Citizen's Dividend

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MachineGhost
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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by MachineGhost » Tue Jun 07, 2016 10:30 pm

jafs wrote: Investing and saving don't generally improve productivity, certainly not directly, and only under some narrow circumstances, indirectly. Except for ipo's, the stock market is virtually all a "secondary market" - money/stocks are just moving from one person to another, and none of it goes to the company any more.
I specifically didn't mention the secondary market because it doesn't have any direct effects, so don't bring that up.
jafs wrote: Gold is complex - I imagine that much of it is also a secondary market, but I don't know for sure. In some circumstances, investments in precious metals and the like sometimes involve supporting brutal dictatorships in other countries (blood diamonds come to mind).
Well, you imagine wrong; gold isn't an investment, its a commodity so someone is always profiting from transactions. And you're really reaching to make an association between blood diamonds and gold. All the surface level, easy to get at gold nuggets is long, long gone unlike blood diamonds.
"All generous minds have a horror of what are commonly called 'Facts'. They are the brute beasts of the intellectual domain." -- Thomas Hobbes

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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by MachineGhost » Tue Jun 07, 2016 10:37 pm

jafs wrote: Lower income folks aren't going to be investing like that, almost certainly - they'll be spending it, which is fine economically. But the goal of increasing their productivity, lessening the dependence on government, etc. seems uncertain to me, especially if the amounts are higher than subsistence level, which you seem to prefer.
Why are you so fixated on the CD recipient increasing one's personal productivity instead of that of others? That is not how capitalism works. You invest or pay others as the inducement for them to increase their productivity for mutual benefits. You only increase your own if you're selling something or want your first job or a better job. The point of the CD is to provide a floor so you can take risks like that. Taking risks is how you improve productivity.
"All generous minds have a horror of what are commonly called 'Facts'. They are the brute beasts of the intellectual domain." -- Thomas Hobbes

Disclaimer: I am not a broker, dealer, investment advisor, physician, theologian or prophet.  I should not be considered as legally permitted to render such advice!
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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by MachineGhost » Tue Jun 07, 2016 10:40 pm

pugchief wrote:Does anyone think our benevolent government would actually close departments and shrink? History tells us otherwise. Government is like a Hydra. You cut off one head [department] and two more grow in its place.
Maybe not at the formal agency level, but government employees are not immune from technological unemployment either. And the CD will actaully pave the way for getting rid of those parasites.

The CD seems almost like the holy grail in what it can accomplish for "Starving the Beast". O0
"All generous minds have a horror of what are commonly called 'Facts'. They are the brute beasts of the intellectual domain." -- Thomas Hobbes

Disclaimer: I am not a broker, dealer, investment advisor, physician, theologian or prophet.  I should not be considered as legally permitted to render such advice!
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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by jafs » Wed Jun 08, 2016 7:51 am

Pointedstick wrote:
jafs wrote:Sure, that makes sense.

But, I thought the idea of the cd was to improve the recipients' productivity directly, so the thought was that low income folks wouldn't just get it and spend it.

Current programs like food stamps/subsidized housing do the same thing economically, right?
Sort of. Food stamps is better, but subsidized housing distort the real estate market in an area and often does more harm than good in the aggregate.

The theoretical advantages of a citizen's dividend are multifaceted: it replaces a series of government bureaucracies and social programs; has near-zero overhead associated with it; cannot easily become the target of fraud and abuse; does not create any perverse incentives not to work; and is actually fairer and more humane than the current safely net, which is a complicated system that can be capricious and challenging to navigate.
Well, I guess it depends on what you mean by subsidized housing - Section 8 housing means that the government pays some of the rent for the tenant, if I understand it right. So it wouldn't matter if we gave people money they spent directly on that or if the government did it, from an economic benefit analysis.

I agree it would be simpler, although not as simple as suggested, if adjustments are made for differences in costs of living, and if sophie's idea of tax/revenue neutrality was enacted.

One could argue that giving money to people that don't need it, like you and me, is by definition fraudulent in some ways. And I can guarantee that any system we put in place will generate some people trying to scam the system - that just seems like human nature to me.

It has the same effect on working or not working for low income people, if they can live off of the cd.

I agree about the complexity and difficulty of navigating the current system.
Last edited by jafs on Wed Jun 08, 2016 8:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by jafs » Wed Jun 08, 2016 7:55 am

MachineGhost wrote:
jafs wrote: Investing and saving don't generally improve productivity, certainly not directly, and only under some narrow circumstances, indirectly. Except for ipo's, the stock market is virtually all a "secondary market" - money/stocks are just moving from one person to another, and none of it goes to the company any more.
I specifically didn't mention the secondary market because it doesn't have any direct effects, so don't bring that up.
jafs wrote: Gold is complex - I imagine that much of it is also a secondary market, but I don't know for sure. In some circumstances, investments in precious metals and the like sometimes involve supporting brutal dictatorships in other countries (blood diamonds come to mind).
Well, you imagine wrong; gold isn't an investment, its a commodity so someone is always profiting from transactions. And you're really reaching to make an association between blood diamonds and gold. All the surface level, easy to get at gold nuggets is long, long gone unlike blood diamonds.
You said investing improves productivity - the kind of investing most of us talk about is investing in the stock market, which is a secondary market. If you meant you'd invest directly in a start up business, that's a different story. But it's not part of the pp investments, which involve stock market index funds. So if you took your $15K and invested in your pp, there's no direct connection to companies.

It depends again on what kind of gold investments - most people on here buy gold coins. So if I go into my dealer and buy some coins, then hold them for a while and sell them back to him/her, isn't that a secondary market? It's a bunch of coins trading hands just like stocks do, not somebody buying gold bullion from a mine in South America.

I remember when people were upset about buying South African Kruggerands, don't you?

And, please don't tell me what to discuss in my posts - I don't do that to you.
Last edited by jafs on Wed Jun 08, 2016 8:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by jafs » Wed Jun 08, 2016 7:58 am

MachineGhost wrote:
jafs wrote: Lower income folks aren't going to be investing like that, almost certainly - they'll be spending it, which is fine economically. But the goal of increasing their productivity, lessening the dependence on government, etc. seems uncertain to me, especially if the amounts are higher than subsistence level, which you seem to prefer.
Why are you so fixated on the CD recipient increasing one's personal productivity instead of that of others? That is not how capitalism works. You invest or pay others as the inducement for them to increase their productivity for mutual benefits. You only increase your own if you're selling something or want your first job or a better job. The point of the CD is to provide a floor so you can take risks like that. Taking risks is how you improve productivity.
Because that's one of the basic stated goals of it from the presentation on here.

People say lower income folks will now get a job, because they don't have perverse incentives not to work.

I just don't see that happening much, if the dividend is high enough to live on (in your version it's substantially higher than in sophie's).
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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by jafs » Wed Jun 08, 2016 7:59 am

.
Last edited by jafs on Wed Jun 08, 2016 8:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by jafs » Wed Jun 08, 2016 8:00 am

MachineGhost wrote:
pugchief wrote:Does anyone think our benevolent government would actually close departments and shrink? History tells us otherwise. Government is like a Hydra. You cut off one head [department] and two more grow in its place.
Maybe not at the formal agency level, but government employees are not immune from technological unemployment either. And the CD will actaully pave the way for getting rid of those parasites.

The CD seems almost like the holy grail in what it can accomplish for "Starving the Beast". O0
And where will all of those formerly employed people work?
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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by pugchief » Wed Jun 08, 2016 10:22 am

jafs wrote:
MachineGhost wrote:
pugchief wrote:Does anyone think our benevolent government would actually close departments and shrink? History tells us otherwise. Government is like a Hydra. You cut off one head [department] and two more grow in its place.
Maybe not at the formal agency level, but government employees are not immune from technological unemployment either. And the CD will actaully pave the way for getting rid of those parasites.

The CD seems almost like the holy grail in what it can accomplish for "Starving the Beast". O0
And where will all of those formerly employed people work?
They won't need to work, because they will be receiving a citizen's dividend. ;D
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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by clacy » Wed Jun 08, 2016 10:49 am

After thinking about this some more,.... I think a CD would likely result in inflation, which would essentially adjust prices to account for the CD.

I think the net result would be that intelligent, hard working people would make good decisions with their CD money, such as investing it, starting businesses, using it for education, etc.

People that don't have the ability to make good decisions would generally make poor decisions with it.

Likely there would be little to no effect on wealth distribution, but we could sleep well knowing that there was a basic safety net for people at least.
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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by sophie » Wed Jun 08, 2016 11:02 am

clacy wrote:After thinking about this some more,.... I think a CD would likely result in inflation, which would essentially adjust prices to account for the CD.
Maybe but not necessarily. I don't think increased spending is all it takes to create inflation. For that you need an expansion of the money supply, which the CD would not do. It's going to shift spending from funding government bureaucracy to consumer goods and investment. That may increase some prices but it would be a giant shot in the arm for the GDP, so salaries should rise as well.

Except for jaf of course, since he doesn't need it :-)
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Re: Citizen's Dividend

Post by jafs » Wed Jun 08, 2016 1:01 pm

pugchief wrote:
jafs wrote:
MachineGhost wrote:
Maybe not at the formal agency level, but government employees are not immune from technological unemployment either. And the CD will actaully pave the way for getting rid of those parasites.

The CD seems almost like the holy grail in what it can accomplish for "Starving the Beast". O0
And where will all of those formerly employed people work?
They won't need to work, because they will be receiving a citizen's dividend. ;D
Even better!
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