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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Comments

bee

The essential issue we are confronting is that many US workers are over paid. American workers by and larger are seriously over paid given their contribution to production. Much of their activity can be cheaply outsourced.

Raising taxes may in the short term address perceived inequities but does NOT address the fundemental problem that American workers are not cost competitive. By raising taxes we can put pressure on high income jobs and drive them abroad as well. Taxes are not a solution the real problem of low value added American workers.

If we want to spur income growth we need to lower corporate taxes to make the US a cost competitive environment for production. Next we need to encoruage Americans to actually study material subjects (we don't need more sociology and english majors). Let's be real for a moment and accept that companies are hiring workers that are trained in he sciences and enngineering in other countries because they are plentiful. Americans are not as well trained. Much of this has to do with LAZINESS. Americans think they are entitked to high wages for poor grades in easy majors.

Lafayette

"Between 2000 and 2005, the US economy grew by 12 per cent in real terms and productivity"

I suggest that it is improper to show this range of figures. 2000 was the year of the dot.com bust when the bubble deflated seriously. Economic activity afterwards is significantly different than that before, and the figures are only indicative. But, they do not explain "Why?".

The Fed had observed an expansionary policy for most of Greenspan's mandate and it is important to know why productivity behaved so well previously compared to after 2000.

One cannot ascribe ALL the productivity increase to IT spending. That would be too simplistic. Productivity also is provoked by new means of doing old things, but better. Have any microeconomic studies done in this area, that is, the sources of productivity enhancement?

Arthur Eckart

Right Bee, too many believe upper income people are the problem, when in reality lower income people are the problem. The sooner society accepts this reality, the sooner proper steps will be taken to solve this problem.

Lafayette

AE: "... too many believe upper income people are the problem, when in reality lower income people are the problem. "

Right, that's what the Tsar Nicholas thought as well in 1917 ...

Arthur Eckart

Lafayette, are you reading dead people's thoughts? Was the subsequent Soviet Union better? I think everyone can agree poor people need real help.

Lafayette

"I think everyone can agree poor people need real help."

I can agree with that. I cannot agree that the heads of large corporations are irreproachable.

The fines/condemnations by trial have simply been too numerous. I maintain, as said earlier, the rapacity which has been discovered is simply the tip of the iceberg.

You obviously have no idea whatsoever how a CEO can "stock" the BOD with cronies and manipulate its Compensation Committee. It is tantamount to pirating corporate assets (stock-options, comp & ben) to the benefit of a select few.

There are NO regulations in the matter of BOD election, its complexion, its restrictions, its oversight - on a national level. Nada, niente, rien.

It's high time that this matter was attended to by national regulators. Directors of public corporations both manage and manipulate assets that they do not "own". If that is not thievery, then I don't know what is.

When a company "goes public" and is listed on an equity exchange, it fundamentally changes its ownership in order to access public capital. The rules change. The CEO's do not , however, and some seem to think that, when the good times roll, they are endowed with every reason to dip into the kitty for their own personal gain. The kitty does not belong to them, it belongs to shareholders, like me. So, they are accountable to others, like me, for their actions.

For the moment, it seems that "winner takes all" prevails. Perhaps they think that running a publically listed company is like playing football in the Rose Bowl?

The corporate culture, especially in America, needs some fundamental lessons in ethics.

Lafayette

"The essential issue we are confronting is that many US workers are over paid."

Yes, that is true. "Many" are and these people find themselves in the unskilled sector of manufacturing easily dislocatable to the Far East.

There's a middle-ground, somewhere. We simply have to find the proper balance of outsourcing and in-house production. For the moment, outsourcing is affecting mostly unskilled labor, but as the Chinese climb up the ladder of technical competence, then this problem will get very acute indeed for the great mass of people who work in relatively advanced and therefore skilled jobs.

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