Tuesday, November 8, 2011

T, 5:40pm


A. Cordero said...

ASIMO is quite an amazing step forward in creating a life-like robot. Although I find robots impressive I hope they do not replace human beings in the workplace. It is bad enough with SunPass express lanes replacing humans and automated machines also replacing human assistance. technology offers easier ways of performing certain tasks but is leaving the unemployment rate over the roof, how are people to support themselves and their families.

Anytime there is desperation for income crimes rises, violence escalates, therefore making the "ease" of things not very beneficial.

Technology has made our society lazy and somewhat ignorant having us rely on machines to do the thinking for us. Nonetheless impressive but ot stay within its limits....

A. Cordero said...

The wealth GAP:

We do not choose to be born, let alone what level of wealth we will be born into. Education on money management is important in all levels but especially for the poor. Ignorance is the key factor to keeping the poor in poverty. Although sometimes the limited means is reason for the debt accumulation not ignorance.

Government programs should assist in education and offering financial and medical help but in exchange for working or going to school. I for example, have a descent paying job and two children, on my income alone I cannot afford the cost of living and pay for daycare yet the government offers me no assistance, even though I am a tax paying citizen. Yet a person on welfare who is at home doing nothing has full daycare paid for, food stamps and medical insurance all to be a non-productive child bearing citizen, if they are home what do they need the daycare for? There shouldn’t be any free rides or people having children because the government will support them.

Yes credit cards are helpful but in the long run it is what keeps us in debt, school loans are ridiculously high amounts to be paid back on a minimum wage job, there should be assistance in getting educated in order to be a productive citizen and a tax payer rather than keeping people in a whole, it can be beneficial to the government as more interest is paid but there are more cases where no money is paid so no matter how high the interest or late fees if no money is being paid back to the government, what use is that account to the government.

Unfortunately from the beginning of time the law is there will be dirt poor, poor, middle class, rich and billionaires, but if we can reduce just a little bit of the poverty level this will reduce crime, depression, anxiety so many of the negative aspects in life.

People seem to think that athletes and actors are overpaid and should be obligated to help the poor, I think how we spend the money we make with our talents is our prerogative but they should be encouraged to help the needy, using millions and millions of dollars to have multiple cars, houses, yachts, all pleasures is just a greedy act and it is known that those who give will receive in abundance…..

On a personal note, when my daughter was born an attorney gave me a $100 check made out to my daughter’s name, only way to cash it was by opening an account for her, at 3 weeks old she had a bank account (I had my first bank acct at the age of 23), every Friday I put $5 in the account and deposit her birthday and Christmas monetary gifts into that account, she is a year and 2 weeks old and has more money in her account than I do in my savings. Had I not received that check she likely would still not have an account and that money would have been spent on nonsense. It just takes the first step to get things rolling in the right direction, if this money goes untouched until she gets to college she may purchase her first car with it or this money can help her avoid school loans… It just takes that first step; I don’t notice the $5 difference in my check.

Anonymous said...

The wealth and income matter:

My point of view on this matter is that wealth is something that is earned whether by yourself achievements or from your ancestors all though this country that was built for opportunity and freedom for all it is morally acceptable that the wealthy enjoy their fortunes and make it grow. We the so-called middle class people have not yet comprehend liquid money are risky, in addition; the lack of knowledge differencing wealth versus income, this is where we have failed. Many of us have a good source of income coming in but by not having the right source to make that income into solid money leaves us in the same class in which we first started or lower due too many debts, high interests, and wrong investments making them lose everything dragging them to poverty. It is immoral and wrongful that different individuals regardless of their financial class make outrageous moneys for the job they do just as well as others that do the same job for much less. In this great country of ours we are heading towards the upper class and the very poor. We are regressing back to the times of which Charles Dickens wrote about, “the best of times, and the worst of times” and if we continue in this path the middle class will be abolished and our economy collapse. We represent the greatest society in the planet and now we cannot control the unbelievable economical disaster we are experiencing. The power is in the hands of the people and “we the people” have the right to protest and elect those politicians that will work for the middle class and not for lobbyists from the three entities that I feel control our economy and those are insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies and the oil companies that make such astronomical and shameful profits. The wealthy have the power to invest and the poor have the burden of borrowing in order to get ahead. Credit rates are sky high. The rich get richer and poor find it difficult to keep up with their debts. The fact is that rich have the money to play with and increase their wealth while the poor are falling into poverty. Wealth inequality is the new cold war that we are currently facing in our nation.

Elizabeth Freda (5:40 class)

Victor Pedrosa said...

Since there is no short term solution to this problem, and it is a long term problem, I can think of one long term solution. It lies in education. The government of this great country should invest more, a lot more, on human capital. That is, the intellectual skills and talents of the younger generations, in other words, education, knowledge. It will only bring benefits to this country and its citizens for generations to come. Education in America is not taken seriously enough by the authorities. Costs for a higher education are ridiculous and only getting worse, along with the fierce competition in the work force. Basic education teachers’ salaries are not enough and the educational system is a joke compared to the other leading economies. Athletes get paid millions, and the ones who are responsible for teaching the fundamentals of life, the things that really matter, barely get financial recognition. Teachers should get paid more, which will encourage them to teach better, interest on student loans should cost a fraction of what it does, the educational system needs to be stricter, and it needs to be assessable to all. Basically, better educated people would make better decisions, the economy would grow with greater equality and in the end the government itself would reap more profit from a wealthier and more advanced economy. All is definitely easier said than done, but like drops of water could penetrate through the toughest stones, an idea could change the world.

Romell said...

Evidently the current status quo in America in terms of wealth distribution and economic inequality is horrendous. I believe that the American mindset needs to change in order to remedy this disparity. We live in a Capitalist economy and somehow this has created a reason for massive exploitation and apathy towards the working poor. Capitalism has given the rich an excuse to enslave the masses and ensure their subservience by hijacking our democracy. Politicians are held hostage by the need for exorbitant campaign financing. When corporations say deregulate, politicians ask how much. When the rich say get rid of the Consumer Protection Agency and the Environmental Protection Agency, politicians throw in the labor unions for good measure. Together, politicians and the very rich have stripped America of its middle class. I believe that if you are not rich in this country, then you are part of a class struggling in various degrees to make it from day to day
The American poor feel voiceless and depressed by an unfair socio-political situation. Politicians allowed the rich to laugh their way to the bank in a recession while the working poor put on another shackle of debt Millions lost their homes, their pensions, their livelihoods, but it was the rich who got rewarded by our political system. Somehow it’s alright to give the rich tax breaks and loop holes to get richer, but it’s wrong to help the poor. Something is horribly wrong with that picture. The rich need to rethink their notions of right and wrong. Such cruelty has historically provoked revolutions.

Davvin Hosein said...

The Wealth Gap:

In our economy today the wealth gap between the wealthy and the poor has grown a rediculous amount and there is no sign of it subsiding. We are all familiar with the saying "the rich get richer, the poor get poorer," but this is wrong. There are many reasons why this is true and we really need to carefully examine what is going on sow e can fix this problem.

Wealthy people are more likely to put their money into financial assets that yield revenue. Poor people do not do this, instead they buy things that they can immediatly consume. This is because the rate of savings of wealthy people is higher than the savings of poor people and since they are able to save more, they are also able to spend more and therefore increasing their assets or net wealth. Furthermore the wealthy also have lower credit costs so they are able to spend money that has lower interst rates. This makes it easy to invest money to make a profit because there is less risk. Basically the wealthy have it very easy to make money and the poor have it very hard.

The way we must counter act this is by educating our people so they can wake up and learn what is going on in the world around them. Another great way maybe the best way, would be to lower the taxes that people have to pay. We are paying tax to pay for people to eat in prison,I say let them starve. We pay tax to support corrupt politicians. We even pay tax to give people cell phones; for free! This simply does not make sense. Why am I working so hard, paying all these taxes, buying all of the tings I need, when someone sitting on their behind all day gets all of these things for free? We need some kind of change.

Davvin Hosein said...


ASIMO is an exquisite piece of technology. I do not however believe that he is state of the art or ground braking. Nonetheless it is an amazing piece of equipment that I can easily see advancing. ASIMO could be fighting our wars so that human beings do not have to loose their life in battle. If ASIMO advances anymore it could be quite scary what could happen. Governments pay big money towards the creation of new technology but we never really know what it is going to be used for.

ASIMO is definitly a huge jump foward in creating robots and he will probably serve as the foregrounds for creating future robots. The engineers who created him did a great job in putting him together. I like how solid his movements are and how his joints were created. It is simply a magnificent creation.

Anonymous said...

I believe taxing higher people with money is one of the best choices to improve the situation. It is truth wealthy people will not give up their current economic advantage easily. Eventually, they have to realize that if the middle class become poorer they (the rich) will start falling down with us too. The economy does not depend on rich people. It wasn’t like that in the Middle Ages either, they were just radical about the power wealth supposed. Now, the government has the power to stabilize society in many ways. The problem is that they have lost the monetary power. What happens when the government is dependent of the rich people? The laws and regulations suddenly seem to fit the higher class nicely. Law doesn’t (and it is not supposed to) change that much, but society is. Taking that in consideration, the government should always be active about protecting the lower classes. That’s why I believe taxing the rich is a good solution.
I would also like to mention the education factor. Nowadays, high school students are not required to be good thinkers. I have to say that standardized testing and lack of concern from some professors are the main responsible factors. If school is a procedure to prepare kids to confront the world, they should be able to learn about politics and economy as they do with math and language. Why is that some courses have more value than others? Are we all being trained to be the working class? Is the school system just another regulation in favor of reach people? And let’s face it. The ones with the money get the power.
That power permits them to keep and increase their money. That has to change.

Kevin Caro
5:40 T

olmis leyva said...

I believe attention paid to wealth inequality is a diversion from the real economic and moral questions that surround poverty. Concern about the gap feeds on that commonly felt class jealousy to which politicians respond with counter-productive laws, which do nothing for the poor or for the economy. Closing the gap should not be the goal, but rather we should try to lift our poorest, regardless of whether or not that closes or even opens the gap. I will suggest that just as government pays for elementary school, middle school and high school, the government should also pay for college and even advanced degrees. This would give the poor a better opportunity to lift themselves. The problem is not the gap, but poverty. The partial solution is not low end jobs, but education. I believe that every single topic we have discussed in this blog is tightly related to education. Access to a good education is the solution, I could say, for the 95 % of the problems American society is facing today.

Anonymous said...

The wealth gap is worsening as we speak, the economic blunder has made the gap between the younger and older generation much wider. The middle class is dwindling. Job growth is at a low and earnings have dropped. Foreclosure is at an all time high. The opportunities for Americans are scarce and it shows. This is evident because people cannot afford to live the lifestyle the used to. The assets that they attained are not adding up, they are at a stand still. Also because the economy has slowed, income does not come as easy in some cases or income does not go as far as it used to because of inflation. This situation is adding stress to households, people are now turning to their assets/wealth and selling them to expand their spending budget, making their wealth dwindle. It is a terrible cycle that will slowly begin to stop once the world economy comes to a solution with the banks and stock market. luciana manrique

Michely Hernandez said...

The normal idea of wealth is that those with careers either worked extremely hard & made the correct decisions or those who have inherited the blessings of their ancestors embrace their gains by enhancing them to the extreme. Unfortunately, not all are so worthy. I hear people speaking of the high, middle and low classes but in reality there really only 2 classes: high & low classes. Like many of other classmates mentioned: the richer seem to be getting richer & the poor poorer. But what people seem to not grasp is that all of this is an effect based on decisions by the government and major corporations. To begin with, limiting the resources in school only causes limitations in the youth to what they are only exposed too. It’s a chain reaction. It begins from the very beginning. The youth seem to not be obtaining as much support from the government as they should, as oppose to these major corporations that are violating thousands are laws but because they are bring billions of dollars into the states then it’s okay to oversee it. It’s understandable that money is required in order to proceed to be any one in this country which is one of the prime reasons to why the youth lacks wealth even after a degree is obtain… loans, a college graduate biggest nightmares. The government seems to have their spoon into so many civil issues but really do not get involve in many issues that are affecting the country. For example, the outrageous interest rates with credit cards are other reasons to why the poor are getting poorer. It’s unfortunate that hundreds are unemployed, so they are sure to fall under that debt. It seems that it is more difficult now a day to get wealthy or get out of debt as it is to have $10,000 in the bank. It is extremely unfair for the working class to be destined to that type of future but that something that cannot be changed overnight and as long as you have major food, pharmaceutical, oil, & distributions under paying their employees as they reek in their gains, the poverty and debt will only grow. Regulations need to be made against these major companies instead of being against with the poor.

Anonymous said...

I believe expert backed legislation should be one of the first actions that should be taken to lessen the growth of a wealth gap of this proportion. What I mean by expert backed legislation is a panel of leading economists should be assembled and have them come up with a plan (by voting or some other system) backed by numbers (that can be testing for effectiveness) that can help close the wealth gap, especially the wealth gap of the poor. We need to be able to gauge how effective this crucial financial laws/legislation is if we are ever going to find something that works long term without the privileged creating and finding loopholes that allows them to hoard assets and profits. Piggy backing on my last post, I pointed out nothing is going to change until we separate money and politics…which has led to an unprecedented amount of corruption in the government. Just in the past couple of days it has come to light that Rep. Spencer Bachus used the knowledge he gained in his position to make trades, but more importantly, there is a loophole that makes insider trader rules not apply to Capitol Hill. The article is here http://www.businessinsider.com/the-congress-insider-trading-scandal-is-a-disgrace-rep-spencer-bachus-should-resign-immediately-2011-11. I think talking about fixing the wealth gap is senseless until we fix congress; otherwise nothing is going to change.

-Robert Brown

Taryn Timmons said...

Growing up as a “middle class” American I am very familiar with the financial crisis my family has been faced with. I was raised by a single mother raising two children who worked herself through college while raising the both of us. Divorcing my father with no settlement and only the debt he left us with, she worked her way through college only putting herself into more debt with student loans. Working as an RN, my mother has been able to support us to the best of her ability, but by putting the both of us through school and raising us the best she could, forced us to go bankrupt and losing our home. Because of the income that my mother began to make after graduating, she was not longer able to rely on the governments help with food stamps, medical insurance, or welfare. Whereas people who are just coming into our country or unemployed indolent individuals are provided this with no questions asked. Now that I am an adult, I am working full time to put myself through college and collecting my own debt, while my sister collects her student loans from law school, only to not have any job opportunities to help her relieve her financial situation. Also because of the fact that my mother has fallen into bankruptcy, I no longer have a co-signer for student loans and I am forced to work fulltime as I continue my education. The best solution that I can come up with to consolidate my own personal debt without facing bankruptcy would be to live very frugally only hoping that once I graduate that I am able to find a job. As my family falls into more debt, the wealthy seem to collect as much interest as we spend. Although, taxing the more fortunate to help “middle class” America might be a reasonable solution, it is where the money would be dispersed that concerns me. There are many single parent families in need of help that are being looked over. I can only hope that by furthering my education, my independent financial state will differ from what my mothers has become so that I can not only save myself but my family from the brink of poverty.

Anonymous said...

Alan C.

The situation in the United States is somehow similar to that in the rest of the world. Rich people have more money and keep increasing their resources while middle and lower class struggle to make it everyday. The solutions given as alternatives would work in a scenario where the needs of many were a priority over the needs of a few. However, in the society we live in United States the 1% of society is the one leading the country.

As described in the article rich people have the knowledge, culture and resources to multiply their money and increase their wealth by investing in the stock market, certificates of deposit and other investment vehicles. People in middle and lower classes may have the knowledge to apply this practices too but without the adequate resources, it becomes impossible.

Finally, I think that rich people have the power to take the decisions in this country, while this situation stays this way is improbable that any big change can be done. If I had to choose one change it would have to do with the profit of big companies which driven by the idea of endless profit wont stop to anything to keep getting more money, even if it means firing United State workers or ruining communities.

Luis amoretti said...

My point of view when considering the wealthy is them always being the first to recieve aid, the fact that they have money means they have the ability to afford the high bills. What should be happening? Government should begin with correting what is messed up economically, and how it is affecting everyone . Crimes, pollution, uneducated youth is only hurting the world. so what needs to happen, educate the generation about how our governments corrupt and what money has done to man. Government should help everyone in need. In fact everyone should should be helping everyone else.

Fernando Fragoso said...

As history shows time and time again, the rich get’s richer while the poor get’s poorer. It’s a fact that if raised in a rich family that one is open to the opportunities that is open to you when money is not an issue. With money not being a problem, one can live in a good environment, tend the best school with a top notch education leading to higher success in a given career that would continue to prosper and thus increase ones standing finically. Those that are rich have more opportunity to double up their money and thus, creating long chains of wealth for their next generation and so on. This can also be seen in other ways hard work equals honest pay. However this is not always the case.
Not being in the same financial statue as say some one that is raised with money would go in a different bath (may not always be the case). Someone in a financial bind would tend to get jobs at a young age while balancing their education on the side. Another factory would be the government taxing. The middle to lower class gets taxed while the rich don’t.
This goes back to Bushed “trickle-down economics” which cases show could work in a control (regulated) setting ( giving money to the rich thus opening more jobs, and stimulating the economy). But again as history shows us…the rich hordes their riches and gives nothing to the needy. Thus, making the economy suffer.
I say Government regulation needs to be set in motion to fix this economical unbalance. Tax the rich, make it fair for all classes.