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Why Innovate?

from Peter Radford

Every so often one of the numerous news feeds that fill my inbox contains a story that stops me short. In this era of Trump dominated news I have become numb to the corruption that he has brought in his wake and to the absurdity of his autocratic style with its contempt for the rule of law. Instead I focus on why it was that so many Americans were willing to elect someone so ill fitted to the job. The insecurities of the contemporary workplace offer a partial answer. So when I read Steve LeVine’s “The Future of Work” feed from Axios recently, not only did it stop me short, it gave additional insight into that electoral conundrum.

Not that I was reading anything particularly new. Sadly the there was no news. What struck me, however, was the brazen attitude and expression of the CEO’s quoted. LeVine didn’t give us his source, I assume it was some conference or other, so I am simply quoting his article verbatim before I comment: 

  1. patrick newman
    May 31, 2018 at 12:09 pm

    Democracy was not invented – it was the workers wresting power from the capitalists and their protectors – a partial achievement! The growth of new skilled workers will be less than the loss of relatively low and unskilled jobs. The question is where will the purchasing power for goods and services come from if an increasing number of citizens are being forced onto subsistence income?

  2. Prof Dr James Beckman, Germany
    May 31, 2018 at 1:14 pm

    Hi, Peter, here in Germany there is a tendency to keep even non-union workers. However, at retirement or an employee moving on, often the places are not filled. Given Germany’s safety net, this seems to work. There are immigrants & other foreigners to fill in open positions at lessor cost–they do so gladly. Over a beer managers indicate that with competition & tech changes this is the best they can do.

    This is not the American world of the 1970’s. Over 40+ years the canny worker has learned they must find a “lifetime” job, such as in police/fire work, or be prepared to retrain. The German word equivalent of “lifetime learning” is used constantly here, as you may know. Our ancestors often migrated to new lands including North America, Australia & NZ–learning as they moved.

  3. Craig
    May 31, 2018 at 4:40 pm

    Here’s are three economic innovations that will also have positive social, political and psychological benefits if we work together to acculturate a new zeitgeist of graciousness instead of mere profit, power, cynicism and harshness:

    A universal dividend of $1000/mo. for everyone 18 and older

    A 20% discount rebate policy at the point of sale throughout the entire economic process

    A 37.5-50% discount/rebate policy at the point of final retail sale for every product or service.

    Paradigm changes are always innovations that are conceptually oppositional to the current/old paradigm. Let us end monetary austerity with abundance and employment only with employment and monetary gifting.

    • lobdillj
      June 2, 2018 at 5:33 pm

      Craig, a lot of what I’m reading here is like a sales pitch. What I need is a simple example that takes a product from raw materials to sold finished product and gives the discounts, dividends and rebates at all stages of the process and the source of funds needed to commence the next cycle.
      Nobody has given that information in what I’ve read.

      • Craig
        June 2, 2018 at 6:00 pm

        lobdillj,

        The policies speak for themselves because they utilize the fact that the point of sale is a complete summing and stopping point and at final retail sale is also a terminal summing point for any and all inflation.

        As for the source of funds it obviously would have to be a governmental/monetary authority. It could actually be the FED. They are the monetary authority (wink, wink….because the too big to fail private banks are the real monetary authority)…but NOT the government (wink, wink because Finance and its monopolistic paradigm are the actual ruling authority).

        But all it would take is honest and informed people to expose this ruse and establish the government as the actual ruling authority and mandate that the FED fulfill the policies of the dividend and discount/rebate. Fiat money systems with temporal universe actual, rational and ethical controls must serve Man, Man must not serve tyrannical systems.

    • lobdillj
      June 3, 2018 at 3:41 pm

      Craig, Your list of what I’m missing contains some things I haven’t seen in this thread. 1. the “opt-in” feature, 2. the government necessity to assure that sales price increases reflect actual cost increases at every stage of production. 3. the penalty for violation. Is there a previously published document that specifies these 3 provisions?
      From 1966 through 1990 I worked for a defense contractor. DoD required every proposal to include a detailed labor (people & rates) and materials bid. Contract awards went to lowest qualified bidders, and contracts were CPFF and closely monitored for compliance. This process had government cost to assure compliance. Proposals were uncompensated bidder overhead costs.
      Your compliance assurance costs would create a new gov’t bureaucracy much larger than what I described. I assume this would be funded by direct gov’t spending with ex nihilo $? I’ve no problem with the cost and spending, but…

  4. lobdillj
    May 31, 2018 at 8:07 pm

    I am a proponent of MMT and the use of sectoral balance monitoring to adjust the unemployment to near zero by guaranteeing a minimum wage for public infrastructure projects with the government spending adjusted to provide jobs for all unemployed workers willing to work. But this article convinces me that if and when capitalists think the way described in this article some sort of control mechanism would be needed to avoid an ever-growing incentive to increase automation to a point where only publicly funded infrastructure projects employ the labor force. The labor force is the consumer base for 70% of GNP, and if automation is allowed to decimate privately employed labor GNP will decrease accordingly and the fraction of the labor force ejected from private enterprise will increase. Finally, I suppose, industry will be mostly automated, the labor force will all be working for the government at the guaranteed rate, and the GNP will have decreased to fit the ability of the labor force to pay.

    • Craig
      May 31, 2018 at 9:22 pm

      Yes, that is precisely what will happen unless we awaken to the new paradigm of Direct and Reciprocal Monetary Gifting and then acculturate ourselves intelligently to leisure/self chosen purposeful activity.

      Unless we think we can do away with profit, innovation and competition the labor participation rate will increasingly plummet. Technological innovation may decrease the need for human effort, but AI reduces the need for human PARTICIPATION. It is a far more disruptive economic force.

      • lobdillj
        June 1, 2018 at 4:23 pm

        For Craig: Thanks. I have downloaded a gob of material about Direct and Reciprocal Monetary Gifting and will study it closely.

      • June 2, 2018 at 10:12 am

        What a good idea, Jerry: I’ve done the same and found it very rewarding. The wikipdeia article compares different assumptions on the enforcement of giving, which is to miss the point of individuals giving to society: the biblical Acts 4:23-37 echoed in Marx’s “To each according to his need, from each according to his ability”. On reciprocity, the 1960’s emphasis on rights was balanced by duties in Good Pope John’s resounding phrase “The reciprocity of rights and duties”. But what was most delighted me was discovering a fine “red tory” essay on graceful giving being not so much to one’s neighbour as what I’ve been saying: operative through time.

        “Today, especially in Britain, all education is being subordinated to politics and economics. But a Catholic view should teach just the reverse: all politics and economics should be only for the sake of paideia. This means: make time equal to space or even primary.

        “Unqualified democracy has a kind of spatial bias — it supposes that we are all contracting individuals within a sort
        of eternalised agora. But this is to deny life – indeed it is part of the culture of death of which the Pope speaks – for life flows as a perpetual glissando through time. Life is not democratic, because it is both spontaneously creative and giving: with the arrived child, something new emerges. We must give to this child nurture, but from the outset the child reverses this hierarchy by revealing his unique creative power of response.
        No democratic contract can be involved here’

        “Pure democracy tends to deny the sanctity of life, the importance of the child, the procedure beyond mere political
        participation to old age and death. Its ‘normal’ person is rather the freely choosing and contracting autonomous 31 year old. But no human person is forever like this; it is rather only a moment in a coming to be and passing away.”

        [https://www.stthomas.edu/media/catholicstudies/center/ryan/conferences/2005-vatican/Milbank.pdf].

      • June 2, 2018 at 10:32 am

        Apologies for some typos in the above: this system seems cursed with an ability to conceal them! Here anyway is a bit looking to translate that theory into practical outcomes:

        “Things like the economy of fair-trade coffee may not sound dramatic or decisive and indeed they remain pathetically marginal and often compromised, but nevertheless the
        extension of such gift-exchange bit by bit is the sure way forward rather than revolution, government action or capitalistic solutions. Groups linking across the globe can ensure that something is given back to the earth and that genuine goods go into planetary circulation. We need once again to form systematic links between producer and consumer co-operatives and we need to see an emergence of cooperative
        banking (perhaps supervised by Church, Islamic and Jewish bodies) to regulate and adjudicate the interactions between many different modes of cooperative endeavour”.

      • June 2, 2018 at 11:40 am

        Bah! (to another typo)! Here’s a bit from the penultimate page:

        “We need then, in the Europe and the World of the future, a new conception of the economy as exchange of gifts in the sense of both talents and valued objects that blend material benefit with sacramental significance. We need also to encourage a new post-liberal participatory democracy that is enabled by the aristocracy of an education that seeks after the common good and absolute transcendent truth. Finally, we need to see that it is equally enabled by a monarchic principle which permits a unified power at the limit to intervene in the name of non-codifiable equity — the liberal alternative to this being the brutal exclusion of those, like the inmates of
        Guantanamo Bay, who escape the nets of codes and are therefore deemed to be subhuman.

        “Does all this sound fantastic? No, the fantastic is what we have: an economy that destroys life, babies, childhood, adventure, locality, beauty, the exotic, the erotic, people and the planet itself”.

        This was 2005, so Blair’s misconceived monarchic invasion of Iraq came in for profound criticism. It ends (p.13) with the ongoing Irish problem:

        “Most, including myself, have hitherto supposed that the religious conflicts in Ireland are an anachronistic echo, in a remote corner of Europe, of ancient European conflicts. But then why have they flared–up again so recently (the latter half of the 20th C) and persisted so long? Is not Ireland somewhat like the United States, where a ‘belated’ avoidance of secular ideologies [anachronistic religiosity] has turned imperceptibly into a foreshadowing of a time when those ideologies are exhausted? Here again, there is no progressive plot to history. … Government responses to this conflict now seem, in retrospect, like dummy-runs for a global suspension of civil liberties in the name of anti-terrorism”.

      • Craig
        June 2, 2018 at 10:17 pm

        “We need then, in the Europe and the World of the future, a new conception of the economy as exchange of gifts in the sense of both talents and valued objects that blend material benefit with sacramental significance.”

        You/he are spot on with that insight.

      • lobdillj
        June 2, 2018 at 11:57 pm

        I must be missing something.

        At https://wisdomicsblog.com/page/33/, on Jan 11 Steve Hummel writes:

        The 50% Discount/Rebate at Retail Sale.

        Simple three person model proves its power on the entire economic and monetary system

        Person 1 is the retail merchant who gives a 50% discount to his best competitive price to person 2 the consumer. Person 3 is the monetary authority that rebates the entire amount discounted to the consumer back to the retail merchant.

        Everyone’s purchasing power is immediately doubled, hence every business model within the entire economic/productive system can dramatically increase their volume of sales and hence their profits and yet there is not only no inflation, but almost unbelievably price deflation is painlessly and beneficially integrated into profit making systems.

        Finally and most importantly Finance/Banking’s monopolistic and dominating paradigm of Debt Only is ended by the new paradigm of Direct and Reciprocal Monetary Gifting. How and why? Because retail sale is both the appropriate and terminal end of the entire economic/productive process and also the summing point of all costs and so total prices for any item or service. Hence a fully rebated discount at that point still enables the merchant to be whole on their overheads and margins of profit, and the price reduction/increase in individual purchasing power adds a new systemic paradigm where only debt and only its related derivatives were allowed before.

        I don’t understand how this process prevents price inflation. Every person in the process understands what the monetary authority’s role is. The seller (Person 1) sets his selling price freely. The buyer (Person 2) is offered and buys the product at 50% of the seller’s selling price. Then Person 3, being somehow assured that the buyer actually paid 50% of the seller’s selling price, rebates to the seller the 50% discount involved in the sale.

        Apparently the buyer understands that the seller is going to be gifted the amount of the discount by Person 3, (the monetary sovereign), and the seller also knows this. So the selling price (before the discount is deducted) is really just twice what the buyer knows he is going to pay, and the seller knows that the sovereign is going to pay him another 100% of what the buyer pays. The 50% the sovereign pays the seller is created ex nihilo (out of nothing). Everybody knows this what happens.

        Where in this process is the condition that the selling price cannot be freely and arbitrarily increased to the next buyer? What am I missing?

      • Craig
        June 3, 2018 at 1:39 am

        You’re missing that part of the ability to opt into the policies is that you as do not arbitrarily increase your prices except for a legitimate additional cost. Nobody will be fooled if prices are magically increased by 30-40%….right before the policies are implemented. I mean to paraphrase what one of my favorite cartoon characters used to say, “Consumers might be dumb, but they’re not Stuuuupid” …and neither will the monetary authority be so, and any enterprise who tried to de-stabilize the beneficial system created in such a manner would immediately lose their discount privileges…..and rather promptly go out of business.

        You’re also not looking at the updated versions of the policies which includes a second 20% discount/rebate policy implemented at the point of sale of every business model to their next consuming business model on the route toward final retail sale where the 50% discount/rebate occurs. Of course if you accept the 20% discount and then don’t pass it on (that’s what the 20% discount is called, a 20% pass on discount) to the next business model….then you’re out of the the privilege to get rebated and you have to get all of your best competitive price….while your more ethical and intelligent competitor only needs to get 80% because of the rebate.

        Only a fool without ethics and a desire to only profit more instead of embracing the beatific chains of ethics would reject a system that freed all, enabled him/her to better profit and actually make the system flow freely….and once the system’s efficacy was apparent to all, those who did embrace a more decent ethic would have a very strong bully pulpit to “nudge”
        even the most die hard and deluded “free” market/libertarian type advocate toward honest participation in a system of rational, ethical and workable control.

      • Craig
        June 3, 2018 at 1:58 am

        The universal dividend and the two discount/rebate policies will finally make fiat money systems work for all agents and resolve the major problems of financialization, chronic inflation, disequilibrium, debt deflation and austerity. The fears and “realities of Life” seemingly inherent in the old paradigm will get swept away by the new paradigm and its zeitgeist. That’s the history of human progress and paradigm changes.

      • lobdillj
        June 3, 2018 at 3:48 pm

        The governmental cost of administering and enforcing compliance for this business requirement would be huge, but I assume it would create no government debt. Right?

      • Craig
        June 3, 2018 at 5:28 pm

        When you have a system that not only eliminates the possibility of inflation with the discount/rebate policies, but implements what everyone considers impossible…that is, integrating price deflation painlessly and beneficially into profit making systems….because its discount/rebate policies take effect at the very expression point for any and all price inflation…then as an advocate of MMT and fiat money systems you should be overjoyed because with these policies you’ve discovered not only an automatic monetary stabilizer but a paradigm changing monetary and economic inverting/transforming discovery. Inversion/transformation of a problematic duality/ratio is probably the primary signature of paradigm changes. Hence you no longer have to worry about inflation or have the “need” to try to curb it via taxation…and so you can directly fund any and all government.

        In other words it enables a truly directly distributive monetary system…..that serves man instead of requiring him to slavishly serve the system.

      • Craig
        June 3, 2018 at 11:10 pm

        Along with these normal strictures regarding policy opt in and participation business owners might want to ponder what the beneficial effects the doubling of everyone’s potential purchasing power and the lowering of price at the same time would mean to their increased profitability. Stable periods of copious amounts of available individual income being the ideal state of the economy…and then when you toss in price deflation with that you’d have an even better situation than the US found itself in after WW II when the anomaly of the middle class in capitalism occurred and lasted for about 25 years.

      • lobdillj
        June 4, 2018 at 3:03 am

        Is there someone here who can describe how the system works–how at each stage of production/consumption the two parties (seller and buyer) are motivated to perform their necessary exchanges of goods and money so that there can be no inflation and the gifts and discounts are assured???
        Craig doesn’t want to talk about anything but the assertion that it will solve all the problems with the present paradigm and that I ought to be happy about that.
        I want to walk though each transaction from mfg to retail sale and see what the motivators for the participants are at each step. I’ve asked for that but the answer hasn’t been given.

      • Craig
        June 4, 2018 at 5:48 am

        You’re adding complexity to the policies that is unnecessary. They are implemented exactly as described, and the reason why they will be opted into by virtually every enterprise is that it’s “an offer no enterprise can refuse” because:

        1) why wouldn’t they want to be able to sell their products for 20% less….and still get their best competitive price with the rebating of their discount back to them???
        2) if they mysteriously didn’t want to opt in and even one of their competitors did…how long do you think it would take for their competition to take a large chunk of their market share???
        3) why would any retail business not want 2-2.5 times as much free and available individual income out there to purchase their products/services?
        4) with the $1000/mo. dividend now able to purchase $2000-2500 of goods/services/mo. with the discount/rebate policies you’d have the immediate end to poverty because every two adult household would be making between $48 to $60k even if they didn’t do a lick, and much more of course if they were employed, even part time. So what would be the reason for both individuals and enterprise to pay transfer taxes for welfare, unemployment insurance etc.??? No reason at all because they are now totally redundant. Nice little savings
        there for every agent.
        5) Consider that MMTers and other heterodox economists, intelligent as they are, still can’t seem to think their way out of the wet paper bag of the current monetary paradigm of Debt Only, and hence can’t see that monetary gifting integrated into fiat monetary systems will result in the beneficially abundant and bounding effects of these policies….and also make it possible for the money system to be completely directly distributive (re-distributive taxation is waaay old paradigm) and hence income taxes for both the individual and enterprise would only need to be say 2-3% (just enough to be “pleasantly” reminded that the government is sovereign….and benevolent if you can force yourself to abide by the rules….while also benefiting from them as we see from these
        examples). Do these temporal universe policy effects sound like nice little incentives for businesses to opt into???

      • lobdillj
        June 4, 2018 at 12:33 pm

        Craig, here you go again. Nice sales pitch… without addressing the needed complexity I asked you to discuss. Maybe someone else here will have answers.

      • Craig
        June 4, 2018 at 5:24 pm

        I think honest people here can see that there is reality in what I have said and explained in the above posts. If you’re looking for an explanation of the specific business model to business model implementation of the policies that could be rather easily enumerated as well. For instance the miner reduces his ore by 20% to the transporting industry if the miner or producer don’t do that themselves and gets that amount rebated back to them, the transport industry reduces their charges to the producer and receives their rebate, the producer reduces it charges to the transporter/wholesaler and gets its rebate, the transporter/wholesaler reduces its charges to the retailer and receives their rebate and the retailer reduces their prices by 50% to the consumer…rebate. Capital goods producers “pass on” the 20% discount the same as any other model to the producing business model, rebate. All service business models would reduce their charges by 20% if their services were to a business and 50% to any individual, rebate.

        All of this takes place within the integrated underlying infrastructure of double entry bookkeeping which accounts for all such discounts and rebates by any and all business types and models including boutique or niche types. Any returned or damaged merchandise is accounted for in the returns and allowances and/or credit for damaged goods accounts. Complexity is delineated by the tool of accounting which is probably one of the top three or four human inventions.

        It doesn’t accomplish or prove anything to sit back and level a general charge. Ask a specific question…and a learned accountant would undoubtedly be able to give you a precise answer.

      • lobdillj
        June 4, 2018 at 6:14 pm

        If this is the way you are going to try to sell this, good luck yo you.

      • lobdillj
        June 4, 2018 at 6:19 pm

        I see Craig has suggested that I am not an honest person. Is there no etiquette requirement on this blog?

      • Craig
        June 4, 2018 at 7:18 pm

        I would suggest that invalidation via sustained generalization and refusal to confront/accept specific attempts to explain, while more covert, may be a more egregious example of out etiquette. Asking specific questions and accepting/further debating the answers to such would be more scientific and prove otherwise of course.

      • lobdillj
        June 4, 2018 at 8:20 pm

        More scientific? …refusal to confront/accept specific attempts to explain??? You have made no attempt to explain. And certainly nothing you have said is in any way scientific.

      • Craig
        June 4, 2018 at 8:31 pm

        Do you have a specific question?

      • lobdillj
        June 4, 2018 at 8:38 pm

        Read my previous messages.

      • Craig
        June 4, 2018 at 8:39 pm

        Double entry bookkeeping is not scientific?

      • Craig
        June 4, 2018 at 9:23 pm

        Looking directly at the moment to moment operations of the economy and

        1) deciphering the fact that the pricing, money and accounting systems are all digital in the sense that equal amounts of debits and credits sum to zero,

        2) that the point of retail sale is the macro-economic summing and terminating point for all costs including profit and

        3) simultaneously the terminal expression point for any and all price inflation for any item or service and then

        4) crafting digital policies around these insights that resolve chronic inflation, individual, commercial and macro-economic income scarcity and actually make price deflation a beneficial fact in profit making economies.

        I’m in agreement with 99% of what heterodox economists say are the problems, I’m simply saying that they are long on theory and woefully short on effective policies. Paradigms old or new are tricky to perceive and think outside of, but when one does actually look at and see them and also recognizes the above digital and economic significances….everything changes.

  5. June 1, 2018 at 12:32 am

    I think that, besides more technology, there are two things different today than in previous waves:

    * The book-keeping of power, by means of the banks, is more advanced. Banks define everyone’s standing individually, whereas before people’s position was determined in groups.

    * Capital is generalized, so that a computer company or a hedge fund can make cars if it wants to. Previously there was non-fungible know-how that workers used as a form of property.

    That, and Milton Friedman. It’s all his fault!

    • Prof Dr James Beckman, Germany
      June 1, 2018 at 7:16 am

      Hi, Pavlos, thanks for your observation that worker-skills are not as valuable as they used to be. My apartment house in Germany is being expanded, with trees torn out & earth talem away even as new wiring, fire safety, external coating are arriving on my exissting structure. Only the supervisor & heavy equipment operator make a traditional rate –and they are often laid off when work is low.
      Unionized workers do better, but they can pay 40% marginal taxes to help support their brethern. –I teach Master’s students in Engineering/Business. They are easily employed at what here are good wages. Yet they too must practice “life-time learning”. Old manual skills are only rewarded, in other words, is selected areas–perhaps 15% of the working population.

  6. Craig
    June 2, 2018 at 10:03 pm

    Steve Keen Insightful As Ever Still Fails To Recognize That The New Paradigm Would Best Resolve Trade Problem via the new paradigm instead of well intentioned but problematical domination via elitist and international institutions.

    In other words the true route to sane trade is making sure that the domestic economy of all nations is monetarily stable and abundant for all agents individual and commercial via the policies of a universal dividend and discount/rebate policies, and thus they can all industrialize/re-industrialize in the most efficient and productive way without having to worry about unemployment/a declining participation rate due to technological innovation and AI. Thus the consequent general national robustness will no longer tempt either export platforms or dominating reserve currencies.

  7. Helen Sakho
    June 4, 2018 at 2:50 am

    Please look up the latest unprecedented sale of traditional wholesaler stores used by builders, gardeners, normal traders, ordinary people trying to improve their homes (such as the DIY stores throughout the UK and elsewhere), the number of closures and subsequent job losses.
    And the astonishing price of sale!
    It is exactly the same price that “outdated” factories in the former “communistic” blocks were put on auction at.
    Truly astonishing!

    • Prof Dr James Beckman, Germany
      June 4, 2018 at 7:26 am

      Hi, Helen,

      WalMart picked up many of the people whose shops it had closed, so perhaps Amazon & friends will do the same for the home improvement/food wholesale competitors forced to their knees

  8. June 4, 2018 at 2:12 pm

    The idea that automation will result in the “end of work” is as bogus now as it was in the Luddite’s day. There are always and everywhere things to be done, and people who want to do them, but…they must be paid.
    Right now, we have a Western society that rewards monopoly and rent-seeking. We must end both, which only governments can do, not workers, except through the ballot box en masse. The, let the wage earner keep everything he/she earns. Inequality then, will only be based on merit, which will be far less than rent-seeking creates today. Productivity and true entrepreneurship will soar.

    • Craig
      June 4, 2018 at 7:59 pm

      You’re completely right that employment will probably always be necessary. The question is will it be sufficient to keep the economy flowing….which we already have the unfortunate answer to. You’re also correct that rentiering is an unequivocal vice, but the still deeper problem is the hypnotically unperceived current and new monetary and economic paradigms the former of which cause even erudite scholars to be trapped in palliative reforms and muddled orthodoxies…when real solutions are actually available with the latter.

  9. Prof Dr James Beckman, Germany
    June 5, 2018 at 10:35 am

    Peter, the most apparent example of differential pay increases comes to me from academic teaching. Over the decades we have gone from career profs with the phd students, to career profs, with probably more phd students per prof, more teaching by these students & finally part- time phd lecturers. I believe the greater supply of phd-candidates is part of the causation, while the greater supply of research funds allows for senior professor “grant coordinators” at the same time they write up their work & teach a bit. I’ve seen the gamut since my degree in the 1970’s. Here in Germany it is a bit more bifurcated, with the traditional unis using exalted senior profs contrasted to the Unis of Applied Science largely populated by profs who held regular jobs while taking some classes & writing their dissertations. The Germans distinguished between serious researchers & those more filled with societal work experience.
    The senior researchers earn 2-4 times what a non-publishing prof does & at least 8 times what a “freeway flyer” type of course-to-course, school-to-school, instructor does.
    That is true in California & in Germany, to my best knowledge,

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