Water-diamond paradox

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#1 Posted by dave123321 (34153 posts) -
Hello OTconomists. So from time to time I keep hearing about this thing called the water-dimond paradox. The basic issue is that water is very useful to our lives yet doesn't cost much compared to diamonds even though diamonds are not really all that useful relative to diamonds. So why is that? That is where you come in, OTconomists. In this thread, debate issues of why diamonds are so expensive and why water is so cheap. Can this be related to salaries of teachers compared to salaries of athletes? Should we pay teachers what they are worth? Cut down salaries for athletes? Do we place a higher value on athletes then we do on our education ? What can we do to change that or is that something that we will have to accept? Is this is simply an issue of scarcity, or is there something more involved? So lets have a good civil debate OT.
#2 Posted by coolbeans90 (21305 posts) -

marginal something or other

#3 Posted by konvikt_17 (22254 posts) -

Because money

diamonds are harder to come by, so people will spend exhorbitant amounts of money for a pretty rock.

cant really sell water for high amounts of money.


or something like that.

#4 Posted by Yusuke420 (2793 posts) -

While water is also a limited resource, there is much more of it then there are diamonds in the world. Also water is needed not just for drinking, but to raise crops and feed herd animals, so making it an huge expense would cause huge famines. 

#5 Posted by theone86 (20555 posts) -

Part of it is availability of water by region.  While water is extremely scarce globally, it's fairly readily available in most regions of developed countries.  Lake Michigan, for example, has a huge supply and adjacent regions benefit from that.  Two, we have an amazing water delivery system in most parts of the U.S. that negates a lot of geographical barriers.  Just about anywhere that people live they can receive fresh water because of that infrastructure.  The problem is that maintaining the infrastructure costs money, and we've been extremely reluctant to shell out that money.  So while we're benefitting from cheap water due to a ready supply, we're subsequently refusing to maintain the system that provides said supply.  In short, either by shelling out tax dollars to maintain infrastructure or by having to deal with shortages and thus higher prices, the price of water will eventually go up.

Also, when we're talking about regions that have low rainfall or access to water that's also coming to a tipping point.  What has basically happened is that some of these regions have developed in a manner where they can sustainbly rely on local water sources, but occupy a space right below the tipping point where their consumption becomes unsustainable.  These regions keep creeping closer to that point, either through contamination of local water sources, drought conditions lowering the availability of water while consumption remains constant, or overuse of water resources on the part of farmers who are responding to market forces. In some cases the price of water actually does go up, usually through the cost of having to ship water in when local sources dry up.  Sometimes the cost goes up because of contamination lowering availability when it should isntead be bourne by the individuals contaminating it.  However, contamination is hard to prove after the fact and the burden of proof lies on those akingt he accusation.  Sometimes the cost doesn't actually go up at all because the source being used transcends property lines.  Every individual has the right to extract water on his own property and therefore isn't exactly paying for it, but since they are depleting a common resource they will eventually run into conditions where the cost goes up.

When we're talking about water in developed countries a lot of times there are a lot of hidden costs.  The fact is that we've grown accustomed to a certain availability of potable water, and when that availability drops we're reticent to bear any increased costs or suffer any reduction in usage.  Until people really start to understand the problem of water availability that's going to continue to be true.

#6 Posted by dave123321 (34153 posts) -
How you guys feel about athlete salaries compared to salaries for teachers and such?
#7 Posted by konvikt_17 (22254 posts) -

I think teachers should get paid more. especially for the crap they have to put up with, on a daily basis.

i know they chose to become teachers, but there are still things that not even they can be prepared for. some people are just dicks.

#8 Posted by airshocker (29934 posts) -

Dave is a maestro at trolling.

#9 Posted by Allicrombie (25240 posts) -
really, dave?
#10 Posted by PernicioEnigma (5390 posts) -
It's a combination of diamonds being rare and them being in demand, making them a scarce resource. Water may be essential to life but in most parts of the Earth it's easy to come by.
#11 Posted by junglist101 (5462 posts) -

How you guys feel about athlete salaries compared to salaries for teachers and such?dave123321
Any professional athlete could probably learn to teach a class but teachers can't learn to be professional athletes.  The market dictates both of their salaries and I'm fine with that.

Being a pro athlete is a talent that brings in millions in revenue and they are compensated accordingly. 

#12 Posted by tenaka2 (17040 posts) -

Hello OTconomists. So from time to time I keep hearing about this thing called the water-dimond paradox. The basic issue is that water is very useful to our lives yet doesn't cost much compared to diamonds even though diamonds are not really all that useful relative to diamonds. So why is that? That is where you come in, OTconomists. In this thread, debate issues of why diamonds are so expensive and why water is so cheap. Can this be related to salaries of teachers compared to salaries of athletes? Should we pay teachers what they are worth? Cut down salaries for athletes? Do we place a higher value on athletes then we do on our education ? What can we do to change that or is that something that we will have to accept? Is this is simply an issue of scarcity, or is there something more involved? So lets have a good civil debate OT. dave123321

You have obviously never been to Arrakis.

#13 Posted by Rhazakna (11022 posts) -
Marginal utility.... Biatches!
#14 Posted by dave123321 (34153 posts) -
really, dave?Allicrombie
Really, alli? Don't like what you are becoming.
#15 Posted by Diablo-B (4049 posts) -
Supply and demand. If there was a less water then diamonds then the prices would swap.
#16 Posted by Renevent42 (5326 posts) -
Do diamonds rain from the sky? No?
#17 Posted by Inconsistancy (8091 posts) -
Scarcity.
#18 Posted by comp_atkins (31476 posts) -
because women like shiny things and men like women.
#19 Posted by ferrari2001 (17008 posts) -
Water requires a person to approach a source with a bucket scoop it up and carry it to whoever needs it. Diamonds on the other hand require extensive digging equipment in remote locations, like Africa, a large team to dig mines and the harvest the diamonds. They then have to be cleaned and shaped for whatever they will be going in and then shipped to a store. Not to mention diamonds are much more rare than water is.
#20 Posted by dave123321 (34153 posts) -
Marginal utility.... Biatches!Rhazakna
Can you elaborate?
#21 Posted by rastotm (1370 posts) -

Prestige is a valuable tool that tends to open quite some doors. And jewelry, in general, is a indication of prestige.

#23 Posted by UCF_Knight (6863 posts) -
Do diamonds rain from the sky? No? Renevent42
This. And no, teachers should not be paid more. Athletes generate lots of revenue, therefore they should be paid a lot. If millions of people tuned in to watch Ms. Appletree teach third grade math, then she could be paid millions too.
#24 Posted by dave123321 (34153 posts) -
interesting thoughts so far
#25 Posted by SolidTy (43887 posts) -

How you guys feel about athlete salaries compared to salaries for teachers and such?dave123321

I think the haves and have nots need to unite to destory the such.

#26 Posted by SolidTy (43887 posts) -

interesting thoughts so fardave123321

it's true, it's true.

So far, thoughts have been posted.

Interesting? not so much...

#27 Posted by dave123321 (34153 posts) -

[QUOTE="dave123321"]interesting thoughts so farSolidTy

it's true, it's true.

So far, thoughts have been posted.

Interesting? not so much...

We need to make people feel valued
#28 Posted by SolidTy (43887 posts) -

Hello OTconomists....have a good civil debate OT. dave123321

I think teachers should get some diamonds and water, athletes should get less diamonds and water. They also can keep their pay.

The rest of the diamonds go to me.

#29 Posted by lo_Pine (5048 posts) -

Because money

diamonds are harder to come by, so people will spend exhorbitant amounts of money for a pretty rock.

cant really sell water for high amounts of money.


or something like that.

konvikt_17
If diamonds are so hard to come by how come no matter what city or town you go to, almost anywhere in the world, you will find a diamond shop?
#30 Posted by SolidTy (43887 posts) -

[QUOTE="Rhazakna"]Marginal utility.... Biatches!dave123321
Can you elaborate?

I can partially elaborate :

I think he is calling you or maybe all of us female dogs for our participation, but he thankfully misspelled the word.

It's also possible he misspelled "Batches", perhaps because he has cookies in the oven and he was overbaking them. A fire alarm set off while he was typing,  so he ran off to pull the batch of cookies out of the oven, which is why he posted like that, cutting off his first point regarding margarine butter.

Are you hungry? I'm hungry. BRB.

#31 Posted by Inconsistancy (8091 posts) -
[QUOTE="Renevent42"]Do diamonds rain from the sky? No? UCF_Knight

This. And no, teachers should not be paid more. Athletes generate lots of revenue, therefore they should be paid a lot.

Teachers actually teach quite a lot of revenue's worth of pupils...
#32 Posted by SolidTy (43887 posts) -

[QUOTE="konvikt_17"]

Because money

diamonds are harder to come by, so people will spend exhorbitant amounts of money for a pretty rock.

cant really sell water for high amounts of money.


or something like that.

lo_Pine

If diamonds are so hard to come by how come no matter what city or town you go to, almost anywhere in the world, you will find a diamond shop?

hehehehe....that's what he said. 

I'm speaking about Mahatma Gandhi if I recall, touching on that issue in the Speech At The Round Table Conference...my memory fails me, I may be thinking of someone else.

#33 Posted by lo_Pine (5048 posts) -

[QUOTE="lo_Pine"][QUOTE="konvikt_17"]

Because money

diamonds are harder to come by, so people will spend exhorbitant amounts of money for a pretty rock.

cant really sell water for high amounts of money.


or something like that.

SolidTy

If diamonds are so hard to come by how come no matter what city or town you go to, almost anywhere in the world, you will find a diamond shop?

hehehehe....that's what he said. 

I'm speaking about Mahatma Gandhi if I recall, touching on that issue in the Speech At The Round Table Conference...my memory fails me, I may be thinking of someone else.

It's true though. Diamonds aren't really that rare.
#34 Posted by SolidTy (43887 posts) -

[QUOTE="SolidTy"]

[QUOTE="lo_Pine"] If diamonds are so hard to come by how come no matter what city or town you go to, almost anywhere in the world, you will find a diamond shop?lo_Pine

hehehehe....that's what he said. 

I'm speaking about Mahatma Gandhi if I recall, touching on that issue in the Speech At The Round Table Conference...my memory fails me, I may be thinking of someone else.

It's true though. Diamonds aren't really that rare.

I didn't deny.

#35 Posted by mmwmwmmwmwmm (620 posts) -
[QUOTE="dave123321"]Hello OTconomists. So from time to time I keep hearing about this thing called the water-dimond paradox. The basic issue is that water is very useful to our lives yet doesn't cost much compared to diamonds even though diamonds are not really all that useful relative to diamonds. So why is that? That is where you come in, OTconomists. In this thread, debate issues of why diamonds are so expensive and why water is so cheap. Can this be related to salaries of teachers compared to salaries of athletes? Should we pay teachers what they are worth? Cut down salaries for athletes? Do we place a higher value on athletes then we do on our education ? What can we do to change that or is that something that we will have to accept? Is this is simply an issue of scarcity, or is there something more involved? So lets have a good civil debate OT.

"Contradictions do not exist. Whenever you find yourself facing an apparent contradiction, check your premises. You will find that one of them is wrong." You are mistakenly assuming that the value of something is solely determined by its usefulness, without regard to its scarcity.
#36 Posted by dave123321 (34153 posts) -
[QUOTE="mmwmwmmwmwmm"][QUOTE="dave123321"]Hello OTconomists. So from time to time I keep hearing about this thing called the water-dimond paradox. The basic issue is that water is very useful to our lives yet doesn't cost much compared to diamonds even though diamonds are not really all that useful relative to diamonds. So why is that? That is where you come in, OTconomists. In this thread, debate issues of why diamonds are so expensive and why water is so cheap. Can this be related to salaries of teachers compared to salaries of athletes? Should we pay teachers what they are worth? Cut down salaries for athletes? Do we place a higher value on athletes then we do on our education ? What can we do to change that or is that something that we will have to accept? Is this is simply an issue of scarcity, or is there something more involved? So lets have a good civil debate OT.

"Contradictions do not exist. Whenever you find yourself facing an apparent contradiction, check your premises. You will find that one of them is wrong." You are mistakenly assuming that the value of something is solely determined by its usefulness, without regard to its scarcity.

We are trying to fund this out
#37 Posted by Riverwolf007 (23865 posts) -

diamonds are valuable because of the perception of scarcity.

i say perception because diamonds are really not that scarce.

there are trillions of carats of diamonds sitting in vaults around the world and if they were released the value would crash.

the reality is that at best  diamonds are a semi-precious gem.

In 1870, however, huge diamond mines were discovered near the Orange River, in South Africa, where diamonds were soon being scooped out by the ton. Suddenly, the market was deluged with diamonds. The British financiers who had organized the South African mines quickly realized that their investment was endangered; diamonds had little intrinsic valueand their price depended almost entirely on their scarcity.

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1982/02/have-you-ever-tried-to-sell-a-diamond/304575/

#38 Posted by lo_Pine (5048 posts) -

diamonds are valuable because of the perception of scarcity.

i say perception because diamonds are really not that scarce.

there are trillions of carats of diamonds sitting in vaults around the world and if they were released the value would crash.

the reality is that at best  diamonds are a semi-precious gem.

In 1870, however, huge diamond mines were discovered near the Orange River, in South Africa, where diamonds were soon being scooped out by the ton. Suddenly, the market was deluged with diamonds. The British financiers who had organized the South African mines quickly realized that their investment was endangered; diamonds had little intrinsic valueand their price depended almost entirely on their scarcity.

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/1982/02/have-you-ever-tried-to-sell-a-diamond/304575/

Riverwolf007
This. (Emeralds are cooler anyway.)
#39 Posted by Wolfetan (7522 posts) -

I think teachers should get paid more. especially for the crap they have to put up with, on a daily basis.

i know they chose to become teachers, but there are still things that not even they can be prepared for. some people are just dicks.

konvikt_17
:lol: Most teachers are AWFUL.
#40 Posted by konvikt_17 (22254 posts) -

[QUOTE="konvikt_17"]

Because money

diamonds are harder to come by, so people will spend exhorbitant amounts of money for a pretty rock.

cant really sell water for high amounts of money.


or something like that.

lo_Pine

If diamonds are so hard to come by how come no matter what city or town you go to, almost anywhere in the world, you will find a diamond shop?

im sure real diamonds are alot more harder to actually find than the shiny fake diamonds they use.

though i was mostly going off of, they are more rare in the environment than water.

#41 Posted by konvikt_17 (22254 posts) -

[QUOTE="konvikt_17"]

I think teachers should get paid more. especially for the crap they have to put up with, on a daily basis.

i know they chose to become teachers, but there are still things that not even they can be prepared for. some people are just dicks.

Wolfetan

:lol: Most teachers are AWFUL.

Many years of putting up with pre-teens/ teens bullshit probly has something to do with it.

#42 Posted by mmwmwmmwmwmm (620 posts) -
[QUOTE="konvikt_17"]

I think teachers should get paid more. especially for the crap they have to put up with, on a daily basis.

i know they chose to become teachers, but there are still things that not even they can be prepared for. some people are just dicks.

Wolfetan
:lol: Most teachers are AWFUL.

And the average teacher is much more easily replaced than a talented athlete
#43 Posted by GreySeal9 (24518 posts) -

[QUOTE="konvikt_17"]

I think teachers should get paid more. especially for the crap they have to put up with, on a daily basis.

i know they chose to become teachers, but there are still things that not even they can be prepared for. some people are just dicks.

Wolfetan

:lol: Most teachers are AWFUL.

And you know this how?

#44 Posted by dave123321 (34153 posts) -
Guys guys guys, the water diamond paradox is supposed to be about the general apparent paradox in value and usefulness. So don't get caught up in actually talking about the ins and outs of diamonds and water. The issue is not about water or diamonds, you can substitute other things for them.
#45 Posted by Inconsistancy (8091 posts) -

[QUOTE="Wolfetan"][QUOTE="konvikt_17"]

I think teachers should get paid more. especially for the crap they have to put up with, on a daily basis.

i know they chose to become teachers, but there are still things that not even they can be prepared for. some people are just dicks.

konvikt_17

:lol: Most teachers are AWFUL.

Many years of putting up with pre-teens/ teens **** probly has something to do with it.

Most of the worst that I had in HS were just stubborn idiots, blaming their students for their lack of drive to learn, and refusing to accept any form of criticism. No person responsibility. Handing out needless busywork for class/homework, and "teaching" by just having the students read from the book and do the 5 questions after the chapter, essentially babysitting.

The most civil classes I had were always the ones that the teacher had focused on making the subject interesting, rather than trying to control the class with yelling and an exceedingly pedantic adherence to the rules. If they can't be bothered to try and make it interesting, then they shouldn't be teaching.

We should work harder on educating our teachers; too few of them are even qualified to teach, or comfortable with, a subject. 

#46 Posted by lo_Pine (5048 posts) -

[QUOTE="lo_Pine"][QUOTE="konvikt_17"]

Because money

diamonds are harder to come by, so people will spend exhorbitant amounts of money for a pretty rock.

cant really sell water for high amounts of money.


or something like that.

konvikt_17

If diamonds are so hard to come by how come no matter what city or town you go to, almost anywhere in the world, you will find a diamond shop?

im sure real diamonds are alot more harder to actually find than the shiny fake diamonds they use.

though i was mostly going off of, they are more rare in the environment than water.

Water is rarer than dirt, but they still sell dirt it at Home Depot.
#47 Posted by ShuLordLiuPei (9506 posts) -

Artificial scarcity, commodity fetishism, etc etc. 

#48 Posted by Inconsistancy (8091 posts) -
Guys guys guys, the water diamond paradox is supposed to be about the general apparent paradox in value and usefulness. So don't get caught up in actually talking about the ins and outs of diamonds and water. The issue is not about water or diamonds, you can substitute other things for them. dave123321
Well, the "ins and outs" of diamonds and water are basically the same as anything else; demand / scaricty = value.
#49 Posted by lamprey263 (24246 posts) -
the diamond supply is quite high actually, it's just controlled by a relative few who keep the price inflated, sure it has real world technological applications and some argue water could get expensive depending on where you live in the world, in the near future, some countries get their water from glacier melt that's going to be gone in coming years, probably won't compare to the market price of diamonds but it'll be a more important issue over time