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  1. #1
    Banned Tennis's Avatar
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    Exclamation Laziness isn’t why people are poor

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/poste...=.06164c3b0e75

    In response to a question about his party’s plan to increase the cost of health insurance, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) suggested that people should “invest in their own health care” instead of “getting that new iPhone.” He doubled-down on the point in a later interview: “People need to make a conscious choice, and I believe in self-reliance.” Chaffetz is wrong. But he isn’t alone.

    While he has been met with justifiable derision for the comparison (Christopher Ingraham walked through the math for us, pointing out that a year’s worth of health care would equal 23 iPhone 7 Pluses in price), Chaffetz was articulating a commonly held belief that poverty in the United States is, by and large, the result of laziness, immorality and irresponsibility. If only people made better choices — if they worked harder, stayed in school, got married, didn’t have children they couldn’t afford, spent what money they had more wisely and saved more — then they wouldn’t be poor, or so the reasoning goes.


    There’s one final problem with these kinds of arguments, and that is the implication that we should be worried by the possibility of poor people buying the occasional steak, lottery ticket or, yes, even an iPhone. Set aside the fact that a better cut of meat may be more nutritious than a meal Chaffetz would approve of, or the fact that a smartphone may be your only access to email, job notices, benefit applications, school work and so on. Why do we begrudge people struggling to get by the occasional indulgence? Why do we so little value pleasure and joy? Why do we insist that if you are poor, you should also be miserable? Why do we require penitence?
    This insistence that people would not be poor if only they would try harder defines the thinking behind the signature welfare restructuring law of the Clinton era, the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act. It’s the logic at the heart of efforts to impose work requirements on Medicaid recipients, to drug-test people collecting unemployment insurance or to prevent food stamp recipients from buying steak and lobster.
    Great article here. We really need to stamp out this idea that most of the people who are poor are lazy and don't try. They're poor because the system is rigged against them. Just look at the growth in inequality and money in politics.
    Last edited by Tennis; 2017-03-22 at 01:17 AM.

  2. #2
    Deleted
    as someone with asperger I can sympathize.
    most of my problems stem from being considered lazy and careless
    Many talented people out there are poor and even homeless because they have been misunderstood.

  3. #3
    Void Lord Felya's Avatar
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    I get paid to be "lazy"... it's called optimization... get as much done as possible, with as little effort as possible...
    Folly and fakery have always been with us... but it has never before been as dangerous as it is now, never in history have we been able to afford it less. - Isaac Asimov
    Every damn thing you do in this life, you pay for. - Edith Piaf
    The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command. - Orwell
    No amount of belief makes something a fact. - James Randi

  4. #4
    Herald of the Titans Xisa's Avatar
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    People are generally poor for 2 reasons:

    -Situations they are forced into beyond their control
    -Poor decision making.

    Being lazy would qualify as the second, but there's a lot more to it than work ethic.
    I thought what I'd do was, I'd pretend I was one of those deaf-mutes
    Or should I?

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Felya View Post
    I get paid to be "lazy"... it's called optimization... get as much done as possible, with as little effort as possible...
    Do that too much, and you'll end up getting someone downsized and their duties added to yours (with no pay increase). Or vice versa.

    Let's all ride the Gish gallop.

  6. #6
    Void Lord Felya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by belfpala View Post
    Do that too much, and you'll end up getting someone downsized and their duties added to yours (with no pay increase). Or vice versa.
    Yeah, but guess who still has a job?
    Folly and fakery have always been with us... but it has never before been as dangerous as it is now, never in history have we been able to afford it less. - Isaac Asimov
    Every damn thing you do in this life, you pay for. - Edith Piaf
    The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command. - Orwell
    No amount of belief makes something a fact. - James Randi

  7. #7
    The Unstoppable Force PC2's Avatar
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    People are poor because it is the typical default nature of humans to start with zero equity. After that poorness is due to the fact that most acquired skills loose scarcity pretty quickly when there is a billion other people and finite natural resources.
    Last edited by PC2; 2017-03-22 at 02:04 AM.

  8. #8
    The Unstoppable Force PC2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by det View Post
    In many cases I would add a severe lack of education and qualification to this. (yeah, I know...the odd idiot millionaire with the killer instinct or ruthless criminal exception)
    But if everybody increases their education and qualifications it would just push the labor that is scarce higher up in performance. We should go for that, but the point is unless the natural resource gathering scales up then it wont solve the issue.
    Last edited by PC2; 2017-03-22 at 01:36 AM.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Felya View Post
    Yeah, but guess who still has a job?
    not after they figure out how to automate your job.
    Kom graun, oso na graun op. Kom folau, oso na gyon op.

    #IStandWithGinaCarano

  10. #10
    People are usually poor, because the choices they have made in life. In the case of young people, it may be the choices their parents made. Laziness happens to be just one of those choices, improper spending would be another.

  11. #11
    Correction OP - Laziness isn't the only thing that can make you poor.

    However, Laziness can definitely lead to being poor, along with ill health, poor luck, bad opportunities etc...

    Challenge Mode : Play WoW like my disability has me play:
    You will need two people, Brian MUST use the mouse for movement/looking and John MUST use the keyboard for casting, attacking, healing etc.
    Briand and John share the same goal, same intentions - but they can't talk to each other, however they can react to each other's in game activities.
    Now see how far Brian and John get in WoW.


  12. #12
    Sounds about right. I'm super lazy and pretty loaded.
    Ridicule is the only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions. -Thomas Jefferson

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Machismo View Post
    People are usually poor, because the choices they have made in life. In the case of young people, it may be the choices their parents made. Laziness happens to be just one of those choices, improper spending would be another.
    Whooops that guy fucked up a little when he was 16 when he bought that used car to fix up, then another time when he was 18 and thought student loans were what he was supposed to do. Doomed for life!

    Let's all ride the Gish gallop.

  14. #14
    The modal impoverished American is obese and spends more time watching TV than working.

    There are, of course, many exceptions, but there are a pretty significant number of people that are poor precisely because of their combination of laziness, poor impulse control, and poor judgment.

    edit - Because it's always necessary round these parts, just to be clear, I favor universal government-paid healthcare. Even if someone is lazy, has poor impulse control, and poor judgment, I would not like to let them die of trivially treatable conditions.

  15. #15
    The capitalist swine love it when the masses that are not wealthy drinks the kool-aid and brand each other as "lazy" and "not trying" rather than looking at how fucked up it is when a family can't live comfortably on 2 wages...

    Or better yet, when 1 or 2 parents have more than 1 full-time job and STILL they struggle...

  16. #16
    Deleted
    Quote Originally Posted by Rorcanna View Post
    The capitalist swine love it when the masses that are not wealthy drinks the kool-aid and brand each other as "lazy" and "not trying" rather than looking at how fucked up it is when a family can't live comfortably on 2 wages...

    Or better yet, when 1 or 2 parents have more than 1 full-time job and STILL they struggle...
    Having a job doesn't cure stupidity, watch some more lyxfällan for more information how to "#¤% your life up with a high paying job.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by vexew View Post
    Having a job doesn't cure stupidity, watch some more lyxfällan for more information how to "#¤% your life up with a high paying job.
    Indeed not, but I have yet to meet a poor person that found it to be a good idea to spend 800 euros a month on beauty products...

    I come from a family where we lived on the bare minimum for years due to recession hitting my dad's business hard. He clawed himself back and always made sure we kids had the essentials and more. Thankfully he wasn't born in a country where he'd been forced to choose between feeding us and paying rent, or sending us to school for higher education...

    My mom is... well, special, but she's worked all her life and contributed to society, supporting herself and the children living with her just fine eventually.
    Last edited by Queen of Hamsters; 2017-03-22 at 02:23 AM.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by belfpala View Post
    Whooops that guy fucked up a little when he was 16 when he bought that used car to fix up, then another time when he was 18 and thought student loans were what he was supposed to do. Doomed for life!
    Well, yes. If he took out student loans, and never bothered to get a decent job, it's on him. If he picked a crappy major, it's on him.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by belfpala View Post
    Do that too much, and you'll end up getting someone downsized and their duties added to yours (with no pay increase). Or vice versa.
    Quote Originally Posted by Felya View Post
    Yeah, but guess who still has a job?
    If that ever happens, it just means you didn't look busy enough

  20. #20
    Stupid article, no surprise.

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