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Comment: Re:there aren't that many high paying wage (Score 1) 1055

by ScentCone (#49747943) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

Naming an extraordinarily unusual retailer does not bolster your point.

Of course it does. It's AN example of what I'm talking about. There are plenty of retailers who pay entry-level employees more than minimum wage. Why? Because they want to keep them around - churn is expensive, even at the stock/clerk level. Flipping burgers isn't supposed to be a career. You're not supposed to do things like have babies while you're on your first, menial job.

Comment: Re:Bad Solution (Score 1) 803

by ScentCone (#49739521) Attached to: Oregon Testing Pay-Per-Mile Driving Fee To Replace Gas Tax
Leaving aside the fact that your plan is to punish success, destroy incentive, and force people who are successful to hide their money ... taxing "wealth" is such a capricious activity that it, even more than the current system, is essentially designed to be divisive. As it stands, the wealthy people pay the vast majority of the income taxes, and the poorer HALF of the country pays essentially no income tax at all. You're proposing that every year you take away some of a successful person's assets until they are as poor as the lower half, right? Or would you just keep taking some of everyone's assets, every year, until nobody has anything left?

Your goal, rather than doing any of the things that actually create prosperity, is to simply tear down anything successful in the name of resentment. Which also happens to kill the goose laying the golden tax revenue egg that currently pays the bills.

Comment: Re:Bad Solution (Score 1) 803

by ScentCone (#49738489) Attached to: Oregon Testing Pay-Per-Mile Driving Fee To Replace Gas Tax

If it is fair to say the person using the roadway should pay it's cost because they get the benefit, it's fair to point out that 70-90% of the benefit is gotten by their employer.


The employer personally uses the road to drive to his business. Done.

The employees use the road the same way. Done.

The business' customers also use the road the same way (when visiting that store). Done.

All of them spend a bit of time on the road, and pay taxes on the fuel they burn in order to pay for the service of having the road available to them.

When the business owner receives a shipment of new shoes, he's paying the freight company (or his supplier is, and passing that cost along in one way or another) to make that delivery. That's a different use of the road. Big rigs and busy commercial operators are (in most places) taxed differently because they are buying a different class of service from the city, county, state, or federal agency that maintains the road they're using. The business owner picks up a portion of that higher wear-and-tear cost by being a paying customer of the freight company that is being taxed based on their heavy vehicles/use.

Your world view, which includes the government being involved in the running of the shoe store and going over everyone's books to decide when a shoe sale is profitable so that the shoe store owner (who may actually lose money that year, even while his employees earn taxable income) can be capriciously taxed at a much higher rate as he drives his Hyundai the same 5 miles to work as his sales people, is just a thinly veiled dose of contempt for people who own businesses. The guy is already paying property taxes as he locates and operates his store, and countless other fees.

You want to use MORE tax dollars to keep a running tally on what percentage of the value of a road's use is reflected in the ebbing and flowing profitability of all of the businesses that might be located somewhere along or connected to a given municipality's various types of roads? Wow, it's a Progressive's wet dream! That would require enormous numbers of new bureaucrats, funded by whole new tax schemes, just to allow that to (badly) take place. All so that you punish the business owner, or his better-than-average sales person, for making more money than someone else at the end of exactly the same commute.

Even if your fantasy of "percentage of value" could EVER be calculated as millions of people and businesses use the roads in different ways on different days, what would be the point? I know: your point is that you don't like the idea of government being thought of as a service provider, you like it when they are directly involved in people's personal business decision making, as a forced partner in their budgeting and profit considerations. All of this in the service of what ... trying to prop up the false picture of prosperity as a fixed pie, with the government's role being the arbiter of slice sizes in the name of Social Justice? Please. Your attempt to hide a confiscatory/redistributionist agenda behind a loopy road value formula based on impossibly intrusive and subjective measurements of personal achievement is just laughable. Or would be if it didn't represent such a toxic wider philosophy.

Comment: Re:Numbers (Score 0) 803

by ScentCone (#49736477) Attached to: Oregon Testing Pay-Per-Mile Driving Fee To Replace Gas Tax

Then you are compensating for the guy who only does 90% of his miles in Oregon, but the car is registered outside of the state.

Who cares? Because if you do 20k miles across the state line, you're going to be paying $6,000 to the state for activity you didn't conduct there. I don't care if it's the opposite for some other guy. I would care that this year, presto, my disposable income just dropped by $6,000 for no good reason.

Comment: Re:Bad Solution (Score 1) 803

by ScentCone (#49736333) Attached to: Oregon Testing Pay-Per-Mile Driving Fee To Replace Gas Tax

This tax, and the one it replaces, would charge people commuting to McDonalds equally with the owners of McDonalds even though the owners get somewhere between 70-90% of the economic benefit from that road use.

So? The government is providing a service: a way for both the owner and the employee (and the customers, and the vendors/contractors, and the police if they're needed, etc) to get to that restaurant. If you use that service (by driving on the road), you should pay some amount towards the maintenance of the road. Why someone is using the road should be absolutely none of your business, or the government's. Your notion that road taxes should be higher if you make more money than someone when you get where you're going is ... preposterous.

What about two shoe salesmen who drive down the same road to the same store to go to work? One is a poor communicator, never takes a shower, and can never seem to handle more than one customer at a time. His co-worker has his act together, and customers respond well by buying more shoes. He makes three times the commission, which translates to a much better income. You're suggesting that he (the better shoe salesman) should be charged more to use the same road because he's not a lazy idiot. Smart? Productive? Eeeeevil! Quick, tax that evil person for being more productive! Utter foolishness, and I'd just laugh it off ... but you just provided another case study in everything that's wrong with the lefty view of economics and prosperity.

Comment: Re:Irresponsible. (Score 1) 119

Parent and grandparent - tell that to the Marines. An Osprey had a "hard landing" (hah!) in Hawaii May 18. One Marine was killed and 21 hospitalized. There was a pall of black smoke rising from the "hard landing".

Should also tell that to the service members who are killed or injured in (by comparison) quite frequent helicopter mis-haps? We're talking about crashes and hard landings in aircraft that have long, long histories of service. Shit happens when you're trying to land a big heavy machine with spinning rotors - happens with fixed-wing aircraft, too.

Comment: Re:This is good (Score 1) 1055

by ScentCone (#49735449) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

We are not talking about a single person, but a systematic attack on poor people

Really. How are poor people being attacked? Is it by giving them free education, if they'll only take advantage of it? Is it by giving them free health care, if they'll bother to show up? Is it by handing them "refunds" on income taxes they don't even pay, which are collected from somebody else?

the lack of social support

What? Social entitlement spending is the lion's share of our entire government budget. It's huge, and we're drowning in it. I know, if only we just spent even more, prosperity among poor people would suddenly erupt, right? Like, say, in Baltimore ... where more is spent per student than in many top-achieving private schools. Hey, maybe it's not about social programs spending money! Maybe it's about the culture.

I understand if you are particularly patriotic and don't like people pointing out shortcomings in "your country", but your response is doing nothing to address the real problems, meaning if they do exist, you are doing your utmost to make sure they are never fixed.

What are you talking about? I'm pointing out exactly what the problem is: household culture. I live in a county that is pure melting pot. 20 years in a neighborhood where I was in one of only two "white" households for blocks in every direction. What do I observe? Across the street, a family living in subsidized housing. Multiple generations of unemployable, functionally illiterate people under one roof. The kids from that house attend exactly the same school system as the kids the next house over ... who are children of African immigrants. That household came to the US with essentially nothing, including a very poor grasp of English. A few years later? Both parents busted their asses working two jobs until they were able to buy a couple of cars, buy a townhouse, and buff up their own language and business skills. Major work ethic. Now they work comfortable white collar jobs, and have purchased their third house in the neighborhood (so they're renting out two to other people).

So you stand those two households next to each other. They "look" the same, they both could be said to be in exactly the same economic condition ten or fifteen years ago. But one is living on the dole, getting free housing from the county, food stamps, and regular visits from social services while their kids have grown up to be petty criminals in and out of brushes with the law while dropping out of high school. The other family has overcome a language barrier, the lack of funds, serious social displacement, and whatever extra burden may be perceived as coming along with having dark African skin tones ... and they are happy, prospering, and looking forward to their oldest daughter returning from a year of college in Paris. The difference? Attitude. 100% family culture. Giving a shit, personally.

So who "fixed" their situation? They did. Who is trying to "fix" the perpetually poor family next door? A parade of government services people, programs, and tens of thousands of other people's dollars, year in, year out. Do you REALLY think that that household is poor because other people are prosperous? Your BS about the "wealth gap" is just that: BS. The amount of prosperity isn't fixed, it's grown with effort by those who put in the effort. I did, though, enjoy your ironic judgement of me while you're lecturing me about judging others. Hilarious! Keep up the good entertainment.

Comment: Re:there aren't that many high paying wage (Score 4, Interesting) 1055

by ScentCone (#49734211) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

There aren't that many high paying wage or wage that pay above 15$ an hour and there is already a fierce competition for them.

Companies cannot find enough people with even modest intellectual skills to hire (and retain) for even modestly skilled jobs with much better than minimum wages paid. Hell, there are landscaping companies around here who will pay $20/hour for anyone that will consistently show up to shovel. Costco hires even the most basic, unskilled shelf-stackers for well above minimum wage (closer to $19).

Are you one of those which think the poor are lazy ?

Actually, in many cases that's exactly the problem. But kids born in to families where doing the work needed to become a decent high school graduate is considered unimportant or too much trouble have lazy parents to thank for that - the kids themselves usually don't know better until it's already too late to form decent habits.

You need money for a proper education

No, no you don't. The taxpayers around you will pay for your education through high school. And if you've don't anything even close to working hard, you'll have the academic background needed to get anything from substantial subsidies to full scholarships in higher education. I worked while in college, to have money. Did you?

Frankly your kind of thought are so short sighted , you should get glasses for your brain.

You have no idea where prosperity comes from, apparently.

Comment: Re:This is good (Score 1) 1055

by ScentCone (#49734163) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

(High-)School is mandatory and free here.

As it is in the US. But that doesn't mean that teenagers can be forced to actually attend, let alone to learn anything while they're there. Past a certain age, they can just walk away. The alternative would be to run bastions of learning as if they were literally prisons. The point is that in many cases the choice to ignore the opportunity to learn is just that: a choice. Dumb kids don't understand that choice, which is why parents matter.

Comment: Re: Affirmative Action (Score 1) 527

by Dread_ed (#49733127) Attached to: Harvard Hit With Racial Bias Complaint

I agree with your points regarding police and their misuse of power, the social repercussions of our destructive over-prosecution and incarceration systems, and even that minorities (and especially black people) have suffered from restrictions on housing, access to medical care, and educational opportunities.
However, I differ in opinion to the reasons why.
Let's approach this semi-Socratically and start with a question: why is it even remotely arguable that our country's first black president can be said to have done more for, and tried harder to pander to, illegal residents of this country than he has for our own black citizens?
Another question: why are the republicans fielding presidential candidates that are supporting amnesty for illegal aliens when conventional wisdom paints them all as racist pigs who hate Mexicans?
I believe the answer to these questions is directly related to the reason why black Americans continue to suffer in our country. Namely this, when a group remains flexible in their political approach and support, they will have the advantage of participating in and reaping the benefits of the political policies generated by both the democrats and the republicans. However, when a group remains singlemindedly dedicated to one party, either the democrats or the republicans, and is antagonistic toward the other, their ability to maintain meaningful representation and to effectively influence the political landscape is destroyed.
Just look at Christian religious groups and individuals in the U.S. In the past they had great control over both parties. Now as the faithful lapdog of the republicans, they get to watch while their Armageddon approaches. Gay marriage and rights legislation are passing in state after state, and even some of their republican leaders are beginning to entertain the idea of coming out for gay rights.
Similarly, black Americans have watched as their infrastructure, business opportunities, and educational prospects have dwindled to the point of permanent subclass status, all under the care and feeding of the democrats they elected and that overwhelmingly control the ghettoized landscapes where they are increasingly forced to live. They watch as their children are undereducated and let their leaders prevent any competition in their school systems and make underperfomring teachers impossible to fire. They see businesses retreat from their neighborhoods in droves, and continue to elect candidates who raise taxes on business. They vote in leaders that offer social programs, instead of economic opportunity.
And who can blame either party for taking these people for granted? These black peoples and religious zealots are almost exactly the same. They have proven time and time again that they will sacrifice their personal integrity, compromise their beliefs and ethics, and whore themselves without reservation to their dedicated political party, regardless of the abuse and distain they are treated with, without a care for what those parties do to their closely held beliefs, and without a thought for the future of their progeny.
So, let's contrast the Hispanic voting block with the two sad-sacks I just mentioned. They appear similar to both groups actually. Religious, maybe even overwhelmingly so to some. A minority with a history of abuse and disenfranchisement. No outright slavery in their past, but if you knew how hard undocumented produce workers had to labor for less than minimum wage and with no benefits, well it's hardly above slavery at that point. And yet, here we have two parties competing for their vote. They haven't thrown their hat in one ring and started the aggressively self-enforced indoctrination of their children and peers toward one party, punishing those who dare to be different with ostracism, vituperation, and even violence. Hell no man! They are doin it right, esse! They have both parties eating out of their hand, offering them everything they want. I mean really, our first black president decided to (ostensibly) violate the freaking constitution, defy congress to their face, and singlehandedly stand up for millions of illegal aliens by wielding his presidential power like no one has ever done before. But when asked about the plight of African-Americans that led to the recent riots, he totally cops out with a lame ass excuse, saying it can only be fixed if everyone wants to fix it, and everyone has to work together or nothing will happen; and people fucking accept that shit?
So, as you can see, I feel expressly that these points are all data leading to the conclusion that political devotion Is political suicide. Make both parties vie for your affection and you can have just about anything you want.
  Need more proof? Look up all of the vastly successful companies that donate money to both parties. They get everything they want.

Comment: Re:This is good (Score 4, Insightful) 1055

by ScentCone (#49732659) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

Instead of blaming it on the "subcultures", blame the greater society in which these subcultures were born.

Why? The "greater society" regularly produces clear-thinking, educated, hard working people for whom minimum wage is a distant memory by the time they're still young but on to their second, better job. The problem actually is constrained to sub-sections of the society. Places where the government spends more per student on education, positions endless arrays of social services, and heaps money in program after program designed to provide the entitled equal outcomes you think should occur. But it doesn't work. Why? Because it's not about how much money is thrown into such programs, or whether the mom and pop store on the corner is suddenly force by the government to pay $15/hour to the kid who comes by for a couple hours a day after school to unload a truck or whatever.

What it's about is what happens when that kid goes home. Do his parents speak English? Do they get involved in his homework? Do they stay away from street crime and other influences that wreck households? Are they giving the kid the huge, proven advantage of having given birth to him in a family that will actually bother to have two parents pooling their time and resources to give the kid a decent start in life?

Should "the greater society" step in and force uninterested, absent parents to spend the 18 years of daily hours needed to raise a productive human being?

The world is no nursery. - Sigmund Freud