Comments on: How to deal with the plutocrats A slice of lime in the soda Sun, 26 Oct 2014 19:05:02 +0000 hourly 1 By: Danny_Black Fri, 07 Jan 2011 17:25:05 +0000 ARJTurgot2, if Rachman says it then it is probably wrong.

By: ARJTurgot2 Fri, 07 Jan 2011 13:27:52 +0000 Since the thread has drifted to decline 11/01/02/think_again_american_decline

and Brit bashing, 33SI20110104

the latter item is the serious issue.

By: Danny_Black Fri, 07 Jan 2011 03:44:06 +0000 y2kurtus, South Korea in particular and Asia in general have an issue in that the general social model is that the parents kill themselves supporting their kids, the kids then support them in old age and family bails out anyone who is not working or struggling. The problem is that model is increasingly not working. The population as a whole is aging, they are having less kids – the korean gov is trying to give bonuses for babies, Singapore runs articles on how to date – the cost of living is jumping relative to wages and people are entering the job market later and later with a corresponding increasing burden on parents and decreased ability to support them when the parents retire. As a result the shortfall is being made up by debt which is piling up at a pretty sharp clip.

PS you see Samsung results today?

TFF, alot of that anger is manufactured by our friends in the press and also in the government. I also think the US has a long proven history of rising to challenges and overcoming them. If you want to see a country that is completely and utterly screwed one only has to look at the UK.

By: TFF Thu, 06 Jan 2011 21:14:49 +0000 y2kurtus, I think we are in better shape than that. Despite recent evidence to the contrary, America has a long history of adaptability. In talking to people I hear some anger at Wall Street and Washington (seemingly in bed with each other), but also a willingness to accept things as they are and make the necessary steps to move forward.

The anger makes better politics (and far better talk radio), but the acceptance is more central to our national character. I’m *not* hearing denial, bitterness, or entitlement in the vast majority of my daily conversations (and I don’t hang in such high falutin’ circles as some on this blog).

By: y2kurtus Thu, 06 Jan 2011 20:51:52 +0000 I don’t for a minute want to write the U.S. off… I think our economy will grow… just not as fast as the economies where average age is lower, average education is higher, and average work week is higher… South Korea fits that bill but I doubt their the only ones.

TFF said it best “we aren’t seeing a market for those with generic low-level skills and no initiative.”

The problem is that seems to be a fast growing demographic in this country.

By: Danny_Black Thu, 06 Jan 2011 15:45:42 +0000 sorry that should be a pyschic ceramic toad

By: Danny_Black Thu, 06 Jan 2011 15:45:06 +0000 y2kurtus, the Nikkei has been mostly stagnant since the early 90s when it was mostly controlled by what was then the largest money manager in the world – a psyhic ceramic frog in Madame Nui’s restaurant. The Kospi runs off a mix of ajumma day traders, lazy incompetent fund managers doing fake trades to bump up the market to market NAV on their closet index tracking funds and a few hedgies and international IBs skimming the froth off the local noise traders.

So far the US has been written off in the 70s, the 80s, the noughties and now this decade. If Mr Salmon was sharper he’d be writting vague warnings about China so in a couple of years after that ponzi scheme comes crashing down he can cash in by pretending he predicted it.

By: TFF Thu, 06 Jan 2011 14:15:06 +0000 Agreed, DanHess. It isn’t merely globalization, though. Technology (both communication and data management) allows small numbers of individuals to reach large numbers of clients.

Nor is this confined to the “superstars”. Anybody with skills and initiative can establish a small services business on a shoestring budget. These businesses squeeze compensation for those who prefer to work “in-house” for larger corporations, because they offer superior talent and superior flexibility *and* their cost structure doesn’t have nearly as much overhead baked in.

You read about people in their 50s who were laid off from professional careers and have trouble finding new positions at their old compensation. Did you learn anything during those 30 years of corporate employment? Then market those skills! Be creative and invent a niche for yourself.

Thus we’re seeing immense wealth for the people at the top of the corporate ladder. We’re also seeing a rapidly expanding “entrepreneur” class, making far more money than those with similar skills and a corporate job.

What we aren’t seeing is a market for those with generic low-level skills and no initiative.

By: SWARMtheBANKS Thu, 06 Jan 2011 07:25:12 +0000 the quote “the transformation of the world economy lifts four people in China and India out of poverty and into the middle class, and meanwhile means one American drops out of the middle class, that’s not such a bad trade” misses a very critical point.

The U.S. has it’s infrastructure of roads, phone lines, buildings, water treatment, sewage, roadways and buildings already in place. It should not take the same level of work to maintain as it took to build up.

Several problems as I see it include people who had debt have not been given a fair chance to reduce their debt through interest rate relief on both their credit card debt and their mortgage rates. 0/11/2010-after-election-4-point-economi c.html

Also, the U.S. government has chosen to put most of its investment in preserving unencumbered access to the worlds resources through enhanced military spending, and not enough into being more self reliant and more efficient in the use of resources.

Also, the internet has changed the economy as well. 0/12/internet-has-changed-capitalism-for ever.html

By: DanHess Thu, 06 Jan 2011 06:21:40 +0000 Part of the reason for the huge pay discrepancies was discussed in a great article in the NY Times on Christmas:

“Income Inequality and the Superstar Effect” also titled
“How Superstars’ Pay Stifles Everyone Else” ss/26excerpt.html

The gist is that in a globalized world, a few incredible talents can get the business of everybody.

For example Christina Aguilera can take music spending away from other musicians from Springfield to Timbuktu. Via an ETF, I (and anybody with pocket money lying around) can have Gross/El Erian manage my money, taking that business away from not only from my neighborhood financial advisor but even minor Wall St geniuses.

Nothing sinister there, just competition. I don’t have to invest with Pimco, I just happen to think they are worth it.

Lots of illegal stuff going on in finance, I agree. Tons of folks ought to be in jail, including some from Goldman (high-frequency front-running for instance). But much of that wealth is just what happens when you compete with some success on the world stage.

If we are to question the rich-poor gap, we must look at globalization itself. The winners in globalization win very very big, taking business away from very many.

Tom Friedman’s flat world? Not by a long shot.