Discussion in 'Debate Corner' started by Haze is Dreamin', Sep 26, 2007.
Yes or no
If by America you mean the plutocracy, then no.
If by America you mean the poor and lower middle class, then possibly.
Though Walmart does give extremely low cost goods to the consumer and they make a fortune doing it, the same with Google and Amazon.
The telecommunications, drug, and oil companies can shove it though! (unless I end up heading one in which case $$$$$$$$$_________$$$$$$$$ )
Definitely. Hell, you can't even run for a major office anymore without a corporation's support.
No, it definitely is killing America. It's corrupting the election process (how much more corrupt can it get?) and the judicial process.
Wal-Mart is a drain on the economy.
Wal-Mart gives low prices at the cost of American jobs. It hurts the economy way more than it helps.
Well I guess I am kind of biased being in business school and all.
But that also means I know more about business and the economy than all of you.
Or at least I should.
Well, Wal-Mart makes money for itself. Unfortuneately, it doesn't help the economy much otherwise.
I'd say so. With outsourcing and downsizing, and not to mention profiting off the cheaper labor of illegal immigrants. Some of these companies are just a blight for average citizens.
no, i think corporate greed built the USA and is the driving force behind the USA's superpower status
After reading Stiglitz, I can only say "Yes".
This ship isn't sinking; it's already a submarine.
I wouldn't go that far but greed is the major flaw of capitalism. And it clearly shows up in America.
Corporate greed is killing the world with the advent of globalization. We outsource jobs to areas of cheap labor and pollute their environment instead of our own (since our laws are stricter). Same thing with laborer's rights. Then the products are brought back to this country to be sold to a populace who can no longer afford them because their former jobs have been relocated overseas. European nations make some attempt to protect their citizens, but they are inherently more "social oriented" since most of those countries also have a national health plan that provides at the very least primary health care.
The balancing act will be difficult. We have great technology break-throughs (such as mag-lev) that aren't followed up because a corporation's fear of change and elimination of their market (car manufacturers, railroads (although not so powerful anymore!!), oil companies, etc) and then again, big pharmaceutical companies gouge the public for huge profits by lobbying for laws to protect the abnormally high prices they charge that are unique to this country. In the meantime, their greed is killing their marketplace. Not real far-sighted, are they.
Theory, maybe, but not necessarily reality. Reality is never as pure as theory. Plus, with the number of members on this forum, do you really think you are that unique?
Greed is not a flaw. It is an asset. Extreme greed, on the other hand, is very dangerous.
Greed in moderation leeds to progress, but in extreme it leads to conservatism and stagnation.
Anyway. A corporation is a necessary parasite. It provides, but it also takes. The problem with corporations is that they stand above national borders in a way that humans do not do. They have the money and the power to basically do whatever.
As an example i will use a fictional corporation called X-Corp. If X-Corp needs cheap labour for producion they can move their production to a country with low wages and there produce whatever they need and sell wherever they want. Globalisation. They find the cheapest place to get what they want, and then they sell that product elsewhere.
On the other hand. I'm sitting here with a DVD. And for some reason, this DVD wouldn't play on a DVD player in the US (i'm in Sweden). This means that while there are a crapload of legal (non-bootleg) DVDs produced in China etc i can't actually go there to buy cheap movies, or order from there. There's a barrier in the way called Region Coding.
The "official" reason for the existance of RC is to allow the movie companies to coordinate movie releases so they can focus marketing on one region at a time.
But maybe not without intention, the region coding also prevents YOU and ME from utilizing globalisation for your own ends. To make matters worse, there are LAWS against removing the region coding in many countries. Why do you think this is?
Because corporations want to rape low-wage countries to make cheap money, yet they don't want YOU to be able to pick where and for WHAT PRICE you buy your movies. They want globalisation for themselves because if you coud buy cheap as well, they'd lose their fat margins.
Note one thing: It's not really the corporations who are greedy, but the stockholders who pressure them into maximizing profits. And nearly half of American households participate in the stock market. It's a downward spiral, really.
The most glaring example of a similar mechanism is Wal-Mart. Where do you think it's employees go shopping, with their laughably low wages? That's right, Wal-Mart, because it's the cheapest. And thus their own consumer choices validate their economic position.
I'm not even going to get started on the political campaign financing system...
Is it killing it? No, it hasn't gotten that far. Is it damaging it? Well, yes. Corporate greed tends to do that.
But it's the 'me first, me always' attitude that's slowly choking it to death- both America and the basic American dream. People are so focused on the 'me' aspect that they don't realise that working to create a better society helps them in return. Keeping Americans employed = more money going into the economy = things are better. And when employing overseas, giving them decent wages and holding good enviornmental standards not only helps the world as a whole, it makes you look like less of a douche.
Corporate greed isn't killing America, but it certainly isn't helping. If it keeps up for another decade or so, things will be worse off.
I thought that regular americans had better education in economics than brazilians (being the world's richest country, having the better econ schools, etc). Well, I guess I was wrong.
Heh, well, to that extent, I wouldn't call the country anything other than a greed empire, or the greed capital of the world.
As for killing, I would even say yes, it literally is. Genetically modified foods now anybody? Do a little research on Monsanto corporation. Better yet, dig up the documentary "The Future Of Food", see what's being done (and done away with) in the name of more money.
Not all genetically modified food is bad, hell you probably eat gene modified food as it is and don't even know it.
Progress must always be tempered least it run wild but at the same time you can't stop progress and gene modified crops are the future.
America, and Americans still do things simply to help; so it's not a complete weck yet. And frankly I think you do the majority of Americans a disservice by painting with such a wide brush. Natural and man man diaster after diaster people in America have donated food, time, service what ever they could and some even more then that. It's not as bad as you think it is, though neither is it all sunshine and roses.
Thanks to the families behind those corporations, yes.
A documentary on children of the insanely rich. Watch this and just from the attitudes of some of them, it's apparent things aren't going to change for a while.
The hemp plant, where marijuana comes from, is very very useful. The seeds are very nutritional and all and can help with weight loss. The seeds can also be used to create a plastic that is ten times stronger than steel. It was supposed to be used in the original car design by Henry Ford. It can be made into paper and is very recyclable. And it has high amounts of energy that can be used in cars. It grows within 2 weeks so there is an abundant supply. But the fact is, people care more about their money than the world. Billionares want to stay billionares. They r a bunch of snobby c*** sucking b****es.
Do you know what's in our air, water, soil, food, even our households anymore? Science hasn't even mapped out all of the long-term effects of many of these chemicals on the human body. Scientific expeditions have even found traces of these substances in places on this planet where humans have never been known to have set foot before, it's permeated that much of the Earth.
Cancer? Freak allergies? Strange new diseases? Yet how many people actually see the connection between their environment and their suffering? It's all been sold to us that smoothly, even as dirty secrets and recalls roll out every year on things deemed "safe" in their marketing campaigns.
Though personally, I'm not going to freak out and go vegan or anything that extreme, I do tend to let new things hang around for a while, sniff the air first, before deciding to join in.
^^; the purpose of business is to make money... i know it would be great if they really cared about the people who drive their cars but really its about maximizing revenue. I am sure though if their was a market for the super cars you are suggesting and that it would produce more revenue then selling what they are selling now they would gladly change.
the real problem isn't the corporations but in the consumer, if the consumer wanted safer cars and were willing to pay the price then they would be produced.
That must be the reason why life expectancy is decreasing...
Oh no, wait, life expectancy is actually increasing.
Increasing for whom?
Those lucky enough to be in a 1st world country like the Britian? What about the rest of the world?
That's great expect for all the misinformation the corpations put out, all the money they feed the goverment and how they recklessly pollute the enviroment (yes those are generalizations but corpations in general they hold up well).
Amazing how many uneducated people post like they know all about economics systems and business.
To think that only the US is the center for corporate greed is a fallacy in and of itself, not to mention your definition of "greed."
While I won't say that there is no greed (there is), labeling every single "major" corporation as such is inane. Do any of you even know what an Balance Sheet or Income Statement is? How about shareholder value? Revenues? Net income? Come on people, don't make your opinions just to fit in.
Amazing how you seem to feel you're the only one fit to have an opnion.
i think that greed is what drives our economy.... each person is greedy, but because of the magic of money, we all end up having to help each other to help ourselves
Opinions are like assholes, everyone has one and they all stink.
Except for mine.
However, you should actually put a counter-argument forth instead of just assuming things.
Lol nice highly overused quote.
And nice ego.
Assuming what? You showed early on in this thread that you think simply because you're in business school that makes your opnion better (when in fact if anything it's probably just more baised). I personally find that stupid especially because this isn't about the specific ins and outs of business but about corparate greed and the need to make as much money as possible.
Look at Enron, look at how the pharmiological corps play the patient game, look at the oil corps making record profits each year for the past several years, and so on.
They are also increasing. I happen to live in a third world country so maybe I know what I'm talking about.
The only exception is sub-saharan Africa, but that is more because of AIDS than any other thing.
Yes, although it's not nearly as bad as a few decades ago. Lower class Americans have more of a voice now than before, so it will only be a matter of years before the unofficial aristocracy loses even more power.
You're the one wanting to start an argument, but unfortunately I don't dig arguments so I will simply use another overused quote.
"Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me."
I said "amazing how many uneducated people post like they know all about economics systems and business" and that I "should no more because I am in business school" because there are a hell of a lot of posts that are selectively choosing their evidence. Also, since I am in business school I am familiar with how corporations operate, their motivations, and the economic forces at work. I don't at all imply that I am the only one here with such knowledge, but it does give me a platform from which I can discuss my views.
Give me proof that America is being "destroyed" by corporate "greed." If that greed does anything, it has allowed our country to have the highest GDP in the world and to become the world's sole superpower.
Trust me if I was trying to insult you, you'd know it. That was nothing compared to what I'd say if I was trying to insult you.
Actually you're right, I found what you posted to be very demeaning and very much a stroking of your ego, not to mention most of it wasn't even revelent to this topic. What you may or may not have been formally schooled in has little bearing in a topic unless it's revelent and I do not see business school giving your opnion more or less validity, if you beg to differ show me why I'm wrong. Don't just claim it.
Yes you did, rather you meant to or not you did imply that because you know x you're more qualified then anyone else to give thier opnion. You seem intelligent and certainly are well written but your posts also make you seem egotisical.
Enron and those like it aren't proof? You can play with semantics all you want but Enron did exactly what any corpation that survives does, it maximized it's profits. And don't make claims you can't back up, prove that greed did what you said it did.
Now you're playing semantics, what's the difference between dihydrogen monooxide and water? (there is no difference) You can dress it up how you want, but profits are not everything there are other factors too. If profits were everything why not abolish Unions? And let's get rid of the Clean Air and Water act because they cut into profits too; only that's not what people want.
Making money is fine, but unrestrained, uncontrolled greed is harmful and corperations more and more have shown that they can't restrain themselves. And I'd like to clear something up, when you have a monoply on a vitial resource and start making record profits and prices go up, up and up; that at the very least is sucpicuos, and deserves more looking into. What you were saying mischaracterized my point because it's the fact that they're making record prices as price increases.
So Enron wasn't a corperation? Is that what you're telling me? Becuase that would raise sticking your head in the sand to new levels.
Enron was a corperation, a greedy one at that and the CEO almost got away with it.
As for the pharmological companies, do you even know what I'm talking about? Here let me just say it, a company discovers drug X now per patent laws they patent it and sell it at a price to make up thier research costs. However patents only last so long, and after that any one can make it, that way you reward people for thier work but don't give them a complete and total monoply. However what the pharmological companies do is when a patent comes due they take that drug and either find a new use for it, or slightly change the formula. Which means they can now repatent what is essentially the same bloody thing. Now tell me how is that not greedy?
short answer? yes
Seriously, why even say that? Are you 15? (no offense to the intelligent 15 year-olds)
"If I wanted to insult you, trust me you would know it."
Come on. The Internet is not that serious.
If you even get into the realm of starting that then I will just laugh and ignore you. Wouldn't be the first time I meant such a person online.
Listen, if I insulted you I am sorry. Feel better? I stated my opinion a little to strongly and I rescind it. Now can we stop the bickering?
But it is relevant because this is a matter of business and what one classifies as greedy is not always universal in scope.
You cannot tell me that formal schooling does not give one slightly more credibility than say Joe Schmoe on the street.
Whose opinion would I trust more on global warming: a random person off the street or a climatologist?
But I do agree with you that degrees and formal schooling do not make one the master of a subject and give them the right to flaunt it (which I guess I did, and I am sorry). But still, it's hard not to overreact when everyone else around is acting like they are 100% positive that that is the way things are.
Yeah, I get carried away. Sorry.
So how is that "destroying" America? Please explain it and I will take it into consideration.
Enron's problem wasn't profit-maximization, it was downright dirty accounting and padding revenues to give a false appearance of extreme profits which caused many people to invest a lot of money in them. When it turned out they lied and had a lot of debt their house-of-cards crumbled and share prices plummeted. The company and many investors lost everything.
That padding of revenues to bring in more equity itself is proof that the execs there were greedy. But they paid the price and they are not representative of the average corporation (in regards to the fraudulent accounting and greed).
Okay, okay. I will agree with you on the fact that maximizing shareholder value and maximizing profits is greed because it is the maximization of wealth. I will ignore the subtler aspects of greed for this purpose.
But how is that destroying America? You have yet to explain that.
A price increase on some goods is hardly destroying the country. Unless you have evidence about how massive emigrations are occurring and how tens of millions of families have been reduced to absolute poverty due to $3.00 gas.
And how do you suggest we restrain certain corporations revenues without becoming endangering capitalist values for the rest of the country? Should we abandon capitalism? What about all the checks and laws regarding monopolies already?
Okay I get your point. But:
a.) That does not represent the entirety of corporations (very few actually).
b.) HOW IS THAT DESTROYING AMERICA?!
I might end up actually agreeing with you if you can clearly sum up those two questions.
You know what I think is funny? You guys are blaming shit on Wal-mart while it HELPS MORE THEN IT HURTS. Wal-mart and all that shit from China helps keep inflation in check. Example without Walmart/all the cheap ass shit from China: You walk into a regular daily store. The item X costs 15 dollars. You think it is vastly overpriced for an item X thus you go to another store. That one costs 20 dollars. After searching 25 different stores, you find out that the cheapest for item X is 12 dollars which is still overpriced for such a simple item.
Now insert Wal-mart and all the crap we are buying from China: You go into a store looking for item X. The item X costs 13 dollars. It is still overpriced for such an item. Thus you went into Wal-mart. Item X is only 5 dollars due to the greed in America harming China (way way way more then us, seeing how in 20 years, they are polluting more then us, their enviroment is majorly fucked with small amounts of acceptable water and air pollution, and their workers, while getting 8x more then they used to, is still shit poor seeing how most of them less then US dollar a month.) and the fact Wal-mart is a shitty place for work for because of the low wages.
This part is only an assumption: most of Americans do not know or do not care about Wal-marts low wages because most of us don't work there. Thus, Wal-mart thrives, the costumers in America thrives, and the smaller businesses would have to lower their prices or they get fucked in the dog eat dog world of business.
I wouldn't exactly say it's destroying America (whatever this expression means without context). I do believe it hurts your democracy though, and in a broader perspective, society itself.
First off, I'm going to repeat myself, the problem doesn't lie within the corporations themselves, who are merely struggling to meet the requirements the shareholders put forth.
Second, I'd be especially concerned about the practices of big businesses (such as corporation) in a country with such an overblown lobby system, and where the majority of political campaign funding is supplied by corporations. This is a situation that naturally promotes corruption and conflicts of interest within the representatives (should one represent the interests of those, who have voted for him, or the ones who have supplied the funds for his campaign?).
Furthermore, the social costs of unregulated capitalism are pretty big. Businesses that strive to maximize their net income don't have the ability to fulfill any other role within society. They just exploit whatever resource they have at their disposal - this accounts for the natural enviroment, as well as their own workers. Americans are one of the worlds most stressed out developed nation, with the levels steadily rising during the last few years. It wouldn't be half bad if living standards uniformly increased as an effect of their work, but the wealth disparsity just keeps getting bigger and bigger, despite the impressive GDP.
Well, these are the basics. I'll elaborate on any point, if needed.
I expect someone that studies in a business school or that studies economics to have more knowledge on subjects like this than the average joe.
That would not make that person right about everything just because of that (not even the world's greatest economist is right about everything), but that person would still have more knowledge than others.
Who are you speaking to? Put in a @ if you are replying to someone who's post is way back and simply as a way to address people.
As I think we started off wrong and we both are a bit strongly opnionated (and there's nothing wrong with that) how about we just stick to these 2 questions and forget about the earlier part between me and you as I probably came off a little too strong myself.
Response to a):
In the end there are few corporations, you peel back the layers of who owns who and so on and there aren't many corporations I think we could agree with that?
Now then as a rule it's hard to know exactly what goes on in each corporation and for a long time there was some degree of trust I'd say about what actually went on. However over the last 10 years (if not longer) there's been no good news about corperations. What you see is how the CEO either cheated legally or illegally to maximaze his profits and in the process screwed the workers or how corperations took shortcuts with enviromental laws, balantly ignoring them to make more money or how corperations have exploited political finacinig laws and so on.
So when all you see is corperation after corperation getting caught doing illegal or borderline ethical pratices what are you going to conclude? You're right that I can't completely prove all corperations are bad but to borrow an old saying 'fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me'.
reponse to b:
None of these things are helpful to America at all and the case of the pharmological corps has a direct impact on the prices we Americans pay for prescription drugs becuase name brand will alway cost alot more then generic even though they largely are the same thing.
More over there's only so much money and when you have those in the 1-5% of the most wealth hoarding more money how does that help our economy? How does it help America to have it's workers basically exploited, or to have badly overpriced drugs or have our energy companies gouge us? Or have the enviroment ruined because it's cheaper to dump toxic waste where ever they damn well please then either deny it or take out 1% of their profits to pay for the fines? Or have our election system so badly influenced that it seems it will be a long time before anything changes?
I'm much more a fan of captialism then any other system and it's done great things for America but any system has it's flaws and the flaw of captialism is extreme, unrestrained greed. Something we've seen more and more in the last 10 years of in corporations.
Do you even know what Wal-Mart does? I went to college in a small town in the middle of America and the first year I was there they put in a Wal-Mart, over the next 3 years they slowly squeezed out all the small business then opened a new wal-mart 30 miles away. They then squeezed out all the small places there and guess what? Closed the first place and laid everyone off.
Wal-Mart is a perfect example of corperate greed and thier employee practices which I've learned about first hand are horrible and I refuse to buy from them. They're parasitic leeches that have denied employee's a union, breaks at tiimes and more then that.
Detonator_Fan, regardless this isn't about the practical applications of businesses, this has nothing to do with shares, or tax forms or anything like that. Thus business school has nothing to do with this (unless you can show how as you're making the claim).
Wal-Mart may provide low cost good, however they ruin the job sector by providing low-paying jobs with little or no health coverage. Wal-Mart idea of health coverage is for the employee to sign up for welfare.
This Sesshoumaru has an associate whose mother work for a major microchip company before it out sourced it's main production plant overseas to China. According to the mother, who trained workers at the plant, the conditions that they work in are not safe for both the workers and the products. The employees were not given proper safety equipment such as eye protection, anti-static scrubs and mask for dust inhilation. Workers did not go home, however, they stated in dormatories alongside the plant and worked as many as 14 hours in a single work day and only returned to their families during holidays.
Did this one mention they were paid less than 25% of their American equivilants?
Greed has been killing humankind since like...forever
Hell look at the best 6 months and the almost 100 recalls from China if you don't believe that and then tell me out sourcing is so good.
There is in-country out-sourcing, also.
Why do you think fast food chains, restaurants and factories hire illegal immigrants?
That's hardly fair seeing how China is like the manifestation of greed. If you use the same thing about out sourcing by Japan or some other country which practices safer products and do not value quanity over quality. As for Walmart choking all the small businesses, the cheap prices also help keep the god damn inflation low. I stated that it would:
"the smaller businesses would have to lower their prices or they get fucked in the dog eat dog world of business."
The smaller businesses, the local businesses, provide better jobs, but they offer higher prices which promotes inflation. If inflation runs too high, our entire economy gets fucked, not just worker rights as in Walmart. I know full well what Walmart does: they have gone to lengths as to hire guards to shoot protestors, stopped worker unions by force or firing, have phone lines installed just to warn the management of a possibility of an union, etc. I haven't heard your story before, but it is nothing too surprising. However, overrall, it helps our economy significantly more then it hurts. This hard to swallow cure is better then the cancer.
Michael Moore- Sicko
Private health insurance is responsible for many deaths, all to save money. Watch the documentary yourself.
I think it was quite clear that it was not directed to you.
Well, at least in my country the guys in business schools have to study some economics, economic history, sociology, etc. So I would expect them to have a better knowledge about this kind of issues than an average joe, although they probably have less knowledge than a well trained economist.
And this kind of knowledge can make all the difference in the policies that someone supports. Maybe there is some division among economists, but either Robert Lucas (a Chicago economist) or Paul Krugman (a Princeton economist) would prescript better policies (or make a better analysis or prediction) than the average joe or one of those marxists kids in high school.
Separate names with a comma.