Welcome to the MacNN Forums.

If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed. To start viewing messages, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

You are here: MacNN Forums > Community > MacNN Lounge > Political/War Lounge > Pol Lounge General News Thread of "This doesn't deserve it's own thread"

Pol Lounge General News Thread of "This doesn't deserve it's own thread" (Page 63)
Thread Tools
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 11:30 AM
 
Originally Posted by Laminar View Post
That's why a lot of people believe it's up to the government to set the floor at a livable minimum wage, this way one company can't undercut everyone else by running their business like a meat grinder, churning through people like a disposable commodity and letting government social services like Medicaid, welfare, and food stamps make up for what they don't want to offer in pay and benefits.
If we force a living wage on the gig economy, the gig economy collapses (as Oreo noted).

So, all the drivers who were making not enough income now make no income. The corporation tanks, consumers no longer get the service, and if we’re talking about food delivery, the restaurants lose that patronage too.

Are you absolutely sure this is the best option?
     
reader50
Administrator
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: California
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 12:37 PM
 
If the gig economy services are of significant value to society, then we could beef up the social safety net to compensate for that type of employment. Essentially choosing to subsidize rather than being taken advantage of.

I'm not clear personally if such jobs bring a high enough value to society to justify it. I've never used a food delivery service, or Uber. I know many people do though.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 03:42 PM
 
I have a feeling the services can be shown to have value, the problem is the market value of the labor required is less than a living wage.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 05:28 PM
 
Looking over the Grubhub model, it seems to me a driver can make something approximating a living wage, but the driver needs to be full time, needs to hustle, and will benefit if they can figure out how to game a system.

Of course, anyone who can swing all those things can probably find a better paying job.



As an aside, before it slips, I don’t object to forcing these types of companies to clearly educate new drivers about how the insurance deal works. Not doing so is unquestionably (and rather shamefully) predatory.
     
Doc HM
Professional Poster
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: UKland
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 05:53 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Free[er] market.
So really it’s just a case of how much (er) you want?
So basically it’s just a case of how much or little socialism you want?
This space for Hire! Reasonable rates. Reach an audience of literally dozens!
     
Doc HM
Professional Poster
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: UKland
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 05:55 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post

Are you absolutely sure this is the best option?
It’s possible that longer term, yes it is the best option.
Short term gain is not always the best long term solution.
This space for Hire! Reasonable rates. Reach an audience of literally dozens!
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 06:30 PM
 
Originally Posted by Doc HM View Post
It’s possible that longer term, yes it is the best option.
Short term gain is not always the best long term solution.
Oh, I’m not questioning whether it’s possible. I’m questioning whether “possibly the best option” is enough justification to drop an anvil on the industry. If it’s say, “highly likely”, that’s another matter.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 06:35 PM
 
Originally Posted by Doc HM View Post
So really it’s just a case of how much (er) you want?
So basically it’s just a case of how much or little socialism you want?
In general, it’s a case of which entity, the market or government, makes for the least shitty outcome.
     
Waragainstsleep
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: UK
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 07:01 PM
 
I think theres an issue that there is money in the system going to the wrong places. The people at the top have become substantially richer during this pandemic. They were already becoming substantially richer before the pandemic. So if the folks running these corporations are making obscene amounts of cash, then there is money in the systems that could be going to those at the bottom instead of the top. The question is whether its enough to give them a living wage or not.

Amazon is clearly the Prime(!) example of this. Bezos has made ludicrous money during the pandemic, its probably more than covered what he lost in his divorce settlement. But Amazon is so huge, could those tens of billions cover the warehouse workers and delivery drivers to the tune of a wage increase and better working standards? And probably more of them required to cover those new standards too?
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
Thorzdad
Moderator
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Nobletucky
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 08:12 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
In general, it’s a case of which entity, the market or government, makes for the least shitty outcome.
It’s not an either/or choice.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 08:35 PM
 
Originally Posted by Thorzdad View Post
It’s not an either/or choice.
I unreservedly agree.
     
OreoCookie
Moderator
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hilbert space
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 08:42 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
So, all the drivers who were making not enough income now make no income. The corporation tanks, consumers no longer get the service, and if we’re talking about food delivery, the restaurants lose that patronage too.

Are you absolutely sure this is the best option?
Other countries have minimum wage for restaurant workers (e. g. Denmark, I believe) and it seems to work well. My tip: next time you travel to countries, look at the countries with the highest and lowest tips. In Japan you don’t tip. Ever. You don’t even round up. Why? Because the income of waiters and cooks is covered by their wages. In countries where you need to tip, and often quite steeply (think 20 % like in the US or Canada), the wages are shit.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Free[er] market.
This isn’t 0 or 1, it is a sliding scale.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
In general, it’s a case of which entity, the market or government, makes for the least shitty outcome.
You seem to assume a zero sum game where the only outcome is varying level of shittiness. That’s not the case in my experience, in many areas government and market are symbiotic, where one thrives so does the other.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
I have a feeling the services can be shown to have value, the problem is the market value of the labor required is less than a living wage.
The market does what it can get away with. In the US many teachers need to supplement their wages, because their pay is so low. In most countries I am aware of, care work (e. g. hospitals, day care) have the shittiest working conditions and the lowest wages. Even when the market does not have enough workers, it is usually very reluctant to raise wages and improve working conditions. E. g. my mom’s old hospital over the years had to get more and more creative to find workers. They started in neighboring EU countries like Poland. Then neighboring non-EU countries (e. g. former Yugoslavian states). When my mom left, they tried to motivate workers from Mexico to come to Germany to become nurses, X-ray technicians, etc. Wages were never substantially raised. This isn’t just a market problem.
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 10:38 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
This isn’t 0 or 1, it is a sliding scale.
I agree, and will rephrase my point.

When thinking people use the term “free market”, they’re referring to a principle and not claiming the market is actually free.
     
OreoCookie
Moderator
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hilbert space
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 21, 2021, 11:38 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
When thinking people use the term “free market”, they’re referring to a principle and not claiming the market is actually free.
Not every (first-world) country has or wants to realize a free market economy. Germany, for example, doesn't, we have a social market economy, and the modifier “social” is meant to indicate that the economy is not a means to an end in and of itself, but should serve the people.

A lot of the things many Americans fear as “destroying” this or that have been successfully implemented elsewhere. For example, dollar-for-dollar Japan surely has way better cheap food at restaurants than the fast food joints in the US. (Although to be fair, Japan does also have a problem with working poor, too, especially women.)
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
Laminar
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Iowa, how long can this be? Does it really ruin the left column spacing?
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 22, 2021, 11:10 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
If we force a living wage on the gig economy, the gig economy collapses (as Oreo noted).

So, all the drivers who were making not enough income now make no income. The corporation tanks, consumers no longer get the service, and if we’re talking about food delivery, the restaurants lose that patronage too.

Are you absolutely sure this is the best option?
This is where we start talking about actual, good, socialized healthcare and UBI.

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/...sness-increase

This isn't meant to be one of those "redistribute his non-liquid net worth" /r/theydidthemath posts, but from a big picture view, some people are benefiting disproportionately off of the near-slave-wages of the working poor. I'm not saying he shouldn't be able to buy nice things. I'm not saying that he doesn't deserve to make a lot of money for having a great idea and implementing it successfully. I'm just saying we need to be mindful of the trajectory of inequality.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 22, 2021, 01:58 PM
 
I’m trying to wrap my head around $75 mil for one acre with a 12,000sf house.
     
Spheric Harlot
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: 888500128, C3, 2nd soft.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 22, 2021, 06:39 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
Not every (first-world) country has or wants to realize a free market economy. Germany, for example, doesn't, we have a social market economy, and the modifier “social” is meant to indicate that the economy is not a means to an end in and of itself, but should serve the people.
I really wish this were as clear here in Germany as you make it sound.

The CDU just voted Friedrich Merz for opposition leader…!
     
OreoCookie
Moderator
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hilbert space
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 22, 2021, 09:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
I really wish this were as clear here in Germany as you make it sound.

The CDU just voted Friedrich Merz for opposition leader…!
I agree with you in part, but I think it is still important to keep things in perspective. The starting point in Germany is quite different. For example, employees are stakeholders in Germany and can significantly influence company decisions (e. g. via Betriebsräte). You have a strong social safety net. And during the pandemic companies got government handouts so that people are not laid off. We can argue about all these measures (e. g. some big companies simply converted the government aid into additional profit), and certainly if a neoliberal and former Black Rock exec like Merz was in power, they might change the position of the slider.

Overall, you are totally right that we should not just believe in slogans and take things for granted. Every generation has to implement the ideals behind these slogans and develop institutions. Some of these changes I will agree with, others I will disagree with. And yet others I will initially agree with and then disagree with.
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
OreoCookie
Moderator
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hilbert space
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 22, 2021, 10:04 PM
 
Originally Posted by Laminar View Post
This isn't meant to be one of those "redistribute his non-liquid net worth" /r/theydidthemath posts, but from a big picture view, some people are benefiting disproportionately off of the near-slave-wages of the working poor. I'm not saying he shouldn't be able to buy nice things. I'm not saying that he doesn't deserve to make a lot of money for having a great idea and implementing it successfully. I'm just saying we need to be mindful of the trajectory of inequality.
I think you can be very pragmatic and non-ideological about this: if the wealth gap between rich and the rest crosses a threshold, most societies tend to become unstable. You see all sorts of signs everywhere, e. g. young people will delay having children and will have very little or no savings. I’m 40 and I still don’t have stable employment (I’m in academia, so my situation is special-but-not-special). Savings are small and in a few decades you will end up with tons of people who are poor and too old to work. My mother-in-law is 70 and still has to work, because she otherwise won’t have enough money to live off of.

In Chile, which was a neoliberal experiment by the Chicago school, this boiled over and ended up in mass protests where on some days I think 15 % of the population or so (!) was protesting on the streets. While it is the richest South American country, it has a huge wealth gap. Rich people need to live in gated communities.

Also from a monetary perspective, the current situation is bad. The ultra rich are “money sinks”, so they draw money out of circulation — you can only buy that many super yachts at a time.

I like the idea of UBI. It would cut so much fat (like means testing). Philosophically, it could be viewed as a dividend for a successful community. (E. g. Alaska has such a thing, although doesn’t call it UBI.)

One book that has influenced my thinking is Rutger Bregman’s Humankind. He questions the assumption that underlies many of the conservatives’ premises on human nature. He posits that rather than being greedy, being friendly and cooperative made us what we are and being more friendly gives us an evolutionary advantage.
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 22, 2021, 10:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
One book that has influenced my thinking is Rutger Bregman’s Humankind. He questions the assumption that underlies many of the conservatives’ premises on human nature. He posits that rather than being greedy, being friendly and cooperative made us what we are and being more friendly gives us an evolutionary advantage.
¿Por que no los dos?


Edit: being friendly and cooperative is an evolutionary advantage. So is being competitive and tribal. That’s why, as a species, we do both these things.

If evolutionarily speaking one strategy was significantly better than the other, natural selection would have favored it over the other. That hasn’t happened.
( Last edited by subego; Dec 22, 2021 at 11:37 PM. )
     
Brien
Professional Poster
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Southern California
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 23, 2021, 01:09 AM
 
I feel like UBI won’t take off ‘til post-scarcity economics and AI makes all of us unemployed.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 23, 2021, 01:49 AM
 
Originally Posted by Laminar View Post
This is where we start talking about actual, good, socialized healthcare and UBI.

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/...sness-increase

This isn't meant to be one of those "redistribute his non-liquid net worth" /r/theydidthemath posts, but from a big picture view, some people are benefiting disproportionately off of the near-slave-wages of the working poor. I'm not saying he shouldn't be able to buy nice things. I'm not saying that he doesn't deserve to make a lot of money for having a great idea and implementing it successfully. I'm just saying we need to be mindful of the trajectory of inequality.
In that vein, I’m not trying to make “market Darwinism” posts. We absolutely should be mindful of the trajectory of inequality. My point is the root cause of this trajectory is the changing value of labor over time. The reason these companies pay near-slave wages is because that’s what those jobs are actually worth. They used to be worth more. Just like a manufacturing job used to be worth more.

Just like the manufacturing jobs, all these low income jobs we’ve been talking about are going to go away. Some will go faster than others, but it’s inevitable. In America, we have more people than we have shit to do, and it’s only going to get worse. There probably isn’t a solution to this other than something resembling a UBI.
     
reader50
Administrator
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: California
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 23, 2021, 01:05 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
In America, we have more people than we have shit to do, and it’s only going to get worse.
At the moment, it's the other way around. We have 3 jobs for every 2 people looking for work. Few people want to take the low-end jobs, and Baby Boomer retirements are making it worse. It's becoming a problem for Social Security - fewer workers per each retiree.

The Social Security problem could be addressed by:
• Cutting benefits. Short-changing retirees.
• Increasing payroll taxes. Unfair to workers.
• Diverting other tax money to shore up SS. Congress hasn't acted on this.
• Increased immigration to fill the undesired jobs. More workers per each retiree. But immigration is opposed by many.

In my opinion, the 3rd and 4th are the best options. We should do some of both. But I suspect it will be the first three when Congress finally acts. Can't have too many immigrants looking for a better life doing nonstop crimes.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 23, 2021, 01:13 PM
 
Is the number of available jobs an indicator of total pounds of shit, or is it instead reflecting the granularity of our shit portions?
     
Laminar
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Iowa, how long can this be? Does it really ruin the left column spacing?
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 23, 2021, 02:42 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
In that vein, I’m not trying to make “market Darwinism” posts. We absolutely should be mindful of the trajectory of inequality. My point is the root cause of this trajectory is the changing value of labor over time. The reason these companies pay near-slave wages is because that’s what those jobs are actually worth. They used to be worth more. Just like a manufacturing job used to be worth more.
You can turn this into a circular argument - pay shit wages, consumption is reduced, demand is reduced, prices fall, wages effectively decrease. It's a direct result of the push for "trickle-down" policies in the '80s that were designed to lead to this exact scenario.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 23, 2021, 04:58 PM
 
That’s why I’m agreeing a UBI needs to come in sooner or later.
     
OreoCookie
Moderator
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hilbert space
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 23, 2021, 07:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Edit: being friendly and cooperative is an evolutionary advantage. So is being competitive and tribal. That’s why, as a species, we do both these things.
The entire chain of arguments is more complicated, and e. g. tribalism can be derived as a consequence of being friendly — to members of your group. I cannot recount the entire argument here, it’d be too long.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
If evolutionarily speaking one strategy was significantly better than the other, natural selection would have favored it over the other. That hasn’t happened.
According to book, that’s actually what the evidence shows: being friendly and cooperative conveys a net advantage and especially in primitive societies sociopathic behavior was very much shunned.

Anyway, I don’t want to derail this thread. My point is that the assumption by many that people are selfish and lazy should be at the very least critically examined.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
The reason these companies pay near-slave wages is because that’s what those jobs are actually worth. They used to be worth more. Just like a manufacturing job used to be worth more.
I think your entire premise is false: you conflate value with a job salary. Many forms of work were for a long time free, like care work. The ability of e. g. the other partner doing his job critically hinged on typically the woman doing care work, which was free. That low compensation for care work persists even though there is a severe labor shortage. If you think in terms of supply and demand, according to simplistic economic theory employers should increase salaries and benefits, and improve working conditions to attract more workers. Why aren’t they? It’s because simplistic economic theories and conclusions derived from them do not work.
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
OreoCookie
Moderator
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hilbert space
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 23, 2021, 07:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
At the moment, it's the other way around. We have 3 jobs for every 2 people looking for work. Few people want to take the low-end jobs, and Baby Boomer retirements are making it worse. It's becoming a problem for Social Security - fewer workers per each retiree.
A lot of states have this problem, and it is always easier to cut future benefits than benefits to current retirees.
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
In my opinion, the 3rd and 4th are the best options. We should do some of both. But I suspect it will be the first three when Congress finally acts. Can't have too many immigrants looking for a better life doing nonstop crimes.
Although I’d add that states (as in multiple countries) should pay attention to wealth gaps, too, and who is and isn’t paying taxes.


What I find very interesting is that a lot of conservatives see this refusal for many to return to shitty jobs as a failure of the Biden administration, when it seems entirely consistent with market economics they purport to support: if employers are having trouble to find workers, they need to improve conditions, raise salaries, etc.
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
Waragainstsleep
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: UK
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 23, 2021, 10:13 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
What I find very interesting is that a lot of conservatives see this refusal for many to return to shitty jobs as a failure of the Biden administration, when it seems entirely consistent with market economics they purport to support: if employers are having trouble to find workers, they need to improve conditions, raise salaries, etc.
This is not the only example of this. Conservatives are also enraged about cancel culture but thats no different. Its just the free market at work. You could say the same for evolution too. Many conservatives don't like the theory of evolution. Survival of the fittest is also just free market economics. Combined with heredity. Which most of them are absolutely fine with.
The root of the problem is they are just fans of what they are told to love. They don't really understand any of it. Many of them don't actually care. Its impossible to care about something if you don't understand it well enough to recognise it when its right under your nose.

In fact the free market is just one more thing they claim to care about but really don't. Along with democracy, family values, the military. Socialism too. That one they are meant to hate but again, since they don't know what it is, they miss it frequently. My body my choice = Good when its vaccines, bad when its abortions. They don't really care. They just parrot RW media messages like good little sheep.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 24, 2021, 02:10 AM
 
Isn’t the point of cancel culture denying entry into the marketplace? That doesn’t sound free market.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 24, 2021, 06:07 AM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
I think your entire premise is false: you conflate value with a job salary. Many forms of work were for a long time free, like care work. The ability of e. g. the other partner doing his job critically hinged on typically the woman doing care work, which was free. That low compensation for care work persists even though there is a severe labor shortage. If you think in terms of supply and demand, according to simplistic economic theory employers should increase salaries and benefits, and improve working conditions to attract more workers. Why aren’t they? It’s because simplistic economic theories and conclusions derived from them do not work.
The theory says if you undervalue labor, there’ll be a shortage of labor. German employers undervalue the labor of care workers, so there’s a shortage of care workers. Sounds like the theory got it exactly right.

The theory also says if these employers accurately value the labor of care workers by paying them more, it’ll improve the labor shortage. Are you arguing this theory is wrong and paying care workers more won’t improve the labor shortage?

Why aren’t German employers paying more? My suspicion is it’s because the labor value of care workers in Germany is determined by a planned economy and not a market one. That’s why Germany is resorting to farcical solutions like importing Mexicans rather than simply paying more. Employers pay employees what they’re worth, and this is what they’re worth in the health care economy planned by the German government.

In America, where the government plays a smaller role in determining the labor value of care workers, they get paid more. According to Google, an RN in America averages twice what an RN in Germany makes.
( Last edited by subego; Dec 24, 2021 at 07:11 PM. )
     
Waragainstsleep
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: UK
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 24, 2021, 08:22 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Isn’t the point of cancel culture denying entry into the marketplace? That doesn’t sound free market.
If people don't like racists, homophobes and transphobes, they won't buy whatever it is they're selling. Its the market deciding.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 24, 2021, 08:55 PM
 
If someone is let into the marketplace and people won’t buy from them, I don’t have a problem with that. That’s how it’s supposed to work.

What I have a problem with is people not being let into the marketplace.
     
OreoCookie
Moderator
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hilbert space
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 25, 2021, 03:16 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
The theory says if you undervalue labor, there’ll be a shortage of labor. German employers undervalue the labor of care workers, so there’s a shortage of care workers. Sounds like the theory got it exactly right.
It’s not just Germany, it is the UK, Switzerland, Japan, etc. All these countries crucially depend on immigrants to shore up shortages. I’m quite sure if I looked at the composition of workers in the care industry, I’d see an overrepresentation of women, of people of color and of immigrants, too. (E. g. I remember articles about teachers at US high schools who were hired out of the Philippines, because they didn’t find enough people to work at these wages.)
Originally Posted by subego View Post
The theory also says if these employers accurately value the labor of care workers by paying them more, it’ll improve the labor shortage. Are you arguing this theory is wrong and paying care workers more won’t improve the labor shortage?
Except that this isn’t happening, not just in Germany but everywhere. It isn’t just pay, but working conditions. In particular, understaffing and shift lengths and how much is counted as working time is contentious everywhere.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Why aren’t German employers paying more? My suspicion is it’s because the labor value of care workers in Germany is determined by a planned economy and not a market one. That’s why Germany is resorting to farcical solutions like importing Mexicans rather than simply paying more. Employers pay employees what they’re worth, and this is what they’re worth in the health care economy planned by the German government.
Like I wrote, this isn’t a German problem, but one that all developed economies face. I think care work is underpaid for reasons that have nothing to do with economic value in the way you think about it:

- Care work used to be mostly unpaid. But society (including the other wage earner!) were completely dependent upon it. Without that men would not have been able to work in those jobs “that were paid market-negotiated wages”, i. e. free labor was priced into household income.
- Women are overrepresented in the care sector and most parts of the economy are dominated by men who are mostly clueless about what it takes and how difficult it is.
- Care work is often done by people who strongly identify with their jobs and have idealistic motivations.

I think this very much the same everywhere. Valuing work what they think it is worth is very much subjective after all, and the people doing the judging tend to have little clue what is involved, they just took it for granted. There are other jobs that have created little value but have become highly paid. One example that comes to mind is banking. For a long time, much of banking was a boring, accounting-type job. Banking is infrastructure, so it is important, but it isn’t creating any value itself.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
In America, where the government plays a smaller role in determining the labor value of care workers, they get paid more. According to Google, an RN in America averages twice what an RN in Germany makes.
I think the calculus is much more complicated. For example, on average German teachers earn much more than American teachers. (For starters, they get paid 12 months per year ) Furthermore, the health care and university systems are very different. An American doctor will leave university hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt. In Germany, they won’t. Nurses will get paid while they are being educated (nurses are trained at vocational schools, not colleges). Lastly, salary is one thing, but e. g. many costs are shifted. In the US health care is mostly paid with your salary (i. e. your salary looks higher, but you have higher medical expenses) whereas in almost all other countries, it is deducted from your pay check and in part paid by the employer.

Looking at averages will also mask issues that care workers face in most countries: many urban centers have become extremely expensive (London, Paris, Berlin, San Francisco, New York, Munich, …), so expensive that people with regular jobs are really, really struggling. That is doubly true once these people have families.
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 25, 2021, 05:33 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
Except that this isn’t happening, not just in Germany but everywhere. It isn’t just pay, but working conditions. In particular, understaffing and shift lengths and how much is counted as working time is contentious everywhere.
An RN in Germany averages 30k a year (which is insulting).

Are you arguing the labor shortage would exist in the same quantity if they made 50k a year?
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 25, 2021, 08:22 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
I think the calculus is much more complicated.
If we take the RN example, I’m highly skeptical the calculus can account for wages in Germany being half that of America. Likewise, the calculus isn’t limited to a single direction. The RN in Germany is only making 21k after taxes.
     
OreoCookie
Moderator
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hilbert space
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 25, 2021, 10:55 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Are you arguing the labor shortage would exist in the same quantity if they made 50k a year?
Yes. Demand is super high and health care systems from different countries are competing for the same limited resource. You have German doctors migrating to Switzerland. You have Italian doctors and Polish nurses working for the NHS in the UK. Germany attracts

Just to give you an idea that the labor shortage is way more complex than salary: my mom was a “medical technical assistant” which sounds kinda basic, but is actually a higher qualification than an X-ray technician (she has that qualification as well). (Nowadays you can get a PhD in that subject apparently.) There is a single school in Munich that offers vocational training for that area, and if they were operating at 100 % capacity, they would not get close to satisfying demand in Munich.

Another example are midwives. There were a few court cases some years ago where midwives were found liable for complications during or after birth. Of course, they all have insurance, but as a result, insurance premiums have skyrocketed, but their remuneration has not been increased to make up for the difference in premiums. That forced many out of business. Note that both are government-mandated/-decided, the necessity to have insurance and the remuneration nurses get.

Yet another factor is burnout. This is a huge problem that stems from the high level of responsibility coupled with long working hours, having to work night and weekend shifts, and all the problems that stem from that. My mom would not have been willing or able to work in her job if we had been young. Still, money to most is not as important a motivator as in other professions.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
If we take the RN example, I’m highly skeptical the calculus can account for wages in Germany being half that of America. Likewise, the calculus isn’t limited to a single direction. The RN in Germany is only making 21k after taxes.
Speaking from experience, the average standard of living in most German cities is higher than in the US, because the difference between rich and poor is not as stark. A lot of things you need to pay for extra in the US is covered by taxes and the state. Education is a big one. Everything up to and including trade schools, colleges and universities is free. This alone is a six-figure amount per child. There is no financial risk due to medical bankruptcy. Etc. There are also quite a few things that do not count fully as salary. For example, German employers cover half of the medical insurance, the other half is deducted from your wages.

I’d be the last one to claim that people in care professions are paid adequately, but simplistically looking at a single figure, salary, is not capturing reality.
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
OreoCookie
Moderator
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hilbert space
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 25, 2021, 11:17 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
The theory also says if these employers accurately value the labor of care workers by paying them more, it’ll improve the labor shortage. Are you arguing this theory is wrong and paying care workers more won’t improve the labor shortage?
I’m saying that it is way more complicated than wages. I’ve given quite a few additional reasons in my previous post, which have nothing to do with salary.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Why aren’t German employers paying more? My suspicion is it’s because the labor value of care workers in Germany is determined by a planned economy and not a market one.
You are wrong in assuming that Germany’s health care system is a planned economy, Germany’s system does not work like Canada’s or the UK’s. It is a heavily regulated industry with mostly private participants. Essentially all insurances are private companies, albeit heavily regulated. (There is one that is a state-owned backstop health insurance company in a given region to insure access to health care for all people.) All doctors offices are private businesses. And many hospitals are private, too. (My mom worked in a private hospital, which was very famous worldwide amongst athletes, for example.) Others belong to cities, municipalities or are associated with universities.

The state is involved in many ways, e. g. when it comes to drug pricing which is centrally negotiated between drug companies and the German state who represents all insurances. That’s why drug prices in Germany are way cheaper than in the US. If a drug company fails to come to an agreement with the German state, they don’t qualify for reimbursement from any health care insurance company.

Of course, the German state does have a role, but it is mostly indirectly by capping medical spending: a few years ago they switched to per-case lump sum reimbursements (so-called DRG, diagnonses-related groups), which means that many hospitals need the right mix of illnesses and procedures so that they break even or, in case of private hospitals, make a profit. As usual, this is quite tricky, because e. g. global and local averages can be vastly different (rural areas serve an older clientele, and doctors spend a lot of time traveling to their patients, etc. etc.). Once you get into the weeds, the discussion gets complicated. But none of this has simple solutions.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
That’s why Germany is resorting to farcical solutions like importing Mexicans rather than simply paying more. Employers pay employees what they’re worth, and this is what they’re worth in the health care economy planned by the German government.
Like I wrote, this isn’t just Germany, there is a labor shortage in basically all developed countries in the care sector, including the US. A lot of the factors have zero to do with wages. One big one is simply demographics. A myopic focus on salary misses all those others.
Originally Posted by subego View Post
In America, where the government plays a smaller role in determining the labor value of care workers, they get paid more. According to Google, an RN in America averages twice what an RN in Germany makes.
Yet, there is a shortage of care workers in the US, too. Why?
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2021, 03:16 AM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
Yes. Demand is super high and health care systems from different countries are competing for the same limited resource. You have German doctors migrating to Switzerland. You have Italian doctors and Polish nurses working for the NHS in the UK. Germany attracts
In Germany, a GP averages 90k. In Switzerland they average 250k.

In Italy, a GP averages 93k. In the UK they average 162k.

In Poland, an RN averages 20k. In the UK they average 64k.

All figures are in euros.

Every example provided is from a lower salary to a significantly higher one.
( Last edited by subego; Dec 26, 2021 at 05:14 AM. )
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2021, 08:35 AM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
You are wrong in assuming that Germany’s health care system is a planned economy, Germany’s system does not work like Canada’s or the UK’s. It is a heavily regulated industry with mostly private participants.
My (honest) apologies for being too broad. What I meant to say is the price system the German health care economy uses is fixed as opposed to free. The economy’s price system is planned, not the means or ownership of production.

Most Germans have public insurance, and public insurance is a fixed price system. The government sets the price for services, not supply and demand. Judging by wages, the prices the government has set undervalue those services.
( Last edited by subego; Dec 26, 2021 at 06:49 PM. )
     
Laminar
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Iowa, how long can this be? Does it really ruin the left column spacing?
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2021, 11:25 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
What I have a problem with is people not being let into the marketplace.
What does this mean? Can you give some examples of people who were effectively canceled and how they were denied access to "the marketplace"? Al Franken? Is he barred from running for political office somehow? Milo Yiannopoulos being banned from Twitter? Can he not write books, or pamphlets, or secure speaking engagements, or work at Target?
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2021, 05:13 PM
 
What I mean is best encapsulated by the statement I made previously: deplatforming is not a free market principle.
     
Waragainstsleep
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: UK
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2021, 06:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
If someone is let into the marketplace and people won’t buy from them, I don’t have a problem with that. That’s how it’s supposed to work.

What I have a problem with is people not being let into the marketplace.
Laminar is spot on.
The cancelled claim they are being excluded from the marketplace but in truth they are misinterpreting what the marketplace actually is.
As far as I know, very artists get excluded from Apple Music, Amazon, Spotify, Soundcloud and YouTube. If any. Even if they were, they would be free to post their music on websites of their own making. Comedians who currently seem to be the most vocal whiners about cancel culture don't like the fact that Netflix doesn't want to pay them huge sums of cash to make specials once the public has turned on them for being obnoxious or insensitive or ignorant or whatever. Again, they remain free to book gigs at whatever establishments will have them, no doubt some smaller broadcasters would gladly entertain hosting them too.

Cancellation isn't really a thing. People's careers just get set way back when they turn out to be something their fans don't want to engage with any more.
Just because you have the right to think and say whatever you want, doesn't mean you should. This would be true regardless of whether there are consequences or not. But there are. People vote with their cash. Thats a key facet of free markets.

People are understandably pissed when they lose millions in income. Saying or doing awful things will alienate your customers. Demanding otherwise shows a terrible level of entitlement.

The comedy market is skewed left politically but thats not so different from the rest of the entertainment industry. My personal feeling is that the amount of travelling and collaboration involved exposes entertainers to more cultures and ideas and this naturally drags people leftwards. Making cheap jokes attacking women, gays, trans people or minorities is lazy, unoriginal and when you possess any decent amount of empathy and compassion, not funny. Picking that low hanging fruit to appeal to a noisy right wing section of social media might seem edgy at a glance, but its easy. People earning millions for telling jokes should expect to work harder than that if they want to keep doing so. Otherwise maybe have a word and see if Fox News wants to do a comedy hour.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
Spheric Harlot
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: 888500128, C3, 2nd soft.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2021, 07:06 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
What I mean is best encapsulated by the statement I made previously: deplatforming is not a free market principle.
How is not providing a platform for fascists and demagogues *not* a market strategy when your target demographic is overwhelmingly people with a vested interest in maintaining what remains of a stable democracy?

I can support your right to access the market, but refuse to help you sell your shit — whether I kick your product off my store/platform because i believe it’s shit, or whether I figure that I will lose customers if I continue to carry your brand of shit, doesn’t really make a difference.
     
Thorzdad
Moderator
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Nobletucky
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2021, 07:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Otherwise maybe have a word and see if Fox News wants to do a comedy hour.
They already tried. The ½ Hour News Hour. It wasn’t good. At all.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2021, 07:59 PM
 
Red Eye had its moments.
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2021, 09:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
I can support your right to access the market, but refuse to help you sell your shit — whether I kick your product off my store/platform because i believe it’s shit, or whether I figure that I will lose customers if I continue to carry your brand of shit, doesn’t really make a difference.
In a free market, the supply of a product is a function of demand. A participant in a free market has the agency to completely ignore demand when choosing what products they carry, but I wouldn’t say “ignoring demand” is a free market principle.
     
Spheric Harlot
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: 888500128, C3, 2nd soft.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 27, 2021, 07:14 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
In a free market, the supply of a product is a function of demand. A participant in a free market has the agency to completely ignore demand when choosing what products they carry, but I wouldn’t say “ignoring demand” is a free market principle.
I'll rephrase, because it seems I wasn't getting across:

In a free market, a vendor gets to choose what is best for his platform — e.g. what generates the most profit, long-term.

If the demand for a particular product is smaller than the loss it would incur from patrons leaving the platform if he chose to carry it, how is choosing not to distribute that product not basic free market principle?

Disney Channel completely "ignores" the "demand" for hardcore porn. They obviously don't comply with free market principles.

KFC completely ignores the demand for high-quality office furniture.

A hot dog stand completely ignores the demand for protective cellphone cases.

Facetious, yes — but deciding what you're selling, and what not, is absolutely elemental to ANY free market venture, is it not?
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 27, 2021, 09:28 AM
 
A vendor doesn’t get to choose what’s most profitable, the market does.

Disney consumers don’t demand porn from Disney. Well… most of them.
Fried chicken consumers don’t demand office furniture from KFC.
Hot dog consumers don’t demand cell phone cases from hot dog stands.

In contrast, communication platform users demand communication from communication platforms.

Show me the market will punish a communication platform who cedes to demand, and I will agree they are following a market principle by ignoring that demand. This strikes me as something difficult to show, because markets are inclined to reward vendors who cater to demand.
( Last edited by subego; Dec 27, 2021 at 10:12 AM. )
     
subego
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Chicago, Bang! Bang!
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 27, 2021, 10:40 AM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
People vote with their cash. Thats a key facet of free markets.
When does this stop being this and become something else?

What I mean by that is…

An individual choosing not to consume a product? That’s voting with dollars.

An individual convincing others not to consume it? Same.

A group organizing a boycott? Same.


What about leaning on vendors not to carry it?

Leaning on suppliers not to sell raw materials?

Leaning on banks not to lend?

Leaning on payment processors?


I posit somewhere along this continuum we’ve crossed the line of acting in accordance with the free market to interfering with it. Cancel culture has a similar continuum.
     
 
Thread Tools
 
Forum Links
Forum Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts
BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Top
Privacy Policy
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 12:20 PM.
All contents of these forums © 1995-2017 MacNN. All rights reserved.
Branding + Design: www.gesamtbild.com
vBulletin v.3.8.8 © 2000-2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.,