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LSemmens - 26-9-2016 at 02:03

We are often heard to complain about immigrants stealing our jobs when, the reality is, we should really blame the robots

Katzy - 26-9-2016 at 10:30

Too true.

Profit over everything. :(

JackInCT - 26-9-2016 at 17:37

I would urge extreme skepticism when you see/read any, and ALL, statistics that the government has anything to do with re collecting data.

Even within a given privately held business organization, data is reduced to simplistic black and white numbers that in turn can be interpreted in a variety of ways, and that the interpreter may have absolutely no expertise in (re that segment of the business); and far, far too often the culture of the business absolutely inhibits dissent when the interpreter is a "boss" who, in a vertically structured organization, is "above/outranks the dissenter on the organization hierarchical chart. Unless you have personally ever been an attendee at an office meeting that dragged on for hours that left you wondering why no one was killed by someone who worked for the organization due to the rancor, you really can't "appreciate" how decisions are made in the real world, to include a perception that no one really knows what is going on in the business (but it's the kiss of death if they let on that they don't).

And when it comes to a private business reporting anything about their affairs to the government forget it re accuracy, never mind whether the data is skewed by some event/factor that complicates the "paperwork" that the paperwork was never designed to begin with to detect.

The best example that the posters on this board are most likely to be familiar with are the govt stats for the unemployment figures which are "cooked" to portray the job situation in the most positive light re trends, and outlook projections.

The govt has zero interest in reporting on anything to do with the huge "underground economy"/off the books/under the table, i. e., it is public policy to pretend that it doesn't exist, never mind that zero taxes are collected on it.

marymary100 - 26-9-2016 at 20:32

"Up the workers!" shout both sides.

LSemmens - 27-9-2016 at 01:25

Jack, unfortunately, in any group of people, be it, a social group, or business, the main problem is always going to be people....get rid of them, and you'll have no troubles. Of course all statistics are skewed towards whatever point is trying to be made. That is why there has always been, to quoin a phrase, "Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics".

The underground economy has always been there and will never go away, because people will never want "the man" to know their "private" business whether 'tis legal or no it's "none of their business". Back in the day much trade was done by bartering goods, now, we "barter" cash for goods.

Of course, Mary, we need to start a protest movement. I have an idea, what say all the workers go on strike to protest the loss of work to robots, heck, while we are at it, we may as well try and drag the strike out for more money and fewer working hours, that should keep us on holiday strike for a good few months....:D

Katzy - 27-9-2016 at 10:29

True enough. When you read the results of "scientific studies", it pays to find out who funded that study. They're often out simply to promote their own views and the study is often skewed.

"Clinically proven", in ads, is one that always makes me cringe. That's totally meaningless. As, indeed, are many of their claims.


JackInCT - 27-9-2016 at 15:49

Originally posted by LSemmens
The underground economy has always been there and will never go away, because people will never want "the man" to know their "private" business whether 'tis legal or no it's "none of their business". Back in the day much trade was done by bartering goods, now, we "barter" cash for goods.....

There is one reality re the existence of the underground economy that is never considered among most of the posters on this board re what they perceive as the USA's obsession with guns, and that is that the underground economy has a very large component of trafficking in stolen goods (to include shoplifting and employee theft; shoplifted merchandise can be stolen for "sale" rather than for personal use).

The most amazing thing about the underground economy is that there is no "business model" for its organization, how it "sustains" itself, and how sellers match up with buyers (and how getting caught is virtually nil).

I've never seen any stats that compares the number of legal gun owners who also have burglar alarms in their residences, but I would tend to think that many if not most do. In the same area, what is not often taken into consideration is that burglars are sometimes vandals and do a good deal of deliberate property damage (for no particular monetary gain).

Goods stolen from a residence will have to be replaced, and insurance, if any, will likely only cover part of the loss (the chances of the stolen property being recovered by the police borders on zero). That replacement can be a big expense, especially for someone already living on the "edge" financially re solvency.

What I'm saying here is that the possibility of expensive thefts escalates large numbers of people in the USA response to simply the threat of a theft, and when push comes to shove, to respond with gun violence to an intruder. So the very existence, and tolerance, for the underground economy by "ordinary" folks creates its own very widespread society wide side effects. Moral decay does not seem to resonate with a good many people, not to mention see any connection between their own behavior and gun violence.

LSemmens - 28-9-2016 at 03:44

Whilst Americans seem to think that gun ownership is their best protection, it is really irrelevant in the "underground economy" If people decide not to purchase under the table and only use legitimate means to acquire their goods, the underground economy would soon dry up. Of course, we know that is not going to happen.

Katzy - 28-9-2016 at 09:14

Oddly enough, since we moved ooop north, we've not encountered any sort of black market. It was fairly rife, back in Essex.