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Comment: Re:Luddites (Score 1) 658

by ahodgson (#48618985) Attached to: Economists Say Newest AI Technology Destroys More Jobs Than It Creates

We DO have very low cost consumer goods. Most of it's crap and breaks in a few years, but it is certainly cheaper than ever. Clothes are basically free, electronics are super cheap. Appliances and furniture are pretty cheap.

The only things going up signficantly in cost are:

      housing - driven by government regulation, artificially low interest rates, and a large labour component in construction

      automobiles - seemingly driven by government regulation, but also by artificially low interest rates that have allowed feature-itis. Automation is widely used and you would think there would be low cost cars around as a result, but instead we get expensive tanks with 8 year loans.

    health care - huge labour costs, resistance to automation. In my country it's all unionized government labour too, which means the cost growth is practically unconstrained. In the US, cost growth is driven by monopoly practices that would be illegal in other industries and cost-shifting to third parties

  education - all labour costs. Also artificially low interest rates and government regulation of student loans has made large amounts of money available to people who shouldn't qualify to borrow anything. That in turn has enabled schools to siphon off all that borrowed money. Universities and bankers get rich, students get lifetime debt servitude, what's not to like.

  energy - well, we're running low on cheap fossil fuels. Not much to be done about that. It's tough to improve on "stick a pipe in the ground and free energy flows out".

Basically, any industry with a large labour component, or which experiences heavy regulation, or worse, both, has become increasingly expensive relative to how cheap everything else is becoming. Financialization and the suppression of interest rates have enabled that growth.

Labour gets more expensive as taxes get higher, and taxes get higher as more people lose their jobs or move into much lower paid work where their health care or transportation costs are subsidized by those still working higher paid jobs.

Comment: Re: What Native American is supposed to mean (Score 1) 307

The many tribes fought each other and undoubtedly stole territory from each other and many since-exterminated tribes numerous times. It's not like a tribe settled somewhere 12,000 years ago or whatever and had lived there peaceably until Europeans showed up.

Comment: Re:Can't avoid medical records (Score 1) 528

by ahodgson (#48531965) Attached to: The Sony Pictures Hack Was Even Worse Than Everyone Thought

Refined sugar is a poison. It is not necessary for biological function, as it does not exist naturally.

I remember hearing about an experiment done quite a long time ago where some dogs were fed only water, some dogs fed only sugar water, and the dogs fed sugar water actually died faster than the dogs that only got water (hearsay, may not be accurate, I don't have a link, and I certainly don't condone starving animals to death).

Fats, on the other hand, are fine. Sugar and processed carbs cause obesity, not animal fats.

Comment: Re:Idea (Score 1) 244

by ahodgson (#48482401) Attached to: Health Advisor: Ebola Still Spreading, Worst Outbreak We've Ever Seen

You say that as if it was a bad thing. How does it affect you negatively?

Because I have to pay taxes to support them? Not only directly to them, but for all the other social services that they feel entitled to despite not paying their share of taxes to support them, especially (in my country anyway) health care.

That increases the cost of my labour, and that of the other people still willing to work, making us less competitive internationally. Which causes more jobs to be outsourced or just vanish due to being economically unproductive.

There must be more to life than having everything. -- Maurice Sendak

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