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Old 10-09-2009, 02:40 PM
 
19 posts, read 27,148 times
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I would like to respond to the following post, "[H]ow forward thinking are you if your broke (Or purposely living in a place thats broke)? LOL as usual liberalism not making sense. You take the 'diversity' I'll take the financial security lol. Diversity is uselless for wall intents and purposes. "Diversity" does'nt pay my bills (SIC)."

First, the numerous grammatical errors do not inspire an already diminished confidence in the crumbling intellectual foundation upon which the aforementioned sentiments rest.

Second, unless one has achieved multi-millionaire economic status, either by one's commercial achievements or familial connections, and adheres to moderation in his or her spending habits, no "financial security" is possible in the United States. In fact, as the Nobel Laureate Paul Krugman has conclusively shown, France and Britain enable greater levels of upward social mobility for the poor and lower middle class than does the United States. Therefore, any self-advertisement about achieving "financial security" is either an unseemly bit of braggadocio on the part of an arriviste or one very empty boast, immune to the actual realities of American life.

Third, while various "dudes" of the "bay" consider diversity, and I quote, " uselless for wall intents and purposes"( SIC!!!! What in Darwin's name could this hash of a sentence possibly mean?), in fact the more individuals of differing backgrounds and talents who congregate in any particular geographic region predisposes said region to achieve the critical mass of skill sets and potential consumers required to generate a viable market of goods, services, and products. No diversity, no capitalism. This has been so since the first cities on the Tigris Euphrates, aka the "beginnings of civilization."

The aforementioned conservative sentiment begs the most ironic question: Just how much of a "hero of the market" can one be if he or she wants none of the people in numbers needed to create a free market of heroic proportions?

Finally, as to the notion that "diversity does'nt pay my bills" (SIC) in fact it does. If the United States did not have its large diverse, population, it could not have had the wherewithal to create a large government to finance, regulate, and create the infrastructure for a large market of millions, entailing the sequent interconnected economic activities and relationships, all of which generates the returns from which we draw our salaries, irrespective of where in the United States we live.

Might I suggest, ever so respectfully of course, that those more conservative, Oakland-bashing, urban-hating acolytes reread Orwell (an anti-Communist Left-winger, by the way), particularly his essay on politics and the English language. To think well is to write well, and vise versa.

Last edited by l'étranger; 10-09-2009 at 02:48 PM..
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Old 10-09-2009, 04:03 PM
 
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One finds it amusing, in a sardonic manner of speaking, that those whom the more discerning would most ironically refer to as "free market heroes" accuse others of that which they themselves are guilty, to wit:
Firstly, I hope you don't talk like this in real life LMAO. But lets begin breaking down your nonsensical, clap-trap and fancy wordplay feining intellectuallism. You are a token (left-wing) elitist. My favorite.

Quote:
I have read posts here from a number of such self-described persons, numerous "dudes" who have some connection to California and are wont to champion the free market heroically, as it were, irrespective of the market's unheroic actual means and ends.
As opposed to the heroic-ness of marxist means and ends? No thanks.

Quote:
More recently, I have read on these very pages that "no middle class" exists in Oakland, a fallacy refuted by the actual reported earnings and educational level of numerous neighborhoods in Oakland California (Temescal, upper Dimond, lower Laurel, etc.)that make them indeed "middle class.
You are talking about a few select neighborhoods in certain areas. Meanwhile there are entire cities and towns with median incomes above those "neighborhoods" you mention. You don't have much of a point. Maybe if "montclaire" and "temescal" were their own incorporated entities you might have one. But Oakland as a whole is a very low-income city with a smattering of rich. It does'nt even have a mall lol. Try again.

Quote:
And then there is the spectacle of those of the putatively conservative, even Libertarian (a messianic form of Conservatism for those who enjoy personal pleasures not in accord with current law) perspective who resort to crude, anti-intellectual, and utterly bigoted epithets such as, "commie," when called to account for their–– how else to put it but straightfowardly–– crude, anti-intellectual, and utterly bigoted posts.
There are plenty of commies in Oakland. Thats a fact. What other city would elect the only openly communist congressman in congress? You guessed it. Oakland. And maybe Berkeley. Nothing "bigoted" about stating facts. If you don't like it its not my problem. Take it up with your city.

BTW libertarianism is a not a "form" of conservatism. They are entirely different.

Quote:
Be that as it may, when one champions areas that boast " nice, down to earth, humble people" (SIC), one ought to conduct himself or herself as a "nice, down-to-earth, humble" person, n'est-ce pas? Otherwise, having already failed the intellectual standards consistent with "informed commentary," whatever his or her political leanings, one merely calls attention to his or her double standard, hypocrisy in other words.
Because I call places like Oakland out I get my "down to earth" card revoked lol? Calling stuff like I see does'nt revoke any of my claims or personality traits. Maybe "down to earth" people are tired of elitists like you feining superiority over people like us.
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Old 10-09-2009, 04:16 PM
 
941 posts, read 1,271,861 times
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Quote:
First, the numerous grammatical errors do not inspire an already diminished confidence in the crumbling intellectual foundation upon which the aforementioned sentiments rest.
A second helping of intellectual posturing?

Nice. Taking cheap shots at my typos and comparing it to my intellectual capacity. A sign of desperation and totally irrelevant. You know exactly what I meant when I typed it.

Quote:
Second, unless one has achieved multi-millionaire economic status, either by one's commercial achievements or familial connections, and adheres to moderation in his or her spending habits, no "financial security" is possible in the United States. In fact, as the Nobel Laureate Paul Krugman has conclusively shown, France and Britain enable greater levels of upward social mobility for the poor and lower middle class than does the United States.
Firstly, you don't have to be a "multi-millioanaire" for the averge person to live comfortably in America. Tens of Millions of people do it. Its a matter of "where" you live that makes the difference.

Yes, I like to see how allegedly Paul Krugman "conclusively demonstrates" the upward mobility of France and England over America. Most likely he does'nt but you just say he does.

Quote:
The aforementioned conservative sentiment begs the most ironic question: Just how much of a "hero of the market" can one be if he or she wants none of the people in numbers needed to create a free market of heroic proportions?

Finally, as to the notion that "diversity does'nt pay my bills" (SIC) in fact it does. If the United States did not have its large diverse, population, it could not have had the wherewithal to create a large government to finance, regulate, and create the infrastructure for a large market of millions, entailing the sequent interconnected economic activities and relationships, all of which generates the returns from which we draw our salaries, irrespective of where in the United States we live.
"Diversity" as stated by leftists has ofcourse nothing to do with markets but more to do with multi-culturalism and identity politics. That was the issue I took up with.

You are correct however in that the market does not distinguish between black or white. The market is impartial and acts on accordance to prices not race. However "Diversity" as understood by leftists is inconsequential.

For example. China is a not a very "diverse" country as leftists define it. However it has one of the fastest growing economies in the world (if not the fastest). Its not "diversity" that matters but market size.
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Old 10-09-2009, 05:47 PM
 
19 posts, read 27,148 times
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Two conservatives respond for the price of one? Or is it one conservative responding in the guise of two?

No matter, (t)he(y) doth protest too much. Let us respond by pointing out that our earlier rejoinders drew blood, or our "dudes" at bay, as it were, would not have responded so hysterically, in both senses of the word. As expected, the respondent charges "clap track" on the part of his intellectual tormentor, when in fact the abiding "dude" gives us nothing but hoary cliché (i.e., ad-hominem charges of "elitist leftist") and deadwood "clap track"("heroic-ness of marxist means and ends?, no thanks")

First, we have on display the resentment of the conservative who is neither "fancy" nor given to "wordplay," but quite adjusted to the malapropism, i.e., "feining intellectuallism." All the young dudes, we will sing, you can't make charges about "cheap shots" when you keep misfiring on your grammar. That is both "cheap" and off target.

Second, to claim that I pick Oakland neighborhoods "selectively" is merely after-the-fact whining, and not an argument of any worth. Dudes and heroes of the market, in a manner of speaking, attempted to compare the racially segregated suburbs (which by definition are not cities, affluent or otherwise) in which they supposedly live as economically and educationally superior to Oakland's neighborhoods. But 18Montclair posted the statistics that not only disproved this false notion, but also placed Oakland's numerous, more affluent neighborhoods as on par and actually superior to many of their better-known counterparts in other cities.

Now that one respondent has been called out on this, the dude attempts to change the terms of the argument. We respond thus: You were proven wrong on the first point. Your attempts to change the argument after the fact only underscore the intellectual dishonesty at the core of your attempted riposte. We leave it to others to discern if this reflects on the character of the one to whom I refer. To conclude on this point, persons on this site never argued that there are no other cities that have a higher median income and education level than does Oakland (surely the likes of Paris, Berlin, New York do). So a discerning respondent need not present evidence to back up an argument he or she never made. Thus, a dude who shall remain unnamed attempted the red herring logical fallacy via the strawman. That's no mean feat in matters of dishonesty, but quite mean spirited in dishonest feats.

As my daughters say, "Duh."

Third, one of the heroes of the free market claims that Oakland is, and I quote,"[on the whole] a whole is a very low-income city with a smattering of rich. It does'nt even have a mall." In reality, the median income of Oakland compares with the national average, approximately 50,000 dollars per annum. Yet another correction, Oakland has a number of malls, including Durant Square Mall, Eastmont Town Center,Jack London Square on the bay, and City Center.

"lol" (SIC)


That a champion of the "free market" does not even do his or her basic research is well established. That s/he believes that a mall–––a shopping mall!–––constitutes a prerequisite for a city's standing in the world invites nothing but condescending scorn from truly elitist "leftists" in their presumably Marxist collectives, e.g., The Upper West Side, Rive Gauche, and Notting Hill.

Forth, Nobel Laureate Paul Krugman most certainly has pointed out that Britain and France offer greater upward social mobility for the poor and the lower-middle class, a theme in many of his academic works and articles for the New York Times, for which anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of googling or searching the New York Times Web site can surely find for his or her own perusal.

That any given hero of the free market can claim that, and we quote, "you don't have to be a 'multi-millioanaire' for the averge person to live comfortably in America. Tens of Millions of people do it. Its a matter of 'where' you live that makes the difference"(SIC) is an entirely subjective statement. It does not describe what "comfortable is" and just who determines it. It does not account for salary versus health care, housing, educational costs; lack of job security and outright downward mobility, as it were, given that the middle-class is, by every available academic and governmental statistic, losing economic ground, and has so since the ascension of the American right-wing.

Thus, the earlier attempt at riposte by just one such "hero of the free market" boomerangs mercilessly, albeit inadvertently: "With no ojectively defined definition of what "better" is or means? Then its just your opinion. That's all."

Indeed. "lol" (SIC).

Fifth, that an unnamed conservative reiterates the crude, anti-intellectual, and bigoted epithet, "commie" only confirms that in lieu of an informed, intellectually and ethically valid argument, he or she resorts to crude, anti-intellectual, and bigoted epithets as a matter of choice.

Again, we leave it to the more discerning to decide if this is redolent not only of the dubious character of said conservative's "style" of argumentation (i.e., demagoguery), but also his or her person as well. We are what we do, n'est-ce pas?

Sixth point to consider: The conservative abiding as would the dude claims that China is "not very diverse." This is factually incorrect.

S/he ought to know that China comprises a multitude of ethnic, religious, and even national and linguistic groups, including Han Chinese, Zhuang, Manchu, Hui, Miao, Uyghur, Tujia, Yi, Mongol, Tibetan, Buyi, Dong, Yao, Koreans, etc.; religious groups include Daoist (Taoist), Buddhist, Christian Muslims, not to mention atheists. They in combination drive China's cultural and economic hurly burly.

And this brings us to our final and perhaps most important corrections of those who would presume to represent conservatism and what we can only laughingly refer to as its finer points, to wit:

A)"Diversity" as stated by leftists has ofcourse nothing to do with markets but more to do with multi-culturalism and identity politics."

FALSE: "Diversity" has everything to do with participation, control, driving, and benefiting from the market. "Markets" are neither abstract entities nor racially/class neutral phenomenon, as SLAVERY, that most "peculiar institution" and profitable of market events, ought to register with anyone possessing a brain and an education to develop it would consider.

Moreover, "identity politics" did not come from the left, but rather the conservative right-wing, as it was the wealthy slave owners who instituted the infamous three-fifths clause in the Constitution codifying a RACIAL definition of "American" right from the the beginning, and followed this up by instituting Jim Crow and other manifestations of American Apartheid that enforced WHITE identity politics in every dimension of American power and society, including the conservatives' risible, bitterly risible, accolades for the..."free" market.


Let the historical record show (Eric Foner, Gary Wills, Barbara Fields, John Hope Franklin, et al.) that it was African-Americans striking blows to the supposed "free" market via economic boycotts that finally brought about equality before the law on paper, if not reality, some one hundred years after the United States finally emancipated African-American slaves.

Now, we have presented more than five instances in which those who travel among and adhere to conservative "dude" group-think are not only egregiously incorrect vis-à-vis the actual historical (and economic) record, but also how said fellow travelers in the person of one continues to spew, spout, and spittle positions that range from blatant obfuscations to crude, anti-intellectual, and bigoted utterances with no logical, moral, or ethical foundation to give them even remote consideration as "truth."

I really don't have any need to employ the ad-hominem. We all know about whom I speak.

Maybe, indeed, "down-to-earth" people are tired of uneducated bigots like those unnamed few whom I have refuted–––yet again with the facts––– feining superiority over educated people like us.

And we won't keep quiet about it anymore.

Last edited by l'étranger; 10-09-2009 at 05:59 PM..
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Old 10-09-2009, 06:21 PM
 
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Originally Posted by l'étranger View Post

Second, unless one has achieved multi-millionaire economic status, either by one's commercial achievements or familial connections, and adheres to moderation in his or her spending habits, no "financial security" is possible in the United States. In fact, as the Nobel Laureate Paul Krugman has conclusively shown, France and Britain enable greater levels of upward social mobility for the poor and lower middle class than does the United States. Therefore, any self-advertisement about achieving "financial security" is either an unseemly bit of braggadocio on the part of an arriviste or one very empty boast, immune to the actual realities of American life.
I'm in no position to speak for America and can only offer anecdotal accounts from living and doing business the the SF Bay Area...

Part of my job involves procuring services from area vendors... a number of which are first generation businesses founded by those that immigrated from Mexico or Asian Countries...

Several have said they arrived in California with nothing but a dream and ambition and are very proud of the lever of success they have achieved... I would dare say financial security... maybe it is different elsewhere? Here in the East Bay there is no shortage of individuals that have realized the American Dream...
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Old 10-09-2009, 10:07 PM
 
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Dear ultrarunner:

With all due respect, by your own account, you offer merely personal, anecdotally based recounting of the first-generation businesses founded by "Mexican" and Asian acquaintances of yours. But that does not give us a comprehensive analysis of what economic and social position these immigrants attained even before leaving their home countries, which would in fact give them quite a number of advantages (see Malcolm Caldwell's Outliers), such as education, capital, cultural capital (Pierre Bourdieu), language skills for staking out a niche in the country to which they immigrate. Moreover, we would venture to remind you that what you surmise as "Mexican" and Asian first-generation do not represent the experiences of millions of other such immigrants, unless of course you feel that anecdote and first-hand acquaintance is the equal to or superior to comprehensive, peer-evaluated academic research of the kind that say, Paul Krugman, undertakes.

The first-hand, subjective experience does not substitute for rational, empirically based study. My own mother and father are immigrants, one from Latin America, the other from Northern England. They are exceedingly well-to-do. But their realization of the "American Dream" occurred in the 1960s, not the 2000s. Furthermore, advanced university education fueled their ascension. But their experiences were most certainly not a "shared" one, given that the English parent did not suffer the raw racism that the Latin-American one did, and in fact advanced at a faster rate precisely because of his English Protestant background (White) than did the better educated parent of Latin-American Catholic background.

This does not weigh in the arguments I have thus far made, nor would I wager you or anyone would accept them as definitive or even remotely suggestive of what entails the "American Dream" and the rates of those who would receive it. One prefers to cite more objective sources, and subordinate the subjective experience as secondary, i.e., that which gives texture to the otherwise disinterested enquiry of fact.

Here then are some facts. Currently, every available statistic indicates the following:

1) The American middle-class has lost earning power since 1968 whereas the top percentile has seen its wealth expand exponentially. As economists such as Krugman and Steiglitz have shown, this is directly attributable not to the rise of information-age technocracy as David Brooks so fatuously posits, but rather changes in labor and tax law that enhances the power of the wealthy.
2) Currently, one percent of the American population controls somewhere between ninety and ninety-five percent of the wealth, and with this control comes inordinate power to shape law, let alone custom, mores, and access to the "lever of success" to which you claim your acquaintances' example as being open to all. Or have you not read, for example, that those who had caused the Wall Street meltdown have not only been saved but also rewarded for their "brilliance." Those who lost their retirement, their investments, their very homes, on the other hand, are relegated to hearing more stories about "the lever of success."

More to the point, companies need not show any loyalty to their workers. They need not share in the profits. They need provide health care. They need not even provide due cause for layoff or firing–––after all, to press a case in court requires that one have the monies to pay for "white-shoe" law firms with Ivy and like-positioned university educated attorneys to litigate on one's behalf––-and just as a reminder of things as they are, there are currently six unemployed individuals for every available position.

I can agree with you that in the East Bay there "is no shortage of individuals that have achieved the American Dream." Indeed, Crocker Highlands, Montclair, Oakmore, Rockridge, Sequoyah Heights in Oakland alone amply testify to this, and I most assuredly applaud and celebrate this success and the gracious, civilized life-style that accrues to those who have achieved as such.

But based on the overwhelming weight of the evidence, I would not for a moment suggest that the splendid American Dream of Lafayette, Orinda Piedmont, Berkeley Hills, or Oakland Hills obviates the fact that the levers of success (advanced education, stable financial base, familial connections, social capital, et al) are anywhere near as open as one might have us believe, the successes of our very industrious and successful first-generation "Mexican" and Asian acquaintances notwithstanding.
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Old 10-09-2009, 10:49 PM
 
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There is always risk in using terms such as "The American Dream" without context...

The context I intended regarding the American Dream is where each successive Generation enjoys the opportunity of success the previous one could only imagine...

Equally important... the individuals I'm acquainted with are entrepreneurs... they are immigrants that often arrived with nothing and went on to start their own businesses... many in construction, janitorial, several own restaurants and one founded a very successful Limo Business...

Many have only rudimentary education, yet their children attend schools like Stanford and UC Berkeley...

I'm continually amazed the determination shown by many new comers to make a success of themselves and the willingness to put in the long hours necessary to make it happen...

This afternoon, I asked the owner of the Landscape Company my facility uses if his children work in the family business? He said the oldest graduated Nursing School and is doing very well and his son is studying to be an Engineer at Cal... Having a business was his dream and he wants better for his children... he started with one truck in 1995 and today has 12 employees and 6 trucks...

He is living the American Dream and credits America as the place that made it possible...

I think much of the American Dream is slanted towards individuals that are self-employed or start successful businesses...

It never equated in my mind working for someone as an employee to be the same...
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Old 10-09-2009, 10:59 PM
 
Location: West Coast Wanderer
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All this over an urban lake LOL
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Old 10-09-2009, 11:06 PM
 
Location: Zurich, Switzerland
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All this over an urban lake LOL
I drove by there yesterday.

They seem to have neared completion of that renovation project which had the whole Eastern Side of the lake closed off by that hideous temporary fence.

The wide sandstone colored walkway is now open to the public. Looks like all they have to do is put in the lawn around the areas they tore up.

It will be lovely once they finish.
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Old 10-09-2009, 11:50 PM
 
Location: West Coast Wanderer
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They have always kept up on Lake Merritt and Lakeside Park in general. Can't wait to see it again. I might be up there in December.
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