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    Thread: Do you see an end to this mess - 5 years?

    1. Member BetterByDesign's Avatar
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      07-12-2012 11:22 AM #1
      I see older people paying for groceries with handfuls of loose change,
      Family and friends have been been laid off
      People selling or just abandoning their boats
      People checking their investments several times a day
      Drive by a car dealership lately?

      I have never been through something like this. Turn on the TV and guess what: its really JUST game shows, talent shows and singing contests. Couponing at grocery stores?

      I may have an iPAD, but it feels like its 1960 and I should be eating meatloaf and playing board games.

      Something tells me things will get better, but not to the pre Lehman days. I think many of those folks are out and will not come back in the way they did before. There are a huge pools of capital just GONE.

      Are we talking 5 years? 10 years?
      Brazil 2014

    2. Senior Member dunhamjr's Avatar
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      07-12-2012 12:58 PM #2
      what mess are you talking about?

      the money thing.
      or the general you are bored thing.

      things REALLY dont seem that bad to me.
      do i have friends in low places? yes.
      have parts of my family been hit hard? yes.
      could things be better? yes.

      but its not the majority of people. its not the people that i see as ambitious and willing to put in the extra effort. its the people that i feel expect things to be easy or handed to them.

      throughout all this MESS you are talking about.

      i have bought and still own, 2 houses.
      currently have 4 cars and a motorcycle, all of which i didnt have 5 yrs ago.
      got married.
      just had a baby boy.
      my income has doubled in the last 8 years.
      my wife makes more now then she ever has.
      i fund a roth.
      i put money in a roth for my mom too.
      have doubled my 401k contributions.
      put money into savings, brokerage accounts.
      paid for half of a new car for my mom.

      bragging a little i suppose... but in my circle of friends and family, this is the general trend.
      epitome
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    3. Moderator rich!'s Avatar
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      07-12-2012 01:22 PM #3
      i've seen old people pay with loose change and counting pennies for many many years - nothing new there.

      family/friends that lost their jobs - found jobs within a few weeks. those whose decided to live on unemployment - welp are still on it.

      everyone i know who owns a boat - wants to sell their boat.

      i check my investments everyday - what i call trading.

      dealerships are selling cars like crazy

      primetime tv has sucked since reality tv became the thing - all mind numbing stuff. maybe someone will create a new cop-themed show... oh wait.

      we have a kindle and read books

      +. what dunhamjr said ( sans stuff for parents )

      ok all in jest but i guess how you see things and deal with it. media doesn't help nor do most of the financial news outlets about next recession/europe/blah blah blah which only plays into less confidence.
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    4. Member BetterByDesign's Avatar
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      07-12-2012 02:28 PM #4
      Well I am also doing fine on paper and own a Kindle and dont use it.

      I went through an involuntary job change and took 4 months and found a better job. But I am starting to notice things more, that's all.

      What ppl buy and how they pay at grocery stores, eating out and ppl scrutinizing the bill just a bit more, older ppl at restaurant in particular kill me - doggy bag everything.

      I've never observed like that. Not really bored, but I've always grown up full steam ahead but now I just look around and its all kinda depressing.
      Brazil 2014

    5. 07-12-2012 03:08 PM #5
      I live in a tourist microcosm and very popular place so my view is skewed.
      although busninesses have folded up, complaints of visitors 'not spending' etc. this place is busy and this year seems more than the past few years.
      real estate is all over the board with some places selling for above asking price, some selling at asking and some selling way below .......with lots of high end properties for sale all over the island,
      the lower end in recent months has started to move, lots of reo, short sale, etc.
      the re built the mc donalds and it opened with the lower price combo meal at just below 6 bucks......7 is probably the average with some 8.00
      prices in the grocery stores in hawaii have always been hight but there has been a marked increase within the last two years.......gas is 4.50 or more pretty much all the time.
      My business is off quite a bit for various reasons.......but with potential with a bit of marketing to increase by double if I actually like, work.

      the guy above popping off about all the increases must be in tech in wa. state......another microcosm,
      so yes regionally things can be really good or really bad depending on where you live..........

      medical, entertainment, banking seems to be where the money is with tech hanging in there

      people clamoring for more 'free money' is becoming so loud it's hard to hear yourself reason that going to work is a good idea when you can go on unemployment indefinatly, hurt you little toe and get disability and throw on some social securtiy, you making good money, not ever realizing where the 'money' comes from.

      alot is media inpsired smoke screen and opium (TV) to keep the masses blind and sedated.....

      rest assured there are some desparate governments working behind the scenes with banks, corporations to make sure that THEY are the ones that will come out OK in this MESS.........

      when a politician says " this is for the good of the __________(name your country) rest assured you've have been taken advantage of for the good of the politician (s)...............

      some say we are in the eye of the hurricane once we move out of it hold on to you life

    6. 07-13-2012 02:15 PM #6
      Quote Originally Posted by dunhamjr View Post
      Its not the people that i see as ambitious and willing to put in the extra effort. its the people that i feel expect things to be easy or handed to them.
      That's why all those hard working Mexicans are so rich right?

      That is such a naive view these days imho. The markets and banking systems are so rigged to benefit the few at the expense of the many that being ambitious has nothing to do with it. All the extremely wealthy people I know weren't particularly ambitious or willing to put in the extra effort, they were either handed their wealth from relatives, or willing to do illegal things to get a larger slice of the pie than they are entitled. This view that wealthy people work harder, and the poor are lazy is often trotted out, but from my view the exact opposite is the case.

    7. Senior Member dunhamjr's Avatar
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      07-13-2012 02:36 PM #7
      Quote Originally Posted by a_riot View Post
      That's why all those hard working Mexicans are so rich right?

      That is such a naive view these days imho. The markets and banking systems are so rigged to benefit the few at the expense of the many that being ambitious has nothing to do with it. All the extremely wealthy people I know weren't particularly ambitious or willing to put in the extra effort, they were either handed their wealth from relatives, or willing to do illegal things to get a larger slice of the pie than they are entitled. This view that wealthy people work harder, and the poor are lazy is often trotted out, but from my view the exact opposite is the case.
      rich in MX is WAY different from rich in the US.

      do you really think that anything in this conversation actually pertains to the ultra rich?

      no it doesnt. it pertains to the average, everyday person.

      for the average, everyday, non-illegal... ambition and effort ARE an important factor.

      i have seen people in numerous states of hardship over the past couple years. those who tried, got themselves out. those who were lazy, sat on unemployment for literally 2 years.
      epitome
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      2.0 TDI "BHW" engine partout - @tdiclub @vwvortex

    8. 07-13-2012 09:14 PM #8
      Quote Originally Posted by dunhamjr View Post
      no it doesnt. it pertains to the average, everyday person.

      for the average, everyday, non-illegal... ambition and effort ARE an important factor.
      Most average, everyday people are hard working, taxpaying citizens raising kids, paying mortgages, etc, that have to trust the system they are forced to deal with. Lazy people don't concern me. If you want to be a bum, be a bum, why would I care? Leaves more for the rest of us ambitious types. The problem is when the hard working tax paying people start getting ripped off by the system. That leads to the breakdown of society, and that ain't pretty.

    9. 07-13-2012 11:30 PM #9
      The capital hasn't just disappeared, it's a zero sum game, so someone somewhere got ultra wealthy.

    10. 07-14-2012 03:02 PM #10
      Quote Originally Posted by BetterByDesign View Post

      I may have an iPAD, but it feels like its 1960 and I should be eating meatloaf and playing board games.

      Something tells me things will get better, but not to the pre Lehman days. I think many of those folks are out and will not come back in the way they did before. There are a huge pools of capital just GONE.

      Are we talking 5 years? 10 years?

      I think the 60s was closer to the norm than the two decades prior to Lehman. That was all an illusion of prosperity created by financial engineering induced debt. The entire financial sector stopped monitoring lending quality because they could just past the hot potato to someone else. So even crappy businesses and low credit consumers got money to spend. And Lehman was payback.

      The inflation adjusted Dow Jones has returned an average of about 1-2% over the last 80 years. There is your norm. The 90s and 2000s "boom" were historic anomalous.
      Last edited by vwconvert; 07-14-2012 at 03:08 PM.

    11. Member Mike!'s Avatar
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      07-15-2012 12:46 PM #11
      Quote Originally Posted by AIRider View Post
      The capital hasn't just disappeared, it's a zero sum game, so someone somewhere got ultra wealthy.
      Not necessarily. Absolutely some people probably made a pretty penny betting on the downturn, but 2008 erased a lot of paper wealth in people's retirement accounts, especially the large swath of boomers just getting ready for retirement. This wealth was never "real" because it was never actualized, and many who rode the market out are back close-to-form now, but many did have to accept that their nest egg wasn't quite as big as they thought it was.

      Capital markets aren't zero-sum. There's speculation of forward earnings inherent in market valuations of equities that can change with the wind.

    12. Member GeoffD's Avatar
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      07-15-2012 03:50 PM #12
      Quote Originally Posted by Mike! View Post
      Not necessarily. Absolutely some people probably made a pretty penny betting on the downturn, but 2008 erased a lot of paper wealth in people's retirement accounts, especially the large swath of boomers just getting ready for retirement. This wealth was never "real" because it was never actualized, and many who rode the market out are back close-to-form now, but many did have to accept that their nest egg wasn't quite as big as they thought it was.

      Capital markets aren't zero-sum. There's speculation of forward earnings inherent in market valuations of equities that can change with the wind.
      ...and paper wealth in real estate holdings. Between 401-Ks, after tax investments too heavily weighted in tech stocks that took a bloodbath, and real estate, I'm down a good $500K with zero shot of making all of that back before I retire. I'm 54. Instead of looking at semi-retirement at age 60, I'm now looking at semi-retiring at age 65 and not collecting Social Security until it maxes out at age 70. I get the maximum Social Security benefit since I have 35 years of maxing out Social Security payments but that turns into insurance in case I live forever.

      Most boomers have less than $100K in savings beyond their house. They're looking at maybe $15K to $20K in Social Security pension per year. There is going to be a gigantic demand for low income elderly housing. Half the boomers are going to be in trailer parks.

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      07-18-2012 05:20 PM #13
      I don't about elsewhere but here in NYC, people I see at work at financial institutions are just racking it up. Too much cheap money. Real estate still doing well here and once you step 15 mi outside of NYC it may or may not be that hot.

      It's a very imbalanced situation right now, companies are richer and more powerful and they are lining up the govt's pockets to ensure nothing will change.

    14. 07-18-2012 07:30 PM #14
      i would have to agree that since most of the population of the US is on the gov't payroll in one form or another none of that voting body wants anything to change and if anything are clamoring for more.
      a high/far can debt go?....... quadrillions?.....

      hotels are booked, restaurants are full.

      here on maui they are expanding the costco, building a huge new police station/jail, there are numerous road projects (always during election year) there projects going on all over the island...
      you would be hard pressed to see that two of the shopping centers were foreclosed on, tons of empty retail space, bimmer, benz, lexus, etc on the road.....

      my guess is that most of it is facade backed by real nothing. (debt as an asset?)........sort of sums up the whole deal.

      i get the feeling that fed bank of Us is out of tricks and since they've not done anything but are hinting that the might do something.........I think they are up against the wall with the fiat money experiment and are looking to save themselves on the way down
      the certainly are not looking out for my best interests

    15. Member leakypipeDCI's Avatar
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      08-29-2012 12:54 PM #15
      Quote Originally Posted by a_riot View Post
      most average, everyday people are hard working, taxpaying citizens raising kids, paying mortgages, etc, that have to trust the system they are forced to deal with. Lazy people don't concern me. If you want to be a bum, be a bum, why would i care? Leaves more for the rest of us ambitious types. The problem is when the hard working tax paying people start getting ripped off by the system. That leads to the breakdown of society, and that ain't pretty.
      lo****ingl
      It's all about squats and deads.

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      08-29-2012 01:05 PM #16
      Quote Originally Posted by BetterByDesign View Post
      ... but now I just look around and its all kinda depressing.
      I think it's more depressing looking back at the "fun and easy" times and knowing now how artificial it was and how so many lived beyond their means with no structure. I hope a lot of people learned some hard lessons. There were people in my neighborhood that cashed-out re-fi'd and spent the money on inground pools, 3 week cruises, new motorcycles, etc. WTF!

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      08-29-2012 01:08 PM #17
      Quote Originally Posted by a_riot View Post
      That's why all those hard working Mexicans are so rich right?
      There's a big difference in being a hard worker landscaping people's lawns or being a hard worker in an engineering firm w/ an advanced degree. If said Mexican was qualified to work in a trade that paid well, you'd have a different scenario.
      But you seem to like to stir up the empty glass a lot...

    18. Member GeoffD's Avatar
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      08-29-2012 02:26 PM #18
      Quote Originally Posted by tbvvw View Post
      There's a big difference in being a hard worker landscaping people's lawns or being a hard worker in an engineering firm w/ an advanced degree. If said Mexican was qualified to work in a trade that paid well, you'd have a different scenario.
      But you seem to like to stir up the empty glass a lot...
      As a career "hard worker in an engineering firm w/ an advanced degree", I don't think there is such a big difference. If you make W-2 money, you're working for it. I may make 10x+ more than the Mexican W-2 employee mowing grass for a living but the money stops the moment I stop working.

      If you're truly affluent, your wealth works for you. All those W-2 people toiling away in the firms you invest in are doing their bit to add to your wealth.

      .

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      08-29-2012 04:29 PM #19
      Quote Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
      As a career "hard worker in an engineering firm w/ an advanced degree", I don't think there is such a big difference. If you make W-2 money, you're working for it. I may make 10x+ more than the Mexican W-2 employee mowing grass for a living but the money stops the moment I stop working.

      If you're truly affluent, your wealth works for you. All those W-2 people toiling away in the firms you invest in are doing their bit to add to your wealth.

      .
      C'mon Geoff. If you and the landscaper work the same exact 30 yrs and each put away the same % of savings/investments as you're "supposed" to put away, your retirement cashflow conditions will be much different then the landscaper. The money stops at some point for the both of you...

    20. Member BetterByDesign's Avatar
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      08-31-2012 01:05 AM #20
      Quote Originally Posted by vwconvert View Post
      I think the 60s was closer to the norm than the two decades prior to Lehman. That was all an illusion of prosperity created by financial engineering induced debt. The entire financial sector stopped monitoring lending quality because they could just past the hot potato to someone else. So even crappy businesses and low credit consumers got money to spend. And Lehman was payback.

      The inflation adjusted Dow Jones has returned an average of about 1-2% over the last 80 years. There is your norm. The 90s and 2000s "boom" were historic anomalous.
      I guess I am reminising about a financial engineered blip then; I dont know anything about the 60's but I think this is worse.
      Brazil 2014

    21. Member BetterByDesign's Avatar
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      08-31-2012 01:06 AM #21
      Quote Originally Posted by tbvvw View Post
      I think it's more depressing looking back at the "fun and easy" times and knowing now how artificial it was and how so many lived beyond their means with no structure. I hope a lot of people learned some hard lessons. There were people in my neighborhood that cashed-out re-fi'd and spent the money on inground pools, 3 week cruises, new motorcycles, etc. WTF!
      I don't

      A lot of people also made real money/wealth as a result and they bought those pools, cars, and houses and could afford them. Sure it came at the expense of those that were trying to imitate the first group but anything is better than mediocrity.
      Last edited by BetterByDesign; 08-31-2012 at 01:18 AM.
      Brazil 2014

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      08-31-2012 09:33 AM #22
      Quote Originally Posted by BetterByDesign View Post
      I don't

      A lot of people also made real money/wealth as a result and they bought those pools, cars, and houses and could afford them. Sure it came at the expense of those that were trying to imitate the first group but anything is better than mediocrity.
      Living on credit is a house of cards....

      The average American adult has more credit card debt than they do 401K/IRA savings (not to mention their average annual savings is 0.0%), let me know how you think that will work out?

    23. Senior Member AZGolf's Avatar
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      08-31-2012 03:27 PM #23
      I think the core problem is that Americans are being divided, and a nation divided cannot stand.

    24. 08-31-2012 04:00 PM #24
      az gold has something there

      divide and conquer 'embrace our diversity' ___________ american (name your ethinicity)

      this is a politically marketed concept.......started back in the 60's and has been very effective in robbing 'the people' of their voting power

      instead of focusing on our similarities , the have been trained to notice our 'differences'.......

      the 99% concept is probably been floated out there by a political party (either one it doesn't matter) to further polarize the population....I would guess the 1% are responseable for getting that thing going..........

      some have predicted more soical unrest.................with these shootings in movie theaters, malls, restaruants, occupy movements and hungry people........it's possible someone is correct............

      the police force has become miltarized and a lot are combat experianced ex service.......just look at the uniforms and swat gear...........

      five years?..............more of the same is my educated guess of course backed by my high school degree

    25. Member BetterByDesign's Avatar
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      08-31-2012 11:32 PM #25
      Quote Originally Posted by AZGolf View Post
      I think the core problem is that Americans are being divided, and a nation divided cannot stand.
      Stand for what. America was divided before Lehman and I don't recall hearing any complaints then.
      Brazil 2014

    26. Senior Member AZGolf's Avatar
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      09-01-2012 12:13 AM #26
      Quote Originally Posted by BetterByDesign View Post
      Stand for what. America was divided before Lehman and I don't recall hearing any complaints then.
      Actually back when I was in school they still taught in history that America was the great melting pot to which immigrants from all over the world came to unite under one flag to build a great nation. Sure, there are a few indigenous peoples in America, but nearly everyone here is from somewhere else. It was one nation, united, with liberty and justice for all. Now some schools don't even say the pledge, so I can understand how someone would think that the nation isn't supposed to be united. It's only half of the nation's name and all.

      No, it was intended to be a great, united nation but now it appears we're on the Argentinean trajectory, or perhaps the Greek route. Unlikely to have another civil war, but absolutely possible we'll see a breakdown of the nation as we know it and maybe even military rule if things get really out of hand. We do, after all, have the world's largest military. Perhaps we even have so many soldiers that we could rule our own nation with them in a declared time of crisis.

      It's a simple thing; if the nation cannot function united, it will not stand.

    27. Member GeoffD's Avatar
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      09-01-2012 11:23 AM #27
      Quote Originally Posted by vwconvert View Post
      I think the 60s was closer to the norm than the two decades prior to Lehman.
      No, the 50's and 60's were a complete anomaly. The economies of Europe and Asia were bombed flat in World War II. The United States was more than 50% of the world economy. With no world competition, the middle class prospered. We're now back to the "norm" where there is enormous income stratification.

    28. Member BetterByDesign's Avatar
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      09-01-2012 04:17 PM #28
      Quote Originally Posted by AZGolf View Post
      Actually back when I was in school they still taught in history that America was the great melting pot to which immigrants from all over the world came to unite under one flag to build a great nation. Sure, there are a few indigenous peoples in America, but nearly everyone here is from somewhere else. It was one nation, united, with liberty and justice for all. Now some schools don't even say the pledge, so I can understand how someone would think that the nation isn't supposed to be united. It's only half of the nation's name and all.

      No, it was intended to be a great, united nation but now it appears we're on the Argentinean trajectory, or perhaps the Greek route. Unlikely to have another civil war, but absolutely possible we'll see a breakdown of the nation as we know it and maybe even military rule if things get really out of hand. We do, after all, have the world's largest military. Perhaps we even have so many soldiers that we could rule our own nation with them in a declared time of crisis.

      It's a simple thing; if the nation cannot function united, it will not stand.
      I still dont know what you are looking to stand for. And now unsure of what you mean by "united."

      With all due respect, it is this kind of gooblygook language that has further led America into the mess that it is in.

      There were plenty of shootings and crazy and frustrated people before Lehman lit up.

      The term melting pot refers to everyone accepting themselves and each other as being American. To me, that first and foremost means freedom to choose your ideologies be they political, religious, or otherwise. In that way, we are united.

      The freedom to express differences in civil manner is what makes us united and sets us apart from the rest of the world.

      I dont know what other type of united you are talking about.
      Brazil 2014

    29. 09-02-2012 07:06 PM #29
      back the 70's I worked in a small restaurant on the oceanfront
      the crew was made up of : a south american owner, a black chef, japensese prep cooks, filipino dishwashers, white second chefs, white and hispanic wait staff, and some hot cocktail waitresses (lol)
      our little resturant sat about 75 people whilst the newer place a few doors down sat over 125. a friendly competition grew between the two places at to how many covers we could do per night.
      We worked toghther as a well oiled machine, regardless of race, creed or color to top the competetors, and we did!.
      yes plenty of racial teasing and nowadays you would call 'slurs' between us during high stress nights but at the end of the night most of us ended up in our own bar partying together and really becoming good friends, again regardless of our race creed or color. it just didn't matter as we all had a common goal to acheive and took pride in doing it.
      From what I'm told the old owner still has a photo of that crew in his home on the wall as a rememberance of our small, insignificant but rewarding acheivement.
      to me that is what it means to be 'united'
      and to me teaching 'embracing our diversity' is to divide and polarize the masses so they do not gain power.

      the last thing our government wants is that the masses to become unified.........it is of more value to 'controllers' to have us fighting amongst ourselves.........

      unite for what? I don't know to become a great country of inovators, manufacturers of the best products in the world, have the best human rights record in the world, to provide and example of how a country can unite and work together to become great, putting asside racial, ethnic, religious differences?

      the problem with the US gov't is they don't want to be a part of, they want to control (it all!)
      whoever you elect, that is their aim......to control it ALL

    30. Member GeoffD's Avatar
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      09-02-2012 10:28 PM #30
      Quote Originally Posted by mauslick View Post

      unite for what? I don't know to become a great country of inovators, manufacturers of the best products in the world, have the best human rights record in the world, to provide and example of how a country can unite and work together to become great, putting asside racial, ethnic, religious differences?
      Go read the Apple/Samsung lawsuit thread. There's still a huge amount of innovation in the US. The problem is that John Q Public resents the hell out of the fact that the people who create valuable intellectual property tend to make a lot of money doing it. For those who can actually create valuable IP, it's a complete meritocracy. Little different from professional sports where ghetto thugs and Latin Americans who can barely speak English get paid millions.

    31. 09-02-2012 11:34 PM #31
      that is all there is left to manufacture intllectual property?

      john q is being programmed to hate anyone one that is successful, instead of being encouraged to be part of something good.......

      I created some intellectual property, no one seems to care, of course most don't know about it either and it not will it affect their lives

      usually it's some war that brings a nation together, for reasons beyond me

    32. 09-03-2012 08:53 PM #32
      Quote Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
      The problem is that John Q Public resents the hell out of the fact that the people who create valuable intellectual property tend to make a lot of money doing it.
      Citation? Many people who create IP get nothing in return because they were working for an employer at the time of its creation. The owners of the enterprise are held up as geniuses taking all the credit when none is typically due. All open source software was written with no reward and open source software is the basis of OS X, GNU, DNS, TCP/IP, etc, etc.

      Quote Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
      For those who can actually create valuable IP, it's a complete meritocracy.
      That's simply naive. Commercial concerns are always more heavily weighted then merit, and often enough the IP creators are nudged out of the rewards early on. What is commercialized is not what is the most meritorious, but what is the most profitable.

      Quote Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
      Little different from professional sports where ghetto thugs and Latin Americans who can barely speak English get paid millions.
      Wha?

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