I'm afraid of Americans
- 01-28-2011, 11:28 AM
I'm afraid of Americans
Writing as a German from Germany, I begin to wonder "What is goin' wrong in the US of A"? after reading the newest paydays of hedgefund billionaires and that the defense budget of the U.S.A. is larger than the world's rest combined .... at the same time, record numbers of Americans are dependant on food banks.
Why is the world's richest country so brutally inequal that not being able to make ends meet means going to bed hungry?
- 01-28-2011, 11:46 AM
He is not talking about other countrys, he is saying why is it that a country that has the largest defence buget still has many of its citizens living in povety. A very very vaild point.
01-28-2011, 11:55 AM
It doesn't take a genius to understand that we are a superpower because of our defense budget.
If it wasn't for the money put into defense by the US, Nazi's would have France speaking German. The US would be speaking the queens language, Kuwait would cease to exist, etc etc.
The US government doesn't baby their citizens. No 23% VAT tax here. Everyone here has the opportunities if they wish to take them. I say kudo's to the billionaires!
The Historic PES Legend
01-28-2011, 12:01 PM
01-28-2011, 12:07 PM
I wouldn't draw a specific correlation between the defense budget and the perceived poverty level. But I agree we are on the wrong road. Look at other countries that are more socially liberal than we are that are having to reign in their policies because they are in fact unsustainable. Yet Obama wants to go full steam ahead senacting even more social policies that those countries are having to turn around.
As far as how we got here, its a long road we have been down. The culture in our politics that says you as a citizen you shouldn't be wealthy and we are going tax you in order to give more money and free services to poorer people, yet the politicians making those policies are very wealthy themselves. The idea that you aren't capable of being responsible for youself as an adult has crippled this country. The idea that the government wont let you fail has been around for decades. Yet if you don't fail, you wont learn the mistakes you are making and make adjustments in order to provide for yourself or your family because someone (the government) will always bail you out. That is on an individual as well as corporate level. And we can point to specific policies from the right and the left that exploit and further these philosophies that have been destructive to our country.
01-28-2011, 12:34 PM
In fact, I was not even trying to draw a specific correlation between defense spending and poverty - I just took this fact as one of many that makes me, as a foreigner observing a foreign country, scratch my head.
I can give you some URLs to articles that had and have me thinking about this, like
1) From 2004 "Working and poor" http://www.businessweek.com/magazine...5001_mz001.htm
2) From 2010 http://www.usatoday.com/money/econom...ing-poor_x.htm
The thing I find especially awful is how people who work from 9 to 5 or even more are reduced to trailerpark trash existences while others reap rewards that are completely out of line with anything anyone might deserve for actual productive work (I don't count moving money around as such).
I also find it in a way funny how the "tax cuts" that Dubya engineered are not even affordable - and, through increasing the deficits - will mean indirect higher costs in the future (interest payments) of which the major part will again be shouldered by the working poor for which every cut in public services often means an even lousier existence.
01-28-2011, 12:46 PM
That's all you had to say.
What is increasingly funny is that you say the interest is shouldered by the poor when in fact less than 50% of Americans even pay income tax, and yet the wealthy pay much more income tax than the poor by a large percentage. You sound like the kid with a bag of cheese nips crying cause someone else has real Cheez-Itz.
There is nothing equal in the US, the wealthy is penalized for being wealthy.
Germany has an income tax that tops out at 45% of earned income for people making 250K, then add in your 23% VAT sales tax. That is the difference, other countries just tax their way out. Americans have the power in the US, and all are saying to find another solution rather than just taxing us to death.
The Historic PES Legend
01-28-2011, 03:32 PM
I don't get involved in politics threads for very good reasons, and I will leave after saying this...
In his exit speech, George Washington maintained that the worst thing America could do is get involved in foreign affairs.
That is all.
-RecoverBro Zombie Specialist and Paracord Wrangler
-Independent due to lies that hurt my family. Loyal to myself and my Bro's.
01-28-2011, 03:35 PM
01-28-2011, 05:15 PM
OP is afraid of Americans... David Bowie was Afraid Of Americans.... I really thought this was about the song
01-28-2011, 06:32 PM
The top 1% pay 39% of all federal taxes, the top 25% pay about 86%, and the top 50% pay 97%.
The majority of the poor here stay poor cause it is easy for them. If they get everything for free anyway why work for it. If you have found a way to make money, started a business, worked your way up, whatever, why should you be punished so that someone who has not been able to accomplish what you did can live better?
01-29-2011, 03:24 AM
all of these statistics sound ok but in all reality USA is the greatest nation there is... we are the only supper power left in our planet... love it or hate it you cant deny it...
God is an American!!
01-29-2011, 07:19 AM
What's more to this? I think I detected what I like to call "american retardedness", a strange attitude that is reflective e.g. in running record deficits, but being unwilling to raise taxes for the wealthiest who sometimes even say themselves they are willing and able to share the burden of a sunken economy. But no, the "******* party" (=GOP) instead presents a moronic "pledge to america" that is just a "pledge for the rich".
01-29-2011, 09:09 AM
I could truly support a fiscal conservative if their actually was one left. My only hope is that their is one who will make a splash soon, regardless of affiliation. If not, the debt will rise, until someone (nation) wants to cash in their piece, and we crash and burn
01-29-2011, 09:20 AM
01-29-2011, 11:31 AM
Sorry to disappoint you, EasyJEL - but no such thing here in Germany. The ruling coalition has decided to cut spending AND not cut taxes - simply because it's not affordable.
Check out our Public Debt / GNP ratio and compare it, and the trend, with America's. And than tell me who is retarded.
But no reason to become personal. I just don't get it how there can be such accumulation of private wealth on the back of the working / fighting poor (read e.g. about JPMorgan ripping off military families, the very same JPMorgan paying its CEO 60 million, yes million, bucks for a year's "work") while the deficits is growing by the second... but no, we won't raise taxes even if it means making the government non-functioning.
I tend to agree with AE14 - it looks as if America has become a gigantic racket in which it is all about "How can I fill up my pockets on the back of those who are not as smart / influential / unscrupolous as I am".
01-29-2011, 11:40 AM
01-29-2011, 12:40 PM
We wont leave Iraq and Afgahanistan until the last drop oil is pumped outta the last well.
Oil is gonna run out in under 37 years.
whats in the middle of Iraq / Afganaistan??! IRAN!! who still has oil. Saudi's Gawhar is pretty much done, the only reason we care about them is cuz they have ~3trillion invested into our stock market.
this isnt rocketscience. political parties have nothing to do with this, its about money and being a super power. USA = ROME
Serious Nutrition Solutions
01-29-2011, 12:42 PM
Militarily wise the US is the only country who can and did to invade 2 countries at the same time, look up the last that happen. The US has control over the Pacific ocean plus others.
I'm saying its perfect here but no other nation comes close to us, therefore we're the only supper power left and you forgot to mention another.
If you dont want to accept it thats your problem
01-29-2011, 12:45 PM
You basically have a huge part of the collected tax revenue going into interest payments on the ever increasing debt load, while much needed infrastructure improvements and the like are put on hold.
And what was known as the middle class is now close to non-existent. I wonder how you can get ahead when the cost of attending a public college or university has grown by over 50% the last decade, health insurance (or lack thereof) can put even upper middle class families into ruin if some illness catches on of its member.
When financial engineering has taken the place of real engineering and an industry that contributes nothing to public wealth and everything for its own pockets (also known as "heads I win, tails you lose" after the bailout and TARP in painfully favorable terms for those who paid out bonuses with money that was never earned in the first place) soaks in close to 40% of what the companies listed in the S&P 500 report as earnings, something has gone awfully wrong.
01-29-2011, 02:24 PM
I lived in your golden country for enough time to know that where you live is not all sunshine and kittens. For pimping your healthcare, your hospitals were filthy, medicine about 30 years behind, and private physicians were inept.
Here is the best contribution in recent time from Germany:
The title of this thread does make me chuckle. Coming from the country that gassed how many?
The Historic PES Legend
01-30-2011, 01:28 AM
Here is something from "Ueber liberal" Paul Volcker, former FED chief:
Is the correct way to build and run a society
a) trying to let as many employees / workers share the wealth that they generate by paying decent wages and benefits or
b) not? (like Wal Mart paying some of its employees so little they have to get support from the state of California, while its CEO pulls in 20 million bucks a year)
The american way seems to have become b), and if you feel it's wrong, you are - surprise - a communist / socialist / liberal.
01-30-2011, 09:14 AM
Why does a low level employee deserve to "Share the wealth"? BS.. if you want wealth, do something about it.
This nanny state cradle to grave mentality is what is infecting America.
The Historic PES Legend
01-30-2011, 09:31 AM
You mean Germany, the country with a lower birthrate than death rate? that had to open up huge amounts of eastern european immigration to keep the tax base up with low paid workers to continue to support the social programs for retirees a little longer? thats a ponzi scheme that only works for a little while, try again please.
As far as it goes again, the upper end of income pays a higher percentage of taxes than they are a percentage of income. And in america, everyone has the same potential for greatness, the problem is that most don't choose to exercise that, and instead concentrate on watching professional sports and what rims are on their car over educating and bettering themselves. If the people don't like what executives are paid, they can stop using those companies services, or protest. Thats what freedom is about.
01-30-2011, 09:33 AM
LOL ... there is no "poverty" in the USA. Please don't take everything the socialist European media says as truth - it isn't.
Fact is ... we have TRUE poverty in about one location in the US - the Appalachians. These people choose to live this way - as the government has spent MILLIONS over the years on education and welfare programs there. It hasn't helped. The young Appalachians that are smart and ambitious grow up and move away - the rest remain. These are mostly white people by the way - hillbillies pretty much.
No person is in "poverty" who owns a cellphone - and, you'd be hard pressed to find anyone in the US (outside the Appalachians) who doesn't own a cell phone and a contract that includes texting. Sorry - but if you have enough money to own a cell phone - you're not in poverty. You want to see "poverty" - see Ethiopia.
One thing I will say though - our defense budget is too big because we defend Europe from Russia and China. Personally - I don't care much for Europe anymore - kind of look at most of them as spoiled brats who believe that freedom is free and doesn't require sacrifice.
Leave them to the Russians I say.
EDIT: And as far as European Socialism being a success - we can see, virtually everywhere in Europe - that governments are collapsing under the weight of their own welfare programs. I've traveled in Europe extensively and it is no paradise. EVERYTHING costs more money there than it does in the US due to the taxes. I was charged half a kroner in Norway just to buy a bag to put my groceries in. That doesn't happen in the US.
And the Nanny States of Europe are out of control. You don't have the quality of individual liberty in Europe that you have in the US - not by any stretch of the imagination. Farting is practically illegal in Europe. In Norway - there are only certain days of the week and hours where you can buy booze - and it's damned expensive. Forget owning a firearm of your choosing - or a car of your choosing.
I've been thinking - WHERE IN THE WORLD CAN I GO WHEN THE US GOES FULL SOCIALIST?
And the answer is ... NO WHERE ... there's no where you can go to enjoy the kind of freedom we now enjoy in the US. And that sad - because we are starting to give up our own freedoms here because, like Europe - we have a lot of spoiled brats who want things handed to them.
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