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Uber Capping Prices During Snowmageddon 2015

LoyalOpposition Re:So what will this accomplish? (152 comments)

So you presume that if we agree on the value of everything under the Sun, all trade will cease, and we'll just all lay down and starve to death because we are only willing to trade if we think we're getting a great deal?

Nope.

For example, if you believe your income to be stable and sufficient for your needs, there is no need to value a sandwich more when you're hungry than when you're not.

Sure there is.

The whole concept is irrational.

You think that because you misunderstand 'value.'

Even if there everybody agrees on value, there is still demand, because humans have real needs, and specialization is a thing.

It's not possible for everyone to agree on value because it's not possible to compare how much I value something versus how much you value that something. It's only possible to compare how much I value one thing versus how much I value another thing, and it's only possible to do that because of the exchanges you see me make. What it's possible for everyone to agree on is price.

Trade is not based on presuming a lopsided value exchange,

Sure it is. It's either that or coercion.

it is based on the reality of variable skills

Are you trying to discuss the Law of Absolute Advantage, the Law of Comparative Advantage, and Division of Labor?

and availability of resources.

Well, you're covering supply pretty well, but you're missing demand and, by implication, desires.

Economics uses all sorts of logical tools and technology that are not believed to be literally true or accurate; they're just believed to be useful in certain circumstances.

Agreed.

Demand obviously predated economics, because primitive trade isn't based on "how we allocate scarce resources." The most basic trade is just two people, without any system of allocation.

If Oog trades two beaver pelts to Moog for a spear and forty-eight grams of wheat, then the scarce resources that have alternatives uses is two beaver pelts, a spear, and forty-eight grams of wheat; and the allocation is a spear and forty-eight grams of wheat to Oog, and two beaver pelts to Moog. If someone, like, say, Loog, studies that then we have economics. Now, the actual study came after the exchange, but that's only because we can't study the future; we can only study the present and the past.

As for defining "demand," just use wikipedia:...

Ah! Then I didn't misunderstand the concept of demand, and you were wrong when you said I did.

Without willingness and ability to pay, no economy could exist.

Sure it can. If a mugger demands someone's wallet at gunpoint then an exchange has taken place and we can study it using the science of economics.

Economic systems weren't invented by some guy who thought it up and everybody said, "oh, good idea" and started doing it.

Sure it was.

Barter existed for long periods before economies did.

Bartering is one type of economic exchange.

Many animals engage in basic barter, without any system of exchange or valuation.

I wonder which economists study that.

The trade has to exist before it becomes systematic, which is a requirement for it to be an economy.

I think you misunderstand the concept of economics.

~Loyal

yesterday
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Uber Capping Prices During Snowmageddon 2015

LoyalOpposition Re:So what will this accomplish? (152 comments)

The buyer and seller generally agree on the value of both the item, and the money.

No. Buyer and seller agree on a price. It's not generally possible to know how much buyer and seller value either the item or the money.

I think you misunderstood the concept of "demand."

I'm pretty sure I don't.

I'll give you a hint: it existed before money or economies.

I agree that demand existed before money. Economics is how we allocate scarce resources that have alternative uses, so it's not possible for demand to predate economics. I tell you what--how about you spell out what I think demand is, and what it really is using a widely recognized definition from the science of economics?

~Loyal

2 days ago
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Uber Capping Prices During Snowmageddon 2015

LoyalOpposition Re:only trying to help? (152 comments)

Free market guarantees shortages that is it's function.

Shortages? What do you mean? If you mean scarcity, then scarcity isn't guaranteed by the free market. Scarcity is guaranteed by finite resources applied to infinite desires. If you really mean shortages, which economics defines as a lack of goods or services at the offered prices, then the free market comes closest to guaranteeing a lack of shortages. In fact, command economies do the best at producing shortages of the two types of economic organizations.

~Loyal

2 days ago
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Uber Capping Prices During Snowmageddon 2015

LoyalOpposition Re:So what will this accomplish? (152 comments)

Just a thought experiment for you here involving gouging...

That's a good question. Several things will happen. (By the way, I think some of your limitations are counter-factual, but whatever.) If surges in demand are frequent then it will pay speculators to put in a stock. Then when the surges happen they will release the stock, smoothing out the price fluctuations and gaining a profit from their efforts. Nut suppliers will receive increased demand (from nut consumers and speculators) and will respond by increasing production, admittedly long-term. Shippers will respond to the sudden price increases by going to Brazil and importing nuts from there. Pecan and hazelnut vendors will advertise the suitability of their products as a substitute for nuts, and some consumers will respond by taking the substitutes instead of insisting on nuts. Some of the less-suitable nuts (off-color, small) will no longer be thrown away but will be used by the nut-consuming public. Some of the nuts used for Nut-ella and other products will not be used for those products, but will be sold directly to the consumers in the form they are demanding. Nut users will use fewer, as in using five nuts in a chef salad from their former practice of using six nuts. Some nut consumers will decide that they don't desire nuts as much as they desire the money spent on nuts and will forgo the product.

~Loyal

2 days ago
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Uber Capping Prices During Snowmageddon 2015

LoyalOpposition Re:Damn, nannies are hypocritical idiots (152 comments)

But there is empirical evidence that it doesn't cause much of a decrease, and less harm to employment rates than economic theory would predict.

The card and Krueger study used a seriously flawed methodology, as did many subsequent studies. They studied fast food places over two years. Fast food places that were created the second year weren't considered, and fast food places that went out of business the second year weren't considered. Since most businesses go out of business within two years of being started, this is a serious omission. Using the same methodology I can prove that no one was killed on death row. Send out a survey the first year asking whether you are still alive. Send surveys to those responding in the affirmative the first year to those same people the second year asking whether you are still alive. Discard non-responses. Voila! Capital punishment is de facto eliminated.

~Loyal

2 days ago
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Uber Capping Prices During Snowmageddon 2015

LoyalOpposition Re:So what will this accomplish? (152 comments)

Econ 101 yes.

Oh, good! You've studied economics and are going to make an insightful comment!

However during cases of emergencies, demand may not be rational, as the value of their currency is less than the value they are trying to protect.

Oh, crap. That didn't last long. The value of things is the basis of every voluntary exchange. If the exchange is for money, then the buyer values the money less than he values the thing he buys, and the seller values the thing he sells for less than he values the money he gets.

In short during an emergency people need to focus on the short term and not the long term. So Supply vs Demand breaks down, as the value of money, is only as valuable as everyone agrees it is. However during an emergency, its value drops to the practical value of the paper,coin, plastic.

Supply vs. demand doesn't break down! Supply vs. demand is still working the same as ever. The amount demanded at a given price is equal to the amount supplied at that price. If I have to buy a ride to save my life then I value the money the same as I did before, or nearly so. What happens is that the amount I value a ride goes up tremendously.

That is why there are anti-gouging laws.

No, there are anti-gouging laws because it costs politicians little or nothing to pass them and gains them much in terms of votes and donations. There are anti-gouging laws because the high price of rides during an emergency startles riders and fills newspapers, and people don't realize that the shortages in rides after the laws are passed are caused largely because of the anti-gouging laws. People blame greedy drivers or greedy grocers or greedy gasoline station owners and never seem to see the greed in politicians or riders or consumers. Of course I want a ride that I value extremely highly, and I want to pay with very little money. Of course that's not greedy. In fact, let me have everything and give very little in return. It's only because of all your greedy bastiches that I don't get it.

~Loyal

2 days ago
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Uber Capping Prices During Snowmageddon 2015

LoyalOpposition Re:only trying to help? (152 comments)

Exactly my point. They are only trying to make money for themselves, and if exploiting a disaster make them more money, they will do that. Yet here we have people (like the OP) trying to claim that they are 'ensuring there are enough drivers'. Bullshit

Let me see...I can get out in this snow, go several extra blocks, pick up someone I don't know and drive them somewhere. I could get 2.8x. Or I could stay in next to this fire, drink this rum & coke, and call in 'sick' today. Screw it. Sorry, Uber--not available.

~Loyal

2 days ago
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Fields Medal Winner Manjul Bhargava On the Pythagorean Theorem Controversy

LoyalOpposition Re:Umm, no. (187 comments)

I'm a moron too. I can't see how your string method assures right angles? Please enlighten me.

Yeah, me too. I keep getting a rhombus.

~Loyal

about two weeks ago
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Gunmen Kill 12, Wound 7 At French Magazine HQ

LoyalOpposition Re: islam (1350 comments)

Anarchy is a system in which trade, industry, the means of production, as well as security, politics, and basic rights are largely or entirely privately owned and operated for profit.

rsilvergun's original claim was that capitalism is anarchy. My claim was that some non-anarchys are capitalistic. Your counter-claim is that all anarchys are capitalisms. Your claim, even if it were true, doesn't refute mine. It's like saying that since all fish live in the water, everything that lives in the water is a fish. It ignores, for example, mollusks and anemones.

~Loyal

about three weeks ago
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Gunmen Kill 12, Wound 7 At French Magazine HQ

LoyalOpposition Re:islam (1350 comments)

... and as we saw during the great depression, a significant percentage of elderly people would be dying in the street in poverty because a capitalistic society cares about profit, and nothing else. There's a number of things Marx wrote about that, while fervent fascists dismiss them as ridiculous, we can actually see them in society. Its like these complete idiots still suggesting that their trickle-down voodoo bullshit economics "should" works, when all we have to do is look at the last 30+ years to see not only it's an abject failure, but it creates far more problems than it was supposed to solve.

So...you agree with what I wrote?

~Loyal

about three weeks ago
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Gunmen Kill 12, Wound 7 At French Magazine HQ

LoyalOpposition Re:islam (1350 comments)

No. With no fiat currency, there's no real possibility to assemble large companies owned by lots of owners (that's capitalism per se). You are mixing the concepts of market economy with those of capitalism.

Here's what Wikipedia has to say about capitalism: Capitalism is an economic system in which trade, industry, and the means of production are largely or entirely privately owned and operated for profit.

Here's what Merriam Webster has to say: an economic system characterized by private or corporate ownership of capital goods, by investments that are determined by private decision, and by prices, production, and the distribution of goods that are determined mainly by competition in a free market

Here's what Yahoo! has to say: An economic system in which the means of production and distribution are privately or corporately owned and development occurs through the accumulation and reinvestment of profits gained in a free market.

Although all three sources allow for the existence of large companies and many owners, none of them require it. Therefore, capitalism doesn't require banking. Even if capitalism did require large companies and many owners, which it doesn't, those can exist without banking. And even if large companies and many owners did require banks, which they don't, banks don't require fiat currency. Furthermore, if I'm conflating the market with capitalism then so are Merriam Webster and Yahoo!. I think it much more likely that you are the one confused.

~Loyal

about three weeks ago
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Gunmen Kill 12, Wound 7 At French Magazine HQ

LoyalOpposition Re:islam (1350 comments)

Wrong - it requires faith in the banking system.

Capitalism doesn't require faith in the banking system. It doesn't require a banking system. It doesn't even require money. Capitalism could exist in a barter-based economy.

~Loyal

about three weeks ago
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Gunmen Kill 12, Wound 7 At French Magazine HQ

LoyalOpposition Re:islam (1350 comments)

Many concepts that Marx promoted were implemented in Capitalistic societies, for example old age pension.

If there existed two societies that were identical in every way except that one had an old-age pension supplied by government while the other one didn't, then the one that didn't would be more capitalistic that the one that did. Socialistic practices are often implemented in otherwise capitalistic societies.

~Loyal

about three weeks ago
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Gunmen Kill 12, Wound 7 At French Magazine HQ

LoyalOpposition Re: islam (1350 comments)

Capitalism doesn't require faith to work because it's basically anarchy.

Capitalism isn't anarchy. Capitalism is an economic system in which trade, industry, and the means of production are largely or entirely privately owned and operated for profit. So long as government allows private individuals to trade and engage in industry and the means of production, and allow them to have their profits or losses then capitalism exists.

The "invisible hand" Is basically a nice way to say you're leaving things to chance...

The 'invisible hand' is not a way of saying you're leaving things to chance. The 'invisible hand' is a way of saying that allowing people to trade according to terms mutually beneficial to themselves often promotes the benefits of society, even when promoting benefits of society wasn't among their motivations.

~Loyal

about three weeks ago
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Court Orders Uber To Shut Down In Spain

LoyalOpposition Re:Unlicensed taxi broker (280 comments)

That's the kind of logic that would agree with the right of people to sell themselves as slaves,

There are a number of flaws with your argument, but I would like to take this opportunity to mention only one--it's too powerful. You might ask what's wrong with having a powerful argument, but I'm not claiming that it's cogent or that its subject matter is wide ranging. I'm claiming that it proves many conclusions that you really don't want to prove. Let me get into specifics.

Allowing people to buy from farmers' markets is like letting them sell themselves as slaves. People need to buy from places that have paid government USD100.000 for the license.

Allowing people to marry whom they choose is like letting them sell themselves as slaves. People need to pay USD100.000 for the license to marry.

Allowing people to buy newspapers is like letting them sell themselves as slaves. Media need to be licensed by the government before they can disseminate their information.

~Loyal
 

about a month and a half ago
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Court Orders Uber To Shut Down In Spain

LoyalOpposition Re:Greasing Palms. (280 comments)

Where I live, the cabs are regulated. In my memory, additional regulations have been imposed on them. They protested, but ultimately got told "too damned bad".

Regulation is no panacea and can be a plague. Many regulations cure a non-existent problem. Some regulations are viewed by the regulated industry as a barrier to entry, and that keeps their competition low. And there's always the problem of regulatory capture.

Yes, it's a very lucrative thing, and people pay huge amounts of money for the taxi plate.

That's one of the largest barriers to entry. When licenses are less a certification that the industry meets minimum requirements and more an arbitrary limit to the number of competitors then the value of the license goes really high, and the competitors are able to keep prices artificially high.

But they're not some all powerful taxi cartel which secretly calls the shots. The taxi industry is not the fucking illuminati.

See also: regulatory capture.

I think the entire premise (which as far as I can tell comes from Uber) of this stupid narrative of Uber being the underdogs fighting the big entrenched players is a crock of shit.

How do you explain the fact that the entrenched players are the ones who are fighting Uber, rather than people who have been injured by Uber's failings?

This is about a company who has decided they have an app and a business model which allows them to bypass existing regulations which are applied to all in that industry.

...and the people who want to hire them. Don't forget about them.

They quite publicly are just a scheduling service for unlicensed cabs. That's it. They're not some noble entity fighting the good fight.

It appears to me that it's possible for an entity to be both, simultaneously. Someone could be fighting the good fight and at the same time be a scheduling service for unlicensed cabs.

They're a company who has decide that magical elves and unicorn dust means they can pretend that laws don't apply to them. Based on what, I have yet to understand -- I've heard their spokespeople saying "well, we're not a taxi company, we're just a technology company, so the law doesn't apply". Really? How's that?

Fanciful comparisons aside, maybe Uber is right. You have certainly not refuted their arguments in your post.

So, whatever this romanticized notion of Uber is, it seems like garbage to me. If you want to be a cab company, you are covered under the regulations of a cab company.

Do you hold any opinions on scheduling companies?

But if you think some sophistry and misdirection makes you not a cab company, you're either delusional, or just hoping to hoodwink enough people to sway public opinion.

Well, I think I'm not a cab company. And I begin to suspect you are one. Whatever--let me say this; one man's hoodwink is another man's political activism.

So blah blah blah Uber and the evil all powerful taxi cab cartel.

Ooooh! So close you nearly convince me.

Sorry, you're a commercial vehicle for hire, and covered under all applicable laws and regulations, whether you like it or not.

You know--when I went to Uni I gave my roommate rides from his home to the campus. I charged him half the cost of petrol. I suppose I should have paid USD100.000 for a shield.

~Loyal

about a month and a half ago
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Court Orders Uber To Shut Down In Spain

LoyalOpposition Re:Unlicensed taxi broker (280 comments)

Ultimately Uber is a broker for unlicensed taxi. There should be a restriction on unlicensed taxi on the roads. In other words, I'm surprised they exist anywhere. They really shouldn't, there are very good common sense reasons for insisting on licensed taxi.

I think that really should be the choice of the person choosing which taxi service to use. If four members of Seal team 6 decide to save a few bucks, risking the chance that the driver is going to attack the four of them, then they should have that choice. If Uber, or anyone, wishes to provide a service screening potential drivers, and if they are successful enough (read--as successful as standard taxi services, or nearly-so,) then they should have that choice. If soccer mom decides that Uber is safe enough for her concerns then she should have that choice. Frankly, this looks to me like a blatant attempt by the standard taxi companies to keep competition out of the market.

Apropos of nothing, I note that you wouldn't use such a service, so you're suggesting a law that wouldn't affect your choices, but which would keep other people from being able to make theirs.

~Loyal

about 1 month ago
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As Amazon Grows In Seattle, Pay Equity For Women Declines

LoyalOpposition Re:Here we go again (496 comments)

Welcome to LIFE 101. Humans have kids, if your business runs on such thin margins that you cant account for that, YOU HAVE NO BUSINESS HIRING EMPLOYEES, period. Humans have babies, it MUST be accounted for. If you are running your business without accounting for this, then you are a shitty human.

Thereby proving Archangel Michael's point about political correctness. Just to be clear, are you saying that it's much more acceptable for people to be unemployed than for employers to pay more for their more valuable employees?

~Loyal

about 2 months ago
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As Amazon Grows In Seattle, Pay Equity For Women Declines

LoyalOpposition Re:Here we go again (496 comments)

What other reasons? dumbass.

Strangely, among other reasons women are much more likely than men to require maternity leave. I have no idea what that stems from.

~Loyal

about 2 months ago
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Reactions To Disgusting Images Predict a Persons Political Ideology

LoyalOpposition Re:Liberals are Egoistical Maniacs (330 comments)

Or do you hold a double standard--interpreting "pro life" quite broadly, but interpreting "pro choice" very narrowly?

FTFM

~Loyal

about 3 months ago

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