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MiddleAgesMan
03-05-2010, 05:24 PM
...and the Reps alternate universe:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/05/opinion/05krugman.html

ChaseKenyon
03-05-2010, 06:48 PM
well written article ,
thanks for posting MAM

Tom Montgomery
03-05-2010, 06:53 PM
When I write to Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) I receive a prompt reply.

When I write to Senator Jim Bunning (R-KY) I do not receive a prompt reply.

Bunning is out of touch... in more ways than one.

Soundbounder
03-06-2010, 08:37 AM
I finally got around to reading this today.
Thanks.

Mrleft8
03-06-2010, 08:59 AM
Curious that none of the knee jerk "conservatives" have commented.....

paladin
03-06-2010, 04:50 PM
Sorta like a 2-3 years old throwing a temper tantrum in a grocery store because they can't have all the cookies/candy that they want.....2-3 weeks ago there was a lady in the store, and a couple of her rugrats were running down the aisles unatended, grabbing candy/cookies, opening them and eating some and putting the remains back on the shelf.
I asked the lady at check out why didn't someone say something because a lot of the employees saw it...she said then the people would stop shopping there and prices were adjusted to compensate for it.....Oh Sure...! Raise my prices to pay for someones little bastards to rip the store off. The next time I saw it I told the mother that the kids were.......into the candy...SHE grabbed what they had opened and put it back on the shelf...almost every time I go there.....

Tom Galyen
03-06-2010, 05:26 PM
I do not consider my self a "knee jerk conservative" at all, but may I put my two cents in, which is all I have left after the left takes what it wants from my wallet.

No one, Senator Bunning included, would say that when a person is down that they should not be helped. Contrary to Paul Krugman and the rest of the Knee Jerk Liberals he was not turning down the aid period, he was just holding it up until the left answered one embarrassing question which they did not want to answer. "Where was the money coming from to pay for this program?" They refused to answer so he did what he did.

I live in the liberally economically ruined state of Illinois. What put us in the toilet? The leftist liberal thinking that you just cough up money after money for every program without a thought of where that money was going to come from. Just a few months ago our Democratic governor, who is basically a nice guy, was campaigning for the primary election and assured the students at the U of I here in Champaign where I live that their tuition grants monies etc, et al, would not be cut. It is a terrible thing to deny education to anyone. A nice thought. However, we don't have a Senator Bunning to ask that embarrassing question of how are we going to pay for this. Governor Quinn won the Democratic primary for Governor, and the U of I is now putting workers etc on furlough and cutting programs etc. Why, you ask? BECAUSE THE STATE CANNOT GIVE THEM THE MONEY THE STATE HAS PROMISED TO GIVE THEM BECAUSE THERE IS NO MONEY!!!! The State of Illinois is in arrears over 450 MILLION dollars to the U of I, and that is just a small part of the problem. Had we had a Senate full of Senator Bunnings for the last 20 or so years asking that embarrassing question maybe the entire country would not be in the economic state that it is in now.

What happens to those future people who will need it when the money does just run out? What happens in a few months when this will come up again? Sooner of later the piper must be paid. Senator Bunning was asking who going to do it. The Democrats are celebrating the victory of not answering the question. Some Victory.

oznabrag
03-06-2010, 05:39 PM
I do not consider my self a "knee jerk conservative" at all, but may I put my two cents in, which is all I have left after the left takes what it wants from my wallet.

...

Mr. Galyen (Galyen: He who has a yen for a gal :D) You are very conservative, in my estimation, but I don't think of you as 'kneejerk'.

I don't know a thing about Illinois politics, or Illinois State funding, but you really should know that, on the National scene, Fiscal Conservatives have been on an extended vacation. The country's economy is in the tank because we let the other conservatives at the helm for 8 years.

I hope all is well with you and yours, sir, and that the coming Spring will reveal its promise to you!

Tom Galyen
03-07-2010, 12:59 AM
Thank you for the kind words, I'm recovering faster than I thought I would from a cracked rib that I got about two weeks ago from a fall on the ice at work. I went for a brisk 3 mile walk today and it didn't bother me too much.

As far as the fiscal conservatives go I agree with you. I claim both parties are to blame for the financial mess we are in. The Democrats for dipping into the public coffers for money whenever they see someone who needs money without thinking of where it is coming from, and the Republicans for not stopping them and also for not coming up with ways to finance the money that the Democrats saw a need for. The Democrats are correct in wanting to help people, they are irresponsible for giving away money like a drunken sailor. (As a non drinking ex-Navyman trust me I know how a drunken sailor gives away his money - like there was no tomorrow and that he will be able to replace it.)

The Liberals have been in charge of the purse strings in Illinois for way too long and they did just that. Most of the money has disappeared into the black hole of social irresponsibility known as Chicago. Mayor Daley and his Democratic machine have literally raped the state for decades, raping the school funds the pension funds for state workers and educators until they are empty. Now we are broke.

President Obama and most of the people of his administration are alumni of that College of Irresponsible Political Fiscal Education. They are doing in Washington what they have done in Illinois for a long time. It didn't work here and I assure you it won't work there. This is why I didn't vote for him. He is a north of I-80 Chicago Democrat trained by the machine up there, so is Rahm Emanuel and most of the rest of his inner circle.

I believe his heart is in the right place, just not his brain. He is highly educated and intelligent person, but trained and educated in politics and economics by the wrong people and its too late to do anything now except to hope he only has one term to do his damage.

Lastly thanks for the comment about having a "yen for the gals." Even though I've never married I do have a yen for the ladies. As far as being a conservative, I try to walk down the middle of the road. I'll admit I stray sometimes to the right side of it, but try never to leave it. People who are too far to the right or left of the road to see it each think I'm on the other side of it, but generally I'm not. :)

Peace, to you and to all us Bilge Rats. May the most you ever dream of be the least you ever receive.

Soundbounder
03-07-2010, 06:10 AM
Sorta like a 2-3 years old throwing a temper tantrum in a grocery store because they can't have all the cookies/candy that they want.....2-3 weeks ago there was a lady in the store, and a couple of her rugrats were running down the aisles unatended, grabbing candy/cookies, opening them and eating some and putting the remains back on the shelf.
I asked the lady at check out why didn't someone say something because a lot of the employees saw it...she said then the people would stop shopping there and prices were adjusted to compensate for it.....Oh Sure...! Raise my prices to pay for someones little bastards to rip the store off. The next time I saw it I told the mother that the kids were.......into the candy...SHE grabbed what they had opened and put it back on the shelf...almost every time I go there.....
Sorry, but you lost me on this one.
I am having trouble seeing the similarities between the millions who have lost their jobs, and a kid stealing candy.

I think a big flaw with many on the right is that they can't differentiate between someone who lost their job, and a stereotypical welfare queen. To conservatives, they are one and the same.
I have worked for 20+ years since high school. I lost my job last year. I am really sick of creepy talk radio types describing me as some freeloader who has had a free ride my whole life!

Soundbounder
03-07-2010, 06:18 AM
Senator Bunning was asking who going to do it.
Jim Bunning voted in favor of the Bridge To Nowhere, the Iraq War,and the Bush tax cuts without ever questioning how they would be paid for.
But when money is allocated for unemployed Americans, he suddenly becomes outraged about gov't spending.
It is obvious where his priorities are, and it has nothing to do with a balanced budget.

Sharpie21
03-07-2010, 07:42 AM
Bush tax cuts triggered a wave of economic growth that resulted in an increase of tax money flowing into the Treasury. That's why the tax cuts were made. Fed tax receipts went from $1.8 Trillion to $2.5 Trillion, by my calculation that is a nearly a 40% increase over six years. So it is plain to see that the Bush tax cuts more than paid for themselves.
The problem in Washington is not a revenue problem, it is a spending problem. Reagan pointed this out decades ago and it is more true today than ever.

Soundbounder
03-07-2010, 08:16 AM
Bush tax cuts triggered a wave of economic growth that resulted in an increase of tax money flowing into the Treasury. That's why the tax cuts were made. Fed tax receipts went from $1.8 Trillion to $2.5 Trillion, by my calculation that is a nearly a 40% increase over six years. So it is plain to see that the Bush tax cuts more than paid for themselves.
The problem in Washington is not a revenue problem, it is a spending problem. Reagan pointed this out decades ago and it is more true today than ever.All you are doing is cherry picking a high and low for revenues in the past decade and crediting it to Bush. And you conveniently ignore that revenues dropped right back down to $2.1 Trillion.

http://www.taxpolicycenter.org/taxfacts/displayafact.cfm?Docid=200

Let me guess; Bush is responsible for the increases in revenues, and Clinton and Carter are responsible for the decreases.

Also, Republicans controlled the White House and both houses of Congress for years. They increased spending. "Deficits don't matter" was the rallying cry. They are in no position to be lecturing us now about fiscal prudence.

oznabrag
03-07-2010, 08:46 AM
Sorry, but you lost me on this one.
I am having trouble seeing the similarities between the millions who have lost their jobs, and a kid stealing candy.

I think a big flaw with many on the right is that they can't differentiate between someone who lost their job, and a stereotypical welfare queen. To conservatives, they are one and the same.
I have worked for 20+ years since high school. I lost my job last year. I am really sick of creepy talk radio types describing me as some freeloader who has had a free ride my whole life!

Yeah, I think he did lose you.

I can't speak for Chuck, but when I read that post of his, it was clear that the similarity he was illustrating was between spoiled 3-year-olds and Bunning/the Republicans.

paladin
03-07-2010, 08:50 AM
you got it....

Sharpie21
03-07-2010, 09:00 AM
It is not cherry picking, I used those numbers to disprove the claim made that the Bush tax cuts were not paid for, when in fact they were the catalyst for profound economic expansion, and the revenue growth that came along with it. I made my point (using the same source material you offered).
The subsequent decline in tax revenue had nothing at all to do with tax rates, as you already know. :D
No defense of profligate spending was offered in my post, quite the contrary. I did then and do now, oppose the spending that is going on, not just at the Federal level, but also at the State level. I live in NY, we are broke, and worse, deep in a fiscal hole. Too little revenue? Ha! Politicians of every stripe use your money, and your grandchildrens money to buy favors for the electorate, and thus win re-election. Alexis DeToqueville warned of this very scenario back in the nineteenth century (Democracy in America).
There were many fiscal conservatives who opposed the liberal spending that went on during the Bush years, myself among them. If others want to "get the religion" of fiscal conservatism at this time, and for whatever selfish reason, I welcome the support for fiscal sanity, even if it is brief. It is never too late to put down the bottle and come to one's senses.

oznabrag
03-07-2010, 09:06 AM
It is not cherry picking, I used those numbers to disprove the claim made that the Bush tax cuts were not paid for, when in fact they were the catalyst for profound economic expansion, and the revenue growth that came along with it. ...

The profound economic expansion happened, primarily, in the wallets of the already rich. It happened at the expense of those who were already poor or middle class.

You can spin this turd at 40K RPM, and it still stinks.

Sharpie21
03-07-2010, 09:35 AM
If you take the time to review US Census Bureau data, (Wiki has a nice summary under the heading American Middle Class) you will learn the truth about the shrinking middle class. Over the past two decades, the number of households in the lowest income range decreased 3.5%, the middle income range decreased by 3.9%, while the only income range to increase, by 7+%, was the uppermost. People are actually slipping into prosperity.
Get your mind wrapped around that bit of truth, and quit spinning turds. :eek:

cookie
03-07-2010, 09:46 AM
I think it was in this lecture that Krugman states that mainly the upper 1% benefited.....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5kwA-CwFK5A

Sharpie21
03-07-2010, 09:53 AM
Krugman is one of the dumbest smart guys out there.

elf
03-07-2010, 10:02 AM
Ah. Ad hominen.

Unfortunately, Paul is extremely bright.

cookie
03-07-2010, 10:09 AM
For the ones who want to know more about income distribution, listen to tis piece, from 4.00 min til about 12.00min.

http://video.google.nl/videoplay?docid=-782159081457451178&ei=dbyTS_GEJsqj-Aalma3iAg&q=krugman+google&hl=nl&view=3#

Sharpie21
03-07-2010, 10:13 AM
Elf, my comment did acknowledge his brain power. Implicit is my belief that his conclusions all too often don't make a lick of sense. To be more specific would just take way too much time. I would rather be boat building, wouldn't you. :D P.S. like your photos.

Sharpie21
03-07-2010, 04:05 PM
Cookie, thanks for the link to Krugman, what a howler. Talk about cherry-picking your info to stretch a point so far that it almost makes sense. I heard all I needed to hear when Krugman began to praise George Soros and ridicule Grover Norquist.
I think I will leave the Bilge and stick to boat-building topics and discussions. There's less toxicity there. :D

elf
03-07-2010, 04:15 PM
I listened to Paul's talk there and didn't hear him praise Soros. Where did he do that?

cookie
03-08-2010, 05:08 AM
Cookie, thanks for the link to Krugman, what a howler. Talk about cherry-picking your info to stretch a point so far that it almost makes sense. I heard all I needed to hear when Krugman began to praise George Soros and ridicule Grover Norquist.
I think I will leave the Bilge and stick to boat-building topics and discussions. There's less toxicity there. :D
Leaving the scene because we don't accept your ridiculous arguments eh

Soundbounder
03-08-2010, 05:31 AM
Yeah, I think he did lose you.

I can't speak for Chuck, but when I read that post of his, it was clear that the similarity he was illustrating was between spoiled 3-year-olds and Bunning/the Republicans.Thank You!!!!

;)

Soundbounder
03-08-2010, 05:33 AM
you got it....I need to stop posting before I have my coffee.
My apologies!!!!

MiddleAgesMan
03-08-2010, 06:44 AM
Just an aside--There is a profile of Krugman in the March 1 issue of The New Yorker magazine.

As for the mini-tempest coming out of Sharpie's opposition opinions I'll say this: anyone who thinks of Grover Norquist as a hero of any political or economic movement doesn't know much about Grover Norquist. That would be the generous view. A less generous view would have it that Norquist Neocons really don't care about our nation and its people. All they care about is securing their positions in that top 1/10th of 1 percentile of the world's most wealthy.

Here's my favorite Grover Norquist piece: http://www.avantnews.com/news/402210-grover-norquist-drowns-in-bathtub

Recent blog about where Norquist's head is at these days: http://thunderpigblog.blogspot.com/2010/03/grover-norquist-friend-of-jihad.html

This guy thought Norquist would be jailed along with Jack Abramoff but apparently he borrowed some teflon from the Teflon Don: http://www.americanpolitics.com/111197GOPCrimes.html

John Smith
03-08-2010, 07:33 AM
I do not consider my self a "knee jerk conservative" at all, but may I put my two cents in, which is all I have left after the left takes what it wants from my wallet.

No one, Senator Bunning included, would say that when a person is down that they should not be helped. Contrary to Paul Krugman and the rest of the Knee Jerk Liberals he was not turning down the aid period, he was just holding it up until the left answered one embarrassing question which they did not want to answer. "Where was the money coming from to pay for this program?" They refused to answer so he did what he did.

I live in the liberally economically ruined state of Illinois. What put us in the toilet? The leftist liberal thinking that you just cough up money after money for every program without a thought of where that money was going to come from. Just a few months ago our Democratic governor, who is basically a nice guy, was campaigning for the primary election and assured the students at the U of I here in Champaign where I live that their tuition grants monies etc, et al, would not be cut. It is a terrible thing to deny education to anyone. A nice thought. However, we don't have a Senator Bunning to ask that embarrassing question of how are we going to pay for this. Governor Quinn won the Democratic primary for Governor, and the U of I is now putting workers etc on furlough and cutting programs etc. Why, you ask? BECAUSE THE STATE CANNOT GIVE THEM THE MONEY THE STATE HAS PROMISED TO GIVE THEM BECAUSE THERE IS NO MONEY!!!! The State of Illinois is in arrears over 450 MILLION dollars to the U of I, and that is just a small part of the problem. Had we had a Senate full of Senator Bunnings for the last 20 or so years asking that embarrassing question maybe the entire country would not be in the economic state that it is in now.

What happens to those future people who will need it when the money does just run out? What happens in a few months when this will come up again? Sooner of later the piper must be paid. Senator Bunning was asking who going to do it. The Democrats are celebrating the victory of not answering the question. Some Victory.
Actually, Kyl said exactly that.

John Smith
03-08-2010, 07:37 AM
Bush tax cuts triggered a wave of economic growth that resulted in an increase of tax money flowing into the Treasury. That's why the tax cuts were made. Fed tax receipts went from $1.8 Trillion to $2.5 Trillion, by my calculation that is a nearly a 40% increase over six years. So it is plain to see that the Bush tax cuts more than paid for themselves.
The problem in Washington is not a revenue problem, it is a spending problem. Reagan pointed this out decades ago and it is more true today than ever.
Horsefeathers. I'm tired of being told that cutting taxes brings more money into the government.

If that were true, let's eliminate all taxes and the government would be swimming in money.

If you read the fine print, you'll find that the 1.8 trillion was after the tax cuts, growth brought it to 2.5 trillion, but receipts prior to the tax cuts were higher than either of these numbers.

This is like telling your kids to put less money into their savings account every month and they end up with more money in the end.

Find any chart that tracks our debt and deficit, and you'll see how quickly they went UP under Reagan and Bush. You'll also see a huge spike as Obama comes into the picture, but MOST of that comes from including in the budget those things Bush did not include in the budget, like the two wars.

oznabrag
03-08-2010, 09:57 AM
Actually, Kyl said exactly that.

Kyl?

I'm sorry, John! It looks as if you've made a typo while trying to spell 'Kyle', and I can think of no reference to such a person!

Help me out here, ol' son!

John of Phoenix
03-08-2010, 10:31 AM
That would be Senator Kyl (R-AZ).


But that’s not how Republicans see it. Here’s what Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona, the second-ranking Republican in the Senate, had to say when defending Mr. Bunning’s position (although not joining his blockade): unemployment relief “doesn’t create new jobs. In fact, if anything, continuing to pay people unemployment compensation is a disincentive for them to seek new work.”

In Mr. Kyl’s view, then, what we really need to worry about right now — with more than five unemployed workers for every job opening, and long-term unemployment at its highest level since the Great Depression — is whether we’re reducing the incentive of the unemployed to find jobs. To me, that’s a bizarre point of view — but then, I don’t live in Mr. Kyl’s universe.

oznabrag
03-08-2010, 10:51 AM
That would be Senator Kyl (R-AZ).

Thanks 'John of Phoenix'.

I gotta say that your new moniker is taking a little getting used to! :p

Sharpie21
03-08-2010, 01:03 PM
[QUOTE=John Smith;2516045]Horsefeathers. I'm tired of being told that cutting taxes brings more money into the government.

If you read the fine print, you'll find that the 1.8 trillion was after the tax cuts, growth brought it to 2.5 trillion, but receipts prior to the tax cuts were higher than either of these numbers.

Thanks for making my point John. Indeed, economic growth did follow the tax cuts. And yes, tax receipts were higher in 1999, but if you will just think back a ways, you will recall that we suffered a rather sharp economic implosion about then (2000, the tech bubble) which depressed the economy.
After the tax cuts, tax receipts grew well beyond prior levels. Not by co-incidence.
To adopt the view you are espousing, there would be no logical limit to tax levels, unless you are willing to admit that taxation does in fact have a direct impact on economic activity, and the subsequent growth of wealth.

High C
03-08-2010, 01:41 PM
Yes, indeed... the already-wealthy did experience an extraordinary growth of wealth, as a consequence of those tax cuts.

As for the rest of America.... not so much.

You need a new accountant. This middle class family saw its income taxes fall by nearly a third as a consequence of those tax cuts.

How often are you going to repeat this BS? How many times do you have to be proven wrong and humiliated for your ridiculous mathematical mistakes and ignorance of the tax code?

The big lie....repeat...repeat...repeat. Shameful :mad:

Kaa
03-08-2010, 02:17 PM
Us po' folks...

ROFL...

How big is your boat, Norman?

Kaa

High C
03-08-2010, 05:27 PM
You're right, it saw its income taxes fall... not its overall taxation.....

So when my largest tax was decreased by a third, it had no effect on my overall taxation. :rolleyes:

http://whyfiles.org/236math/images/math_practice.jpg

High C
03-08-2010, 05:49 PM
....As for the rest of America.... not so much.

Let them eat cake.

Sharpie21
03-08-2010, 07:41 PM
Msrs. Bernstein, Smith, Cookie, Elf and Oznabrag: ya all seem to be troubled by a high degree of envy, or some other dissatisfaction over the take home pay some people enjoy. Why? Are you the arbiters of fairness about issues of income, or lifestyles, or possessions? Rather presumptuous I would say.
While I myself possess no great wealth, nor do I begrudge those that do. Especially those who have acquired that wealth as the fruits of their own labors, be it manual labor or intellectual pursuit. My attitude is work hard, work smart and enjoy what you have earned. If, that is, the likes of the "class warriors" that prowl these pages will let you.
What is your annual income Mr. Bernstein? Mr. Smith? Cookie? Elf? Oznabrag? What business is it of mine you might ask? In all honesty, it is none of my business. But, in so far as you have determined that you are the arbiters of appropriate incomes for others, methinks I have just as much right to be the arbiter of appropriate income for you. So?
Do have any inkling of what a trap you fall into when you attempt to exert that level of control over the lives of your fellows?
Imagine for a moment that this health "reform" monstrosity becomes law. Can you reach your mind a decade into the future and imagine what the payers of your health care bills might start asking (read: demanding of you)? What is your BMI? Hmmm, too high. Let me see what is in your cupboards that you shouldn't be having.
How much grog you got in that flask? Hmmm, too much, and way too fine a blend for a commoner like you, hand it over.
And that boat, Jesus, 45'? Way too effin' rich for you, it's unfair to the poor fellow next door.
In reality, do you think these things won't come to pass as a result of your constant whining about the unfairness of income distribution? It's not such a stretch.
The problem arises when you make that leap and begin to believe that government's main job is to 'fix' all the inequalities you see in society. So I guess you would prefer to live in a world with no inequalities? Does that mean we all get 45' sailboats, pretty neat, 'cause I certainly can't afford one.
But wait, that means that someone is going to have to give me a 45' sailboat, and there certainly aren't enough of them to go around. I'll bet the arbiters of fairness in the government can fix that inequality too, with just a little bit of rationing. We all get Puddle Ducks.
Welcome to Mr. Bernstein's world.

elf
03-08-2010, 07:50 PM
Read the Constitution lately, Sharpie21?

Sharpie21
03-08-2010, 08:27 PM
Yep, what's your point?

Sharpie21
03-08-2010, 08:58 PM
I'm not well schooled in Bible verse, but I think that God asked Caine where his brother was, meaning Abel, whom Caine had slain. Caine replied "am I my brother's keeper?" I think I get your point, but not your analogy.
Charity to our fellow men is a good and desirous thing. I am very generous with my resources, those that I am allowed to keep. I dare say I could be a lot more generous if I could keep a little more of my earnings. It is our moral duty, each of us individually, to be mindful of the misfortunes of others, and to help as we see fit and are able. I refuse, however, to accept the notion that some politicians or bureaucrats can make better choices than I. It is not the proper function of government to redistribute the wealth of the citizenry according to the whims of the political party currently in the majority.
As Elf will tell you, the Constitution of this great land was written by Men who suffered from excess taxation by the iron hand of remote and out of touch ruling class (sounds a lot like Washington D.C. doesn't it?) They wrote a document that was intended to protect property from confiscation and protect the rights of the minority from the tyranny of the majority.
We do not live in a pure democracy, although the thieves in DC act as if we do, and everything we own, we own solely because they allow us to keep it, for now.
Well, that just ain't gonna fly (or should I say float?).
As for healthcare, I know a little about that. I suffered from polio as a child and cancer as an adult. There are ways to get by, and to get better. Self reliance is the best way.
Now, if you don't mind, I want to go put a fresh coat of paint on my new puddle duck. :D

elf
03-08-2010, 08:58 PM
Yep, what's your point?

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

oznabrag
03-08-2010, 09:07 PM
... It is not the proper function of government to redistribute the wealth of the citizenry according to the whims of the political party currently in the majority.
...

Why is it that I get the feeling you had no problem with redistributing the wealth of the citizenry into the pockets of Halliburton?

Sharpie21
03-08-2010, 09:50 PM
Elf, I think that refers mainly to things like roads and bridges, certainly NOT socialized medicine. The Framers of our Constitution had a great deal of respect for personal property, personal responsibility, and the right of a man to keep what he earned. Try reading a bit of the other writings of the period. There was a lot of wrangling and horse trading that went into the drafting of that document, and what came out is a blueprint for governance that we would be well served to heed today.

Oznabrag, To the extent that Halliburton provided goods and services to the government, in accordance with the law and contracts, yes. If they were involved in criminal activity, no.

Mr. Bernstein, feel free to give all of your money to the disadvantaged and downtrodden. It's a free country, for now. For me, tithing would be seem to be a sufficient level of generosity. BTW, I don't know any of you guys very well, but I'm learning. There is a lot of anger channeling around out there. My best advice is let's just all learn to leave each other alone. I won't presume to tell you how to live, and you won't presume to tell me. Deal?

High C
03-08-2010, 09:55 PM
...I won't presume to tell you how to live, and you won't presume to tell me. Deal?

You'll get no takers on that one...it's the antithesis of modern American liberalism.

oznabrag
03-08-2010, 09:56 PM
...I won't presume to tell you how to live, and you won't presume to tell me. Deal?

No deal.

When you're a citizen of this country, you abide by the laws. That means everybody else is telling you how to live.

Sometimes, one likes the laws, and sometimes not.

Don't like it?

Tough.

You can always move to Somalia, dude, I hear they got no taxes there.

Howard Sharp
03-08-2010, 10:22 PM
Don't think they have a government either, in fact Somalia might be a model state for the Tea Party, Glen Beck and anybody else who has no use for government. Lot of self reliance going on in Somalia, I bet.

Sharpie21
03-09-2010, 05:48 AM
Sorry guys, I think I will stay. And as long as I am here, I will continue to put up my two cents from time to time. I know that exposes me to risk, there are a slew of rather touchy liberal thinkers out there, but so long as we remain civil things should be OK.
I'm here for the boats, after all. This political stuff is a real distraction, but, since I like to spar as much as the next guy....I sometimes get drawn in.

I'll go back out to the garage now and see if the paint is dry on my new guv'mint issue Puddle Duck. Didn't come with any oarlocks, though. They're on the ration list, might get some in June or July, earlier maybe, if the union oarlock factory strike is settled by then, I hear they are on strike for something called grog insurance.....never heard of that before, but heck, I could go for something like that, yeah, why not? Everyone should have some grog, why should we have to pay for it.......?:D

Soundbounder
03-09-2010, 07:26 AM
Don't think they have a government either, in fact Somalia might be a model state for the Tea Party, Glen Beck and anybody else who has no use for government. Lot of self reliance going on in Somalia, I bet.I was thinking more along the lines of Saipan and the Mariana Islands.
There was a period when Limbaugh, Kudlow, Michelle Malkin, Hannity etc were touting Saipan as an "incubator of free market capitalism" without the interference of gov't.
Then when the child labor,human smuggling,forced abortions, forced prostitution, and indentured servant stories started appearing, they all wiped their hands.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_Abramoff_CNMI_scandal

Soundbounder
03-09-2010, 08:10 AM
I think that refers mainly to things like roads and bridges, certainly NOT socialized medicine. The Framers of our Constitution had a great deal of respect for personal property, personal responsibility, and the right of a man to keep what he earned.
Then why aren't you equally outraged with federally subsidized homeowners insurance for houses built in hurricane areas. Seems to me, you should be protesting outside Bill Kristol's or Limbaugh's waterfront homes with signs calling them a bunch of socialist freeloaders. Why is it you have no problem with this form of wealth distribution? Why are homeowners insurance subsidies ok, but health insurance reform is unconstitional?

Also, why aren't you equally outraged at the gov't subsidies for things like George Bush's Texas Rangers baseball stadium?
Isn't that a restribution of wealth?
Why the double standard?:confused:

Sharpie21
03-09-2010, 09:16 AM
Before I go about the business of dulling that freshly ground axe you are wielding, Soundbounder, I just wanted you to know that I checked out your blog. Very nicely done. Kudos.

At last, a point of agreement. I agree with you that the federally subsidized insurances you mention should be eliminated. Very bad policy.

Regarding the Texas Rangers Stadium, I don't know. There is a community benefit that factors into those decisions, regarding tax receipts over long time periods, ROI, etc. that are way too arcane to research and go into here. So don't put me in that category. I am dubious, at best.

Regarding a double standard, Doesn't apply here, as I never advocated for those policies you brought up.

High C
03-09-2010, 10:15 AM
Then why aren't you equally outraged with federally subsidized homeowners insurance for houses built in hurricane areas..

The National Flood Insurance Program is not subsidized. It is entirely funded by homeowner policy premiums. The maximum amount of coverage, BTW, is $250,000. So expensive homes go effectively uninsured.

Sharpie21
03-09-2010, 04:13 PM
Were they made whole? Was there any criminal wrongdoing charged? Are the politicos who made the deals now tossed out on their tushes? More info needed.

oznabrag
03-09-2010, 05:26 PM
You'd have to ask them... but it took a lawsuit and an angry judge to get them at least reasonable compensation.



Of course not. The beauty of unregulated or laxly-regulated capitalism (to the capitalists) is that stealing isn't a criminal act.



It happened so long ago, they're probably gone, but I don't believe that any specific action against them was taken, at the time.



Do the research, if you're interested.

The same bunch bought 30 acres of public land in downtown Austin for $3.72.

Slight exaggeration, but it was worth many, many millions more than they paid.

Did they get an angry judge on their case?

No.

The City just rolled over and cut them a tax break to go with.

Hanging's too good for that lot.

oznabrag
03-09-2010, 05:35 PM
Not Arlington, Norman, Austin.

MiddleAgesMan
03-09-2010, 05:46 PM
The Texas Ranger deal is covered in depth in David Kay Johnson's "Free Lunch." GWB used his clout as the son of the president at the time to gather partners for the venture. They bought a failing team for pennies, counting on turning it around by getting the taxpayers to build them a new stadium. As has become common the stadium was paid for by a penny sales tax increase.

Mr. Johnson's figures are: $86 million paid for the team; the sale price nine years later--$250 million; profit to the partners--$164 million; total amount generated during those nine years from the extra penny--$202.5 million.

Conclusion: every penny of profit taken by GWB and his partners came from that sales tax subsidy.

Is that the sort of redistribution of wealth that is just hunky-dory, Mr. Sharpie?

oznabrag
03-09-2010, 05:47 PM
Are we talking about two different circumstances? Isn't the stadium in Arlington?

Two different circumstances.

'Triangle Park' was not really a park, per se, but was State-owned land in Central Austin in the immediate vicinity of UT, the Texas School For the Blind, and The Texas Mental Health Hospital. It comprised about 25 to 30 acres at the intersection of Guadalupe and Lamar.

George Bush Jr. (may he rot in Guantanamo and then in Hell) made sure that his cronies got to buy it for next to nothing before he left the office of Governor.

Sharpie21
03-09-2010, 07:38 PM
MiddleAgesMan, I am wondering why, in your initial post that references the Krugman article, and since, no mention has been made of the fact that Bunning was using his filibuster rights to try to force the Dems to simply abide by their own recently passed PayGo legislation?

I know how much easier it is to simply smear him as a heartless capitalist, but, God bless him, he was making a principled stand to point out the hypocrisy of the Dems on the issue of fiscal restraint.

Mr. Bernstein, you are right, I should do my own research on that topic. I knew that as soon as I hit the 'post' key. Thanks, though, for the info you posted. Very informative, and it certainly does not paint a pretty picture.

And again to MiddleAgesMan, no. Please understand, in case I didn't make my point clear earlier, I am opposed to re-distribution of wealth. I am in favor of free markets. The example of the stadium in Texas in certainly not a case study in free markets at work. It may, however, be an example of public/private partnership gone awry. I will have to do some research (my own) on the impact the project has had on the larger community of Austin, and especially over time. Is the community better off by virtue of having the Rangers still in town, and what has the impact been overall on tax receipts in the decade since? I said earlier that I am dubious about that kind of deal. Still am. :confused:

oznabrag
03-09-2010, 08:12 PM
MiddleAgesMan, I am wondering why, in your initial post that references the Krugman article, and since, no mention has been made of the fact that Bunning was using his filibuster rights to try to force the Dems to simply abide by their own recently passed PayGo legislation?

I know how much easier it is to simply smear him as a heartless capitalist, but, God bless him, he was making a principled stand to point out the hypocrisy of the Dems on the issue of fiscal restraint.

Mr. Bernstein, you are right, I should do my own research on that topic. I knew that as soon as I hit the 'post' key. Thanks, though, for the info you posted. Very informative, and it certainly does not paint a pretty picture.

And again to MiddleAgesMan, no. Please understand, in case I didn't make my point clear earlier, I am opposed to re-distribution of wealth. I am in favor of free markets. The example of the stadium in Texas in certainly not a case study in free markets at work. It may, however, be an example of public/private partnership gone awry. I will have to do some research (my own) on the impact the project has had on the larger community of Austin, and especially over time. Is the community better off by virtue of having the Rangers still in town, and what has the impact been overall on tax receipts in the decade since? I said earlier that I am dubious about that kind of deal. Still am. :confused:

Thass 'cawz yer tawkin' 'bout Arlington, but yer sayin' Austin.

My bad, Sharpie. My thread drift.

Sharpie21
03-09-2010, 09:18 PM
Still no mention of the Dem's role in this standoff. Hmmm.....methinks it must be indefensible, as well as a demonstration of the callous disregard for your children, who are left to foot the bill for the spending binge under way in Washington right now..

Yeah, that Arlington-Austin thing. I've been to both cities, but the names are interchangeable in my mind. Guess its time to visit again. I have a cousin who now works for Dell in the Austin/Round Rock area. Good reason to go back.

Keith Wilson
03-09-2010, 09:28 PM
Worrying about deficits during the worst economic troubles since the 1930s is worrying about water conservation when your house is burning. The essential thing right now is to get the economy growing at a reasonable rate, and for more people to get back to work to generate more demand. A rational government runs deficits in recessions, and either balances the budget or runs surpluses in good times. Doing the opposite, (remember "deficits don't matter"?) as appears to be the preferred policy of conservatives lately, is simply insane.

Sharpie21
03-09-2010, 09:41 PM
"For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled."

Substitute the word policy for the word technology.

Deficits were too large under the Bush administration, as I have acknowledged in an earlier post. But to imply that the staggering deficits being run up now are somehow rationalized by prior poor policy, is to imply that nature can be fooled.

The inevitable outcome of the Obama spending binge, coupled with with the spending bonanza implicit in the "health care reform," layered on top of the economic stagnation that will result from the "cap and tax" scheme is disaster beyond comprehension. We'll all be living in our boats. :eek:

Sharpie21
03-09-2010, 09:56 PM
One more quick thought, what was the point of the Dems passing a paygo bill?

Are you not the slightest bit embarrassed that within a matter of a week, Harry Reid and his crew refuse to abide by the concept, while hundreds of billions of unspent, and unneeded, "Stimulus" money sits idly on the sidelines. Reid and crew embark immediately on more deficit spending, holding the "Stimulus" money for future use as an election year slush fund.

Quite obviously, the Paygo bill is to be trotted out during the election campaign next fall as "evidence" of the Dems commitment to fiscal austerity.

Not just a tiny bit embarrassed by that?

oznabrag
03-09-2010, 10:08 PM
Are you embarrassed by that?

Sharpie has no shame, really. He's a zombie, after all.

Keith Wilson
03-09-2010, 10:11 PM
Deficits were too large under the Bush administration, as I have acknowledged in an earlier post. But to imply that the staggering deficits being run up now are somehow rationalized by prior poor policy, is to imply that nature can be fooled.That 's not what I said. I said that a rational government runs deficits in a recession, the deficits being proportional to the severity of the recession. Basic Keynsian economics. The fact that the previous administration was irresponsible does not justify current deficit spending; it would be necessary whatever they had done. Previous deficits limit current options, but they don't justify anything.
The inevitable outcome of the Obama spending binge, coupled with with the spending bonanza implicit in the "health care reform," layered on top of the economic stagnation that will result from the "cap and tax" scheme is disaster beyond comprehension. We'll all be living in our boats.Aaaaah!! The sky is falling!! Few things are inevitable in this world except not leaving it alive, and I'm no better at predicting the future than anyone else, but the likely result of not stimulating the economy sufficiently will be far worse than that of current policies. We've managed to avoid a depression by vigorous and timely government action; now we need to shorten the recession as much as possible.

The argument that we can't afford heath care reform simply doesn't hold water. What we can't afford is doing nothing and letting current trends continue. The US already pays nearly twice as much per capita for heath care as the rest of the civilized world, and the differential is widening every year. Every other developed country treats health care as tax-financed public good, they insure everybody all the time, their results are at least as good as ours, and they pay far less. We can no longer afford the current system.

Sharpie21
03-09-2010, 10:19 PM
One man's hyperbole is another man's rational conclusion. I know that Obama's first budget proposal has not been passed, but it is a foregone conclusion that it will be, as the vote on that monstrosity will occur prior to the November election. I know that 'cap and tax' is not now law, nor is the 'health insurance reform.' Either scheme becoming law with result in economic stagnation. Both becoming law.... I repeat, disaster beyond comprehension.

I don't think I am peddling fear here. I'm normally rational and calm. I believe what is coming out of Washinton these days will change our country for the worse. It will take a decade to undo the damage.

Refer to the Richard Feynman quote above.

BTW, Mr. Bernstein, I'll bet you are already living on your boat, damned capitalist. I bet she's a beauty too.

oznabrag
03-09-2010, 10:23 PM
...It will take a decade to undo the damage.

...

Jesus God! If it's gonna take 20 years to undo the damage that Bushco did, and another decade to undo the damage that Obama's gonna do, does that mean that all the Presidents for the next 30 years are just gonna hafta wait their turn?

Keith Wilson
03-09-2010, 10:35 PM
I know that 'cap and tax' is not now law, nor is the 'health insurance reform.' Either scheme becoming law with result in economic stagnation. Both becoming law.... I repeat, disaster beyond comprehension.Even 100% tax financed health care has not resulted in economic stagnation in any other country, why should it do so here? Again, we already pay far more for health care than the rest of the developed world, for no better result, and the cost of heath insurance is a major cost for US business which other countries don't have. The current situation is what we can't afford, and it's getting worse every year. Here you go - the evidence of 20-odd other countries:

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2009/07/09/business/econgraphic3.jpg

Keith Wilson
03-09-2010, 10:38 PM
Deficits have gone up and down many times. The only recent administration to have a significant surplus was of course, Clinton's.

http://www.futuresmag.com/Issues/2009/December-2009/PublishingImages/FrxTrd_UsFedDeficit.gif

Sharpie21
03-10-2010, 07:43 PM
Zombie? Oznabrag, really and truly, the Republicans make me wince every single day. There is no shortage of boneheads on either side of the aisle, however. And I would guess that you do your share of wincing as well (heard Nancy Pelosi state that they need to pass the health care bill quickly so that we could see what was in it? Is there a surprise in there somewhere, wrapped in a pretty little bow?).

Basic Keynesian economics? Yikes. God help us all. Go read some Milton Freidman!

Pleasure to make your acquaintance, Norm. Call me Dale.

Keith, I appreciate the time you spent putting the data up here. Very informative, but alas, it raises as many questions as it answers.

I gotta take a break. Work beckons to me, I'm a damned capitalist, after all. Back next week.

oznabrag
03-10-2010, 08:53 PM
That's right. Zombies.

Personally, I believe that capitalism is the only economic system (that I know about) that meshes well with the human psyche.

It is NOT a system of government.

Zombies believe that it is, but they're delusional.

ETA: Not only deluded, but delusional. One delusion supporting the next.

Sharpie21
03-10-2010, 09:36 PM
Drawn back by provocative comment. Oznabrag, you make a great critic, that's easy, but can you expound on anything in a positive sense? Just, what is right? What is good? (Warning, my quiver is loaded.)

oznabrag
03-10-2010, 09:38 PM
What, you think capitalism is a system of government?

oznabrag
03-10-2010, 11:06 PM
Well? I've been hunkered down waiting for a hail of arrows, but no joy.

Do you think that capitalism is a political system?

oznabrag
03-11-2010, 01:29 AM
So...Is your quiver loaded, or are you loaded and quivering?

Do you think that Capitalism* is a political system, or not?

*There, I capitalized it for you! Maybe that'll make it easier.

On t'other han', iss bin foah arrs since you went all Robin Hood wit' yo' quivrin' arrahs'n serritch, an' Ah'm goin' to bed soon. Verrah soon!:)

Hasta la pasta,

John T

MiddleAgesMan
03-11-2010, 07:26 AM
Here is what I believe:

Everything in the world of man operates like a pendulum. Actually, many pedulums with but a single pivot point thousands of miles above the equator.

Let's say the political pendulum swings north and south and the other pendulums (religion, science, the natural world, etc.) swing east-west and every point between. Since these are virtual pendulums they do not crash together in the middle...they just keep on swinging.

Powerful men with their even more powerful entities have been trying to keep the Political and Economic pendulums on their side of the equator for an unnaturally long time. Their exertions have been succeeding but that success has created imbalance--a very serious imbalance. A pendulum that has been forced out, up and beyond its natural arc carries the power to swing wide in the opposite direction when those unnatural forces finally fail. It's frightening to contemplate the opposites of our Political and Economic systems but at some point some of us, or our children or grandchildren, will get some in-depth experience with those Opposites.

Money and power can upset the natural balance for a time but sooner or later something will break. Every empire throughout history follows the same life-cycle as Man: Birth, growth, maturity, sickness, then death.

skuthorp
03-11-2010, 07:30 AM
What, you think capitalism is a system of government?

Yes, with oligarchy as its object, one world wide company as its theoretical end point, and Murdoch hell bent on it being his!

Keith Wilson
03-11-2010, 08:23 AM
Basic Keynesian economics? Yikes. God help us all. Go read some Milton Freidman!I have. Mr Friedman's (and before him, Ms. Rand's) philosophy is precisely what got us in the economic mess we're in right now. Even Paul Volker has realized that. I like capitalism,and want to preserve it from its inherent self-destructive tendencies.

Charts are just a way of showing a lot of information in a small space. They're always limited to the data used to make them, and answer some questions, not others.