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My weekend and local government
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besson3c
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Jul 20, 2010, 09:18 PM
 
This last weekend we traveled back to my wife's hometown in Minnesota to a private and very emotional family event prompted by a death in the family. It was our first time back since 2005. In 2007 this little town of about 1600 people suffered a catastrophic flood that nearly wiped out the entire town, so it was also our first time seeing how the town has recovered from this.

This trip made me appreciate the idea that local government is the most important of all government, and the government most worth tracking and participating in. I've sort of ignored my local government throughout most of my life since it never seemed to affect me, but now I'm certainly rethinking this.

This experience also hit home how incredibly important government, particularly local and state government is to all of us. The timing of this trip was sort of interesting since prior I've been reading the usual barrage of threads and posts in here about how government sucks. I realize that this is by far and large directed at our federal government, but I sense that this is not always completely compartmentalized.

The flood that hit this town literally covered most of the town, and obviously hit the local economy quite hard. The flood not only affected the downtown, but several surrounding farms. This town is in a very beautiful location surrounded by rolling bluffs and very scenic overlooks. One of drivers of its economy is tourism. There is a great bike trail that connects several towns that was recently constructed by the government, it has also helped tourism. Obviously, tourism would have been nearly impossible to rebuild if it weren't for local, state, and federal funding, and these government agencies working in cooperation.

We spoke to many people in the town who knew and kept in close touch with this family member, and heard from many about how the flood affected them. Some criticized FEMA, some received FEMA funds and were not as critical. Several received state funding. Most of them agreed that in a way this flood was an opportunity to wipe the slate clean and begin some new construction projects rather than trying to recreate or restore the old. We saw a few new businesses, several renovated or new houses, and other development such as a new community center. Some commented that it would probably take 10 years in total to completely recover from a disaster this bad. This was a once-in-several-lifetimes sort of freaky flood that was completely historical to this town, the amount of rainfall was quite freaky and simply too much to withstand. This town is not in a particularly flood prone area.

In addition to helping bail out some businesses and some individuals, local government is extremely important to this town in making it a worthwhile place to live, which is somewhat difficult given its lack of resources. Minnesota in general is great about building and maintaining wonderful parks, trails, waterfronts, etc. Edin Prairie, MN was recently voted as the best place in the USA to live (whatever the criteria was, I haven't checked, nor have I any particular opinions about whether this title is warranted).

In other words, a lesson for me was that local government can make a place worthwhile to live or visit, or just a truck stop dump. I don't think I'd want to live in a place that didn't have some beautiful parks, inspiring beautification/development, culture, etc. and if I was to live in a small town like this a vibrant community would also be important, while a local government can help shape and maintain. Even if you disagree with all of this and what the role of local government should be, these sorts of projects help create tourism and help a city/town grow - they can quite literally be investments and an asset to the economy in the long term. For instance, some business owners in this town have noticed a definite increase in traffic and business as a result of the bike trail. I'm personally happy to pay taxes for these sorts of projects.

Anyway, I'm not attacking any poster or ideology really. I'm hoping that most of this is pretty agreeable, I have noticed that the greatest vitriol is usually reserved for the federal government, but that being said, I think that some of people's low opinions about the feds may leak over into government in general?

Does anybody disagree that local and state government can be very important, and that it is important that this area of government be comprised of solid leadership and equipped with the resources it needs?
     
smacintush
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Jul 21, 2010, 02:48 AM
 
Our system of government was intended to focus power among the state and local authorities. They are better equipped to serve their constituents and are easier for the people to control. Nearly all of the government "services" that people deem to be most important to them are at the state and local level. Just imagine what state and local governments could accomplish without the oppressive federal monopoly looming over their heads, or the oppressive federal taxes. I think most of the small-government people here will probably agree.

That being said…

Many of the things you describe are things I don't see as any more appropriate to the local government than they are to the federal. I also disagree that without this "awesome" local government that an area will probably go to shit.

IMO, the town, the state, or the federal government shouldn't be bailing out any local businesses who have suffered through a disaster. It was their choice to take the risk of investing in a business, they should be expected to rely on their own funds or private insurance. If they have no money, or choose not to purchase adequate coverage, or even if they can't find an appropriate policy. That's too bad. I don't have a problem with local rescue services helping in the immediacy (is that the right use of that word? ) of the disaster, but when it comes to private property…no.

I am also against any form of central planning. Central planning is antithetical to individual rights even if it does sometimes help, which I'm not convinced it does. Let's take your bike trail example: A few anecdotes about how it's improved traffic isn't very convincing. I would need to see proof of a net benefit. How much did it cost vs. the true net financial benefit? And no, I wouldn't accept statistics compiled by those in government that sponsored or supported the project who have a direct personal interest in justifying and validating their expenditures. Nevertheless, benefit or no, if a bike trail was desired the local businesses and residents can get together and do it themselves. Same goes for parks and whatever else. These things can be done entirely with private funds and private contracts.

You may be happy to pay taxes for these things, but not everyone is. By what right do you or people who agree with you have to force people's money (read: property) from them in order to finance policies that ultimately infringe on their property rights? (which is exactly what central planning does) Especially…as I eluded to earlier…when, if there are so many who are happy to pay for such things, there is nothing stopping you form getting together and paying for it yourselves without using government force to extort other's private property from them.
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besson3c  (op)
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Jul 21, 2010, 04:05 AM
 
Originally Posted by smacintush View Post
IMO, the town, the state, or the federal government shouldn't be bailing out any local businesses who have suffered through a disaster. It was their choice to take the risk of investing in a business, they should be expected to rely on their own funds or private insurance. If they have no money, or choose not to purchase adequate coverage, or even if they can't find an appropriate policy. That's too bad. I don't have a problem with local rescue services helping in the immediacy (is that the right use of that word? ) of the disaster, but when it comes to private property…no.
But this is both inactionable, impractical, and may not be economically sound in certain circumstances.

It is inactionable to expect that every business owner have full flood, fire, tornado, and any other insurance policy for the full value of the property when the likelihood of some of these disasters may be miniscule. It would be nice, but you just know that many won't. For those that won't, what is the cost to the economy and community in jobs lost in the event of one of these respective disasters? If putting in 1 million dollars to help this business out will bring in $5 million dollars within a few years to the local economy, wouldn't you want to do this?

I find that a number of the conservative viewpoints I've heard on this board are inactionable for similar reasons. For instance, somebody suggested that everybody learn enough about finance so that they aren't subject to fraud and abuse around them when it comes to bad loans or even doing business with companies with questionable accounting practices. All of this feels reasonable and seems like the most logical, but you just know that people are going to get themselves into trouble, and when they do, what is the cost to you? What is the cost to the rest of us? What are the consequences of just telling these people "tough break" and letting them fend for themselves? The hidden costs? I'm hoping that one day we will learn that a good economy is built with stability in mind, and not these massive upswings and downswings. This stability is established with appropriate safeguards and safety nets. There is a balance in this, obviously you don't want bloat with too much of this or overly generous welfare, but stability is small c conservative, which I'm certain any investor or financial planner will tell you is desirable.

I am also against any form of central planning. Central planning is antithetical to individual rights even if it does sometimes help, which I'm not convinced it does. Let's take your bike trail example: A few anecdotes about how it's improved traffic isn't very convincing. I would need to see proof of a net benefit. How much did it cost vs. the true net financial benefit?
Fair enough...

And no, I wouldn't accept statistics compiled by those in government that sponsored or supported the project who have a direct personal interest in justifying and validating their expenditures. Nevertheless, benefit or no, if a bike trail was desired the local businesses and residents can get together and do it themselves. Same goes for parks and whatever else. These things can be done entirely with private funds and private contracts.
Huh? How would residents and local businesses get together and do this themselves with land they don't own? Do you really think this will happen on its own? Do you really think that things like parks will just appear on their own because some residents want them and organize themselves to buy some land, organize the building and maintaining of the park despite having presumably no experience in doing this? I highly doubt this.

You may be happy to pay taxes for these things, but not everyone is. By what right do you or people who agree with you have to force people's money (read: property) from them in order to finance policies that ultimately infringe on their property rights? (which is exactly what central planning does) Especially…as I eluded to earlier…when, if there are so many who are happy to pay for such things, there is nothing stopping you form getting together and paying for it yourselves without using government force to extort other's private property from them.
Nothing except the sorts of issues I've already described. A government's job is to help oversee a healthy economy which is kept healthy by its surrounding infrastructure. You cannot really have a healthy economy with roads that are unsafe to drive on, no attractive property for businesses to grow and develop on, no safety measures such as fire hydrants and building inspections, etc.

I think you are going a little too far with the whole anti-government thing, don't you?
     
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Jul 21, 2010, 05:08 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
But this is both inactionable, impractical, and may not be economically sound in certain circumstances.

It is inactionable to expect that every business owner have full flood, fire, tornado, and any other insurance policy for the full value of the property when the likelihood of some of these disasters may be miniscule. It would be nice, but you just know that many won't.
Coverage for disasters whose likelihood are minuscule is usually relatively cheap. What business does anyone have taking a risk like this? Shouldn't you want to hold him accountable by letting him fail rather than sending the message that it's ok to be irresponsible, we'll collectively fix it?

For those that won't, what is the cost to the economy and community in jobs lost in the event of one of these respective disasters? If putting in 1 million dollars to help this business out will bring in $5 million dollars within a few years to the local economy, wouldn't you want to do this?
What makes you people think that the right to private property and personal responsibility is somehow subservient to some negative economic effect of a disaster? There is no right to economic security, or a right for a community to grow.

I find that a number of the conservative viewpoints I've heard on this board are inactionable for similar reasons. For instance, somebody suggested that everybody learn enough about finance so that they aren't subject to fraud and abuse around them when it comes to bad loans or even doing business with companies with questionable accounting practices. All of this feels reasonable and seems like the most logical, but you just know that people are going to get themselves into trouble, and when they do, what is the cost to you? What is the cost to the rest of us?
By what right do you claim that "we" have any say at all? This is an individual's private property done with as he sees fit. You don't have any moral claim on what someone else does with their private property or how they do it, nor do you have any right not to be effected by it. Economies are not created by the will of a benevolent entity for the benefit of mankind. They are the result of private citizens using their own property to earn money for themselves and you have no right to it or to control it.

What are the consequences of just telling these people "tough break" and letting them fend for themselves?
1. We don't pay for the failings of another person against our will with money extorted from us.
2. There is a far less incentive to take bigger risks, and less incentive for people who may not know what they are doing to "give it a shot".
3. Property rights and rule of law would be respected.

The hidden costs? I'm hoping that one day we will learn that a good economy is built with stability in mind, and not these massive upswings and downswings.
Economies can't be "built" from the top down.

This stability is established with appropriate safeguards and safety nets.
Really? On what do you base this? We have been trying for decades to do this and it hasn't worked. At what point do you admit that something hasn't worked and it's time for something different? So much for the scientific approach.

Huh? How would residents and local businesses get together and do this themselves with land they don't own?
They can pool their money and buy portions of land or negotiate contracts with rights to use portions of land. If you can't convince enough people or gerrymander a route to make this happen, you don't get a bike trail. Period.

Do you really think this will happen on its own?
No, I think it could happen by someone or some people getting together and making it happen. If you can't get enough people together you didn't really need one in the first place.

Do you really think that things like parks will just appear on their own because some residents want them and organize themselves to buy some land, organize the building and maintaining of the park despite having presumably no experience in doing this?
I think it can. Why not? What is so difficult about a park that it can't be learned? Is this a special skill that you get magically when they elect you? Is this a group of housewives and gas station clerks doing this or are there perhaps educated people in the town that could help or be paid to help? Why does it necessitate tax money and bureaucrats? Of course in a city where the zoning nazis are in the way it may be a little MORE difficult.

I highly doubt this.
Based on…?

Nothing except the sorts of issues I've already described. A government's job is to help oversee a healthy economy
It is not, on what do you base this? The government's job is to protect people from other people harming them. Economic regulation is something that has not been shown to be within their realm or their ability to undertake.

which is kept healthy by its surrounding infrastructure. You cannot really have a healthy economy with roads that are unsafe to drive on, no attractive property for businesses to grow and develop on, no safety measures such as fire hydrants and building inspections, etc.
I don't remember bringing any of those things up.

I think you are going a little too far with the whole anti-government thing, don't you?
Not anti-government…minimal government. And no…absolutely not. I believe rights are absolute. If right are not absolute, then you really have no rights at all as government can infringe on them or take them away as they see fit for the "greater good". All of these controls, regulations, central planning, bailouts etc. are infringements on other peoples rights for some perceived benefit of a group. Mob rule is something I can't abide by.
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Jul 21, 2010, 10:53 AM
 
There is a difference between the failure of an individual business (or even a small group of businesses) and a "systemic" collapse. The flood which besson describes that "nearly wiped out the entire town" seems more on the scale of the latter. I believe it is entirely within the role of government to help society prevent and recover from these kinds of incidents. Tragedy of the commons and all of that.

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Big Mac
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Jul 21, 2010, 11:07 AM
 
Sorry about your family's loss besson. Honestly, I'm sort of surprised to see it confirmed that you have a wife - no offense intended, honestly, but your sexuality seemed kind of ambiguous to me before.

Yes, you're right about local and state government being important. As smacintush says, state and local governments were supposed to be more important to Americans than the federal government. First, government closer to the people it serves should theoretically be better, and second, if you don't like your local government you can move to a different city; if you don't like your state government there are 49 others to choose from. But if you don't like the national government you're stuck.

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Jul 21, 2010, 12:58 PM
 
Originally Posted by smacintush View Post
Coverage for disasters whose likelihood are minuscule is usually relatively cheap.
I would be less worried about affordable coverage (especially if you had to pay less taxes in this scenario), and more worried about the insurance actually paying out. If government isn't taking a role in protecting disaster victims, then disaster victims have no leverage to hold insurance providers to their word. And in the case of a system-wide disaster, a private insurer might be hard pressed to come up with the funds, and highly tempted by strategic default.

In general, the free market works best with the law of averages, and system-wide catastrophes are where the law of averages doesn't apply, the exception that proves the rule.
     
besson3c  (op)
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Jul 21, 2010, 01:25 PM
 
Originally Posted by Uncle Skeleton View Post
I would be less worried about affordable coverage (especially if you had to pay less taxes in this scenario), and more worried about the insurance actually paying out. If government isn't taking a role in protecting disaster victims, then disaster victims have no leverage to hold insurance providers to their word. And in the case of a system-wide disaster, a private insurer might be hard pressed to come up with the funds, and highly tempted by strategic default.

In general, the free market works best with the law of averages, and system-wide catastrophes are where the law of averages doesn't apply, the exception that proves the rule.

A great point, one I was thinking of making later after posting this, but very well said.

The free market is great and all, but it's always been a little bizarre to me that some propose it as a solution to virtually everything that ails us, like a doctor with an obsessive fascination to a particular drug or treatment.
     
TheoCryst
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Jul 21, 2010, 01:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
A great point, one I was thinking of making later after posting this, but very well said.

The free market is great and all, but it's always been a little bizarre to me that some propose it as a solution to virtually everything that ails us, like a doctor with an obsessive fascination to a particular drug or treatment.
Agreed, and a point I've been trying to make to a friend of mine (who happens to idolize Ayn Rand). Let the free market regulate the average cases, and let the government deal with extremes. And that includes both highs and lows, crashes and booms. Government regulation should be used as a shock absorber to guard against the massive swings that a pure laissez-faire economy is prone to.

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smacintush
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Jul 21, 2010, 02:14 PM
 
Originally Posted by TheoCryst View Post
Government regulation should be used as a shock absorber to guard against the massive swings that a pure laissez-faire economy is prone to.
Well since laissez-faire has never been tried in this country or any other, what it is "prone to" is pure conjecture.

What we do know from history is that the heavily regulated "mixed" economy does not work to prevent any of the problems that it is supposed prevent, nor does it respect our individual rights. It shifts more power to the government and removes power and freedom from the people, encourages cheating and cronyism, creates monopolies, and stifles growth. All supposedly for the sake of "the people".

We also know that inherent in laissez-faire is the respect for people's rights and the rule of law.

in the words of Thomas Jefferson:
I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it.
Being in debt and celebrating a lower deficit is like being on a diet and celebrating the fact you gained two pounds this week instead of five.
     
besson3c  (op)
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Jul 21, 2010, 02:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by Big Mac View Post
Sorry about your family's loss besson. Honestly, I'm sort of surprised to see it confirmed that you have a wife - no offense intended, honestly, but your sexuality seemed kind of ambiguous to me before.

There are many things you don't understand about me (and I you), which is one of the reasons why I'd love for you to some day show some interest in understanding something about me. I feel like a rejected fanboy of yours! At least let me touch your butt...
     
besson3c  (op)
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Jul 21, 2010, 02:23 PM
 
Originally Posted by TheoCryst View Post
Agreed, and a point I've been trying to make to a friend of mine (who happens to idolize Ayn Rand). Let the free market regulate the average cases, and let the government deal with extremes. And that includes both highs and lows, crashes and booms. Government regulation should be used as a shock absorber to guard against the massive swings that a pure laissez-faire economy is prone to.

NIcely said! Extremes like Katrina and the like, which is another example that we could discuss here since we probably collectively know more about this damage than the flood I'm describing. Where would New Orleans be if everybody had to rebuild stuff on their own? That isn't a leading question, I don't really know how involved the government has been. Anybody?
     
besson3c  (op)
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Jul 21, 2010, 02:25 PM
 
Originally Posted by smacintush View Post
Well since laissez-faire has never been tried in this country or any other, what it is "prone to" is pure conjecture.
Why do you think that is?
     
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Jul 21, 2010, 02:55 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Why do you think that is?
Because corrupt governments can't bring themselves to afford their subjects that kind of freedom, and the philosophy of most of the free world is that of "I am my brother's keeper."

You can't have laissez-faire in a world where you expect others to bear the burden of your mistakes and misfortunes.

It's a sad state of affairs when people are afraid of being free.
Being in debt and celebrating a lower deficit is like being on a diet and celebrating the fact you gained two pounds this week instead of five.
     
besson3c  (op)
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Jul 21, 2010, 03:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by smacintush View Post
Because corrupt governments can't bring themselves to afford their subjects that kind of freedom, and the philosophy of most of the free world is that of "I am my brother's keeper."

You can't have laissez-faire in a world where you expect others to bear the burden of your mistakes and misfortunes.

It's a sad state of affairs when people are afraid of being free.

How is laissez-faire economics freedom, and not anarchy?
     
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Jul 21, 2010, 04:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
How is laissez-faire economics freedom, and not anarchy?
Really?

There is still the rule of law, that's how. Rights would be enforced…real rights as enumerated in the constitution. People would be protected by the government from the other people harming them…real, direct harm such as theft, fraud, assault etc.. There is still civil liability.

This is not anarchy.
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besson3c  (op)
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Jul 21, 2010, 04:11 PM
 
Originally Posted by smacintush View Post
Really?

There is still the rule of law, that's how. Rights would be enforced…real rights as enumerated in the constitution. People would be protected by the government from the other people harming them…real, direct harm such as theft, fraud, assault etc.. There is still civil liability.

This is not anarchy.

Exactly, which is where what you are saying becomes pretty circular, I think. Define theft and fraud in the context of economics.
     
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Jul 21, 2010, 04:57 PM
 
Originally Posted by smacintush View Post
Well since laissez-faire has never been tried in this country or any other, what it is "prone to" is pure conjecture.
Well, educated conjecture. I would say that mid-19th century America was as close as we got in terms of a mostly-modern economy.

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Jul 21, 2010, 05:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Exactly, which is where what you are saying becomes pretty circular, I think. Define theft and fraud in the context of economics.
Explain how you think it is circular.

You know damn well what fraud and theft are, you just want to use these as a jumping off point for a pro-regulation argument.

Fraud and theft are pretty cut and dry. You are taking others' property without earning it, i.e. against their will. It is deliberate, willful intent to separate people from their money/property against their will.

What we do today is create broad definitions of these things out of what really amounts to crappy service. I don't really think we should be legislating quality of service. I also don't think it is the government's duty to create rules and regulations with the supposed intent of preventing these things, any more than I believe we should let the government tell me how to conduct my daily life (e.g. curfew or personal space laws) in order to prevent me from robbing or harming someone.
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besson3c  (op)
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Jul 21, 2010, 05:20 PM
 
I have my opinion of what fraud and theft are, but it may be different than yours, that is my point.

To me, fraudulent mortgages = fraud and theft. Enron accounting practices = fraud and theft. Inflating the value of a stock via shortselling and derivative trading and stuff like that might be fraud and theft, if I understood this properly. Bank bailouts w/o an attempt to prevent this from needing to occur again = fraud and theft - possibly fraud and theft regardless. Bernie Madoff = fraud and theft. Buying political favors via campaign donations = a form of fraud.

The list goes on, but I bet there are things in there you agree and disagree with, right?
     
el chupacabra
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Jul 29, 2010, 12:49 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post

Huh? How would residents and local businesses get together and do this themselves with land they don't own? Do you really think this will happen on its own? Do you really think that things like parks will just appear on their own because some residents want them and organize themselves to buy some land, organize the building and maintaining of the park despite having presumably no experience in doing this? I highly doubt this.
Huh? The majority of bike trails, hiking trails, and parks aren't created by government.... and your asking if residents could establish this stuff? Community members get together all the time to create this stuff. The Equestrian Society in my area builds trails for horse back, mountain biking, hiking and so forth. Eagle scouts, do the same stuff. Ducks Unlimited has created all kinds of wet lands preserves that has lead to higher population of ducks, grebes and other wildlife. That's just off the top of my head, there's many more. Some of my own family members have bought land and established it as public parks. Very common. The neighborhood I live in here in texas has parks w/ free tennis courts, soccer fields, basketball courts, swimming pools, bike trails, lakes, ponds, a wildlife refuge, and golf courses all brought to us and built by EXXON. What was governments role in all this? They did what they usually do, get in the way, slow everything down, require permits, run up the cost with fees to sign off and stamp crap, meanwhile they don't know what the hells going on.

There are entire cities here built from scratch by companies and residents, One of them I know of was created by people who wanted to escape the the big local government... And it's the nicest town around here.

I must say though, the national park system is one of the feds successes, that couldn't have been accomplished any other way that I know of; I only wish they could do stuff like that today. Unfortunately they've become too incompetent.

A government's job is to help oversee a healthy economy which is kept healthy by its surrounding infrastructure. You cannot really have a healthy economy with roads that are unsafe to drive on, no attractive property for businesses to grow and develop on, no safety measures such as fire hydrants and building inspections, etc.
Problem is we have different ideas of what a healthy economy is: As a liberal your dream world is a world of massive bloated corporations, and everyone has an office monkey job for a corporation where they don't have to do any physical labor, just paper work and computer work.

To me though, the corporation concept is highly inefficient, unable to adapt quickly to change, requiring bailouts every time it can't keep up, the corporation can't function without some form of exploited slave labor either abroad, or by hiring illegals.

To me a healthy economy is an economy where large corporations are allowed to fail, so that smaller, local, efficient, quality service businesses can take over. But unfortunately the government tends to create an unfair playing field that caters to large corporations helping them squeeze out small business.
the largest problem for Americans today is they eat too much food and dont have enough work to do to keep their heart healthy
     
besson3c  (op)
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Jul 29, 2010, 01:34 AM
 
Originally Posted by el chupacabra View Post
Problem is we have different ideas of what a healthy economy is: As a liberal your dream world is a world of massive bloated corporations, and everyone has an office monkey job for a corporation where they don't have to do any physical labor, just paper work and computer work.

To me though, the corporation concept is highly inefficient, unable to adapt quickly to change, requiring bailouts every time it can't keep up, the corporation can't function without some form of exploited slave labor either abroad, or by hiring illegals.

To me a healthy economy is an economy where large corporations are allowed to fail, so that smaller, local, efficient, quality service businesses can take over. But unfortunately the government tends to create an unfair playing field that caters to large corporations helping them squeeze out small business.

Your post really took a nose dive here, I think. Why would you say that my dream world is a world of massive, bloated corporations? Not only do you not know me or understand me enough to make such a statement, this also just doesn't make much sense. Isn't your stereotypical liberal an opponent of big corporations?
     
el chupacabra
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Jul 29, 2010, 01:50 AM
 
nope, the only corporations liberal hate, or pretend to hate is oil companies. Liberals that run for office may tend to act like they're pro "consumer rights" (whatever that means) and going to stand up for the little guy; but when they get in power they do the opposite... Just look at the liberal bailout compared to the supposed republican bailout.

P.S. It should be noted Liberal republicans such as Bush are also no exception to the rule.
     
besson3c  (op)
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Jul 29, 2010, 01:53 AM
 
Originally Posted by el chupacabra View Post
nope, the only corporations liberal hate, or pretend to hate is oil companies. Liberals that run for office may tend to act like they're pro "consumer rights" (whatever that means) and going to stand up for the little guy; but when they get in power they do the opposite... Just look at the liberal bailout compared to the supposed republican bailout.

P.S. It should be noted Liberal republicans such as Bush are also no exception to the rule.

Are you talking about liberal politicians, or liberal individuals? I was assuming the latter, since you brought me into the picture. There are plenty of liberal individuals that generally dislike non-oil based large corporations, Walmart being one example.
     
el chupacabra
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Jul 29, 2010, 02:15 PM
 
Not bringing you into it besson. Just doing a little blanket statement to push some buttons. I do think what I said is true of most liberals though. Otherwise everyone wouldn't have been pro-bailout a year ago. Even most people here were saying "something has to be done (by government)." Not realizing that business would have really changed for the better if the toobigtofail had disappeared.

I have a bunch of points here: Ill try to not be too wordy.

An example of the federal government getting in the way of local government.
Federal Judge Neuters Arizona Immigration Law: What's Next? - Yahoo! News

I like this part.
Polls have shown repeatedly that a large majority of Americans support Arizona’s law and a new polls shows that similar majorities oppose the Justice Department’s decision to sue the State of Arizona. One can imagine that these voters are going to react negatively to this decision, although, of course, there’s not really much they can do about it since the matter is in the hands of the Court. Will it have an impact on the November elections, though ? That is what will be interesting to watch."

* Get Comfortable, People Mark Krikorian at National Review writes: "Everyone understood this would take several years and reach the Supreme Court. It’s a stupid way to make policy, but with ACLU lawyers (both those inside and those outside the government) fanatically committed to open borders, there’s no alternative."
The Arizona case is interesting because many nations require people to carry their documents around... it's not a big deal. Yet when a state actually tries to get-something-done here, the feds freak out.

I wanted to also put up a link I saw the other day about some mayors and what not in small California towns who made more money than Obama; but I can't find it. It was an example of how even local governments aren't immune to corruption.

You mentioned government's role in economic stability. But when our government encourages individuals and businesses to take out massive loans for fast expansion, is that really promoting stability? Or would stability more likely result if people did what smacintosh said: "not take risk they couldn't afford to begin with".

I don't believe in the gov bailout or insurance company concept either. Government profits from your taxes. Insurance profits from you, it's a middle man; it's a drain on the economy. I'm skeptical of this town you speak of "bailing out" people. Government never has money to spare, it's always over budget. So where'd they get the money for bail outs? I suspect they took out massive loans which will cause some kind of problems in the future leading to corruption or high taxes.

My solution would be, put the money you would be paying to taxes and insurance to your own emergency account. That way you don't worry whether your covered for fire, flood, hurricane, earthquake, tornado, landslide, sinkhole, vandalism, termites, blizzard, volcano, tsunami, meteor, y2k, terminators, chupacabras, whatever rare disaster comes along you can use that money because it's YOURS and there's no bureaucracy skimming off the top.

besson
To me, fraudulent mortgages = fraud and theft. Enron accounting practices = fraud and theft. Inflating the value of a stock via shortselling and derivative trading and stuff like that might be fraud and theft.... .. Buying political favors via campaign donations = a form of fraud.
These are things I agree with and would like to see government address. I'm disappointed at how they're approaching it however. When they see whats happening with derivatives, they should flat out ban certain practices, such as the constant buying and reselling of futures for profit with no intent to actually buy the underlying commodity that the future represents (what business does Joe boso have buying oil futures on the internet when he has no means to actually buy the oil). The reselling part should be illegal. But instead the government's idea is to convince us that it needs to expand so that it can try and oversee every wallstreet transaction.... Like thats even possible...
( Last edited by el chupacabra; Jul 29, 2010 at 02:21 PM. )
     
   
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