Society pays tab for personal liberty

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morriswalters
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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby morriswalters » Mon Jun 06, 2016 6:04 pm UTC

As was pointed out, Muslims have banned alcohol, presumably for quite some time, so my assertion was embarrassingly wrong. As to your link, I suspect that the accounting isn't nearly so simple. Certainly hospitals have to have in place systems for bariactric patients that are expensive, which would otherwise not be needed. However I am not inclined to debate it since I can't quantify it any better than anyone else.

Tyndmyr
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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Jun 06, 2016 6:51 pm UTC

At the end of the day, end of life care is just...ridiculously huge compared to any other cost. As you age, you tend to need a lot more of it, and post retirement, that usually tends to come from some manner of social program for most people. So, if we're talking medical care, that's the elephant in the room.

It's easy to blame fraud, blame people who are careless with their health, etc. And yeah, these are real things too, but...even if you somehow solved those problems entirely(which is hardly easy!), the lion's share is still there.

And of course, if people have, directly or not, paid into a system their entire life, they do expect it to be there for them when THEY get old. Which is only natural, but....lifespan is, mostly, increasing(there was actually a recent reversal of this trend, but this is weird and unusual).

So, sure, from one perspective, anything that kills people off after they've been productive a good while, and before they get into that costly end of life care is a financial win. This includes a whole range of stuff.

This is...morally precarious when you're using it to justify withholding care from those who want it, but it makes it really, really hard to argue that we MUST protect people from things they don't want to be protected from. You need a moral case that doesn't give a crap about practicality OR individual freedom. Religion'll do it, sometimes.

DanD
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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby DanD » Mon Jun 06, 2016 7:47 pm UTC

sardia wrote:If they keep jumping into danger, do we have an obligation to save them every time? I have a harder time buying the "freedom"argument when they are forcibly spending our tax dollars on the ones in needless danger.
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/artic ... insurance/
Is actually a metaphor about flooding and perverse incentives. Why are we rescuing these people again and again? If I pulled you off the train tracks three times, isn't it about time you move your house off the tracks?


Because, as long as flood insurance exists, it isn't an unreasonable risk. However, most of the people involved are dependent on that flood insurance because a significant portion of their assets are tied up in a home that retains it's value because of flood insurance. So removing it is, practically speaking, a government "taking" under the eminent domain laws.

Also relevant is that people very rarely control the drainage area of the waterway they are adjacent to. A house might have been well out of the floodplain until a stadium was built upstream. All of a sudden, the rate of run-off is increased hugely, and a river that previously had maxed out at a flood stage of 15' is reaching 17' on a regular basis. And in order to prevent that from being a problem, your downstream neighbor, who had 16' of clearance raises their lot to 20'. And, what do you know, your 19' clearance lot, which was just fine when you bought it is now under water on a regular basis. (Note that this oversimplifies greatly. The development decisions from the entire watershed affect every point downstream of them, which is what makes it essentially impossible to assign responsibility. One person's decision to put in a basketball court in Southern New York state can affect the flood level in northern Maryland. Only a fraction of an inch, but multiply by millions of people, and thousands of road projects, and so on.)

All of that being said, it's very likely that the correct economic model is a government buyout rather than continuous rebuilding, but the immediate cost of that is higher in the short run even if it saves money in the long run. And given that the long run is longer than the next election, it's not likely to happen in most cases.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Jun 06, 2016 7:53 pm UTC

DanD wrote:
sardia wrote:If they keep jumping into danger, do we have an obligation to save them every time? I have a harder time buying the "freedom"argument when they are forcibly spending our tax dollars on the ones in needless danger.
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/artic ... insurance/
Is actually a metaphor about flooding and perverse incentives. Why are we rescuing these people again and again? If I pulled you off the train tracks three times, isn't it about time you move your house off the tracks?


Because, as long as flood insurance exists, it isn't an unreasonable risk. However, most of the people involved are dependent on that flood insurance because a significant portion of their assets are tied up in a home that retains it's value because of flood insurance. So removing it is, practically speaking, a government "taking" under the eminent domain laws.


Only if you consider the people as entitled to insurance. Which seems awkward.

I could buy that if the government created the risk, but when you have natural risks that are fairly consistent, and people are building there because of it, it's hard to justify why these people are entitled to a higher level of subsidy than any other.

Also relevant is that people very rarely control the drainage area of the waterway they are adjacent to. A house might have been well out of the floodplain until a stadium was built upstream. All of a sudden, the rate of run-off is increased hugely, and a river that previously had maxed out at a flood stage of 15' is reaching 17' on a regular basis. And in order to prevent that from being a problem, your downstream neighbor, who had 16' of clearance raises their lot to 20'. And, what do you know, your 19' clearance lot, which was just fine when you bought it is now under water on a regular basis. (Note that this oversimplifies greatly. The development decisions from the entire watershed affect every point downstream of them, which is what makes it essentially impossible to assign responsibility. One person's decision to put in a basketball court in Southern New York state can affect the flood level in northern Maryland.)


Sure. Water problems are complicated. However, the effects of flood insurance are large enough to affect even fairly unambiguous cases that are fairly longstanding. Someone rebuilding post flood on a still highly floodable area is doing so pretty directly because of the insurance. And, in the large scale, this leads to a lot of structures being constructed in less efficient areas.

Yeah, incentives do change, and not always because of the person who owns the property...but we can't really fix every example of that with insurance. We don't really expect the government to reimburse every resident of Detroit for poor housing values, do we?

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby DanD » Mon Jun 06, 2016 8:09 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:
DanD wrote:
Because, as long as flood insurance exists, it isn't an unreasonable risk. However, most of the people involved are dependent on that flood insurance because a significant portion of their assets are tied up in a home that retains it's value because of flood insurance. So removing it is, practically speaking, a government "taking" under the eminent domain laws.


Only if you consider the people as entitled to insurance. Which seems awkward.

I could buy that if the government created the risk, but when you have natural risks that are fairly consistent, and people are building there because of it, it's hard to justify why these people are entitled to a higher level of subsidy than any other.


The issue is that the government created the lack of risk by creating the flood insurance in the first place. And people bought or built with that lack of risk in place. So taking it away creates a new risk. And typically the people who would be hurt by removing it are far removed from those who assumed it in the first place.


Also relevant is that people very rarely control the drainage area of the waterway they are adjacent to. A house might have been well out of the floodplain until a stadium was built upstream. All of a sudden, the rate of run-off is increased hugely, and a river that previously had maxed out at a flood stage of 15' is reaching 17' on a regular basis. And in order to prevent that from being a problem, your downstream neighbor, who had 16' of clearance raises their lot to 20'. And, what do you know, your 19' clearance lot, which was just fine when you bought it is now under water on a regular basis. (Note that this oversimplifies greatly. The development decisions from the entire watershed affect every point downstream of them, which is what makes it essentially impossible to assign responsibility. One person's decision to put in a basketball court in Southern New York state can affect the flood level in northern Maryland.)


Sure. Water problems are complicated. However, the effects of flood insurance are large enough to affect even fairly unambiguous cases that are fairly longstanding. Someone rebuilding post flood on a still highly floodable area is doing so pretty directly because of the insurance. And, in the large scale, this leads to a lot of structures being constructed in less efficient areas.

Yeah, incentives do change, and not always because of the person who owns the property...but we can't really fix every example of that with insurance. We don't really expect the government to reimburse every resident of Detroit for poor housing values, do we?


No, but if it were possible to make the auto companies pay for the poor decisions that drove down the value of housing, I would love to be able to do it. As far as I'm concerned, and no, it's not a libertarian perspective, one of the purposes of government is to enforce regulations and responsibility for externalities, and to do what is needed to compensate for them when they can't. This is one of the reasons why new large scale construction is regulated to be drainage neutral.

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sardia
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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby sardia » Mon Jun 06, 2016 8:35 pm UTC

Don't forget the political dimension here. The government could easily say flood insurance only pays if you rebuild away from the flooded area. The reason it doesn't is the people who get flooded are demanding they stay. The view by the waters edge is as beautiful as it is dangerous. That beauty is what draws so many people(who vote often) there in the first place.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby morriswalters » Mon Jun 06, 2016 8:48 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Don't forget the political dimension here. The government could easily say flood insurance only pays if you rebuild away from the flooded area. The reason it doesn't is the people who get flooded are demanding they stay. The view by the waters edge is as beautiful as it is dangerous. That beauty is what draws so many people(who vote often) there in the first place.
Very true. People often discount the "but I don't want to" effect, and the political basis thereof. And then there is the reality that most human habitation is near some waterway. However building codes can and often are changed to mitigate some of the worst of the damage.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Jun 06, 2016 8:54 pm UTC

DanD wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:
DanD wrote:
Because, as long as flood insurance exists, it isn't an unreasonable risk. However, most of the people involved are dependent on that flood insurance because a significant portion of their assets are tied up in a home that retains it's value because of flood insurance. So removing it is, practically speaking, a government "taking" under the eminent domain laws.


Only if you consider the people as entitled to insurance. Which seems awkward.

I could buy that if the government created the risk, but when you have natural risks that are fairly consistent, and people are building there because of it, it's hard to justify why these people are entitled to a higher level of subsidy than any other.


The issue is that the government created the lack of risk by creating the flood insurance in the first place. And people bought or built with that lack of risk in place. So taking it away creates a new risk. And typically the people who would be hurt by removing it are far removed from those who assumed it in the first place.


Every change in governmental policy alters existing risks. It's the nature of it.

There's a certain risk inherent in assuming that a given governmental subsidy will continued unchanged indefinitely. Government basically always changes eventually, and I note that when people do it in a corporate context, it's usually regarded as rent-seeking, etc.

But...corporations, are, in the end, only made up of people. It's not really so different when individuals do it.

No, but if it were possible to make the auto companies pay for the poor decisions that drove down the value of housing, I would love to be able to do it. As far as I'm concerned, and no, it's not a libertarian perspective, one of the purposes of government is to enforce regulations and responsibility for externalities, and to do what is needed to compensate for them when they can't. This is one of the reasons why new large scale construction is regulated to be drainage neutral.


The entire problem with poor decisions leading to economic failure is that once you've gotten to the point of failure, resource extraction will always be kind of pointless. You can no more extract resources from a bankrupt company than you could bill the property owner for the cost of insuring their home. The whole *point* of an insurance scheme is to spread the costs to others.

sardia wrote:Don't forget the political dimension here. The government could easily say flood insurance only pays if you rebuild away from the flooded area. The reason it doesn't is the people who get flooded are demanding they stay. The view by the waters edge is as beautiful as it is dangerous. That beauty is what draws so many people(who vote often) there in the first place.


Ideally, there'd be some kind of gradual changes and phase-out. Long term, designated flood areas should eventually be given fairly limited support.

I dare say that people who can afford oceanfront property, etc are likely to wield outsized political influence, though. And of course, the people who benefit most from such insurance are those who have larger, nicer homes. 'tis the nature of it. The image sold is of the hapless person affected by a freak accident, but the reality of what the money is spent on includes a lot of vacation homes, second homes, etc owned by the fairly well to do. Sure, the former totally does happen, but I'd wager the latter is a pretty strong reason for why it exists.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby leady » Tue Jun 07, 2016 9:18 am UTC

of course its also very possible to construct housing that is resistant to flooding, but its fair to say that most people gamble on the aesthetics vs practically.

Me? I made sure I was a good few meters above the local water level :)

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby elasto » Tue Jun 07, 2016 10:03 am UTC

Maybe that's the way to phase it out then: Have a 'one-strike-and-you're-out' policy: If you get flooded, government-backed insurance will pick up the tab once and once only; Any rebuilt property must be flood resistant by law, and thereafter will be insured on the open market only.

This allows for situations where houses built in areas that were once safe but through no fault of the owner have come to be at risk, but not permit repeat offenders.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby leady » Tue Jun 07, 2016 10:34 am UTC

Won't work because humans don't do risk properly, we are far too cautious for things that are overtly gambling and far too optimistic for things that are long shots. Basically you'll just get news footage of families wading through their living rooms and the thing all falls apart politically.

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Diadem
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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Diadem » Tue Jun 07, 2016 10:45 am UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:I could buy that if the government created the risk, but when you have natural risks that are fairly consistent, and people are building there because of it, it's hard to justify why these people are entitled to a higher level of subsidy than any other.

People have to live somewhere.

Not everybody can live in the perfect location. Some people have to live in suboptimal locations. To compensate for this, we try to make those locations less suboptimal. We build highways to remote areas, we build protections against flooding and tornadoes and other natural hazards. Flood insurance is just another extension of that.

Calling it a subsidy is disingenuous. I'm sure those people living in high-risk areas would love to live in a low-risk area. Are you volunteering to move out so they can move in? Or do you think we should all live in tiny apartments in 20 floor building with the only view from the balcony being other 20 floor buildings? The person living in the low-risk area is as much to blame for the flood risk as the person living in the high risk area. Remove either one and the risk will disappear.
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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby elasto » Tue Jun 07, 2016 11:18 am UTC

leady wrote:Won't work because humans don't do risk properly, we are far too cautious for things that are overtly gambling and far too optimistic for things that are long shots. Basically you'll just get news footage of families wading through their living rooms and the thing all falls apart politically.

Not sure what you mean.

Buildings in the US already have building codes, right? You can't just build it however you like. eg. The wiring must be up to scratch so people don't get electrocuted.

You simply have a more stringent building code for dwellings being rebuilt with government cash: If the plans don't meet the requirements, the government never hands over the cheque.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby sardia » Tue Jun 07, 2016 1:57 pm UTC

Diadem, if the US has anything to spare, it's space. The densest city is 1/10 of the highly packed global cities.

Tyndmyr, the biggest difference with libertarians is that a libertarian wouldn't mandate an eviction nor help with the aftermath. Though given the difficulties passing legislation, I'm not surprised at the solutions that are akin to libertarian ones. If we remove support for flood insurance, it exposes a failing of libertarians. They wouldn't help people move.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby DanD » Tue Jun 07, 2016 2:22 pm UTC

elasto wrote:Maybe that's the way to phase it out then: Have a 'one-strike-and-you're-out' policy: If you get flooded, government-backed insurance will pick up the tab once and once only; Any rebuilt property must be flood resistant by law, and thereafter will be insured on the open market only.

This allows for situations where houses built in areas that were once safe but through no fault of the owner have come to be at risk, but not permit repeat offenders.


The problem is that most flood payouts are far less than a complete rebuilding, let alone the cost of flood proofing. Hypothetically, if I buy a house that then gets flooded, most likely I can't afford to build a house that is 3x as expensive (not an atypical jump for flood-proofing, probably a bit high for relocation, but not much). So the government can choose to assume the one time cost of moving the individual (or rebuilding in a flood proof manner), or multiple much lower costs of cleanup and repair work. Yes, the former is the logical and cheaper thing to do in the long run, but democratic governments (all governments, really) tend to be a little short sighted about costs.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby DanD » Tue Jun 07, 2016 2:37 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Diadem, if the US has anything to spare, it's space. The densest city is 1/10 of the highly packed global cities.

Tyndmyr, the biggest difference with libertarians is that a libertarian wouldn't mandate an eviction nor help with the aftermath. Though given the difficulties passing legislation, I'm not surprised at the solutions that are akin to libertarian ones. If we remove support for flood insurance, it exposes a failing of libertarians. They wouldn't help people move.


Not really. There are several very small "cities" in NJ that are about half as dense, not 1/10. And NYC as a whole is about 1/4 of Manilla, the densest (and about 1/2 if you look at "Metro Manilla"). Manhattan, on the other hand, would be #9 in the world if it were a stand alone city rather than a part of the larger area.

Yes, if you look at the "greater metropolitan area" then LA ranks as about 1/10th as dense as Mumbai, but the numbers fall off quickly from there.

And I would suggest, without, admittedly solid facts to back it up, if you look at the NYC-DC corridor, you'll find a higher average density than any similar area in the world, possibly excepting the Ganges river valley.

ETA: Okay, maybe not, but it's in the top 10.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby leady » Tue Jun 07, 2016 2:41 pm UTC

elasto wrote:
leady wrote:Won't work because humans don't do risk properly, we are far too cautious for things that are overtly gambling and far too optimistic for things that are long shots. Basically you'll just get news footage of families wading through their living rooms and the thing all falls apart politically.

Not sure what you mean.

Buildings in the US already have building codes, right? You can't just build it however you like. eg. The wiring must be up to scratch so people don't get electrocuted.

You simply have a more stringent building code for dwellings being rebuilt with government cash: If the plans don't meet the requirements, the government never hands over the cheque.


sorry I was referring to the "one strike" (or rather two strikes to fix the analogy) solution. Basically major flooding events in a flood risk area are a one in fifty year thing, so people think "it will never happen again". Unfortunately once in a life time events happen a lot to a sub set of people. Normally they seem to live in Cumbria in the UK :)

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby jseah » Tue Jun 07, 2016 3:17 pm UTC

DanD wrote:And I would suggest, without, admittedly solid facts to back it up, if you look at the NYC-DC corridor, you'll find a higher average density than any similar area in the world, possibly excepting the Ganges river valley.

ETA: Okay, maybe not, but it's in the top 10.

This is where I refer to where I grew up, Singapore! 5 million people on an island 50km across. (at present, 700+ sq km area, which also includes all the industrial and commercial space)
We still manage to have significant amounts of green space...

Just saying that high densities are quite achievable. Why, thirty story apartment buildings are completely normal to me! =P

I must admit that most western cities feel really flat to me. The only ones I've visited that came close to what I'm used to is Shanghai and Hongkong and then only in the downtown areas. If it isn't ten stories high, it's flat.
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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue Jun 07, 2016 4:05 pm UTC

Diadem wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:I could buy that if the government created the risk, but when you have natural risks that are fairly consistent, and people are building there because of it, it's hard to justify why these people are entitled to a higher level of subsidy than any other.

People have to live somewhere.

Not everybody can live in the perfect location. Some people have to live in suboptimal locations. To compensate for this, we try to make those locations less suboptimal. We build highways to remote areas, we build protections against flooding and tornadoes and other natural hazards. Flood insurance is just another extension of that.

Calling it a subsidy is disingenuous. I'm sure those people living in high-risk areas would love to live in a low-risk area. Are you volunteering to move out so they can move in? Or do you think we should all live in tiny apartments in 20 floor building with the only view from the balcony being other 20 floor buildings? The person living in the low-risk area is as much to blame for the flood risk as the person living in the high risk area. Remove either one and the risk will disappear.


Disingenuous how? What do you think "subsidy" means?

And no, it isn't the case that people are being forced into Oceanside homes, because no other options exist. Many of these are owned by quite well to do people, with other options, who enjoy the view and advantages of being Oceanside. In many years, these are actually the dominant cost of this particular program. I think there's something to be said for insuring truly unusual disasters, where the risk is great, but the occurrence is very rare(and these incidents DO mostly hit poor people, who are more concerned with frequent risks for obvious reasons). However, the current program doesn't target that well.

sardia wrote:Tyndmyr, the biggest difference with libertarians is that a libertarian wouldn't mandate an eviction nor help with the aftermath. Though given the difficulties passing legislation, I'm not surprised at the solutions that are akin to libertarian ones. If we remove support for flood insurance, it exposes a failing of libertarians. They wouldn't help people move.


They don't HAVE to move. They just have to pay their own bill. Now, a transition program of some sort probably makes sense, but libertarians tend to be focused on the longer view. Once the transition has been made.

Me, I'd be satisfied with adjusting the program so it's more focused on genuine natural disasters hitting poor areas, and less subsidizing rich vacation homes. Save a bunch of money, get closer to a libertarian ideal, society gets more efficient...actual downsides are fairly few.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Dr34m(4+(h3r » Sat Jun 11, 2016 9:21 pm UTC

All I can think of in these situations is that cowards are whining because they're too stupid to take advantage of an opportunity. The United States is obsessed with, hell practically founded on risk-taking bordering on degenerate gambling. As a consequence, a huge number of policies are based around essentially encouraging this behavior, whether in the form of encouraging small businesses (95% of which fail within 5 years), promoting forms of athleticism that are detrimental to health via scholarships and subsidized sports stadiums, lionizing and protecting the financial industry at the cost of the nation and all sense, encouraging the poor to fight in foreign wars for college tuition, or hell, pushing college itself as a solution to anything at this point, in addition to countless other examples. All of you idiots complaining about motorcycles are just angry that it's not something you would do, you don't seem to give a flying fuck about the fact that what's being described is part of a broader, uniform cultural obsession which so defines the state of life in the United States that you undoubtedly benefit from it in countless ways; at least in the short term. But hey, like Keynes said, in the long run we're all dead, and besides that, ALL of these costs are externalized, so even when it comes time to pay most of them you're probably not paying a fair share.

Shut the fuck up.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Neil_Boekend » Mon Jun 13, 2016 10:14 am UTC

Dr34m(4+(h3r, there is no need to be rude. You may feel that others need to pay for the risks you take, not everyone feels that way. That's why it is a discussion. By all means, don't participate if you don't like it.
Dr34m(4+(h3r wrote:All I can think of in these situations is that cowards are whining because they're too stupid to take advantage of an opportunity.
Not too stupid. Not everyone likes to make the rest of their country pay for their stupidity. It's called basic decency. And yes, people missing that do sometimes get very rich because it is a limit on profit. By the way, not being a psychopath is also profit limiting.
Dr34m(4+(h3r wrote:The United States is obsessed with, hell practically founded on risk-taking bordering on degenerate gambling. As a consequence, a huge number of policies are based around essentially encouraging this behavior, whether in the form of encouraging small businesses (95% of which fail within 5 years), promoting forms of athleticism that are detrimental to health via scholarships and subsidized sports stadiums, lionizing and protecting the financial industry at the cost of the nation and all sense, encouraging the poor to fight in foreign wars for college tuition, or hell, pushing college itself as a solution to anything at this point, in addition to countless other examples.
A. Not everyone here lives in the USA.
B. Does this privatizing profits and socializing costs strike you as a good idea, country wide?
Dr34m(4+(h3r wrote: All of you idiots complaining about motorcycles are just angry that it's not something you would do, you don't seem to give a flying fuck about the fact that what's being described is part of a broader, uniform cultural obsession which so defines the state of life in the United States that you undoubtedly benefit from it in countless ways; at least in the short term.
I think that people should pay for the costs their choices cause plus their share in accidental costs that are caused. Any cost. Including medical costs. But I mean any costs, so including end of life support (that is going to be relatively minor in dead-on-impact motorcycle accidents, compared to an 80 year old dying slowly). But I mean any costs including those caused by CO2 emission, which is significantly less for motorcycles than for cars.
Dr34m(4+(h3r wrote: But hey, like Keynes said, in the long run we're all dead, and besides that, ALL of these costs are externalized, so even when it comes time to pay most of them you're probably not paying a fair share.
I don't only care for the short term. I care for the long term too. And I don't care I'll be dead in the long term, I want to leave the world a better place than I found it.
Dr34m(4+(h3r wrote:Shut the fuck up.
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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Diadem » Mon Jun 13, 2016 11:27 am UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Disingenuous how? What do you think "subsidy" means?

And no, it isn't the case that people are being forced into Oceanside homes, because no other options exist. Many of these are owned by quite well to do people, with other options, who enjoy the view and advantages of being Oceanside. In many years, these are actually the dominant cost of this particular program. I think there's something to be said for insuring truly unusual disasters, where the risk is great, but the occurrence is very rare(and these incidents DO mostly hit poor people, who are more concerned with frequent risks for obvious reasons). However, the current program doesn't target that well.

No doubt some of the people who live in areas at risk of flooding are rich people who could live somewhere else but chose to live there. But if you're going to claim that this is a majority, I'd like some evidence on that. If I recall correctly then Katrina hit mostly poorer neighbourhoods. So that's already a major datapoint against.

And it's not a subsidy because it's something that benefits everybody equally. If you're going to call that a subsidy you might as well call spending on police or courts a subsidy, and the term loses all meaning.
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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Dr34m(4+(h3r » Mon Jun 13, 2016 12:50 pm UTC

Neil_Boekend wrote:Dr34m(4+(h3r, there is no need to be rude. You may feel that others need to pay for the risks you take, not everyone feels that way. That's why it is a discussion. By all means, don't participate if you don't like it.


What I "feel" is that those of us in the United States live in a political economy that subsidizes risks of countless stripes, but that conversations about "making people pay for the risks they take" are essentially always dictated by class. The rich take fully subsidized risks at the cost of billions in other people's money and it's spun as unfortunate but necessary via arguments like "too big to fail". A poor person wants to (or perhaps doesn't want to and simply just does) ride a motorcycle, and hey look, target of opportunity. Plus they're a filthy poor, probably white trash or a gang banger.

Neil_Boekend wrote: Not too stupid. Not everyone likes to make the rest of their country pay for their stupidity. It's called basic decency. And yes, people missing that do sometimes get very rich because it is a limit on profit. By the way, not being a psychopath is also profit limiting.


The country makes specific classes of people pay for the country's stupidity constantly. That seems far more psychotic to me, but apparently isn't because of pure semantics. Risk taking isn't inherently a debit on an empty account.

Neil_Boekend wrote:A. Not everyone here lives in the USA.
B. Does this privatizing profits and socializing costs strike you as a good idea, country wide?


A. This topic was opened with an article, which begins
For better or worse, the United States tries to let people take risks as long as they do not interfere with others.

B. No, but I believe consistency is an important value, and consequently oppose piecemeal reforms in general, which tend to only have the effect of making the legal and economic situation more uneven and biased.

Neil_Boekend wrote: I don't only care for the short term. I care for the long term too. And I don't care I'll be dead in the long term, I want to leave the world a better place than I found it.


*shrug* I want to maximize my own personal happiness, which is extremely difficult because I'm starting out at a massive deficit. But the good news is that deficit was caused by society, which means I'm justified in taking from society.

Neil_Boekend wrote:No.


Wow. Bravo. What courage.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Jun 13, 2016 4:01 pm UTC

Diadem wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:Disingenuous how? What do you think "subsidy" means?

And no, it isn't the case that people are being forced into Oceanside homes, because no other options exist. Many of these are owned by quite well to do people, with other options, who enjoy the view and advantages of being Oceanside. In many years, these are actually the dominant cost of this particular program. I think there's something to be said for insuring truly unusual disasters, where the risk is great, but the occurrence is very rare(and these incidents DO mostly hit poor people, who are more concerned with frequent risks for obvious reasons). However, the current program doesn't target that well.

No doubt some of the people who live in areas at risk of flooding are rich people who could live somewhere else but chose to live there. But if you're going to claim that this is a majority, I'd like some evidence on that. If I recall correctly then Katrina hit mostly poorer neighbourhoods. So that's already a major datapoint against.

And it's not a subsidy because it's something that benefits everybody equally. If you're going to call that a subsidy you might as well call spending on police or courts a subsidy, and the term loses all meaning.


Look back at my claim. Truly unusual disasters do hit mostly poor people. IE, Katrina. You have shown evidence for my claim, not against it. Overall, the fact that it benefits people that are wealthier than average is decently well studied. One such paper is available at http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2549320

It doesn't benefit everyone equally, because people who own beachfront property are not distributed equally. They're a pile wealthier than average. They also have more expensive homes than average. So, in practice, this ends up being a pretty regressive program to subsidize beach homes. It's pretty hard to sell that as an equal benefit for all.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Neil_Boekend » Mon Jun 13, 2016 4:17 pm UTC

Dr34m(4+(h3r wrote:
Neil_Boekend wrote:Dr34m(4+(h3r, there is no need to be rude. You may feel that others need to pay for the risks you take, not everyone feels that way. That's why it is a discussion. By all means, don't participate if you don't like it.


What I "feel" is that those of us in the United States live in a political economy that subsidizes risks of countless stripes, but that conversations about "making people pay for the risks they take" are essentially always dictated by class. The rich take fully subsidized risks at the cost of billions in other people's money and it's spun as unfortunate but necessary via arguments like "too big to fail". A poor person wants to (or perhaps doesn't want to and simply just does) ride a motorcycle, and hey look, target of opportunity. Plus they're a filthy poor, probably white trash or a gang banger.

Completely ignoring the point that it has not been proven that motorcycling is actually more expensive to society than not motorcycling: I am entirely comfortable with rich people being able to do stuff that poor people don't. For example flying a private jet and having caviar for breakfast every day. I am completely uncomfortable with them getting tax breaks (the ridiculous trickle down "theory") or getting bailouts for the results of their own greed. "To big to fail" sounds fishy at best.
Dr34m(4+(h3r wrote:
Neil_Boekend wrote: Not too stupid. Not everyone likes to make the rest of their country pay for their stupidity. It's called basic decency. And yes, people missing that do sometimes get very rich because it is a limit on profit. By the way, not being a psychopath is also profit limiting.

The country makes specific classes of people pay for the country's stupidity constantly. That seems far more psychotic to me, but apparently isn't because of pure semantics. Risk taking isn't inherently a debit on an empty account.
In a way the country is the responsibility of the people. So the people are responsible for it's mistakes. The people chose the government. So, by proxy, they chose the policy. BTW: here in the Netherlands the rich bear the brunt of the taxes so they also bear the brunt of the mistakes.
Dr34m(4+(h3r wrote:
Neil_Boekend wrote:A. Not everyone here lives in the USA.
B. Does this privatizing profits and socializing costs strike you as a good idea, country wide?


A. This topic was opened with an article, which begins
For better or worse, the United States tries to let people take risks as long as they do not interfere with others.

B. No, but I believe consistency is an important value, and consequently oppose piecemeal reforms in general, which tend to only have the effect of making the legal and economic situation more uneven and biased.
Piecemeal changes have the advantage that the impact is much less. For example the corn subsidies in the US. The US has so much corn they make sugar out of it, despite that making no economic sense if you ignore the subsidies. However, if a government would end the subsidies with a warning time of a year there would be a lot of farmers that had equipment only suitable for farming corn that would just have lost their investment. They'd starve because they have built their lives on the subisidies. So if the USA were to lower those subsidies, they'd have to do it piecemeal.
I would also prefer that a government would be able to say "this change will be implemented in 15 years. Prepare for it now" but it is one of the disadvantages of a government that can change every 4 years. I think it's more important to be able to kick a government off their spot for other reasons, but it has disadvantages. Is that what you mean?
Dr34m(4+(h3r wrote:
Neil_Boekend wrote: I don't only care for the short term. I care for the long term too. And I don't care I'll be dead in the long term, I want to leave the world a better place than I found it.


*shrug* I want to maximize my own personal happiness, which is extremely difficult because I'm starting out at a massive deficit. But the good news is that deficit was caused by society, which means I'm justified in taking from society.

What has society done to you that caused said deficit? (if the answer is in your other posts here and you don't want to explain it again then you can tell me to read those.)
Mikeski wrote:A "What If" update is never late. Nor is it early. It is posted precisely when it should be.

patzer's signature wrote:
flicky1991 wrote:I'm being quoted too much!

he/him/his

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Jun 13, 2016 4:25 pm UTC

Neil_Boekend wrote:Completely ignoring the point that it has not been proven that motorcycling is actually more expensive to society than not motorcycling: I am entirely comfortable with rich people being able to do stuff that poor people don't. For example flying a private jet and having caviar for breakfast every day. I am completely uncomfortable with them getting tax breaks (the ridiculous trickle down "theory") or getting bailouts for the results of their own greed. "To big to fail" sounds fishy at best.


Precisely. Go do your thing. But YOU pay for it, not me.

And I've always considered the argument of "too big to fail" to be...very convenient. And thuggish. Kind of like mentioning "oh, by the way, ya'll are my hostages, so you HAVE to do what I want". It's pushing implied threats, sort of.

At that point, one wonders why, if the claim is true, such a situation should continue to exist. And if the claim is false, then surely, we should also not bail them out. In the short term, sure, the bailout makes the problem go away...for now. But it's not so very different from paying protection money. The problem will arise again, and you will be in the same position then. In the long term, subsidizing the rich seems....costly.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby sardia » Mon Jun 13, 2016 5:13 pm UTC

The issue with doing your thing and paying for it is people usually pay for the risk free version. Say you went hiking and got lost. How do we price the rescue cost in? Leave you to die because principles? I don't hear many libertarians signing Do Not Rescue Contacts when they head outside. I'm actually curious how many libertarians accept flood insurance(and the inherent subsidy).
Alternate example did the libertarian pay for global warming?

Expanding this principle outwards seems to lead us to conflict of interests, revolving door regulatory capture, etc etc. Doesn't really seem libertarian.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Jun 13, 2016 6:59 pm UTC

sardia wrote:The issue with doing your thing and paying for it is people usually pay for the risk free version. Say you went hiking and got lost. How do we price the rescue cost in? Leave you to die because principles? I don't hear many libertarians signing Do Not Rescue Contacts when they head outside. I'm actually curious how many libertarians accept flood insurance(and the inherent subsidy).
Alternate example did the libertarian pay for global warming?

Expanding this principle outwards seems to lead us to conflict of interests, revolving door regulatory capture, etc etc. Doesn't really seem libertarian.


Billing people for their rescue, particularly when it happens due to negligence, is totally a thing that does currently happen. Happens elsewhere too, not just a US thing. This is not something libertarians generally have a problem with or seek to change. If they got ludicrous, implausible amounts of power, they might eventually get around to standardizing things(like removing the near-universal free pass for stupidity rescues in national parks), but frankly, it doesn't make any lists for cleanup because it's pretty trivial compared to most actual government issues.

Flood insurance is not popular. http://beforeitsnews.com/libertarian/2012/11/national-flood-insurance-is-insane-2469804.html It's a pretty easy target because it's a fairly good example of government incentives ruining the market. Plays extremely well into the libertarian narrative.

Global Warming is tougher for most ideologies, I think. Libertarianisms, minus those who are still in the denial stage, generally believe that people should be required to pay for their bit of the damages. How, exactly, you measure what those damages are, and properly arrange payment is of course, the difficult bit. Not really much different from other parties there, I think. Frequently, they advocate some sort of Cap and Trade schema as a way of getting market economics to set the prices. However, the global nature, and the difficulty of getting other countries to cooperate remains an issue. No magic bullet there.

Not really sure what principle you're seeing that requires revolving door regulatory capture.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby sardia » Mon Jun 13, 2016 8:09 pm UTC

Things get awkward when you have libertarians creating a large regulatory framework in order to capture the minor damage individuals or groups of people cause via carbon. The fines issued for reckless behavior rarely match the cost of the rescue. It's more a deterrent effect, hence why the IRS spends a lot to retrieve a few thousand from a scoff law. It's a warning to others.

I was saying libertarians seem ill equipped to deal with issues of regulatory capture and conflict of interests due to revolving door lobbyists. Not that we have much to go with besides the Hodge podge of libertarianish ideas the GOP provides.

PS is Gary Johnson the only mainstream libertarian? It's one thing to go after the drug war or subsidies to wall Street, but when you go after education and poor people, it seems threatening or selfish.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon Jun 13, 2016 10:04 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Things get awkward when you have libertarians creating a large regulatory framework in order to capture the minor damage individuals or groups of people cause via carbon. The fines issued for reckless behavior rarely match the cost of the rescue. It's more a deterrent effect, hence why the IRS spends a lot to retrieve a few thousand from a scoff law. It's a warning to others.


Libertarians have not, I think, created an overly large regulatory framework. They simply haven't had the power to even try.

That said, I think even given implausible degrees of power, the current volume of regulation/effectiveness at stopping global warming seems...not great. It would be difficult to do worse.

PS is Gary Johnson the only mainstream libertarian? It's one thing to go after the drug war or subsidies to wall Street, but when you go after education and poor people, it seems threatening or selfish.


With any sort of presidential appeal, yes. McAfee keeps wanting in, but he's bugfuck crazy, and having a recognizable name doesn't really make up for that.

Bit of a party blow up regarding Johnson recently. Long story short, lot of the party thinks he's kind of a dick. It's awkward, because he's kind of the public face, but he's about as beloved among libertarians as Romney was among Republicans for the last go-round. Stuck with him, but a lot of people really wish they had a better option.

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Re: Society pays tab for personal liberty

Postby MWak » Tue Aug 09, 2016 9:08 am UTC

From the original post:

Second, few people are capable of accurately weighing the benefits against such unfamiliar risks as inability to breathe unassisted or suffering locked-in syndrome because of a brain injury, so it’s difficult to say thrill seekers are taking fully “informed” risks.


A preposterous argument in my estimation. Sure it's true, we likely all have tremendous blind spots in estimating costs such as described above, but it's also true that we can't say for certain the BENEFIT that thrill seekers gain from say, skydiving or some such. The thrill-seekers, in aggregate, are also part of society. If they are extremely happy seeking thrills they may be contributing a net positive to total social well-being even if some of them incur great costs on themselves and/or for society.


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