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Is this an American thing? I live in Eastern Europe and make decent buck here (close to 5000 EUR/mo after taxes in a country where you can cover all expenses under 1000 EUR/mo). I never had any trouble getting quality work in my country but a few times I got approached by companies from the US and oh boy, weeks of tiring recrutation process and the pay was ALWAYS worse than local. I feel like they do it on purpose maybe some people really fall for it after investing so much time? Once or twice an US SV startup asked if I’ll allow them to install some tracking software on my machine. Meanwhile no developer in my country even responds to offers if the salary is not given in the offer even before the interview kicks in. What’s wrong with the American market? Are there too many developers or what? (sorry for the typos, fat fingers and small phone)



> I live in Eastern Europe

Well, a number of people use Eastern Europe location as a filter for 'cheap labor'. And SV startups tend to have crap wages to begin with, but offer equity to compensate. I could imagine a few startups seeking to crimp further.

> Meanwhile no developer in my country even responds to offers if the salary is not given ... before the interview

Posting salaries is rare in the US. It's becoming the law in California, but this is hardly universal. There's an expectation that you'll negotiate, but they're really hoping you won't. And plenty of US engineers assume if you don't post a salary, it's because the budget for the position is low.


> Posting salaries is rare in the US. It's becoming the law in California, but this is hardly universal.

Citation needed on that. I really hope you’re right and I’m ignorant here, but I think you may be confusing it with the recent state law that makes it illegal for prospective employers to ask about salary history and theoretically requires them to give a salary range to an applicant when asked. I say “theoretically,” because there’s no way for anyone outside the company to verify that the salary range they give is in any way related to the budgeted range.


>Well, a number of people use Eastern Europe location as a filter for 'cheap labor'.

It's particularly hilarious when you realise that some eastern Europe places outsource to the US Midwest because it's cheaper....


>Well, a number of people use Eastern Europe location as a filter for 'cheap labor'.

Thanks for the idea. As East European I'll use this opportunity to improve my English speaking skills (on the phone).


I highly highly recommend Lab Rats by Dan Lyons. Dissects the forces behind the current state of the workforce in the US.

Very well written and exposes the brutality and destruction resulting from focusing on short term profit at any cost.


https://pando.com/2014/01/23/the-techtopus-how-silicon-valle...

>...wages were artificially lowered — an estimated $9 billion effectively stolen by the high-flying companies from their workers to pad company earnings — in the second half of the 2000s...

All these firms settled for a measly $334 million to make this problem go away, despite damning evidence.


This was a shameful crime that occurred at the highest levels in Silicon Valley. This illegal cartel should have been prosecuted under RICO laws with CEOs taken away in hand cuffs. Instead, the worker bees got peanuts. I received a $1300 settlement instead or the hundreds of thousands in lost wages that I was robbed of.


Thanks, added to my list. The topic looks kinda depressing though...


A lot of what people in power driven by greed do in the absence of long term vision or compassion, is depressing.

However, such actions are also detrimental to sustainable/thriving business. So smart people find more constructive and humane ways to be profitable. The book ends on a high note and carries the potential to help leaders correct course before self destruction.


> What’s wrong with the American market?

Well, here in SV, everyone kinda knows what other companies pay. You just didn't have friends in SV to tell you before the interview how much that company pays.

In general, there are top-tier companies, FAANG + Uber + Lyft + AirBnB, that pay X. Then there are lower-tier companies and startups that pay roughly X / 2. So, you're unlikely to get FAANG total comp at a no-name startup.


>> You just didn't have... >> So you're unlikely to get...

You have crafted a strange model. What are the upsides to such a system, to you, the employee?


What are the upsides to such a system, to you, the employee?

You get to learn first-hand why being a non-founder at a startup is almost always a bad deal in terms of compensation.


> Is this an American thing?

happened to me in Italy, about same script. salary expectations set from the start, two phone and two on site interviews with stellar feedback then they offered 2/3rd of current total comp.

like, thanks for waiting me three vacation days.


I apologize because I've worked for people who truly think eastern europe is nothing but goat farmers etc. Literally I think american corps in some aspect are trying to scrape talent from places (they think) are 3rd world countries.


Those people are overpaid and should not work in any corporate setting, since they are clearly missing basic highschool level education about how society works. Eastern Europe is/was very obviously the second world and is kind of defining what's the 3rd world (neither team East nor team West).


I don't know about the EU business culture, but in the US you are expected to negotiate. You really have to fight for every penny you want...


But we're talking about someone who already has a job, and the new company wants to entice away from that. What kind of negotiating tactic is it to start at 60% of current salary?


Well, the OP mentioned that the recruiter thought the candidate was lying which is why they low-balled. So that explains the logic at least. They're not stupid, but they don't trust candidates I guess. Which is a whole different thing.


> the recruiter thought the candidate was lying

> they don't trust candidates

...which is a great tell for what kind of relationship you would be starting if you did take the offer.


My understanding is that it IS common to lie, or else to redirect the conversation from what was made in the last position to what is desired for the new position. Why should it matter? You're being hired to fill a position that's worth x amount of compensation; the primary reason to ask for prior compensation seems to be to to get a "deal" (i.e., rob an employee of potential earnings).


There's no such thing as "worth X amount of compensation".

The way it's supposed to work is that you and your employer (who represents the capital) generate a return from your joint venture.

But the actual return is hard to predict. And there is no fair and obvious way to divvy up the return. So it comes down to negotiation power.

There also may not be any condition where you and the capital agree to join. The capital may have better options to generate a return and you may have better options to get a salary.


>And there is no fair and obvious way to divvy up the return

How about x% of average revenue per employee. Usally around 100k to 300k. So ARPE minus expenses = average salary.

Probably around 60k to 70k for most companies.


There is no shortage of ideas how to distribute profits, and no shortage of arguments which one is "fair" or which one is the best for whatever reason.

This particular scheme means you are paying janitors as much as people who went to school for a decade or more. Some people would not find that equitable and fair. Few academics would find that offer competitive.

And depriving the executives of large salaries also means you are increasing the incentive for corruption. If somebody has the power to squander a billion Dollar, you better pay her more than 100k.

And you forgot to include capital gains, or you included it with expenses. Whoever owns the equity will want some return, otherwise they will invest elsewhere (or not at all).


In my country there are very good statistics provided by the technical unions as to what compensation can be expected by region, technology domain, and seniority. I tend to quote those to set my salary and then argue up if need be.


Once you make lying common, not sure you can claim higher moral ground or even a flat stable ground to stand on ever.


Yeah, the recruiter told me the whole hiring team thought I was bullshitting about my salary.

It was a problematic company from the get go. I was cold called and the recruiter was very insistent. Their engineers were very unprofessional during the technical interview and complained A LOT about technical debt left by past co-workers during the interview.

Now, when I tell recruiters my minimum salary I refer recruiters to Glassdoor, just in case they doubt me.


I had that same experience interviewing with a startup in 1996, if you can believe it. They were looking at their "burn rate" by literally spending extra on airfare, but when I told them what I was earning, they said, "with that site?" No, doofuses, with my consulting; the site was just brochureware.

They didn't actually give me any answer until I asked them to give me one - then they said my attitude with the top management made it clear I wasn't a good candidate for the position.

Dodged that bullet.


IIRC it's becoming illegal to ask about current salary.

IMHO it should be irrelevant. The question is, what is the market rate for someone w/ your skills and experience?


> illegal

The inevitable result of that is the people making bank will be sure to tell you, and ones making low salaries will not. The employer will therefore still know if you're making above or below the usual salary.

Businesses don't like risk (just like employees don't) and hiring a new person poses a lot of risk. It's expensive, and the employee may not work out at all. The more risk there is in hiring someone, the lower the salary offer will be to compensate. Salaries are a proxy for one's value when hiring. Removing that piece of information increases risk, and hence will lower the salary offers.


> The employer will therefore still know if you're making above or below the usual salary.

Thats still way better than being forced to give an exact number. Now the employer has to kinda sorta guess. Instead of getting underpaid by 30%, you might only get underpaid by 20%.


The more an employer has to guess, the more risk there is in hiring someone. Risk is mitigated by lowering the price, i.e. you get a lower offer.

Also, if you wind up getting a salary that's more than you produce for the company, you'll be first in line to get laid off.


> The more an employer has to guess, the more risk there is in hiring someone.

An employees current salary is only barely correlated with a employees skill. They have a multitude of other, much much better factors that they can use to determine if someone is a "risk" or not.

> Also, if you wind up getting a salary that's more than you produce for the company

You are describing something that is close to impossible to measure, for the vast majority of situations. A company does not go around making exact measurements on programmers, and thinking to themselves "Is this person *really 18.2% more effective than the lower paid employee?".

Thats just not how it works. Instead, a person might be 3 times more effective, or half as effective, as the other employees, and salary will be almost entirely unrelated to how much they "produce", which can't really be measure very well anyway.

And this is without even getting into more complicated things, such as sunk costs, and the replacement costs. IE, you may be 10% less effective, but the costs to replace you are equal to 6 months of your salary, so in reality, it makes zero financial sense to do so.

And finally, you are ignoring the fact that an employee can just lie about their previous salary, and there is basically nothing the employer can do about this. I have never, in my life, had someone demand my tax returns, or call up a previous employer to verify my salary, and in many places this can even be illegal. I can just lie about my current salary, and easily get away with, as I have done so multiple times in the past, as well as has many other people that I know.


> I can just lie about my current salary, and easily get away with, as I have done so multiple times in the past, as well as has many other people that I know.

You're not fooling employers, they likely know you and your friends are lying, and discount the offer accordingly. Try bringing a paystub next time, your prospective employer will appreciate it. It's worked out well for me.

There have been some high profile cases of people who've worked for decades for a company, rose to the top echelon, and were discovered to have lied on their resume. They were out the door without their severance package.


> You're not fooling employers, they likely know you and your friends are lying, and discount the offer accordingly.

It's worked out pretty damn well for me and my friends, actually. I've gotten multiple 25% raises, each time by doing that. (Along with a healthy dose of job hopping)

> were discovered to have lied on their resume

I've never lied on my resume. Only about salaries, while talking to someone in negotiations.

That's just how the negotiation games goes. The employer makes blatant lies all the time in negotiations, also.

For the record, I've gone from a starting salary of 100k, when I just got out of college 6 years ago, to where I am today, which is 270k total comp, at a big 5 tech company.

I am pretty happy with those results. Especially so, because I've only ever considered myself to be an average engineer.

Or are you going to try and flatter me by saying that I could have been doing even better than going from 100k to 270k in 6 years? Perhaps. But I'd hardly say that I haven't done alright for myself.


> The employer makes blatant lies all the time in negotiations, also.

I've heard such justifications for submitting fraudulent college applications, cheating in college, doping in sports, etc.

I've done significantly better than my peers with salaries, without lying about it.

Remember that fable about Steve Jobs' dad painting the back of the fence that no one would ever see? My father once told me that honor is what separates men from animals. Honor is what you do when nobody is looking. How much is your honor worth to you? I'm no saint, but wanting my father to be proud of me is worth a lot to me, even though he's passed away.


> I've done significantly better than my peers with salaries, without lying about it.

Thats great. But the other strategy, of engaging in successful negotiation tactics, has also worked out quite well for me.

So it seems like the strategy can be successful.


> people making bank will be sure to tell you

Actually if you work a while and are lucky enough to have done well, you may want to pick a place to work for reasons other than it has the highest salary. In that case you may not want to advertise your salary history because it can scare away employers. It shouldn’t but it does.


>The employer will therefore still know if you're making above or below the usual salary.

Then again if it's illegal to find out, how will they check if your lying or not?


Because experience is a very weak signal and skills are hard to quantify and extremely hard to measure in the relative brevity of the interview process.

There are obviously problems with a reliance on salary as a signal of quality/value produced. But I don't understand the impulse to pretend that there isn't nontrivial signal in a previous salary.


There are now services like Equifax Workforce Solutions and The Work Number (and another I can't remember) that records this information for inquiry by future employers. If you have third-party payroll your salary info is almost certainly reported to such a bureau.


> Their engineers were very unprofessional during the technical interview and complained A LOT about technical debt left by past co-workers during the interview.

That was them just warning you: "Dude you won't hear it fom HR and I am not allowed to tell you directly but you most likely don't want this job."


The OP also mentioned the offer was below the average market price for somenone with a similar work experience, which is simply absurd if their goal is to entice you away from your current job.


They may not know the precise work experience nor the market price. They may also not be able to need or afford either.


Which means that they haven't done the bare minimum research into the position, they hired incompetent people, or they themselves are incompetent. None of these options really screams good place to work.


In Eastern Europe, you can also negotiate and make gains that way. The point is that you come to the interview with a known baseline of what they intend to offer to the candidate that meets their expectations. Thus, you can skip offers where it's so low that it's clearly not worth the trouble even trying to negotiate over. And if you do go to interview, you know the number below which you shouldn't go (and they know that you know).


You can negotiate for a reasonable increase but if an offer comes in at half of what you're making, negotiation is a waste of time for both parties.


Thats not always what's happening. I've turned down jobs that came in beneath the expected salary range I gave them and then tried to sound offended when I said it wasn't good enough, they weren't interested in negotiating.


My anedata for EU is that varies a lot between States.

In Germany, I had salary negotiation closer to what I was used to in the US (e.g.: two competing offers, etc).

In Denmark, very little room to maneuver. I had no luck negotiating salaries in big corps here (Final comp in DK mostly from salary). Every attempt I made to initiate a salary discussion/negotiation seemed to make the hiring managers uncomfortable as in “we don’t do this here”..


>In Denmark, very little room to maneuve

About the only thing I could see you getting in Denmark is a cost of living raise or maybe something to the whole department or team.

Some EU countries have a much stronger emphasis on sectoral bargaining. (Often there's a formal mechanism for everyone to work together to negotiate more pay)


>don't know about the EU business culture

It varies much more than the American one does.


Hi, can you kindly answer the following questions: How much experience do you have? What is your current technology stack? Is the salary which you stated based on an 8 hour workday 5 days a week schedule? How much late sitting do you do, if any? What is your typical work load, I mean do you solve complex problems all day long or do you just stitch libraries together? The salary which you stated looks a bit unbelievable. Thanks.


Not the GP, but I make 10k a month, 15 years experience, Python/Django stack, 4 days a week 8 hours a day, no staying late at all necessary, I usually stitch libraries together, although solving complex problems all day long would be better.

I hope that helps!


10k p/m in Greece?


Yes, I work for a SV company.


It is not just American companies but big companies treat different labor markets differently.

For example, I used to work for a big company in Denmark that has a sattelite office in Bucharest.

It is questionable to see that even the equipment the developers get there was subpar. The fulltimers there were treated as contractors (e.g.: no career incentives), expendable (high turnover).

The office just existed because when the company was smaller and needed more than now cheaper labor, they made it so that remote managers could be there as a proxy.


Are you from my former employer? :)

Joke aside, what you said above also applied in my case to my ex German employer in Eastern Europe. We got cheap machines with half the specs of the German counterparts but the management in The Mother Land expected the same productivity as the German colleagues.

Now, having migrated West to Austria(similar culture to Germany) tings don't get better an all accounts, even if you speak German. Sure, now you get nicer machines, and even if you manage to negotiate a salary close to local levels, your career development opportunities are close to zero as management will only propose the locals for promotions and trainings as those are the guys managers spend their lunches and cigarette breaks with, even if they're mildly incompetent. You'll be left as that guy who just needs to sit as his desk, do what he's told and be grateful to his masters he's been given a job as if you're coming form a country of goat hearders.

This horrible discriminatory culture in EU countries is not something the EU can't fix unfortunately and it's one of the reasons countries like Germany or the EU as a whole will never catch up to the US on innovation or salaries in tech.


Hehe, I’d sadly say no, chances are we don’t have the same employer but the general tech in Europe is still old IT / cost center.

I am not in a stage of life for pursuing promotions to give more anedata on that, but I can see that a lot of senior managers here in Denmark are not immigrants. I do see however that there is a wave of immigrant founders here. Let’s see if the economic environment will perdure long enough to see a greater change.


Can you tell us which Eastern European country do you live? What are your skills? Thanks!


Was curious myself, based in on his other comments, it's Poland.


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This site disagrees with your opinion http://airindex.eea.europa.eu


Does it? I see a large concentration of red dots over Poland, and some over Belgium-France border, all due to coal plants. Then there's UK.

    Poland takes second place with an overall score of
    5.5/10. The carbon dioxide emissions in poland are 
    7.63 tonnes per capita per year, which is higher than
    the winner Turkey. The concentrations of PM2.5 are 22
    µg/m3 which is almost half of Turkey’s concentrations.
    There are 69 deaths attributable to air pollution per
    100,000 capita per year. Poland consists of 30.8% 
    forest area and 38.10% protected terrestrial and 
    marine area. Each year, the citizens of Poland discard 
    304.9 kg of waste per capita.


Yes.

From your own quote: Poland, second place (over all)

World Atlas has them at #3 https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/cities-with-the-worst-ai...

So...not "dirtiest"


As a third party, I appreciate the links you've provided but you're being pedantic about Poland having to be strictly 'the dirtiest'.


Second after Turkey, which is not in the EU.


5k after taxes is nice! I’m in Western Europe and make only 3K after taxes but rent and utilities is half my take home. Suffice to say I’m juat getting by.


US salaries are on a whole new level when it comes to senior programmers. $200K+ base is normal, if you're good. $150/hr for consulting gigs is also normal if you're good.

So your $5K after taxes wouldn't even register on my radar.


This is relative.

5000€ is $5623. You can maintain a "normal" life standard around here for about $800 (renting a studio / two room flat in the city centre + all the expenses, no car but I never needed one - the subway takes me to the furthest parts of town in 25 minutes, walking to work is not unusual). So you're saving more or less 5000$ every month.

How much do you have to earn in SV to rent a place for your own next to your office and still save 5 grand a month? :)

Anyway I get your point and in general yeah, US salaries are of course on a whole new level and I won't even argue with that.

I'm not trying to say Warsaw is better for programmers than SV because it never was and never will be - yet we still managed, within last 5 years or so, managed to do something you somehow can't do - we trained HRs, agencies, recruiters etc. And they willingly act as we please. Because there's an incredibly high demand for programmers and no one has time for games like US companies play. And I still can't wrap my mind around this - if company Y or X is so desperately seeking for employees and pays them bazillions of dollars - why they even consider burning so much time on the process of hiring? Hiring is hard, I get that, but it's much easier if you disclose the salary. And in Poland right now hiring is impossible if the salary is unknown. And it's not even required by law (though it is supposed to be).


> And I still can't wrap my mind around this - if company Y or X is so desperately seeking for employees and pays them bazillions of dollars - why they even consider burning so much time on the process of hiring?

It's a leverage thing. Companies in high cost of living locations can just wait for someone else and they will. That doesn't work in a low cost of living locations, since their isn't much urgency from the perspective of the applicant.


First of all, who cares about base, what matters is total compensation. In Silicon Valley, I would say it takes about 5 years of experience, for good engineers, to rent a nice place close to work, if they want to. See actual data here: https://thestartupconference.com/2018/09/21/about-that-silic...

After 10 years of experience, you are looking into buying a house. Granted, the price of the house is exhorbitant compared to its size, but that's the market.


I'm a bit dubious of that site. A decent studio can be had for 2000-3000k even I'm SF. A good 2 bedroom apartment with 2 parking spaces and a patio close to Google that I was looking at was only 2.7k.

The salaries are also low in my opinion. At just under 4 years experience I'm making 225k yearly in TC, over 170k of that is salary.


Bargaining doesn't seem to work at scale (countries with bargaining habits don't do good economically) and it rapidly becomes a big waste of time for everybody.


As someone who always disliked visiting markets where bargaining is expected, this intrigues me. Can you recommend a book or documentary about this, or maybe explain a bit of the theorized causal connection?


Seconding nitrogen's request – I'm very interested in any pointers to further reading.

A potential cause for this effect might be that widespread bargaining reduces a market's efficiency, since prices are less transparent for buyers and sellers.


> How much do you have to earn in SV to rent a place for your own next to your office and still save 5 grand a month? :)

If you want a nice 1BR apartment ($3000) + a very generous budget for monthly expenses ($3000), you need to earn $11000 after tax to save 5 grand a month - i.e $132k a year.

A total compensation of $200k as a single person gets you that much after tax: https://smartasset.com/taxes/california-tax-calculator#BKf2k...

Take a look at these sources to see what top companies are paying software engineers in SV (spoiler: it's more than 200k, and you can add ~60% of each dollar above that to your savings): https://www.levels.fyi/ https://www.paysa.com/salaries


These are not normal base salaries even for senior programmers in the bay area. The 60th percentile for senior software engineers is around $180k per year in the Bay Area. Total compensation is commonly $200k or more, easily, but not base. Outside of the Bay Area, even in NY, Chicago, etc., base salaries are lower. In most places they're much lower--below $100k.


In large companies, there's another factor to consider, which is that if you're a few years into the company, the stock grants that you received a few years back and that are still vesting now are now possibly worth a lot more... your total yearly comp increases quite a bit if your company stock did well for the few years you've been with them.


Those are not nett salaries are they? So keep in mind in Europe it can be 5k times 2 times 12=120k.

(How to use asterisks here?)


A 50th percentile base salary for a senior engineer in the Bay Area is around $150k-$160k per year. Most companies offer a cash bonus (10%-15% of base); including this puts a typical cash compensation total for a 50th percentile senior engineer is between $165k and $184k per year. Most companies offer stock, but the grant and value of these varies wildly. Public companies' stock is actually worth something but you have your places like Google where RSU grants are a huge portion of salary and other places where it's closer to the cash bonus portion of salary.

This is all gross, pre-deduction salary; not salary net of taxes, deductions, etc.


Base salary is a ruse. Median total compensation for qualified experts in the bay is currently $450-750k at reputable firms. Everyone knows this. Any company offering less is simply not in the running and is staffed by absolute morons and won't make it. So sad to be them.


What's your bar for "qualified expert" in this context?


Their linkedin profile says so.


I can't say I've seen people talk about their net salary in Europe, but we do typically galk about monthly salary. (Even if they did say net salary, paying an effective income tax of 50% would be quite exceptional; I would need to make a bit over $300 000 for that in Sweden, which is insanely high.)


"How to use asterisks here?"

There is a Unicode small asterisk: ﹡

And some other variations: ∗ *


https://news.ycombinator.com/formatdoc

If you surround an asterisk by spaces it works fine: a * b * c * d


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$600/hr is the equivalent of about $1.2M/year salary. That's exceptionally rare. Unless you're being cheeky with "should be", I think you have beliefs that are misaligned with reality.


Hourly billing rate has to cover all the hours you can't bill for, PTO, health care, everything..


Most contractors I know don’t work 40hrs day, every week. Also if you look around at advice you’ll find that you shouldn’t quote an hourly rate, you should quote “for the job”. If you’re good and the work you’re doing is even mildly specialized you can get a job done quickly enough that the effective hourly rate is pretty absurd.


What counts as "independent expert in specialized field"? Because as an independent backend contractor (java/spring/scala/akka) that straddles the line between architectural consulting and staff augmentation (usually long-term contracts), I see real resistance to going above $200/hr since even in the bay area you can hire full teams from vendors at around that price point for man hours.


8*600 is $4800 per day. What kind of expert in what specialized field do you have to be to make that much? Can you give a specific example?


Seems below average for law firm partners [1], and there's a lot of them out there, so it doesn't surprise me at all that technical consultants with genuinely rare skills could command hourly rates like that.

[1] https://www.mlaglobal.com/en/knowledge-library/research/2018...


Has anybody ever seen such a thing in reality? I have seen quite a few consultants and nobody ever got even close.


Don't forget it's 200k a year whereas the EU salary is 5k per month - still way below, but as op said: once you factor in the cost of living, it starts to make more sense :)


The salary he mentioned is 5k/month _after_ taxes, so 60k/year. Which according to a Polish income tax calculator I found would be about 85k/year EUR before taxes. With current rates that's about 95k USD.

According to Numbeo living in SF is about 2 (groceries) to 5 (rent) times more expensive compared to Warsaw: https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_cities.jsp?cou...


Not to mention we get free health care and decent holidays with that.

A 7 weeks holiday allowance has more than a monetary allowance.


> Not to mention we get free health care

The (many) issues with US health care do not affect upper/middle class professionals.

From a "patient perspective", as long as you are employed as a software engineer in SV, health care is not a concern at all (insurance is covered by the employer). If anything, it is superior to anything I experienced in Europe.


I've experienced American healthcare and European healthcare. I'll take European any day of the week, over the Silicon valley version (and seriously if that's the best, god help the rest. I'm actually lucky I survived the US system.)

The issue in America is essentially that the system is paid by piecework. So the entire system optimises for the number of tests/procedures/operations etc. that can be performed. And that might not be so bad in and of itself, if 21st century medicine was reliable. But it's not, and the sad truth of the US system is that many of the (very expensive) procedures it performs have worst outcomes than leaving the patient alone.


That's interesting, because I had a different experience. What Europe are you talking about here?

In the Netherlands, a patient should not expect from a doctor to conduct any tests at all. I had no experience with the Dutch healthcare myself, but I've heard horrendous stories about it, for example how Irish expat went to a doctor with a problem of pain while swallowing, received nothing more than an advice "well, swallow less, then" (like in a bad joke about doctors), went home to Ireland a got diagnosed with a throat cancer there.


Except when you really need an efficient health insurrance system, like cancer level efficiency. At least it's what I learnd from following US politics these last 3 years on reddit.


I mean, I have cancer and my health insurance in the US is about as good as can be expected, which unfortunately means almost nothing because we're terrible at cancer we can't cut out of the body. If I didn't have this healthcare I'd probably be dead already and leaving a mountain of debt for my family. The costs to my insurance company are insane for treatment. I'm easily costing over 100k/mo for basic treatment.


Having a lot of money is really the sole area where US health care actually is the best in the world. Efficiency is somebody else’s problem.


Though the costs are invisible to you, our model raises prices and essentially gentrifies care, making it more difficult for those lower on the ladder to afford care (bringing along the associated public health issues) and robbing other priorities (like medical research) of cash.


This is because a sr programmer with experience and likely a family needs to think about saving for healthcare, retirement, education costs for children, housing costs that may also be more inefficient or expensive in the US than other nations


What does that have to do with anything he said?


That's SV/NYC numbers. Plenty of great programmers in other parts of the country don't make that.


Even in Silicon Valley there aren’t that many companies other than FAANG offering $200k base salary. $200k total compensation, including stock and bonuses, is a different matter.


[flagged]


why not a million


It's not based on how much they make, but about their abilities.


You literally described their abilities in terms of how much they make.


I described their abilities with the word great. And said they all make over a certain amount. They didn't always make this much. One used to make 140k working in gaming just 3 years ago. He was still great, just getting paid a fraction of what he could make. But that's gaming for you.


It is really difficult to have a meaningful discussion without any objective measurement of great. I am impressed that you are still trying.




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