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posted by janrinok on Monday December 15 2014, @03:58PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the chasing-the-vanishing-jobs? dept.

Binyamin Appelbaum writes at the NYT that the share of prime-age men — those 25 to 54 years old — who are not working has more than tripled since the late 1960s, to 16 percent as many men have decided that low-wage work will not improve their lives, in part because deep changes in American society have made it easier for them to live without working. These changes include the availability of federal disability benefits; the decline of marriage, which means fewer men provide for children; and the rise of the Internet, which has reduced the isolation of unemployment. Technology has made unemployment less lonely says Tyler Cowen, an economist at George Mason University, who argues that the Internet allows men to entertain themselves and find friends and sexual partners at a much lower cost than did previous generations. Perhaps most important, it has become harder for men to find higher-paying jobs as foreign competition and technological advances have eliminated many of the jobs open to high school graduates. The trend was pushed to new heights by the last recession, with 20 percent of prime-age men not working in 2009 before partly receding. But the recovery is unlikely to be complete. "Like turtles flipped onto their backs, many people who stop working struggle to get back on their feet," writes Appelbaum. "Some people take years to return to the work force, and others never do "

A study published in October by scholars at the American Enterprise Institute and the Institute for Family Studies estimated that 37 percent of the decline in male employment since 1979 can be explained by this retreat from marriage and fatherhood (PDF). “When the legal, entry-level economy isn’t providing a wage that allows someone a convincing and realistic option to become an adult — to go out and get married and form a household — it demoralizes them and shunts them into illegal economies,” says Philippe Bourgois, an anthropologist who has studied the lives of young men in urban areas. “It’s not a choice that has made them happy. They would much rather be adults in a respectful job that pays them and promises them benefits.”

Related Stories

American Workers Struggle to Keep Up with Robots and AI 34 comments

Claire Cain Miller writes at the NYT that economists long argued that, just as buggy-makers gave way to car factories, technology used to create as many jobs as it destroyed. But now there is deep uncertainty about whether the pattern will continue, as two trends are interacting. First, artificial intelligence has become vastly more sophisticated in a short time, with machines now able to learn, not just follow programmed instructions, and to respond to human language and movement. At the same time, the American work force has gained skills at a slower rate than in the past — and at a slower rate than in many other countries. Self-driving vehicles are an example of the crosscurrents. Autonomous cars could put truck and taxi drivers out of work — or they could enable drivers to be more productive during the time they used to spend driving, which could earn them more money. But for the happier outcome to happen, the drivers would need the skills to do new types of jobs.

When the University of Chicago asked a panel of leading economists about automation, 76 percent agreed that it had not historically decreased employment. But when asked about the more recent past, they were less sanguine. About 33 percent said technology was a central reason that median wages had been stagnant over the past decade, 20 percent said it was not and 29 percent were unsure. Perhaps the most worrisome development is how poorly the job market is already functioning for many workers. More than 16 percent of men between the ages of 25 and 54 are not working, up from 5 percent in the late 1960s; 30 percent of women in this age group are not working, up from 25 percent in the late 1990s. For those who are working, wage growth has been weak, while corporate profits have surged. “We’re going to enter a world in which there’s more wealth and less need to work,” says Erik Brynjolfsson. “That should be good news. But if we just put it on autopilot, there’s no guarantee this will work out.”

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  • (Score: 3, Funny) by middlemen on Monday December 15 2014, @04:01PM

    by middlemen (504) on Monday December 15 2014, @04:01PM (#126174) Homepage

    is the invisible cloak finally here ?

    how are fat american men vanishing otherwise ?

    • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday December 15 2014, @04:23PM

      by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 15 2014, @04:23PM (#126181)

      Speaking of fat,

      These changes include the availability of federal disability benefits

      I wonder how much of a relationship exists between obesity and disability benefits.

      You can't take a culture from 10% obesity to 50% obesity in a couple decades without some fallout, like, say, exploding disability recipients.

      Also this is "old news" and something hashed out on other sites is FEDERAL disability is just the long term version of STATE unemployment, in practice. So states have enormous financial pressure to move people off state unemployment and onto federal disability.

  • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @04:02PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @04:02PM (#126175)

    I'll be sure to forward the news to hughpickens.com.

    • (Score: 1, Troll) by mtrycz on Monday December 15 2014, @04:31PM

      by mtrycz (60) on Monday December 15 2014, @04:31PM (#126188)

      I, for one, stand for Hugh Pickens submissions.
      The writing quality is world class, and the subjects quite insightful. Also, lots of variety.

      --
      In capitalist America, ads view YOU!
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @04:54PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @04:54PM (#126201)

        I concur. To the GP: how bout we focus our attention to this web site?

      • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:05PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:05PM (#126207)

        Mod +5 Funny.

        Seriously though, this is easily the shittiest article I have seen on SN. Of course Hugh Pickens occupies 8 of the 10 top spots in this category. (Bennett Hasselton has the other 2.)

        As far as this goes; standard sexist baiting bullshit. How dare men not spend every waking moment of their lives making some woman a pile of money so they can sit on their ass at home? Why are women not just as insulted by sexist articles like this as men?

        I got news for you, women. If you want someone to make you a bunch of money, try GETTING A FUCKING JOB.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @06:56PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @06:56PM (#126256)

        HP does do quality submissions, but I thought he deserved a little s*** about the clickbaitish title of this one.

        -GP

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Jeremiah Cornelius on Monday December 15 2014, @04:27PM

    by Jeremiah Cornelius (2785) on Monday December 15 2014, @04:27PM (#126184) Journal

    There is a lot of snark that can be directed at the notion of "inexpensive sexual partners" and the rise of free porn streaming sites.

     

    I'll leave it for someone else to make that cheap shot.

     

    Seriously, the very high number of "fail to launch" youth after high-school is pretty noticeable among my colleagues and neighbors. I understand that this is merely anecdotal. There are plenty of "Princeton or Dartmouth on a scholarship" stories around me, too. Nonetheless, I never witnessed this number in earlier decades, among the children of doctors, engineers and finance professionals.

     

    I believe you cannot view any element in isolation for a comprehensive conclusion - but this is one more facet cut into the face of the "Jewel-of-Despair", that is our present-day culture and society. This is the decadence - long rotten decline - of the permanence we built into our enclosing institutions, neglecting to replenish any values these were meant to establish and nurture.

     

    This is a dead society. It's aims are superficial while its means of enablement are superhuman. There is little place for humanity in its machineries, and disengagement is a natural response.

     

    --
    You're betting on the pantomime horse...
    • (Score: 1, Redundant) by dcollins on Monday December 15 2014, @05:22PM

      by dcollins (1168) on Monday December 15 2014, @05:22PM (#126216) Homepage

      Yeah, I pretty much agree with that. Well said.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by pnkwarhall on Monday December 15 2014, @08:17PM

      by pnkwarhall (4558) on Monday December 15 2014, @08:17PM (#126284)

      It's aims are superficial while its means of enablement are superhuman.

      IMO this is a remarkably succinct summary of our current situation.

      --
      Lift Yr Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @08:28PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @08:28PM (#126287)

        Means of enablement?

        Meaning social security programs?
        Or?

        • (Score: 2) by Jeremiah Cornelius on Monday December 15 2014, @08:32PM

          by Jeremiah Cornelius (2785) on Monday December 15 2014, @08:32PM (#126291) Journal

          Technologies and application of our will to the external world.

          --
          You're betting on the pantomime horse...
          • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:14PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:14PM (#126306)

            Ahh. I agree.
            My solution has been to go small. Focus on your community.
            I live in a small town so it is actually a satisfying way to live.

            • (Score: 2) by pnkwarhall on Monday December 15 2014, @10:13PM

              by pnkwarhall (4558) on Monday December 15 2014, @10:13PM (#126326)

              More and more, this is seeming like the ONLY realistic solution, for me and mine.

              --
              Lift Yr Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven
    • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:49PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:49PM (#126320)

      "Failure to launch" into the adult world of marital strife, divorce and child-support payments - there's worse that one could do. Plus, what are your children going to do when they become adults? We can see right now that the number of good jobs are declining year to year. A century ago society was at a similar crossroads - medicine made it possible to practically guarantee survival through childhood, and it took two wars to bring headcount down to a level that we can now look nostalgic at those times when everybody had a good job.

      There are too many people around to be useful already; I'd rather the population were lowered by family fatigue as seen in western societies now, than having millions of people used as cannon fodder.

      • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday December 16 2014, @11:19AM

        by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday December 16 2014, @11:19AM (#126453) Journal

        and it took two wars to bring headcount down to a level that we can now look nostalgic at those times when everybody had a good job.

        Didn't happen that way in the US. The US's population grew through both wars.

        There are too many people around to be useful already; I'd rather the population were lowered by family fatigue as seen in western societies now, than having millions of people used as cannon fodder.

        There's a better solution. Change the economic and societal environment so that it's easier to employ people. Most of the world doesn't have any problems creating jobs.

  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by Rivenaleem on Monday December 15 2014, @04:29PM

    by Rivenaleem (3400) on Monday December 15 2014, @04:29PM (#126185)

    So these men who are unemployed, sit at home with the Internet, do not get married or have children will disappear from the gene pool over a few generations. Seems like it is only a short term problem (from a civilisational point of view).

    Is this not just evolution in action? It will take time, but I have hope that your average female will not see these men as attractive breeding partners and whatever gene expression that leads to these people will dwindle and disappear in time.

    (just to be clear, I'm talking about people who are ABLE to work, but CHOOSE not to)

    • (Score: 4, Insightful) by mtrycz on Monday December 15 2014, @04:32PM

      by mtrycz (60) on Monday December 15 2014, @04:32PM (#126191)

      Do you even understand what EVOLUTION is about?

      It really gets to me when nerds and geeks get thigs so much wrong.

      --
      In capitalist America, ads view YOU!
      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by nitehawk214 on Monday December 15 2014, @05:10PM

        by nitehawk214 (1304) on Monday December 15 2014, @05:10PM (#126209)

        Misunderstanding evolution indeed. "Die out over a few generations."

        Is GP suggesting that lazyness is genetic? Or, do lazy people live for like 200 years or something? Shit, what am I missing out on?

        --
        "Don't you ever miss the days when you used to be nostalgic?" -Loiosh
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:30PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:30PM (#126221)

          Laziness is genetic. If your parents were too lazy to have any children it's likely you won't have children either. ;)

          p.s. compare various breeds of dogs and you will see there is a genetic component to "energy" and laziness. Try getting different breeds to pull your sled across Alaska. You'll notice some breeds of dogs have many more representatives that actually seem to enjoy pulling stuff. Whereas other breeds tend to have more reps that go "Fuck that".

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @06:47PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @06:47PM (#126250)

            This is how "social scientists" like to pretend they're real scientists. Take some random behavioral observations and hand waive some hereditary explanation on them. "Look! I'm doing science!", to which real scientists look on them with a patronizing smile "Yes you are Timmy. Yes you are. You are a big boy."

            • (Score: 2) by tibman on Monday December 15 2014, @08:50PM

              by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 15 2014, @08:50PM (#126297)

              Are you suggesting that all dog breeds are suitable for sled pulling? Or just taking a stab at an author and not contributing anything of substance? It would be helpful if you point out what they are misunderstanding.

              --
              SN won't survive on lurkers alone. Write comments.
              • (Score: 2) by Pav on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:02AM

                by Pav (114) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:02AM (#126359)

                It's strange how these things work. First it's the delusion of self reliance and pondering their own superiority. The collapse of society from below just confirms these ideas right up until the flame-front reaches them, and if the 1920's is any example they often throw themselves from tall buildings. Why? In creating a world-view that rejects others less fortunate they've rejected their current selves. The upshot is that those that survive and rise from the ashes are wiser - witness the birth of the welfare state, financial regulation etc... etc...

                • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:29AM

                  by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:29AM (#126430)

                  It is funny how the ones who talk of societal upheaval and reformation speak with such hubris as if they, naturally, would not be part of the fall from grace.

                • (Score: 1) by khallow on Thursday December 18 2014, @12:48AM

                  by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Thursday December 18 2014, @12:48AM (#127043) Journal

                  witness the birth of the welfare state, financial regulation etc... etc...

                  Which in my view are solid counterexamples to your assertion of wisdom gained. A world-view is created which rejects perceived risk and pain no matter how much harm that inflicts on society. Welfare is expensive, particularly the sort of welfare that could be provided by the citizens themselves. Such systems can easily be gamed and corrupted by the politically connected. Sure. there's a few societies that haven't gone to seed by doing this, but there are a lot of societies that have. Then you get articles like the one of this story.

              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:20AM

                by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:20AM (#126429)

                Are you suggesting that all dogs breeds could pull a sled across Alaska, but most can't because they just don't have the enthusiasm for it??? You are a dolt, aren't you.

              • (Score: 2) by nitehawk214 on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:01PM

                by nitehawk214 (1304) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:01PM (#126582)

                Who is talking about dogs? I am taking a stab at the guy who started this comment thread. Though I will happily expand that to include this entire article as I find it sexist and stupid.

                I blame the ancient version of slashcode and the lack of a quote button and the comment threading for confusing who I was responding to. I was trying to agree with the immediate parent of my original post.

                (Though you are correct in that I wasn't really contributing anything of substance, but there was none here to begin with.)

                Really I was making a pun about the quote "do not get married or have children will disappear from the gene pool over a few generations". Wouldn't they die out in a single generation, seeing as they did not have any children?

                But anyhow, this can't possibly work, as it is entirely possible for hard working parents to have lazy children. (Considering I am posting from work, I may be one of those children.)

                --
                "Don't you ever miss the days when you used to be nostalgic?" -Loiosh
          • (Score: 2) by rts008 on Tuesday December 16 2014, @04:14AM

            by rts008 (3001) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @04:14AM (#126401)

            If your parents were too lazy to have any children it's likely you won't have children either.

            You have explained your situation quite well.

            BTW, when are your parents going to have any children?

        • (Score: 2) by danomac on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:26PM

          by danomac (979) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:26PM (#126595)

          Is GP suggesting that lazyness is genetic?

          Sure, laziness can be genetic. I'd cite sources, but I don't feel like doing that.

      • (Score: 2) by Immerman on Monday December 15 2014, @05:23PM

        by Immerman (3985) on Monday December 15 2014, @05:23PM (#126217)

        Are you sure you do?

        Evolution is about mutation and death. With the exclusive goal of increasing multi-generational reproductive success. It shapes a species in whatever available directions promote that outcome. Change the environment so that, say, sociopathic businessmen and irresponsible slackers are the subsets most strongly motivated and enabled to reproduction, and any genetic factors that predispose an individual to following either of those paths will start spreading more rapidly through the population.

        • (Score: 2) by NoMaster on Monday December 15 2014, @10:32PM

          by NoMaster (3543) on Monday December 15 2014, @10:32PM (#126329)

          Evolution is about mutation and death. With the exclusive goal of increasing multi-generational reproductive success.

          Nope, evolution doesn't have goals. You're thinking of "natural selection".

          --
          Live free or fuck off and take your naïve Libertarian fantasies with you...
          • (Score: 2) by NoMaster on Monday December 15 2014, @10:35PM

            by NoMaster (3543) on Monday December 15 2014, @10:35PM (#126331)

            (and even then it's an outcome, not a "goal".)

            --
            Live free or fuck off and take your naïve Libertarian fantasies with you...
    • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday December 15 2014, @04:41PM

      by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 15 2014, @04:41PM (#126196)

      Rather comical to swap genders and run the same thought experiment and compare to historical demographics. I don't think they're in any danger of going extinct any time soon.

      Another fun one is assuming females are somehow isolated from the rest of culture ... so the girls themselves, and their dads and brothers, can't get jobs either, and the only difference between the guys in her family and that cute guy at the party is the guy at the party looks like fun to reproduce with... Just not seeing a problem here.

      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by jmorris on Monday December 15 2014, @08:10PM

        by jmorris (4844) on Monday December 15 2014, @08:10PM (#126280)

        so the girls themselves, and their dads and brothers, can't get jobs either

        You are kinda missing the point. Except for what is an insignificant blip on the scale of history, girls don't really worry about 'jobs' since being female IS their job. And they always have that option, only now they don't need to worry about attracting a mate to provide since Uncle Sugar loves em all and will drop goodies down on any female willing to accept the price demanded, which is so attractive, at least at first.

        Men are only obsolete to the extent there is still enough wealth for our society to be this stupid... which won;t be much longer. Which is the problem with progressivism, it is suicidal and self limiting.

        • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Hairyfeet on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:13AM

          by Hairyfeet (75) <bassbeast1968NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:13AM (#126386) Journal

          Insightful? Really mods? News Flash it has NOTHING to do with "progressives" unless you are just butthurt that there aren't people starving in the fucking streets like they have in places like India and has everything to do with the fact capitalism MUST die because its entire foundation, the idea of trading one's labor for capital, is a rotting corpse that has been dead for a couple decades now.

          Do you HONESTLY believe that if it weren't for the "progressive" federal government subsidizing corps like Mickey D's and Walmart's employees that those jobs would still fucking exist? Ever seen the video of the Amazon robot factory? How they have these little robots whizzing around bringing the product to a human picker? Wanna guess what they are working on and in fact have offered a cash prize for somebody to develop? If you said a robot to replace the lone picker then you'd be correct sir!

          The simple fact of the matter is everyone took away the wrong message from the story of John Henry, the ACTUAL moral is "no matter how hard you work the machines keep on coming, work yourself to death and they will STILL win in the end" and nothing you right wingers can do or say will change that fact. Remember when everyone said "its all about education, to compete you just have to be better educated"...well how did that work out? Oh yeah, trillions in student loans that will never be paid back because not only do you have someone with 100K+ in student loan debt who is being told, with a straight fucking face mind you, that they should have to compete with a guy in Bangalore that paid less for a Master's degree than the cost of 3 year old Mustang, but it completely ignores the fact that the world doesn't need a billion rocket scientists because there simply is no point, a handful can do the job and then have their work replicated infinite times with perfect accuracy!

          What too damned many on both the left and right haven't had drilled into their fucking skulls is one simple fact, get ready for this as its a mind scrambler... we have reached the point where human labor is obsolete. Every so often we have what is known as a "singularity", a point in time where the entire world is altered forever,the printing press, the steam engine, internal combustion engine, the airplane, the atomic bomb, these things altered EVERYTHING and completely changed life as we knew it. Nobody thinks anything about reading this page yet before the press only nobles and clergy could read, nobody thinks about getting something shipped from Asia yet before the steam and ICE this was something that would take fricking years and now if you are in a hurry? Just have it shipped airmail and it will be here in days!

          We have reached the point where you can go from gathering the raw material to the finished product on a store shelf using ONLY robots and machines, human interaction is really not required. The only reason you have actual humans doing any of the non skilled labor is the government subsidizes basically being used for "make work" roles. think Mickey D's couldn't replace the worker with an automated assembly line? Hell you'd end up with less screw ups and more consistent output from the machine!

          It is the height of fucking arrogance to blame "progressives" when in reality you have over 300 million in the USA and you don't even need 50 million to do every job that needs doing, in fact of the 7 billion on the planet I'd argue at most you'd need around 1 billion to do every job that can't be done by the machine....what are you gonna do with the other 6 billion? You gonna call them lazy and tell them to bury themselves in debt for jobs that aren't there? Take away their reproductive rights and play eugenics? Put them into camps? Like it or not capitalism like every other ism simply has to die because as Roddenberry predicted in a future with everything done by computers and machines capitalism just does not work. We have already seen what trying to stick with capitalism gets you, it gets you dynasties based on which vagina you happen to fall out of and the 1% controlling more than 85c out of every dollar and with each downturn that number climbs. So either you let capitalism go the way of the USSR or you will likely end up with revolutions all over the place as the poor refuse to go crawl off and die, which will it be? As much as I'd like to dream we would be civilized enough to have the former sadly I believe it will be the latter and probably within the next 20 years. First the student loan bubble will burst and then the financial bubble and when the government can't keep the peasants quiet with survival payments then shit will be hitting the an.

          But until then blaming technology making the working man obsolete on "progressive" programs that keep these people from starving? Assholish to the extreme sir, assholish to the extreme.

          • (Score: 2) by rts008 on Tuesday December 16 2014, @04:22AM

            by rts008 (3001) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @04:22AM (#126406)

            Well said, good sir!

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @08:50AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @08:50AM (#126438)

            Just the right amount of salty language in there.
            This page goes well with that.
            The 6-Step Process to Eradicate the Impoverished Half of USA [commondreams.org]

            -- gewg_

          • (Score: 2) by Kell on Tuesday December 16 2014, @09:00AM

            by Kell (292) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @09:00AM (#126440)

            At first I mistook you for a crackpot, but then I saw your artful and liberal use of capitalisation and bold font and was immediately converted.

            --
            Scientists ask questions. Engineers solve problems.
            • (Score: 2) by Hairyfeet on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:27PM

              by Hairyfeet (75) <bassbeast1968NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:27PM (#126549) Journal

              Spoken like a true libertarian, who when faced with the fact that they have NO actual useful counter argument (other than "fuck them poor motherfuckers, i got mine beeiotch!") will do nothing but throw insults or try to move the goal posts.

              This is why I lump libertarians with other radical religions like Scientology, Moonism, and hardcore Islamist because that is the response you get from all of the above when you point out the giant gaping holes in their religions, they cannot debate, only insult.

              --
              ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
              • (Score: 2) by Kell on Tuesday December 16 2014, @11:23PM

                by Kell (292) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @11:23PM (#126662)

                It's funny when you say that because you can't possibly know a lick about my politics from the two dozen words in my reply. Ironically, I actually agree with pretty much every point you were making (shocking, right?). However, when you make those points in the style of a rambling manifesto, you also makes it difficult for other people to take you seriously. Oh, and immediately going ad hominem when someone calls you on it also isn't helping.
                 
                If you want your arguments to actually convince people (presumably your goal?) then the form of delivery is rather important. Let your concise logical arguments speak for themselves - if your arguments are strong, then there is no need to dress them up with formatting, and certainly no need for ad hominem.

                --
                Scientists ask questions. Engineers solve problems.
          • (Score: 2) by Rivenaleem on Tuesday December 16 2014, @09:55AM

            by Rivenaleem (3400) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @09:55AM (#126443)

            If you haven't read this, (based on your comment I highly doubt you haven't) you will love it. It is a sci-fi story about robots replacing unskilled labour.

            http://marshallbrain.com/manna1.htm [marshallbrain.com]

          • (Score: 2) by sjames on Tuesday December 16 2014, @09:25PM

            by sjames (2882) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @09:25PM (#126623) Journal

            Hear! Hear!

            For over a century man has dreamed of a future where machines do the labor and people enjoy leisure time and great prosperity, but capitalism alone can't get us there. The die-hard capitalists would apparently happily turn the dream into a nightmare for most of the population (never the part they occupy, of course) in order to keep their religion alive a little longer.

          • (Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday December 17 2014, @05:33AM

            by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday December 17 2014, @05:33AM (#126762) Journal

            we have reached the point where human labor is obsolete.

            Which is not a fact because it is not true.

            What I find absurd about this whole argument is the obvious, huge demand for human labor that exists in the world today. Do away with minimum wage and mandatory benefits and you'd find people employed throughout the developed world, just like they are in the developing world.

            We have reached the point where you can go from gathering the raw material to the finished product on a store shelf using ONLY robots and machines

            It is the height of fucking arrogance to blame "progressives" when in reality you have over 300 million in the USA and you don't even need 50 million to do every job that needs doing, in fact of the 7 billion on the planet I'd argue at most you'd need around 1 billion to do every job that can't be done by the machine....what are you gonna do with the other 6 billion?

            Listen to people who understand comparative advantage [wikipedia.org].

          • (Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday December 17 2014, @05:34AM

            by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday December 17 2014, @05:34AM (#126764) Journal

            we have reached the point where human labor is obsolete.

            Which is not a fact because it is not true.

            What I find absurd about this whole argument is the obvious, huge demand for human labor that exists in the world today. Do away with minimum wage and mandatory benefits and you'd find people employed throughout the developed world, just like they are in the developing world.

            We have reached the point where you can go from gathering the raw material to the finished product on a store shelf using ONLY robots and machines

            Another "fact" which isn't true.

            It is the height of fucking arrogance to blame "progressives" when in reality you have over 300 million in the USA and you don't even need 50 million to do every job that needs doing, in fact of the 7 billion on the planet I'd argue at most you'd need around 1 billion to do every job that can't be done by the machine....what are you gonna do with the other 6 billion?

            Listen to people who understand comparative advantage [wikipedia.org].

    • (Score: 2) by GreatAuntAnesthesia on Monday December 15 2014, @05:15PM

      by GreatAuntAnesthesia (3275) on Monday December 15 2014, @05:15PM (#126211) Journal

      > but I have hope that your average female will not see these men as attractive breeding partners a

      "You'll never fail like common people
      You'll never watch your life slide out of view, and dance and drink and screw
      Because there's nothing else to do. "

      -- William Shatner.

      See also, the gene pool bit at the beginning of Idiocracy.

      But yeah, your social darwinist / eugenicist attitudes are both scientifically and morally objectionable.

      • (Score: 2) by Hairyfeet on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:19AM

        by Hairyfeet (75) <bassbeast1968NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:19AM (#126389) Journal

        Uhhh just FYI but that is a Pulp song [metrolyrics.com] although nobody can cover a song like The Shat so I can see why the confusion ;-)

        --
        ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
      • (Score: 2) by GreatAuntAnesthesia on Wednesday December 17 2014, @04:33PM

        by GreatAuntAnesthesia (3275) on Wednesday December 17 2014, @04:33PM (#126927) Journal

        Thanks for the correction, I admit my error.

        "An error doesn't become a mistake until you refuse to correct it." --Leonard Nimoy.

    • (Score: 2) by dcollins on Monday December 15 2014, @05:28PM

      by dcollins (1168) on Monday December 15 2014, @05:28PM (#126220) Homepage

      And by the time they're dead, technology and the economy has moved on and an even larger slice of the population is unnecessary. So they die out too. And technology progresses again and makes more people unnecessary and they die out. And at the end we have a perfected technology and economy and everyone is dead.

      Or you have Arab Spring type upheavals and revolutions driven by the masses of rudderless young men, who knows?

      • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Phoenix666 on Monday December 15 2014, @08:38PM

        by Phoenix666 (552) on Monday December 15 2014, @08:38PM (#126293) Journal

        Right, because millions of people who have been rendered superfluous by technology are historically known for committing mass suicide to remove their worthless carcasses from the collective social burden.

        Is this what libertarians and extreme social darwinists tell themselves these days? If so, I would say that among those millions of "surplus" humans are at least thousands of men, women, and children who are brighter by orders of magnitude than you are. If you gave at least a tenth of them a chance, they'd cure your cancer, solve atmospheric carbon, or do any one of a hundred things that would immediately make your life better. But, you choose instead to dehumanize and discard them like trash.

        For me, this is the core obscenity of our world system as such. Humans are bright and creative and hopeful the world over, and man we would be on the far side of the galaxy inside a decade if we could stop brutalizing and oppressing people. The store of human potential that goes squandered by modern crony capitalism is a crime.

        --
        Washington DC delenda est.
        • (Score: 2) by dcollins on Friday December 19 2014, @07:33AM

          by dcollins (1168) on Friday December 19 2014, @07:33AM (#127421) Homepage

          Wow, your reading comprehension is truly atrocious. But what's the point for someone who apparently believes that interstellar travel is possible within a decade. Psst: Star Trek is fictional.

      • (Score: 2) by tibman on Monday December 15 2014, @09:02PM

        by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 15 2014, @09:02PM (#126301)

        In this case the people are not unnecessary. Them working is unnecessary and that is a big difference. There is no mass of rudderless young men. They have their rudders in the water and are just going with the flow instead of helping to paddle.

        --
        SN won't survive on lurkers alone. Write comments.
    • (Score: 2) by davester666 on Monday December 15 2014, @08:02PM

      by davester666 (155) on Monday December 15 2014, @08:02PM (#126277)

      The article says they don't provide for children, not that they don't have them.

    • (Score: 2) by Hairyfeet on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:44PM

      by Hairyfeet (75) <bassbeast1968NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:44PM (#126552) Journal

      Actually when I was dead broke? I had more women than I knew what to do with. News Flash, just as many shallow women as guys out there and while I was never handsome I was (and am apparently judging by how many times my new wife has threatened to whomp the women trying to flirt with me at the shop or in the building) what is known as "cute and cuddly like a teddy bear" and if I was irresponsible I could have easily had 4 or 5 kids when I was in my "struggling artist" phase.

      So despite the stereotype of women always looking for a sugar daddy there is just as many that just want some plaything and couldn't care less what is in his bank account.

      --
      ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
      • (Score: 2) by Rivenaleem on Thursday December 18 2014, @03:39PM

        by Rivenaleem (3400) on Thursday December 18 2014, @03:39PM (#127169)

        Were you dead broke because you were lazy and had no interested in working, or were you dead broke, but still actively seeking work? I met my wife while I was unemployed, but seeking employment. I wasn't a lazy layabout like the people I'm talking about in my original comment.

  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by VLM on Monday December 15 2014, @04:32PM

    by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 15 2014, @04:32PM (#126190)

    Oh and another thing hashed out on other sites days ago, was in the old days of "the factory" and industrial employment, its pretty easy to verify income tax is being paid by each dude sitting on the line, which seems to exclude unemployment pretty well. But in an era of service oriented jobs, instead of one huge factory you've got 500 restaurants and 200 one man tax accountant practices and handyman contractors and the like, so cash revenue means no taxes paid, and unemployment received. Also the political pressure to employ illegals without inconveniencing them too much means the locals can dual-citizenship and get unemployment/disability and work a job.

    Massive black market employment is a natural outgrowth of a small time service economy with no large industrial employers.

    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by curunir_wolf on Monday December 15 2014, @07:01PM

      by curunir_wolf (4772) on Monday December 15 2014, @07:01PM (#126261)

      Massive black market employment is a natural outgrowth of a small time service economy with no large industrial employers.

      Well there are plenty of "large industrial employers" still around, even though there are fewer and employ less people directly. But black market employment does NOT become widespread on its own - it is typically driven by excessive regulation and taxation, which larger corporations can absorb but small entrepreneurs cannot. That's what "black" markets are - markets banned by government. The greater the regulatory cost of entering the legitimized market, the more businesses will choose to do operate outside of that market.

      --
      I am a crackpot
      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:30AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:30AM (#126366)

        driven by excessive regulation and taxation

        Have you been asleep for 30 years?

        Ever hear of Thatcherism? Reaganism? Clintonism? Neoliberalism?
        Did you not notice how Wall Street imploded after Glass-Steagall was gutted?
        Don't you remember the fertilizer plant in West, Texas that exploded after not being inspected for years and years?
        Recall the chemical plant that dumped poison into the WV river that supplied 300,000 people with drinking water?
        How about the WV coal mine that exploded and killed 29 miners?
        Regulation is historically LOW.

        Taxation on the people most able to pay taxes is also historically LOW. [firedoglake.com]
        Haven't you heard Warren Buffett say he pays less taxes than his secretary?
        The last time taxes on billionaires were this low was just before the GIANT CRASH of 1929.
        Note also the tax rates at the periods where America was the envy of the world.
        High taxes on the rich correlate strongly with national strength and general prosperity.

        Your Tea Party talking points are NONSENSE.

        The actual reasons for high jobless rates and black market labor are low union participation, trade deals that kill tariffs and end up exporting jobs, and a gov't that is for sale to the highest bidder.

        The last time things were this bad, FDR put 15 million people on the public payroll and rebuilt/expanded America's infrastructure.

        OTOH, the last several US Presidents have had financial advisors from the Chicago School of Economics.
        The reason this county is in the crapper is Milton Friedman and the politicians who listened to his garbage.

        -- gewg_

        • (Score: 1) by curunir_wolf on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:20AM

          by curunir_wolf (4772) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:20AM (#126378)

          Regulation is historically LOW.

          No, it's not. Your anecdotes are nothing but statist talking points. What has happened is regulation has shifted from regulations that affect the largest multinational corporations, to instead handing out perverse incentives to those businesses while squeezing the small- and mid-sized businesses. Glass-Steagall affected ONE industry (possibly two if you consider banks and investment houses two different industries - which would be weird). There are arguments to be made that certain incentives and regulations actually made the implosion much worse. I won't try to make that case to you, since you seem to be in government, or supportive of a government with unlimited authority, but it's a compelling argument.

          Taxation on the people most able to pay taxes is also historically LOW.

          Your tax rate chart is meaningless without context. In fact, if you compare this to the percentage of revenues collected, you will find that the taxpayers with the HIGHEST incomes actually paid proportionally HIGHER amount of taxes with lower top rates. This is caused by ... economics. Something people concerned more with using government taxing authority for social engineering do not understand, and the cause of many problems resulting from misguided policies... like, for instance, driving people to black markets as a result of excessive market interventions.

          This, of course, is the classic case of blaming people for acting in their own self interest. After enacting these policies, and finding that the economy works differently than the promoters envisioned, they inevitably blame economic actors for not behaving the way the policy makers want.

          The actual reasons for high jobless rates and black market labor are low union participation, trade deals that kill tariffs and end up exporting jobs, and a gov't that is for sale to the highest bidder.

          OMG are you from the Communist party of the 1930's or something? WTH? I'll grant you the last point. But union participation is low because the jackals running the unions are just as bad as the jackals running the multi-national corporations. It's bad enough being exploited by a company, most people do not want to be exploited by the company AND they union.

          So what tariffs would you put in place, anyway? I can't think of anything we actually make any more that would make much of a difference, other than weapons and weapon systems, and those are selling very well - we're the market leader, after all.

          The last time things were this bad, FDR put 15 million people on the public payroll and rebuilt/expanded America's infrastructure.

          So why not try that again? Well, first of all, the administration plays around with numbers to make it look like unemployment is better than that. And far from looking to put Americans to work doing labor-intensive jobs, the big policy effort is to bring in more immigrants to do that instead. And, of course, move as much manufacturing to China as possible. Regulation drives that, too, because our factories have actual clean air requirements that the Chiners do not.

          You're completely wrong about regulation, and taxes are far too high on the middle class. The upper (really upper) class and the elites generally don't pay taxes at all, or it's a pittance in comparison (not talking about the 1%, who pay a higher PROPORTION of the tax burden than ever - we're talking about the 0.0001%. The group that owns the regulators and use them to throw up barriers to competition make smaller companies less competitive). The fact that you don't realize what kind of regulatory environment we are dealing with today just means that you have never tried to start a business of your own. Once you do, you will realize why the workforce participation is so low.

          --
          I am a crackpot
          • (Score: 2) by Hairyfeet on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:56AM

            by Hairyfeet (75) <bassbeast1968NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:56AM (#126395) Journal

            Your sig stating "I am a crackpot" is oh so apropos as the second you bring in code words like "statist" we know you are a libertarian nutbar. BTW just FYI we have already seen what rampant unleashed capitalism gets us, it was called "the age of the robber barons" and gave us such lovely things as...indentured servitude, women burning alive in sweatshops, the rich hiring their own goon squads to insure those peasants knew their place like the Pinkertons, rivers so filled with toxins that you didn't have to worry about fish giving you cancer because nothing could live in it, the country being divided up among trusts to insure nobody could actually compete with the uber rich, golden vaginas deciding who ruled thanks to insane trust funds, groups like Goldman Sachs who literally cannot lose because they can simply use their immense wealth to have laws written to reimburse them when they make a mistake. hell I could go on all day.

            --
            ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
            • (Score: 1) by curunir_wolf on Wednesday December 17 2014, @03:45AM

              by curunir_wolf (4772) on Wednesday December 17 2014, @03:45AM (#126728)

              ... indentured servitude, women burning alive in ... the rich hiring their own goon squads to insure those peasants knew their place like the XXX, rivers so filled with toxins that you didn't have to worry about fish giving you [DISEASES] because nothing could live in it, the country being divided up among trusts to insure nobody could actually compete with the uber rich, golden vaginas deciding who ruled thanks to insane trust funds, groups like [X, Y, Z] who literally cannot lose

              I hate to break this to you, but ALL of these things have gone on for THOUSANDS of YEARS. These problems were not created by capitalism (or what you call "rampant unleashed capitalism", whatever that is, like it's a kraken or something), but are the result of humans being powerful dicks. Like for thousands of years. What capitalism do was improve the living conditions of the vast majority of people. I know, history, right?

              groups like Goldman Sachs who literally cannot lose because they can simply use their immense wealth to have laws written to reimburse them when they make a mistake

              If you think that has anything to do with "capitalism", maybe you're confusing it with "corporatism", or "fascism", or some other system with massive market interventionism (only for some, of course), but it's nothing like what I would consider capitalism (a market in which consumers have the power over the producers).

              Your sig stating "I am a crackpot" is oh so apropos as the second you bring in code words like "statist" we know you are a libertarian nutbar.

              Oh, sorry, I missed that you were a bigoted partisan stool pigeon.

              --
              I am a crackpot
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:59AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:59AM (#126421)

            anecdotes

            ...which are emblematic of the trend:
            Congress (at the behest of the uber-rich) weakening regulatory agencies.
            If the small businesses are getting the attention, it's because the inspectors are so poorly funded and spread so thin that it becomes easier to show results with a smaller target.
            Don't blame the players when the commissioner was bribed to game the rules.

            revenues collected

            Again, lowered as a result of agencies (IRS, DoJ) defunded to benefit the oligarchs.
            "Austerity" measures absolutely suck.
            Let's stop spending $billions on weapons manufacturers and get the homeland straightened out with lots of jobs and safe workplaces.

            blaming people for acting in their own self interest

            A media outlet I consume mentions how borders are completely porous for capital but sealed tight for labor.
            That's something to think about re: class warfare (with the only 2 actual classes: the ownership class and the working class).
            ...and calling oligarchs (aka corporations) "people" really bothers me.

            are you from the Communist party of the 1930's or something?

            Labor achieved changes in the 1930s that got people talking in terms of a "middle class" (a term I hate).
            You don't get that kind of change without organization.
            The big boys have teams of lawyers and consultants--and, traditionally, leg breakers.
            The David and Goliath story worked once--but that was a fluke.
            Showing up to a gun fight with only a knife makes you a fool.

            what tariffs

            All the ones that were in place back when the joint was jumping.

            I can't think of anything we actually make any more

            "Those jobs aren't coming back". Yeah. That's defeatist talk.
            If we want a working class that has enough cash to buy stuff--y'know, an ECONOMY--we need to make sure enough money stays here.
            The way that was done when things were booming was tariffs--and high taxes on the rich.
            What we have now is a race to the bottom and an expanding underclass.
            In many places (e.g. WV), we are a third world country with tiny pockets of affluence.

            why not try [the New Deal] again?

            Amen. Repeating successes is a great idea.

            the administration plays around with [unemployment] numbers

            We agree there.
            Now, can we agree to stop electing Reds and Blues?

            [Regulation drives manufacturing to China]

            It didn't in the days when we had standards.
            Neoliberal trade deals killed that.
            TPP et al wants to exterminate what little is left.

            You're completely wrong about regulation

            Well, I may have been several decades late getting started, but I'm definitely not wrong.
            You, OTOH, seem to want to eliminate all standards and expect that driving toward the cliff even faster will magically improve things.

            a gov't that is for sale to the highest bidder
            I'll grant you the last point

            Ah. Consensus. (In previous threads I've mentioned Ralph Nader's Left-Right Alliance where he and Grover Norquist have teamed up.)
            Yeah. This is absolutely Step 1.
            It is gonna take a constitutional amendment to get there:
            Corporations are not people; money is not speech.

            -- gewg_

            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @06:59AM

              by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @06:59AM (#126426)

              Corporations are not people

              in the current albeit shitty environment, corporations pay taxes so legally they are

              they shouldn't be paying taxes though, cos their employees, shareholders and customers all pay taxes

              the government has more than enough income to operate various departments of inspection. that they are totally inept at enforcing ridiculously overcomplicated rules and regulations is not the fault of corporations

              progressive retards will never listen, but eventually the collapse of the US government under its own weight might teach them (though they'll probably just blame it on someone else as usual)

        • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday December 16 2014, @11:23AM

          by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday December 16 2014, @11:23AM (#126454) Journal

          Regulation is historically LOW.

          Yea, right. That's why the US currently produces regulation at a rate that is unreadable by humans just due to its sheer volume.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by ikanreed on Monday December 15 2014, @04:33PM

    by ikanreed (3164) on Monday December 15 2014, @04:33PM (#126192) Journal

    The diminishing purchasing power of the minimum wage. Being the working poor these days isn't too different from being the totally poor, except you get to be belittled and ordered about for 8-12 hours a day. The value of work for works' sake isn't compelling to a lot of people.

    • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday December 15 2014, @04:44PM

      by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 15 2014, @04:44PM (#126197)

      Mostly correct, although we still haven't beaten the "temporarily inconvenienced millionaire" meme out of the population, but they're working hard on it.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @04:53PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @04:53PM (#126200)

      Working to achieve a job well done is still compelling, working in order to be insulted is not compelling.

      Work does not liberate you, arbeit macht frei is a lie and an insult.

      A person which recognizes that something thought to be true is a lie will start to look at the other truths that are lies. Maybe people will start to talk to each other about it. Anything could happen.

      • (Score: 5, Interesting) by ikanreed on Monday December 15 2014, @05:06PM

        by ikanreed (3164) on Monday December 15 2014, @05:06PM (#126208) Journal

        Yeah, work to achieve something you believe in is great. Anyone who has their more basic needs and securities taken care of realizes that need to make something you're proud of. But Maslow's hierarchy of needs [wikipedia.org] is a real thing.

        I think all of us have an amount of money that's "enough" and after that you want your work to have meaning, and you'll start considering exchanging pay for meaning. The problem is that the working poor don't get that. They often don't get enough to really reach the security rung.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:42PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:42PM (#126224)

          > Anyone who has their more basic needs and securities taken care of realizes that need to make something you're proud of.

          Based on personal experience, I don't think that's even close to being universal. I made about 1.5M and basically dropped out of the workforce 6 years ago. I don't do shit with my time and I don't feel any great motivation to do shit. I've considered doing volunteer work, habitat for humanity that sort of thing. But I've got no interest in being proud of it, just that I'm kinda bored and better to help out the poor than to help out the rich. Maybe I'm just a nihlist, but I doubt that I'm alone.

          • (Score: 3, Interesting) by tibman on Monday December 15 2014, @09:11PM

            by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 15 2014, @09:11PM (#126304)

            You've missed the really big one. Your don't have to work anymore so you don't. You traded that future income for more personal time. Some people would just work less but still stay involved. You went all the way.

            --
            SN won't survive on lurkers alone. Write comments.
            • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @12:33AM

              by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @12:33AM (#126351)

              Oh I recognize that. But there is no pride in that. I'm not accomplishing one damn thing. And so that's why I'm inclined to believe, that given a sufficient baseline standard of living, a whole lot of the human race would do the same - do nothing, contribute nothing.

              • (Score: 2) by urza9814 on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:00PM

                by urza9814 (3954) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:00PM (#126541) Journal

                Oh I recognize that. But there is no pride in that. I'm not accomplishing one damn thing. And so that's why I'm inclined to believe, that given a sufficient baseline standard of living, a whole lot of the human race would do the same - do nothing, contribute nothing.

                Do you mind telling what exactly it is that you do with your time then? This is the classic argument against socialism -- if people didn't have to work to put food on the table, they won't work at all. And frankly, I've never been able to buy that. I have an endless list of things I want to build or do. Much of it solely for myself, but much of it that could be useful to others as well. Ordinarily I don't get much done. I work 40 hours a week, and I get home tired and burned out and sit on the couch watching TV or playing a game. But as soon as I have three or more consecutive days off, I start getting busy. Give me at least three days off and by day three I'm setting up public servers, looking for open source projects to contribute to, building hardware and posting photos and build details online. Granted, it's all pretty small personal projects, but that's just because that's all I have time for anymore. Give me three months off and I'll be back contributing to Freenet or some other project like I used to. As it stands now I get so few opportunities with sufficient time and motivation that it takes me a couple years just to set up my home network. I'm a pretty lazy dude, I can spend a *long* time hedonistically watching TV, smoking joints, and ordering takeout...but at a certain point even I will be driven out of my freakin' mind with boredom.

                So...yeah, surely you can't just be sitting there watching TV and reading Soylent all day, right? You must be doing *something* productive...? I mean if we're comparing hobby level work to employment level work, that just means you have to be at least as valuable to society as the guy flipping burgers at McDonald's, not necessarily curing cancer or building the next space shuttle.

                Or perhaps you just travel or something? I'm pretty sedentary too so that makes the boredom hit faster I guess. Or wife and kids maybe? I'm sure that would keep you busy, but I'd certainly consider raising children to be something of value.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:49PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:49PM (#126229)

          Maslow's hierarchy is overrated : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maslow%27s_hierarchy_of_needs#Criticism [wikipedia.org]

          It doesn't fit well enough to a lot of real life stuff. Too many exceptions, and those exceptions are often important parts of human behaviour, society and culture.

          Plenty of people willingly die while trying to achieve nonphysiological goals.
          Many people for sentimental etc reasons insist on staying somewhere that has become unsafe.
          Many people do dangerous stuff to satisfy esteem needs (and not physiological - air, food, drink, shelter, warmth, sex, sleep).

          It is true that if you don't have any food or water you're not going to be able to work for very long towards any goal. But you don't need Maslow's hierarchy to explain that.

          • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday December 16 2014, @11:48AM

            by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday December 16 2014, @11:48AM (#126461) Journal
            Maslow's hierarchy is not comprised of entirely physiological goals. And where are the actual criticisms? The hierarchy doesn't apply because a society can do a 1984-style lobotomization of citizens so that they can't even understand that they might have a need? That people might have a slightly different prioritization of needs?

            It is true that if you don't have any food or water you're not going to be able to work for very long towards any goal. But you don't need Maslow's hierarchy to explain that.

            So what? It fits with the model so it can't be used as a criticism.

            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:49PM

              by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:49PM (#126598)

              Different AC.

              It is not a useful model. It has no explanatory power and it has no predictive power. It is far too simplistic. It is an abstract imagined hierarchical idealization (according to Maslow's ideals) based on hypothetical extremes and no one actually prioritizes according to it in its hierarchical order because nearly no one if anyone at all would survive if they did. Instead people are amazingly flexible and varied and defy any such rigid templates.

              The easiest way to disprove Maslow is through any of all the people who consider themselves to have none of the needs fulfilled: anyone who doesn't answer "physiological" has broken the validity of the pretentious pyramid. Most people in such a situation will list everything they're missing, not only one or a handful of things belonging to "physiological". If it is only supposed to apply to starving people first and so on up through the hierarchy then it is nothing but perverse. There are many other ways to attack Maslow's pyramid, particularly the definitions and their meaning and/or their somewhat arbitrary nature and levels of fulfillment, and they all succeed.

              However what it is extremely good at is to convince people they've understood more than they actually have and that they have reached some kind of insight when they have not. Pure dogma. It is to social sciences what Freud is to psychology: somewhat embarrassing in its infantile self-absorbed nature. It's the kind of thing left behind in textbooks as an entry point for those who choose to go on to a relevant field of study which should quickly teach them why it was significant and why it is useless and obsolete. Primary and secondary education is full of it. It is annoying as hell because it leaves behind an awful lot of anti-education which people either wrongly believe in or do not appreciate the significance of. Sadly the same technique is used all the way up to and including introductory tertiary education (secondary and tertiary freshman "Philosophy of Science" is the most horrific I know of, half year forwards and then two years backwards undoing all the damage lol but if that initial half year is all someone has got then at least they have some straws to cling on to).

              As science improves the volume of old less correct science increases and some of it is tenacious and hard to remove. some of it much worse than other and some of it wrong from the beginning, bubbles of dead science languishing in faculties and studies all over the place.

              Let me give you a much nicer example for you to test yourself privately: you might already know the actual answer but why is the double slit experiment on the physics curriculum? Answer on your own before looking up its actual significance (and you might have to search and read a good while to find that anyway). I'll tell you in advance that despite what most textbooks says (and which the relevant Wikipedia page uses most of its space on) the answer to why it is one the curriculum is not actually because it illustrates and introduces "wave-particle duality" (whatever that is *cough*). That's the entry point placeholder right there. I was amazed when I was told (and I had to be told the significance), it makes far more sense and of course considering that relevance they had to include it or the whole entire school subject of physics would be a joke, too bad they didn't say why. No it isn't quanta either, just one small step and you can say hello to Thomas Kuhn while passing goal.

              (I think it's a waste. Poor students don't gain anything by being told fibs or by being misled by superficialities and smart students have to be reeducated, maybe geniuses just drift by grasping the actual truth or importance despite it but there's no reason they would. It makes things harder to "learn" because it doesn't actually contain anything particularly sensible or explanatory which in turn makes it boring and dumb.)

              • (Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday December 17 2014, @05:21AM

                by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday December 17 2014, @05:21AM (#126758) Journal

                It is not a useful model. It has no explanatory power and it has no predictive power.

                How about we actually look at the model? First, what does it attempt to model? Human preference. One feature is that needs/wants range from the physical to the abstract and are arranged in some sort of order of priority. A second is that such wants saturate. Just because you can have more food, doesn't mean you want more food. So it is allegedly possible to saturate and sate wants at a certain level. It explains why populaces tend to prefer safety over freedom. Or prefer food over social stability or environmental protections. It also explains why we haven't driven ourselves to extinction with overeating. Hence, it has explanatory power.

                As to predictive power, it predicts that wants of a certain level are not infinite by the person. We won't want an infinite number of hamburgers right now, an infinite supply of fresh air, or an infinite stream of entertainment. It predicts that as wants and needs are satisfied, new wants and needs appear. And these new wants and needs tend to be more abstract and harder to quantify.

                It is far too simplistic.

                Compared to what? What are you trying to do with the model? You already have claimed it doesn't actually do anything for you. Meaning simplicity is already irrelevant.

                It is an abstract imagined hierarchical idealization (according to Maslow's ideals) based on hypothetical extremes and no one actually prioritizes according to it in its hierarchical order because nearly no one if anyone at all would survive if they did. Instead people are amazingly flexible and varied and defy any such rigid templates.

                Have you actually looked at the hierarchy? The first needs are immediate survival-based, then the next level is long term survival-based. Fulfill the first two levels and you can check off survival. Second, what is "extreme" about the model?

                Let me give you a much nicer example for you to test yourself privately: you might already know the actual answer but why is the double slit experiment on the physics curriculum?

                It's a table top demonstration of wave interference. The quantum version, where you interfere with single photons passing through double slits in particular ways and get profoundly different interference patterns as a consequence, is a demonstration of wave-particle duality despite your contrary assertion. Further, these are experiments which are historically relevant (your reference to Thomas Kuhn's "paradigm shift") and only tried for the first time (in the quantum version) within a human lifespan.

                Anyway, getting back to the subject at hand, if you have a better model than Maslow's hierarchy for explaining human preferences, then by all means mention it here. After all, you can't have a paradigm shift without a better model.

        • (Score: 1) by Synonymous Homonym on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:46PM

          by Synonymous Homonym (4857) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:46PM (#126501) Homepage

          Maslow a shit.

          Maslow's hierarchy of needs is decidedly not a real thing, it is wishful thinking by arseholes like Maslow.

          Oh, you don't need human contact, you don't even have enough food!
          Oh, you don't need to have ideas of your own, nobody likes you anyway!
          Oh, you cannot possibly have depression, you don't make enough money for that!

          How can anyone actually believe any of that?

          • (Score: 2) by ikanreed on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:49PM

            by ikanreed (3164) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:49PM (#126502) Journal

            Almost every criticism of the idea comes from this strawman deconstruction where lower needs prohibit interest in higher needs. That's not quite right. Lack of lower needs diminishes interest in higher ones.

    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday December 16 2014, @11:38AM

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday December 16 2014, @11:38AM (#126456) Journal

      The diminishing purchasing power of the minimum wage.

      Indeed, $0 per hour buys half as much as it did twenty years ago!

  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @04:39PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @04:39PM (#126194)

    People need to realize the scale of it. It is not only the worker that “vanishes”, given a little patience the person does too. The demographic replacement is imported, something which has been going on for years. A society which isn't self-sustaining isn't a society.

    This started over five decades ago. Could it be more deliberate?

    • (Score: 2) by GungnirSniper on Monday December 15 2014, @04:55PM

      by GungnirSniper (1671) on Monday December 15 2014, @04:55PM (#126202) Journal

      Who needs our working class when we can import a new one for less? Who needs our middle class when overtime cuts into profits [pbs.org]?

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:16PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:16PM (#126308)

      "Genocide?" methinks that word does not mean what you think it means. I invite you to take a look in palestine or varou afrikan countries to get a better understanding....

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @10:10PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @10:10PM (#126641)

        Eradication is genocide.

        You talk about Palestinians because you've been spoonfed garbage.

        Palestinians and Israelis are very good at making a lot of noise for sympathy and support.

        Semite is a term that includes just about every ethnicity in the Middle East and northernmost Africa: Egypt (almost all Arab), Libya, Algeria, Tunisia (Carthaginians were eradicated), and Morocco but not Spain after the Muslim extended invasion was finally stopped and defeated just as it was in a separate expansion by invasion during a different Caliphate outside Vienna in Austria in central Europe. Both Arabs and Hebrews are Semites but Jews are not necessarily Semite however most Jews have some Semite ancestry. Many have a lot of Semite ancestry due to the insular nature of Jews (outsiders have to convert and be good at it), a trait they share with Muslims (outsiders have to convert and be good at it).

        Palestinian is not an ethnicity or culture (but Arab is).

        Israeli is not an ethnicity or culture (but Hebrew is).

        Many Hebrew like to believe that Israel is a culture and many Arabs like to believe Palestine is a culture. Such Hebrew don't like non-Hebrews much or non-Jews, and such Arabs don't like non-Palestinian Arabs much or non-Muslims. These groups are so alike it's no wonder they hate each other so much.

        Arabs (Palestinians) are in no danger of genocide and never have been in recorded history but they have eradicated quite a few ethnicities and cultures during the last one and a half thousand years (I think the only non-Arabs left along Mediterranean Africa are the Berbers (one can add tiny Western Sahara which has also become Arabic except for Berbers). No one else is comparable. After a long period of decay Arab ethnicity and culture has been surging in power and influence for the last seventy years due to oil. If you think the Saudis and their subsidiary Gulf emirates are wrong to ally with Israel instead of Palestinians you can debate it with them instead of me. If you think the Jordanians were and are wrong to not accept the land and the population as its own then you can take it up with them instead of me. There is no difference between a Jordanian and a Palestinian. The Egyptians only became involved due to peer pressure and wouldn't be too relevant, the Sinai peninsular is mostly a sparsely populated desert, there are mostly Bedouin (Arab) there. When most of the rest of the world think of Arabs they're either thinking of what would be stereotypical Bedouin, it is a positive and romantic stereotype, or the Saudi style of "Sheiks" (they're not actually Sheiks) in white.

        Hebrews (many but not all Israeli) have been through a partial genocide committed by Europeans several generations ago and are along with any other Jews being threatened with genocide by various Arab and Persian groups and possibly Iran (Persians) but an actual genocide seems unlikely because the Arabs have tried several times without success during the last seventy years including multiple large scale wars. If you think they (along with other Jews) should have all accepted the free land of the Jewish Autonomous Region (still in existence) as offered by Stalin then you go argue with them about it, not me. Likewise if you think Hebrews and/or Jews don't need or deserve a country. Not my business.

        If you want to worry about anyone in that region of the world you should worry about the Copts first, they're the last Egyptians and nearly extinct and in great danger of genocide by Arabs, then the Lebanese (although that might be too complicated to describe as genocide), and then the Kurds. No I am not Coptic, Lebanese, or Kurd nor do I live in the region.

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Phoenix666 on Monday December 15 2014, @04:56PM

    by Phoenix666 (552) on Monday December 15 2014, @04:56PM (#126203) Journal

    I think about this dynamic a lot, as a product of the best quantitative social scientific training the world has to offer, and as an individual whose personal experience has run the gamut from wont to excess. There are stupid, oblivious people in the world. That is sure. But the number of informed, concerned, and motivated people in the world number far greater than elites would suppose. Those they ought to fear. Every PhD or Master's candidate they structurally frustrate becomes an opponent. Every man or woman whose training and education they render moot through cronyism or corruption becomes another quantum of social pressure. In times past, they might successfully oppress any wonder, including a Da Vinci or Aristotle. Now, we have collectively have the means, technologically, to express our genius and our frustration.

    People whose interests lie with the status quo will pooh-pooh this. The coder whose boss patted him on the head this week will swear up and down that the meritocracy exists and that "those who work hard enough will be rewarded," but the rest of us, older and/or wiser, will know better. When fundamental social, economic, and technological trends all point in one direction, you, as a guardian of the status quo, oppose them at your peril.

    There is an oft-repeated meme online, and here, that obsession with objects like the Kardashians trumps real civic engagement. There is an oft-repeated meme that that trumps objective reality. But I don't think so. Those who are most frustrated with that status quo are least likely to be bought off with empty promises. They know real, they crave real, they will have real.

    To make the world a better place, and to frankly save humanity, those educated, frustrated strata must move beyond their received assumptions, that they're alone and that they're powerless. They can sharply make the world a better place, if they will let go of their learned helplessness.

    --
    Washington DC delenda est.
    • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Stuntbutt on Monday December 15 2014, @05:42PM

      by Stuntbutt (662) on Monday December 15 2014, @05:42PM (#126225)

      Your analysis is what I would expect of someone claiming those credentials. Kudos.

      As a practical output, though, Action-To-Be-Taken is much harder than the analysis. Look at Hong Kong's riots, for example. Lots of intelligent, educated people protested with a reasonably unified message. However, as the message diluted, action became impossible. The same could be said of the Occupy movement a few years ago in the USA. Central theme? Sure. Unified direction? Nope.

      Directing the intelligentsia, or even the masses you describe that form the motivation for change, is nontrivial. Some want revolution. Some want violence / redistribution. Yet another group will want a slight tinkering of the rules (errata!) to re-align the direction and allow for the self-correction. Couple this with the corruption of each attempt by Those In Power, and you see how the assessment of the position, while remarkable, is ultimately pointless.

      We need a catalyst, worldwide, to shake off the nonsense. The problem is what that catalyst is, and if it is a violent upheaval or an elevation (Renaissance) of human understanding.

      • (Score: 2) by Phoenix666 on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:32PM

        by Phoenix666 (552) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:32PM (#126494) Journal

        Your analysis is what I would expect of someone claiming those credentials.

        Not claiming them. Have them. Graduate school at the University of Chicago Department of Social Sciences.

        But you imply that what I said is the mere product of Ivory Tower thinking. It isn't. I've been deeply involved with grassroots activism in New York for 20 years and have a very good handle on the challenges of collective action.

        All the points you made are good ones. Yes, sabotage, competing interests, group dynamics, they all make it difficult to achieve change. Sabotage in particular has become more effective at derailing traditional opposition structures since the NSA and Homeland Security have gone light-years beyond what J. Edgar Hoover did in the 1960's to undermine the Civil Rights movement. It is a non-trivial challenge to overcome.

        But the first step is to do what I pointed out, which is to abandon the learned helplessness and powerlessness that stifles much opposition before it even forms. Part of that is to expose the incompetence of the Powers That Be and tear down the illusion of omniscience and omnipotence once and for all.

        --
        Washington DC delenda est.
        • (Score: 1) by Stuntbutt on Tuesday December 16 2014, @08:17PM

          by Stuntbutt (662) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @08:17PM (#126608)

          Ugh.

          I re-read my response, and my tone was more marginalizing of your post than I care for. My bad.

          I agree with your assessment. As an engineer, I look at action and what principles drive it. Your original post was great on principles and a little light on what the next step is. Nevermind, though, because we're on the same side, here. Thank you for your assessment, and grats on your schooling, sir/ma'am. :)

      • (Score: 2) by urza9814 on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:59PM

        by urza9814 (3954) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:59PM (#126558) Journal

        As a practical output, though, Action-To-Be-Taken is much harder than the analysis. Look at Hong Kong's riots, for example. Lots of intelligent, educated people protested with a reasonably unified message. However, as the message diluted, action became impossible. The same could be said of the Occupy movement a few years ago in the USA. Central theme? Sure. Unified direction? Nope.

        Well, I don't have the information to speak about Hong Kong, but Occupy can be either a huge failure or a grand success depending on how you look at it. Did Occupy end income inequality? No. Did anyone ever think they would? Absolutely not. Did they make it a feature of mainstream conversation, even three years later? Definitely.

        If you look at it in terms of immediately changing the structure of the political and economic system, it didn't do much. But if you look at it in terms of building a movement around those issues, it was extremely successful. National waves of protest used to be the exception in the country, now they are the rule. There may have been some annual Black Friday protests before Occupy, but they weren't nearly on the same scale. There were isolated protests against police brutality, but they weren't shutting down highways across the nation night after night for a week or more. The Mike Brown/Eric Garner protests got so big there was even action at some US Embassies overseas! Occupy wasn't the war, it was the draft.

        So yeah, Occupy didn't do much -- but the networks it created have. Walmart is voluntarily raising wages. Obama is funding police body cameras. We finally have a national healthcare system, even though it kinda sucks. A couple bankers are facing charges. A couple corrupt cops are being investigated. They're very, *very* small steps, they're certainly still not systemic changes, but they're a start.

        • (Score: 2) by metamonkey on Wednesday December 17 2014, @03:55PM

          by metamonkey (3174) on Wednesday December 17 2014, @03:55PM (#126914)

          Also, Occupy scared the shit out of the elites. The militarization of the policy, the doubling-down on domestic surveillance, the passing of curfew laws to stymie future protests, are all a reaction to Occupy. They increased the pressure on the lower classes, to the point the usually oblivious middle class is suddenly aware their local PD has a tank and their phone calls are all being recorded. The response to Occupy 1 made an eventual Occupy 2 inevitable.

          Occupy didn't do anything. It was poor hippies. Occupy 2 will include engineers and accounts and lawyers who can't find jobs and can't pay back their student loans and 55 year olds who lost their jobs and are eating dog food...

          --
          Okay 3, 2, 1, let's jam.
      • (Score: 2) by Hairyfeet on Tuesday December 16 2014, @06:06PM

        by Hairyfeet (75) <bassbeast1968NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday December 16 2014, @06:06PM (#126561) Journal

        That is because movements like Occupy get invaded by Social Justice Warriors [youtube.com] who proceed to wreck the thing, like how they tried to make atheism into atheism plus. If you look at a typical SJW they are upper middle class millennial twits who think their shit doesn't stink and think they have all the answers, in other words narcissists. And nothing a narcissist hates more than the spotlight being on someone else so here they come to jam their way in front of the camera to try to get their cause to be the focus. Doesn't matter if it has fuck all to do with something like occupy because they are always right so go fuck yourself, they know what is best.

        This is why you can't keep a movement going for any length of time anymore, because the longer it goes on the more SJW will show up until the message has been so polluted nobody gives a shit and it all falls apart.

        --
        ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:48PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:48PM (#126228)

      That would be one explanation why so many terrorists have been highly educated. [foreignpolicy.com] Not necessarily the only explanation, but certainly a possible factor.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @06:39PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @06:39PM (#126246)

      Pretty good assessment

      "those who work hard enough will be rewarded"

      I want to add to that. You *MUST* work hard or you get nothing. However, if you work hard does not mean you will get anything.

      There is an element of 'luck'. Or the old saying 'Lady luck favors the prepared'.

      Luck is usually the ability to do three things.
      1) see that you have been presented an opportunity (the lucky bit)
      2) The ability to actually seize upon that opportunity (learning what to do)
      3) The will to actually carry thru (the work hard bit).

      If you fail on any of those 3 steps you will get nothing. In some cases you end up worse off.

      frustrated strata must move beyond their received assumptions
      It all folds in upon itself. Words are cheap, actions speak louder than words. So now that you 'know' how to do something what are you going to do with it? If your answer is to go on the internet and bitch you will not get steps 1-3. As you never even started as no one wants to give opportunities to someone who whines about it. Words are cheap.

      • (Score: 2) by mhajicek on Monday December 15 2014, @10:57PM

        by mhajicek (51) on Monday December 15 2014, @10:57PM (#126336)

        4. You need to avoid getting screwed out of the fruits of your labor.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:59AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:59AM (#126373)

          4a. Figure out how to take what you have learned and start your own business.

          -- gewg_

          • (Score: 2) by mhajicek on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:32AM

            by mhajicek (51) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:32AM (#126381)

            Tried that. Getting paid as a small business can be very difficult.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:09PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:09PM (#126513)

            I would consider your 4a to be part of step 1. Recognize an opportunity.

            Building your own business is seeing that working for the man makes less than doing it yourself. You need steps 2 and 3 to pull it off.

            Step 4 is a good idea but I am not convinced it fits my steps. Perhaps step one needs to be revised. The ability to see bad and good opportunities and act accordingly. As you would asses someone trying to take your money as a bad opportunity and you would not act on it.

            Also given all the steps there is 0 guarantee. Just the possibility of an opportunity. Stack the odds in your favor.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:26AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:26AM (#126365)

        You *MUST* work hard or you get nothing.

        False. Some are practically born into wealth.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:39PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:39PM (#126498)

          Yeah waiting for a rich uncle to die so I can get wealth or maybe I can win the lottery. Thats going to work sooooo well. Let me know how that works out for you. /sarc

          You are missing my point. The point is for the 99% working hard is the only way up. If you do that you have the possibility of getting wealthy. If you do nothing and worry about what others have you will get nothing as well. However, 'working hard' does not necessarily get you anything. It takes a stroke of 'luck' to get ahead.

          There are 0 guarantees. You can however stack the odds in your favor. But even that the house usually wins.

    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday December 16 2014, @12:28PM

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday December 16 2014, @12:28PM (#126467) Journal

      To make the world a better place, and to frankly save humanity, those educated, frustrated strata must move beyond their received assumptions, that they're alone and that they're powerless. They can sharply make the world a better place, if they will let go of their learned helplessness.

      They did. Then they realized that their fellow educated, frustrated strata was the competition. Just look at academia, the primary manufacturer of discontent. It's a microcosm of the dynamic. Every tenured professor started life as a "strata" and won the lottery. Yet they have a peculiar tone-deafness when it comes to the needs of the next generation of would-be tenured professors.

      It wouldn't take much modification to get education and research more in line with what students and society actually needs from academia. But it's more important to have a million little fiefdoms and low accountability. So we have phenomena like the student loan trap, way too high a production of PhDs (which are for a lot of fields, just training for professorships), the "every scrap of research is sacred" fantasy, a large and growing disengagement between the curriculum and relevant education for holding a job, and the usual ivory tower narcissism.

      A similar thing happens with social policy in economics which currently boils down to appropriating money from people to spend on perceived social needs (usually the elimination of risk). It's never been a better time for social policy implementation. Yet all we hear about are the super-powerful evil corporations. Turns out that a company which specializes in political opportunism is better at this game than the social policy people who enabled this exploitable system. And the implementers of social policy can be readily bribed.

      So what is the response to this? Scapegoat the evil corporations and double-down on the approach that caused the problems. More social benefits, more political corruption enabled.

      Sometimes bad things just happen. Here, the social changes from the introduction of contraception left human males on the losing side for a couple of generations. Similarly, globalization has resulted in a substantial impact on the earning power of developed world labor while simultaneously making mobile capital a bit more valuable. But bad things are always happening. What changes is how we respond to them.

      What I see discussed here are certain harmful behaviors that not only make the problems of societies worse, but which are self-perpetuating.

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:17PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:17PM (#126212)
    Isn't this the exact outcome that the 3rd wave feminism/social justice crowd is working for - the disenfranchisement and obsolescence of white males? Especially those evil cishet ones...
    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by emg on Monday December 15 2014, @06:02PM

      by emg (3464) on Monday December 15 2014, @06:02PM (#126237)

      No. In SJW World, men are supposed to keep working to pay for all the tax-funded benefits the SJWs have voted themselves.

      This seems more a Randian thing, with men 'going Galt' because they don't want to be slaves to the looters.

    • (Score: 2) by Sir Garlon on Monday December 15 2014, @06:29PM

      by Sir Garlon (1264) on Monday December 15 2014, @06:29PM (#126245)

      If by "disenfranchisement and obsolescence" you mean having to participate in a fair labor market alongside women and minorities, then yes. You sound like a sore loser.

      --
      [Sir Garlon] is the marvellest knight that is now living, for he destroyeth many good knights, for he goeth invisible.
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @07:43PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @07:43PM (#126272)
        I'm what's lovingly referred to as a shitlord. And you don't exactly hide your white knighthood...
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:25AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:25AM (#126363)

        >How dare you point that a lot segment of the population has been disenfranchised, if you don't support women completely dominating all industries using the "muh vagina" card about past perceived discrimination, you're a sore loser. And how dare you bring up that men have been the whipping boy of the western intelligentsia for the past 50 years, you non-Devitokin cishit.

      • (Score: 1) by khallow on Tuesday December 16 2014, @12:30PM

        by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday December 16 2014, @12:30PM (#126468) Journal

        If by "disenfranchisement and obsolescence" you mean having to participate in a fair labor market alongside women and minorities

        "IF".

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:19PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @05:19PM (#126214)

    This is an international phenomenon. But I guess in this time of clickbait and navel-gazing you gotta do what you gotta do.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by iamjacksusername on Monday December 15 2014, @06:01PM

    by iamjacksusername (1479) on Monday December 15 2014, @06:01PM (#126236)

    I am toward the younger end of the spectrum though I am approaching grey-beard status when compared to the 20-year old workers dominating the start-up world. I am seeing the trend of many men in American society are being shunted into the "undate-able" pool. My experience in the dating pool as I entered my 30s is extremely stratified. Having the following 6 characteristics will make a man a valuable commodity among his heterosexual, female peers in their 30s. This is the closest time in a man's life that he will have to the experience of being an 18-year old attractive woman. The 4th one is controversial but it would be misleading if I did not include it.

    1) Having stable employment in the true middle-class (I define true middle class in the NE US as making > $80K / year. Housing in the NE metro corridor is insanely expensive compared to middle America)
    2) Having my own place (renting or owning)
    3) Owning a car kept in good shape... not a beater.
    4) Be white
    5) Be clean (no addictions, no STDs, no weird mental issues, no kids)
    6) Don't be obese

      The converse of this is that not having these (excluding the racial component but that is a complicated topic) makes a man undate-able. I saw an article about the woes of professionally successful women trying to date men in NYC. The issue is not the overall supply of single men; the issue was the supply of single men who were of equivalent economic status. Women do not date down economically-speaking while economics are a secondary considerations many men. In NYC, the ratio of 30+ year old single men making > $200K / year who are willing to date women of similar age and economic status is quite lopsided. Most men who are making good money in NYC have a much wider selection pool because they are not selecting on economic factors that, in NYC, are a very strong selector (because of the distorted cost-of-living economics. NYC economics). This has reversed the traditional supply and demand dynamics of the male / female coupling. In NYC, these women are the "buyers" with the men being the "commodity" in short supply.

    I see this is a much wider tend across the US as male-dominated industries see significant reductions in relative wages. Pair this with the economic advancement of women in general, and the general trend of women getting more education than women, the result is one where a large portion of the male population is no longer in the traditional selection pool f0or women. I do not know the end-game... historically, this usually resulted in large emigration, voluntary or otherwise as we saw with large, migrant, primarily male labor forces in railroading, mining, farming, fishing, etc... I honestly am not sure what to expect. Maybe a Japanese trend where people coupling is no longer the usual or normal?

    I do not mean this as criticism of one gender or the other. Just my observations.

    • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday December 15 2014, @06:49PM

      by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 15 2014, @06:49PM (#126252)

      From my own observation your list of 6 criteria for men (and women) would seem to change it from a study of human mating habits to a study of unicorn mating habits.

      In a city of eight million those criteria are so rare we may as well list the individuals by name not just count them. So Sally can't meet Harry because there's 7.999998 million other people who don't meet the criteria standing in the way, etc. Maybe online dating will help.

      historically, this usually resulted in ...

      Not just your economic activities, but also warfare. If I were Canada I'd be worried... you got world class maple syrup, hockey, women, and health care and we want them...

      • (Score: 1) by iamjacksusername on Monday December 15 2014, @07:31PM

        by iamjacksusername (1479) on Monday December 15 2014, @07:31PM (#126269)

        I agree the list makes some pretty big generalizations, is very NE US-specific, and certainly does not account for outliers. However, having been in the NE US dating pool in large cities, that list definitely holds up. I think it is a very strong statement on the economic status of large groups of men in our society where simply having some very basic requirements that, 30 years ago, nobody would have given a second thought to, makes someone a unicorn (excluding the racial dynamic but that is very complicated and out of scope for a short reply).

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @08:43PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @08:43PM (#126295)

      I agree with the experiences of this poster. Finding myself a single nerd at 25, I found myself at the top of the dating pool. It is true that the 'sexual attractiveness of an engineer starts near 30. Traits include:
        - owns a house
        - owns a car
        - has education (MS at the time, PhD later)
        - has an interesting job
        - makes enough that the female wouldn't have to work (80+K/year)
        - has manners/caring
        - white

      Women came out of the woodwork, even in the highly competitive online dating scene. I was up to 4 dates/week (different girls) before turning it down a notch. If my upbringing/goals were not what they are, I would have exploited the situation for longer.

      This was a very weird experience from "high school nerd" (2004) to "top of the dating food chain" (2011), while adding "divorced" to the list of traits.

      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by iamjacksusername on Monday December 15 2014, @09:45PM

        by iamjacksusername (1479) on Monday December 15 2014, @09:45PM (#126317)

        I would agree with the online dating as well. Online dating is highly competitive but having those attributes puts a person at the top of the heap. When I hit 30, it was like night and day. I am also not trying to date 20 year olds either... I am dating my peers.

          I disagree with "makes enough that the female wouldn't have to work". It is much more "you are at the same economic status or higher than many women peers" so you have met the economic selection requirement for a very large pool. I know that sounds pretty sexist and brutal but I think, once you are out of your 20s, you really start to think about what is most important to you so partner selection becomes a lot less "soulmate" and more "compatibility seeking". This is true for both men and women' just ask a woman in her mid-30s what traits she is looking for in a partner and, assuming she is not living in fantasy world, they basically come down to economically stable and similar, culturally similar, little / no emotional baggage, and not dependent on them.

        Interestingly, race is a single trait strong selector for most white women (they strongly select for white men only) but is a dual-trait strong selector for a significant minority of non-white women (they strongly select for either their own race or white men). OkCupid has a really interesting blog post about race preferences in online dating:

        http://blog.okcupid.com/index.php/race-attraction-2009-2014/ [okcupid.com]

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:33AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:33AM (#126367)

        - owns a house
            - owns a car
            - has education (MS at the time, PhD later)
            - has an interesting job
            - makes enough that the female wouldn't have to work (80+K/year)
            - has manners/caring
            - white

        Most of these are shallow and worthless. I wouldn't want to associate with anyone so superficial.

        And the "American dream" seems to be to waste lots of money on useless junk you don't need (you have to own your own *everything*, even if you don't need it) so you can impress shallow people. In other words, being a good Consumer. That's right, dear Consumer: Consume!

        - has education (MS at the time, PhD later)

        Having a degree != educated. Not having a degree != uneducated.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:36AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @02:36AM (#126382)

          It wasn't too long ago that having a husband dedicated to providing an income was a bad thing, as he did not give her enough attention, and she would end up divorcing him.

          You know, its really hard competing with the government when it comes to providing financial support for a family.

          It seems families are better off these days without the dad.

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 20 2014, @03:11PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 20 2014, @03:11PM (#127754)

            The dads are much better off without the families.

            Claim your freedom. Leave it behind.

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by GungnirSniper on Monday December 15 2014, @06:45PM

    by GungnirSniper (1671) on Monday December 15 2014, @06:45PM (#126249) Journal

    Breitbart.com has recently published The Sexodus [breitbart.com] (Part 2) [breitbart.com] about the frustrations of being male in our society, and the poorer deal in the social contract it now involves. The article rationalizes the societal retreat due to a number of factors. Here's a list that will spin the heads of every social justice warrior in the tumblr-sewer:

    • Infant boys' genitals can be mutilated for profit, but infant girls' genitals are Federally protected. [cornell.edu]
    • Primary school favors girls since the teachers are overwhelmingly female. Many boys are medicated for attention deficit disorder, as they are negatively compared to the girls by female teachers.
    • Zero Tolerance in education, which is a fear-based policy, is far more likely to lead to severe punishments for boys than girls. What would have been a home suspension is now an expulsion.
    • Teachers' Unions stand in the way of change, preferring their existing methods to more modern ones that might better connect with boys.
    • Women now earn more college degrees than men. [ed.gov] Yet many of these are in lower-paying fields like early childhood education, allowing the overall average wage by gender to remain in the men's favor. This overall average is where the 'women are underpaid' concept retains its staying power from, but when we look at specific fields, the gap is significantly narrowed. If we count career hours, it disappears entirely.
    • Women are now the predominant group in subsets of one of the largest growth industries - medicine. The average new Pharmacist is a woman, as are most Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants. [googleusercontent.com] Anything above nursing used to be strongly dominated by men.
    • As some single women become more successful, they become pickier, looking for men even more successful than they are. Yet there are fewer of those quality men available as a generation ago. As these women age, those men are going to look for younger women, so she settles for a man who can pay the bills but leaves her unfulfilled. This leads to unhappiness on both sides.
    • On the reverse side, moderately successful single men are left with the remaining supply of women. A section of those women are so used to being chased by men they do not feel the need to improve themselves, since they can easily jump to the next man.
    • Zero Tolerance sexual harassment laws are making even flirting at work into lawsuit potential. Both in and out of the workplace, it is only harassment if the woman does not find the man attractive.
    • Alcohol-influenced sex that is later regretted by the female is assumed to be the responsibility of the male, even if both were equally intoxicated. Just an allegation can lead to loss of scholarship, college expulsion, or worse.
    • Dating is a frustrating and expensive exercise for many men, particularly those who listen to what women say they want rather than what they biologically desire. Our society teaches the White Knight myth that women want a chivalrous man, but the reality is women want to be led by an irrationally confident man. [youtube.com] In dating, the nice guys do finish last. [wordpress.com] It is easier for non-dominant males to say 'fuck it' and enjoy Reddit GoneWild instead.
    • Thanks to testosterone, men are more likely to get into physical fights, as well as get injured, over women, money, and lesser things.
    • In divorce, the children are often given to the mother solely based on societal views that women are more nurturing. This can be done even with clear evidence to the contrary regarding the woman involved.
    • Thanks to domestic violence laws and restraining orders handed out based on an overabundance of caution, women have an additional weapon in their legal arsenal. I've heard of this used against a father for the crime of even attending the same school play as the mother. Though he was over 100 feet away, it was still the same room. Women apparently do not have a legal responsibility to maintain distance or move away, since the law assumes legitimate fear on the woman's part and thus she would move away automatically.
    • A woman with a restraining order can also bait a man by contacting him while the restraining order is in effect, for example to 'work things out', without being in violation herself. So if he responds to her direct attempt at conversation by one form or another, he is guilty of violation. If this were done by the police, it would stink of entrapment.
    • In many states, the marital home often goes to the parent with primary custody, so with the existing pro-female bias, the men are turned out on the streets regards of the at-fault party.
    • By the same cultural biases, it is easier for a woman to get time off to care for a sick child than a man. Or at least, the man will be looked down upon for doing so by his peers of both genders.
    • Men are much more likely to have a dangerous job and be injured or die from it. [smh.com.au] Emergency services, construction, and wood processing claim many lives.
    • Across the world, men die younger than women [wikipedia.org]. In the US, women live nearly five years longer, on average.
    • Men are also likely to more likely to successfully commit suicide [wikipedia.org] although women make more overall attempts (or 'cries for help').

    So where in this deal are the parts men are supposed to look forward to?

    A sci-fi future with redheaded sex robots, genetically-enhanced cloning, and gestation-to-birth incubators sounds pretty good. #nowomenrequired

    • (Score: 1) by mechanicjay on Monday December 15 2014, @07:00PM

      Thank You.

      --
      My VMS box beat up your Windows box.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @07:16PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @07:16PM (#126263)

      Seriously, Dude,

      Breitbart.com has recently published

      There's your problem, right there! What are you doing citing such a right-wing, reactionary, red-baiting, sexist, and anti-intellectual source? Do you think you have friends on the internet?

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @07:25PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @07:25PM (#126265)

        Would you please pick a few of those points and refute them?

        I'll also tack on to the circumcision thing. In 2012, I learned that as a culture, we'd rather circumcise infant boys (a procedure that goes wrong 1/500 times) to protect women from a sexually transmitted disease that can lead to cervical cancer than simply vaccinate both genders at age 12. That's pretty sick.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @07:27PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @07:27PM (#126267)

        Yeah, that's great! Let's not talk about any of the points in that message, just wave your hands about breitbart and everything will go away.

        Very typical extremist (in your case, left-wing extremist) stance, there. It illustrates in a very succinct way, the primary form of "argument" used by your kind.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:29PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:29PM (#126313)

          It's not a left-wing extremist stance, you cock.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:54PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:54PM (#126322)

          It illustrates in a very succinct way, the primary form of "argument" used by your kind.

          Thank you. I am not sure if you are saying, "Yes, I have no friends" or "Yes, all my friends are on the internet". Could you clarify?

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:26PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:26PM (#126312)

      Alcohol-influenced sex that is later regretted by the female is assumed to be the responsibility of the male, even if both were equally intoxicated. Just an allegation can lead to loss of scholarship, college expulsion, or worse.

      A friend-of-a-friend was charged with rape by a girl, after an encounter at a nightclub in town. My friend, a witness, was interviewed by the police, and his statement was that the girl started getting really amorous with his friend, then literally dragged him off to the toilets, and they both came back with dishevelled hair. She spent the rest of the night cuddling into the guy.

      Apparently, the next day she woke up, decided that she wouldn't have done that and it was the guy's fault and rang the police.

      This only ended well when the the girl's flatmate talked to my friend, then rang the police and explained to them that this particular girl had done this same thing at least three times previously - she goes out with her friends, gets drunk, latches onto the nearest guy, drags him off for a quick fuck, and then realizes (after she sobers up) that she wouldn't have done that if she was sober so clearly he raped her.

      The case was thrown out based on that testimony. My friend rang the police and asked them if that information would be introduced to the cases on the former complainants, to which the police responded "Only if they ask for it, otherwise no."

      Gotta get those convictions.

      In divorce, the children are often given to the mother solely based on societal views that women are more nurturing. This can be done even with clear evidence to the contrary regarding the woman involved.

      My mother was awarded custody in spite of significant evidence that she was mentally unbalanced. (See below.) She's stamped on my (then 2-year-old) head, giving me at least a moderate brain injury, she often played mind games against her children (not telling us something and then ridiculing us for carrying on with the information we had). She had a partner who was violent toward us (he'd slam me head first into walls as punishment, as a 5 year old) and did nothing to prevent it. She lied in court, lied to the police, the judge called her mad (to which her lawyer responded with "I know!"). When I was fifteen, she told me that if I "really want to get someone, get them to touch you and then punch yourself lightly on the same spot until a bruise appears."

      She set fire to my bedroom just so she could have an excuse to move out of the house, gave the local (country) cop a lie that made no sense, and he investigated no further.

      When they first divorced, she was given the house that was being paid for by my father, and she eventually sold it. I moved once a year, every year, until I was at high school, once we moved just across the road.

      The courts felt that, even with the evidence that she is a nutjob, she would look after us better than my father could have (he's a binge alcoholic).

      A woman with a restraining order can also bait a man by contacting him while the restraining order is in effect, for example to 'work things out', without being in violation herself. So if he responds to her direct attempt at conversation by one form or another, he is guilty of violation. If this were done by the police, it would stink of entrapment.

      My mother did this to my father, a number of times. I can vaguely recall one incident (my brother remembers it more clearly).

      Once, she rang him at work (not realising she had an audience) and invited him over to view some of my school work, while my brother was at pre-school.

      He got back to work to find the police waiting, who arrested and charged him for beating her up.

      In court, she turned up covered in bruises. It was discovered that she'd beaten herself up (!!) and then had him arrested for it, just to get at him. It wasn't even the first time she'd done, but the only time it was proved.

      • (Score: 2) by mhajicek on Monday December 15 2014, @11:40PM

        by mhajicek (51) on Monday December 15 2014, @11:40PM (#126346)

        You should play Binding of Isaac.

    • (Score: 1) by goody on Tuesday December 16 2014, @04:56AM

      by goody (2135) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @04:56AM (#126416)

      Yea, it often sucks to be a male.....and still most every male in the world would rather be male than female. Buck up.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:16AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @07:16AM (#126428)

      After reading that, it looks more and more like homosexuality will be the relief mechanism for my generation.

      It is a very lonely thing to go through life unloved, but the barriers to heterosexual relationships erected by lawmakers look to make same-sex companionship look much better.

      I have seen lots of YouTube videos describing how the 1 percenters are going to do away with the "eaters". I thoroughly believe the law and liability I am seeing is the result of this, as within a generation, population should begin dropping as the middle classes cease to reproduce. The government will then consist of two distinct classes - the elite, and the drones to service them, and as long as they can maintain the surveillance technologies to keep the drones controlled, it looks like the elite can continue the good life from the blood, sweat, and tears of those who have swallowed the kool-aid of debt and usury. A stable population of drones can be assured by crediting benefits to the drone-mother for each baby produced.

  • (Score: 2) by gallondr00nk on Monday December 15 2014, @06:56PM

    by gallondr00nk (392) on Monday December 15 2014, @06:56PM (#126257)

    As soon as I read the title.

    I was not disappointed.

  • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @07:26PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @07:26PM (#126266)

    I was next door to welfare court delivering paperwork. There was a fat minority lady there with 9 kids, ages about 1 year old to low teens. Gotta love those freebies when you sit home all day pumping out kids to get on welfare.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:56PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @09:56PM (#126323)

      You saw someone you assumed was a mother and made a further assumption about her lifestyle based on a visual impression, therefore it must be true!!!111oneoneone

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @11:30PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @11:30PM (#126345)

        The problem is there are people who really do this. One of my friends' mother did this, and now the friend's sister does it to some extent. Somehow I wonder my friend wasn't trans (i.e. was biologically capable of doing that) if she wouldn't be like that too. We're worried somewhat that her niece, who is a total geek, will opt for Mother as a career instead of engineer or biologist or programmer just like mommy and grandma. Working in a female-centric environment I also can't help but to overhear that so-and-so doesn't need to work a job every now and then.

        A more positive way to spin this is to look at it as the birthmother career in The Giver. Now, granted, there are some differences. Birthmothers were there to do just that and only that, and I recall after they reached about 30 they were repurposed for manual labor. I don't think the movie version touched on that.

        The larger question in my mind is how we transition to post-scarcity or at least drastically-reduced-scarcity.

        The part that's unfair about all this is that we've taken a biological function that only roughly half the population can perform, put it on a pedistal, and essentially privileged those born able to give birth. Is this fair? I don't think so.

        The solution I think is some kind of minimum guaranteed income regardless of gender that only scales up to two kids. However, along with throwing out the perverse incentives for single mothers to have an absurd number of kids (absurd unless you're a Catholic or similar, I guess), we also need to innovate some real family values, not the “family values” that is little more than a code word for homophobia, transphobia, and traditional gender roles. This process would also entail removing the female privilege of being presumed to be honest when reporting a crime and severely restricting what constitutes rape. More fairness needs to come to divorce as others have pointed out.

        Separate but equal doesn't work. Didn't work for race and it's not going to work for gender.

        But men and women are different! Well, no shit. What's between the ears is different, and there's no getting around that. The task is figuring out how to work past the differences we can't change and change the differences we can change. Women have been sexually liberated (sometimes perversely as I pointed out above), and now we need to sexually liberate men. Men aren't getting married? So what? If we were hand-wringing over women not getting married, we'd have a shitstorm out of the SJWs and feminists. As for the physical differences, I imagine that before I kick the bucket, I'll read about a trans woman being implanted with a complete female reproductive system and giving birth. Fortunately, the vast majority of people are cisgendered which makes things less complicated, but also makes separate but equal too compelling.

        (Now imagine the shitstorm if trans women are able to have children and hold out their hands to Sugar Daddy government like cisgendered women can.)

        tl;dr Just like there are deadbeat dads out there, there are deadbeat moms. The difference between the two is that we send deadbeat dads to jail while happily funding deadbeat moms. One way or another, that double-standard needs to go away. (Either pull the funding to the deadbeat moms and send them to jail like the deadbeat dads or give everyone a minimum guaranteed income. Either way, remove the perverse incentive that is destroying real family values.)

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:04AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @01:04AM (#126360)

        I lived in a low income neighborhood for a short while while learning a trade. I was pretty much the only one with a job, everyone else was on welfare, food stamps, whatever, and spending their welfare checks on booze and drugs. I tried to help some get a job, they wanted a management position or nothing, some even asking me why I work when I could do what they did. One boasted about how he has never worked a day in his life, he was 35 at the time. I went on working, bought a house far away from that shithole, and was able to retire at 55.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @08:07PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 15 2014, @08:07PM (#126278)

    There are more options available to men than in the past. Many of them superior.

    I have three friends approaching middle age that all live together. They all are college educated, don't have trouble finding work and seemingly have a never ending parade of attractive women to choose from. Instead of the traditional lifestyle they pooled resources and make their money doing low investment moderate return tasks. One writes articles online, another has a very well paying union job that only takes 15 hours a week, the last one changes so frequently that it is hard to keep track. Combined they might spend 35 hours a week working and are not at all pressed for money. They also happen to be the happiest people I know.

    Really, why should men work 60 hours at a job that could be outsourced at any time to win the affections of women that inevitably take more than they give when we can live like this now? It is becoming increasingly clear that marriage is a trap, careers are a trap, large sums of money do not bring happiness, and blind ambition towards those ends is a life not worth living.

    • (Score: 2) by dcollins on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:21AM

      by dcollins (1168) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:21AM (#126419) Homepage

      An interesting thesis. Could it be (in part) that this has always been the case -- it's just that that knowledge is easier to transmit and display, harder to miss, than it was in prior generations? In other words, the whole "How 'Ya Gonna Keep 'Em Down on the Farm? (After They've Seen Paree)" effect, where modern communications make everyone see "Paree" for free.

  • (Score: 1) by nwf on Monday December 15 2014, @08:34PM

    by nwf (1469) on Monday December 15 2014, @08:34PM (#126292)

    I remember reading his Ethnic Dining Guide when I lived in DC a while back. tylercowensethnicdiningguide.com [tylercowensethnicdiningguide.com]) Looks like he hasn't been updating it of late, too bad.

    The breakdown of the family is a more important issue for society, as is the government incentivizing people to not work by paying them to be unemployed. We get people who apply for a job and then claim unemployment when they didn't even come in for an interview. We get several per month, but there is no penalty for such behavior.

    • (Score: 2) by tibman on Monday December 15 2014, @10:00PM

      by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 15 2014, @10:00PM (#126325)

      I've been on unemployment twice. Once for a week and then again several years later for three weeks. The pay was proportional to my previous earnings. In my State the unemployment office talks directly to whoever your interview is with. If you didn't show then you don't get financial support. You are also required to apply to at least 10 different companies every two weeks and list those contacts. The unemployment office could contact those companies to verify that you applied (i don't know if they ever did though).

      I highly recommend the unemployment program. Not just for support money until you get your next job but for the contacts you will get. You'll get plenty of opportunities to get a new job if you actually want one. The State knows a lot of recruiters and contracting companies. I'm pretty well established now and probably won't ever need unemployment again.

      --
      SN won't survive on lurkers alone. Write comments.
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:05AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:05AM (#126383)

    Men don't like working for or with women.

    • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:19AM

      by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday December 16 2014, @05:19AM (#126418) Journal
      Indeed, they just prefer to globally warm the climate (like in "man made global warming")
      --
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:12PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @03:12PM (#126515)

      The ones that don't like working with women must be gay or sexist. I have no problems working with women, it seems more "intimate" as in more likely to make friends.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @04:50AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 16 2014, @04:50AM (#126414)

    Weed growers aren't counted as employed.

  • (Score: 2) by Magic Oddball on Tuesday December 16 2014, @08:17AM

    by Magic Oddball (3847) on Tuesday December 16 2014, @08:17AM (#126432) Journal

    That particular claim on Pickens' part suggests he's making things up as he goes along. Federal disability benefits have been around since the Social Security Admin was created; they've actually become a great deal harder for even a severely disabled person to get, and the version for people without a huge work history now leaves the person living in poverty. People can only go onto SSI/SSDI if they're no longer able to earn a living; it's not an option they can pick when they don't feel like working to support themselves.

    • (Score: 2) by Hairyfeet on Tuesday December 16 2014, @06:28PM

      by Hairyfeet (75) <bassbeast1968NO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday December 16 2014, @06:28PM (#126571) Journal

      Hear hear! I know a woman that has been struggling for over 5 years to get on disability and she is a perfect example of what actually happens. The judges seem to not give a fuck simply because she is overweight while ignoring the medical problems are the REASON she is overweight, like the arthritis eating her knees up so badly that even with a cane its damned hard for her to walk, and the painkillers slowing her metabolism down, add in the neuropathy and the fact that her right shoulder was obliterated when the car she was riding in was t-boned and there really isn't any job she can do but she still gets turned down over and over and has to live on a friends couch. She can't sit behind a desk as the blood flow will be constricted below the knee, the knees won't let her stand for long periods and being right handed with a right shoulder that won't hold any real weight? Damned if I can think of a job she could do for any length of time.

      If there is anybody that should get it its her, she spent her life working low paying jobs that help people like meals on wheels and driving a rehab bus for the elderly but while they'll hand it to the methhead that burned their brains up that poor woman still has to live off the charity of others, just pathetic.

      --
      ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.