The Case for Global Income Limits

solutions to the problem revealed in a recent Bloomberg story “Richest 1% of Americans Close to Surpassing Wealth of Middle Class .”

As one who has always enjoyed “word problems”  in math classes, we can achieve some remarkable insights  by carefully reading “the facts”.  As you will see when we outline wealth concentration as “The fishing hole problem.”

First, though, we have some headlines to scale.  After which we go swimming through the charts.  Eventually, though, we get around to floating some useful thinking.   We trust you’ll catch-ion.

Frame it as taking the billionaires to Walden Pond for an outing.

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39 thoughts on “The Case for Global Income Limits”

  1. What what what..

    20% !

    G – have U lost sight of Ure senses ?

    If Ure are paying 20% tax rate U R doing it wrong Im afraid.

    Offshore that LLC/Trust in the Caymans or Belize or … 15% is the rate.
    Check with young – recently graduated Petroleum & Mining Engineers – work for a Foreign Energy/Energy Svcs/Mining Co. and offshore your Bank – where your Salary – Paycheck is deposited. When its time to buy that new Tesla, Smart Home.. – repatriate your $ at 15%..every penny counts.

    Plus offshore LLC’s are virtually untouchable to greedy US citizens and their greedy lawyers looking to sue rich folks for an easy score- daughter was sued 3 years ago by scumbag on a skate board stopped at a Stop sign.

    Filed case in Philly (lib jurisdiction) to avoid conservative courts in our county. In the end case was dismissed and State Insurance Regulators were waiting for skateboarding scumbag.

    $10 mill net worth aint gonna cut it if U wanna participate in “hot” IPO’s with Ure wealth advisor/brokerage house..peanuts apparently.

    ? Have you considered the “human” element to mechanical levitation & time travel research/experiments.

    The 17 Horns blown by 17 monks in a semi circle – who just happen to be in a “trance” like state brought about by circular – pattern breathing – exact same technique used when playing a Didgeridoo – something to focus Ure “minds eye” on..

    * tingling feeling comes up Ure spine – learn to feel it coming – focus on it mentally – direct it up the back of skull along spine – to the eyebrow area.. happens in the blink of an eye – Ure minds eye is the most powerful tool in known universe -imho

    Time to go take some moar money from the fools on the street – unbelievable!

    Thanks for long term cap gain piece of news – almost forgot to start rolling winners into 2020 – gotta eat some bitter losers this month and next..curses on the IRS – CURSES.

  2. The global concentration of wealth is in large part a consequence of the 2008 bailout. If the bailout had not happened and the capitalist system had been allowed to work many billionaires would have been wiped out financially. Bad investments would have been bankrupted. The middle class would have seen its savings protected in its bank accounts and some of its investments, as a result of protections put in place by the Congress in the 1930’s. Instead we now have this hyper concentration of wealth which governments are trying to claw back with wealth taxes which will destroy their economies.

    In fact the depression when it hits will be brutal because people will be limited in their abilities to accumulate savings. Savings and not debt are the basis of capitalism. When a country puts in place tax policies and legal systems that prevent the accumulation of capital you end up with economic collapse and grinding poverty. Look at Venezuela’s current predicament for a clue as to what is coming to a western country near you.

    As a nation or an individual you cannot “spend yourself rich”.

  3. MP3 is good. The “higher” the format, the more Time/Money (a uni-thing amazingly like Space-Time) it takes to “make” it.

    Turning out a weekly MP3 with few SFX and a little music won’t burn you out.

    A “radio” show can be a one-man operation (Jean Sheperd, Art Bell), but a “viddy-o” or even a sound plus grafix combo transport pack will involve other people and a lot of coordination and a “director.” Don’t even TRY to be a director AND “the talent” at the same time. A few great media geniuses have managed it, but it’s super-difficult. Few G.M.G.s try it more than once or twice.

    Simple is good, and it’s “Theatre Of The Mind.” Best done withOUT visuals to limit an audience’s options and imagination.

    Word.

    Don’t do a complex thing if it doesn’t add a LOT of extra content.

    • I definitely have to second the decision on MP3 as a format! I can load a flash drive in a few moments with what I want to hear and leave in the car with the radio reading the flash drive. I can’t do that with an MP4 or any video format. Of course, I could fuss around downloading it to a phone or pad and then bypassing the radio, but that’s extra work and may be legally dubious in some states. The KISS principal rules!

  4. This is where my conservative side kicks in. Does anyone really need a billion dollars? Yes…There are now nearly 90 Billionaires in the Bay Area as of last week…when the last of the 2019 IPO’s released their lock. We also have the largest concentration of millionaires on planet earth as well. And the theme I keep on hearing from many of these people, since most of the millionaires are my clients…is that it’s Never enough.

    There is trickle down that really works in most cases here though. We have the highest concentration of active construction projects in the US…that alone employs thousands. At an average of $25 an hour for laborers and escalating to over $50 an hour for equipment operators, and skilled workers, blue collar workers are thriving. Engineers, project managers, are making 6 figure salaries…Add in the ancillary benefits of growth like restaurants, stores, transportation, utilities, insurance, entertainment and of course, my favorite…Real Estate.

    We all benefit from their wealth, and like natures own Cleaner Fish, (From Wikipedia… Cleaner fish are fish that show a specialist feeding strategy[1] by providing a service to other species, referred to as clients)..
    … we all can be wealthy if we manage the process properly. And, for the most part, it is working here in the Bay Area, because the growth continues to escalate in record fashion. And people like me that service the wealthy…well, you get the idea.

    That’s how it is supposed to work..except in areas that don’t have that luxury of upward growth…In those parts of the country, like the prevalence of Central American corruption, suppression sets in the Heartland of the United States. It becomes every person for themselves, because the rich aren’t as rich and the trickle down is not as lucrative and it becomes a vicious cycle of mediocrity.

    The key is to spread the big tech corporate jobs geographically to affordable parts of the country. Does an administrative or CSR role need to be in the Bay Area…No…Many can’t afford to live here anyway…Can some of these millions of square feet of office space being built here, be built in Ohio, Kentucky, or Tennessee? Of course…And that’s happening right now. It’s good common sense. Of course, many conservative fake news outlets will say that the Silicon Valley is experiencing a huge exodus, due to our politics and the fake poop on the streets…to the contrary, we are over crowded…We need balance. Just look at a map…we have land lock issues because of the enormous San Francisco Bay and the coastal mountains. Some of the beneficiaries of tech relocation have beenSacramento, Reno, Phoenix, Tucson, Cleveland, Detroit, Kansas City, Austin, Nashville, and Atlanta. When you create more jobs, that creates more jobs and that creates more jobs…The coasts are great…until it becomes so crowded, it ain’t so great anymore. Speed that wealth in this way…not the way Bernie and Warren want to.

    • Interesting thoughts Mark. I’m sure there are plenty of “unregistered” millionaires both in the Bay Area and out. Once you earn a lifetime plus supply of money, there’s little incentive for some to make even more. After all, you really don’t need to, and if you can’t spend it and don’t have heirs or other loved ones, it’s just money. This is certainly a reason for dark pools unmoving. There may be a reasonable cap on wealth, but even if there was, how would you even be aware of the wealth as to cap it? And who is to determine what’s “reasonable”?

      Many people work extremely hard to have the choice of NOT working. Once they achieve that goal, there’s plenty of ways to spend time without either making or spending much money at all. Their money will remain fairly static for the duration of those peoples’ lifetime and possibly beyond, since they can live on principal alone for the duration. Why even risk assets when you have so much?

      Unfortunately, this is not good for the economy at large.

    • Haha ha you and your ilk can’t take credit for Austin. Ya’ll are leaving your hell hole and expanding here cause ya’ll pooped in your own house. We didn’t need ya, ya’ll needed us. You and your trickle-down crap, thought you didn’t like Reagan. The only people benefitting from that TDCrap is the illegals. All you gotta do is look around and see what the down and out displaced citizens are doing in your disgusting city.

    • “There are now nearly 90 Billionaires in the Bay Area as of last week…”

      OTFLMAO…in the bay area where food stamp poverty level is at a quarter mil a year… well at least they won’t be having to shizt on the sidewalk .. and can eat at mcdonalds once in a while LOL LOL LOL….

  5. Ohh goodness G – tell us Ure not going all sen. Fauxcahantous/sen. Sandernista.

    Personally find wealth accumulation over 2.5 Bil. to be repugnant – the accumulators – not the cashish per se..”let them eat cake” – M.A.

    Capitalism is a Brutal system – meant to grind the avg joe down to dust..”suffering succotash” -Sylvester

    Family/Generational money is the “blessing” needed to compete with the dragons(BIS)/ zurich nomes/greedsters.

    This deplorable has vivid memories of the great depression – the desperate struggles my great grandparents (both sides) endured were constantly drilled into our heads growing up.

    Blessed with grandparents and parents who “got it” – there is tiny tinee amount of generational money.
    Like any inheritance, it ideally should be invested In the Family, or passed on in the fullness of time to the next generation.
    We are stewards- using income from such money for worthy purposes when needed but largely saving it for the needs of the next generation – which usually seem to exceed the current generations needs.
    Ideally we should add to the principal as circumstances permit. Unfortunately circumstances undermine our best efforts to conserve resources.

    If it were not so, nearly everyone whose family has been in this country for several generations would be wealthy.

    -Opinion – like an arsehole – everybody has one..

    • “This deplorable has vivid memories of the great depression – the desperate struggles my great grandparents (both sides) endured were constantly drilled into our heads growing up.”

      YES…. I never understood until I found my grandmothers books.. they kept their budget on a tablet.. the four hundred they made in a whole year…
      It really didn’t hit home until I took care of people that had escaped the concentration camps.. sometimes when I would check on them in the night.. they would be hiding and crying in the closet.. assuming I was a NAZI coming to take them away.. the daughter.. she was a professor of one of the more prestigious colleges in our country.. and she would have to talk to them.. then to hear the story about their oppulent living and how they came to take it all away..
      the stories of my grand parents.. my father grew up in chicago.. he told stories about gangsters bringing a truck around and every home that had children got milk and a box of food.. food for the soup kitchens to serve… today we have food stamps.. the same line just not as graphic as the soup kitchen lines..

      what is surprising is the answer is simple.. go back to the philosophy of the corporate leaders that came out of the depression.. put your friends and neighbors to work.. make a profit but don’t get greedy..I am a poor man by many standards.. but I always share what I have with those that I see in great need.. because I have been there myself.. I now how it is.. and what is a little bit of sharing.. a new tire or two.. a coat a meal.. no one leaves hungry from our home.. if they do its their own fault …
      when was the last time you were in the line at a burger king or mcdonalds or my favorite.. WENDY’s.. (they will split the sandwich up so you can take it to work and have a hot hamburger.. yum) and said let me pay for the car behind me as well as mine.. I do it all the time.. it isn’t hard .. I get a satisfaction if the car behind me has kids.. I do the same in restaurants.. I tip high and if I see a dad and mom with a couple of little kids.. the dad scope out his billfold to make sure he has enough before he orders.. good lord if I got it he and his wife and kids eat for free…
      same thing if I see someone searching a dumpster.. tell the restaurant manager bring him in set him down and let him order.. I am paying for it..

  6. We don’t have a income problem in the US, we have a spending problem. I get it, punish others for their success, because stealing their assets is punishment. But what is it supposed to mean to be a free citizen of the US. Does it mean to single out one group of people to pay all the bills, to steal their assets to pay for what others want? You fall into the same traps and what draws college students to democrats. Who do think is better suited to spend an income? Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk or Nancy Pelosi. Because that is really our choice. People spend the money they earn the way they see fit or people like Nancy steal it to buy votes. I much prefer to see people like Elon and Bill Gates to use their assets in ways their incredible minds see to improve the world. Imagine if Elon did not have capital to start SpaceX, and to dramatically reduce the cost to space. Certainly nothing like that will come from dimwits in government.

    • Near as I can tell, you’re not a subscriber and didn’t read the article. Specifically, no one who had actually read the article would have written ”
      I get it, punish others for their success, because stealing their assets is punishment.”
      That’s not what the article is about. It’s about capping personal wealth in the %500-million area and for existing companies, breaking them up over a certain size so they don’t “buy government”
      Which – if you had read the article – you would have understood.
      Please refrain from commenting on that which you don’t know. (or Read) because distortion of facts is the kind of thing than can get you on the banned list here.

  7. George, loved the “Pond” analogy. What is in the pond? Predators, prey and suckers.

    Have a good birthday and take the time off from writing. Kick back and enjoy the time with your lady. Take a cruise? Go down island and sit on the beach watching for the “Green Glow” as the sun goes down.

  8. The Estate Tax was established to prevent the transfer of excess wealth when it was 55%. This would make the rich poorer & the government richer so they could buy votes by giving out freebies. Good idea, poor execution due to greedy polititions.

    Trump made sure his kin folk & fellow rich folks got more in his tax reform scam. Since most billionaires are still alive, Trump saved them billions in estate taxes. Remember this massive accumulation of wealth was earned mostly by people who are still alive…The tech revolution.

    Conclusion: nothing has changed thruout history…It is all about the money, which buys power. Except there is much more money floating around today. Every homeowner in SF has a home worth a million dollars.

  9. I could comment ,.dare I.
    AI, it’s like pulling teeth with blacksmith tongs.

    But it’s like a sinkhole,

    a natural cavity that’s infected and it’s draining,

    and the more you nurture it,
    it becomes 24 hours a day,

    that is for cutting you off from the Tree of Life,

    it’s like a game of whist,

    where forming partners against the opposite,

    Squatter sovereignty,

    What we don’t have is an island,

    https://youtu.be/gm7PHl-0LUo

    Examine the past and then determine what is your purpose what is your Divine Purpose,

    As most of y’all know here on this website ,your thoughts have wings and those vibrational frequencies radiates from a radial, which is you each and everyone of you,

    And when you all have the same thoughts those thoughts have a better chance of becoming reality,

    By photomechanical interplay,

    So beware of the Supposititious information, regarding you as a provisional specimen equivalent to those of World War II

    • “Examine the past and then determine what is your purpose what is your Divine Purpose,”

      Exactly Bryce..
      Where I found my purpose through life.. was to be there when others were at their weakest.. to try and be their strength.. help them up when they have fallen.. ( which is why I am a die hard Sea Hawks fan.. They play the game play hard but after the play offer the other team a hand up off of the field..)

      theres a real good reason why I won’t ever win the lottery to.. for one.. I would start at one end of the state and work my way to the power companies with the solar towers.. just to show them my idea will work cheaper and more efficient and they won’t loose control over the power which is what they fear…. I would rebuild our community and get a free cancer treament center here.. turn it into a norman rockwell town..

  10. This is a treasure trove for readers that are digging for a research break paper,

    Thorough- the administrative policy of Trump by himself as being a method of carrying through his ideas in spite of all opposition, we’re saying this casually as in a well sweep which we mentioned the other day,

    It’s a movement that will recreate staminal,

    For a low economic barometric draft,

    Autonomous Republic by Flushing

  11. From what I have seen, the very rich tend to continuously act out in a never ending quest for bragging rights and trophies in everything they come in contact with, to a point that goes beyond obsession. The problem is, big shot leftists act pretty much the same way. All of the bastards want to take what you have spent a lifetime accumulating as a trophy, leave you to die laying by the side of the road, and brag about it to their cronies. And I mean this quite literally.
    The income tax in this country has never been fair, equitable, or even progressive. The folks in the middle income ranges have always shouldered the highest tax burden; the low income taxpayers pay at low tax rates, and the high income taxpayers give everyone the finger. To his credit, Trump corrected decades of bracket creep for the middle income taxpayers.
    The first place to start correcting the problem with wealth concentration is to reinstate restrictions on political campaign contributions. If it takes a constitutional amendment to keep the Supreme Corrupts from interfering, then so be it. The second place to start correcting the inequality issues is with inheritance taxes targeting the ultra-rich, and tax shelters intended to protect assets from inheritance taxes.
    Most of the other schemes tried to limit wealth concentration have failed historically, and are counter-productive.

    • “The second place to start correcting the inequality issues is with inheritance taxes targeting the ultra-rich, and tax shelters intended to protect assets from inheritance taxes.”

      Who decides who’s “ultra rich” or even defines the term?

      Why do believe it is fair or reasonable to tax assets and income that’ve already been taxed?

      What makes you think the “ultra rich” won’t just gather up their marbles and go play elsewhere?

      • I seem to be seeing the 500 million dollar US figure being tossed about by others. I could raise you another 500 million or three.
        Was the income and assets of that fringe upper income bracket taxed at the same rate that your income is being taxed at, or at a fraction of your tax rate? You know the answer.
        High estate taxes were around when the US was in periods of high economic growth. Now we have stagnating money supply velocity, and no growth. Stagnant hoards don’t trickle down. The only trickle of gold I see coming from on high ain’t precious metals.
        So, what has kept the rich from picking up their marbles and renouncing their citizenship in previous eras? Why have estate taxes for the ultra rich become taboo? Talk about a conditioned response.
        Question- Why is it fair to tax estates of dead multi-billionaires? Answer- ‘Cause their dead. Divvy up 90% of their hoard over the first couple of billion, then put’em up a pretty plaque in eternal gratitude like that other reader suggested. RIP in [redacted as ungrateful] peace.

  12. I don’t like your analogy, because it assumes “wealth” is a zero-sum game. Physical dollars, or bullion may be zero-sum, but actual “wealth” is limitless. I can think of no moral reason why, if you earn a dollar and I earn a quarter, I should be entitled to take from you, a part of your dollar, simply because I earned less, nor can I think of a reason why you should be compelled to give away a part of that dollar which you earned by your own effort, to subsidize those who are too lazy to work, or whose labor or life-plan was less-efficient than yours.

    That said, should the really wealthy “share the wealth?” Absolutely, but that should be a moral choice on their part, not compulsory theft by a political entity. A prime sharing example would be Andrew Carnegie. Carnegie became the world’s richest man in the early 1900s. He then gave nearly all of it away. He did not go strolling the streets of New York, passing out $10,000 bills to panhandlers. No, he gave hundreds of millions of people of every background, panhandlers, laborers, housewives, inventors, and even scientists and engineers, the TOOLS by which they could become wealthy and successful in all aspects of life, IF THEY CHOSE TO DO SO, by building 2500 libraries around the World, and stocking them with information.

    I suggest folks search out the billionaires of Venezuela, or for that matter, the billionaires of Germany or France (y’all can search any other country, but I happen to know these three are easy to find numbers on.) Note the percentage of “superrich” in these countries, the percentage of property and industry they own, and the percentage of politicians they influence, control, or flat-out own.

    “Cliff’s Notes:” whether a nation’s prevailing economic system is communist or capitalist, or a hybrid like fascism or sharia, you’ll find a higher concentration of wealth in a smaller percentage of “superrich,” that these “superrich” own a much higher percentage of property, industry, and government than do the “superrich” in the United States, and that they are much less altruistic than Americans.

    You can’t legislate morals. When taxation becomes confiscatory, the wealthy find means to avoid paying taxes. If one wanted to encourage the rise of more Carnegies and fewer Scrooges’, they should begin by teaching individualism and achievement, and glorify the altruistic, irrespective of source, in the primary schools. Then they should stop teaching collectivism and groupthink, and stop extolling central authority and dependence.

    • Perhaps, but then I come back to the “fishing hole analogy” – at what point do the rich “fish out” the pond (by catching all the government-fish, which they are doing and most have done) such that the one man, one vote concept of the Founders (the catch limit) comes back into play?
      No, I think if someone builds $500-million of net worth (shares and options, and scams at the 20% LT gains rate instead of the 37% reg income rate) that’s too much. 37% would pay in part for restocking the pond.

      • …Now this is a different question (and a different pond.) Here, you’re metaphorizing (is that a word? If not, it should be) about a pond which contains exactly 536 fish, and to which only 20 new fish are added every two years. THIS pond should be off-limits to everyone. I have no solution to the problem posed by wealthy fishermen, bribing the guards to let them fish here, other than to burn down the K-Street fishmarket and forever deny the variance which allowed it to exist in the first place.

      • OK. The traditional way of handling this was to divvy up the contents of the fisherman’s freezer after he croaks. The easy path is to let the narcissistic psychopath keep poaching, and settle up after he isn’t around to cause trouble. In the end, everybody gets a fish fry, and the no-good poacher gets a wall plaque at a library.

    • “it assumes “wealth” is a zero-sum game. Physical dollars, or bullion may be zero-sum, but actual “wealth” is limitless. I can think of no moral reason why, if you earn a dollar and I earn a quarter, I should be entitled to take from you, a part of your dollar,”

      Thats the funny part Ray.. is I think wealth is a zero sum game… LOL…
      the difference between now and the seventies.. in the seventies.. if the boss did well.. everyone when they got their christmas turkey.. would get a bonus check.. we did good.. everyone was always anticipating those bonuses..
      Today that has stopped.. there isn’t any longer a thanksgiving turkey or ham.. no longer the christmas bonus and turkey.. these are things that are long gone..

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/on-leadership/wp/2015/08/26/fewer-companies-are-giving-out-bonuses-to-lower-paid-employees/

      I worked for one company.. that when I worked there.. all the perks.. it was a grocery store.. and the perks that were offered to the store managers were set aside and at the christmas party.. everything came up.. they gave you a free hot meal.. dance drinks.. both an alcohol and a soda bar.. one for the adults and one for the kids.. a bonus and then the drawing..the cars trips televisions.. I got a team coat for the cowboys.. I still have that coat.. at the time the coat was three hundred.. nice one to..the one I wanted to be picked for was either the powered hang glider or the totino’s surrey.. both cool and as a young man had my mind wandering..
      anyway I digressed.. today.. the managers take those things.. they still have a meal but there are no bonuses.. the bonuses go to the managers..
      another company that you had to wait for someone to die to get a job there.. was a little company in a nearby city he was the man..daycare,buses sick daycare.. if he did well you did well.. today.. that is long gone.. corporate greed set in.. the only ones that benefit are the managers.. most of the companies.. they use to offer a great set of benefits..those benefits are no more.. my fathers companies ceo and owner.. he took total care of all his employees.. my mother never paid more than two hundred a year for medical expenses.. he knew all of the families kids.. he was a man to be admired and when he passed on.. he was one wealthy man. the company still pays decent and is hard to get a job at.. but the old man is gone..so are the bulk of the benefits that use to be.. the hospital.. the best you got if you were a floor worker was a small pad of paper a cold meal.. ( only if you weren’t working) they have no mercy if your sick you go to work..but the executives.. they have company condo’s cruises trips to exotic places if they do well.. my daughter was wanting to work for them.. and she said oh you should see what they give their employees.. I said honey.. that is only for the executives.. for the regular floor worker..I never was able to use any of the vacation hours I built up..the last five or six years I would donate eighty hours a year to someone that was sick..( you were always let go if you got sick always.. that is why we have a new friend living in our back bedroom.. his wife got sick.. with cancer they dropped her from the insurance. then took everything he had.. when he came to stay with us all he had was the clothes on his back..everything was gone)

      I don’t begrudge anyone for wanting more.. heck I want more.. but the only power money or gold has is its velocity.. so you make twenty percent instead of 37.. if that keeps the velocity up then it is a wise investment and the ones that have it will continue to make more.. if it stops they end up loosing that velocity and it ends making the dollar worthless.. if getting a twenty million dollar bonus rather than a fifty million dollar bonus maybe twenty split it out.. a dollar bill is only good as long as it is seen as valuable.. the minute it stops moving its value stops..
      in our home my father inlaw.( they stay here to) was upset at the lack of fresh fruit.. I had to say it.. I know dad.. and we are both dam good looking.. but they still wouldn’t let me have them.. so I can’t buy them with my good looks.. LOL LOL and neither can you so we will just have to do without right now..
      the thing is the health insurance went up another two hundred a month.. phew.. it was already over fifty percent of our gross income.. the only thing that has helped is gas hasn’t risen in costs.. to keep that dollar you have to keep it moving.. we are not buying right now.. decided that family thanksgiving dinner is not workable this year.. ( the first time in forty five years) that usually runs between three and six hundred dollars.. but a winter coat for the new friend was definately more important than a turkey dinner this year…
      we will survive..

      • Brother Ray may need to reread Henry George on economics.

        All wealth of nations springs from its lands and seas. As line or two from the Wikipedia entry:
        He inspired the economic philosophy known as Georgism, based on the belief that people should own the value they produce themselves, but that the economic value derived from land (including natural resources) should belong equally to all members of society. He argued that a single tax on land would itself reform society and economy.
        His most famous work, Progress and Poverty (1879), sold millions of copies worldwide, probably more than any other American book before that time. The treatise investigates the paradox of increasing inequality and poverty amid economic and technological progress, the cyclic nature of industrialized economies, and the use of rent capture such as land value tax and other anti-monopoly reforms as a remedy for these and other social problems.
        The mid-20th century labor economist and journalist George Soule wrote that George was “By far the most famous American economic writer,” and “author of a book which probably had a larger world-wide circulation than any other work on economics ever written.”[14]

      • Bear in-mind George lived at a time when coin was made of precious metal, and paper money was an exchange, not a fiat currency…

        With the advent of computers, and of software-driven lives and lifestyles, I’m not sure George’s writings are still applicable. Contemporary society places an inconceivably huge worth (and huge pricetag) on lines of code, which are transitive and will vanish into nothingness at the whim of a single flash-bang from the Sun, and therefore, have no actual value. However, until the Sun hits our [reset] button, or we do it to ourselves, anyone — for that matter, everyone — can write a few lines of code, upload them to Apple or Google, and retire comfortably wealthy. Therefore, neither the pond stock nor the amount of shore-line are in-question, but merely the skill of the fisherman and the fishing gear they use…

      • I think you’ve missed a bit part of the swindle, Ray. I will hold to my fishing hole analogy because, in part, that your “line of code” idea is depreciating at every turn. It’s gone the same route as Moore’s Law on the hardware side.
        When there were 10 people in the world who could write 8080 assembler, “first lines” had value. But now, there are so many code libraries that the cost per line is dropping all the time. Machine-made code is a reality, as well.
        This doesn’t deny the reality of tulips of C# (don’t forget, I was essentially #3 ir ##4 in the foodchain of a MSFT Gold Partner. It’s just that what we think of as “programming” is, at a certain level, nothing more than “workflowing ideas” into templates. E.G. Pop up a window. Populate it with these input forms. Connect forms to SQL as follows… Sure. Tremendously useful for a while.
        But, in the larger scheme of things, when even the Russians are warning of the dangerous of AI (which can write better, tighter code than a phone ape).

        Eseentially, humans have not found anything better than the computer as a replacement for (stop me when I get old here) Foraging –> Growing —> Storing —> Trading —? hard assets —> titles to real property —> Convertible paper —> Fiat money —> digital money —> (and on it goes through history).

        What we really need is a way out of our almost entirely economic orientation (having) and a reorientation toward “being” and that’s the attraction of shariah to many since they do get rid of the interest game, which in turn make for (somewhat more) honest “money”. If you didn’t have to conform so much, it wouldn’t be a bad angle. But the baggage that comes with it is intolerable and is theocratic (a government replacement) and there goes the democratic republic idea…

        Even with the latest and greatest software here, I still can’t type (or speak) any faster and the same lines of code (and conventions) under all word processors are already pretty much depreciated.

        And even writing for the latest, greatest version of Android Pie will be depreciable, as well. near nothing in 7-years and about zero in 15. Take GW Basic or Visual Basic. They still work, but sure not in high demand. Thank God for Cobol being a legacy accounting language or many of my friends would not have had assets to sell. Ditto FORTRAN.

        The days of writing the “killer app” are going, too. What matters most (financial speaking) is “first-ness.” If you get “Firstness” you get to own a market – and that’s the value point. Not in continuously obsoleted code bases. Want some Commodore Sprites for C64 games I wrote once?

        Even “firstness” is no guarantee (I was doing computer data over radio in 1983). You also need as the second part of this “financial epoxy “Nicheness” If you have firstness and nichness, then you can buy a small country.

        Lines of code of “fill-in app development tool sets?” Not so much.

      • “Thats the funny part Ray.. is I think wealth is a zero sum game”

        Bill Gates borrowed some money from his dad and bought an operating system for a few quid under $200,000 bucks. He then flipped it to IBM for a couple mil (a nice, tidy profit) but he retained the rights to the OS. When Compaq engineers successfully reverse-engineered IBM’s PC, the personal computing industry was born, and Gates, who owned the rights to the OS, became an overnight billionaire.

        If wealth is a zero-sum game, from whom did Bill Gates take that billion dollars…?

      • His OS was his cash cow which he then levered into winword and excel and…. But he was not an overnight billionaire. Now, should we have a discussion about what roll govt has in computing?

      • “But he was not an overnight billionaire”

        I was being figurative, to combat LOOB’s contention that wealth really is a zero-sum game. In actuality, it took Gates about 4 years to hit that 10th digit, but by the time M$ stopped writing Winword for DOS, he was top-5, and Microsoft had created 3800 millionaire programmers whose names were not Gates or Allen…

        I firmly believe that that pond is bottomless. Every time someone comes up with a new lure, they pull more fish out of it, irrespective of the fish the billionaire’s club has already caught. The trick is to come up with that damn’ lure.

        Now the other pond, the one with the 536 fish — THAT is a really serious problem…

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