Water-diamond paradox

This topic is locked from further discussion.

Avatar image for dave123321
#1 Posted by dave123321 (35357 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.
Avatar image for coolbeans90
#2 Posted by coolbeans90 (21305 posts) -

marginal something or other

Avatar image for konvikt_17
#3 Posted by konvikt_17 (22378 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.

Avatar image for Yusuke420
#4 Posted by Yusuke420 (2770 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. 

Avatar image for theone86
#5 Posted by theone86 (21331 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.

Avatar image for dave123321
#6 Posted by dave123321 (35357 posts) -
How you guys feel about athlete salaries compared to salaries for teachers and such?
Avatar image for konvikt_17
#7 Posted by konvikt_17 (22378 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.

Avatar image for airshocker
#8 Posted by airshocker (31700 posts) -

Dave is a maestro at trolling.

Avatar image for Allicrombie
#9 Posted by Allicrombie (26213 posts) -
really, dave?
Avatar image for PernicioEnigma
#10 Posted by PernicioEnigma (5895 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.
Avatar image for junglist101
#11 Posted by junglist101 (5517 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. 

Avatar image for tenaka2
#12 Posted by tenaka2 (17054 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.

Avatar image for Rhazakna
#13 Posted by Rhazakna (11022 posts) -
Marginal utility.... Biatches!
Avatar image for dave123321
#14 Posted by dave123321 (35357 posts) -
really, dave?Allicrombie
Really, alli? Don't like what you are becoming.
Avatar image for Diablo-B
#15 Posted by Diablo-B (4063 posts) -
Supply and demand. If there was a less water then diamonds then the prices would swap.
Avatar image for Renevent42
#16 Posted by Renevent42 (6654 posts) -
Do diamonds rain from the sky? No?
Avatar image for Inconsistancy
#17 Posted by Inconsistancy (8094 posts) -
Scarcity.
Avatar image for comp_atkins
#18 Posted by comp_atkins (34682 posts) -
because women like shiny things and men like women.
Avatar image for ferrari2001
#19 Posted by ferrari2001 (17763 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.
Avatar image for dave123321
#20 Posted by dave123321 (35357 posts) -
Marginal utility.... Biatches!Rhazakna
Can you elaborate?
Avatar image for rastotm
#21 Posted by rastotm (1380 posts) -

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

Avatar image for UCF_Knight
#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.
Avatar image for dave123321
#24 Posted by dave123321 (35357 posts) -
interesting thoughts so far
Avatar image for SolidTy
#25 Posted by SolidTy (49991 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.

Avatar image for SolidTy
#26 Posted by SolidTy (49991 posts) -

interesting thoughts so fardave123321

it's true, it's true.

So far, thoughts have been posted.

Interesting? not so much...

Avatar image for dave123321
#27 Posted by dave123321 (35357 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
Avatar image for SolidTy
#28 Posted by SolidTy (49991 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.

Avatar image for lo_Pine
#29 Posted by lo_Pine (4978 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?
Avatar image for SolidTy
#30 Posted by SolidTy (49991 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.

Avatar image for Inconsistancy
#31 Posted by Inconsistancy (8094 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...
Avatar image for SolidTy
#32 Posted by SolidTy (49991 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.

Avatar image for lo_Pine
#33 Posted by lo_Pine (4978 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.
Avatar image for SolidTy
#34 Posted by SolidTy (49991 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.

Avatar image for mmwmwmmwmwmm
#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.
Avatar image for dave123321
#36 Posted by dave123321 (35357 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
Avatar image for Riverwolf007
#37 Posted by Riverwolf007 (26023 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/

Avatar image for lo_Pine
#38 Posted by lo_Pine (4978 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.)
Avatar image for Wolfetan
#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.
Avatar image for konvikt_17
#40 Posted by konvikt_17 (22378 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.

Avatar image for konvikt_17
#41 Posted by konvikt_17 (22378 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.

Avatar image for mmwmwmmwmwmm
#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
Avatar image for GreySeal9
#43 Posted by GreySeal9 (28247 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?

Avatar image for dave123321
#44 Posted by dave123321 (35357 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.
Avatar image for Inconsistancy
#45 Posted by Inconsistancy (8094 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. 

Avatar image for lo_Pine
#46 Posted by lo_Pine (4978 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.
Avatar image for ShuLordLiuPei
#47 Posted by ShuLordLiuPei (9518 posts) -

Artificial scarcity, commodity fetishism, etc etc. 

Avatar image for Inconsistancy
#48 Posted by Inconsistancy (8094 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.
Avatar image for lamprey263
#49 Posted by lamprey263 (35030 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