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Joined 1 year ago
Cake day: June 10th, 2023

  • One more problem that at least I see with some EU-wide wealth tax is that EU doesn’t have a good track record of being able to really consider thoroughly the differences between nations. Decisions are made by the largest countries in the end and they don’t really know what, for example, a million euros buys you in Estonia, Sweden, Spain, Bulgaria, Hungary etc.

    I would actually be more welcoming to some generic EU tax, but these kinds of “let’s tax the wealthy people” taxes are hard to do on the EU level since “wealthy” has so many different numbers across the EU area.

  • Yes, I’m comparing economic systems. Slavery is an economic system. While slavery allows you owning all aspects of a humans life, Capitalism and Wageslavery only allow you to own some aspects of a humans life (Mainly 8hrs lifetime/day on average).

    Could you open this a bit more because I’m not sure I understand your perspective currently? From what I know, slavery by itself is absolutely not an economic system but it used to be a part of capitalistic system where black people were traded like pets and slaves had a market value where if they were doing their work better and had some education, they would cost more for the next owner just like some people would pay more money for a dog that has been specifically trained for assisting blind people for example. It’s a disgusting and revolting thing of past and anyone comparing current day work life to that must either have some undealt personal issues or a weird perspective to things that at least I don’t know of. At least it needs heavy clarification for others to understand the point.

    In capitalism you are free to own pretty much anything you’d like as long as you can afford it. People can debate about wages but up to a certain point the amount one earns is dependent on the choices one makes during their lives. There is also some aspect of luck here where your family matters, your natural interests matter etc. but the capitalistic system itself is not the limiting factor here. Also, capitalism is not 100% USA but instead there are lots of countries in Europe (Nordics especially) where capitalism is very much there but government takes care of the weakest people and tries to offer all options in life to kids in poor families. Trading time for money is no different to living in the small village where you spend your days working for the community and maybe get enough time to sleep during the day. We actually have it quite well nowadays, and after working for a while, you could as well decide to not work for 8h/day but instead maybe 6h/day or maybe only three or four days a week instead of five. Most of the time it comes down to the choices you make during your lifespan. Not always of course, there are always people that just can’t get on their feet and that’s why we also need the government to help the weakest portion of people.

    It doesn’t help telling a single mom raising a child on her own and living paycheck to paycheck, to just move.

    I mean if there’s nothing there for the family in the place where they currently live, what else should they do? Shout into the void and hope that someone miraculously comes to offer them a roof on their head and food on the table? Nobody enjoys that situation, and moving into a different location where the mother gets a new (better) job will absolutely benefit the entire family. If, and only if, the mother could get a higher paying job in a different location which would raise the entire family’s life quality, they absolutely should move even if it would feel difficult at first. Some (capitalistic) countries even offer support for that (if they were unemployed at first).

    This says more about you and your social life than anyone else’s. And you advocating on forcing this experiment of a lifestyle onto others.

    Of course it does. I’ve done it, multiple times, and I can’t understand why someone would rather be stuck in a shitty situation instead of moving into a new location where they have opportunities to build a better life. It’s not a lifestyle, it’s a choice. One shouldn’t of course have to move every year but if they live in a tiny village without any jobs, it just makes sense for them to move into a city with lots of open jobs to get on with their life. You always have the option of moving back if you feel like it - most people just don’t do so because they see no future in the place they left behind.

    China has been outperforming western countries on a variety of metrics. North Korea had more than 20% of their population decimated an forced into isolation. Cuba has higher life expectancy is way more progressive and the US, despite crippling embarings. There’s more than one interpretation, you know.

    Sure, cherry pick some numbers here and there and even Iceland feels like a tropical island. China has made numbers out of thin air for a long time and it starts to show now that their real estate industry is in shambles. Thanks to their otherwise restrictive money system, most wealthy citizens there bought empty properties just to park their wealth somewhere, and now that the prices start to come down, it also starts to hit the people as well. Cuba vs. US, well, given the list, cherry picking is cherry picking.

  • It doesn’t matter where you work, as long as it’s privately owned you’re at the mercy of the firms owners. Be it big or be it small. Would you make the argument to a slave that one owner is better than the other based on the size? Or would you despise the entire economic system of slavery?

    If you really want to compare working to a company you can freely choose and you can leave whenever you like, sure. In that case I would make the argument to a slave, that they absolutely should find a kind master who treats them more like a human being than all the other scumbag slavelords do. It’s just that the slaves were actual slaves, they didn’t have any freedom of choice unlike you and I have.

    1. That’s really privileged to say. Moving is not affordable to everybody
    2. Then there’s the social aspect. Not everyone is willing to leave their friends and family behind?
    1. It depends. People from the poor countries are somehow moving without a dime. You are actually really privileged, if you already own so much crap that you think you need all that when you move somewhere. Realistically you only need yourself, your IDs and a one-way ticket to wherever you are going.
    2. That’s a choice. It also tells more about your friends and family if they abandon you just for moving elsewhere nowadays when we are 24/7 connected to each other in multiple ways. New friends can also always be made in new locations - been there, done that. It is scary at first but loooots of people are doing exactly that all the time because otherwise they would have to work a shitty job for shitty wage and they would hate themselves and everyone else around them all the time for that.

    No noone is saying that? Every society needs a method of procuring the means of life, which can only be done an economy? What I’ve been saying is that you’re forced to participate in capitalism, because the majority places where you can work are capitalist.

    There are alternatives, it’s just that maybe you wouldn’t REALLY want to live in that alternative economy? China is a slight alternative, there is this fake capitalism going on and it’s not looking too great. North Korea is a 100% different country and you can see how well they are doing. Pretty much all socialistic countries in the world are in a bad shape and people are fleeing into the capitalistic world people here in Lemmy so much loathe. I get it, there are lots and lots and lots and lots of really bad companies and bosses and co-workers around that only think of themselves, but in the meantime there are also lots of places that do care about their employees because they know they couldn’t exist without them and that people tend to work better if they enjoy what they do and where they work.

  • Technically true, if they are a highly skilled worker that’s in low supply

    You don’t have to earn wild sums of money, you just have to be able to live below your means and save the rest. Sure, the absolute poorest people don’t have that luxury, and also in very expensive locations it’s the same even for some relatively high salary people too. For the rest of us, assuming that our capitalistic system doesn’t collapse, 500e (or dollars) per month for ~30 years gets you there. If you’re able to start while you’re 20 by some miracle, you would be a millionaire by 50. Or, 300e a month for roughly 37 years gets you above the mark. Now, one million euros or dollars will not buy you the same stuff then as it would today so you still wouldn’t be “filthy rich” but that wasn’t the point here. Also, if you were to just stop saving after passing the magical two commas, the money would theoretically double in 9 years making you a multi-millionaire. This is assuming 9% yearly interest for your investments over the whole time which is slightly below S&P500 all-time average (not accounting inflation).

    Compounding interest is the keyword and that’s why rich people keep on getting richer and poor people poorer - it works both ways, in savings and in loans. Not everyone has to achieve the million coin mark either - just be aware of how the system functions and make your decisions accordingly. If you decide to live in a nicer location or enjoy traveling or nice vehicles or eat nice food or do whatever instead of accumulating wealth, it’s completely fine. That’s actually required for our eternal growth in the market after all. On the other hand, wealth accumulation gives you options in the future if you get fed up with your boss for example.

    ftfy. please consider reading theory

    I think you might’ve misunderstood my point, and that’s probably my bad for leaving it a bit ambiguous. At least in my mind, the people that get to hundreds of millions or into billions, are usually some startup founders (where success is mostly luck) or people achieving big corporation CxO level which usually is not happening by just making friends on the way climbing up the corporate ladder. That also needs a little bit of luck, because as you mentioned, you could be shafted at any point in your career hard. Also you need to be a workaholic and at least slightly narcissistic. Getting born into the right family wouldn’t hurt either. So that’s not something everyone could do in my opinion and that’s why I wouldn’t mix “normal” workforce into this at all.

    And well, I don’t know what you mean by “refusing to participate in such system”. Usually people have a choice of working for a big corporation or choosing to work for smaller companies that tend to be more employee-friendly, at least in my experience. Maybe there are differences in some expertise areas that I’m not aware of but otherwise if you wish to work for some humane employers, seek smaller companies and skip the Elon Musk -like sweatshops that try to squeeze you to work 60 hours a week minimum all the time. Relocation is not an entirely bad thing either if that helps you find a healthier workplace. Now, if you refuse to work at all, well, that wouldn’t work even in socialism or in small African villages where everyone expects others to contribute to the village functioning. You just have to find the right “village” that you want to help keep on running and maybe grow it while at it if everyone so desires.

  • I mean, given enough time, just a mere salary man can become a millionaire (and with more time, a multi-millionaire) only by keeping their spending low and stashing the rest of their net salary into index funds. Sure, that’s capitalism which isn’t too popular in Lemmy, but it’s just an example of how a millionaire can really just be a normal, somewhat frugal, person. They aren’t showing their wealth though because that’s the reason they are able to save such a nest-egg so you can’t really tell if your neighbor is secretly wealthy or not.

    Billionaires (and “multihundredmillionaires”) are a completely different group of people though, and no normal person is able to amass such wealth without a shit-ton of luck and most probably some abuse as well.

  • So “too big to fail” or something?

    I don’t know if you lived through the Internet Explorer era, but that was exactly the same situation in browsers back in the day. Internet Explorer was preinstalled in every Windows computer, so in pretty much every computer, and it was deemed as “unbeatable” because people were too lazy to install anything else. In retrospective, it didn’t take too long for Google Chrome to beat IE market share and nowadays pretty much the whole world uses Chrome and nothing else. Now, with IE, EU had to step in and force Microsoft to present their users a dialog to choose their browser in a fresh Windows installation which did have a role in that market share change. With Steam there isn’t a need for that, because every user has to go and explicitly install Steam client to their computer before using it. Same goes with Chrome.

    Although, vendor lock really is a real issue, and I do agree with you that if one has thousands of euros/dollars worth of games in their Steam account, it’s purely convenient to keep on buying their next games on Steam as well. What I don’t agree with is, that if there was a new competitor that was better in every way imaginable and they were able to sell the games on their platform for, let’s say, -5% constantly, people wouldn’t start using their service. You have to remember, that there is also a constant stream of new gamers (young people) that haven’t even created a Steam account, and nothing is preventing them from choosing another service for their first game purchase. It’s just that there isn’t a real alternative to Steam currently.

  • Exactly. Why should they succeed if they don’t even try to win the competition?

    Streaming platforms for TV series and movies went into the direction of every large movie company running their own streaming platform and only limiting their own content to their own platform which lead into a bad customer experience when you just wanted to see the latest Disney or HBO or whatever thing. I think it’s a good thing EA and others didn’t succeed doing the same in gaming industry and only limiting their games to their own stores even though they did try really hard. That’s not even competition, it’s just being greedy.

    A true competitor to Steam would try to sell and serve games of their own and also made by others. I guess Epic tries to do that in a sense but they also lack the actual effort of making a good product and instead tries to win some market share by just throwing lots of money at it. I know it’s hard to build an actually good software product (because I work in the industry) but I also know it’s not impossible. Somehow the companies that have the means to compete just aren’t able to get their shit together and for some reason that’s the reason why we shouldn’t like Valve either?

  • I brought Epic just as an example of an actual competitor actually trying to compete against Steam, sorry if I I was a bit unclear about that.

    So lots of entrepreneurs get rich when they make a product that solves people’s problems in one way or another and it sells with a profit - let it be a small profit or a large profit. The thing with capitalism is, if you make your profit too large, eventually a competitor will come and provide an equal or better product with slightly smaller profit or they figured out a way to make the product cheaper and still maintain the same profit margin with a lower price gaining a market share.

    The problem with Apple, other large tech companies or some grocery chains in some parts of world (this is the case where I live actually) is that they are not allowing a healthy competition in the first place. If a competitor appears on the market, they will buy them before gaining too much traction, or if that’s not possible, they will do everything they can in their power to drive them out of the market by lobbying politicians, or if they control some valuable aspect of the market, restrict access to said market.

    Valve hasn’t practiced any of those shady tactics as far as I know of and that’s why people actually think of them as one of the “good guys” even if it is somewhat unhealthy. You shouldn’t try to beat down the people playing with a friendly rule set of capitalism because they are the ones driving the competition forward.

  • I mean I get what you’re saying, but Valve is actually one of the few large tech companies that are providing an actually good service (Steam). People should be allowed to make money by providing value to their customers because that’s the motivation of building such services and products in the first place.

    The hatred should go towards the companies abusing their position and violating customers and then just cashing excessive amounts of money for a crap product/service that has no real competition. If Valve had started making their competitors lives harder, by generating lots of nonsense lawsuits for example, they should absolutely be blasted down to hell by everybody. As long as they are just earning lots of bucks by providing a service people want to use without restricting using other services and playing with healthy rules otherwise as well, it’s all fine and everyone working on the great service SHOULD earn more than average.