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7 hours ago, Nicky said:

I'm stating that, by building a wall in the path of innocent people who wish to pass, you are initiating force. How is this not obvious to you?

How is it obvious to you which people are innocent and which are not?

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43 minutes ago, Grames said:

How is it obvious to you which people are innocent and which are not?

It isn't obvious.  It's only obvious when someone is convicted (and even then mistakes are possible).  What I wonder is what's the difference between an American and an illegal immigrant that one gets to be here and the other doesn't by law.  What's the distinguishing characteristic that makes it legal and right for the American to be inside our borders but not the illegal alien.  

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19 minutes ago, Craig24 said:

It isn't obvious.  It's only obvious when someone is convicted (and even then mistakes are possible).  What I wonder is what's the difference between an American and an illegal immigrant that one gets to be here and the other doesn't by law.  What's the distinguishing characteristic that makes it legal and right for the American to be inside our borders but not the illegal alien.  

The government's job is protecting rights and the persons that have them.  The government scrutinizing newcomers is one means of accomplishing that.  The illegal alien has evaded that scrutiny.  In brief, the illegal alien has entered the country without the consent of the government, and the government is the proxy and agent acting on behalf of its citizens.  The illegal alien has obtained a value, his physical presence in this country, by circumventing the rational judgement of the citizens already here.  This is an initiation of force.  It does not matter that the judgement would probably, or should have been, to let him in if he had come in legally.  Regardless of whether the moral decision in any particular immigrant's case is to let him in or not the decision is not his to make.

As for Americans already here their citizenship status establishes their right to be here.   The equivalent of the decision to let and immigrant in or not is the making of the law that establishes citizenship for residents.  Birthright citizenship is the current practice in America supplemented with a naturalization process but it could be some other method.  

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3 hours ago, Grames said:

... The illegal alien has obtained a value, his physical presence in this country, by circumventing the rational judgement of the citizens already here.  This is an initiation of force.  It does not matter that the judgement would probably, or should have been, to let him in if he had come in legally.

But, this is simply false. A huge majority of illegal immigrants are illegal because if they had asked they would not have been allowed to come it. 

If this was based on the rational judgement of the citizens already here, I'd be against it; but, it is based on the irrational judgement of the citizens here. Under current law, most foreigners have practically no legal way of coming to the U.S. to work.

[The law is so crazy that some people who are allowed in to study at Yale and Harvard, people who have their Masters in some scientific field and want to work as researchers, are told they have to try for an annual lottery, which can mean they don;t get lucky for a year or two. Of course, these folk don't come in illegally. The illegals are people ho are told the country does not want them working here... the government making the decision, rather than employers.]

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3 hours ago, Grames said:

The illegal alien has obtained a value, his physical presence in this country, by circumventing the rational judgement of the citizens already here. 

This doesn't make sense. What I mean is, if I let someone onto my land, it should be that it's up to me who is let on that land, provided that the illegal isn't actually someone who initiated force (e.g. a wanted arsonist) and not a national security threat. Even if 90% of the population doesn't like the person. You seem to be defining "the country" as some amount of shared property where the people by voting decide who to let on the property.

And what do you mean protecting rights of a person that has them? You don't seem to mean "right" like a "right to vote", but more like individual rights in totality.

I agree that walls in general are okay, but I fail to see where legal entry is needed for the right to be here. There may be a good point in there. It's a stupid policy though that Trump has, for protectionist ends. Fine if you want people to be fair to Trump, but he literally makes no effort to explain his position. It's really just "ALL I'M SAYING IS COME IN LEGALLY" but failing any and all attempt at reform.

 

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1 hour ago, Eiuol said:

It's a stupid policy though that Trump has, for protectionist ends. Fine if you want people to be fair to Trump, but he literally makes no effort to explain his position.

Have you missed Trumps repeated calls for a lower business tax, and the ending of a regionally-based government-protected health care system?  Have you missed his repeated calls for a tax-exempt health care savings account (similar to the one advocated by the founder of Whole Foods ((who is an admirer of Ayn Rand))?  As a developer, do you really think that Trump is in favor of government protected collective bargaining Union based Davis Bacon wage rates which add an additional 20% to the cost of  construction of his projects?

Trump has a line of clothing and home furnishings that are manufactured in foreign countries.  He would be negatively impacted by any "protectionist" legislation.  He is not calling for "protectionism".

Eiuol, why do you think that American manufactures cannot compete with Mexico, China, Bangladesh, India, etc.?  Have you bought into the lobbyists/focus group based narrative that we live in a "Post Industrial" economy or an "Information Based" economy?

Add Edit:  Have you also missed Trumps repeated calls for an end to the war on Energy that  Obama has engaged in since his election?  Trump want's to eliminate the EPA's policy which makes it impossible for coal based energy generation plants to be feasible.  All in the name of the pseudo-science/religion "global warming".

Edited by New Buddha
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25 minutes ago, softwareNerd said:

Primarily because foreign labor in those countries costs about a tenth of what it cost in the U.S.

And why does it cost a 10th?  Because of excessive taxes and regulations.

Any notion that NAFTA is an expression of laissez-faire free market capitalism is laughable.  Anyone who believes so is blind.  Anyone who believes that it wasn't crafted by special interests, lobbyists, crony-capitalists should have their right to vote revoked. 

Edit: We need to make huge legislative, pro-business reforms, and renegotiate the trade deals which are leeching manufacturing jobs out of the US.  Trump understands this.  And he is not owned by lobbyists, wall street and special interests.

We are truly living in the age of the "Aristocracy of Pull".

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16 minutes ago, New Buddha said:

And why does it cost a 10th?  Because of excessive taxes and regulations.

The per capita GDP of the US is about $50K.

In order to make cross-country comparisons economists compute a "Purchasing Power Parity" GDP figure for other countries. This adjusts the other countries GDP, based on the prices there. So, the earning of an Indian worker earning less than a US worker would be adjusted up if he can buy onions and bread etc. cheaper in India. Using this PPP method, the per capita GDP in China is about $7K and in India it is about $2K. Third world countries have a lower class in extreme poverty, so these ratios might exaggerate the situation if we just want to consider factory-workers. Nevertheless, there's a significant differential: the US worker gets at least 3 times the Chinese and 10 times the Indian. 

When people immigrate to the U.S. they come for the higher wages -- real wages, real standard of living. 

The labor-cost differential is not primarily about regulation. It is about people eating less well, using far less energy, fewer clothes, bare-bones education, less infrastructure, smaller and less-maintained homes in more crowded neighborhoods, and so on. 

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But do foreign countries require health care?  And do they protect health care providers and pharmaceutical companies from competition?  Health care is the second largest expense behind wages in the US.

Do foreign governments tax their manufacturers as much as the American government taxes American businesses?  Do they subsidize their manufactures?  Do they engage in currency manipulation?  Are foreign governments also waging a war on energy?  Is China shutting down their coal plants?

Edit:  Do foreign countries require business to pay unemployment insurance?  And Social Security?

You seem to be making the case that the state of US manufacturing is independent of legislation.  That the disparity between countries is not influenced by anti-business practices by the government.

Edited by New Buddha
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6 minutes ago, New Buddha said:

But do foreign countries require health care?

Compared to poor countries, the U.S. does impose many extra costs like social-security and so on. If the government did not, these costs would not disappear. For instance, health costs would not disappear. They would be less, and added to wages, with the employee paying out. Anyhow, I do not dispute such costs.

My point is that the reason manufacturing jobs have gone abroad in such large numbers is primarily because the workers abroad are poor and willing to work for relative peanuts. 

Sure, the U.S. imposes costs that make the differential worse, but labor intensive jobs are not coming back. Even if you fast-forward three decades and the cost differentials have narrowed, the jobs are not coming back. The production might come back, but not the jobs. The production will increasingly be automated as foreign wages rise, and when the differential closes, and production returns, it isn't going to need many factory workers. Its the same story in agriculture: the U.S. is a mammoth in agricultural production, but agricultural jobs are a small fraction of what they used to be.

Is this "post Industrial"? Well, call it anything, the point is the world will continually seen ever more production. Yet, it will see ever less factory-workers. 

As for trade-deals, the criticism of them is mostly wrong. On balance, trade deals are far better than the other politically-acceptable alternatives that preceded them.

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Buddha, by protectionist I am referring to focusing on bringing all foreign economic forces to heel premised on the idea that this will necessarily make an economy better. Tariffs are something he supports. And sure, lowering taxes in the US is part of that. As for his health care plan, I don't know about it really.

Indeed, he'd hurt his businesses with protectionist legislation - he's not a good businessman. He probably has a scheme in mind, or he might not care because he'd be president. About unions, who knows his real thoughts, he doesn't mind adding costs if it gets his way, including going to the mafia for help. Trump is a dishonest man, all evidence points to it, and it's a terrible sign that he doesn't read books. He probably literally doesn't know the economic impact of his own ideas.

I don't care about American manufacturing really, no idea why you brought it up.  

The rest, no idea why you brought those up. Global warming is still real, it's realness has nothing to do with proper policy anyway. Anyway, that might be one thing I agree with him about, to get rid of some EPA regulations. Doesn't change his intention to be protectionist. 

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35 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

Indeed, he'd hurt his businesses with protectionist legislation - he's not a good businessman. He probably has a scheme in mind, or he might not care because he'd be president. About unions, who knows his real thoughts, he doesn't mind adding costs if it gets his way, including going to the mafia for help. Trump is a dishonest man, all evidence points to it, and it's a terrible sign that he doesn't read books. He probably literally doesn't know the economic impact of his own ideas.

Louie, you do not have any understanding of development, period.  You are not an architect, engineer, contractor or developer.  Have you looked at his company?  The Trump Organization. 

Can you develop a proforma?  Do you know about asset depreciation? Do you know how to leverage equity?  Do you understand the entitlements process?  Can you execute contracts between consultants and contractors?

Your "cartoon" understanding of Trump says far more about your lack of knowledge and real world experience than it does about Trump.

Edited by New Buddha
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Then enlighten me about his great business practices. I'm primarily aware of all his failed ventures and multiple bankruptcies. I am also aware of his lack of intellect in general, disinterest in reading. There are ways to make money besides actual business ability.

The rest is about me, not Trump. I'm sure he knows how to go about doing business, doesn't mean he's wise or has foresight. 

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As I understand it, Trump has had six bankruptcies.

But what you need to understand is that each and everyone of his developments is a stand-alone, Limited Liability Corporation (LLC).

Trump will target a property and attract 3rd party investors to generate enough capital (more or less 30%) in order to secure a bank loan for the remainder (70%) of the construction cost.  After construction, the loan is rolled into a long term loan.  The goal is to generate more revenue with the property than the cost of the loan.  This is what he means when he says the he is the "King of Debt".  If you generate a 5% return on a 3% loan, then you are making money.  However, all along, the property is generating EQUITY.  Equity is the name of the game in development.  Equity is used to secure capital for new developments.

Of the properties shown in the link, Trump probably owns varying percentages.  He may own 5%, 10%, etc., but the majority owners are the banks.

Some properties do fail.  This is unavoidable.  It happens for a variety of reasons.  Some due to excessive government costs, some to down turns in the economy, some to just basic mistakes on the part of the developer.  And yes, he has taken advantage of the bankruptcy laws in the US.   But many small business also fail multiple times before they succeed.  Banks who invest in businesses understand the risk.  One of the first things I learned from a developer is that a developer should be the "third one in", meaning that the development should have failed twice before you pounce on it.

I could go on and on, but I won't.  Trump is not an idiot.  He is not a good communicator or public speaker, and he DOES talk like he's on a job site -- but I don't hold that against him.

Edit:  You do have to have a big fucking ego to be a developer.  One of my favorites is a very wealthy ex pro football player.  You have to tell him the same thing 10 times before he hears you, and even then he doesn't take no for an answer lightly.  And you may have to way 6 months to a year before you get paid, because he is shopping for a loan. But he is the Fountainhead of the project.

Edited by New Buddha
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2 hours ago, softwareNerd said:

...is primarily because the workers abroad are poor and willing to work for relative peanuts. 

The reason that you think that they are working for "peanuts" is because we have a 20 trillion dollar debt.  The only manufacturing taking place in the United States is in the Treasury Department.

Edit:  And if I need to spell if out for you, we are manufacturing fiat money.

SoftwareNerd, you seem to believe that everything is hunky dory in America.  Is that true?  Can we just over look the fact that servicing the debt in soaking up an every increasing percentage of the tax revenue? 

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7 hours ago, softwareNerd said:

But, this is simply false. A huge majority of illegal immigrants are illegal because if they had asked they would not have been allowed to come it. 

If this was based on the rational judgement of the citizens already here, I'd be against it; but, it is based on the irrational judgement of the citizens here. Under current law, most foreigners have practically no legal way of coming to the U.S. to work.

I will attempt to add clarity.  It does not even matter if in a particular individual case that the judgement would probably, or should have been, to let him in if he had come in legally, much less all the cases of denied entry.  What does matter is the answer to the question "who gets to decide?"  

"Rational judgement" broadly does not imply correctness or even being fully informed.  It is wrong to coerce people to do the right thing because all coercion is wrong in principle.  

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7 hours ago, Eiuol said:

This doesn't make sense. What I mean is, if I let someone onto my land, it should be that it's up to me who is let on that land, provided that the illegal isn't actually someone who initiated force (e.g. a wanted arsonist) and not a national security threat. Even if 90% of the population doesn't like the person. You seem to be defining "the country" as some amount of shared property where the people by voting decide who to let on the property.

The entire premise of a legal system is objective rules, and objective rules means no private, personally motivated legal decisions.  Some legal decisions are no longer yours to make unilaterally and deciding who enters and who is excluded from the country is one of them.  This is necessary because excluding someone requires physical force, and permitting someone to enter requires not using that same force, so those responsible for employing that force need to be informed in both cases.  

I wrote "The government's job is protecting rights and the persons that have them  "because rights are not entities in the primary sense, they are attributes of entities, persons.   They are actually fairly abstract moral conclusions attributed to persons, not ordinary attributes like height, weight, hair color etc.  An attribute can not be protected apart from the entity that possesses it, much less an abstract attribute such as a political right.  The flip side to Rand's principle that only physical force can violate rights is that only physical force can protect rights.   Simply being able to identify when physical force is being used (a wall, a firearm) doesn't tell you if it is right or wrong.

Of course government intervention should only be motivated by the need to protect rights and not just "to protect people" from any danger to which they may choose to expose themselves.   

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3 hours ago, Grames said:

The entire premise of a legal system is objective rules, and objective rules means no private, personally motivated legal decisions.  Some legal decisions are no longer yours to make unilaterally and deciding who enters and who is excluded from the country is one of them.

"The country"? Eiuol was speaking of letting someone enter his property. (I guess we could imagine that Eiuol owns a parcel of land which sits adjacent to what would otherwise be a "national border.") But you would say that the President, or Congress, or "the people," have some right to tell Eiuol that he is not allowed to make this decision?

Why should third parties get any say-so at all as to the business Eiuol conducts on his land, or the people who choose to transit there with Eiuol's approval -- by what right? How are your wishes -- concerning his property -- more important than his own?

3 hours ago, Grames said:

This is necessary because excluding someone requires physical force, and permitting someone to enter requires not using that same force, so those responsible for employing that force need to be informed in both cases.

"Entry" in this sense is not the initiation of the use of force, however "excluding," is. Because you call a vote and some majority of people (wherever they are, themselves, situated) say "folks south of this imaginary line in the sand may not travel north of it," that doesn't mean that the people south of that line are morally bound to observe such a decree, or that the decree itself is morally defensible.

We may only restrict that which is, in itself, a use of force: we cannot create initiations of force through fiat, that simply disagreeing with our dictates is therefore a forceful act. It is only through rationalization that we would be able to say that the agreed-upon entry of some "foreigner" onto Eiuol's property is an initiation of force. There is no force in the action itself.

But if we move to stop Eiuol and this "illegal alien" from their otherwise peaceful business, then we have initiated force against them both, and acted in the wrong.

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18 hours ago, Grames said:

How is it obvious to you which people are innocent and which are not?

I'm not going to go through the whole list of legal principles that allow us to establish guilt or innocence.

3 hours ago, Grames said:

The entire premise of a legal system is objective rules 

The premise of a legal system is individual rights.

When you pretend to believe in individual rights, but reserve the right to arbitrarily stop people from working in the US, you're not being objective.

Edited by Nicky
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6 hours ago, Grames said:

 What does matter is the answer to the question "who gets to decide?"  

The majority do not get to decide anything and everything, and still retain a claim to morality. Of course, we might have a law that is good and moral and the decision maker may still fail to apply it correctly. That happens all the time, and good law has processes to counter it: e.g. appeals. Even such processes can get it wrong, but its the best one can do without changing the law. This is the argument for "rule of law".

However, the majority is not free to enact any laws and processes they like, and still claim morality. 

In my state, a 20 year old can vote but cannot legally drink. If someone like Trump starts proposing stricter laws to claim down on under-21 drinking, I would not support him. Rather, I'd support a politician who wants to change the law. 

Current immigration laws are far more immoral than any under-age drinking law could ever be, far more immoral that complete prohibition of alcohol. Changing these laws is the only way to start. Enforcement cannot be the primary (moral) focus when we consider the current immigration laws.

Edited by softwareNerd
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6 hours ago, Grames said:

I will attempt to add clarity.  It does not even matter if in a particular individual case that the judgement would probably, or should have been, to let him in if he had come in legally, much less all the cases of denied entry.  What does matter is the answer to the question "who gets to decide?"  

"Rational judgement" broadly does not imply correctness or even being fully informed.  It is wrong to coerce people to do the right thing because all coercion is wrong in principle.  

Ok but what I and others are having trouble with is the claim that an alien crossing the border of my country without the knowledge or permission of my government is an initiation of force against me and other citizens.  How is it an initiation of force?  What action does his entry prevent me from taking that you think I had a right to take?  

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Buddha, I can agree that he isn't too bad at real estate development. It doesn't make him intellectually competent at economics and other areas, or how economics affects his properties. Things like his "university" failed, and that one is covered in shady practices. Good for him that some of his development projects paid out pretty well. He still just hasn't shown really any knowledge about economics, nor does he even read books to gain more knowledge. He's out of his element when it comes any area besides real estate as far as I see.

You are right that small businesses could fail multiple times. All that means is some business owners are better than others. I'm wondering, how does Trump's number of bankruptcies compared to other developers who have made similar or more money than him?

 

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1 hour ago, Eiuol said:

Buddha, I can agree ...

An important point in my post is that the majority of the money behind his construction loans (and permanent financing) is   money lent by banks.  Banks don't just give a developer money.  They very carefully scrutinize the health of the organization, the track record of successful developments and the assets that he owns.  Banks also track every single penny spent on a project.  I have personally spent hours with bank examiners reviewing invoices generated in the course of construction. A developer has to have a good track record and/or reputation or no one will do business with him.  This is true for the architects, engineers and contractors as well.  If they don't trust him, they won't touch his projects with a 10 foot pole.  I know it sounds old fashioned, and certainly not something understood by the Left, but a business man's reputation is everything.

If you see a restaurant close it's doors after 2 or 3 years, you need to realize that the restaurant is probably defaulting on a 10 year lease that could be worth millions to the developer/property owner.  I'm certain that this happens to Trump all the time - people who lease parts of his commercial developments go out of business leaving Trump with defunct leases.  He may try and recover some of the money, but he pretty much just has to write-off the loss and shop for a new tenant.

Edited by New Buddha
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4 hours ago, Nicky said:

I'm not going to go through the whole list of legal principles that allow us to establish guilt or innocence.

The premise of a legal system is individual rights.

When you pretend to believe in individual rights, but reserve the right to arbitrarily stop people from working in the US, you're not being objective.

None of the legal principles that allow us to establish guilt or innocence can be applied to someone who sneaks across the border to evade examination.  How is this not obvious to you?

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