Dystopic Reward System

One of the most important features of our current socio-economic system is that rewards are a ‘bizzaro’ version of what they should be in a rational society.

A person’s income and stability of livelihood is inversely proportional to his/her utility to the upkeep, let alone progress, of society.

Don’t believe me? Here are some examples- add more if you want (in the comments).

Let us start with hedge fund managers, investment banksters and other assorted financial-type scumbags? Do they serve any purpose other than using other people’s money to bet on and manipulate the prices of everything from corn to crude oil? What about their role in creating fraudulent financial instruments? But we still reward them exceedingly well, don’t we?

What is the function of a CEO or anyone on the board of directors of a corporation? How often do they fulfill that obligation in anything other than the namesake? But aren’t they amongst the most well paid of “employees”? How often have you seen them destroy one company through their stupidity and then moving on to a better position at another? How do they get into upper management? Competence and ability or scam, accident of birth and luck?

Professionals are another category of scamsters, though far less richer than the ones we just talked about. Aren’t many professions from doctors, pharmacists to lawyers just monopolistic cartels with a significant percentage of incompetent, redundant and generally useless people? But aren’t those jobs great- with excellent stability, considerable latitude for malpractice, little scams and other perks?

Government bureaucrats are no different. Once again they have excellent pay, with considerable nepotism in recruitment and great job stability. Most don’t work hard, which is actually a good thing for everyone else. Private sector versions of these critters populate middle-management and HR. Once again they are often the last people to be fired and first to be rehired once their current company goes under.

Certain government jobs with utility such as law enforcement, regulatory agencies etc often end up doing stuff that is removed from their original purpose but nevertheless enjoy excellent compensation, something they share with education critters such as teachers and academics.

It is as if we deliberately choose to reward people based on how harmful, useless, incompetent and sociopathic they are. While I have written about the perverse incentives which partially fuel this problem, it is obvious that the real problem is even deeper. It has something to do with societies built on an ever-increasing amount of laws and regulations.As I have said before- a multitude of laws and rules are the best ally of sociopaths.

Comments?

  1. Deus
    June 30, 2011 at 5:31 pm

    Here’s one that will make me extremely unpopular: Professional Athletes

    We pay millions upon millions to people who hit inflatable balls with sticks or rackets, or bounce inflatable balls, or throw inflatable balls through hoops. Fucking useless.

    Another: Actors

    People who are good at lying and being filmed doing it. Then their importance goes to their brain and many think they are competent to comment on society, morality etc… because they have a bunch of groupie sycophants.

    • A Equals A
      July 1, 2011 at 7:37 am

      Athletes (and some highly paid actors, most are broke or underpaid) fully deserve their salaries. Their salaries are a result of the demand for their services (high) and the amount of people with their level of skill (low) thus, the ones that are able to make it to the NBA, NFL or other major sports league are the most skilled and talented of the entire pool of athletes in the country. There is currently a highly limited supply of NBA caliber basketball players for example, their pay is commiserate with public demand.

      The next question is then, why does the public choose to pay them so much? Because most cultures have a need for entertainment and sports is a form of entertainment. Like how many of you guys play video games like world or Warcraft. No different. People choose to spend their money on whatever they like. And no, it’s not always entirely rational what they spend it on.

      What people on this blog fail to understand (basic economics 101) is that ones pay is not a function of rational “utility”, its really just a function of supply and demand.

      • Michel
        July 1, 2011 at 9:12 am

        Cool story, bro.

  2. demirogue
    June 30, 2011 at 6:33 pm

    I agree completely. The best one you left out is of course the player who knocks up women and disappears. I recall a story of a man in Tennessee who was finally arrested for non-payment of child support for get this, 30 kids by almost as many women. If that isn’t a symptom of this skewed up system, I don’t know what is. Women rewards the men that ultimately will see to their own destruction. But they are only following the examples you write about so is it any wonder?

  3. June 30, 2011 at 8:04 pm

    y’know what they say, the shit flows downstream…..

  4. James Strictland
    June 30, 2011 at 9:55 pm

    The problem is I think there is a very limited number of useful jobs at all much less ones that pay decently.

    If every useless or downright bad for society job were to vanish, basically society would have to find some way to deal with what is essentially 70% unemployment.

    Everyone save a few cranks wants to be at least middle class (that is raise a family in comfort one one salary) and very few ways to get there in any system.

    And sure we could try a citizens wage, its an idea that I favor just as you do but its predicated on people being willing to take the fiat dollars and its not certain they will be willing to give you the same amounts of exchange or cooperate with any plans otherwise . . We also do not have enough resources to grant this lifestyle to everyone as yet anyway. All we can do is keep everyone on the dole poor as vs. destitute.

  5. July 1, 2011 at 3:14 am

    Compare a CEO to a feudal lord. A feudal lord had a specific revenue for which he had to provide armed men for war. He also had to take care of his fief, and although most of them did not, peasents’ revolutions were frequent. Not all feudal lords were rich, some of them were as rich as their subjects, some of them were men of the people.
    Now, what does a CEO do in comparison? Nothing. Does he have obligations? None.

  6. PT Barnum
    July 1, 2011 at 4:14 am

    The problem is I think there is a very limited number of useful jobs at all much less ones that pay decently.

    Glad to know we’ve reached Utopia, kip. All useful work has already been done.

    If every useless or downright bad for society job were to vanish, basically society would have to find some way to deal with what is essentially 70% unemployment.

    Kip, “I only see rich people”, is unaware how the lower 80% lives. It is true that in government jobs they work LESS effectively than they could, by a lot, and inflict harm to, but they aren’t NEGATIVE. And most people in the bottom 80% with private jobs do generate a positive net.

    Everyone save a few cranks wants to be at least middle class (that is raise a family in comfort one one salary) and very few ways to get there in any system.

    And yet that was the standard 60 years ago. So I guess the facts really aren’t important, are they?

    And sure we could try a citizens wage, its an idea that I favor just as you do but its predicated on people being willing to take the fiat dollars and its not certain they will be willing to give you the same amounts of exchange or cooperate with any plans otherwise . .

    They ate up the fiat dollars from the banker-bailout easily enough. And from the idiot wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and now Libya. Libya is going on, what, four months?

    We also do not have enough resources to grant this lifestyle to everyone as yet anyway. All we can do is keep everyone on the dole poor as vs. destitute.

    You mean after “we” have looted the country non-stop for 30 years straight there might be some economic problems? Well, I guess “we” have some explaining to do.

  7. James Strictland
    July 1, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    PT Barnum :

    The problem is I think there is a very limited number of useful jobs at all much less ones that pay decently.

    Glad to know we’ve reached Utopia, kip. All useful work has already been done.

    Thats not even close to what I said and you know it. The world can move on beautifully without most of the service sector (not all) government sector and a good chunk of the employees in any sector. While not there yet, automation is getting better and we are not far off from automatic factory makes good moved by robot car to store with self checkout . Few people are needed in such such circumstances.

    If every useless or downright bad for society job were to vanish, basically society would have to find some way to deal with what is essentially 70% unemployment.

    Kip, “I only see rich people”, is unaware how the lower 80% lives. It is true that in government jobs they work LESS effectively than they could, by a lot, and inflict harm to, but they aren’t NEGATIVE. And most people in the bottom 80% with private jobs do generate a positive net.

    My income puts me well into the bottom class and I know well how they live. While I agree that most of them men in the bottom generate a positive net, thats not universal across classes .Most of the wealthy forex are parasites as are a good chunk of every businesses employees . Its probably essential to hire them to keep society moving (no wealth distribution means no 1st world society) but they are not necessary.

    Everyone save a few cranks wants to be at least middle class (that is raise a family in comfort one one salary) and very few ways to get there in any system.

    And yet that was the standard 60 years ago. So I guess the facts really aren’t important, are they?

    Now is not then. We need less low skilled workers and can pay them less, the population has doubled and the people today, well they aren’t all that (though its getting better)

    Without a system of employment and cheap energy, our society cannot be sustained. We don’t have the energy for much longer or the social carrying capacity at all . And no minting fiat money won’t do it since the people that (in their minds) would be forced to take won’t for much longer and can’t be made to do it since they control the apparatus of democracy.

    And sure we could try a citizens wage, its an idea that I favor just as you do but its predicated on people being willing to take the fiat dollars and its not certain they will be willing to give you the same amounts of exchange or cooperate with any plans otherwise

    . .

    They ate up the fiat dollars from the banker-bailout easily enough. And from the idiot wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and now Libya. Libya is going on, what, four months?

    Its not the same thing really. This benefits the upper 10%and increases their power while keeping the military at bay. They’ll put up with that.

    However the need in the US is so great than an extra 2.5 trillion a year would just put the destitute an unemployed into the class of “poor” and prop the middle and working classes up.

    Given this would lower the status of the wealthy and force them to pay more, not gonna happen

    Do to the psychopathic greed of the globalists I can guarantee you that some kind of hard money system will be forced on people along with austerity. Short of a slaughter of the upper crust (which is as AD suggested) which has serious risks people are not willing to take no nation is going to make any real effort to fix this. As we have seen riots and protests are marginalized and voting is mostly useless

    We also do not have enough resources to grant this lifestyle to everyone as yet anyway. All we can do is keep everyone on the dole poor as vs. destitute.

    You mean after “we” have looted the country non-stop for 30 years straight there might be some economic problems? Well, I guess “we” have some explaining to do.

    The looting is part of it but we never had enough money since we were defending (and later occupying) the planet. Even after the ability to raise revenue was not there, the US society is tax phobic (see Hauser’s Law ) and before you mentioned the post war era, we had terrible poverty than. Thats why LBJ did what he did.
    Another big point, it seems that you can’t have immigration or diversity and social democracy. Its not sustainable. As we have no ability to undo either of those, its unlikely we can get any kind of wealth sharing. People “tribe up” and often as not work against their own interests.

    If we had put social democracy or the like in place in the 60’s and tightly controlled immigration, we could have managed our existent diversity issues in time but between the economic CONservatism and the social LIEberalism we screwed the pooch.

  8. randall
    July 6, 2011 at 4:21 am

    AD, laws and regulations come with an atomized society which needs laws to get justice as opposed to collective societies which use social cohesion to beat the system.

  9. DoesNotMatter
    July 14, 2011 at 1:51 pm

    “It has something to do with societies built on an ever-increasing amount of laws and regulations.As I have said before- a multitude of laws and rules are the best ally of sociopaths.”

    You are an exquisite joker and a fucking crybaby (actually you’re a fuckless crybaby), but once in a while you get something right. Oh well! you shoot so many darts. I guess one or two have got to land on target

  1. July 3, 2011 at 1:25 am
  2. November 27, 2011 at 10:26 am

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