User talk:Q0

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P-Foster Talk ""Santorum is the cream rising to the top."" 00:41, 31 March 2012 (UTC)

Question[edit]

A shrinking private sector has nothing to do with wealth disparity? On what planet? nobsCorporations are people, too.

Government spending has gone up, and yet so has income inequality. You ignore all the key factors when you try to simplify things by saying big government = socialism, while small government = capitalism. The fact simply is that the US defies the usual stereotypes here. We spend a lot of money on health care, with abysmal results. We also spend a lot of money on education, but that education is seriously lacking. The same goes for welfare, which has a huge budget and yet seemingly does nothing to combat poverty (again, unlike just about every other country).
So what's the problem? 1) In order to spend any money on these things, you have to fight through significant lobbying and a good chunk of congress; 2) So, every bill is fought over tooth and nail, and most only pass once they're neutered; 3) That neutering usually involves incentives that are like sacrifices fed to the free market (insurance company mandates on health care, school vouchers, etc); 4) The end result are policies which are terribly inefficient at doing what they should be doing.
Of course, some of these are actually pretty good at getting money back into the private sector, to the point where it almost seems like it was meant to be this way: Republicans (and by now many Democrats) believe government is the problem, not the solution --> So they write bills for government spending that work in favor of corporate/free market interests --> Those government programs eat up a lot of money and yet fail to address the problems they're supposed to --> So the same people can tell us how government is the problem, not the solution. Q0 (talk) 05:00, 30 April 2012 (UTC)
There is no question government spending increases over time, as population increases. The question is the increase in relation to population growth. If the government sector consumes 20% of GDP at one point in time, and decades later consumes 25%, the private sector (whom the burden to falls on) has shrunk. While the burden has increased, the number of persons able to carry the burden decreases.
What you are discussing is the wp:Gini coefficient in relation to the growth of government spending. This has been studied extensively.
An economy is either static or dynamic. It is either growing or it's not. If it's growing, income disparities appear, because not everyone is in a position to take advantage of policies that foster growth. Yet the government, the bourgeois middle class, and the poor all are dependent on growth. If the economy is stationary (no growth or zero sum) a leveling effect can occur, the rich get poorer and the income gap narrows. This is usually accompanied by capital flight, which only makes the process of jump starting growth more difficult. nobsCorporations are people, too. 09:18, 30 April 2012 (UTC)
See: http://www.tnr.com/blog/timothy-noah/98781/inequality-necessary Q0 (talk) 04:25, 1 May 2012 (UTC)
Yes, that's a good political argument, but it's a comparison snapshots of several countries at one moment in time. Factors such as, age of population, can produce big disparities between nations. We should look at individual cases over decades. Some of this stuff is highly technical, but you can read pg. 6 here, or this IMF Working Paper, Conclusions pgs.21-22, "the benefits of government spending can be captured by the non-poor", or this World Bank report, "The size of government spending (expenditures as a percentage of GDP) has an inequality reducing effect, but this effect is not independent of the size of the government deficit. Government deficits, in fact, have a regressive impact on the distribution of income, and this impact is of a magnitude largely similar to the positive effect of government spending." (pgs. 8-9). Or read te whole thing. nobsCorporations are people, too. 05:34, 1 May 2012 (UTC)
Certainly a deficit the likes of the one the US runs up is a notable part of the equation, but that's the exact thing you expect to happen when government spending goes up, and yet tax revenue goes down.
As well, the quote that "the benefits of government spending can be captured by the non-poor" is exactly like what I was describing in my initial response.
There are just too many things lining up that disprove the argument of: "Well that might work elsewhere, but not in America". If stable European governments with impressive social spending programs (ones that actually work) can continue to have healthy economies despite large tax burdens, why can't the US? I only hope eventually we get tired of the endless newspaper articles on how the Swedish social safety net is going to come crashing down ("sometime"), and actually look in the mirror and focus on the very real problems we have in America. Q0 (talk) 08:11, 3 May 2012 (UTC)
Yes, we're on the same song sheet over the non-poor capturing government spending intended to narrow the income gap and lift the truly impoverished. Prime examples in the US would be Fannie Mae. A caveat on the World Bank & IMF links -- both I think pre-date the Collapse of 2008, both recommend expanding the poor's access to capital credit markets, which basically means subprime mortgages. It's safe to say, this thinking is being re-evaluated.
As to health of European socialism, this recent Oliphant cartoon says it all. nobsCorporations are people, too. 01:39, 4 May 2012 (UTC)
But that link to Revenues as a % of GDP (OMB data) is very interesting; revenues rise and fall for a variety of factors (output, growth, employment, etc). But look closely at the chart. The highest percent there is 20 something percent in 1944; the Reagan & Clinton eras compare relatively closely; the 60s, when the US simultaneously embarked on the Vietnam war, massive Great Society social programs and an expensive space race, those revenue figures seem slightly less than the Reagan & Clinton years. nobsCorporations are people, too. 01:47, 4 May 2012 (UTC)