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Old 2012-01-20, 04:37   Link #2061
Vexx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by solomon View Post
On a slightly off topic note I have a question; My friend and I were talking about economic spending and how it should be more on edumacation and eventually we got to student loans.

He said and I quote; "There's absolutely no way that you're getting out of your loans, Don't even dream about it. If they just said, "No student loans forever! You're free!", the economy would collapse. But there are dumb people who wish for that shit"

I wanted to know which of us is smoking too much hemp, cause I'm in the hole for around 24K but provided I get a good job in the future I'm not worried.
He isn't entirely wrong... the numbers I find is that total student debt is nearly $1 trillion dollars in the US. Would forgiving those cause a collapse? No, but it would shudder a bit. The US economy generates over $15 trillion a year. The government would pay off the banks part of it and add it to the national debt. Why is there so much debt? ---> for-profit education, an industry that sprang out of nothing thanks to Bush administration promotion of privatized education.

As for you, $24K is pretty good as a result ... ASSUMING you can find work to pay it off. If it is a low-interest loan, then stretching the payback as far as you can is good because most of your other loans you acquire will probably be more expensive (pay them off quicker). I think my son is going to end up with about $20K in loans for his undergrad experience. Considering I had $10K in loans back in 1981 when I graduated.... those are pretty decently small amounts.

People with $100K in loans and a history/polysci degree? (sigh) well, they'd better have "the family estate" waiting for them or they're probably screwed in this job market.
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Old 2012-01-20, 05:29   Link #2062
DonQuigleone
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Well, Ireland, until recently, had heavily subsidized education, and it's still damn cheap compared to america. A lot of students still complain about it.

Frankly, I don't think having to get a loan isn't neccessarily a bad thing. I think the way the UK does it isn't too bad actually. You only have to repay it after graduation if you're earning over a set salary, after a certain number of years your student debt gets wiped. The other students around me regard it as satanic, but frankly, universal free tertiary education I think has some negative effects. I think because of the fact it's free, most people are kind of apathetic about it, and don't give a damn.

At our top universities and courses, truancy is a big problem (let alone the less prestigious courses). And a lot of students at my own university (UCD, second best in Ireland, narrowly behind TCD) refer to that incredibly rare thing, the "platinum week" where you attend all your classes in a single week. Pitiful. Maybe if you had to pay for it yourself you'd take your education more seriously.

My own opinion is that rather then free tertiary education, the government should work towards providing graduating second and third level students a wide variety of high quality jobs to be available. Not only that, but the Free tuition thing still strongly benefitted the wealthier among us, the vast majority of students came from wealthy and middleclass backgrounds, not poor ones. So all those tuition subsidies are basically flowing to rich kids. People who attend university end out getting a premium courtesy of the state, while those who do not come out with less benefit. Theorettically there's universal access to university, but poorer students are less likely to try to go to University, or to get the necessary grades to go to University, due to their schools being substandard.
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Old 2012-01-21, 01:28   Link #2063
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Old 2012-01-21, 04:15   Link #2064
ganbaru
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Hours before key primary, Romney lowers expectations
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...80I2AT20120120
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Old 2012-01-21, 09:04   Link #2065
Ledgem
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Quote:
Originally Posted by solomon View Post
What is the deal with the debate audience? And the tax return things? Mitt Romney is RICH! are they gonna penalize him for this? I mean unless he is doing something ILLEGAL that the public needs to know about his tax returns...........any way do we REALLY need to know his tax returns......I mean ALL THESE PEOPLE ARE WELL HEELED....some more than others......I just don't get it.
Wow, you fell right for Romney's deflection of that issue. Romney wants people to believe that the critics are upset at his wealth, but nobody cares about that. What people care about is whether he was playing by the same rules that everyone else. If you or I make any money, we're taxed on it. Yet many wealthy people (and corporations) evade taxes on their money by stashing it in certain places where the government can't see it or lay claim to it. These so-called "tax havens" allow people to keep their wealth, tax-free (or taxed at a lower rate than in the USA, and the taxes go to the country that the money is held in). Forget the discussions about tax rates and who should be paying how much: people who do that aren't paying anything back to the society that allowed them to make that wealth. It's not even about paying one's fair share; they're not paying any share.

Why does this matter with Romney? Because people suspect that he was stashing a lot of his wealth in a well-known tax haven. It'd be pretty two-faced of him to be talking about taxes if he has been evading them. It'd also be a bit screwed up if someone running for the highest government position wasn't paying back to society - despite having ample financial resources to comfortably do so.

Quote:
Originally Posted by solomon View Post
On a slightly off topic note I have a question; My friend and I were talking about economic spending and how it should be more on edumacation and eventually we got to student loans.

He said and I quote; "There's absolutely no way that you're getting out of your loans, Don't even dream about it. If they just said, "No student loans forever! You're free!", the economy would collapse. But there are dumb people who wish for that shit"
The banks and other groups that issued the loans would have problems, but the economy would not collapse. Think about it: you have 24K to pay off, and unless you can pay it off really quickly, you'll probably end up paying at least 1.5x that over the course of a few years. That's money that could have been going to other sectors of the economy.

Granted, it's true that the reason why loans are a big issue is partly because people don't understand how they work. Pay them off as fast as possible and cut away the interest, and you'll be fine. Most people are sitting around just paying off their interest and barely make a dent in their principal. Those people are modern-day slaves, in a way.
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Last edited by Ledgem; 2012-01-21 at 16:46. Reason: Spelling, clarity
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Old 2012-01-21, 14:21   Link #2066
Vexx
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Right, it isn't that Romney makes so much (mostly through "unearned income") but that he pays so little tax on it and stashes it offshore.

In related news - CEOs take even higher bonuses and perks despite their own companies tanking and the other employees getting screwed. Even the compensation analysts are not pretending this makes sense from a business perspective -- its just pillaging.
http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2012/01/...er=rss&emc=rss

$5million a year.... hmmm, *assuming* you actually *worked* for 40hrs/wk ..... that's about 40 dollars a minute. That means they pay him $200 to take a crap and four dollars for every breath. I always love watching the rationale for what kind of "value" a CEO "brings" to a company for that money. Of course, the ones profiled in the article make far more...

Last edited by Vexx; 2012-01-21 at 14:36.
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Old 2012-01-21, 22:43   Link #2067
Ledgem
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Looks like Gingrich won South Carolina. That's kind of surprising. I'll admit that he put up a good debate performance on Thursday. However, even though I'm not a "family values" person, I thought him sleazy enough to have left two wives for his then-mistress in their times of sickness; the recent allegation that he wanted to have an open marriage just seemed even worse. Aren't evangelical Christians supposed to be big on stuff like marriage and personal values? Isn't that why they're always so hard up against gay marriage? Why are they supporting Gingrich?

As an aside, I noticed something from watching a few of these debates. All of the candidates except for one (Ron Paul) make multiple references to how they'll beat Obama and so on. I understand that politics have become like sports, in a way, in that the policies are almost less important than just having one political group beat the other, but doesn't it seem strange? I don't know - maybe it wouldn't be as strange to me if it weren't for the fact that Romney, Gingrich, and Santorum seem to feel the need to rail against Obama every few answers, yet Paul only ever talks about what should be done. It just seems like Paul is the more serious candidate, and what a politician should be like.
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Old 2012-01-21, 22:55   Link #2068
ganbaru
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House Republicans look to each other for rebirth
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...80K0VX20120121
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Old 2012-01-21, 23:51   Link #2069
Vexx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Looks like Gingrich won South Carolina. That's kind of surprising. I'll admit that he put up a good debate performance on Thursday. However, even though I'm not a "family values" person, I thought him sleazy enough to have left two wives for his then-mistress in their times of sickness; the recent allegation that he wanted to have an open marriage just seemed even worse. Aren't evangelical Christians supposed to be big on stuff like marriage and personal values? Isn't that why they're always so hard up against gay marriage? Why are they supporting Gingrich?
Because evangelical southerners would rather have an adulterer with zero morals than a Mormon, even if he's Catholic by marriage ... sadly, it doesn't get more deep than that though they seem to know enough that saying it out loud would attract jeers. Never mind the "pot kettle black" problem
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Old 2012-01-22, 00:07   Link #2070
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
Because evangelical southerners would rather have an adulterer with zero morals than a Mormon, even if he's Catholic by marriage ... sadly, it doesn't get more deep than that though they seem to know enough that saying it out loud would attract jeers. Never mind the "pot kettle black" problem
The racist dog whistles and such might help the slimy Newt in the Rep. primary, but I don't know how he thinks it's going to help him in the general election.
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Old 2012-01-22, 00:37   Link #2071
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
Aren't evangelical Christians supposed to be big on stuff like marriage and personal values.....

and redemption
this is also a big deal among evangelicals



On Thanksgiving weekend, nearly 3,000 evangelicals gathered in Iowa to hear six candidates discuss their values. Romney was not there. Gingrich described his life as "remarkably successful," with a strong marriage to his current wife.

"But all of that has required a great deal of pain, some of which I have caused others, which I regret deeply," Gingrich said, "all of those required having to go to God to seek both reconciliation, but also to seek God's acceptance, that I had to recognize how limited I was."

Bob Vander Plaats, president of The Family Leader, which put on the conference, says people seem willing to believe Gingrich has changed. After all, sin and redemption are key to the evangelical story.

"The centerpiece of our faith is forgiveness," he says.

Vander Plaats says evangelicals also like Gingrich because they want a conservative they can trust.

"There's a certain anxiety and, dare I say, fearfulness about the world we live in today," he says, and "they're probably willing to forgive and move on from the baggage of the past, the misgivings of the past, if they really believe he's the best one prepared to lead to a safer, more vibrant America."


.....

http://www.npr.org/2011/12/08/143361...e-wed-gingrich

Last edited by flying ^; 2012-01-22 at 00:48.
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Old 2012-01-22, 01:18   Link #2072
Ledgem
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Ah yes, redemption and forgiveness... well, CNN had a quote from an evangelical that I liked regarding that. The person basically said that there was a difference between forgiving someone, and trusting them. They went on to say that they could forgive Gingrich for his past actions, but that didn't mean he was fit to be trusted with the presidency.
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Old 2012-01-24, 05:28   Link #2073
Mentar
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Well, all it takes is some more redemption for what he did after his last redemptions

You know, I'm actually an actively believing catholic (German style, VERY different from the US). But it never ceases to amaze me how callously aggressive and unapologetic these unsavory "born-again" heroes carry their former transgressions as if they were personal achievements.
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Old 2012-01-24, 07:33   Link #2074
ganbaru
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Romney reports tax bill of $6.2 million for 2010-11
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...80N06U20120124
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Old 2012-01-24, 14:07   Link #2075
Vexx
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And in the same camp we have the sort of thing that evokes comments like this (lifted from another site):

Quote:
At a forum, a woman critical of Obama told Santorum, “I never refer to Obama as President Obama because legally he is not. He constantly says that our constitution is passÚ, and he ignores it as you know and does what he darn well pleases. He is an avowed Muslim and my question is, why isn’t something being done to get him out of government? He has no legal right to be calling himself president.”

This, in a nutshell, is the problem with a big faction of America's hard right. They are ignorant and stupid. They deny facts, deny science, are probably racist, and most likely believe in creationism. And most disturbingly, they are large in number and dominate a major political party. How can a nation thrive when a large percentage of its citizens are complete idiots?
Note the complete absence of any connection to facts in her spew of myth. This isn't an aberration but the opinion of a large part of those under the "GOP tent"... and it has the plutocrats, old-guard, and fiscal conservatives of the GOP in disarray because they can no longer control the monsters they invited in.

Unfortunately, my answer to him was along the lines of "You get a version of Idiocracy but one with a nasty medieval inquisitional twist of racial purity, cult interpretations of beliefs, and thuggish nationalism"

Back in the 1950s, science fiction writer named Heinlein postulated a future history through a series of stories which included such things as the "crazy years of dynamic social change" of the 70s-90s and then in the 21st Century America fell under a hardline religious theocracy that basically isolated it from the world for almost a century til it collapsed. Its always interesting to watch how closely he seems to have nicked the path...

Last edited by Vexx; 2012-01-24 at 14:21.
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Old 2012-01-24, 14:43   Link #2076
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Most of that is that something gets said and spread. Sometimes in the media. It never gets unsaid. I don't know how many times I have to correct my father on things related to Obama or other people. The corrections are not believed in general because after two or three years of the same things being said or just repeated outside of any official word, it becomes reality. And breaking reality with something that may or may not be true doesn't cut it, nor does it change ones mind.

My father's views are about like the woman's in that article. I've countered most points and he still doesn't let go. Of course, my point of view would be that you can still disagree with Obama, even hate him, based entirely on his policies and actually politics, without needing to resort to anything else. But the idea of the President being either illegal or an enemy (or both) sticks with people, and they want him out.

Obama is viewed as someone who should not be able to be President (a non-native born citizen) via his father, a British citizen, and/or rumors of Obama's birth in Kenya (disproven, but that won't stop anyone because of the hoops and time it took to get that Birth Certificate out to the public and the nature of the dispute over even that being legit. That comes down to different States laws on the matter. In states with different laws, you can get your forms easily, in others you can't. but to someone who can go to his State records and get his oen Birth Certificate, Obama's short forma and other things are suspect...because of Hawaii State Law). Add to this him growing up in Indonesia and what people tell other people about the laws there in relation to citizenship and religion for schooling and the like. This in turn has people believe that Obama can't be an American Citizen and that he has to be a Muslim. While the Muslim part does not prevent him from being President, it does cause other issues socially with the Christian majority.

Therefore, since we've been fighting Muslims since before the end of the Cold War, the relationship almost immediately get put down as "Enemy of the State". And if one is labeled as such, you don't put him in charge. Add that to the notion that he should not be able to be President to state with via the Constitution's stance on "native born citizen" and the disagreement that he is or is not one....people want him out.

And that is before anyone gets to racism.

There is also the issue (which I've never tried to confirm) of Obama sealing his records. Everything from the Birth Certificate, to High School and the like, Classified. Add to this that usually when someone is President, someone knows him from High School. Someone has tales of either great things or stupid stuff they did as teenagers. No one seems to remember Obama, dispite the claims of high achievements. At least that is what keeps getting reported. The earliers things I can find is a speech he gave when getting his Law degree.

However I've counted by father's views of conspiracy and the like with this ponderance. If all he suspects was true, it would seem like someone outside the country was trying to set this Obama up from birth to be President, and/or falsified so many records to get him into a position of power as to be someone that never existed before the late 1980s. And that seems too far fetched to me...and he agreed with that. It would be far fetched.
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Old 2012-01-24, 16:06   Link #2077
Vexx
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Bleh... yes, about a quarter of my relatives are either voicing your father's viewpoint or worse (with the racist bits poorly disguised... e.g. calling it the "Black House" :P ). Its really split my relatives in that its almost impossible to have a family gathering any more without big arguments breaking out. Even dispassionate fact-checks are received with venom and scary eyes.... :P I'm just glad I live a few thousand miles away from them.
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Old 2012-01-24, 16:19   Link #2078
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All Obama has to do: Talk about this very issue at the State of the Union tonight.

Quote:
In his State of the Union address tonight, President Obama will appeal to those Americans who think investment income should be taxed more by laying out a more detailed plan for what he's called the "Buffett rule."
http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_1...ows/?tag=stack

Quote:
Thirty-six percent approve of the current policy of taxing capital gains at a lower rate because it encourages investment and helps the economy.
Well, we've come to a point where -- all this "investment" isn't doing very much to help the economy anyways.
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Old 2012-01-24, 16:55   Link #2079
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kyuu View Post
All Obama has to do: Talk about this very issue at the State of the Union tonight.



http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_1...ows/?tag=stack



Well, we've come to a point where -- all this "investment" isn't doing very much to help the economy anyways.
my view on the investment tax isn't as clear cut. For normal investment it should be a higher rate but it should be progressive not flat. For retirement the rate should be less then the 15%. There has to be more incentives to save for retirement.
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Old 2012-01-24, 18:02   Link #2080
ganbaru
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xellos-_^ View Post
my view on the investment tax isn't as clear cut. For normal investment it should be a higher rate but it should be progressive not flat. For retirement the rate should be less then the 15%. There has to be more incentives to save for retirement.
We got here something for that called RRSP (Registered Retirement Saving Program I think) than allow to place money for retirement and reduce taxable income.
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