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Lindsey Kuper

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Hey, I know what we should do. [Sep. 12th, 2005|05:17 am]
Lindsey Kuper

Artificially raise the price of gas to $10 a gallon. Use the extra money from that to subsidize employers so that the minimum wage can be upped to $10 an hour. Okay, so there's some flaws to be worked out, but I bet you a beer that if we did that, in ten years we'd have less poverty and more passenger rail.

Speaking of placing bets on the future, I was reading about Long Bets earlier, which I found from a column about online prediction markets. Huh. Y'know, besides being farmers, my parents are commodities brokers, and my dad's tried to explain futures and options trading to me, but I've never quite been able to grok it. After reading that column, though, I feel like I have a better handle on things.

Isn't it funny that online fantasy futures make sense to me, but the farm commodities futures my dad deals in are too abstract for me to understand? Maybe it's not the abstraction itself that's so hard to understand, but the relationship between the abstract and the concrete -- the July corn futures market versus the July cornfield. That's the part I don't get. But when you take that pesky physical-world thing out of the picture, suddenly the imagination can go free and wild. Why have a fantasy stock market for blogs? Why not?


[User Picture]From: sonetka
2005-09-12 06:48 pm (UTC)
I don't know anything about econ, but I'm guessing that while there would be more passenger rail, the price of riding on it would also go up enormously in the short-term, and though things might even out in the long run, when was the last time any public transportation authority LOWERED their ticket prices? :) Then you'd be hearing about how the poor were being screwed over because suddenly rail passes cost $300/month - and it would be true.

Hmmm...would your parents happen to understand the mystery that is "pork bellies"? I hear about them all the time in trading and have no idea how earth you trade a pork belly, or why. I assume that each belly represents a pig, but I'm probably really off about that!
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[User Picture]From: lindseykuper
2005-09-17 08:36 pm (UTC)
They sure do...but I don't.
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[User Picture]From: lindseykuper
2005-09-12 10:37 pm (UTC)
Preach it, brother.
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[User Picture]From: cerulicante
2005-09-13 04:14 am (UTC)
It would be far better to reduce high union wages to levels sustainable by the market so that prices on US-made goods become more competitive with foreign goods. That would really help the economy.

If gas was too expensive, it would make the cost of all goods and services increase to the point where it would be harder for poor people to cash their welfare checks because they can't afford bus fare...and there will be so much complaining!

Let the market decide! Capitalism, ho!
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[User Picture]From: lindseykuper
2005-09-17 08:37 pm (UTC)
Oh, man. I really wish you were being facetious.
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