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By all accounts a really bright guy who can see beyond the immediate increase in margins that comes from minimizing salaries. I am connected to a number of folks he is connected to on Linkedin, so I have been seeing a lot of his posts over the last year. Have yet to see anything I really disagree with him on, he definitely gets the probabilistic nature of business, especially in our current economic environment.  I hope that more folks follow his lead. 

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17 minutes ago, LenP said:

By all accounts a really bright guy who can see beyond the immediate increase in margins that comes from minimizing salaries. I am connected to a number of folks he is connected to on Linkedin, so I have been seeing a lot of his posts over the last year. Have yet to see anything I really disagree with him on, he definitely gets the probabilistic nature of business, especially in our current economic environment.  I hope that more folks follow his lead. 

Yes, he is bright and I am happy that his company is enjoying great benefits from his actions. His Twitter feed is a pretty good place to follow, I read about 45 minutes of his posts and I look forward to reading more in the future. 

He also defends his company from being called a fluke. 

 

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I have worked with a lot of companies, and while none were as aggressive with their pay as Gravity is, I have seen stark differences in approaches to pay structures. Companies which look to minimize salaries end up with lesser qualified people and the productivity always reflects that in the end. The ones who aimed to pay slightly above market, by and large ended up with better people and the productivity and work product reflected that as well. In the end, the additional salary costs was nearly always surpassed by additional revenue and profits which would not be there with a less qualified workforce. It is a tough mindset to change with folks though, as it takes a deeper thought process than thinking one level deep, and the companies who try to hire cheap end up hiring cheap in finance and HR as well, so they have less competent people in the places that they need to see visionaries in order to see positive change. It becomes a bit of a trap. 

This is skewed and more obvious in tech companies, but I think true in general as well, just less obvious sometimes. And frankly, all companies are becoming tech companies, like it or not. 

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Fux Newz is the dominate arm of the right-wing propaganda monster. the fkn' 'gop'; the dirty cunts need that bullshit, it's literally a matter of political and ideological survival, 'cause if no one candy coated their turds.. bye bye.

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FAUX "news" does this all the time . . 

". . . the hosts . .  laughed at me on air." 

Just like their acolytes here on PA 

they make zero effort to understand or engage with the issues. 

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4 minutes ago, LenP said:

I have worked with a lot of companies, and while none were as aggressive with their pay as Gravity is, I have seen stark differences in approaches to pay structures. Companies which look to minimize salaries end up with lesser qualified people and the productivity always reflects that in the end. The ones who aimed to pay slightly above market, by and large ended up with better people and the productivity and work product reflected that as well. In the end, the additional salary costs was nearly always surpassed by additional revenue and profits which would not be there with a less qualified workforce. It is a tough mindset to change with folks though, as it takes a deeper thought process than thinking one level deep, and the companies who try to hire cheap end up hiring cheap in finance and HR as well, so they have less competent people in the places that they need to see visionaries in order to see positive change. It becomes a bit of a trap. 

This is skewed and more obvious in tech companies, but I think true in general as well, just less obvious sometimes. And frankly, all companies are becoming tech companies, like it or not. 

After I thought about it, this is likely a last hurrah. If this happened in 1970, we would be a very different country, but the possibility of this being done in 1970 was always zero. Now we are moving rapidly toward full automation and his grand design will likely die a quiet death. Instead of a fluke, they will say it was a noble, but failed experiment.

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21 minutes ago, badlatitude said:

After I thought about it, this is likely a last hurrah. If this happened in 1970, we would be a very different country, but the possibility of this being done in 1970 was always zero. Now we are moving rapidly toward full automation and his grand design will likely die a quiet death. Instead of a fluke, they will say it was a noble, but failed experiment.

I don't think that is the way it will play out. We will always need some people doing some work, it is just that the number of people needed will be fewer and fewer to accomplish the same amount of work, and the nature of the human work will become increasingly skilled in nature. So I think we will see two parallel trends, one that has skilled salaries rising above the rate of inflation as they recoup some of the suppression over the last several decades, while at the same time we see increasing examples of UBI by a different name. In the end, capitalism as we know it is headed towards becoming a relic of a time now past and we will recognize the need to provide a minimum standard of living for everyone, with some folks who can fill the increasingly technical roles becoming the equivalent on a socioeconomic basis of how we used to see doctors and lawyers. The new blue collar middle class will be a combo of freelance or low paid work with UBI to help level them up, while those who an perform the more technical or skilled work will live the equivalent of upper middle income lifestyles that a doctor or lawyer would have in the 60s and 70s. 

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Employees:  Basically you get what you pay for, appreciate and support.

Citizenry:  Basically you get what you pay for, appreciate and support.

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Does better pay make employees work harder?

Or does better pay allow you to just hire the more productive/efficient worker?

 

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4 minutes ago, Left Shift said:

Employees:  Basically you get what you pay for, appreciate and support.

Citizenry:  Basically you get what you pay for, appreciate and support.

Yes. The problem is that far too many people find it easier to think of everything as a zero sum game. The only way for them to get more is to deprive someone else of getting more. The conservatives, or at least many of them, will often argue against the idea that the economy is zero sum when it comes to things like automation, but their behavior betrays them and shows where the true beliefs are. If we want to have a better society, we need better citizens which means we need to invest in them. If we want a better company, that means we need better people inside the company, which means we need to invest in them. You can't grow a garden by shouting at the tomatoes to pull themselves up by their root tips, and you can't grow a society by shouting those without means to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. 

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2 minutes ago, Mike G said:

Does better pay make employees work harder?

Or does better pay allow you to just hire the more productive/efficient worker?

 

I think it is both. Folks who are well payed and appreciated have higher levels of productivity, creativity, and loyalty regardless of skill level when hired. Those who already have higher skill levels will avoid places which do not pay them top dollar and appreciate them. Companies which do manage to hire a highly qualified person for below market rates will quickly lose them. So it is a bit of both I think. 

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3 hours ago, LenP said:

If we want to have a better society, we need better citizens which means we need to invest in them. If we want a better company, that means we need better people inside the company, which means we need to invest in them. You can't grow a garden by shouting at the tomatoes to pull themselves up by their root tips, and you can't grow a society by shouting those without means to pull themselves up by their bootstraps. 

If you were famous, this would become a good quote to hang your hat on. I learned a lesson early in my life that stayed with me. When my business was getting off the ground I became a taskmaster, everything had to happen now, not later. I expected my employees to be as driven as I was and I couldn't understand why they didn't feel the same. People will work hard if you treat them with respect, and make them feel that they are part of a family, reward them generously for a job well done, and always  publicly thank them for the effort. 

We still have the American juggernaut company, who will do anything to be at the pinnacle of business, they will do everything to avoid paying a decent wage that you can live on, they will destroy your ambitions to bring a union, if you lose an arm or a leg from bad safety practices, they will tell the state that they are close to insolvency and cannot afford a big fine for the lax safety. They will go to court and spend millions to prevent your insurance from paying for contraceptives, and deny you leave and childcare subsidies if you get pregnant. 

When you have employers who think greed is more important then decency, you need a union. I think that bringing back unions will cure some of the ugliness in American business. I have no patience or sympathy for any company or CEO who refuses to be a decent employer, It's time to move on from this.

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3 hours ago, LenP said:
3 hours ago, Mike G said:

Does better pay make employees work harder?

Or does better pay allow you to just hire the more productive/efficient worker?

 

I think it is both. Folks who are well payed and appreciated have higher levels of productivity, creativity, and loyalty regardless of skill level when hired. Those who already have higher skill levels will avoid places which do not pay them top dollar and appreciate them. Companies which do manage to hire a highly qualified person for below market rates will quickly lose them. So it is a bit of both I think. 

I can tell my experience in working for a small (~15 people) industrial services company. We hired the best, paid above average wage, and employees beyond their 1st year got an increasing cut of profit sharing that resulted in mechanic's helpers buying themselves new pickups for Christmas. Our guys did not ass around, waste time, leave a mess behind. One of our trademarks was leaving a job site cleaner than we found it. One of MY trademarks (and I insisted on making all the techs & helpers toe the same line) is that when you're working in an enclosure with 12 or 16 or 24 bolts holding it shut, not only do they ALL go back in but you cross-tighten.

If you cannot be trusted to do the simple, less-important jobs utterly correctly to the Nth degree, how can you be trusted to do the important jobs?

We always had a long list of plant engineers calling us, even in the crash years.

- DSK

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This can't have happened.

According to JerKZ, capitalist theory mandates that any increase in a minimum wage will create unemployment and/or drive companies out of business.

He has so stated many times.

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6 hours ago, badlatitude said:

After I thought about it, this is likely a last hurrah. If this happened in 1970, we would be a very different country, but the possibility of this being done in 1970 was always zero. Now we are moving rapidly toward full automation and his grand design will likely die a quiet death. Instead of a fluke, they will say it was a noble, but failed experiment.

but he is one of the ones setting the automation.  Why would this die.  Certainly Sullair hasn't failed.

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I hired an electrician to do a job last summer. Before committing to the job, I asked him what he thought it would cost.

 He told me that because it was a side job, he'd charge $12 an hour. I didn't blink.

 The first day he worked for about 4 hours before he had to get home. It was a Friday, and he'd told me he couldn't come back until Monday.

 I gave him $200. He didn't even look at the money, just pocketed it and left.

 Monday when he showed up he said that he wasn't sure that the rest of the job would cost as much as I'd paid him, but he appreciated having the cash for the weekend.

 I just nodded, and said not to worry about it.

It took him all day, and a long hot day it was, to finish the job.

 At the end of the day I handed him another $500.

 He looked confused. "I think you got your math wrong. I think I owe you some money"

 I told him that I wouldn't pay him less than I paid the Grand neighbor to mow the lawn, to do a professional's job. (No, I don't pay the 12 Y/O girl that much, but it was just a point...)

 He appreciated it. His boss only paid him $15 PMH (Billed him out @ $120 PMH), and he was a professional licensed electrician, a licensed helicopter pilot, and a hell of a nice guy.

 And it was still $1,000 less than the local electrical contractors wanted, and they couldn't schedule my job (too small) for 2 months.

 

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The approach to staffing is so dependent on the market in which you are dealing.  One one hand you have the perfect free market in such things as frozen peas.  The only way to control payroll is to automate, but unfortunately it does not do as good a job for many of the tasks as the labour that will gladly take whatever you will pay them.  This is the classic "I'll go bankrupt if I give you a raise" as the business is a price taker.   This usually requires unions or government to solve. On the other hand there is the monopoly which is a price giver. If the CEO is making 100 times the lowest paid employee, his board are jerks and deserve everything they get, which usually is less than knowledgeable and enthusiastic employees and non-maximal return on capital, but who cares, they own the market.  In-betweens are in-betweens.  Given his market, he will do fine.

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3 hours ago, Mrleft8 said:

I hired an electrician to do a job last summer. Before committing to the job, I asked him what he thought it would cost.

 He told me that because it was a side job, he'd charge $12 an hour. I didn't blink.

 The first day he worked for about 4 hours before he had to get home. It was a Friday, and he'd told me he couldn't come back until Monday.

I don't think that many of those struggling people really know how much disposable income we lucky ones actually have. 

It is an indication of the extent to which so many working folks have been ground down by savage capitalism. 

We pay all those people $25 plus 

And you are correct, most of them don't ask for it, and don't expect it. 

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21 hours ago, AJ Oliver said:

they make zero effort to understand or engage with the issues. 

Oh the irony of YOU posting this here.  You are the poster child for being closed minded on any issue you disagree with.  Anyone who doesn't agree with you and is in lockstep with you is immediately labeled a "reichista".  It's a reflex, it's not understanding.  

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21 hours ago, LenP said:

I don't think that is the way it will play out. We will always need some people doing some work, it is just that the number of people needed will be fewer and fewer to accomplish the same amount of work, and the nature of the human work will become increasingly skilled in nature. So I think we will see two parallel trends, one that has skilled salaries rising above the rate of inflation as they recoup some of the suppression over the last several decades, while at the same time we see increasing examples of UBI by a different name. In the end, capitalism as we know it is headed towards becoming a relic of a time now past and we will recognize the need to provide a minimum standard of living for everyone, with some folks who can fill the increasingly technical roles becoming the equivalent on a socioeconomic basis of how we used to see doctors and lawyers. The new blue collar middle class will be a combo of freelance or low paid work with UBI to help level them up, while those who an perform the more technical or skilled work will live the equivalent of upper middle income lifestyles that a doctor or lawyer would have in the 60s and 70s. 

So IOW, an ever increasing gulf in the income equality gap. 

While I'm not opposed to the concept, I'm not at all convinced that UBI is the savior here.  No amount of UBI will change the equation of inequality between those high skilled who put in the effort and the rest who get left behind.  Because as the gap gets bigger and bigger, everyone will forget the "B" stands for basic and will instead want UBI to give them a cushy lifestyle right up there with those that do have that lifestyle because they are working their ass off for it.  

I'm fine with UBI if it replaces all current forms of the social safety net.  If nothing, the pandemic exposed some significant weaknesses and flaws in our current social safety net structure.  So a UBI would be nice to prevent people wondering if they are going to be able to feed their children on any given day and be able to get medical care when needed, whether it be SSDD or in times of crisis.  

The other major flaw in UBI I see is: where is the $$ going to come from to pay all these people?  Yes, the overall economy might be as or more productive with a more automated workforce - but I'm not convinced this is going to offset the significant loss in tax base from those who will no longer be earning a productive income.  I think it will necessitate a complete overhaul and a major rethink into how we think about taxes and revenue.  It's not like we're going to be able to tax the robot's salaries.

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20 hours ago, Mike G said:

Does better pay make employees work harder?

Or does better pay allow you to just hire the more productive/efficient worker?

 

I absolutely think it's both.  If you are paid well and didn't get it by having to join a union and threatening a strike every year to get it - then yes I think you will work harder in appreciation for being valued and taken care of.  And then of course better salaries will attract better people in the first place.  

For instance, I'm currently very well paid.  But it's a union shop and we have to pull teeth just to get tiny concessions from the company.  So it pisses everyone off and the majority of folks punch their time clock and do the min possible and go home.  OTOH, as the new guy - I'm in the unique position of knowing the company execs and HR quite well having worked with them on other projects, and I truly believe they would do the right thing even without the union pressure having seen them work with non-union contracts.  But because the union constantly makes unreasonable demands - they push back hard and don't give an inch because the union will abuse the fuk out of it.  They inherited the union when they won the contract from a competitor and the union assumes that ALL companies are out to fuck them.  So they act accordingly.  The whole dynamic pisses me off.  But I digress......

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50 minutes ago, Burning Man said:

So IOW, an ever increasing gulf in the income equality gap. 

While I'm not opposed to the concept, I'm not at all convinced that UBI is the savior here.  No amount of UBI will change the equation of inequality between those high skilled who put in the effort and the rest who get left behind.  Because as the gap gets bigger and bigger, everyone will forget the "B" stands for basic and will instead want UBI to give them a cushy lifestyle right up there with those that do have that lifestyle because they are working their ass off for it.  

I'm fine with UBI if it replaces all current forms of the social safety net.  If nothing, the pandemic exposed some significant weaknesses and flaws in our current social safety net structure.  So a UBI would be nice to prevent people wondering if they are going to be able to feed their children on any given day and be able to get medical care when needed, whether it be SSDD or in times of crisis.  

The other major flaw in UBI I see is: where is the $$ going to come from to pay all these people?  Yes, the overall economy might be as or more productive with a more automated workforce - but I'm not convinced this is going to offset the significant loss in tax base from those who will no longer be earning a productive income.  I think it will necessitate a complete overhaul and a major rethink into how we think about taxes and revenue.  It's not like we're going to be able to tax the robot's salaries.

 I don't think it is ever increasing, I think it would result in returning to income and wealth distribution that looks more like the 60s and 70s. Paying for it is not the daunting task that it is generally perceived. Folks who have a stable base income would then have the ability to maximize their earning potential in ways they can not if they are working the equivalent of two full time min wage jobs just to get by. As folks earnings increase, then much of the UBI is recouped in taxes. The net cash flow is not going to bankrupt us, and the societal improvements will result in cost savings in other places. So aside from seeing it as the ethical thing to do, I think it is also the pragmatic thing to do from an economic standpoint. 

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1 hour ago, Burning Man said:

Anyone who doesn't agree with you and is in lockstep with you is immediately labeled a "reichista".

"Reichista" is officially approved PA jargon. I'm thinking of copywriting it. 

And as you well know, I do NOT use it on "anyone who doesn't agree." 

Tole ya a hunnert million times to not exaggerate. 

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1 hour ago, Burning Man said:

So IOW, an ever increasing gulf in the income equality gap. 

While I'm not opposed to the concept, I'm not at all convinced that UBI is the savior here.  No amount of UBI will change the equation of inequality between those high skilled who put in the effort and the rest who get left behind.  Because as the gap gets bigger and bigger, everyone will forget the "B" stands for basic and will instead want UBI to give them a cushy lifestyle right up there with those that do have that lifestyle because they are working their ass off for it.  

I'm fine with UBI if it replaces all current forms of the social safety net.  If nothing, the pandemic exposed some significant weaknesses and flaws in our current social safety net structure.  So a UBI would be nice to prevent people wondering if they are going to be able to feed their children on any given day and be able to get medical care when needed, whether it be SSDD or in times of crisis.  

The other major flaw in UBI I see is: where is the $$ going to come from to pay all these people?  Yes, the overall economy might be as or more productive with a more automated workforce - but I'm not convinced this is going to offset the significant loss in tax base from those who will no longer be earning a productive income.  I think it will necessitate a complete overhaul and a major rethink into how we think about taxes and revenue.  It's not like we're going to be able to tax the robot's salaries.

Please look at the results of the Canadian experiments in Manitoba and Ontario.  They may be counter-intuitive, but may get you out of the protestant culture mindset when approaching economics.  Economics is the management of scarcity. I can see in this economy keep ing a tight lid on the availability of Ferraris, but not the availability of food, clothing and shelter.

 

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1 hour ago, AJ Oliver said:

"Reichista" is officially approved PA jargon. I'm thinking of copywriting it. 

And as you well know, I do NOT use it on "anyone who doesn't agree." 

Tole ya a hunnert million times to not exaggerate. 

First of all, it is not officially approved anywhere. 

And 2nd, you've repeatedly called me a "reichista" because you disagreed with me - and I'm about as far from that as one gets without being a birkenstock wearing, Bernie-voting, vegan virtue signalling, commie libbyruhl.  And that was before you even bothered to figure out, much less asked what I actually believe in.  You've definitely gotten better about throwing that term around casually, but you still use it to label those that don't toe your dogmatic line.  Just saying.

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One of the really hard things to know when dealing with an employee is whether you are dealing with an internal or external locus of control in terms of their job, task, etc.  This is why as and employer you would love to know where they were at about age 10 or so where a lot of these attitudes come about.  Doers instead of sheep.  People who control their lives instead of blame.  I am sure Dan Price looks to this and may be very selective about it in terms of the tasks required when hiring.  This may go a long way to allowing him a higher salary in his situation. 

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59 minutes ago, Burning Man said:

First of all, it is not officially approved anywhere. 

Well, that was an attempt at humor, but nonetheless . . 

80% approval . . 

 

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