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URL:  http://boards.fool.com/pk227-actually-i-agree-with-you-phil-about-law-27690153.aspx

Subject:  Re: Wharton Biz School looks at Medicare Date:  5/19/2009  1:48 PM
Author:  HoracePuckey Number:  14989 of 20640

PK227: Actually I agree with you, Phil, about law enforcement. However, I have a problem with people being rewarded for just showing up for work and pushing paper. I do believe that if people were rewarded to doing a better job than other people, more would be accomplished. I do not consider identifying and reporting people or companies commiting fraud under medicare Law enforcement. I consider it part of their job. If they simply process paper which makes no sense....you lose and so do I ...

This conversation reminds me of some friends I had back in my more radical days. They observed that most jobs consist primarily in pushing paper. Moving paper from your in box to your out box. No other contribution. They would have insurance at the top of the list of that sort of thing, but most government, and, indeed, most "jobs" if you examine them closely spend an inordinate amount of "work" time moving paper. They felt that most real goods and services are provided by a very small fraction of the “work” force. The others are the work farce. Seen in this light, there is room for some of the drones we have. They aren’t likely to produce any valuable work in any case, so shrug them off.

The question then becomes, “How can the goods and services be equitably distributed to the population?” We do it now by pay, sometimes (They claimed most of the time) for useless jobs that actually contribute nothing.

My friends were advocates of a negative income tax. Provide everyone with enough for subsistence and eliminate the charade of putting in 40 hours at a boring, useless job. Let those who want more work to get ahead. At the time, it made sense. Would eliminate welfare fraud, would get rid of rush hour freeway jams, and everyone would be happy. There would be time to spend on real self improvement for those who want. Time to tend your garden if you want, time for creative activities not pursued due to lack of time and money. IOW, utopia.

Interesting argument, I thought.

Horace
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