1. No-Name Slob
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    No-Name Slob Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    American Programs

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by No-Name Slob, Apr 22, 2016.

    What are some social and economic programs you'd like to see implemented in the US, ideally speaking, if taxpayers' money and adding to national debt weren't factors? Pretend that America won the global lottery, and had, say an extra $50 billion to spend on new programs annually.

    Ex) public college education, mental healthcare provided to homeless, pay off national debt, green initiatives, etc.
     
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  2. SadStories
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    SadStories Member

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    Chocolate for everyone!!!!!
     
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  3. SethLoki
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    SethLoki Unemployed Autodidact Contributor

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    I'd buy into the chocolate thing if it were free. < Mixed my logic up there I think :meh: But I reckon it ought to come with free gym classes too.

    And keeping things totalitarian—what about: Conception licensing + conscription into parenting classes once conception has occurred ?
     
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  4. Justin Phillips
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    Justin Phillips Active Member

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    I think there needs to be life coaches -government funded- for individuals with extreme anxiety, depression, ADD/ADHD, and other serious mental illnesses that people don't take seriously. I'm talking about someone that comes into their home, helps them with stuff like paying bills, going to grocery store, things like that. There would obviously have to be a screening test, or go through the psychiatrist, but this is a serious problem with many people.
     
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  5. Cave Troll
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    Cave Troll Bite the bullet, do your own thing. Contributor

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    Give a bail out to the American populace, $1 million dollars to everyone 18 and up. And the rest to fixing the educational system. :p
     
  6. Justin Phillips
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    Justin Phillips Active Member

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    So they won several trillion dollars to pay off their debts plus an extra 50 billion? that' s some lottery! hehe jk I know what you meant.
     
  7. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Can we instead pretend that that some of the trillions of dollars spent on bailing out bankers was given back to the American people, or that the money currently being spent on uneccessary wars was redirected or that all the rich who have been avoiding paying virtually any taxes through tax loopholes were finally forced to pay their fair share? And if so, can we use the actual amount we'd be getting back, which would be at least half a trillion?
     
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  8. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    Complete prison reform.

    I've been watching this show, 60 Days in. It's about seven normal people who agree to live in Clarke County Jail for sixty days as a normal inmate. Only the sheriff, his assistant guy, the production crew, and their immediate family know that they're part of the program. The other participants don't even know about each other. Three guys were in one pod together and three girls were together in another, but only two of the girls realized the other was in the program.

    Anyway. The point of the program is to help the sheriff understand the problems in his prison. How the guards treat the inmates, how the inmates treat each other, what living inside the prison is like, how drugs are getting in, etc. And it's really depressing.

    They only have on hour of rec time a week. Otherwise, they just stay locked in their pods, which consist of a few rooms with four bunks each, tables for eating, a TV, and a place to buy commissary. One participant said that part of the reason these people act up is because they have nothing to occupy their time. Some see no reason to get up in the morning because there's nothing to do and others see no reason to behave, because it can't get much worse. Plus, the overcrowding is insane. In one pod, all of the beds are taken so new inmates are forced to sleep on the floor.

    Maybe I'm just overly sympathetic. But I don't think anyone should live like that.
     
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  9. zoupskim
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    zoupskim Contributing Member Contributor

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    Better funded and researched schools and teaching methods.
     
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  10. No-Name Slob
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    No-Name Slob Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    Prison reform is a must. That's actually why I asked this question. I have a piece in mind about what we could afford to implement if we ended the War on Drugs and stopped peddling money to private prisons and lobbyists.

    I've become unbelievably disillusioned about our legal system. Once you really dig in, you find that it's so unbelievably oppressive, it's disgusting.
     
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  11. No-Name Slob
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    No-Name Slob Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    I dunno about licensing for parents, but I don't think free parental classes would be a bad idea, at all.
     
  12. SethLoki
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    SethLoki Unemployed Autodidact Contributor

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    Maybe one would negate the need for the other—not thought to0 hard about it but sometimes in life you meet folk that you'd dearly wish weren't allowed to reproduce. :meh:
     
  13. No-Name Slob
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    No-Name Slob Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    That's true, but sheesh. I'd hate to live under a government with that kind of power.
     
  14. Raven484
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    Raven484 Contributing Member

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    I would give free classes to people in the workplace on investing. The 401k programs in this country are only there to steal half your money every 3-5 years. Better knowledge of how it works would force companies to get a good program.
    Right now there are annuity funds given by insurance companies that guarantee 5% every year. Even if the market goes down, you get 5%. You will never see these in your 401k plans because all they want is for you to take the risk so they can steal your savings from you.
    Right now in my company, I just put my money in a set 4% gain from PNC. I am the only one who does this because I hate to loose. Since 2004 when our new plan started, I am the only one who has made any money. Not much, but at least it wasn't stolen from me. Everyone is still trying to get back to zero, all are in the red.
    These 401k asses should all be thrown in jail.
     
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  15. No-Name Slob
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    No-Name Slob Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    It's so weird to me that we cram standardized tests down the throats of our youth at unprecedented rates, and yet none of them will know how to file their taxes when they graduate from high school.
     
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  16. Ben414
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    Ben414 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I agree it'd be great if people knew more about investing, but I disagree that those annuity funds are better than a smartly-invested 401(k) package. Total market or S&P 500 funds average 6% annually, if we're using a conservative estimate. Over the long-term and when combined with transferring to an increasingly higher makeup of bonds as you near retirement, they also pose little risk. That extra 2% in compound interest makes a huge difference over a period of 20, 30 years and is easily worth the additional minor amount of risk.

    However, too often people pay for active management of their portfolio--costing them 1+% annually--and they lack maximum diversification--creating too much risk without a benefit. Instead, people should make their investments in indexed funds--ETF's generally have the annual rates--in a total market fund or S&P 500 index, don't attempt to make any trades, and then transfer more and more of your funds into bonds as you near retirement.
     
  17. Ben414
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    Ben414 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I took a college class in personal finance. It covered smart investing, taxes, paying for a house v. an apartment, etc. Our final exam was filling out a 1040 tax form. Looking back, I can see it was really useful. Could not agree more that high schools should teach this stuff.
     
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  18. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    Free college education... and rat poison in meth. :rolleyes:
     

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