Thursday, October 08, 2009
Debate rages over greed in America


DesireG, whose unique editing and outspoken nature has a way of sparking conversation on iReport.com, has done it again in a big way. In her most recent iReport, she made her opinion known that she felt that Americans were “afraid” to do what was needed to fix the economy due to greed.

For the first time, adriana71 felt compelled to respond to a fellow iReporter with her own video, saying that we have a global economy and that Americans are not the only ones responsible.

PunjabiPower felt inspired to quote Michael Douglas in “Wall Street,” when he said, “Greed is good.” He asked why greed is something that should be punished when it “created the economic engine” of both the U.S. and the rest of the world.

The debate continued, prompting responses from EWillies1961 and ky42, among others.

Take a look at DesireG and PunjabiPower’s videos above, and sound off here if you would like to weigh in as well.

118 Comments
October 8, 2009
Click to view Shamrock6's profile

Greed is never good.  What has happened to our country is shameful.  It makes no sense at all for so few people to have so much when there are others that have nearly nothing at all.  I wish that the death penalty applied to white collar criminals as well.  Madoff should definitely get the death penalty as should the myriad of CEO's that have bilked and cheated innocent people out of millions of dollars.  A similar arguent can be made for gun control. When is enough enough?  The right to bear arms doesn't mean you get to have bazookas and tanks in your front yard.  In America if you give someone an inch they take a mile.  As much as I love this country we definitely need to taken down a notch or two.

October 8, 2009
Click to view milty456's profile

Shamrock6..while i agree with you on most points...nobody  has bazookas and tanks..those are illegal..stop over exaggerating about the gun issue..it is a non issue....take it from me..a gun owning, loving LIBERAL Democrat...

October 8, 2009
Click to view freespiritin's profile

I grew up in the south and my mammaw use to say pigs get fat and hogs get slaughtered! Truth in it

October 8, 2009
Click to view Sternberg's profile

One man's greed and acquiring of personal possessions is the next guys income and opportunity to better himself.

The richest 10% of us pay half the taxes and provide the schools and roads and books and .......... for most of the rest of us.

You can whine because someone else is wealthy, or you can search for your own niche and your own opportunity to excel.

Or you can just keep whining.

October 8, 2009
Click to view Sternberg's profile

Who, pray tell has tanks and/or bazookas in their front yard?  Any CEO convicted of a crime should pay the penalty prescribed by law, and not that suggested by the rants of Shamrock6, or 5 or 4 or any other of the more intelligent clones of the original Shamrock.

October 8, 2009
Click to view birdyspice's profile

one only needs to look at america's ever expanding waist line to know we're a bunch of greedy jerks.

October 8, 2009
Click to view birdyspice's profile

@sternberg: shamrock was just making a point about guns; it wasn't meant to be taken literally. maybe if you had any intellect yourself you'd realize that.

October 8, 2009
Click to view herself's profile

Wow. to be so materialistically based to say that death penalty should be imposed begs that the speaker should look in the mirror. Greed and entitlement go hand in hand.

October 8, 2009
Click to view amigaman25's profile

If you go after the rich CEO's, lets go after all the over paid sports stars especially when they go on strike for more money. And while you are at it, most of our Congressmen are millionaires and they vote themselves an annual pay raise; take all from the President on down.

October 8, 2009
Click to view carefree79's profile

birdyspice

I think sternberg realizes that shamrock shouldn't be taken literally.  If shamrock's argument is so strong then why the need for such gross exaggeration?

 

Amen ,herself!

October 8, 2009
Click to view Bubdud's profile

I really thing greed has been around for a long long time. Remember way back when we first started the industrial revolution as taught in school. Remember the robber barons who worked people to death for pennies while they built million dollar mansions. We had an article about the women who were given a two week trial at the factories to see how good the worked...in that trial they didn't get PAID. When the two weeks were up most were fired. And then the bosses started with another crew that worked free. This is where the original Unions came in to help this country. The only problem is, I think a lot of the Unions got out of hand with their demands and a lot of business, like the auto industry couldn't really afford to pay upward of $70 dollars and hour.

 

I think the Unions mostly are really good for employees, IF THEY DON'T GET GREEDY..(THERE'S THAT WORD AGAIN)

October 8, 2009
Click to view johnmark's profile

amigaman25 - sports stars don't use their wealth to keep other classes of americans down from reaching the american dream like CEO's due to greed. One example is the former CEO of delphi. During bankruptacy this former CEO submitted a plan to the judge to reduce production workers pay from $27 an hour to $9 an hour while giving himself additional millions in bonus and pay increases for all the executives.

October 8, 2009
Click to view johnmark's profile

amigaman25 - sports stars don't use their wealth to keep other classes of americans down from reaching the american dream like CEO's due to greed. One example is the former CEO of delphi. During bankruptacy this former CEO submitted a plan to the judge to reduce production workers pay from $27 an hour to $9 an hour while giving himself additional millions in bonus and pay increases for all the executives.

October 8, 2009
Click to view SurferGeorge's profile

Greed is most definitely NOT good.

 

Greed / Avarice allows one to ignore the impact that one's personal wants and/or desires.

When, through devious means, one manages to profit from another, who must face a resulting loss, it is NOT good.

 

I hope to live in a society built on honor, integrity, morals and an at least passing concern for the results of our actions on others.

Throughout history, the "strong" (manipulative, forceful) have exploited others.  The sad thing is that exploitation is not essential for success.

 

GREED comes into play when the lazy, indifferent, immoral "strong" take advantage...  The French could tell us about their revolution, OR...  We could use our brains and our self respect to act in an honorable way and find the joy of success WITHOUT greed.

 

October 8, 2009
Click to view johnmark's profile

sorry about posting twice, didn't know they delay posting now.

October 8, 2009
Click to view JMan1111's profile

I don't understand all this talk about greed.  Criminals who steal (i.e. Madoff) should go to jail and have every penny taken from them.  Madoff will never be able to pay back all that he stole.  However honest, hard working Americans who earn good money should not be forced to compensate for those who chose not select a career that pays well (nor should they provide health insurance for those who don't have it).  America was not founded as a socialist state, nor should it become one.  For all of you who want to live off the handouts of others, once you take the reward for success away there will be no motivation and productivity will fall and there will be nothing for the moochers to steal.

October 8, 2009
Click to view kileyander's profile

Yeah, greed is horrible.  Wanting more and more and expecting others to provide it to you is a terrible problem in this country. That's why I say, get rid of welfare, foodstamps, medicaid, and all the other government progams that those greedy lazy people take advantage of and the democrats force the government to take the money of hardworking tax payers and give to lazy welfare cheats.

 

Wanting to keep what is rightfully yours, what you've earned through your own hard work, creativity and innovation is not greed. It is human nature.  Thinking that the work product of others should be taken from them and given to you when you haven't earned it, THAT IS GREED!

October 8, 2009
Click to view kileyander's profile

Johnmark, CEO's don't don anything to keep "other classes" down, as you say.  What they do is try to make their products for the cheapest possible price so they can sell it at a higher profit. That is called good business.  If those workers didn't want to work for what he was willing to pay, they could quit and go get another job.  But if all their labor was worth on the open market was $9, that's all they should be paid.  If the CEO can get the same work done for $9 that he was previously paying $27 for he should get a big fat bonus because he has increased the profits for his shareholders.  You see, companies don't exist to creat jobs.  They create to increase the wealth of the owners of the companie. The shareholders.  Take your head out of your butt read an economics book.

October 8, 2009
Click to view kiwi2704's profile

Nothing is 100% or 100% - it is the method in which it is used that it good or bad. That applies to gun, religion, and even greed.

 

Wanting something for nothing in my opinion is a bad use of greed. But I am a small business owner. I want more than my former employers can give me. I want control over my job and my life. I want to determine how much money I can make.  So I am trying to start my own business.

 

If I didn't want more, I would just take my paycheck and go home every day. But because I am "greedy", I am trying to achieve more in my own life.

October 8, 2009
Click to view JMZ636's profile

The problem in America is that most people want to believe that the only greed is "greedy corporations". They constantly cite Wallmart and other companies as the basis for their argument. The problem in my view is that we have moved away from self reliance not just greed. The 'greedy companies' provide a service that us citizens want. we contantly want the best right now with no effort. we have no problem with them until things go bad and then we all of a sudden become poor opressed people.as an example The greedy banks and lenders were great companies giving loans to poor people, until the housing market collapsed. Then they be came predatory lenders targeting minorities and whatnot. im not saying they are innocent, but the conclusion is that once YOU sign that contract, the responsibility is YOURS. No greedy company can make it if you do not shop there. and i know there are very few cases where the consumer bears the brunt of the blame. The sad part is these same people now want the federal govt to come in and regulate their bad behavior. Instead of the laws being made to protect from fraud, we now want the govt to come in and protect us from ourselves. too bad they cannot control themselves, because now we will all suffer

October 8, 2009
Click to view asdehaan's profile

I just want to comment on the tanks - My old neighbor in Michigan had a tank. It was an old medic tank of some kind. The gun turret was disarmed. People do have tanks though.

October 8, 2009
Click to view SurferGeorge's profile

Kileyander:

I'm good with ending welfare and the like if you are good with ending corporate welfare - grants to "Big Pharma," tax subsidies and breaks for Big Pharma, Big Oil, Big Agriculture (not the small family farmers), AMD and the like...  Stop giving money to GREEDY corporate entities who spend time, money and energy figuring out how to get more for themselves, while providing less for the people who do the work to help them get it.

 

Also, with GREEDY corporate heads shipping jobs off shore for DECADES and hiring illegal aliens while citizens go begging, I find it difficult to call people who (would LOVE to have a good job and earn an honest wage, but) need Government help, just to feed their families...  If ignorance is bliss, you must be in a perpetual state of joy if it is REALLY your contention that everyone on welfare or Medicaid is lazy and or greedy.  I recognize that there is SOME abuse, and there are SOME who abuse the system, but are you saying that they are ALL of that ilk?

In the same way, I don't believe that EVERY business/businessman is criminal, greedy, heartless, unethical, but the ones who are, do it in a BIG way.

Medicaid???  Walmart employs more Medicaid insurance recipients than the next half dozen employers of low income workers...  They make PLENTY of money, why let TAX PAYERS bear the burden of health care for their employees?

 

Your second post is so catastrophically ignorant and irrelevant that it defies any kind of brief response, beyond saying:

You are ill-informed and naive at best and a greedy self absorbed cynic without ANY sense of morals, fair play and/or humanity (and even that is not) at worst.

October 8, 2009
Click to view JMZ636's profile

Shamroc6- America is not supposed to 'give' you all you want. The point is to go out and earn it. Capitalism is not the problem, neither are guns. you could give me a "bazooka and a tank' andi would be 1000 times less of a threat than a gangbanger with a knife. In fact i know a couple of people WITH REAL TANKS. Never hurt a fly.   The problem lies with new American values and beliefs, not the system America was founded on.  It used to be that you were born, lived, and died in a certain position. There was NO way around that and attempts to improve or move to a different caste or even marry above your position was frowned upon and even illegal. In america you can move up and down as you like, and there are opportunities to do so. But we cannot 'hand you' success. you have to work hard and smart. we have more information available to us than anyplace else in the world in the span of human history. ALL of that information is available to us at the touch of a button. Virtually everyone goes to school. i say virtually because everyone is required but people drop out. and yet we have the lowest scores of even some third world countries. you cannot tell me that its America thats the problem. The problem lies because people no longer want to work hard and learn.Neccesity is the mother of invention and now they want information and success and everything that goes with it to be just given to them or they have no interest.

October 8, 2009
Click to view SurferGeorge's profile

It would be ignorant, to the point of moronic to think that only corporations are greedy...  Having said that, I feel comfortable saying that the impact of "Big Business" greed far exceeds by dollar value and socio-economic-political impact the greed of "everyman."  We all want more, that's not greed.

Wanting more with a disregard for what others will have to contribute (whether they can afford it or not, whether they want to or not) is what GREED is.  Most PEOPLE are not greedy, we recognize that taking money out of someone else's pocket, food out of someone else's mouth is not MORAL.  Greed has no moral component.

 

Self Reliance is alive and well in MOST Americans, most of us would LOVE to have a job that we could go to and be respected.  Most of us would LOVE to have a job that would do little more than meet our basic needs, but that would do at least a little more.

Most of us are no lazy, most of us are not greedy.

BUSINESS (ONLY) works with CONSUMERS.  You need someone to buy your products, so you advertise to create demands, you prey on the worries, interests and failings of others...  One of my "favorites" is "keeping up with the Jone's"...  THAT is a CLASSIC ADVERTISING ploy to make a potential consumer feel inferior, like they need to compete to be "equal."

 

Corporations WANT US to suffer, that is what creates demand for their stuff.

 

October 8, 2009
Click to view SurferGeorge's profile

JMZ636:

If your theory/posit that Americans don't want to work was actually real, we would not have ANY innovation, creativity or improvement from Americans.

 

Predatory banks were predatory before the collapse, they just got FOUND OUT with the collapse.  Individual responsibility is lessened, CONSIDERABLY, when criminals set out to deceive them.  To suggest that all people can always understand all of the elements of all contracts is STUPID...  Many attorneys don't understand all of any given contract.

Your over simplistic explanations have no foundation in fact.

October 8, 2009
Click to view tlocker's profile

To kileyander:

 

Not everyone who receives government benefits are lazy. I grew up from a poor single mother. After graduating high school I joined the Navy, where I had a very successful job for 5 years. I have 2 children that I love very much. I am now pursuing my dream of being a meteorologist (which I did in the Navy, but have to have a degree to do it in the civilian side) so that I can supply my children with all that I did not have. I go to college full time on campus (honor student in one of the hardest majors at the university), work full time, and am a father of my two children (a very good father), I am receiving medicaid for myself and my two children. If it was not for medicaid my kids and I would not be in good health. I am taking this "benefit" from the government while paying taxes out of my paychecks, paying interest on student loans to the government and in exchange I will be a professional meteorologist working for the National Weather Service, serving everyone in my community, and paying more taxes because I am getting paid more. That is how it is supposed to work, help for a little bit, that is what I am doing. So I do not believe that everyone is lazy that accepts government benefits, I know that I am far from lazy!

October 8, 2009
Click to view kileyander's profile

SurferGeorge:

 

Yes, EVERYONE on welfare is lazy and stupid, otherwise, they would not be on welfare.  I've never met a smart, hardworking welfare recipient. 

 

As for my second post, I defy you to point out one flaw in my logic.  JUST ONE!

 

Companies exist to return profits to their owners.  They don't exist to create jobs.  If I am the CEO of a company and can get the same job done for 1/3 the cost, I will increase my profit and justify my big bonus from the shareholders.  If the workers don't like that, they can go get another job.  If I can't find anyone to work for what I'm paying, I'll raise my wage. It's called the free market and before unions and the government screwed it up with the minimum wage, that's the way it was done.

 

I could fix all the countries problems overnight. I'd outlaw unions, eliminate the minimum wage, eliminate the capital gains tax and institute a flat income tax. 

 

It isn't fair that the top 50% of income earners should have to pay 97% of all the income taxes.  I agree with president Obama that EVERYONE should have some skin in the game.

 

Oh, and I do agree with you, I'd eliminate all susidies, corporate, agricultural and otherwise.  No more mohair subsidies, no more ethanol subsidies, no more tax payer money for any form of private use. 

 

The budget would not only be balanced but we'd have a surplus to pay off the outrageous debt that the democrats have made infinitely worse in only 9 months.

 

Problem solved, and no greed involved.

October 8, 2009
Click to view Lazurwolf's profile

Interesting that some use the word greed as being synonymous with "the desire for more material possessions" whereas they completely gloss over their own insatiable appetite for power over others.  Because when you can tell someone how much is too much you then can control them.

I think greed is only bad when it drives people to bad behavior.  Greed that drives people towards responsible behavior is good.  However, I might not call that greed.  However, those who seek to re-distribute other folks wealth don't really try to differentiate between the two.  For them if you are "rich", you must be greedy (unless you happen to socially and politically agree with them, in which case you get a free pass).

 

October 8, 2009
Click to view kileyander's profile

SurferGeorge, there is no such thing as a "predatory bank".  Nobody went out into the street and held a gun to anyone's head and forced them to sign a mortgage.  We are all grownups and if you sign mortgage papers, you should read the mortgage papers.  It isn't the banks fault that the education system has rendered the vast majority of the public financially illiterate.  That is the fault of the liberal teacher's unions which should be imprissoned for what they have done to our once great educational system.

October 8, 2009
Click to view leafy's profile

what debate?  .... we all know that irresponsible blood-sucking pigs in the American financial industry were responsible for the recession ... de-regulation under the "greed is good" Reagan administration started it all ... we are now paying the price for all the greedy blood-sucking pigs and their free-market parasitic underlings who contributed to the rampant money-grabbers who were stupid enough to believe that the "invisible hand" of the market would regulate itself as if the proverbial fox would watch the hen house ... get real people ... screw you greedy blood-sucking irresponisible capitalists and damn you to hell ...

October 8, 2009
Click to view pinhead001's profile

Welcome to the global Market!

You just been out sourced

There will "NOT" be jobs in the future that are labor based where someone makes 20 or more dollar those days long gone, get some skills. The thing I am p.issed about is that the people that have skills will support people who don't. Its greed alright on the person who expects to get pay fifty dollars for screwing on lug nuts or throwing bags on a plane. All the profitable companies pay what is in-line with the skill set being offered such as Toyota 15.00 is the top pay oh and they have no UAW. 

October 8, 2009
Click to view JMZ636's profile

surfer george. if i rob a house and you then rob me and steal what i just stole...my reponsibility is not lessened. you dont always have to understand every element of a contract. This is what lawyers are for and if you and THEY dont understand DO NOT SIGN. how hard is that. This rule of mine has been proven time and again and it works more often than not.  it is not hard to understand that if you make 3000 a month you cannot afford a 5000 a month house payment. Idont care what they say. I know to damn many professionals in the field, and i have done sales. Apparently my 'over simplifications' DO have basis in fact and work quite well as i am not loosing my home my car and have savings... next. Self relience is not alive and well as you pointed out. and i can give many examples of that. " your theory/posit that Americans don't want to work was actually real, we would not have ANY innovation, creativity or improvement from Americans." HELLO! most of our products come from over seas not america,we import more than we export. INCLUDING WORKERS. people hire illegals to mow their lawns and paint their houses. infact the bigest argument FOR illegals is doing the jobs 'americans will not do'(bullsht but thats the argument) again we have more information than anyone, yet alot of our kids couldnt count to 20 unless they took their shoes off. videogames have replaced actual exercise.  so where is the self relience and the American innovations you speak of". Im not saying corporations dont do some crappy things. i think outsourcing to other countries is wrong. and i know of other things as well. What im trying to get through to you george is that we need to take a certain responsibility and say no. again when you say 'yes' then the responsibility becomes yours. I dont care what the advertisements say. Im smart enough to know when to say yes and no.Your talking to a guy who grew up poor and busted his ass and made good George. you may keep thinking that im 'oversimplifying' this. and that 'evil greedy corporations' are after you. it means nothing to me. but the proof is in the pudding that i KNOW what i am talking about and my way works.

October 8, 2009
Click to view SurferGeorge's profile

Kileyander;

Based on your "All people on welfare" post, I find it highly unlikely that you will consider or understand this, but here is a the first place where you are wrong:

"Johnmark, CEO's don't don anything to keep "other classes" down, as you say."

Management has ALWAYS done things to keep workers under their thumbs. Unions were created in an attempt to give workers protection from unethical practices... OSHA (The United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration) was created to help workers have safer working conditions because employers were DEMANDING that workers be in unhealthy, unsafe environments.

There are two different points that refute your moronic assertion...
And THIS part:
"What they do is try to make their products for the cheapest possible price so they can sell it at a higher profit. That is called good business. If those workers didn't want to work for what he was willing to pay, they could quit and go get another job."

 

In an environment where MILLIONS of people have lost their jobs, IN THE LAST YEAR, and MILLIONS more people want jobs than are available, workers can be FORCED to do jobs for less (rather than NO) pay, for fear of being replaced.  SO, the choice is quit and go on welfare and medicaid or try to keep our dignity and work for sub-standard wages in unsafe, unhealthy jobs.

 

The idea that "something is better than nothing," and that many workers REALLY have choices is RETARDED.

October 8, 2009
Click to view Lazurwolf's profile

Leafy,

Do you prefer the system where everyone (expcept for the over lords) is equally poor.  No worries in that system about losing your home or retirement because you wont have any.  Big brother owns and controls everything and determines who gets what.  The risk and reward system that is capitalism is not perfect but please refer to any system that has brought more wealth to more people ever?  The bottom 25% ecconomically in the US are still some of the richest people in the world.  It is somewhat jaded to think that people wont act in their own perceived best interest and that those actions will sometimes cross the line of what we consider moral or even legal behaviour; but so what.  Not everyone who made money or works "the system" is a "devil".  Lumping them all together and (which is worse) destorying the system they work in which is the basis for the "American" dream is just plain silly.

October 8, 2009
Click to view grngurilla's profile

Just like to say have you ever met a wealthy individual? How did they make their money? It is the job of corporations to create profit in order to do so products must be produced cheaply(labor and materials)the person who owns the company makes the profit not the ones making it or providing the raw materials. The poor stay poor and the wealthy make more money. Profit seeking companies do not want to share the wealth that belongs to us all. While wealthy people eat caviar the poor who break their backs in their dangerous factories die and starve. This is the world of unchecked profiteering and corporate greed, our world.

  Like to say one thing to shamrock6 every one should be allowed to posses the same weapons tech as the government this is what the second amendment is about the peoples right to protect themself against the government if and when it becomes tyrannical and oppressive like ours has since 9/11 our freedom was bought with the blood of patriots why would we give it away to the government that couldnt protect us in the first place?Fear will destroy our nation long before guns will. familiarize your self with history and facts about how gun control does not provide protection for the people only for the government. When gun laws are lax crime goes down when gun laws are strict crime goes up that is a fact no liberal can change that with any political rhetoric, ever. Take charge of your freedom many men and women in my family have died over the last few centuries for your freedom dont make their deaths worthless. 

October 8, 2009
Click to view grngurilla's profile

The American Dream is a lie. There is no such thing hasnt been for 30 years. now the american dream is to be able to survive until retirement when you can collect your social security and tell your boss you only need 40 hours a week to live instead of the 80 you were working before.

October 8, 2009
Click to view SurferGeorge's profile

JMZ636:

You wrote:  "surfer george. if i rob a house and you then rob me and steal what i just stole...my reponsibility is not lessened. you dont always have to understand every element of a contract."

 

I couldn't even read the rest, this aspect is SO far off base, the rest must be equally stupid...

 

Let me explain;

If, as the lender, you make a contract that I (or my lawyer) cannot understand, and in the agreement, you know (which you should) that I cannot make the payments, but you draw up the contract anyway, and I make the mistake of believing that you would not cause me harm or want the loan to go bad, so I sign it, I have not "broken back into your house" when I fail to make the payments...

 

YOU as the banker, sold the loan (that you knew would go bad) for a profit to another unsuspecting entity for a FAT profit.  You made money, you KNEW, or should have known, if you had done your job that the loan would go bad, but you sold it anyway...  How does that make ME the bad guy???  How does that make you (the banker) the one who is harmed?  Didn't you make a profit when you get fees when the contract was signed, AND make a profit when you sold the loan?

October 8, 2009
Click to view JMZ636's profile

Kileyander- well put. but i wouldnt waste your breath. people like george may mean well but they let life and people wash over them. They will keep a sandcastle right by the surf just so they can blame the tide for washing it away. They dont want to admit that while yes some companies can do shady things, it is THEIR greed that inevetably screws them not the companies. if you do not understand the contract COMPETLY...DO NOT SIGN! If the lawyer you have does not understand the contract, DO NOT SIGN! Americans want everything given to them including success. They want to be the noble opressed people to make them feel better about their short commings and to give their life meaning. If they actually had any clue about REAL poverty, and REAL opression they would crap themselves. This is what America is becomming, self rightous self absorbed terminal victims all trying to play robin hood.

October 8, 2009
Click to view cajr's profile

first of all, people dont have to work for pennies. its their choice. second, employers are not obligated to pay people high wages just because people say so. you dont have to work for them. and finally i know plenty of liberals who were out buying two, three houses to invest in or "flip" as they call it. is this not greed? now they are the first people screaming for government controls! not everyone can be at the top,just as the economy cant work with everyone at the bottom. i am sick of people begging for handouts from someone else who did the hardwork to get what they have. i have too much pride for a handout and i would never teach my kids to just kick back and get a tip from the government, which so many people in this country do.

 

people are always on here talking about how we need to slice the pie evenly for all. ok, when you get your next check, take a third of it and go and hand it to someone. you cant do it because you have to take care of your own!

quit asking us to pay for your health insurance because you made wrong choices in life or made bad career decisions or slacked in school or took the easy road or are just plain lazy!

October 8, 2009
Click to view SurferGeorge's profile

JMZ636:

I guess you don't get me, I am not oppressed, in any way.  To the contrary, I'm pretty successful.  I own my own business and just got back from a couple of weeks in Hawaii.

I agree with you, that if you don't understand the contract, don't sign it, but if your lawyer has ego issues (imagine that) and can't see the danger in the contract and tells you it's OK, what are you supposed to do?

IF, as you suggest, that Americans want everything for free, we'd all be sitting at home, no one would be working or looking for a job, or ANOTHER job to try and make ends meet.  We do want/need work to feel valuable, and we WANT TO FEEL VALUABLE.

Having come from American poverty, and seen it, up close in third world countries, I do know what it looks and FEELS like, and you're RIGHT, it does make me metaphorically "crap my pants."  But I don't think that's really very relevant.

As to the "Robin Hood" thing, I don't want to take anything from anyone who has EARNED it HONORABLY, without deception, fraud or theft.  If it's "self righteous" to expect people to treat others as they expect to be treated, then I guess I am.

October 8, 2009
Click to view Wayneski's profile

@kileyander

 

Hey, I understand where you're coming from, but please understand it's a pretty extremist view ya got there. As extreme as the life long welfare abusers view of entitlement.

 

As surfergeorge pointed, if corporations are so great-

then why the numerous government agencies to police them?  FDA, DOT, EPA, DOJ, etc,etc, 

 

The vast majority of lawsuits are corporations suing other corporations. Even they can't get along themselves

without courts and lawyers.

 

Coroporations & businesses are simply tools, a means to

an end. In college, there's the maximum profit brainwash

going on. Don't buy into it. Look at China's problems while following maximum profit psychosis.

 

Heard any problems about China's product problems? Infant milk poisoning anyone?

 

"Companies exist to return profits to their owners.  They don't exist to create jobs."

 

Don't buy into that too much. Because there's often a win-win situation being overlooked by myopic CEO's

 

"It isn't fair that the top 50% of income earners should have to pay 97% of all the income taxes."

 

Wow pretty harsh aren't we? Let put it to you this way-

 

100% of the income of the top 50% of income earners come from the bottom 50%. So in essence they pay no taxes,

we pay it for them buy purchasing goods & services.

 

It's a very delicate ecosystem, but once disregard for society comes to play, the following upset in balance

causes a reaction from the government (of the people)

 

My family was on welfare when we 1st arrived here in the states. Not speaking english prevents a lot of employment. Fast forward a few decades, we are an engineer,accountant & medical worker.

 

So yes, people do get off the 'dole

 

 

October 8, 2009
Click to view H2O1978's profile

Okay, let's say we did get rid of the minimum wage, as kileyander suggests, where would we be?

 

What would cities be like?  Would people still be able to afford rent on $2 a day?  Food?  What would those people do when faced with starvation?  Would crime go up or down if we got rid of the minimum wage?  What would that cost?  And when we walked down the street in our gated communities or drove to work in our armored cars, would we still be in America?  There ARE places in the world like that, it's just that America has never been that way. 

 

America became what it is from precisely the opposite direction!  America was created in an atmosphere of equality, not inequality. 

 

One of the most illuminating questions I ever heard a professor ask a class was this one:  How do we get Democracy?  How did we?  His conclusion was that Democracy came about because of farmers with guns...farmers with guns are all landowners.  They all have land, they all have guns, and everyone is pretty much equal...or more equal than was ever seen in Europe or anywhere else.  Equality created American Democracy...equality was necessary...and American Democracy now perpetuates that equality...you cannot have one without the other.

 

Equality of opportunity is the American way

 

 

 

October 8, 2009
Click to view pevans1's profile

Dear Sternburg, I'm not hardly a Liberal! As a matter of fact I'm tired of the Liberals trying to take all my rights away! Like Free Speech, right to assemble, right to bear arms, right to ride my snowmobile on 20 feet of snow in the National Forest and so on! But I have one thing to say to you... The richest 10% of the people in this country have over 90% of all the money!!! So, should they be paying 50% of all the taxes? I say no! They should be paying 90% of the taxes! Cause that's their fair share!!! Don't like it...move to Isreal!!!

October 8, 2009
Click to view lindewy's profile

First of all, Lazurwolf, beautiful correlation between "greed" and "power over others", and so perfectly true.

SurferGeorge: Might I suggest that you stop calling people "ignorant" and their opinions "irrelevant" until you have actually either taken an economics 101 course or read (and comprehended) any one or all of the following:

John Locke

Adam Smith

Milton Friedman (Nobel Prize Economics)

Frederic Bastiat

Henry Hazlitt

Frederich Hayek (Nobel Laureate)

Economics is NOT a theoretical science.

 

October 8, 2009
Click to view JMZ636's profile

"I couldn't even read the rest, this aspect is SO far off base, the rest must be equally stupid..." LMAO George you didnt insult me as you wanted to. This is funny as hell because it shows me exactly why you get screwed on contracts. you just go off and sign away ithout reading the WHOLE thing and cry when its time to pay the piper. CONGRATS GEORGE YOU JUST PROVED MY ENTIRE ARGUMENT CORRECT!!! THANKS lol

 

 

Now Let me explain HOW LIFE WORKS !! you are only guilty of drawing up a bum contract that you Know its a bum contract...no more evil then if i wrote IOY 1 gajillion zillion bojillion bux on a napkin. BUISNIESS 101-the FINAL point of ANY contract is you signing it and agreeing to it. why cant you understand this simple FACT. YOU have the power the ENTIRE PROCCESS BECAUSE YOU CAN WALK AWAY AT ANY TIME! So with my "stupid theory" that works  it does not matter what unethical contract the bank, the broker, or who else draws up, because the only person who can sign the thing and make it 'official' is ME. And remember 'Immoral' and Illegal are NOT the same. Therefore If i do notunderstand or feel comfortable with ANY part of the contract, I DO NOT SIGN THE CONTRACT AND THEREFORE WHATS IN IT IS MOOT. they can put in the contract that i have to give them my first born and dance the hula in a thong and indian headress in front of the pope if they want, unless I AGREE and SIGN it don't matter. jeez george again this is business 101.  I have my own business George and do this every day quit f'ing arguing with me on this. Im right you are WRONG!

October 8, 2009
Click to view SurferGeorge's profile

Kileyander wrote:

"I could fix all the countries problems overnight. I'd outlaw unions, eliminate the minimum wage, eliminate the capital gains tax and institute a flat income tax.

I'd go for the flat tax, but only if ALL income (including profit and inheritance) were taxed. If there is to be a "flat" tax, it must be all inclusive.
You can outlaw unions and the minimum wage if you can guarantee that companies would pay living wages and provide safe healthy work environments without oversight.
(not much chance of THAT, based on ALL KNOWN HISTORY)




It isn't fair that the top 50% of income earners should have to pay 97% of all the income taxes. I agree with president Obama that EVERYONE should have some skin in the game.

OK, but again, based on an absolutely equal standard (percentages of income?) How much should a guy making $6.00 an hour pay for milk and bread, and a millionaire?




Oh, and I do agree with you, I'd eliminate all susidies, corporate, agricultural and otherwise. No more mohair subsidies, no more ethanol subsidies, no more tax payer money for any form of private use.

SEE??? We can agree on things!




The budget would not only be balanced but we'd have a surplus to pay off the outrageous debt that the democrats have made infinitely worse in only 9 months."

Since I needed to add the humane/humanitarian aspects to provide a genuine balance, I think you can see that not everyone sees the solutions as exactly the same.

October 8, 2009
Click to view H2O1978's profile

Why would anyone think that people have a choice about "working for pennies"?  Did all the people who couldn't find work during the Great Depression have a choice? 

 

It's not even coherent to say that people have a choice.  It they had a better choice, I promise you, they would take it.  Nobody chooses a low paying job if they have a better choice.

 

The real question is, why don't they have a choice?  Why are so many capable people sitting around doing so little?  What is preventing capable people from doing meaningful work?  These are the questions we need to start asking and answering.  And giving reasons like "people are stupid and lazy" isn't a real answer because most people are not. 

October 8, 2009
Click to view theman123's profile

I believe that the u.s.a. has become far to involved or concerned with materialistic things. Just a few examples of things that i believe illustrate this are. 1. the fact that medicenes can be directly marketed to the public through commercials the u.s.a. is the only country that allows this i wonder why. 2. we are the only industrialized country that allows such massive amounts of money in our political process. and finally how can technology keep getting better and better for less and less money to the consummer and yet medicine is going in the exact oppositew direction. Hmmmmm maybe because a desktop isnt a nessistiy or life or death and ones health care is.

October 8, 2009
Click to view JMZ636's profile

George what your definition of Honorably? that lies the problem. Because we(not just u n me) will never agree on what is honorable. And actually what i said about the third world countries is relevant. It puts in perspective exactly what we have. and how the poorest of us and how the at least to me we take way too much stuff for granted. But i do stand behind what i said. Most of the problems are cause by our choices and actions not some mass conspiracy, people want to believe. My rules may seem stupid to you. you know what...fine. free country and I apologize to you for going off. However they work and have served me very well. i grew up poor and became successful and I hope to take it farther. the rules i have were HARD learned and battle tested(so to speak) you will probally react to the post b4 this one..thats fine no problem. I too agree in treating people as they treat me. But i do also understand that people will ALWAYS do what is in their best interest, and there is no way we can legislate against that. Therefore i make it a point to always protect myself(and yes my clients and people i care for etc).Hope for the best, Plan for the worst...

October 8, 2009
Click to view SurferGeorge's profile

Definition of terms is one of my favorite points of honor.  Once you have a common vocabulary with a uniform understanding or a word and it's meaning, everyone is equal.

Honorable: To do a thing honestly.  To make no attempt to deceive or manipulate the truth in order to gain an unfair advantage.  To act in good faith, with the expectation that all parties involved will do the same with no intent ot or awareness of any harm that may come to a third party as a result of our statements or actions.

Choice: A decision made based on the facts at hand...

Any choice that is made from a dishonorable set of options is not a real, honest, fair ethical choice, and to expect a person who has been deceived to be responsible for that choice is unreasonable.

Their "best interest":  In the context of your post, seems to suppose that a person who has the opportunity to take an unfair advantage will do so, that everyone will do so, and that they will ALWAYS do so.  I find this unacceptable...  As a person who is often faced with those "opportunities," I can tell you that my sense of honor leads me, and that I almost never fail to do the honorable thing (I am human).

Hope for the best, plan for the worst and allow yourself to be pleasantly surprised...  In spite of dark overtones on this thread, I think people are basically good, and basically want to do the right thing, even when it is inconvenient.

October 8, 2009
Click to view lindewy's profile

JMZ636:

Don't apologize for your hard work and success. If you want somebody to approve of what you do (and in this day and age it's a shame you have to justify those good old Puritan work ethics), go back and read my last blog. Read any or all of those people and they will tell you it's just fine to do what you are doing! And know that there are a lot of us out there that applaud you!

October 8, 2009
Click to view JohnAB's profile

I see a variety of definitions of "greed" floating here. Greed is the unusually strong desire to accumulate wealth or possessions, sometimes by deceiving others. Greed is also the very strong desire to accumulate wealth disproportionate to the effort expended. (Getting something for nothing.) America was built on the premise of equality among people. However, it means equal opportunity, not equal pay. Some people have jobs that simply pay more. A CEO will always make more than a drywall hanger. A hard-working plumber will always make more than a lazy person who complains and doesn't want to work.

 

Personally, I think that protectionist trading policies are necessary and beneficial. America has a general cost of living that is not the same as other countries. If we can get our cars assembled by Americans for $50/hr then that is what it costs to make the car. Hypothetically, we could have our cars assembled in Bosnia by 12 year old kids for $50/month, but how does that benefit the American standard of living? It makes our standard go down and Bosnia's go up. The long term result, via economic equilibrium, is still that the American standard of living goes down. This becomes more and more true as this practice becomes widespread in this "global economy".

 

This is a simple example, I know, but a company that willfully contributes to a lower standard of living in America is practicing greed.

October 8, 2009
Click to view dwpsa's profile

An analogy I can think of is if you were a wild animal would you rather live in the wild or live in a zoo.  In the zoo you are fed and cared for, but in the wild if you don't adapt you will die.  Living in the wild is so much more fun.  Nobody owes you a living.

Of course I get sick about the salaries that CEO's make, but we let them.  Isn't it the board of directors that determines the CEO salary?  Aren't they mostly CEO's of other companies?  Kind of a conflict there.  They are such a small percentage of the population, but they get the media attention and all we do is watch tv.

October 8, 2009
Click to view jujunooky's profile

How much is too much? Enough for a hundred lifetimes? People who work hard should be compensated for their hardwork. I am sure none of us would argue against that. The truth is that greed by the wealthy and powerful few only broadens the gap between the haves and have nots. We all can not be CEOs. We can start a company. Some of us have to be customers and we all can't over charge each other. Some have extremely marketable abilities and some don't have any. Teachers get paid by taxpayers and make very little in most part of the country and for the most part are poor. Someone has to bag te groceries. Someone has to sweep the streets. Someone has to clean the luxury hotel rooms and the motel 6s and 8s of this world. Let not forget that greed is not a virtue. Greed is a vice that only accentuates that negatives in all of us. It is truly insane that there folks among us that are comfortable enough to defend such a greed in a public forum. It speaks to the nature of a very interesting proportion human beings on the earth. No matter how you slice or dice, greed is wrong. Too much of anything is good for nothing. Life lesson 101.

October 8, 2009
Click to view Todd1965's profile

I think the one thing we have all missed in this country is the idea of responsibility.  Greed has always been there and will always be there, just look at the behavior of chimpanzees in the wild.  The idea is no one wants to take responsibility for the results of greed.  I believe in the free market.  Two me that means that if I make a bad decisions there is no one there to bail me out.  You cannot scream for free markets and then expect the goverment to bail you out or there is no checks to keep you from making the same mistakes all over again.  Just compare the great recession to the great depression and look at similarities.  As I told my son when he purposely broke his toy car that he could not have another one because he did not take care of the first one.  We keep giving them new toys to play with.

October 9, 2009
Click to view Punsalot's profile

Wow lots of people still living in the 1800s.  Minimum wages would not have people working for 2 dollars a day.  Before this latest economic downturn entry level wages were above the minimum wage.  What minimum wages do, is make it harder for the inexperienced and uneducated to get employment because they are not as productive enough to hire at the minimum wage.  This effects the young, and poor who would benefit (gain experience) from working, but may not need large amounts of money because they are still living with their parents.

As far as the unsafe working conditions, no company will last long that does not look out for the well being of its employees.  Injuries are expensive in terms of productivity and moral, not to mention workmans compensation claims.  Unfortunately the heavy handed federal government not content with the natural market effects adds on punitive fines to compainies that have OSHA recordable injuries.  This has the unintended consequence of driving the reporting of injuries underground.  Rather than helping the injured to get better, it puts them in between a rock and a hard place.  I've seen it happen too many times to think that it wasn't a systematic shortcoming of the regulatory culture. 

The biggest deterrent to abuses and other "bad things" that many of you attribute to greed, is information.  When it was found that toys from China had lead paint, people quit buying them and the companies that produced them suffered financially.  When people learn that their emloyer is unethical or otherwise underhanded in their employment, the employees don't feel any loyalty to the company, and usually become less productive.  They also usually find a different job as soon as they can.  Having to continually retrain new employees costs the employer not only in reduced productivity, but also in potential business, as consumers of their product go elsewhere because of the companies inability to maintain quaLITY.

I'm not saying that there isn't a regulatory role for our governemt to play, but generally, natural consequences are best at punishing those who choose unwisely.  Artificial consequences only produce other unintended results.

October 9, 2009
Click to view Echo234's profile

We are all trying to survive in world of capitalism, corporations and financial institions that work against us in every way they can.  The reason is greed and the "all mighty dollar".  For instance, part of our healthcare premiums, about $1,100 of it annually goes just to pay for the unisured.  The hospitals over bill the insured patients to cover the losses due to the unisured's who can't pay.  By now, anyone who has been paying attention to the healthcare debate knows that.  But, have you ever thought about how much of your premium goes to pay the elected officials who vote against you?  Think about it.  The insurance companies pay lobbyists to go to Washington to grease the palms of the politians who vote in their favor every single time.  Where do the insurance companies get the money to grease the politians palms?  They add it to our premiums.  That means that we're all actually paying the insurance companies to lobby against us in Washington!  That is how our greedy system works. 

 

And, I just learned that employers are allowed by law to take out an insurance policy on any of their employees without their knowledge.  Interesting.  It's like betting against you.  If they are able to make an easy buck off of your potential death, why not?  Also, they can borrow the money for these life insurance policies interest free.  The fact is, were all just a bunch of dollar signs to all of the corporations out there.  And obviously, whenever there is money to be made, Wall Street is right there doing what they do.  In my opinion, Wall Street is the root of all financial evil.  It's where greed is born.

 

I don't have a problem with capitalism or getting rich by working hard and being honest.  But, I do have a problem with an insurance CEO making $57,000 an hour because his company has denied 35 percent of it's customers healthcare claims. If the only way an insurance CEO can get filthy, stinking rich is to deny claims, then I say they shouldn't have the right to be rich.  Why should someone lose their life or their home to medical debt so the insurance CEO's can continue to live in mansions?  This kind of system only works for the those making a profit.  The rest of us can only hope that #1 - we don't get sick and #2 - if we do get sick, we have to pray that we don't get denied our rightful coverage. That's our system!  It involves high premiums and a lot of hope that we don't get screwed by our insurance company.

 

I don't even want to get started on the banks.  It makes me laugh when people blame the home buyers who took mortgages for more than they could afford.  Do you know how many bad lenders where out there pushing bad loans?  Well, I have an idea.  I purchased a property in 2003 and I worked in the housing industry.  My real estate agent was trying to push me into an interest only loan for a higher amount.  Why, because the higher the purchase price, they more commission they make.  I was approved for up to $90K by a reputable bank and these RE agents were showing me properties in the $120K range and telling me that with an interest only loan the payments are much lower so I could afford a bigger, more expensive  property.  It was quite tempting, but having worked in the housing industry, I had some knowledge of loans and I refused every such offer.  After months of waiting, I finally had to find my own property in my price range and then got my agent to let me inside to look at the property and draw up a contract.  If I had left it up to her, I would never have gotten a property that I could actually afford.  I really feel sorry for all of the buyers out there who didn't know any better and trusted their agents and their lenders.  I do believe the term "predatory lending".  I've seen it first hand.  It does exist and what I've just described is just the tip of the iceberg.  Apparently, banks were bundling and selling questionable loans to other companies.  Even my 30 year, fixed rate loan was sold immediately after I closed.  Many of the high risk loans were able to be sold after being falsely rated as "A" or "B" by companies who admitted to the fraud after the financial meltdown took place.  It's just another link in the chain that led to the meltdown because the regulators were not doing their jobs at all.  They just looked the other way while all of this was taking place.  They probably got the palms greased too.

 

Making money honestly by starting a business is a good thing.  It's what made America what it is today.  But, Wall Street Execs shouldn't be allowed to cheat people, cause a financial and economic meltdown, get bailed out with taxpayers hard earned cash and then get a million dollar bonus to boot.  It's criminal, it's greed at it's absolute worst and it shouldn't be allowed to happen in this country.  From the politians on up, everyone is so greedy, it seems like a virtually impossible task to clean up the culture of greed and corruption that exists in this country. 

October 9, 2009
Click to view Punsalot's profile

"Hypothetically, we could have our cars assembled in Bosnia by 12 year old kids for $50/month, but how does that benefit the American standard of living?"

 

It benefits the American standard of living if those that were previously producing cars can produce something else more efficiently, then everyone in America can purchase cars from Bosnia that cost a fraction of what they would cost if they were produced here.  Of course the key is Americans need to stay productively employed.  Unfortunately corporate taxes, and other onerous regulations have driven many jobs overseas to places like Ireland, which have benefited greatly from our governments efforts to make production in the U.S. more expensive.  Cap and Tax anyone?

October 9, 2009
Click to view Suvantar's profile

It appears as if some do not really understand how food stamps and so forth really work.  I work for DSS in North Carolina, so I perform these calculations on a daily basis.  I am not going to enter into the fray regarding whether my clients are lazy or not, but I will say that the vast majority of the people on my caseload are age 60+ retirees whose only source of income is Social Security.

 

Those who are younger than that in my specific caseload are generally disable people who draw SSI.  SSI income tops out at $674/month.  That equals a little over $8k a year and that is usually their sole source of income because they are disabled and cannot work.

 

The older retirees might have another source of income, but if they do, it is small.  Otherwise they don't make it onto my caseload because of the nature of the food stamp program, which I'll address shortly.  Basically, they will either have a pension/retirement fund or they will have social security income.  It is systemically impossible for they to have a both and to still qualify for food stamps.

 

Why?

 

Well, I'll keep the basics of it as simple as I can, because information generally doesn't translate very well if you bog it down into details.

 

In short, if you are a single person, the most you can GROSS in a year and qualify for food stamps is just over $14,000.  That's just under $1200/month.  And remember, that is gross income.  If you receive more than that, I deny you out of hand.

 

The maximum that you will receive in benefits as a single person is $200/month.  Realistically, if you are anywhere close to that $1200/month figure listed above, you will not get anywhere close to $200 unless you have shelter expenses that exceed that amount.  The vast majority of the time, my clients who are close to the top of that income amount receive the lowest amount of benefit I can allot, which is $16/month.

 

So basically, the worse off you are, the higher your benefit will be, but it will never be more than $200/month, which more or less comes out to someone eating on about $45.50/wk, or about $6.50 a day.  That is pretty unfathomable to most people.  And keep in mind, to even get that $6.50/day, you have to demonstrate to me that your situation is so catastrophic that you more or less have no income at all.  Of any sort.  Period.

 

The gross income limit is flat.  There is no way to raise it except to owe some amount of court ordered child support, (and to prove to me you are paying it), that brings your income down to that limit.  If you are over the gross, it doesn't matter how much your bills are.  You are just automatically ineligible.

 

On that level, the supposition that people who receive food stamps are somehow living the high life at the expense of others has always been pretty ludicrous to me.

 

But then again, what I see in my clients every day generally doesn't match up with the caricatures of them that a lot of people would have you believe anyway.

October 9, 2009
Click to view Punsalot's profile

Someone else said it, but i liked the idea, so I'm going to paraphrase it. 

 

"Blaming our current economic crisis on greed is like blaming an airplane crash on gravity."

October 9, 2009
Click to view lindewy's profile

JohnAB:

 

If it costs $50 per hour to assemble cars in America, and it costs $50 per month to assemble cars in Bosnia, then we Americans can take that money we have saved and spend it elsewhere. We can go to Walmart and buy groceries, or we can go to Macy's and buy our daughters prom dresses with the money we've saved on our cars. We are thereby adding to our American economy. We are also adding to the Bosnian economy (per your example above) by providing work for people in Bosnia whose standard of living is not on a par with ours. $50 per month may a fortune, or it may be preferable to nothing in Bosnia.(I am not conversant enough with the Bosnian economy to say that this is true or not: we are all positing theories here, relative to both wages and child labor laws.)In theory, we would be helping both our American economy and that of Bosnia.

 

October 9, 2009
Click to view bcadnik's profile

Mr Kileyander....

I believe you are the one who has to go back to school for economics CLASS or at least read and watch economic REPORTS MORE OFTEN...WAKE UP, MR.KILEYANDER...!WELFARE PEOPLE ARE ONLY A PERCENTAGE OF THE POOR IN THIS COUNTRY...MOST OF THEM MAY BE UNEDUCATED WHICH DOES NOT ENTAIL NECESSARILY THEY ARE "STUPID", AND HOW CAN YOU QUALIFY THEM ALL AS "LAZY", TAKING ANY RESPONSIBILITY FROM POTENTIAL EMPLOYERS WHICH REJECT THEM  ON DIFFERENT CRITERIA... THERE ARE UNEMPLOYED AND UNDEREMPLOYED COLLEGE GRADUATES WHO WITH A VERY TOUGH ECONOMY SOMETIMES HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO TAKE UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE (EAT YOUR 'STUPID" LABELS)...HOW IN HELL DO YOU EXPECT PEOPLE WHO CANNOT FEED THEMSELVES TO HAVE THE TAX BURDEN ON THEIR BACKS????THE LEAST...HAVE THIS CLEAR, MR KILEYANDER, THE LEAST THE PROFIT VULTURES, IN MOST CASES, THE OWNERS OF THE MEANS OF PRODUCTION, CAN DO IS PAY THEIR SHARE OF INCOME FOR THEIR RAPACIOUS WEALTH HOARDING WHILE PEOPLE MILLIONS GO

HUNGRY IN THE "RICHES (T) FOR A ONLY FEW" COUNTRY IN THE WORLD (104 TONS OF FOOD, GO INTO THE TRASH EACH YEAR...THE WASTE AND THE SHAME, MOSTLY OF RESTAURANTS AND FAST FOOD CHAINS THAT MAKE BILLIONS IN PROFIT...

AND HOW IN THE  WORLD THE WEALTHY DARE TO DENOUNCE IN ABSOLUTE SHAMELESSNESS "WELFARE" PROGRAMS WHEN THEY CRAWLED ON THEIR KNEES BEGGING THE CURRENT ADMINISTRATION FOR A HANDOUT IN THE **BILLIONS** OF DOLLARS (NOT THE 275 DOLLARS / CRUMBS WELFARE RECIPIENTS GET BIWEEKLY)JUST TO KEEP THEIR PROFIT MAKING MONEYSUCKING SCHEMES GOING EVEN USING  BANKS, REAL ESTATE AND INSURANCE COMPANIES AND PROXIES...EAT YOUR GREED OR YOUR MONEY GLUTONNY WILL DEBASE YOU AND LEAVE WITH YOU NO MORE THAN GUILT, SHAME AND PUNISHMENT. NO SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC JUSTICE..NO PEACE..

October 9, 2009
Click to view SurferGeorge's profile

Punsalot wrote:

"Blaming our current economic crisis on greed is like blaming an airplane crash on gravity."

 

NOT blaming the greedy actions of those who undermined our economy is like saying that there is no plane crash.

October 9, 2009
Click to view GrimSmiley's profile

It cracks me how ignorant rich people are! If you are in the top 10% of the wealthy, then you probably made your money doing something financial. You say "It's my God given right to make an honest living here in America". Well if you made your money having ANYTHING to do with this mess we call , then OBVIOUSLY you didn't do it "Honestly" because LOOK AT US!!!!!! 

October 9, 2009
Click to view GrimSmiley's profile

SurferGeorge is Awesome!!!

October 9, 2009
Click to view GrimSmiley's profile

Listening to Kileyander and JMZ 636 is like listeing to GREED itself. Finding this way and thay way to justify te unjustifiable. My guess is they are 2 old white rich men who have enjoyed the benefits of our established system, making their money through the collapse of our economic system, and then trying to convince themselves and others that what they did was right.  So very Sad...

 

PS.  I am a white male by the way so there's no racial bias here.

October 9, 2009
Click to view reallypeople's profile

GET OVER YOUR JEALOUSY MORONS! JUST BECAUSE PEOPLE HAVE MORE MONEY THAN YOU AND/OR ARE WEALTHY DOESNT MEAN THEY DID SOMETHING WRONG. PERHAPS YOU SHOULD GET YOUR LAZY ASSES UP AND MAKE SOMETHING OF YOURSELF!!

 

STOP EFFING WHINING ABOUT RICH PEOPLE.

October 9, 2009
Click to view reallypeople's profile

GRIMSMILEY YOU ARE OBVIOUSLY A JEALOUS MORON. RICH FOLKS ARE SUCCESSFUL BECAUSE MANY OF THEM BUST THEIR ASSES AND WORK HARD. EVERYTHING IS NOT A CONSPIRACY AND EVRYONE ISNT A CROOK.

AND NOT EVERYONE WHO WORKS ON WALL STREET IS BAD. HOW ABOUT YOU FINANCE THAT HOME AND CAR YOU WANT WITH YOUR OWN PIGGY BANK?? OH YEAH YOU NEED THE RICH FOLKS MONEY TO BUY THEM...

 

October 9, 2009
Click to view GrimSmiley's profile

hahaha! The more you deny the truth the angrier you get! You can try and rearrange it anyway you like, but the truth remains the same.

 

As for me. I have been working full-time since the age of 16, I make good money, I am happy with my life. However, I am not like you GREEDY people in that I still care about those less fortunate than me. Can you say the same!? I hope so. Like Jesus said: It easier for a camel to get through the eye of a needle, than for the rich to enter Heaven. You simply cannot obtain such a level of understanding with such a lack of compassion.

October 9, 2009
Click to view GrimSmiley's profile

Also, I didn't say everything is a conspiracy and everyone is a crook. What is it in your head that made you acuse me of that?

 

October 9, 2009
Click to view GrimSmiley's profile

I have many wealthy friends, and even more poor friends. I have been in a position where I had one dollar for dinner, and I've also had times where I ate fillet mignon. I have never been rich, let alone 'super-rich'. We all go through good and bad times. I know people work hard for their money, I know I sure have. To me, what it boild down to is HOW you make your money, and what you do with it.

 

Do you honestly feel in your heart that someone that made BILLIONS of dollars off of a system that literally caused people to lose their life savings (at best) and hoarde that money till the day they die without helping anyone really deserved it?

October 9, 2009
Click to view pevans1's profile

Dear Reallypeople, everyone that I know that is rich was either born with the silver spoon already in their mouth and taught how to keep it there! Or, they are unscrupulous bastards, doing things highly questionable! Or last but not least, just plain lucky! I only know one person that partially did it on his own...And he sells Surity Bonds! Which is just Insurance! Which is just paper! So he makes real good money for selling...Well...

for selling nothing really!Really People!!!

October 9, 2009
Click to view JRockNC's profile

I wasn't going to post anything as I was enjoying the debate between SurferGeorge and Kileyander and JMZ, but this one thing that George said in response to Kiley set me off as the whole crux of the debate.

 

Kiley said:

"It isn't fair that the top 50% of income earners should have to pay 97% of all the income taxes. I agree with president Obama that EVERYONE should have some skin in the game."

 

George replied:

"OK, but again, based on an absolutely equal standard (percentages of income?) How much should a guy making $6.00 an hour pay for milk and bread, and a millionaire?"

 

In the country that I live in I hope that both of these individuals pay the same amount for milk and bread.  Since when should income dictate how much you pay for things?  Again, the free market reigns here because in most cases the guy making $6/hr would be buying his milk and bread from Walmart and the millionaire would eat out or have his or her maid go buy it from a snooty organic store of some sort.  It's all about choice, not greed.

 

I'm in the middle class somewhere.  I pay taxes and I expect the government to provide a service for those taxes like roads, schools, defense, infrastructure, etc.  There are many problems here in America including lazyness, entitlement, lobbiests, unions, the rich folks finding loopholes to avoid taxes, subsidies, etc.  But I think the biggest problem really are the lawyers and who they sometimes ultimately end up being, polititions.  The lawyers and polititions end up making everything so complicated that you need big goverenment to oversee it all.  One shouldn't have to hire tax folks to understand and do your taxes.  Bring on the flat tax.  Income taxes would be pretty simple eh?  "How much did you make in 2009?  Take 20% of that and pay."  Done. 

 

That's my simplistic view on the world.

October 9, 2009
Click to view MasterLegend's profile

The thing in common between a rich jerk and a poor jerk is their short-sightedness. 

 

The difference is the rich one is ambitious and the poor one is lazy.

 

 

October 9, 2009
Click to view pevans1's profile

Dear Reallypeople, everyone that I know that is rich was either born with the silver spoon already in their mouth and taught how to keep it there! Or, they are unscrupulous bastards, doing things highly questionable! Or last but not least, just plain lucky! I only know one person that partially did it on his own...And he sells Surity Bonds! Which is just Insurance! Which is just paper! So he makes real good money for selling...Well...

for selling nothing really!Really People!!!

October 9, 2009
Click to view GrimSmiley's profile

The bottom line is Bill Gates and Linda the janitor both pay (about) the same money for milk, car insurance, car repairs, vehicle registration, electricity, moving violations, parking tickets, ect... on & on, all of the things that we pay for in our society. The only difference is, at the end of the month, Linda MIGHT have enough money to buy something nice to wear (Probably not), and Bill Gates still has 50 Billion Dollars.

 

When I was in the military, the officers would pay a little bit more for everything. I don't think the rich should pay that much more than everyone else, but how about Linda the Janitor pays a little less than what we do now? Just a few hundred dollars less a month for her would mean the world.  

October 9, 2009
Click to view MasterLegend's profile

Nobody on this planet is smart enough to honestly earn a salary above, say $1 million a year.  Nobody is that special.  Engineers, Scientists & Doctors are as smart as they come and they don't command salaries that high. 

 

Corporate & Financial sector Executives who get $5-20+ Million salaries & bonuses, on the other hand, exploit loopholes, influence government officials, essentially steal their wealth in a way that doesn't appear to break existing laws.

 

If we implemented an exponential curve taxation system whereby the higher your salary, the higher your taxes, until it gets to the point where you pay 99% tax, you effectively cap salaries without actually doing it.  Lets see a bank pay someone $100 Million a year so the greedy CEO can take home a comparitively measly $1 Million in salary.

October 9, 2009
Click to view highwayman2's profile

GOOD MORNING AMERICA HOW ARE YOU!!!

October 9, 2009
Click to view Trackmagic's profile

Greed wealth and taxes.

During the tech boom my stock portfolio grew by about 4 times.  From 2001 throgh 2004 I my portfolio grew by nearly ten times from shorting stocks.  Whether you feel thats ethical is your issue, it was 100% legal.

 

My income from shorting stocks was over five times my income as a product line manager.  I paid capital gains on the stock earnings at a tax rate of 64% of what I paid on income I worked 60 hours a week for.

 

When you have money its easy to make money.  I was able to short stocks because I worked hard saved and invested.  The majority of those who can only invest in the stock market through 401's etc don't have the luxury of shorting stocks, nor do they have access to most of the other ways to leverage their assets.

 

It really makes me wonder; Shouldn't there be a progressive tax on capital gains?

October 9, 2009
Click to view highwayman2's profile

the question is greed!  when will you have enough?

October 9, 2009
Click to view highwayman2's profile

im fishing then hitting the trails for a bit..might burn some wood for "smores" for the the kids...is that to much?

October 9, 2009
Click to view KrisR71's profile

There is nothing wrong with greed, but it is how we use it as a group.  If you use greed as a tool to better yourself and it is not at the expense/detriment of others then it becomes a worthwhile tool.  But if your greed causes personnel harm to others, then you should reassess how to achieve the goals you are aiming for.  At this juncture in the "recession" I don't believe people are being greedy but holding on to brace for more bad or wait out until the recovery begins.

Greed is also in ones perspective.  Some might say my wife and I are greedy because we are in the top 10% if not 5% of earners, but we also work 50-60hours a week running our business, we also pay a high tax, mostly because we are honest citizens and if you talked to my wife you can hear her complain how we work to pay someone else.

October 9, 2009
Click to view SpartanEL's profile

Greed has always been with us.  It was only when it was

combined with the freedom of the Constitution that the US

became the world-revolutionizing country.

It was perceived early, however, that unfettered greed

and freedom was was a bad idea.

We have laws protecting people from predation for a reason;

stronger people will always try to dominate the weak.

That is why big, powerful business demands big,

powerful government to oversee it and protect the weak

from being dominated by the strong.  We as a people also

need to take responsibility for not being preyed upon,

but we need strong law, strong legislators, and strong

courts that are not influenced by the strong business

influences.

The pendulum has swung in favor of big business, but

the failure of big business in the last year is proof

that out-of-control greed is a disease.

Greed can be good - it produced the highest standard of

living the planet has ever seen.  But it needs to be

tempered by responsibility.  If business is not willing

to do this, we need to enforce this discipline on

ourselves through our only means; our government.

If we don't boom and bust cycles will continue,

robbing people of the promise of freedom in America.

 

 

October 9, 2009
Click to view redcat10's profile

On the subject of "greed" let me say this:

America's rich/elite are terrified of what our new president represents and are fighting tooth and nail to dehumanize him.  I've read and seen in print-media/television news reports, the continous negative, debasing, cruel and heartless lables heaved upon President Obama and it sickens me beyond measure.  It is tellingly apparent that, power, selfishness and the acquisition of super-wealth has become more important than being American.  Our country in it's present economic state, stands for nothing, serves no purpose and represents a vicious cycle of haves and have-nots.  Those in our government who are supposed to represent "we the people" are the pawns and instigators of our system of capitalism gone "greed on steroids.  We continue to vote for these traitors to American ideals and have no one to blame but ourselves for our present predictament.  We've allowed the greed of large companies, to force higher worker production (for lower wages) from their lower-level employees, while they reward their CEO'S rediculously bloated bonus packages. Our average worker/laborer at today's rate of inflation and cost of living, cannot continue to be left out of the loop.  This country was built on the backs of it's poor and hard working majority yet, those who help build the profits of American companies are not welcomed to share in those profits.

When are we as God-fearing, hard working and sacrificing people going to wake up and see the truth staring us in the face.  We have lost our ability to aspire to reach for the American Dream and the rich have taken that ability from us.  God help us all if the present state of affairs continues.

October 9, 2009
Click to view illdecibel's profile

I would like to discuss specifically the greed of banks, cable companies, and insurance companies.  They treat the customers like crap and squeeze money out of us each day while the CEO's live off enough money to match the revenue of small countries.  Banks demand payments, charge us fees to get our own money out and invest our money in investments that nearly crippled the world economy.  Cable comopanies get 100+ average from each househould and since digital conversion are going to take in even more profits still while treating the customers like crap.  Ever called Verizon or Comcast for service?  Insurance companies well the CEO's average salary is around 8 million a year but when you are sick or car needs repair look at how they scrutinize the policies to give you grief in your time of need.  While you fork over hundreds of dollars each year for the what if!  True reform will require those who've been getting rich for years and working the system to loose money...and for that reason I truly believe true reform will never happen!  Greed is America.  I could keep going on into the housing market but I think my point has been made.  I'm just saying why we continue to build in flood zones is crazy to me.  By the way I brought my house it wasn't in a flood zone and I did a refi and now I'm in zone 3 the most expensive.  Rarely do people who need it have it (Katrina) and ones that don't need it pay mandatory through FEMA (30 mintues inland near no water)!?!  Why isn't flood and home owners insurance one entity?  Why am I paying for a 1% chance in 100 years of flooding (reason for my mandatory flood policy)?  You just can't win!

October 10, 2009
Click to view hurmic's profile

redcat10 and illdecible- I fully agree with your comments. I was just reading about the BILLIONS read that, BBBBBillions, not MMMMMillions that banks are raking in on overdraft fees and the slimy way they ensure they get the most. For years I've said that banks are worse than credit card companies because in many cases the outcome of an overdraft is like charging 50% interest! Here in the midwest, something else that makes banks stand out as big profit organizations is the fact that there is frequent overboard remodeling, very small towns with more banks than the population can seemingly support, and new banks that look like McCastles. All this and they were crying for money last year? Granted the economy was not the greatest and yes, several large institutions did close down or were swallowed by larger ones. But I can't help wondering if all their top executives would have cut their salaries and bonuses in half, bringing them down to more realistic figures, a large portion of their money problems could have been averted. It's called a "budget" and "cutting back" when your income does not support your lifestyle. But the powers that be, who profit by this way of living, also govern the policies that made them wealthy in the first place. Do you think these greedy individuals are all of a sudden going to cut their own profits to spread the wealth around? Motivation= a warm fuzzy? HA! Take a look at the Senate group of only 15 who just rammed the public healthcare option into the ground again- an article in CNN listed statistics of the groups in FAVOR of public healthcare which believe it or not named both political parties and the general public. In addition, the Nurses Association is also vehemently for it. But let's look at the opposition: RX companies spending over $1 million daily to oppose it and health insurance companies that would be forced to offer more competitive premiums. So theoretically speaking, even if 90% of the population were in favor of a law to their benefit, if the 10% remaining are billion$ companies, they can effectively vote down whatever the majority wants! And which side is squeeling about socialism?????

October 10, 2009
Click to view MRT48's profile

Greed is only part of American's problems. I think bigger than that is "WASTE". We can figure out more ways to waste money than imaginable - like solid gold toilets! Who in the heck need to sit their behind on a gold toilet when there are so many people without a roof over their head. The concepts of excess and need are off the scale. Not that I think a person should not enjoy some of the finer things in life, especially when they can afford it. But when you have so much that all that's left for you to buy is a solid gold toilet while others around you are homeless and starving, all the is left to say is GOD BLESS YOU AND GIVE YOU EVERYTHING THAT YOU DESERVE, AND I DO MEAN "EVERYTHING"!

October 11, 2009
Click to view hurmic's profile

Don't get me going on waste and fraud. For the amount of this that's going on in Medicare and Medicaid alone, they could fund an entire new segment of the population!I used to do registration work in an ER. Welfare mother comes into the ER cuz her kid has a fever. Because she can't afford to spend $3 at the 24 hr drugstore for children's tylenol, she spends 3 hours in the ER and gets it free. Meantime, the toddler who is with her starts fussing because he's not getting enough attention. She says, oh,look at that owie on your finger(a hangnail)- let's let the dr take a look at that. Three hours later, almost $300 charged to Medicaid for 2 kids, plus $5.95 for children's Tylenol, she leaves. She could have waited till the next day to go to a clinic, thereby cutting the charge in half, or someone could have handed her a $5 bill and she would have purchased the tylenol herself, saving the taxpayer over $300!This is just one small example in one night in the ER!

October 11, 2009
Click to view FayWalk's profile

I DON'T have time to worry about greed. I'm a newly single parent (separated) due to spousal substance abuse problems.  I'm struggling to make ends meet for myself and 4 children, w/No support (no welfare). I also have to provide for our psychological well-beings. I'm struggling to make sure we keep our utilities running, because we've met the misfortune of them being shut off a few times. (No fun there). It's hard, and requires patience and discipline just to live.  I DO worry about making sure we maintain a roof overhead and quality foods to nourish and sustain us.  I know none of this offers any fuel to fan the flames of this GREEDY debate, but this discussion should've taken place long ago.  I believe that much of what is happening was foreseen by those involved and bystanders who sat and did nothing, probably because they were being paid not to, or just ashamed via guilty association. Some greed is useful and necessary, especially when you need to share your accumulations with others who depend on you.  Greed becomes a problem when its illusions blind you, and dull your sense of duty and responsibility, and when it corrupts you into believing that you are somehow above the law, and more worthy than other people. 

October 14, 2009
Click to view drfeelgoodxx's profile

The only way we will rid of greed, is to HANG every last lobbyist,politician, judges, and ceo's that all push and accept lobbyists funds.

 

A lobbyist means that its for the corperations not the people THEREFOR ITS TREASON!

 

Bush, Obama ALMOST ALL OF OUR POLITICIANS ARE GUILTY OF IT AND NEED TO BE THROWN OUT OF OFFICE!

 

Our government is sold out to Big Business/ the Vatican. They are only out to help their collegues not us.

 

These men are CRIMINALS THAT TAKE LOBBIED MONEY AND PUSH CORPERATE VIEWS TO BETTER THE CORPERATIONS! EVERY LAST ONE OF THESE PIECES OF **** DESERVE TO BE HUNG FOR TREASON!

October 14, 2009
Click to view drfeelgoodxx's profile

And whoever said greed was good is IGNORANT! Greed is NEVER GOOD AND YOU MUST BE A GREEDY PERSON THEREFOR YOU DON'T DESERVE TO BE A U.S. CITIZEN BECAUSE because you don't believe in EQUALITY! CAPITALISM WAS CREATED BY PARTY POLITICS OUR COUNTRY WAS FOUNDED BY INDEPENDENTS THEN TURNED INTO PARTIES BECAUSE OF GREED SO GREED MUST BE ABOLISHED!

October 15, 2009
Click to view frozenwizard's profile
October 15, 2009
Click to view frozenwizard's profile
October 17, 2009
Click to view johnknows's profile

OBAMA is the GREEDIEST person i've ever seen. He and his liberal friends want to control EVERY aspect of your life and they're banking on the fact that most people are too stupid to notice.

October 20, 2009
Click to view IPich1983's profile
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It's funny. Many gay people want "tolerance" and be respected. I understand that. Until a person disagrees with their lifestyle then the homosexual seems to think he or she has every right to pound them with insults and hatred.
October 21, 2009
Click to view RobRoyR's profile

The Republican Party members are the greediest people I've ever seen. They control every aspect of your life with money and politics. With the election of President Obama the people finally showed their displeasurer with the antics of a Republican President. The greed is reflected in every policy that the republicans back. They want a bigger piece of the healthcare pie. Do you see them complaining about the bonuses that the big banks and finance companies are giving to their employees, it is our tax money going back to them in political contributions. Now comes the time of year when they want to feel good by donating to the poor. Why, to keep the poor in their place. This is done rather than taking action on issues that will make everyones life better during the rest of the year.

October 23, 2009
Click to view humanfaith's profile

Greedy Americans ?

 

The handicap American legal justice system can see the wound of sub prime mortgage crisis and now stress on credit and the economy. We believe it is time to change our corrupted social justice system by realizing that the stone age is gone. The social justice system of our great nation is at great risk by politically appointed authorities who have no idea what the rule of conduct is and how to control lawless lawyers and business.

 

It is time to upgrade wounded constitution by changing mental stage of all judges. The law of nature can be changed once we are ready to restore dignity . The system of case before a court for social justice is corrupted beyond recognition. We believe it is almost that time to reverse the phrase “nation under lawyer” back to “nation under God”.

 

Buying a house is not as easy as it should be a human faith member nightmare begins with the bank and lawless lawyer. Minority borrowers in the United State are three times more likely than whites to receive high-rate mortgages, especially those who do not speck the English language ,a disparity that far exceeds similar nationwide data, according to an analysis of bank-loan reports. Owning a home is the American Dream. But who can really buy the dream when lawless lawyers and unregulated business care for them-self instate of poor homeowner who becomes victim of many unregulated charges, points attorneys fees and drive by appraisal .

 

Minorities are still less likely than whites to be approved for home mortgage loans . Certain inner-city neighborhoods cannot generate the credit to bring appropriate properties into home ownership. There are more homes in the market for sale this year then ever before in history. Poor working-class families, and households with children cannot afford just closing cost and attorney fee if banks and attorneys are working to get dirty rich.

 

 

October 23, 2009
Click to view humanfaith's profile

The American Bull ?

 

The Honeybee “Nahel Asul” Abu Bin Adam was a young child in Multan Pakistan, it was July 11th 1977, the day was very hot and humid one of Abu’s friend from school decided to skip school for that day to go and eat fresh honey from bee hives. Abu and his friend decided to take the a few cows, buffalos, sheep’s and his friends dog Tommy for herding and their job was to keep eyes on the animals and take them to the river so they can eat and swim. Abu’s favorite ride was the bull ride by holding the bulls horns and Abu’s job was to keep eyes on the animals and to twist their tail whenever they slowed down. Abu Saint. humanfaith

 

 

October 24, 2009
Click to view built4drama's profile

It seems to me that everybody is mad. There is much to be mad about. Greed resides in us all, it is the American way of life. The fact that White American are stuck on themselves. While they travel into the city to work. They take with them, their funds. Leaving the city abandoned.

December 4, 2009
Click to view caiwei's profile
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