The poor and the needy are selfish and greedy …

Companies steal close to 10 billion dollars annually in unpaid overtime.”

It takes an emotional toll, it takes a mental toll, it takes a physical toll.”

“College students are facing a roughly $20 billion increase in the cost of their federal loans.”

“When you hear a politician promising to exempt the retired and near retired from changes to Social Security, while offering to make it more ‘secure’ for future generations, you now know the game plan.”

People are talking about Niagara Falls as a living destination, and obviously are interested in what we are doing.”

Whoever says meritocracy says oligarchy.”

Read the first 38 chapters of the book of Job if you would like a critique of this kind of thinking.”

“That tension between these two very different views of what it means to be ‘elite’ has inflected our history for over 400 years.”

Libertarians, please study harder for the next test.”

“Here are 8 ways our corporations, politicians and courts are trying to recreate the Gilded Age.”

“City privatizes its beach lifeguarding. The company does what companies do.”

“The easiest and simplest way for the government to create jobs is simply for the government to stop firing people.”

“Nicholas Shaxson delves into the murky world of offshore finance, revealing loopholes that allow the very wealthy to skirt tax laws, and investigating just how much of Romney’s fortune (with $30 million in Bain Capital funds in the Cayman Islands alone?) looks pretty strange for a presidential candidate.”

“President Obama is betting on America and American workers, and Mitt Romney is betting his resources in the Cayman Islands, in Bermuda, in Switzerland and God only knows where else he is putting his resources.”

“Unlike in past elections, in which even the most conservative Republicans argued that we should ‘ensure that all Americans would have affordable, quality, private health coverage,’ voters this year will choose between one party that supports universal health care and one that doesn’t, with health insurance for as many as 50 million voters hanging in the balance.”

“The prophets leave the comfort and familiarity of home and hearth and even their own country to report and point and scream and jump up and down and shock the kings and queens with discomforting stories.”

I sort of tell them … to go [expletive] themselves.”

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  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    ““The easiest and simplest way for the government to create jobs is simply for the government to stop firing people.””

    The unemployment rate isn’t just a number.  How and what the jobs are sends a signal.  If unemployment goes up it generally sends a bad signal but if it goes up because there are less people feeding off the producers that would send a very good signal. 

  • http://politicsproseotherthings.blogspot.com/ Nathaniel

     Define “producer.” And “feeding off.” And “unemployment” and “good” in the same sentence you shmuck. 

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Dude.

    Just when I think you might not put your foot in your mouth so hard…

    “Feeding off”?

    Really????????

    Why do you Libertarians constantly treat the poor like parasites?

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-uRlNDK_Z03o/TqwNcqfvgsI/AAAAAAAAANo/Wes3uDQUSwQ/s1600/ImpliedFacepalm.jpg

  • Lori

     

    Why do you Libertarians constantly treat the poor like parasites?

    Projection.

  • PJ Evans

     They want to be parasites?

  • Lori

    AFAICT, yes they basically do. They want people to get the benefit of worker’s labor for less than a living wage so that businesses can make record profits and they personally can have the things they want at low cost. They don’t want to call it parasitism, but that’s what it comes down to.

  • guest

    In addition to that, they’re ‘parasites’ because although they tend to have done very well with the support of public infrastructure they neither acknowledge that this is the case, accept that they they are ethically obligated to pay to support it, nor desire anyone else to have the same benefits they obtained.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    They want to be parasites?

    Wellllllll… they DO all fantasize about being part of the idle rich.

  • phantomreader42

    Invisible Neutrino asked:

    Why do you Libertarians constantly treat the poor like parasites?

    Simple projection.  Libertarians like Chris Hadrick are too stupid and lazy to accomplish anything useful, so they project their own utter worthlessness on the people they want to rob to justify their sociopathic obsession with ruining the lives of others for their own gain. 

    Somewhere, there might be one or two libertarians of Hadrick’s stripe who aren’t total wastes of skin.  But I’ve certainly never seen them.

  • Lori

     

    If unemployment goes up it generally sends a bad signal but if it goes
    up because there are less people feeding off the producers that would
    send a very good signal.    

    Don’t you have a meeting of your “Ron Paul Is The Bestest” club to get to Chris?

  • JonathanPelikan

    Get out.

  • Loki100

    If unemployment goes up it generally sends a bad signal but if it goes up because there are less people feeding off the producers that would send a very good signal.

    I agree with you. If the unemployment rate goes up because the proletariat throw off the shackles of the capitalist class, sending that cabal of criminals out of work, it would only be a good thing.

    You do realize that the producers are the people who actually produce things, and not the executives?

  • Tonio

    To expand on Atkins’ point, the concept of meritocracy only works if one maintains the fiction that the world is a just place.

     In my experience, the people who push the concept either have money and power and seek to preserve these, or believe they deserve money and power and they’re being unfairly hampered by government or by notions of equality. At times the rationalizations resemble a parody of Christian theology, as in “The market giveth and the market taketh away, blessed be the name of the market.”

    I’ve even heard it suggested that belief in meritocracy is necessary even if it isn’t true, otherwise people would have no motivation to achieve anything. This is the same mentality used by some fundamentalists who accuse atheists of lacking any basis or reason for morality.

    I suspect that on some level, the meritocracy concept works for adherents the same way that theologies about vengeful gods works for fundamentalists. They might draw false comfort from believing that the poor deserve their fate because of lack of effort or morality, denying the terrifying possibility that they’re just as vulnerable as anyone else to bad luck.

  • Kubricks_Rube

    if it goes up because there are less people feeding off the producers that would send a very good signal.

    Small business owner: “Hey, Jim, how come you haven’t been coming around the store as much?”

    Jim: “Well, I lost my job driving the school bus.”

    SBO: “That’s great!”

    Jim: “Huh?”

    SBO: “It’s a very good signal. Less people feeding off the producers- no offense. I can start hiring again!”

    Jim: “That is great, can I apply for a job?”

    SBO: “Well I’m not hiring right now. I don’t have enough customers to justify the increase in staff. But just as soon as demand picks up I’ll put you right at the top of the list.”

    Jim: “When do you think that might be?”

    SBO: “The teachers, firefighters and police officers haven’t been by much lately either, so any day now!”

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    I remember reading the full version of the article AZSpot  quotes at Salon.com.  I found it a little alarmist (or maybe just pessimistic) but I otherwise recommended it as a cultural primer on the differences between many people in the American elite.  

  • http://profiles.google.com/kmdavisus Karen Davis

    “And when they are not heeded, when Pharaoh and his gods do not relent
    but harden their hearts, the Almighty Bearer of Justice liberates them
    by overthrowing the carts… Because the way things are is not
    right, and the God of Justice seeks to make all right.”

    Funny. the way

  • malpollyon

    It’s particularly telling that the people that Libertarians (and many other types of conservative for that matter) look up to as “producers” never do anything in the way of actual production themselves. For all the talk of mixing one’s labour to produce value you’ll note that Libertarians valourise railroad owners not railroad labourers. So yes Libertarians rail against people who actually make things as parasites whilst praising the actual parasites who benefit from their labour. 

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    Malpollyn- We valorize entrepenours for sure. Without them what is there? People wandering around looking for something  to do.

    Nathaniel-  people who are paid with tax dollars, wether they are beaurocrats or war profiteers are not subject to the economy the way we are. We can stop going to a cupcake store and it has to close. We can’t stop paying the office of whatever at city hall because  the consumer doesn’t have the choice to do so.  Inevtiably this is giong to lead to waste and abuse. My guess is the least important people in government will hold on to their jobs and the most important will be let go One, because beaurocrats are full of themselves and two because of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Washington_Monument_Syndrome

     Greece, for example,  has a huge problem with corruption. If they were to announce they were getting rid of huge amounts of their government, in essence telling the market they were going to do something abuot that corruption, the market would respond.

    The point is unemplyement isn’t just a number.  If the employment rate went down to 4 percent next month but it was because the government somehow hired millions of people that would not indicate any kind of rebound it would just mean the government borrowed a ton and has no real plan for dealing with structural  problems.

    Also, I don’t regard the poor and needy as parasites. My statement was in regard to the thing I quoted not the title of the topic.

  • http://www.facebook.com/chrisalgoo Chris Algoo

     Except that millions of people would now have jobs. That minor detail.

  • Lori

     

    The point is unemplyement isn’t just a number. 

    No you soulless cretin, unemployment is just human beings.

  • EllieMurasaki

    So why’s it so hard to get a loan to start a business?

    And I don’t know about in other states, but in my state, if you don’t want to pay the state money to start a business entity but you still want to start a business, start it as a sole proprietorship or a general partnership. We register GPs if they want to be registered, and a GP that wants to be a limited liability partnership must be registered, but otherwise we don’t care about GPs, and we certainly don’t care about sole proprietorships. Limited liability companies, corporations, limited partnerships, them we care about. And if you’re okay with paying the state money to start your business entity but you don’t want to pay the wages of the state workers who deal with that shit, don’t order expedited processing, because the ordinary fees and the taxes go to the general fund but the expedited fees go to the Division of Corporations operating expenses including but not limited to labor.

    (My job includes tracking down the documents indicating that company A merged into company B to sell to the company B rep who wants proof that company B owns property that last hit public records as being sold to company A. In libertarian paradise, I expect my job’s safe, though I doubt my benefits would be. The Department of Education folks upstairs, not so fortunate.)

  • Beroli

     

    pepperjack- so whny not pay all public employees a million dollars a
    year then, regardless of how good a job they do. They will still be able
    to spend more money which is the be all and end all of the left
    apparently: blind consumerism.

    You have no concept of actual human suffering, do you?

    YES, you sniveling sack of garbage, “The Left” considers it nonnegotiable that people have ENOUGH TO EAT. The fact that you don’t makes you as vile as any of the people you occasionally criticize for warmongering. Just significantly more cowardly.

  • PJ Evans

     Right up there with the Florida legislator who thinks that having a job that doesn’t pay enough to live on means that you’re lazy. It doesn’t have anything to do with the business owner not paying people enough to live on (and certainly doesn’t call for a minimum wage that’s enough to live on).

  • http://loosviews.livejournal.com BringTheNoise

    We valorize entrepenours for sure.

    Most executives aren’t entrepreneurs. Not by a long frackin’ shot. As just one example, when did you last hear of a new bank?

    Without them what is there? People wandering around looking for something  to do.

    I think you may want to look into some Soviet history. No entrepreneurs there, but oddly enough, plenty of people doing actual work. (Not to defend the USSR and it’s many, MANY abuses, flaws and other problems; just refuting the “entrepeneurs are the only way to get things done”)

    If the employment rate went down to 4 percent next month but it was
    because the government somehow hired millions of people that would not
    indicate any kind of rebound it would just mean the government borrowed a
    ton and has no real plan for dealing with structural  problems

    I suspect the plan for dealing with structural problems would involve all the extra taxes that would be coming in from the massive increase of consumption involved in reducing the unemployment rate by HALF. Just imagine the knock-on effects of that – you’d probably inject enough extra cash into the economy the get rid of the rest of the unemployment…

    They will still be able to spend more money which is the be all and end all of the left apparently: blind consumerism.

    You’re wrong, but I’ll take blind consumerism over letting the right lead us into neo-feudalism.

  • Loki100

    As just one example, when did you last hear of a new bank?

    A lot of them sprung up in the housing bubble. Of course they weren’t new banks, so much as a dummy corporations for existing banks so that the risk could be on independent companies and allowing those existing banks to resell the mortgages to their own customers while still claiming plausible deniability of the quality of those loans.

  • http://loosviews.livejournal.com BringTheNoise

     Ahh, yes, the vaunted “risktaking” that entitles “entrepreneurs” to treat the rest of the world like crap.

  • Lori

    Oy. I swear one of these days I’m going to totally lose my shit and deck someone who trots out that “risk taking” crap to justify CEO salaries. CEOs are about the most risk-insulated people in the world. If they do a good job they get paid huge piles of money. If they do a bad job they get paid huge piles of money. If they get fired they get paid huge piles of money and then they move to another company that pays them huge piles of money whether they do a good job or not.

  • Loki100

    We valorize entrepenours for sure. Without them what is there? People wandering around looking for something  to do.

    Amazingly enough we’ve had at least 6,000 years of economic systems that didn’t include “entrepreneurs” as defined by Jean-Baptiste Say, who coined the word “entrepreneur.” During all that time, people were not wondering around looking for something to do.

    Inevtiably this is giong to lead to waste and abuse.

    The overwhelming amount of waste and abuse comes from private-public contracts. Such as military contractors, which is by far the largest source of waste and abuse in the government. Of course even that pales in comparison to the accumulated impact of white collar crime, which pretty much proves that waste and abuse is far more of a private sector problem than a public sector one.

    If the employment rate went down to 4 percent next month but it was because the government somehow hired millions of people that would not indicate any kind of rebound it would just mean the government borrowed a ton and has no real plan for dealing with structural  problems.

    Actually hiring a large number of people, and paying them decent wages is, in fact, a perfect plan for dealing with the structural problem of unemployment.

    so whny not pay all public employees a million dollars a year then, regardless of how good a job they do. They will still be able to spend more money which is the be all and end all of the left apparently: blind consumerism.

    I really, really, really love the projection here. Your entire ideology is dedicated to blind consumerism. That’s the very foundation of everything you believe.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    The overwhelming amount of waste and abuse comes from private-public contracts. Such as military contractors, which is by far the largest source of waste and abuse in the government. Of course even that pales in comparison to the accumulated impact of white collar crime, which pretty much proves that waste and abuse is far more of a private sector problem than a public sector one.

    Government and military contractors are a large and diverse group of entities of all sizes, most of which perform important jobs efficiently. It’s unfair to disparage them as a group on the basis of a comparitvely small number of big players who do an inordinate amount of harm. 

  • Loki100

    Government and military contractors are a large and diverse group of entities of all sizes, most of which perform important jobs efficiently. It’s unfair to disparage them as a group on the basis of a comparitvely small number of big players who do an inordinate amount of harm.

    Certainly true. There are plenty of good, honest government contractors. And then there’s the fact that Haliburton charges $100 dollars a load to wash the army’s clothes.

    But even the good, honest people are part of an extremely wasteful system. My friend is an accountant for the military, and he’s been working for years to get ready for an audit. One of the things he told me is that the military often pays out money to private contractors when they bill it, without even bothering to check if the service was completed, or even contracted in the first place. In such a system honesty and goodness have no place. 

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Actually, Ross? In Canada, it’s been shown* that generally, P3s (Public-Private Partnerships) tend to cost more and deliver less satisfactory results than when the government assumes overall control of the funding and the logistics of a project right through to completion and beyond, rather than providing funding and leaving a great deal of the day to day control to a private company upon completion.

    You can’t tell me the difference will be substantial going from Canada to the US.

    * no immediate web-sources but I have a print booklet I can scan the relevant pages from if asked.

  • Albanaeon

    “If the employment rate went down to 4 percent next month but it was
    because the government somehow hired millions of people that would not
    indicate any kind of rebound it would just mean the government borrowed a
    ton and has no real plan for dealing with structural  problems.  ”

    Umm…  no.   First of all there are a number of ways to have raised that money, most notably raising taxes on the ultra-wealthy, or instituting a transaction tax on stock trades.  So no need for borrowing.  Or we could even go more esoteric and point out as the issuer of currency, the government basically has the money it says it has.  And if it wants to stop pretending its on a de-facto gold standard to make the parasite rich class happy with low inflation and says people need jobs then again its not borrowing, its being responsible

    And yes it would be responsible.  We are creating an entire generation of people that will contribute little if anything to the future of this country because there are NO JOBS.  And they did not create this mess, the parasitic rich did.  But our chattering class and bought politicians can only mutter and scream about deficits, but never actually suggest anything to fix it, except inflict suffering on regular people and the country abs a whole.  And given Europe’s crisis is only getting worse as austerity is implemented, its obvious that austerity doesn’t work.  Which, by the way, is what “leftist” economists predicted and is pretty simple to see why.  Removing money from an economy that currently doesn’t have enough money won’t work, period.

    Anyway,  if deficits are really this horrible horrible thing, and most of our deficit is coming from Bush tax cuts and our economic downturn, then addressing those two issues are addressing structural problems.  And the rich should be happy to contribute.  If deficits aren’t a problem then we need to stop pretending that it’s anything but a smoke screen to use this crisis to push ideological goals which benefit the parasite rich without regard for the consequences to actual people.

     Spending the money and getting people jobs are the biggest issues we have.  It’s crippling our future in nearly unimaginable ways and you seem to think that this is a good opportunity for the surplus population to get out of the way already.

    Which means that this is a good opportunity for you to go perform a certain impossible anatomical act…

  • konrad_arflane

     You realize you just linked to a Wikipedia article? In the *same post* where you claimed that without entrepeneurs, there would only be “people wandering around looking for something  to do”?

    Do you see the problem here?

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Chris, what’s your great contribution to the world? Clearly your high principles mean you wouldn’t be able to live with yourself if you were dependent on other people–so what work do you do that puts you above so many other people?

  • Jeff Weskamp

    Here’s the thing that Libertarians never understand: losing in the financial game is not like losing a chess game or a tennis match.  Failing in the financial game can mean losing one’s home, not having enough to eat, or being unable to afford necessary medical treatment.  And people threatened with those circumstances are not going to go quietly and calmly to the nearest alley and starve to death.  They will do whatever they need to do to survive, and when they do, they are sneered at for being “parasites.”

    The other fallacy is their belief that wealthy people confronted with changing circumstances that wipe them out financially will simply concede defeat and willingly surrender their wealth and privilege.  The problem is, *nobody* willingly surrenders wealth and privilege without a fight.  The difference is, Libertarians never seem to regard rich people using underhanded or unfair or even criminal means to hang onto their wealth as “parasites.”

  • Tonio

    losing in the financial game is not like losing a chess game or a tennis match.

    Or like losing a Monopoly game. A good subject for a film would be people playing that game but suffering real-life consequences. One player ends up with almost all the game’s money, and the others decide they have suffered enough and rise up against him or her. A metaphorical retelling of the French Revolution.

    (After seeing Versailles, I understood – the place embodied not just ostentatious wealth but also cult of personality. When the entrance has a portrait of yourself as the sun, covered in real gold, you just might think of yourself as above mere mortals.)

  • thatotherjean

    @1cfd07d71c70392c27d26165e23b0cf2:disqus : “After seeing Versailles…”

    That’s how I felt after seeing The Hermitage in St. Petersburg.  It was completed in 1762 and the Russian Revolution didn’t happen until 1917, despite some earlier rumblings.  How could it have taken so long?

  • PJ Evans

     The peasants got killed when they tried to revolt against the rich landowners. (It wasn’t that they didn’t try.)

  • thatotherjean

     Well, yes, but. . .I’m familiar with the Pugachev Rebellion and the Decembrists’ Revolt, but most Russian attempts at overthrowing the people in power were localized, small, and aimed at particular landowners.  There were palace revolts, attempting to replace the ruler with someone else;  but not until 1905 was anybody–so far as I know–interested in making government responsive to ordinary people, and that effort more-or-less failed.  Considering the unbelievable disparity in wealth between the very rich and the working people, it amazes me that it took until 1917 to make that happen.  Not that it worked out well, or anything…

  • http://guy-who-reads.blogspot.com/ Mike Timonin

     How could it [the Russian Revolution] have taken so long?
    Regular applications of t he Russian military. 

  • Magic_Cracker

    Puh-leaze! What are you, some kind of communist? It isn’t companies that are stealing close to 10 billion dollars annually in unpaid overtime, it’s just the Invisible Hand of the Free Market simply re-appropriating value stolen by the Fair Labor Standards Act!

    See how easy that is folks? Just <a href="http://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2012/07/putting-cruelty-first"strip out the specifics layer on the over-abstraction and you too can be a neoliberal economist!

  • Magic_Cracker

    Ugh…should read “See how easy that is folks? Just strip out the
    specifics and overlay with over-abstraction and you too can be a
    neoliberal economist!” 

  • Monala

    From the mental, emotional and physical toll article: “Frank Alexander, the director of Boulder County Department of Housing
    and Human Services points out a simple fact that can often be forgotten:
    It’s a lot easier to get back to self-sufficiency when you have access
    to benefits.”

    A Facebook friend recently shared some letter to the editor in which the person wrote about how SNAP benefits are at an all time high, while the Dept. of the Interior had new regulations about not feeding wildlife because they become too dependent on humans. (And you know, I’ve seen some of those signs in parks. They usually don’t mention dependency on humans, but rather than human food isn’t really suited to the animals’ healthy and diet).

    My friend who posted this and some of his commenters made remarks about all the freeloaders on SNAP, and why can’t we realize that what’s true for animals is also true for humans.

    I wrote back three things: 1) unless you’re hunting and growing all your own food, you’re just as dependent on someone else to provide it for you; 2) my family was on food stamps for 6 months in 2010, when both my husband and I were unemployed. Having food stamps allowed us to keep eating, while using the limited funds we got from unemployment to keep a roof over our head, the lights on and our cars on the road. Without that, we wouldn’t have been able to get jobs again; and 3) with this attitude, you’re suggesting that you’re rather see your fellow Americans starve, and that is a very un-Christ-like attitude.

    They responded back, saying that of course they don’t want people to starve, but my family is an example of how food stamps should be used, just to get you back on your feet and most people weren’t using them that way.  I wrote again, saying my family is NOT some special exception. The reason that food stamp rates are so high right now is because there are many people like my family, struggling with unemployment.

    Crickets in response.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     > Crickets in response.

    Let me offer you the cheers you should have received then.

    It’s hard to underestimate the impact on someone who believes that THEY are all thus-and-such of discovering that someone they’ve already gotten to know is one of THEM.

    I’ve seen this work apparent miracles in my own life with people who ascribed all kinds of fictional traits to queer people, Hispanics and Jews; I’ve no doubt you had a significant impact on your friends, even if they didn’t say anything.

    And even if I’m completely wrong about that, and it had no lasting impact at all, it was still a righteous act.

  • Lori

    Mostly OT, but sort of a counterbalance to tales of rich jerks—–Seth MacFarlane just paid to have all of Carl Sagan’s personal papers transferred to the Library of Congress. Apparently the entire haul is about 800 file cabinet drawers worth.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-205_162-57462087/carl-sagan-papers-donated-by-family-guy-creator-seth-macfarlane/

    MacFarlane is also going to produce a remake of “Cosmos” with Neil deGrasse Tyson.

    http://www.wired.com/underwire/2012/07/pl_macfarlaneqa/

  • Jenny Islander

    a remake of Cosmos with Neil DeGrasse Tyson. 

    My inner tween just started doing the Snoopy Dance.

  • Jessica_R

    Oh dammit, I’m really not comfortable having positive thoughts about Seth MacFarlane. 

  • Lori

     I totally get that.

  • LouisDoench

     I’ve always wanted to have “papers”.  Mine will probably fit on my iPad…;(

  • Lori

     On topic: Harold Pollack at Reality-Based Community has written a nice piece about why out current dog-eat-dog system isn’t even all that good for people who are doing well.

    I’m enjoying Chris Hayes’ Twilight of the Elites.
    Hayes excoriates our nation’s insulated meritocratic elite, which he
    argues wrongly replicates its own privilege through access to fancy
    secondary schools, test prep courses, alumni donations, and more. Hayes
    describes a frantic, often zero-sum competition for positional goods in
    which dramatic inequalities among parents thwart fair competition and
    equality of opportunity in the next generation. 

    http://www.samefacts.com/2012/07/personal-moment/fear-of-falling/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+RealityBasedCommunity+%28The+RBC%29&utm_content=Google+Reader

  • Loki100

    Well I was just on a website where people were railing on teachers (again) as being overpaid, greedy (?), and lazy (?). It rather amazes me how in a span of about four years our country has turned on teachers, firefighters, and the police. I really do not see how we can survive for much longer.

  • Lori

     

    It rather amazes me how in a span of about four years our country has turned on teachers, firefighters, and the police.  

    The Right wing has hated teachers since forever. It’s basically a necessity for them. The thing that surprises me is that they’ve now openly turned on firefighters and cops. I knew that they wanted to kill unions once and for all*, but I thought the flag waving, mom & apple pie thing about firefighters and the authoritarian love of uniforms and guns would continue to make them immune. Obviously I was wrong. With the rise of the Tea Party faction the GOP really has totally lost the plot.

    *Still the single best argument for the need to have strong unions.

  • Loki100

    The Right wing has hated teachers since forever.

    Yes, the right wing has hated teachers, always. But in times past they used to couch that hatred by calling them ideologically biased. It wasn’t until these past few years that calling teachers lazy and greedy and overpaid was actually an acceptable talking point.

    One thing that always amuses me is that there is a supposed “liberal bias” in everything relating to the accumulation and transmission of information. Education, the journals, the University system, Journalism, government departments.  I think we can just assume that knowledge, information, and reality all have a liberal bias.

  • guest

    It just occurred to me that a philosophically committed libertarian would prioritise working out the financial value of everything he’s received in his life, starting with his parents, deducting from that figure all the taxes he’s paid so far, and then determining a payment plan for paying off the rest of the debt (because it’s guaranteed that what he’s paid is far less than what he’s received).  Once he’s done that, he’d be ethically entitled to insist that everyone pay his own way.

  • Lori

    The libertarian doesn’t have to repay his/her parents. Mom & dad chose to give all that stuff and you don’t have to pay back gifts.

    Libertarians are also in the black with the government. They’ve had their money taken from them at the point of a gun and they’ve been forced to give up other parts of their Freedom! due to government regulations. Freedom! is worth more than money, so if anything the government owes them.

    I wish I was making that up.

  • guest

    I can imagine them arguing that…but it seems to me that if they hadn’t wanted to be obliged to pay for the roads and the schools and the medical research and the aqueducts they shouldn’t have been using them.  

  • Lori

    But they have to use those things—-because the evil, freedom killing gub’ment won’t allow the almighty entrepreneurs to use their superior skills to unleash the dynamism of the Market to provide a better, lower cost alternative. Because the government is evil and hates Freedom! that’s why.

  • guest

    Oh!  Well I’m glad you’ve explained it to me.  :)

  • Emcee, cubed

    In fairness (and not to defend him, because he is still fractally wrong), I don’t think Chris means “producers” to be owners and executives.  He is spouting the ridiculous myth that unemployment going up because public employees are being laid off is a good thing because it means less that the public have to pay for those salaries. So “producers” here refers to “the general public”, which, for some inane reasons, public employees aren’t part of, because they don’t do anything important like protect citizens from crime, protect property and lives from fire and other disasters, or educate children so they can become fully functioning members of society…oh wait…

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

    If all of the employees of the government suddenly lost their jobs, business would go on as usual.  Because, unlike those of us with “real jobs,” government employees don’t spend money in stores, or purchasing services, or on entertainment.

  • http://www.facebook.com/chrisalgoo Chris Algoo

    I’m almost glad that Chris Hadrick posts here – he reminds us that there are people who will bow and scrape before power, no matter how many people (ahem, parasites) need to be harmed in the process.

  • http://deird1.dreamwidth.org Deird

    So, question:

    Say (for the sake of argument) that the poor are lazy ingrates, managing to get money for food from the hard-working rich people.
    How is that worse than a situation where the poor (evil buggers that they are) aren’t getting any money from the rich people, but are instead starving to death?

    Seriously – in a situation where the total resources of the population should allow everyone to be fed and clothed, why isn’t that a good thing?

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    Seriously – in a situation where the total resources of the population should allow everyone to be fed and clothed, why isn’t that a good thing?

    Our other libertarian friend around here, Mensomethingorother, made it perfectly clear the other day. Libertarians don’t give two shits about outcomes for other people, all the way down to whether or not they stay alive. Their only concern when terrible things happen is to be able to draw a line of blame that excludes themselves.

    If you can’t make ends meet, you’re lazy and/or stupid so it’s your own fault. NOT ON ME. If you have a disability or unforseen circumstances hit then your family and friends should have taken care of you, so it’s their fault. NOT ON ME.

  • Jenny Islander

    @twitter-58263099:disqus 
    According to the 2010 census, almost a quarter of all American children live in poverty.  Nearly 10 percent of the elderly live in poverty.  Even if you fool yourself that people receiving aid can work but won’t, these are millions of people who physically cannot work or should not have to because they are either trying to gain the education that might keep them out of the underclass or old and worn out and tired, damn it.  School lunch subsidies, WIC (bread, milk, and fruit for small children and formula for babies), and commodity programs for the very poor such as CSFP and TEFAP are under attack; some have already been cut.  What is this in aid of?  How does this help? 

    I think it’s time to repeat a fact that needs to be spread around: Before the current cuts, food aid cost you three fifths of one penny of each of your precious tax dollars.  According to an article in USA Today, the average American’s tax burden was $10, 549 per person in 2011, counting all federal, state, and local taxes.  If you assume that every single one of those dollars was cut up for use by the lazy stinky parasitic poor,* that means that the average American gave $63.29 per year for gray green beans and government cheese.  Sorry, kid, you have to get through every day with one less meal than you need for growth so I can go out to dinner one extra time this year.  Granny, you too.  You know how it is.

    Oh, and Joe down the street?  You have to go out and bust your butt to find  a job that’ll replace the one that was cut from under you, but you have to do it while you’re so hungry you’re getting dizzy.  Have fun digging through the restaurant trash for the baked potato I decided not to eat with my surf’n’turf.

    *Actually some of that tax revenue is already earmarked for other things, IIRC.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    School lunch subsidies, WIC (bread, milk, and fruit for small children and formula for babies), and commodity programs for the very poor such as CSFP and TEFAP are under attack; some have already been cut. What is this in aid of? How does this help?

    He doesn’t care whether anything helps or not. He’s only interested in himself, his access to cheap internet porn and legal marijuana, and his violent entertainment. The biggest problem Chris has expressed in his life is having to sort through junk mail.

    There’s no point trying to appeal to his sense of concern for others; it’s not there. When he first popped up several months ago I said he needed to be careful, because he was allying himself with an evil ideology. He knows this and doesn’t care.

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    Loki – “Such as military contractors, which is by far the largest source of waste and abuse in the government.”

    totally agree.

    “Actually hiring a large number of people, and paying them decent wages is, in fact, a perfect plan for dealing with the structural problem of unemployment.”

    no it isn’t. that’s a short term solution. It’s not addressing structural issues at all. for example, in another thread we were talking about how netflix has driven video stores out of business.  Sure, you could subsidize video stores if you wanted but eventually reality will set in: theres not enough profits for them to exist without the subsidy.  this isn’t as harmful an example as the military industrial complex but it’s the same thing.  “jobs” is stupid. mail people checks if you want, but don’t have them doing useless junk

    “Your entire ideology is dedicated to blind consumerism. ”

    no way. That’s why I promote a return to the gold standard: it benefits SAVERS. saving is prudent and has been since forever. 

  • Lori

     

    saving is prudent and has been since forever.  

    Oh, look. More glibertarian history FAIL. What a surprise.

     

    absolutely wrong.  

    And here’s another total non-surprise. Chris asserting something without providing any evidence. Because the actual evidence contradicts his assertion and he’s either too ignorant to know it or just ignorant enough to think we might not notice.

  • PJ Evans

     By now hse should have learned that we won’t ignore lack of evidence, not will we not notice that it isn’t there. But hse seems to be willfully ignorant, and has the shutters on hir mind welded closed.

  • Loki100

    no it isn’t. that’s a short term solution.

    It is not a short term solution, but even if it was, it would still fix a lack of aggregate demand and force wage rates in a more positive direction which would still provide a long term solution to the major problems of the economy.

    no way. That’s why I promote a return to the gold standard: it benefits SAVERS. saving is prudent and has been since forever.

    That’s not how capitalism works. And considering that 40% of middle class wealth has been wiped out over the last six or seven years, saving was not really prudent, now was it?

    great. the big wigs will have no problem paying for those and the little guys will get driven out.

    That’s not how the transaction tax works. It is a very small percentage on very large transactions that would only matter if you are doing hundreds of trades, most likely by computer, a day.

    they already are. they provide the govt with most of it’s revenue,. We have a spending problem, not a reveneue problem . the govt has way more revenue than it’s ever had.

    That’s objectively false. If you adjust for inflation, government revenue is at the lowest it has been since the 90s. If you don’t adjust for inflation, it is still lower than it was under Bush. As a percentage of GDP, it is the lowest it has been since Truman.

    We absolutely have a revenue problem caused by massive, massive tax cuts that benefited the wealthy at the expense of the poor. As well as the negative to 15% effective tax rate on corporations.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    no way. That’s why I promote a return to the gold standard: it benefits SAVERS. saving is prudent and has been since forever.

    You realize that this is the opposite of free-market capitalism, right? The whole *point* of capitalism is that money, like the photon, has no rest mass, and that wealth is the result of the *movement* of money.

  • PJ Evans

     Hse also doesn’t get that returning to the ‘gold standard’ would make things a lot worse – the value of all the money in the US alone is far more than the value of all the gold in Fort Knox. And it’s like that for all the other countries in the world, too: there isn’t enough gold.

  • http://loosviews.livejournal.com BringTheNoise

     The BBC recently did a documentary about returning to the Gold Standard – available here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01k9qd8 – which pointed out not only another Libertarian History FAIL: that the Long Depression (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_Depression) was caused by exactly this; the world ran out of gold. At least then we were able to find more in South Africa to restart financial growth.

    Oh, and even the supporters of the Gold Standard on the programme acknowledged that the change would involve making the current depression worse and even longer, but being Libertarians, other people’s suffering didn’t matter to them in the face of the Great and Holy Free Market.

    Not to mention the guy who wanted to “introduce” competing private currencies. Apparently he missed the reason that currency is currently issued by governments.

    Really, it’s well worth listening to.

  • Turcano

    Another problem with the international gold standard* is that the system required countries with trade surpluses (i.e., countries receiving gold from other countries as the difference on their trade deficits) to mint their surplus gold to inflate their currency and thereby equalize demand for foreign goods.  I’ll give you two guesses as to whether this actually happened in practice.

    In fact, the only two major surplus counties were the US and France, which are also the only two countries where the idea of returning the gold standard has any popularity at all.

    *The gold standard only works if lots of countries use it to replace floating exchange rates.  If a single country pegs their currency to gold (or any other commodity, for that matter), all you’re doing is creating an opportunity for gold to become undervalued on the international market and having investors purchase it en masse to be sold internationally for an easy profit.  This is called a speculative attack, and is how George Soros made his billions and royally buggered the economies of several counties, including the UK, in the process.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    In the case of the ERM, while there wasn’t a gold standard, it sounds like Britain committed the same fault as it did in the mid-1920s – the British tried picking a relative value for their currency which was too far out of whack.

    In the 1920s that led to the years-long miner’s strikes and consequent austerity measures as the British squashed domestic spending to keep inflation down so the value of the UK Pound Sterling would stay at the right par value.

    In the 1990s, at least there was now a second possible option – stop trying to fix the pound to the Deutsche Mark and let it float again. After, of course, $200 ($500?) billion landed in George Soros’s back pocket.

  • Turcano

     I did oversimplify the ERM, but I didn’t really think it prudent to try to explain crawling pegs to a goldbug.  Baby steps.

  • Consumer Unit 5012

    but being Libertarians, other people’s suffering didn’t matter to them in the face of the Great and Holy Free Market.

    “The Free Market is like Cthulhu:  it doesn’t actually exist, but its cultists are okay with making human sacrifices in hopes of summoning it.”

  • Albanaeon

    “or instituting a transaction tax on stock trades. ” great. the big wigs
    will have no problem paying for those and the little guys will get
    driven out.

    First.  Already happened.  Except for the great scam of 401k’s, foisted on us instead of pension plans and safety nets, middle class has no place in the Stock Market.  It’s a great big casino set up to have the big players win.

     “??? so you like getting .05 on your savings account?

    No, but since we have low inflation now to suit the parasites and savings returns that aren’t worth the charges on them, I don’t really see what your point is.

    “they already are. they provide the govt with most of it’s revenue,. We
    have a spending problem, not a reveneue problem . the govt has way more
    revenue than it’s ever had.”

    Nope.  First, their contributions are merely a factor of them having the most money.  Which is only an OMGDisaster fact to useful idiots like yourself.  Second, revenue streams are way down if you bothered to look at actual percentages vs. GDP instead of absolute numbers.  But that would require research instead of soundbites and I’m pretty sure that portion of your brain has shut down due to neglect.  Finally, if you were to happen to do some research you’d find that we have pretty much subsidized the rich to the point we give them more than they give us.  Which considering that we are hardly in happy rainbows these days, seems a bit counter productive right now.

    ‘absolutely wrong”

    Why?  It’s not just bleeding heart liberalism as too why they need jobs.  With less income, they contribute less to the economy which means it will never grow the way it should.  They’ll be more dependent forever on your dreaded govmint programs which will drain the economy even more.  There will be more social unrest which strains resources and hurts the economy more.  Everything points to having a large section of the workforce NOT working is bad for the long term good of the country.  Certainly far beyond some hysteria about balance sheet numbers.

    And gold standard really?  Leaving aside that it never prevented stock crashes and depressions before (I’d hope you’d have enough knowledge to realize the Great Depression was in the Gold Era), how exactly does it help the economy to have it based on how much shiny stuff we have?  We can still debase our money and print more than we can use and all that wonderful stuff, except that we’d now have to dig more shiny stuff from the ground to actually grow the economy.  Wonderful.  In the information age we’d be grubbing in the ground to satisfy some nostalgia and fetish for people that don’t understand its all just a shorthand for how much people trust their government in the first place.

    So, congrads.  A total fail on all levels.

  • http://loosviews.livejournal.com BringTheNoise

    saving is prudent and has been since forever.

    Tell that to the people of the Weimar republic, or Zimbabweans – who saw their currency COMPLETELY ABANDONED AND NOT REPLACED IN 2009. I fucking dare you to go tell someone who can literally say that their life savings became worthless pieces of paper that “saving is prudent and has been since forever”.

  • kittehonmylap

    I could *almost* say that Chris might have a point about not bloating govt if we had, oh, an infrastructure that wasn’t crumbling, and enough decently paid teachers, and…aww, hell. Nope. Can’t almost say it. We’re so far from having a bloated govt (particularly on the state and local areas) that cautioning against it seems really…stupid.

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    “That’s not how capitalism works.”

    caiptalism is not just consumerism. it’s based on private property, not just buying stuff.  peopel saving allows banks to have more money to lend out. it lowers interest rates which signcals to producers that long term projects are prudent to undertake.

    “Government and military contractors are a large and diverse group of entities of all sizes, most of which perform important jobs efficiently.”

    how can you tell? they don’t lpbby us, they lobby congress.

    “If you adjust for inflation, government revenue is at the lowest it has been since the 90s. ”

    does anyone remember us having problems like this in the 90’s? It seemed like we had plenty of revenue then. 

    “No, but since we have low inflation now to suit the parasites and savings returns that aren’t worth the charges on them, I don’t really see what your point is.”

    the point is we have very low interest rates so the money supply is growing and it is essentially a tax on our savings accounts. which would you prefer?  5% or .05?

    “Leaving aside that it never prevented stock crashes and depressions before (I’d hope you’d have enough knowledge to realize the Great Depression was in the Gold Era),”

    the great depression was in the Federal Reserve era.  the recession we’ve had since it’s inauguration are much more severe and frequent than before.

    “In the 1920s that led to the years-long miner’s strikes and consequent austerity measures as the British squashed domestic spending to keep inflation down so the value of the UK Pound Sterling would stay at the right par value.”

    churchill should have let the price of gold rise. instead he contracted the money supply and has called it the greatest mistake of his career.

    kittehonmylap – our government values war more than our infrastructure. giving them more money won’t change that. They’re interested in the balance of power in the middle east and subsidizing corn syrup not helping americans survive.

    These areguments against hte gold standard are fine but it’s not why we went off it

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

    you really want to defend this guy? and Vietnam?

  • http://loosviews.livejournal.com BringTheNoise

     It doesn’t matter who took the US off the Gold Standard and for what reasons. Nixon’s flaws don’t invalidate the things that he did which were good things. The Gold Standard doesn’t work now and would be a huge step backwards REGARDLESS.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Technically, what Nixon did was take the USA off a gold-exchange standard, since domestically it was not possible to buy gold at the nominal $35 (later $42) an ounce.

  • Albanaeon

     Gods.  You’re really bad at this.

    “caiptalism (sic) is not just consumerism. it’s based on private property, not
    just buying stuff.  peopel (sic) saving allows banks to have more money to
    lend out. it lowers interest rates which signcals (sic) to producers that long
    term projects are prudent to undertake.”

    Ummm… not really.  Banks are pretty much completely divorced from their actual reserves these days.  Oh they like having some form of money to charge people for lending it to them, but in reality most of the money they say they have comes from a general idea on how much their investments are worth.  Which is why we are having such issues now.  A lot of their assets are junk, but they continue to pretend they are full value.  People with not quite junk would love to have their value reflect reality, since it would free up a lot of money.  Since they can’t they are paying down debt (if they can) which is keeping a recovery from happening since its not flowing in the economy.  Since the economy is bad, banks aren’t willing to lend, businesses aren’t willing to expand because of lack of demand, and we just sit around and pretend that “confidence fairies” will bring accept out austerity sacrifices and bring back the good times and ignore that reducing money flow within the economy is never going to work. 

    And really, interest rates are only a small part of why someone would undertake a project.  A need and demand are far more important as it won’t matter what interest rate is if no one can buy widgets.   Which is again why our jobs crisis is THE FUNDAMENTAL PROBLEM of the economy, nitwit.

    “does anyone remember us having problems like this in the 90’s? It seemed like we had plenty of revenue then. ”

    We also had higher taxes on the rich which brought in money as taxes.  We had a growing economy and low unemployment, which brought in money and kept expenditures down.  If you had a point here, you lost it in being ignorant.

    “the great depression was in the Federal Reserve era.  the recession
    we’ve had since it’s inauguration are much more severe and frequent than
    before.”

    History, try it some time.  Panics and DepressionS were a common feature for the late 19th century and early 20th.  Which was interestingly known for large gaps in income and monopolies and all those other things that Rich Parasites like and everyone else doesn’t.  We implemented a whole bunch of reforms for the New Deal and got to spread them around after WWII and there weren’t any economic crisis (except one in Brazil) until we started undoing those reforms in the late 70’s and 80’s.  When inequality and Rich Parasites started gaining power again and we started having regular crisis again.  Why its almost like letting greedy bastards gain the reins of the country means they drive it off of cliffs to satisfy their shortsighted greed…

    “the point is we have very low interest rates so the money supply is
    growing and it is essentially a tax on our savings accounts. which would
    you prefer?  5% or .05?”

    Irrelevant.  Interest rates could be 50% and it wouldn’t really help right now.  So much money is going to rents for the parasite class that saving is a joke.  Wage stagnation and rising health care costs which more and more are piled on them and consumer prices rising because things like gas (whose price is 40% speculation held for three seconds mind you) are more expensive,  many families stretching their paychecks for every dime.  So again the low interest rates and low inflation are just great for rich parasites to sit on their money and watch it grow, or play in a rigged casino game of Wall Street, instead of it being a useful quantity.

    And for so much wordage, I notice that you really haven’t made much progress on actually presenting an argument.  So how about this, I asked why a focus on jobs over deficit reduction is, in your words, absolutely wrong.  Why don’t you focus on presenting a coherent argument about that instead of all this flailing.  It’s got to be tiresome.  For everyone.

  • Lori

     

    caiptalism is not just consumerism. it’s based on private property, not just buying stuff.  

    Again, do you ever think about what you’re writing before you hit “post”? How pray tell does one get private property without buying stuff? If it’s private property someone at some point either bought it or stole it. Are you advocating reducing consumerism by increasing theft or what?

    peopel saving allows banks to have more money to lend out. it lowers
    interest rates which signcals to producers that long term projects are
    prudent to undertake. 

    This pretty clearly shows that you aren’t a producer and don’t know anyone who is. Producers do not produce because interest rates are low. Producers produce because they believe someone will buy their goods. If you get everyone focused on saving then they don’t buy as much. If they’re not buying as much then fewer good will be produced.

    Have you ever taken an Econ class from someone with a clue or does all your “knowledge” come from the internet?

     

    how can you tell? they don’t lpbby us, they lobby congress. 

    What the hell does this even mean? Lobbying is not how we measure whether someone is doing a good job.

     

    does anyone remember us having problems like this in the 90’s? It seemed like we had plenty of revenue then.    

    Because the top marginal tax rate was higher than it is now and we had a much lower unemployment rate, so more people were paying in to the system and fewer were drawing out. You are making our point, not yours.

    I give up on the rest. You have a head like a brick.

  • Monala

     If anyone wants to reduce junk mail, there are already avenues to do it. There is the national Do Not Mail registry: http://www.directmail.com/directory/mail_preference/.  And this web site gives other ideas if that isn’t sufficient: http://www.donotmail.org/form.php?id=50

    That said, there are three types of mail that are exempt from Do Not Mail registries: 1) charitable donation solicitations*; 2) advertising by political candidates and/or ballot issues; 3) your local supermarket and drugstore circulars. But the registries will eliminate things like catalogs and credit card offers.

    * And if you don’t want charitable solicitations, give cash only and no contact information when you do any charitable giving. That way,  you won’t end up on charity give lists. The latter two will send mail to everyone in a geographic area, but most charities can’t afford to do that, so they will mail only to those who have given before to the same or a similar type of cause.

  • Monala

     Oops, replied to the wrong thread.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Banks in Canada, since the early 1990s, have been reaping around 50% of their profits (or revenues? I forget which) not from conventional banking, but from “investing”* in stock markets, as well as derivatives markets, mainly in foreign exchange.

    —-

    * The fact that even educated people can misuse this word is amazing. The number of people I’ve seen who actually hold shares and who nonetheless think that their share purchase directly handed money to the company in which they held the share is unbelievable. (which is how the whole notion of the idea that the stock market promotes the efficient allocatuon of capital came about**) Economists have repeatedly shown that aside from IPOs and share buybacks, none of the turnover of shares in a stock exchange represent actual transactions directly between a shareholder and the original company which issued the shares.

    99.5% of the annual trading volume in a given stock exchange (typical for those in the West, at any rate) is simply asset swaps between one shareholder and a prospective shareholder.

    ** Given that people have regularly referred to stock markets as “wild beasts”, “like a coyote tearing at red meat”, and so on, one suspects that the idea that stock markets represent any useful information is perhaps a bit overstated.

    In point of fact, extremely powerful and sophisticated computers are now being brought to bear to essentially do all the trading anyway. At some point the entire stock exchange will just be several hundred computer programs all frantically chasing numbers around and round, with what possible connection to the real economy?

  • Monala

    The number of people I’ve seen who actually hold shares and who
    nonetheless think that their share purchase directly handed money to the
    company in which they held the share is unbelievable.

    (blushes and raises hand) Um, yeah, I thought that. That’s what Junior Achievement taught me back in 7th grade, and my little books on investing they give us at work.

  • Consumer Unit 5012

    At some point the entire stock exchange will just be several hundred
    computer programs all frantically chasing numbers around and round, with
    what possible connection to the real economy?

    The ability to order CEOs to sabotage their companies in the long-term to make short-term stock profits, of course. 

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    Monala- it’s all the same people anyway in the threads. thanks for the tip.

    Alb- “We also had higher taxes on the rich which brought in money as taxes.”

    his point was our revenues are similar to what we got in the 90’s when adjusted for inflation.  It wasn’t about tax levels.

    “And really, interest rates are only a small part of why someone would undertake a project. A need and demand are far more important”

    well that’s obvious. You wouldn’t just start any project just because money was cheap. Interest rates do send signals to entrepenours which is why it’s dangerous to artificially lower them. Austrian business cycle theory.

    “Panics and DepressionS were a common feature for the late 19th century and early 20th.”

    They weren’t nearly as bad as the great depression or the current recession. and we didn’t have free banking or anything like that before that either.  There were panics relating to government interventions like when they tried to set a ratio for silver and gold. Of course everyone horded the gold.

    Canada’s banking system was much more laissez faire and also had a much better record, especially during the depression.

    “o again the low interest rates and low inflation are just great for rich parasites to sit on their money and watch it grow, ”

    at .05 % ?

    neutrino- the stock market is pretty much hedge fund computers responding to fed announcements at this point.

    lori- “Producers produce because they believe someone will buy their goods. If you get everyone focused on saving then they don’t buy as much. If they’re not buying as much then fewer good will be produced. ”

    There are different times to do different types of things. low interest rates would be the time to embark on long term projects, higher interest rates would be when you need to bring stuff to market.

    did you get my message on twitter?

  • PJ Evans

     <A href=:FAIL

  • Lori

     

    low interest rates would be the time to embark on long term projects  

    But only if you think that eventually they’ll make money. I’m not saying that low interest rates have no effect on business decisions, but they aren’t the driver you seem to think they are.

     

    did you get my message on twitter? 

    To whom was this addressed? If it was me then the answer is & always will be “no” because I’m not on Twitter.

  • Albanaeon

     I’ve spent 7 hours on a calc test so I don’t really have the patience to break down your points, except for this one.

    “at .05 % ?”

    Mitt Romney’s estimated (officially) worth $225 million.  So taking out our handy dandy Interest Calculator

    A=P(1+r/n)^(nt)

    So initial (P) is 225, rate (r) is .005, n is once per year, and t is one year.

    A=225(1+.005/1)^(1×1)
    A=225(1.05)
    A=226

    Which means that if Romney just stuck it in a bank with .o5% interest, he would still make one million dollars, which is over 28 times the poverty wage, and 17 times the average wage for a year. 

    In short, when you’re dealing with numbers as large as what we are talking, yes they can make money by doing basically nothing. 

    Or even shorter, learn math.

  • http://www.facebook.com/chrisalgoo Chris Algoo

    his point was our revenues are similar to what we got in the 90’s when adjusted for inflation.  It wasn’t about tax levels.


    GOVERNMENT GETS REVENUE FROM TAXES.

    Chris, do you actually care about people’s savings accounts, their jobs or their lives? If  so, why?

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    I meant Ellie sorry

  • EllieMurasaki

    The Twitter thing was to me? *goes to Twitter for the first time in ages* They redesigned it again. Dammit. Where’d they put the mentions? *finds faq* *finds tweet in question* Aha. *blocks* That was creepy, please don’t do it again.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    *doesn’t have a twitter account*

    … dare I ask what he wrote? (O_O)

  • EllieMurasaki

    Just ‘hi’. It’s the ‘tracking me down elsewhere on the Internet’ bit that’s creepy.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Chris Hadrick: PS I looked at your blog. You’re not exactly doing yourself favors putting a picture of an attractive woman in a traditionally sexually submissive pose.

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    I clicked on your profile sorry! Isn’t that what it’s there for?

    Neutrino- I love Barberella

    Richard Nixon progressive hero for his totally unprincipled ,desperation decision to move the US off the gold standard so he could continue to fund the unpopular Vietnam war.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Have you even given any thought to the fact that what Richard Nixon did politically, aside from his abuses of executive power, would be considered left-wing/progressive by today’s standards, is a marker of how seriously frakked up the political compass is in the USA? AT ALL?!

    He’s no hero, but he wa a lot more complex than today’s Republicans.

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    goldbugs = most central banks today

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    goldbugs = most central banks today

    Ok, you know that Tommy Lee Jones staring over his glasses thing? I’m doing it at my monitor right now in response to your statement, Chris Hadrick.

    You’re like the exasperating person in a class who seems to grasp basic shit, but trying to bridge from those basic concepts to anything more complex is virtually impossible.

  • Lori

    I’ve been doing this:

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203611404577043652396383484.html

    Central bank gold purchases soar

    “Total central-bank gold purchases in the third quarter more than doubled from the second quarter and were almost seven times higher than a year earlier as countries continued to diversify reserves, according to a World Gold Council report.
    At 148.4 metric tons, gold buying among central banks was at the highest since the sector became a net buyer of the precious metal in the second quarter of 2009, according to the quarterly report. ”

    Nixon was a machevelian with no actual principles.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I’ll grant you the gold purchases, but it likely is for a different reason than you think.

    1. “goldbug” is a colloquial term that refers to people who want to restore a gold standard (like, pre-1930s gold standard, not the Bretton Woods hybrid standard where gold was exchangeable for US dollars on the international market, but not within the US). You are misusing the term.

    2. Central banks are likely diversifying or altering their forex holdings. This could be for any number of reasons, but likely includes doing the equivalent of the strategic petroleum reserve: pushing down the price of gold down the road by increasing the supply on the market. It’s been done before.

    3. While I know people like the SGS and iTulip folks are fond of pushing the idea of a hyperinflation, the factor they’re ignoring is that the distribution of income and wealth is so lopsided in the USA, exacerbated by the recent economic troubles, that money velocity is likely slowed way down to the point where any money that gets pushed into the USA from the Fed’s Quantitative Easing sessions is likely to just end up in the hands of the rich anyway, who have little benefit from spending that money instead of speculating with it in markets not accessible to ordinary people*.

    * Please, don’t pretend the stock or forex markets represent anything close to “People’s Capitalism”.

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    They could make alot more money if they put their savings in a bank and the interest rate was higher.

    everyone would appreciate more yield in their savings account. The scale is meaningless, everything rich people have is on scale more than poor people.  soda costs the same for everyone, but it’s less of rich peoples total savings. 

    If we embrace people like Paul Krugman or Matt yglesies’s call for more inflation you know who will benefit? ME and other libertarians who have most of our savings in commodities. Do you want that?

  • Lori

     

    everyone would appreciate more yield in their savings account.  

    This would depend entirely on what they had to trade to get it.

     

    ME and other libertarians who have most of our savings in commodities.    

    You have most of your saving in commodities? You mean you’re a customer of GoldLine?

  • Kubricks_Rube

    They could make alot more money if they put their savings in a bank and the interest rate was higher.

    So what you’re saying is that with interest rates so low it is the time to invest instead of save? But the super-rational actors of the super-rational market aren’t doing so?

    everyone would appreciate more yield in their savings account.

    Not “everyone” has anything to put in a savings account. What we want is for all the money that is sitting and stagnating to be pumped into the economy so people can get jobs and have some money to spend and to get out of debt. For many people saving is a luxury.

    soda costs the same for everyone, but it’s less of rich peoples total savings.

    Thank you for summing up the logic behind progressive taxation. It wasn’t your intent, but well done.

  • Consumer Unit 5012

     Out of morbid curiosity, where do you think banks get the money they pay in interest on savings accounts?

  • AnonymousSam

    As a sociopath myself, I’m starting to get that same feeling of disgust and dissociation that I get from particularly rude atheists.

  • Raj1point618

    You mean he didn’t win you over with his Libertarian charm? Free market forces didn’t align in his favor?

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Keynes as long ago as 1936 pointed out the problem with assuming that savings is the originating vehicle for economic growth: Savers tend to be less numerous in the aggregate than spenders, because of a non-equal distribution of income (as well as wealth).

    The way banks make up for this discrepancy is to substitute loanable funds from fractional reserve banking in order to aid in fixed capital investment. This then exposes the overall economy (since the banking system now is highly geared, and is a necessary component to the flow of funds) to enhanced pro-cyclical behavior, in which a boom tends to feed on itself by means of loosened credit due to the way banks assess security for loans, and busts tend to feed on themselves as well due to tightened credit, again because of how banks must protect their own balance sheets by ensuring that any assets that secure their loans are of sufficient value.

    That’s fine if assets have a fixed value, such as a certifed authentic painting with an appraised value, but less fine when the assets are variable – like houses. And businesses, who often obtain lines of credit, or who obtain long-term loans on the basis of forecasts of future profits.

    Such future profits must necessarily come from demand, not supply.

    In short, from spenders, not savers.

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    kubricks- that’s the danger with artificially lowered interest rates. They don’t reflect reality.

    “For many people saving is a luxury.”

    There are plenty of rich people who spend alot of money too believe it or not!  and poor people who save. There is no class of savers that’s rich or poor. The eldery are hit hard by inflation. They aren’t jerks because they don’t want to starve.

    Do you want to charge rich people more for soda?? If not it’s an argument AGAINST progressive taxation.  Any flat tax rate is progressive anyway in the sense that 20 percent of a rich person’s income is more than 20% of a poor persons.

    Lori- I got mine elsewhere. If there is another round of Quantitative easing  gold will likely go up around 2000 an ounce.   If I wanted to be Scrooge mc Duck I’d be pushing the Krugman plan.  kind of weird isn’t it? Krugman and those guys detest gold yet their policies make it go higher while libertarian “goldbugs” favor policies that would lose them money a great deal of money if they were implemented (in general). 

    Chris algoo-  I had said  that our government has plenty of revenue, it just spends too much. He said our revenue wasn’t any higher than it was in the 90’s.  My point was we didn’t have these problems in the 90’s. Obviously 90’s levels of revenue were 3enough for the 90’s. So to say we have 90’s level revenues implies there was some sort of horror show in the 90’s and there wasn’t.

    neutrino- “Savers tend to be less numerous in the aggregate than spenders, because of a non-equal distribution of income”

    We want more savers not less though. Punishing savers with artificially low interest rates will not create more savers.

    goldbug is a general term used for people who are into the gold thing. Yes they are certainly diversifying their holdings out of dollars and into gold.   They are all net buyers not sellers  from what I understand.

    I agree QE will not do what that sort of thing has historically been credited with doing because of the current landscape. They have no choice though.

  • Consumer Unit 5012

     “My point was we didn’t have these problems in the 90’s.”

    …And the bridge was fine until it collapsed.  Your point?

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    banks get their money from deposits.

    No, the point is saying we are only taking in as much revenue as we did in the 90’s is just saying we are taking in as much as we normally do.  The revenues and the budgets are much much higher than the 90’s  in 99 the budget was like 1.8 trillion now it’s got to be double that.

  • Mark Z.

    “banks get their money from deposits.”

    Banks get their money by charging interest on loans.

  • AnonymousSam

    And stealing houses. <.<

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    banks get their money from both. They wouldn’t have money to loan out if they didn’t have deposits though.

    if anyone’s still reading this this book is incredible http://www.amazon.com/The-Pyramid-Ismail-Kadare/dp/1559703148

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    There is no way rich people’s spending can possibly match the spending done by 80%+ of the people in the USA. It’s just not going to happen. There’s actualy a simple back of the envelope calculation done by Ravi Batra that demonstrates this at the order-of-magnitude level.

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    neutrino- I should learn some keynesian economics at some point. I followed one on twitter for a while. You can’t imagine what  an ivory tower putz he was.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Yes, perhaps you should learn about the thing you keep criticizing, shouldn’t you?

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    For all who’re interested, I found the back of the envelope calculation Ravi Batra did.

    http://uploadhero.com/dl/wjJF1k1U

    The site’s apparently run by Anonymous as a replacement for MegaUpload. I assert fair use as a defence for the creation of the PDF of four pages of Batra’s book.

  • http://twitter.com/lesterhalfjr Chris Hadrick

    I doubt Krugman has read Human Action either.


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