 Step 7. Chances are, you won't.

    I'm not sure either...but I still didn't hear the Federal Employee's bitch and moan as much as the Wisconsin Unions did and are still doing, with taking a pay cut.

    Well, thanks for the comment...I guess. And I guess any of my conclusions for or against the situation at hand has either been reading news sites, independent analysts, etc., that are readily available for view on the internet. From reading those aforementioned sites, blogs, etc., I form my own opinion which obviously conflicts with yours.
  19. carpefile

    carpefile Chronic Established Member

    My sister is a teacher, with a 4 year teaching degree. She hasn't landed a permanent position thus far, so she subs pretty much anywhere she can, including both private and public schools. She makes roughly 40% higher pay when teaching at public schools. She isn't eligible for benefits or retirement perk due to the temporary nature of her employment, so the actual disparity is probably substantially higher.

    The "widely disseminated media inaccuracy" is a dance of semantics. The way the game is played is that raising public employees current take home salaries would break the budget, so to avoid that unhappy reality, the money is instead added to the backend of their contracts, their pensions. This allows them to kick that can down the road and somebody else can deal with paying that piper later.
    This means that the public employees get their pensions funded completely(theoretically, since that money doesn't actually exist) with no impact what so ever on their current income. In effect, they get their retirement with zero contribution from their paycheck.
    See how that works?

    And yes, I think that public sector jobs should be compensated roughly on par with their private sector counterparts, including benefits and pensions. That is to say, public teachers should be receiving approximately the same kind of total compensation package as private teachers. GSA accountants should be receiving approximately the same kind of total compensation package as private industry accountants. DOT surveyors should be receiving approximately the same kind of total compensation package as private industry surveyors, etc. etc.
    Otherwise how can public sector positions be justified to exist at all if private industry can do the same jobs cheaper?

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