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Inequality in society


Bruce Tuncks
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The report that in the USA the richest 1% own 39% of the wealth and the poorest 50% own minus 2% impressed me.

How could this happen in a democracy where the 50% could elect whatever they liked?

Where is the most equal society anyway? Is it good or not to be equal?

Where is Australia headed and where do we come from?

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Bigger differences are pretty much happening everywhere. Does having money make it easier to make more money? I think most of us would conclude it does, and experience world wide would back that up with examples.. The very wealthy live in a different world and can insulate themselves from many of the unpleasant aspects of life in most places.. Where there is a big disparity of wealth there tends to be more incarceration and crime. A lot the nature of the distribution pattern is related to corruption of Governments, which is pretty widespread. Nev

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There's the corporate world, and then there's the rest of us. If you can wangle your way into the corporate world, you can arrange a salary larger than the PM's for much less responsibility.

If you wangle your way into a senior corporate job, you can forget about morals and ethics and looking after your fellow man, it's all about creaming as much wealth as you can gather on an unjust basis.

 

Charge mind-boggling amounts for your time, for your companys products, charge excessively even for just handling orders. Ensure you get renumerated way beyond your value, no-one can stop you from doing that, the income stream is huge.

Then when you become a multi-billionaire, give away a million or two, and make a big fella of yourself - even though you got all that wealth, by ripping off the plebs.

 

The greatest single thing wrong in this world, is that there is very little control or oversight over big companies and corporations.

Govts make soothing sounds that they are "regulating" the corporate world - the truth is, the corporate world laughs at "regulators".

Even when they get charged with offences and fined, the fine is usually of minimal value, like a mozzie bite to them.

We need Govts and pollies with balls to take on corporate greed, but the problem is, many corporations are bigger, more powerful, and have much more money than Govts. Guess who rules out of that setup?

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Corporate greed is doing very well in Aus. AMP employed a new CEO after the old one left, because of the way the company was found to be ripping people off by the banking royal commission.

New CEO got a reduced salary, but still very good. Next AGM after paying no dividend to shareholders and the share price dropping, the board wants to get approval to up the salary of the CEO. I am not talking thousands of dollars, million or so.

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What about Richard Branson crying for donations and support for Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Australia! He wants Govt support for a business that has made him a multi-billionaire!

Time to lay all your money on the table, mate!! You made mega-millions out of Virgin Australia, and sold down your stake while it was still worth big money!

 

Now, you want Govts to outlay taxpayers dollars so you can make billions again, when things come good! As Cormann and Frydenberg noted, the Australian Govt is not in the business of financing billionaires!

If you're in business, you take a sizeable risk. If you're in a huge business, you take a huge risk! But now you want Govts and taxpayers money to share the risk! I don't think so!

 

Branson has utilised his Necker Island in the Caribbean as a tax haven for 30 years! Because he's paid no taxes in either Britain or Australia for a lot of that time, I don't see where he should get taxpayers money!

 

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/04/20/richard-branson-says-he-needs-government-loan-for-virgin-atlantic.html

 

https://www.traveller.com.au/coronavirus-and-virgin-australia-richard-branson-to-mortgage-necker-island-to-bail-out-virgin-airlines-h1ni6c

Edited by Guest
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And you will notice that the fines for traffic offences are out of proportion to the fines imposed for property and personal injury offences, or even for breaking Court imposed restrictions (breaking Domestic Violence Orders, or failing to comply with Bail undertakings.)

 

the punishment is far worse if you are poor

 

That is why I believe that all offences against the traffic Regulations should be linked to a Demerit Point system, and at the same time, the monetary penalty should merely cover the administrative costs involved. Let's say that the monetary penalty takes into account the cost of the time spent in detecting an offence; the cost of entering the data relating to the offence, and the cost of maintaining the database. Would a cap of $100 + Demerit Points be equitable across Society?

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Those who flout the road rules will also flout the licencing rules.

 

That number is a very small percentage of all motorists. I bet you can think of at least half a dozen from amongst your acquaintances who have copped a big fine for doing something that broke the rules, but did not cause personal injury or property damage. (How long before Spacey put up his list?). Have you ever copped one in the mail for travelling between 40 and 60 kph in a school zone after 3:45 pm? Try to find a kid in a school zone at that time of day.

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BUT Inequality is rife !

Western Australia IS in lockdown with " hard boarders " for all.

UNLESS your a Billionaire.

 

" Billionaire Kerry Stokes and his wife Christine Simpson Stokes have made a surprise visit to Canberra to commemorate Anzac Day at the Australian War Memorial after the WA government granted them exemptions from hotel quarantine on medical grounds. ".

Then on to Sydney.

AND aviators can't fly.

spacesailor

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The W.A. border closure is not a totalitarian closure. There are plenty of exemptions, and if you think you have a case, you can apply to come to W.A.

W.A. has just relaxed the size gathering restrictions, you can gather in a group of 10 now, as long as social distancing is followed.

West Australians can now also leave home for non-contact recreational activities, such as private picnics in the park, fishing, boating, hiking or camping.

 

Your media quote is not accurate, it makes it sound like Stokes got special exemption to go to Canberra. He got exemption from staying in a quarantine hotel in Perth from April 8th, when he returned from the U.S.

He still had to spend 14 days in isolation in his home, from the 8th to the 22nd April. He served that 14 days, was cleared to leave his house for normal activities and went to Canberra in his private jet.

 

https://www.wa.gov.au/organisation/department-of-the-premier-and-cabinet/covid-19-coronavirus-advice-travelling-and-around-western-australia

 

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-04-26/wa-relaxes-stage-3-coronavirus-restrictions/12186258

Edited by onetrack
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Americans believe a meritocracy enables social mobility the problem being they don't actually have a meritocracy they have just been brainwashed into thinking they do, those with the best start get ahead and it continues through the generations, Trump is a great example he was born with a silver spoon up his arseand I believe that someone sat down and worked out that if he had put the original fortune given to him by his parents into a high interest account he would be worth more now than he is through his so called business success, he is a failure as a human being with little merit yet he is the president of the USA

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Interesting huh how fines are flat rate and not related to your means. As space says, this means the punishment is far worse if you are poor.

I'm gunna ask my MP why this is. Bet he doesn't reply.

 

 

Its the same for Taxes, the reason? keeps the money with those that have it.

In the UK Rural Landowners get paid for having Land and doing nothing with it..seriously the more land they have the more they get paid from the public purse just to leave it as a field and do nothing

It's socialism in reverse the poor subsidise the rich, it's always been this way.

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A lot of the inequality in the world is actually promoted by the underdogs. They really believe all the hogwash about others being superior and bow and scrape to them.

Proof of the above is the voting for the republicans in USA. They have a policy of not having any sort of handout to the under dog and those underdogs go along with it happily.

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Its the same for Taxes, the reason? keeps the money with those that have it.

In the UK Rural Landowners get paid for having Land and doing nothing with it..seriously the more land they have the more they get paid from the public purse just to leave it as a field and do nothing

It's socialism in reverse the poor subsidise the rich, it's always been this way.

 

It's not quite like that.. It has it's origins in the European Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), which actually hurt British farmers, Originally, to help ensure the mamma and pappa agribusinesses could survive and increasingly industrialising agricultural business, the EA came up with a policy to effectively keep agri commodity prices artifically high by paying farmers who could produce large quantities at lower prices from mot doing so that mum and dad farmers adhereing to centuries old, but inefficient traditions, would survive. The EU would also buy up "excess" production or order farmers who provided excess to dump the excess of remove capacity. An example was the European Wine Lake in the mod-2000's: Drowning in Europe's wine lake. If the market was allowed to act natually, many wine regions would have been wiped out.

 

Fast forward and there is still a CAP, but it is reformed. DEFRA administers the rural land grants and they are listed here: Farming and food grants and payments: Rural grants and payments - GOV.UK They are all tied to some conditions and mainteance upkeep. The Basic Payment Scheme requires at least 5% of land for farms over 5 hectares (our old small holding was 4.8 Hectares) to be actively managed to promote the ecology and, as an example, for a 10Ha farm, they say something like 2 acres is required to be managed that way (which means it must be a sliding scale) and that for arable farms, at least 2 crops are required.

 

I know a farmer who gets . £35K in various payments - the record keeping is onerous, the work he has to do is not as intensive as farming, but he says it would cost him at least that in lost revenue. What happened was that a lot of British Farms invested to modernise and scale up production and then the EU said no, can't do that and gave them money to not produce as much, or in the case of wine, juts bought the excess. However, over the years, the real value of the payments have reduced compared to what they could earn so when the pulled out capacity, it cost them a lot more in the long run.

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Here's the latest executive pay rort news. Fords top 6 executives took home $70M between them last (calendar) year - whilst Fords total annual profit was only $47M!

 

Then the execs have the hide to state, that they are doing planning for the long term, and that this pays off, over longer than a one-year period.

But then, the figures show that Ford has invested $50M in salary into its CEO since 2017 - and in the same period, Fords financial return on that $50M "investment", has been -26%!

 

Hopefully this pandemic will sort out this executive pay BS, and outright rorting. If Ford had paid its 6 top execs a more reasonable $1M a year salary each (still a LOT of money), Ford would have recorded $111M profit, a 236% increase!

 

https://www.freep.com/story/money/cars/ford/2020/04/27/ford-executives-salary-covid-19-strangles-economy/3027184001/

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Nev, I'm hoping this virus era sorts out the corporate rorting by way of excessive salaries for senior executives and CEO's. It is absolutely outrageous what these people demand and take home.

The largest percentage of senior executives and CEO's have been guilty of failing to meet targets, or place their companies on a better footing, with better employee morale, and with better products.

 

The largest percentage of them are guilty of sending manufacturing overseas (normally China), overseeing employee number reductions, and producing products of consistently lower quality.

But in the meantime, they have all engineered major salary increases at twice the rate of the general workforce - and they often have huge bonuses and other perks added to their already massive salaries.

 

I trust in the post-COVID-19 era, the boards of many companies will start to look a lot closer at what these people are really worth - and find they are not worth what they have been previously getting.

Gerry Harvey runs a huge retailing business operation and pays himself something like $500,000 a year. And even that figure is more than what our PM gets for running the country.

Edited by onetrack
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We talk about GST falling heavily on the general population, while being a pittance for the excessively well-paid. I often wonder how a person could spend these massive amounts they get over the course of an employment contract. Gerry Harvey might seem like a hero by limiting his salary, but don't forget that he also owns a great deal of the organisation, so while his pay cheque might say $500,000 I bet his other income is much more than that. Admittedly, Harvey has built his wealth through constant application of effort to reaching his goals. It's not as though he has parachuted into the Top Job merely with an MBA and connections.

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