Is income inequality unjust, and if so, where is the injustice?

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Now, some of you are going to think this is a crock of shit, and others are probably going to be more sympathetic.
And I am almost willing to bet that which group you fall into could be predetermined by looking at how financially well-off you are.

--Patrick
Not financially well-off. Maybe not a crock of shit, but I don't exactly think this is significant information.
 

Necronic

Staff member
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I was going to take issue with that video until I saw that cheating section. I have always felt that greed and self-interest are good, but ONLY if the players don't cheat. If they cheat the equation flips wildly and greed/self-interest becomes very destructive. That cheating and the candy thing.....ugh. Makes me sick.
 
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Ooo! Necro! Another study has been done, but this one was not so much about income as it was about the sorts of liberties a person is willing to take and the motivation behind them.

The upper class isn't less ethical, just more likely to lie for selfish reasons.
So...glad to know the reality is that we're ultimately on or about on par with each other as regards our level of ethics, I guess.

--Patrick
 
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Ooo! Necro! Another study has been done, but this one was not so much about income as it was about the sorts of liberties a person is willing to take and the motivation behind them.

The upper class isn't less ethical, just more likely to lie for selfish reasons.
So...glad to know the reality is that we're ultimately on or about on par with each other as regards our level of ethics, I guess.

--Patrick
TIL lying to help other people is just as bad as lying to help yourself...
 
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I almost expect this video to be taken down at some point. (EDIT: It was!)
As the plot for a reality show, I can get behind Give + DocumentIt. People could learn a lot from such a show. A lot about people, about finance, about budgets, etc.
...but Give + PitThemAgainstEachOtherANDThePublicEye + DocumentIt? It's like watching someone place two piles of meat in the big cat enclosure at a struggling zoo and then poke the animals with sticks just to see what they'll do. Dramatic entertainment? Sure...but also infuriatingly void of any genuinely altruistic sentiment.

--Patrick
 
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I almost expect this video to be taken down at some point.
As the plot for a reality show, I can get behind Give + DocumentIt. People could learn a lot from such a show. A lot about people, about finance, about budgets, etc.
...but Give + PitThemAgainstEachOtherANDThePublicEye + DocumentIt? It's like watching someone place two piles of meat in the big cat enclosure at a struggling zoo and then poke the animals with sticks just to see what they'll do. Dramatic entertainment? Sure...but also infuriatingly void of any genuinely altruistic sentiment.

--Patrick
Looks like a variation of the prisoners dilemma. Except it's a "reality" show, meaning it'll be scripted and fake.
 
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Life is inherently unjust.

Yes... But that's why we shouldn't model society on the foundations of evolution and "life".

If anything society is constructed exclusively to take nature out of the equation. Nature is indifferent to suffering. Society and civilization is constructed to circumvent the notion of survival of the fittest.
 
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I almost expect this video to be taken down at some point.
As the plot for a reality show, I can get behind Give + DocumentIt. People could learn a lot from such a show. A lot about people, about finance, about budgets, etc.
...but Give + PitThemAgainstEachOtherANDThePublicEye + DocumentIt? It's like watching someone place two piles of meat in the big cat enclosure at a struggling zoo and then poke the animals with sticks just to see what they'll do. Dramatic entertainment? Sure...but also infuriatingly void of any genuinely altruistic sentiment.

--Patrick
I saw this a couple of weeks ago and it struck me as being particularly evil. The entire concept is just gross.
 
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Looks like a variation of the prisoners dilemma. Except it's a "reality" show, meaning it'll be scripted and fake.
In the show "Deal or No Deal," it was just one person against one person, and it was all-or-nothing. In this case it's not so extreme (doesn't have to be all-or-nothing) but instead of it being an elective like a game show, they're messing with people's actual lives.

--Patrick
 
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..who give consent and sign a waiver to be on t.v. Should we feel sorry for the ignorant masses that play the lottery or walk into a casino?
From what I've read, they were told they'd be involved in a documentary about money. Which is technically true, I suppose.
 
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Many (dare I say most?) people have something that motivates them that is more of a lure than money.

I cannot even begin to try and explain how much it irks me that I was (and probably forever will be) denied the opportunity to experiment with the Universe due to a combination of lack of equipment, lack of funds, restrictions on materials, etc. I have a curiosity which cannot be contained, but I run into soooo many roadblocks that keep me from following it where it otherwise would lead. I look at the achievements of Da Vinci, Franklin, Tesla, etc., and while I don't for one moment think that I would bend History as much as any of them, the fact that I am denied the opportunity to even try due to my urgent need to spend almost every waking moment keeping a roof over my family's heads and food in our bellies makes me SO FRUSTRATED.

You could "pay" me in food, shelter, and lab supplies, and I would probably live a productive and happy life on next to no "income," but that is not how this world works...and it burns. Burns.

This could've been me.

--Patrick
 
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To the thread's title, when one person's decision to relocate actually threatens the economy of the entire state of New Jersey, I think that's a definite thing you can point to and say, "Hmm, perhaps there really is some threshold beyond which income inequality could be considered unjust."

From the article:
The New Jersey resident [is] hedge-fund billionaire David Tepper. In December, Mr. Tepper declared himself a resident of Florida after living for over 20 years in New Jersey. He later moved the official headquarters of his hedge fund, Appaloosa Management, to Miami.
[...]
Mr. Tepper’s move is a case study in how tax collections are affected when income becomes very highly concentrated. With the top tenth of 1 percent of the population reaping the largest income gains, states with the highest tax rates on the rich are growing increasingly dependent on a smaller group of superearners for tax revenue.

In New York, California, Connecticut, Maryland and New Jersey, the top 1 percent pay a third or more of total income taxes. Now a handful of billionaires or even a single individual like Mr. Tepper can have a noticeable impact on state revenues and budgets.
--Patrick
 
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GasBandit

Staff member
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To the thread's title, when one person's decision to relocate actually threatens the economy of the entire state of New Jersey, I think that's a definite thing you can point to and say, "Hmm, perhaps there really is some threshold beyond which income inequality could be considered unjust."

From the article:


--Patrick
Or, you know, exactly what everybody has been saying about progressive taxes coming home to roost.
 
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Or, you know, exactly what everybody has been saying about progressive taxes coming home to roost.
Since this is apparently "everybody but me," can you expand on this a little?
Because the only thing I know "everybody" has been saying about progressive taxes is that it was dumb to cap them at some sort of max instead of maintaining the sort of asymptotic relationship they had in the late 30's/early 40's.

--Patrick
 
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Since this is apparently "everybody but me," can you expand on this a little?

--Patrick
He's implying that since rich people have the ability to be as mobile as they wish, taxing them progressively is unwise because it will simply encourage them to move to state/countries that charge them less, hurting local economies when they move.

Part of the problem of this is that the extremely wealthy have the means to avoid virtually all the downsides of leaving the vicinity of family: they have the means to connect with them over long distance, travel virtually anywhere, or bring them along for the ride. Part of them problem is that state/national barriers dissolve for the Rich in ways they don't for even exceptional middle class or poorer people; the common man cannot escape the effects of economic issues as readily as the Rich can.

But really, the main problem is that the Rich feel no accountability to their communities and view other human beings as replaceable, as well as that the suffering they cause by their actions is irrelevant as long as they themselves suffer no consequences. We should really be testing the Top 1% of Wealth Holders for psychopathy the same way they do for stock brokers now... I'd bet we'd see the same correlation.
 
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Or, you know, exactly what everybody has been saying about progressive taxes coming home to roost.
Yeah, that's clearly the problem, and not the fact that one person has managed to accrue so much of the wealth that they're single handedly able to ruin a states economy...

Nah, that's totally ok as long as you keep them there by having them pay less taxes...
 

GasBandit

Staff member
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Yeah, that's clearly the problem, and not the fact that one person has managed to accrue so much of the wealth that they're single handedly able to ruin a states economy...

Nah, that's totally ok as long as you keep them there by having them pay less taxes...
New Jersey decided they'd rather have 9% of nothing than 6% of what they were getting. Somehow Texas manages to get by better than most with 0% income tax.

Maybe the REAL problem is that income taxes are just a bad idea poorly executed in just about every situation.
 
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We should really be testing the Top 1% of Wealth Holders for psychopathy the same way they do for stock brokers now...
I didn't realize this was a thing.
I mean, it makes perfect sense, given the studies, but I didn't realize there was anything formal.

--Patrick
 
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