Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by vegasjim, Jan 15, 2003.
How many of those women had wood floors ?
Saddam and Osama have to love this!
~nekkid~women supporting them...
(Note that the NY crowd spelled "NO BUSH". Does that mean there were no Italians, Greeks, or Latin women in the protest???)
What a odd way to protest!? I wonder what sort of understanding of male psychology would lead a group of women to believe that en masse public displays of female nudity could somehow deter or punish political and military decision makers (who are mostly men). You can imagine the conversations in the "halls of power". For example, "But sir, if we continue with the attack, even more women are going to start parading around in the nude out on the lawn; soon there will be thousands and thousands of them."
Wow. New Yorkers are a tough bunch...
For all who travel overseas, news item of interest-
DJ US/Citizens Abroad -2: Message To Be Sent Later Fri
NEW YORK (Dow Jones)--The State Department plans to send a message later Friday to all U.S. embassies and consulates saying they should alert all U.S. citizens overseas that they should be prepared to leave on short notice in the event of an emergency, MSNBC reported.
According to MSNBC, officials haven't made a direct link between the warning and the possibility of a war with Iraq. But the warning will tell U.S. citizens that they should have their travel documents and medicines handy in case they have to leave their homes in a hurry, the report said.
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
There is more to the country/culture than its federal govt and its foreign policy, and even those who like those aspects of it more than you do might not consider them its best points.
And where are we?
A moron in the White House, elected solely due to his father's political connections, is about to start a war that is opposed by almost every nation on earth....G R E A T.
One could make a plausible argument that extraordinary compensation for those who really excel is a good thing and even that it is one of the things that makes our country/culture so successful in so many areas. However, your comment about mediocre 2nd basemen points to the (or one of the) problem(s), I think. In a small market especially (like MLB players or CEOs of very large companies) there is a tendancy for a level of compensation originally established to recognize or reward truly outstanding performance to slowly become the norm to which all feel entitled, even if their performance is mediocre or worse.
I think your impressions are mostly right. CEO's in this country are paid a lot more relative to the rank and file. However, I would note that most of the truely "eye-popping" numbers are not paid in cash, but come from stock option gains -- a vehicle that is largely non-existent in many foreign countries. (And these gains do not actually come from the company, but from other shareholders.)
However, my point was that this country rewards the top layers of many professions with extraordinary compensation when compared to a world stage. (And don't even get me started about what mediocre 2nd basemen make). I think its part of our culture and what drives this country to excel. We (collectively) didn't get where we are by being milquetoasts.
But it is more than just overall higher compensation, isn't it?
I do not doubt that that is true, but it was my impression that the difference was far larger than just the average overall scaling for the top management positions in large corporations. To be specific, it is my impression that if we compared a large US company with a Japanese/German/British/whatever company of the same size, the ratio of compensation for their CEOs, say, would be much bigger than that for a mid-level manager with comparable responsibilities, or for their median (or mean) compensated employee or for a low level worker with a similar job, etc. Put yet another, and maybe a simpler, way, isn't the compensation of top management a (much) larger fraction of total payroll expenses for large US corps than for most foreign ones?
Anyway, that is both my impression and also, I thought, conventional wisdom, but I expect you know a lot more about it than I do, PJ.
The US has much higher levels of compensation paid to individuals in many different fields (not just corporate management) -- law, entertainment, sports, investment management, sales.
I think you have summed it up perfectly
I like that! And the combination is truly a horrible system; it's main virtue is that it is better than all the known alternatives (paraphrasing Churchill).
I think you fellas are trying to figure out the American dilemma - democracy (one person, one vote) versus capitalism (one dollar, one vote).
I agree, especially if you/we are talking about a US corporation. In large US corps upper management are paid way way out of line with international norms and amounts that make virtually no sense that I can see. They are unwise and unhealthy and fundamentally but subtlely, I suspect, corrupt. And recently it seems that these insane salaries are not enough for many people in such positions and stealing from the corporation (from its employees and share holders basically) has become almost a norm. I think the penalties should be the most severe we are willing to impose for "property crimes" in the, perhaps unlikely, case that these guys can be caught and convicted.
Compensation for upper management of corps based in other countries is generally quite generous but not even close to the crazy levels one sees in the US. So again, the situation has its complexities.
WW, although I am sure you are correct in your statement, if the average multi-billionaire, chairman of the board type is concerned about growing the market for his goods, he might look at size of his own bank account as part of the problem.
At least we have peace in our little corner of the universe (for now).
Three cheers for critical thinking and complexity
1 - Right you are, my blunder. I frequently mix up that particular bit of terminology for some reason and will probably do so again, but thanks for setting it straight here. So as Dick Feynmann used to say, "If you get the sign wrong, change it."
2 - On this one (at last!) we are in 100% agreement. Although Stecch seems to have me confused with Austin (see his graphic posted near the top of page 2 of this thread), i.e., to think that anyone who isn't persuaded by the links and articles he posts must be an uncritical/unreflective ultra-patriot, he has me badly misidentified. On some topics and at some times I have been extraordinarily critical of the US government and international business interests; both have done some really bad stuff. But as you seem to be expressing in your second point (by my numbering above), the real world does not have the attractive moral simplicity of either Austin's poster or Stecch's sources (e.g., "Free trade indeed. But do not let anyone imagine that the democratic governments they elect will be anything but puppets of the lords of globalisation.") In my opinion, such views actually have a lot in common - they allow satisfying moral self-righteousness, offer a nice simple "story line" for evaluating world events and avoid the effort of getting in there and judging all the messy details on a case by case basis. The only problem is that they so badly distort reality to make it fit the simple good vs evil model they assume. "Good vs evil" makes for entertaining comic books and James Bond movies, not to mention lengthy UG threads, but just as you say, in the real world neither "we" nor "they" are simple enough to describe that way most of the time.
I think you misspoke.
A progressive tax rate is when you collect a higher percentage if income from the the rich than the poor.
In the context of your sentence it would seem you meant to say progressive.
I guess overall my point is that not everything this country does is good and right. Nor is everything it does bad and wrong.
If I were designing elementary school curriculum I would teach more critical thinking and less patriotism. But hey – that’s only me.
OK Wanderer. I see this is pointless. Providing FACTS (none of the IMF stuff is "points of view") isn't as productive as your "i believe the US wants a strong middle class everywhere" statement because i didn't actually dig up the IMF's original papers myself, while your fantasies come from your own head. I gotcha.
Stecchino signing off now .... holding an American flag in one hand and a sparkler in the other and getting misty eyed when fighter jets fly over the stadium during the national anthem. USA!!! USA!!! USA!!!
but before i go ....
Separate names with a comma.