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Old 12-26-2014, 09:18 PM
 
Location: Shadowville
680 posts, read 817,758 times
Reputation: 190

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jero23 View Post

Let's stay on topic about Cobb and Gwinnett counties lack of participation with MARTA.
Much appreciated... for out-of-towners trying to get a clear grasp of that topic, staying with it helps, over-complication is already /in/ the topic!
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Old 12-28-2014, 08:27 AM
 
Location: Marietta, GA
7,846 posts, read 14,853,765 times
Reputation: 3504
Quote:
Originally Posted by toll_booth View Post
Quality of life statistics are subjective? Can you please clarify as to why?
I never mentioned "quality of life statistics" as I don't even know what those would be, but how can you not agree that "quality of life" is highly subjective? Do you believe that a 50 year old rancher in Montana has the same idea of what a good quality of life would be as a 25 year old living in a studio apartment in NYC?

Right here on this board we see endless differences of opinion about quality of life. There are those who loathe anything mentioned about places like Cobb County and the suburbs. Their idea of good quality of life is living in a "dense" urban area, and they yearn for a transit utopia where they can ride trains and streetcars and never have to ride in an automobile. They want "small homes" and condos. They don't care about the quality of schools because they generally don't have children or plan to put them in private schools. They feel that paying taxes is good and like to see them increase to pay for all the great things they believe ought to be done in an urban area.

We have folks like myself who lived the urban life and much prefer the suburbs. To me, the quality of life in a city is poor, for many reasons. I like a bigger home with a backyard and room. I prefer lower taxes and less government. I like driving my car.

There are farmers, small town folks, and many others who have various ideas of what quality of life is to them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by toll_booth View Post
Question for you. Why isn't Mississippi an economic powerhouse?
I'm not an expert on Mississippi, but I would take some guesses that it stems from several factors. The historical agricultural and rural society is one. The high proportion of uneducated and poor people may be another. The poor education system is another. The high level of people on welfare is probably a huge contributor. The lack of a desire of people to relocate to Mississippi due to the historical connotations the state has earned is probably yet another. The simple way to put it is...there's not much in Mississippi to attract business and never has been.

Even if none of those facts explains why Mississippi isn't Texas, so what? Again, just because you can point to one or a couple of examples that defy the general trend, that doesn't make the trend invalid. Basic principles of economics explain and show why high taxes are a drag on economic growth and employment. To deny that basic premise is just...well....denial.

Last edited by neil0311; 12-28-2014 at 08:42 AM..
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Old 12-28-2014, 02:07 PM
 
Location: Georgia
5,208 posts, read 4,265,201 times
Reputation: 3011
Quote:
Originally Posted by neil0311 View Post
I never mentioned "quality of life statistics" as I don't even know what those would be, but how can you not agree that "quality of life" is highly subjective? Do you believe that a 50 year old rancher in Montana has the same idea of what a good quality of life would be as a 25 year old living in a studio apartment in NYC?

Right here on this board we see endless differences of opinion about quality of life. There are those who loathe anything mentioned about places like Cobb County and the suburbs. Their idea of good quality of life is living in a "dense" urban area, and they yearn for a transit utopia where they can ride trains and streetcars and never have to ride in an automobile. They want "small homes" and condos. They don't care about the quality of schools because they generally don't have children or plan to put them in private schools. They feel that paying taxes is good and like to see them increase to pay for all the great things they believe ought to be done in an urban area.

We have folks like myself who lived the urban life and much prefer the suburbs. To me, the quality of life in a city is poor, for many reasons. I like a bigger home with a backyard and room. I prefer lower taxes and less government. I like driving my car.

There are farmers, small town folks, and many others who have various ideas of what quality of life is to them.
Life expectancy indicators are based on facts.
Estimated STI rates are based on facts.
Median incomes are based on facts.
Most if not all of the other quality-of-life indicators are based on facts.

None of them are up for debate except for the methods of data collection and interpretation.

Quote:
I'm not an expert on Mississippi, but I would take some guesses that it stems from several factors. The historical agricultural and rural society is one. The high proportion of uneducated and poor people may be another. The poor education system is another. The high level of people on welfare is probably a huge contributor. The lack of a desire of people to relocate to Mississippi due to the historical connotations the state has earned is probably yet another. The simple way to put it is...there's not much in Mississippi to attract business and never has been.

Even if none of those facts explains why Mississippi isn't Texas, so what? Again, just because you can point to one or a couple of examples that defy the general trend, that doesn't make the trend invalid. Basic principles of economics explain and show why high taxes are a drag on economic growth and employment. To deny that basic premise is just...well....denial.
You need to look back at the first paragraph before saying what you said in the second. If we listened to conservative and libertarian talking points, tax rates and the extent of bureaucracy are pretty much all that are needed to estimate the quality of life. But in the real world, that is an absurdly simplistic point of view. As you yourself admitted, there are many factors that come into play.
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Old 12-28-2014, 07:21 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
6,560 posts, read 7,639,930 times
Reputation: 4361
Quote:
Originally Posted by toll_booth View Post
Life expectancy indicators are based on facts.
Estimated STI rates are based on facts.
Median incomes are based on facts.
Most if not all of the other quality-of-life indicators are based on facts.

None of them are up for debate except for the methods of data collection and interpretation.



You need to look back at the first paragraph before saying what you said in the second. If we listened to conservative and libertarian talking points, tax rates and the extent of bureaucracy are pretty much all that are needed to estimate the quality of life. But in the real world, that is an absurdly simplistic point of view. As you yourself admitted, there are many factors that come into play.
careful.

Median incomes statistics are based on facts, however they are a fact of just a median income.

What he is trying to refer to is there is an inherent subjectivity to what someone refers to as a quality of life. There is no direct measurement of such a thing.

Instead we use -proxies- to try to capture it.

Personally, I prefer to examine statistics that compare both cost of living and median incomes in one. It is a clearer indicator that an individual has more expendable income to live their lives how they want...however they choose. However, that itself is a proxy measurement.


Neil,

The problem with this hybrid conservative-libertarian doom and gloom viewpoint is they are talking points designed to scare people into a political choice... ironically into decreasing taxes, often in a regressive way, which merely makes the situation worse.

The United States isn't as bad off as many would have you believe. The ultimate variables people do not account for is our financial ability (not political will) to tax more. That is why the nation's credit is always so strong. We are a very wealthy nation that actually has lower taxes than most first world countries, particularly for those who have massed insanely large amounts of private capital that is taxed at far lower values than a middle class family's income.

But yes I am still concerned that Baby Boomers, holding a larger amount of political power in the last few decades has created more favorable policies for their age group over time. They cut taxes for senior citizens in many states...just as they are retiring as one large example.

I'm also a bit concerned that it is discretionary spending that has been cut back so much over the years. That is what has been easy to reduce in the past, even though it is the smaller portions of the budget. The generation before the baby boomers had that down. They spent a good bit that really put together the initial investment to make this country's economy take off. They started the interstate. They put alot of investments into science that wouldn't have likely occurred in the private sector with the risk involved earlier on (ie. computer breakthroughs...semi-conductors, etc...). The private sector really kicks in when they can make money off an innovation within a 20 year patent period, given the risks and initial capital involved. The key thing is these expenses that take decades to make and the benefits last for decades more, but not on every little thing that the private sector can handle in consumer goods. My key concern isn't for now or even for generation y, but in making sure we do our small part each decade to make the investment that takes 50 years to accomplish to keep us strong and on top in the long-run.


I also think when we make sweeping regional comparisons we need to be careful. I know why I choose to keep living down here and I think I know why you chose to come here. It is logical. However, we shouldn't forget that some of the reasons the Northeast is expensive is from how expensive it is to live in older cities with limited land and many more people. We have the ability to take advantage of a cheap resource that (at this point in time) is more plentiful than in New England... land availability region-wide.

New England is limited in how much it can grow...cheaply at least.. compared to us. However, they still have more, good human capital, and so on. We will continue to steal companies and people due to cheaper costs, however they aren't shrinking and their economy is strong. They are still keeping high value businesses. Their expenses aren't for nothing. That region is very wealthy. We will grow faster, but they are still keeping their overall business and wealth.


It is also for these reasons I want to see our region make certain expenses. We can't be as expensive as the northeast, as we don't have as much as they do, but we still have to prepare for the day we start to be more of an expensive place to build next to our regional counterparts. I actually think this day is already here, but we are only at the beginning. It is often easier to move to places like Nashville, Austin, and Charlotte. They are still small enough. We have to start paying for some of the extras that make us as a region more attractive to our lower cost counterparts moving forward. As we grow from 6 million to 8 million + the idea that some people live in more urban areas starts to become attractive to me... as I don't have to see those people on my road commuting to work. The more people that take that lifestyle moving forward, the bigger my backyard can stay.

I also like the idea of seeding money into an extensive commuter rail network for Atlanta in 50 years. We are getting to that point where we can't all live on large lots and commute into town. However to keep us as an attractive region, I see value to having a central work area that all Atlantans can commute to (and the highest value companies want to be), yet we can chose to have a larger yard. As the region grows large enough, we have to pay for a way to make those lifestyle choices possible. We also don't need to become too much of a fragmented region. We need to export jobs to where people live as much as possible to fix our region's traffic woes, but not at the cost of having a place we are all able to commute to to attract the highest value companies.
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Old 12-28-2014, 09:11 PM
 
Location: Georgia
5,208 posts, read 4,265,201 times
Reputation: 3011
Quote:
Originally Posted by cwkimbro View Post
careful.

Median incomes statistics are based on facts, however they are a fact of just a median income.

What he is trying to refer to is there is an inherent subjectivity to what someone refers to as a quality of life. There is no direct measurement of such a thing.

Instead we use -proxies- to try to capture it.

Personally, I prefer to examine statistics that compare both cost of living and median incomes in one. It is a clearer indicator that an individual has more expendable income to live their lives how they want...however they choose. However, that itself is a proxy measurement.
Quality-of-life statistics speak for themselves. Besides, many impoverished people around the globe have exceptionally low taxes and costs of living.
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Old 12-28-2014, 09:25 PM
 
Location: Marietta, GA
7,846 posts, read 14,853,765 times
Reputation: 3504
Quote:
Originally Posted by toll_booth View Post
Life expectancy indicators are based on facts.
Estimated STI rates are based on facts.
Median incomes are based on facts.
Most if not all of the other quality-of-life indicators are based on facts.

None of them are up for debate except for the methods of data collection and interpretation.

You need to look back at the first paragraph before saying what you said in the second. If we listened to conservative and libertarian talking points, tax rates and the extent of bureaucracy are pretty much all that are needed to estimate the quality of life. But in the real world, that is an absurdly simplistic point of view. As you yourself admitted, there are many factors that come into play.

Life expectancy may be based on so many variables. I'm not sure I would equate that with "quality of life" nor would I equate that with any particular state or city. Many times that type of variable is more associated with economic status and education. Sometime other factors come in.

Median Income predicts nothing, since an income in one state/city may equate to a much higher standard of living (or quality of life) than in another. The same median income in Mississippi is going to generally provide a much better standard of living and probably quality of life than that same income in Manhattan. Of course again many factors play into it as well.

Not sure what any of that has to do with MARTA in Cobb County. If people in Cobb and Gwinnett want MARTA, there is a process in place to allow them to vote and opt in to it. It's really very simple, no matter how complicated some want to make it. Of course the fact that neither county has asked to be allowed to vote in a binding way to opt in is dismissed as racist, stupid, blah, blah, blah. That's when it becomes more about politics than transportation. The crowd among us who always knows what's best for the rest of us wants to spend our money as they feel it should be spent. After all, they know what's best for us all. That's when I grab my wallet and run as fast as I can.
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Old 12-28-2014, 09:40 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
6,560 posts, read 7,639,930 times
Reputation: 4361
Quote:
Originally Posted by toll_booth View Post
Quality-of-life statistics speak for themselves. Besides, many impoverished people around the globe have exceptionally low taxes and costs of living.
1) The underlined. Is not a point to be made to me. Be careful of who makes what argument exactly.

However, it is important to note that taxes feeds into cost of living. It is also important to note that I suggested the comparison between income and cost of living need to be analyzed and their relationship. That is why poor people with low taxes/cost of living wouldn't necessarily be doing too well in my book. Please read my prior statement about a person's access to expendable income.

2) For the bolded. You're ignoring the subjectivity of what a quality of life is. The statistics named by all parties are merely proxy variables for a subjective concept. They can't speak for themselves for "quality of life," because your ignoring an individual's choices and desires, which is one of the points Neil was trying to address. Those statistics can speak for themselves for what they directly measure. (ie. median income can directly speak for what the median income is)
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Old 12-29-2014, 08:43 PM
 
Location: Georgia
5,208 posts, read 4,265,201 times
Reputation: 3011
Quote:
Originally Posted by cwkimbro View Post
1) The underlined. Is not a point to be made to me. Be careful of who makes what argument exactly.
Do you deny that it's true?

Quote:
However, it is important to note that taxes feeds into cost of living. It is also important to note that I suggested the comparison between income and cost of living need to be analyzed and their relationship. That is why poor people with low taxes/cost of living wouldn't necessarily be doing too well in my book. Please read my prior statement about a person's access to expendable income.

2) For the bolded. You're ignoring the subjectivity of what a quality of life is. The statistics named by all parties are merely proxy variables for a subjective concept. They can't speak for themselves for "quality of life," because your ignoring an individual's choices and desires, which is one of the points Neil was trying to address. Those statistics can speak for themselves for what they directly measure. (ie. median income can directly speak for what the median income is)
Exactly what is subjective about the median life expectancy? Or STI rates? Or, as you freely admit, median incomes? The only thing up for discussion there is the methodologies of collecting those statistics, and decades of research have fine-tuned their margins of errors to acceptably small levels. Or if you meant that there are more qualities of life yet to be quantified, then yes, statistics cannot tell us everything.
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