Three Charts To Chew On….

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    I do think that people within both parties can change the system. Those people never get elected though. I am not telling you to give your disposable income to anyone.

    Your bill S-3816 is a joke. The person would need to do the same job as someone over seas with the same duties. Basically they would need to either be in manufacturing or in a call center. The 24 month exclusion isn’t enough for any large company to lay out the capital to move an operation that is overseas over to the US. Just because a democrat proposed it and a republican defeated it doesn’t mean it was a bill that would acocmplish anything.




    “Obama had the first 2 years of office where he could have easily passed legislation to close some of the loopholes.”

    sorry.. i am rolling on the floor laughing at thtat one…

    the number one agenda of the republican party as been to ensure that any legislation to benefit the economy is hampered enough to prevent his re-election.

    blaming that on Obama is more than a little self serving.

    Yes, he exists.

    Yes, he is a democrat.

    no, he is not living up to what democrats want from a president…

    the only think i blame Obama for is being naive enough to think that if he gave Republicans everything they asked for that they would cooperate reasonably.

    He should have come out with both guns blazing and told them to put up or shut up.




    you should perhaps take a second look at the number of people employed in call centers and tech support and software development overseas.

    the facilities already exist here in the united states to do those jobs.

    Many of them were being used for those purposes only a few years ago and have never been retrofitted for other tenants.



    Even if the facilities exist it still isn’t enough to offset the capital. You need to close the overseas centers, hire people, train people and re-equip the facilities and pay US wages. 24 months is not enough to offset even a fraction of those costs.




    but the increased business generated by exceptional customer support might just tip those scales ;->



    kind of curious what kind of jobs you want americans to do, then.

    your argument seems to be that we have to manufacture overseas because it costs industry less, and corporations pay no import duties to bring their stuff into the u.s.

    we have to have call centers overseas for the same reason.

    government jobs are too lucrative, and their pay and benefits should be slashed.

    construction jobs are too lucrative, and their pay and benefits should be slashed – or construction firms should hire the cheapest labor they can find, regardless of workers’ skill, criminal background, or citizenship status.

    ditto longshoremen.

    farming is for migrant workers.

    you know, not everyone can be investment bankers, engineers, CEO’s, business owners, doctors, lawyers, or architects. someone has to build the roads and bridges and schools and retail centers and high-rises and banks and houses and apartment buildings. someone has to grow our food. someone has to make all of the crap you consume. someone has to save your life when you choke on your veal. someone has to assemble your cars, trains, and airplanes. someone has to extinguish your burning office building. someone has to make sure you get clean water and reliable electricity. someone has to make sure that your turds keep flowing to the waste water treatment plants. someone has to operate those port cranes laden with cheap foreign goods.

    i’m talking about skilled labor that doesn’t necessarily require a four-year degree.

    i just don’t understand your idea – if you have one – of what america should be.

    is it that if you don’t have a degree and you work with your hands you must be an unambitious idiot and you don’t deserve to live as well as an IT guy or a salesman?

    this country was built by the middle class when people had good-paying jobs in manufacturing and construction. if you worked hard, you would be rewarded by your employer and your country with a comfortable life. hell, manufacturing alone provided the upper classes with a great deal of their wealth and the middle class with disposable income. that quality of life set the standard for what we should be, and i don’t like seeing it diminished or exported. it offends me.

    but now i’m starting to hear that we’re living beyond our means. we shouldn’t expect to live so comfortably.


    and now the majority of jobs are low-paying sales and service jobs. and it seems to me that republican policy is to build an economy solely on the consumption of cheap goods and services.

    i, on the other hand, want to build an economy on the creation of quality goods and services that support good-paying american jobs.

    seriously. what exactly do you expect the middle class to do for money? or are we just supposed to lower our sights, join the lower classes, and contribute to the balkanization of america? all because the people at the top shouldn’t pay taxes to help their country – which is overwhelmingly comprised of those less fortunate than they are? or to pay back the debts that they alone benefited from?

    and to stay on topic, republicans are right about one thing: putting people back to work will fill the government’s coffers, as well. and i, for one, would rather that the middle class was making better salaries and wages.



    Thank you, redblack. Your arguments are well-reasoned and polite. Very persuasive.

    You know, it’s interesting. I have TRIED to send my own job overseas many times.

    They just keep sending it back.




    i would point out that the middle class is far more than blue collar workers…

    the truth is that those who secured the kind of education that would once have moved them into the lower reaches of the upper classes are locked into their worst nightmare…

    not only are their incomes inadequate to support the middle class life style their blue collar parents provided…

    out of all taxpayers, they now pay the largest percentage of their incomes in taxes…

    and.. they are losing jobs too.

    Many of those who have now been unemployed or underemployed for several years are highly educated professionals.

    this isn’t a matter of blue collar vs white collar.

    It isn’t even a matter of those who work for employers vs those who are self employed..

    We are all in the same boat here.

    This is a matter of the top 1% or possibly top 2% whose only interest is in profitability vs the rest of us who actually make something with our hands.. even if it is only a balance sheet.

    it’s those who think money is a game that can never be won vs those who think you earn money to provide life’s necessities.

    it’s those who think of investments in term of short term economic payoff vs those of who see the value in investing now for a secure future.

    It the get the money and run crowd vs the earn it and invest it crowd.

    It’s really too bad that so many who are scrambling to maintain their place on the economic ladder are supporting the very policies that are cutting it out from under them.



    but it kind of is a matter of white collar versus blue collar, jo.

    the american dream has been transformed into something that’s unachievable: everyone strives to go to college so that they can be comfortable, but there’s declining compensation for doing the things that keep the infrastructure maintained, or for making the things that people consume.


    i’m saying that those blue collar jobs – with their historically competitive compensation – are crucial to the american economy. we should be doing everything possible to foster and protect them; to make sure that the people who populate those industries have purchasing power, too; and to make sure that future generations appreciate their importance and aren’t scared to learn a trade or craft – instead of using universities as job farms.

    without labor, there is no capital. i mean, why do you think they call it the stock exchange? part and parcel with stock yards. or the dow industrial 30? no farmer, no machine shop, no stock, no market.

    but i’ve heard republicans argue that our world is changing. that, as a nation, we no longer need to perform our own labor. i think that argument is anathema to the american dream.



    In this country, there’s been a general turning away from the whole concept of “the dignity of labor.” It’s reflected on many levels, from urbanites who think they’re too precious to cook their own meals (or even shop for their own groceries) to city managers who insist that it takes a college degree to be a firefighter.

    But it’s not simply a problem of attitude. There are economic forces at work here as well. And these forces have nothing to do with the cost of tea in China.

    Consider the competition between (illegal) immigrant and native-born workers. I often hear people making the case for liberalized immigration in these terms: “We need Mexican laborers because they’ll do jobs Americans won’t.”

    Hogwash! The only thing Mexican workers will do that Americans won’t is willingly work for substandard wages in substandard conditions. And shame on us for letting them do it!

    Think this is a Liberal or Conservative issue? Wrong. For every construction boss who votes Republican and hires a crew of “illegals,” there’s a limousine liberal who has an undocumented nanny he’s getting on the cheap.

    Who signed the last immigration amnesty bill?

    —Ronald Reagan.

    Who signed NAFTA?

    —Bill Clinton.

    ‘Course Clinton regrets that now. Or so he says.

    Bet there’s a lot of stuff he regrets . . . now.




    the American dream is mostly out of reach for white collar workers too

    why does it have to be blue collar vs white collar

    when it could be white collar with blue collar?

    We are all workers.

    I have always supported labor..

    and still do

    not just because i am aware that without the blue collar worker who actually makes things there is little work for the white collar worker

    but because as a white collar worker i owe a huge debt to blue collar union activists whose sacrifices provided me with my benefits

    We are so much stronger working together than we ever will be trying to carve out a larger slice of our shrinking part of the pie




    facebook poster today…

    United we bargain

    Divided we beg

    that about sums it up for me



    maybe a matter of semantics here, jo. when i say “white collar,” i usually don’t think of clerical workers, for example. i’m talking about stock brokers and lawyers – what the japanese call salaryman – and not so much the people who do their leg work.

    but you’re right. there are white collar laborers, just like there are blue collar businessmen.

    btw, i’ve had that “divided we beg” sticker on my hardhat for over 10 years. (yeah, yeah. i know that hardhats have a shelf life.) it’s right next to “american by birth. union by choice.”



    but to drag the topic back toward macroeconomics, deficits, and debt, we have to return people to full employment for the economy to recover. and i’m still curious what kind of jobs republicans are talking about creating in america by cutting taxes and regulations.

    i also want to know how they think merely creating that job will create demand for whatever it is that that worker is doing.

    that’s backwards.

    and, yeah, next i’m going to use george walker bush as an example of what not to do with a budget surplus: what you don’t do is look the american people in the eye, say that the government has no business running a positive ledger, tell them it’s actually their money, and commence to writing so many “rebate” checks that you have to run another budget deficit.




    i will admit that a certain segment of stockbrokers and lawyers have hit the jackpot…

    but these days there isn’t so much difference between the salaryman and what you consider workers.

    think those who work as attys and will never make partner.. junior traders.. software engineers, most scientists… etc…

    there was a time when the shoe may have been on a different foot.. but that time has long passed and the “salaryman” who doesn’t know it is simply fooling themselves.

    What we have in america today are speculators and workers…

    the sooner we workers unite the sooner we will have to stop begging from the speculators …

    hubby posted a link on facebook that i think you will appreciate…

    with any luck i will be right back with it

    this explains why everyone got so economically stupid…



    Wow this thing exploded over the weekend.

    Nowhere did I say I think all americans should be doctors or lawyers. Thats just how you infer it because your opinion is biased. I only said its not enough to get the jobs to come back. We have to first find a way to keep more jobs from leaving they we can worry about getting them back.

    I am not for tarrif free trade and NAFTA was a job loser for americans. I am not for avoiding taxes on profits. I also believe if you are going to offer someone $1 and they have to spend $10 they won’t do it either.



    bostonman: everyone’s opinion is biased; not just mine. but don’t take that to mean i don’t like republicans or conservatives as a rule. it’s policy and policymakers that i’m interested in talking about. but i do believe that my political bias favors people who work for a living. too long now has policy favored those who earn income through movement of capital while those with brick-and-mortar jobs see across-the-board declines.

    (YADATROT: that policy has exploded deficits and debt.)

    i’m encouraged that you acknowledge that “free” trade hasn’t worked out as planned, though.

    the $1/$10 comment is interesting.

    for one thing, $1 is $1, and it doesn’t have anything to do with spending $10 that you’d have to spend anyway if you want to hire someone. i.e. for 2 years, you only have to spend $9. it adds up.

    based on your comment, i’d be interested to see the breakdown in expenses for an average small business – one that does $1 million in revenue (not profit), just for round numbers’ sake.

    what i’d want to know is what percentage of outlays go to various governments, what percentage goes to wages and benefits, and what percentage goes to other private industry – for communication, paper, fuel, vehicles, shipping/receiving, raw materials, insurance, power, water, etc. (i know that business gets favorable rates for industrial/commercial use of power and water, and i didn’t include it as a tax or fee, even though they’re usually publicly-owned.)

    my point is that taxes and fees are just another business expense, and they rise and fall based on the same principles as the “free” market. they also happen to be the easiest target to gripe about when that cost rises – and/or try to get reduced or eliminated – with wages and benefits a close second.

    because business owners can’t exactly go around whining to private sector suppliers and service providers about the high cost of doing business, now, can they?

    but to hear a lot of conservatives describe it, 90% of it is wages, taxes, and fees, forced on them by the rest of cruel humanity; 5% goes to bills; and they only get to keep a measly 5% for themselves or reinvestment. and the only reason they’re in business in the first place is to provide some bum with a job, out of the goodness of their hearts.

    and, yes, i’m using hyperbole to make a point. please don’t take it personally.



    I don’t know if I can answer your question with a one size fits all answer. I have been in charge of the financial performance of a few companies and they were all different. As a general rule though for one dollar of revenue 30-35% goes to wages, 5 to 10% to benefits and payroll taxes, 10% goes to interest financing 10% goes to rent and lease expenses and the rest goes to variable G&A. Now, this is a traditional business model. In retail you will have higher rent expenses and lower payroll. In property management you have higher interest and payroll.

    So, it really just depends. Cash flow left over after expenses will usually go to pay down balance sheet items like outstanding or pending liabilities.



    what i’m getting at is all of these onerous fees and taxes that republicans claim is crippling business, and the recent national talking point that unnamed, unspecific regulation is doing the same. (since no one can factually claim that taxes are any higher under democrats.)

    if your model is indicative of most business owners’ reality, i don’t see that there’s a whole lot they can blame on “government,” except when it comes to broader social and macroeconomic policy – which may or may not affect them directly. for example, if 10% of a business goes to payroll taxes and benefits, then the ACA – aka obamacare – won’t affect them, since they provide their employees with medical insurance. there’s no new tax for them, since they are complying with the new law.

    keep in mind that i don’t run a business and i don’t want to.

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