Comments on: The systemic plight of labor http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/05/01/the-systemic-plight-of-labor/ A slice of lime in the soda Sun, 26 Oct 2014 19:05:02 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.5 By: Strych09 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/05/01/the-systemic-plight-of-labor/comment-page-1/#comment-46906 Mon, 06 May 2013 18:54:35 +0000 https://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=21548#comment-46906 What vjvalk wrote above is spot-on, and the comment above it gets to what a 401(k) society is really all about: INCREASING vulnerability and risk for those not in a great position to handle it (most of the working class in this country is a single missed paycheck away from financial disaster), and then allowing the overclass to blame the victims for a plight forced upon them by marketplace conditions created by said overclass.

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By: Ts2 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/05/01/the-systemic-plight-of-labor/comment-page-1/#comment-46888 Sat, 04 May 2013 01:55:17 +0000 https://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=21548#comment-46888 Friedman’s in laws are no longer even close to being billionaires.

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By: jimmy37 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/05/01/the-systemic-plight-of-labor/comment-page-1/#comment-46879 Fri, 03 May 2013 16:41:43 +0000 https://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=21548#comment-46879 “Low employee wages are one reason the economy is so weak”

HMMMM… You don’t think 10 million illegal aliens working at below-market rates aren’t contributing to this problem?

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By: SeeleyK http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/05/01/the-systemic-plight-of-labor/comment-page-1/#comment-46876 Fri, 03 May 2013 09:44:14 +0000 https://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=21548#comment-46876 In reply to mwwaters above and the graph he/she linked to:

There is no way we spend 65% to 70% of our GDP on investment. Investment is plotted against the right-hand axis in your graph, and so it rises from 10% to 14%.

And it doesn’t make sense to wrap in residential investment, since that doesn’t make workers more productive.

More generally, it seems like a somewhat ad hoc argument. If you go back to 1929 and look at: total investment; non-residential fixed investment; and compensation of employees, three things show up:

1. There isn’t the rise in investment that shows up in the dshort chart you linked to.

2. Compensation as a share of GDP actually rose from 1930 to 1980 before starting to fall.

3. 1980 was actually about the peak of investment as well.

http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/gra ph/?id=A006RE1A156NBEA,A4002E1A156NBEA,A 008RE1A156NBEA,

www.thedanceofthehippo.blogspot.com

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By: suzanner http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/05/01/the-systemic-plight-of-labor/comment-page-1/#comment-46871 Fri, 03 May 2013 00:56:27 +0000 https://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=21548#comment-46871 Well, the only thing Friedman got right was the part about the disappearing floors, ceiling and walls. Guess those Bangladeshi workers weren’t motivated enough on their 35 cents an hour. Guess this world wasn’t “tailored” for the garment industry slave laborers, just their corporate exploiters. What a tonedeaf analogy to use a week after the deadliest garment factory accident in history. Does Friedman have any idea that he sounds like a clueless, pompous a..? I mean seriously. Someone needs to sit him down and have a little chat at his next tony dinner party.

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By: dtc http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/05/01/the-systemic-plight-of-labor/comment-page-1/#comment-46866 Thu, 02 May 2013 21:31:28 +0000 https://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=21548#comment-46866 To paraphrase Obama from his first campaign: “Ownership society? This should really be called the You’re On Your Own Society.”

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By: dcarris http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/05/01/the-systemic-plight-of-labor/comment-page-1/#comment-46865 Thu, 02 May 2013 21:03:24 +0000 https://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=21548#comment-46865 “I can only hope that he isn’t making a super-tasteless reference to the recent disaster in Bangladesh.” Surely realize that’s not remotely intended. The tastelessness, alas, is yours.

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By: Deranger10 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/05/01/the-systemic-plight-of-labor/comment-page-1/#comment-46864 Thu, 02 May 2013 20:46:32 +0000 https://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=21548#comment-46864 Didn’t GGP (the company Friedman’s wife’s family owned) declare bankruptcy a few years back and lose nearly all its value? Poor guy is probably only a multimillionaire now.

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By: vjvalk http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/05/01/the-systemic-plight-of-labor/comment-page-1/#comment-46863 Thu, 02 May 2013 20:18:53 +0000 https://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=21548#comment-46863 “401k’s fail because people are weak, spend too much, save too little, retire too early, invest their money to timidly, pull money out to send their kids to college… and on and on. We all know that.”

No, we don’t all know that. 401ks fail because most people do not make enough money over the course of their careers to put enough money into defined-contribution plans to fund a full retirement, while also meeting other expenses. People don’t save too little or pull money out of their 401ks because they are weak. They do it because things like health care, education and real estate have become extremely expensive while real wages for the middle-class have been flat-to-down.

Problems with fees (which are real) aside, there is no way that the 401k, or any other defined-contribution plan, can work if most people do not earn enough money to contribute meaningfully to it. The problem with 401ks isn’t weakness, it’s stagnant incomes.

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By: rover27 http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2013/05/01/the-systemic-plight-of-labor/comment-page-1/#comment-46861 Thu, 02 May 2013 19:56:49 +0000 https://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/?p=21548#comment-46861 Friedman is a plutocratic horse’s ass. As are the Republican commentors here defending him.

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