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Thread: What is sense in paper money?

  1. #1 What is sense in paper money? 
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    Could somebody explain what is sense to
    use paper money but not gold or silver instead?Or paper certificates which prove peoples property of gold or silver?
    If people would use gold money there will be
    no inflation.


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  3. #2  
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    If there's no inflation, but the productivity of your country increases, then you would get deflation, because the price of everything would be falling. That's ok for a lot of purposes, but it can complicate your banking system if the collateral on the banks loans gets to be less valuable than the money they lent out.

    Basically nobody will be willing to lend anybody else any money, because they might as well stuff it under a mattress and wait for its value to go up.


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    Basically nobody will be willing to lend anybody else any money, because they might as well stuff it under a mattress and wait for its value to go up.
    Maybe banks could just increase percentage
    rates?And also in 19 century in Europe lot
    of countries used lot of gold money.How did
    they solve problems you mentioned?
    In our times economies in the world don't
    show great increases in economy growth,
    probably this is partially because no new expensive type of goods appear.So I think we may avoid problems with deflation.
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  5. #4  
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    Paper money does make sense, because we need money in our current economic system for economic activity (a better system could be tought of as expressed in the movie 'Zeitgeist Addendum', but in the meantime we're stuck with it)

    The second a country decides to use gold as money, the country needs to "buy" or "borrow" the money it needs to operate, that makes even less sense, its a scam, its as if you had to pay taxes for royalties going to John Doe the alphabet banker for the right in your country to use the letters of the alphabet.

    Imo, What money is made of is less important than WHO gets to issue the money, Nations should issue money for the benefit of all people, as opposed to private banks.
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    Money used to be on the gold standard until relatively recently. Basically the problem is that there's an "ideal" amount of money the economy needs to function. Too little and you get the current economic climate. Too much and you get inflation.

    If your money is stuck on something like gold, it can't keep pace with economic growth. Eventually your economy becomes stifled by the relative value of money vs. what it can buy.

    In the US, this was a major issue during the 1890 recession. See Populist Party. And literary criticism suggests that the Wizard of Oz was a parable of the gold standard issue.
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  7. #6  
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    I think gold money is a good idea; it could easily be universal too.
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    paper money is lighter and more compact, easier for thieves to steal and hide

    I think that IOU's are an ideal form of money.
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    Well if you're really pro gold as money, there's always the Krugerrand. Totally legal tender in South Africa, not to mention accepted by villains in bad B movies the world over
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    I don't want gold, I want water, food and shelter. I think these things are more universal than gold. Why can't we just share everything?
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  11. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by marcusclayman
    I don't want gold, I want water, food and shelter. I think these things are more universal than gold. Why can't we just share everything?
    A combination of too many people and not enough production is constantly creating situations where, if you divided everything evenly , then absolutely everyone would be getting too little to eat.

    Just because there are rich and poor, doesn't mean the rich actually have enough wealth to feed all the poor (though they could certainly feed some of them). There are simply too many poor people for every one rich person. It's better to let things be uneven enough so that some people have full enough stomachs to be able to work without getting sick from the strain of it. (A starving person may be too weak)

    The other problem is that, in case of many third world countries, whenever the first world tries to share food with them, their own corrupt politicians seize the food at the borders, then keep it for themselves or sell it on the open market, and never reaches the starving people anyway. Trying to fix that is a problem for the ages. Nobody seems to have any good solutions.
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    A combination of too many people and not enough production is constantly creating situations where, if you divided everything evenly , then absolutely everyone would be getting too little to eat.

    Just because there are rich and poor, doesn't mean the rich actually have enough wealth to feed all the poor (though they could certainly feed some of them). There are simply too many poor people for every one rich person. It's better to let things be uneven enough so that some people have full enough stomachs to be able to work without getting sick from the strain of it. (A starving person may be too weak)

    The other problem is that, in case of many third world countries, whenever the first world tries to share food with them, their own corrupt politicians seize the food at the borders, then keep it for themselves or sell it on the open market, and never reaches the starving people anyway. Trying to fix that is a problem for the ages. Nobody seems to have any good solutions.
    Before I share my thoughs about food I want to adress population. The ecosystems are being destroyed by human expansion and animal and plant diversity is being decimated. The oceans are being depleted faster than they can recover. At some point in time "growth" of population will not be sustainable, so eventually we will have no choice to limit the number of kids to 2 or 3 or there will be serious repercutions, and I say if we are going to face this situation we might as well limit now. China has a one child policy which is to drastic because its not close to equilibrium, imo its better to have a limit of 2(when birth rate is high) or 3(when birth rate is low) by use of incentives and education.

    Theres enough wealth and food production potential for everyone to have a house and food. Its the capitalist system thats crap in some respects.

    As for 3rd world countries politicians being corrupt, in many cases the west shares part of the blame, when politicians want to distribute the countries wealth more equitably the CIA/MI6 sends economic hit men to bribe them and then jackals to assassinate them or organize a coup if they dont take the corruption path that plunders the countries ressources


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    For 300 years Britain has outsourced mayhem. Finally it's coming home
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax
    Quote Originally Posted by marcusclayman
    I don't want gold, I want water, food and shelter. I think these things are more universal than gold. Why can't we just share everything?
    A combination of too many people and not enough production is constantly creating situations where, if you divided everything evenly , then absolutely everyone would be getting too little to eat.
    Not true, kojax. You seem to have forgotten our last thread about this. The world GDP is $54.62 trillion. The world pop is 6,706,993,152. Therefore the average per capita income of a human is $8,152. Our pre industrial ancestors had a per capita income of about $1400.

    Is the problem getting better or worse? Better. The world population grows at a 1.188%. The world GDP grows at over 5% (current economic implosion not withstanding obviously).
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    Just to beat the point home: falling price of food over last century.
    "A witty saying proves nothing." - Voltaire
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  15. #14  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Numsgil
    Quote Originally Posted by kojax
    Quote Originally Posted by marcusclayman
    I don't want gold, I want water, food and shelter. I think these things are more universal than gold. Why can't we just share everything?
    A combination of too many people and not enough production is constantly creating situations where, if you divided everything evenly , then absolutely everyone would be getting too little to eat.
    Not true, kojax. You seem to have forgotten our last thread about this. The world GDP is $54.62 trillion. The world pop is 6,706,993,152. Therefore the average per capita income of a human is $8,152. Our pre industrial ancestors had a per capita income of about $1400.

    Is the problem getting better or worse? Better. The world population grows at a 1.188%. The world GDP grows at over 5% (current economic implosion not withstanding obviously).
    You convinced me that food production could go up, but not that enough food is being produced already. What percent of the current GDP actually consists in food, rather than Corvettes, I-Pods, and home computers? Just because we have a large GDP, doesn't mean it takes the form we need it to take.

    I suppose we could shift it. The thing to remember, however, is that most economic equilibriums favor producing what is easiest to produce, over producing something that would be harder to produce. If we tried to shift our production too overwhelmingly in one direction, we'd find that we actually produced a much smaller GDP at that point. How much smaller? I don't know. Maybe it would still be big enough.


    Quote Originally Posted by icewendigo
    As for 3rd world countries politicians being corrupt, in many cases the west shares part of the blame, when politicians want to distribute the countries wealth more equitably the CIA/MI6 sends economic hit men to bribe them and then jackals to assassinate them or organize a coup if they dont take the corruption path that plunders the countries resources
    Usually that "redistribution" involves seizing assets that belong to foreign investors/countries. It's a perversion of the Communist ethic, which when properly applied would only allow a country to "nationalize" assets that belong to its own citizens, not assets that belong to the citizens of a foreign country.

    If, for example, Castro decides to "nationalize" some oil refineries in his country that were built by American capitalists, then the communist ethic he's invoking should only allow him to transfer ownership to the US government, not his own government.

    Basically, a lot of countries use communism as an excuse to screw foreign nations out of their investments, and then they're all surprised when those foreign powers attack them. Nobody would have cared about Cuba going communist if, in the process of seizing all of its citizens wealth, it also assumed all of its citizens debts, and continued payments on those debts.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax
    You convinced me that food production could go up, but not that enough food is being produced already.
    Again, check out the falling price of food over last century. That's just America, obviously, but I think the point is dramatic enough.

    I would challenge you to find even a single long term (ie: 30+ years, or long enough for economic ups and downs to even out) statistic which would support your claim that "A combination of too many people and not enough production is constantly creating situations where, if you divided everything evenly , then absolutely everyone would be getting too little to eat. "

    It's very easy to make generalizations about the world based on what you see and hear. It's quite another to back it up with facts.
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    It's late so I won't back this up, I will later though. I just wanted to shoot this out there because it's obvious yet seems to have been overlooked.

    The value of money is relative to what it can buy, and the price of products is relative to how much money is in circulation.

    For example, if you get paid a buck a day a hundred years ago, and a hundred bucks today; an apple back then cost 1 cent, and today costs 1 dollar, it's the same value of money, and the same relative cost.

    This is a bad example, but I will find the facts tomorrow if I'm not beaten to it.

    This reminds me of 1984, how they say "The quality of living has increased no less than 20% in the past year" to commemorate it they raise the rations of things to the level they were already at, or something similar. I forgot the details, but the point should be clear enough. Value and cost are relative.
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  18. #17  
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    salaries of the blue collared worker are not so relative
    ~ One’s ultimate perfection depends on the development of all the members of society ~ Kabbalah
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    Quote Originally Posted by marcusclayman
    It's late so I won't back this up, I will later though. I just wanted to shoot this out there because it's obvious yet seems to have been overlooked.

    The value of money is relative to what it can buy, and the price of products is relative to how much money is in circulation.

    For example, if you get paid a buck a day a hundred years ago, and a hundred bucks today; an apple back then cost 1 cent, and today costs 1 dollar, it's the same value of money, and the same relative cost.

    This is a bad example, but I will find the facts tomorrow if I'm not beaten to it.

    This reminds me of 1984, how they say "The quality of living has increased no less than 20% in the past year" to commemorate it they raise the rations of things to the level they were already at, or something similar. I forgot the details, but the point should be clear enough. Value and cost are relative.
    Assuming you're directing this to me, I'm well aware of inflation, and it was taken in to account. Pretty much every economic model takes it in to account (the result is called "real" wages or prices).
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  20. #19  
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    Alright, so long as it's taken into account

    But another detail I overlooked in my critiquing

    the average per capita income doesn't take into account the difference between economic classes

    what is "average" doesn't mean it is "common"

    eliminate the top 10% of the income, and that 8kish figure would probably drop in half if not more.

    Nonetheless, is GDP measured in "real" prices?

    Like how you say "Our pre industrial ancestors had a per capita income of about $1400. "

    Is this $1400 the value of their income today? Because 1400 bucks back then could do a lot more than 8kish could do today.
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    Quote Originally Posted by marcusclayman
    the average per capita income doesn't take into account the difference between economic classes

    what is "average" doesn't mean it is "common"

    eliminate the top 10% of the income, and that 8kish figure would probably drop in half if not more.
    Definitely. Most wealth is held by very few people. Distribution is always a problem with Capitalism.

    But over the long term, a rising tide really does lift all ships. The median American is far richer than their grandparents or great grandparents were. (I don't have data to back that up. But it should be fairly self evident.)

    Nonetheless, is GDP measured in "real" prices?

    Like how you say "Our pre industrial ancestors had a per capita income of about $1400. "

    Is this $1400 the value of their income today? Because 1400 bucks back then could do a lot more than 8kish could do today.
    It's in 2008 dollars. See this link. Basically it's possible to estimate the wealth of the average farmer from all sorts of different societies over time based on descriptions, paintings, archeology, etc.

    And the estimate is approximately $600-$700 1985 dollars per capita (with a family of 4 earning like $2400). Converting that to 2008 dollars is about $1400 per capita.

    Whenever a pre industrial society invented something new (the plow, etc.), the technology translated eventually into an increase in population instead of an increase in average wealth. This is called the Malthusian catastrophe. Which means that pre industrial societies the world over had basically the same wealth level.

    Spanish Conquistadors were not generally wealthier than the Aztecs they conquered. It wasn't like the US vs. Afghanistan, where one was a super economic power. The Spanish just had better weapons.

    But something magical happened after the Industrial Revolution. We somehow broke free of Malthusian population dynamics. In modern developed countries population growth is well below (real) GDP growth.

    Which means there's more and more wealth per person every year, not less. And this trend is strong enough in the developed countries to offset places where real GDP growth is negative (like Zimbabwe). The average human is getting richer every (average) year.

    Basically the global real GDP growth is something like 5%.

    And the global population growth is 1.1%.
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    You bring up another point, farmers are less common today. The majority of families then where farmers, back then they were self sufficient, though they didn't make much they had all they needed.

    Nowadays the farmer family is rare, and not self sufficient. They rely on credit, insurance and subsidies, not to mention truck rentals, seeds and fertilizer.

    The majority of people live in urban settings, and are also not self sufficient. They have to pay rent. Depending on the distance they have to travel for work, they have to pay for transportation. They have to decide between food and fun, quality and quantity.

    People cope with the stress of population density in a variety of ways, A: they act more individualistic and B: they spend more money, and probably have more diseases as well, forcing them to spend more money.

    So you have to wonder, who has the better quality of life, Farmer back then, or Urbanite today. And you have to be carefull not to consider "quality of life" to be by your own modern standards, but universally accepted one's.

    The farmer has more freedom and private property, two things your average Urbanite wouldn't even know what to do with.
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    Pre industrial farmers might have been self sufficient, but they were also dirt poor. Modern economies are about trade, which is really just a fancy word for not self reliant.

    I'm a computer programmer by trade. I can't eat computer programs. If you threw me into the wilderness, I would not be able to survive on my computer programming skills (unless there's an iPhone app for wilderness survival :P)

    Trade allows specialization, which allows for increased production, and thus increased wealth. Not being self reliant isn't necessarily a bad thing.

    B: they spend more money, and probably have more diseases as well, forcing them to spend more money.
    Life expectancy today is something like 30+ years greater than pre industrial societies. We do not generally suffer from parasites during our lifetime like our ancestors did. Childhood death is extremely rare. Parents losing a child is the exception, not the norm.

    In every measurable way we are healthier than our pre industrial ancestors. So no, urbanites are not more diseased.

    We can afford to eat "exotic" foods from far away lands, like bananas, pineapples, papayas, etc. Our diversity of diet is far greater than our pre industrial ancestors.

    Our clothing has finer texture and more thread count.

    We have amazing amounts of leisure time. Whereas our ancestors might work dawn to dusk 6 days a week (7th is sabbath), we can afford to work only 40 hours a week with weeks to months of vacation time a year. And we can spend that vacation time going to far away and exotic lands.

    We can also choose to do work we find enjoyable (or at least slightly tolerable). Whereas our ancestors viewed work as a sort of garden of eden punishment (you will live from the sweat of your brow).

    In every tangible way I can think to measure, we are richer today than our pre industrial ancestors. Life has gone from an absolutely miserable toil just to survive to a mostly tolerable existence.
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  24. #23  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Numsgil
    We have amazing amounts of leisure time. Whereas our ancestors might work dawn to dusk 6 days a week (7th is sabbath), we can afford to work only 40 hours a week with weeks to months of vacation time a year.
    ...while having a higher standard of living than our ancestors. If you were happy with not owning a car, living in a small one-bedroom apartment, and eating uninteresting food - basically a lifestyle equivalent to that enjoyed by most pre-industrial farmers - you could probably get by on 20 hours of work/week or less.
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  25. #24  
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    alright very good points, lol, of course I ignore the obvious

    I clearly don't know much about history and economix
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    Quote Originally Posted by Numsgil
    Quote Originally Posted by marcusclayman
    the average per capita income doesn't take into account the difference between economic classes

    what is "average" doesn't mean it is "common"

    eliminate the top 10% of the income, and that 8kish figure would probably drop in half if not more.
    Definitely. Most wealth is held by very few people. Distribution is always a problem with Capitalism.

    But over the long term, a rising tide really does lift all ships. The median
    The concentration of wealth empoverishes the population because wealth is also power, power to tilt the balance even further in your favor. The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. The reason this is not apparent is because technology and production methods are raising productivity and the playing field. Imo the average family in the 60s could own a home and live on one income, i doubt this is the case now for a lot of families two income are now required to make ends meet.

    In my experience the quality of life is superior in France because workers get much more vacation time work less hours than in north america. They got this in part because they stood shoulder to shoulder and fought for it instead of partaking in the rat race while seeing each other as adversairies

    An other problem is the need for scarcity or the need for need, preventing problem and really solving problems permanently are not profitable, capitalism thrives on addicted captured consumers even turning a profit from problems you artficially create, its in the oil industry interest to kill electric cars which Chevron has managed to do. A disaster is "good" for the economy because you have to rebuild which is a freaking aberation


    Heres an interesting perspective its the
    Zeitgeist Movement Orientation Presentation
    I disagree with some of the aspects of the movement itself and with some parts of their solution, but they nonetheless accuratly highlight many of the problems with our current system.
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    Quote Originally Posted by icewendigo
    The concentration of wealth empoverishes the population because wealth is also power, power to tilt the balance even further in your favor. The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. The reason this is not apparent is because technology and production methods are raising productivity and the playing field. Imo the average family in the 60s could own a home and live on one income, i doubt this is the case now for a lot of families two income are now required to make ends meet.
    Be careful here. There was a massive housing bubble in the US during this time period (which has since broke). Likewise, are the dual income households living the same standard? My mom and her family survived on just my grandpa's teacher's salary, and my grandpa owns his home, but their lifestyle was likewise meager.

    So for statements like this it isn't good to make generalizations without facts, because their's an implicit bias built in. Try to find graphs, etc. which would back up your claim.

    From what I can tell, post WW2 the number of college educated workers has risen sharply, with a corresponding increase in wage. That families have two income sources prolly says more about women's lib than about economic necessity.

    In my experience the quality of life is superior in France because workers get much more vacation time work less hours than in north america. They got this in part because they stood shoulder to shoulder and fought for it instead of partaking in the rat race while seeing each other as adversairies
    Have you lived in France? "Better" is an extremely qualitative term in this instance. Europe has a different flavor than the US. In Berlin, poverty is sort of the "in" thing, for instance. Unemployment in general in European countries tends to be chronically high.

    Generally speaking, Americans need to work. They don't like to retire. My Dad, for instance, works 12 hour days. He goes in on weekends. He doesn't have to do this. He's the boss, he can set whatever hours he damn well pleases. He works because he enjoys it and it gives his life meaning.

    My impression is that Europe is chronically unemployed because more people in Europe like not working. Just a different culture.
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    "Try to find graphs, etc. which would back up your claim."
    As soon as you come up with the 60s meagerness chart

    My own experience is that people are living with a similar livestyle as their parents did but both parent are working to get that same lifestyle. I dont count the improvment in technology, my parents did not live in a cave wearing dear skins of the cavemen they had the lifestyle of their time, which improves with time, my father did switch from black&white, color tube, to flatscreen HD tv Not because working conditions changed, its just that the same working conditions allowed him to get current level tech as it has before and its the current level of tech that as improved.

    On the other hand, the gap or ratio between CEO pay to the average employee salary as dramatically increased.

    "Have you lived in France?"
    Yes I have, as well as Austria, Canada and the US.
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    Quote Originally Posted by icewendigo
    "Try to find graphs, etc. which would back up your claim."
    As soon as you come up with the 60s meagerness chart
    Yeah, I couldn't find anything either.

    Real median household income seems to have risen, but I think that includes the demographic shift of women working being more common.

    My own experience is that people are living with a similar livestyle as their parents did but both parent are working to get that same lifestyle. I dont count the improvment in technology, my parents did not live in a cave wearing dear skins of the cavemen they had the lifestyle of their time, which improves with time, my father did switch from black&white, color tube, to flatscreen HD tv Not because working conditions changed, its just that the same working conditions allowed him to get current level tech as it has before and its the current level of tech that as improved.
    It's hard to say for certain. Certainly real GDP has risen substrantially. But that might just say that the rich are richer. And the vast improvements in consumer electronics really complicates any measurements, since in absolute terms they're considerably better. As I said median income seems to have risen, but I think that includes dual income families being more prevelant. Or maybe it's that minorities are beginning to make more money, and that helps bolster up the median.

    My guess is that traditional jobs (teachers, fireman, etc.) have stayed roughly the same or slightly higher, while the high paying high tech sector has grown significantly. So if you're doing the same thing your parents did, you're probably about the same. But there's a large portion of the young population working high tech jobs not available 30 years ago, and are making $50K+ as a starting salary.

    Certainly I'm personally richer than either of my parents were at my age (they were both teachers in their early 20s).

    "Have you lived in France?"
    Yes I have, as well as Austria, Canada and the US.
    Ah good, you can help temper anyhting I say . Most of what I "know" is just things I've read (Newsweek particularly), so take it all with a grain of salt. Besides living all over the US, I've only (briefly) visited Canada.
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    Most of what I "know" is just things I've read (Newsweek particularly), so take it all with a grain of salt.
    The corporate media has tipped its hands in recent years, many (myself included) are waking up to the unpleasant reality that the media is and has been for many decades Corporate/State Propaganda, the same as in the USSR but much more discrete since people have believed for years it was not propaganda (where as many Russians have always known Pravda was).

    The corporate media Lie straight out, Lie by ommission, Lie by association, deceive by framing the issue/focusing on misleading angles, use Orwellian language to distort how things appear, and shape people's perception of reality.

    One dictator(pro-US) is a President, a Stateman, a noble King, the other(non Pro-US) is a Dictator(even if he won internationally monitored fair elections), a Madman, a unelected Despot(King). The Taliban are ok one day getting funds and red carpet treatment at the state department and Unocal head office, evil the next, Saddam is a faithful ally garding against islamic revolution one day, and evil tyran the next, its like 1984, the message changes to fit the current policies. Pakistan getting nukes without complying to international regulations is a non-issue, Iran complying with international regulations for civilian energy is an ape shit armageddon.
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  31. #30  
    Forum Masters Degree Numsgil's Avatar
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    Jan 2009
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    Well yeah, implicit reporting bias sort of goes without saying. And Newsweek has a known liberal bent. But AFAICT any bias is minimal. More a biased interpretation of facts and rampant editorialization than anything sinister.

    Certainly it doesn't compare to actual propoganda ala WW2 coverage.
    "A witty saying proves nothing." - Voltaire
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