Last 30 Comments

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  • Last 30 Comments

    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, Xetrov said:
      The actual unemployment rate exceeded 8% in February 2009. By October it has exceeded 10%. Which does nothing to disprove losing 3.4 million jobs after ObamaStimulus was signed, despite his promises to save those jobs by the passing of the Stimulus. However the plunge stopped in the second quarter of 2009 Yeah, not quite. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Job_losses_caused_by_the_Great_Recession January 2009 – 818,000 jobs lost February 2009 – 724,000 jobs lost March 2009 – 799,000 jobs lost April 2009 – 692,000 jobs lost May 2009 – 361,000 jobs lost June 2009 – 482,000 jobs lost July 2009 – 339,000 jobs lost August 2009 – 231,000 jobs lost September 2009 – 199,000 jobs lost October 2009 – 202,000 jobs lost November 2009 - 64,000 jobs created December 2009 - 109,000 jobs lost The CBO estimated 2.1 million jobs were saved in the last quarter of 2009 That the same CBO that has had to eat crow repeatedly on their Obamacare estimates? So if the famous chart that Obama touted around and talked about like it was the Gospel was not a promise to keep unemployment low if the Stimulus was passed, what was the purpose of it?
      Posted Apr 22, 2014
    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, Iconoclast said:
      The only thing I "advocate" is minimizing government meddling with the economy. It was government meddling that created the housing bubble and subsequent financial crisis in the first place. And sure, many "benefited" from the Stimulus -- those who were politically connected come to mind. Obviously somebody is going to benefit when millions of dollars are being handed out. But Joe Sixpack ain't one of them. And it doesn't help matters when Joe is looking for a job and hears Obama laughing it off. "Those 'shovel-ready' jobs weren't as 'shovel-ready' as I'd hoped (laugh)". And it doesn't help when the President is hosting Paul McCartney concerts in his back yard when Joe is pounding the pavement. "Try and save Joe's job". The point is, for millions of Joe's, IT DIDN'T. Oh sure, it may have saved Joe's BOSS' job, or Joe's boss' boss' job, the execs pulling down million-dollar bonuses and such, those who donated to the Democrat Party campaigns. But Joe didn't get much out of it. And it comes as no surprise that you say shit like, "But while the optimistic studies do, in fact, support the conclusion that the...
      Posted Apr 22, 2014
    • On At Least He’s Honest About It, Biggie G said:
      I have always thought that there are only 2 big picture ways of looking at taxes. 1, Taxes are a necessary levee on the populace to pay for the services and operation of the government. 2. Taxes are a way to get back at people who are doing better than you think they should. If you believe in 1, then at least we can have a discussion. The people who believe in 2 will always have an excuse for their hypocrisy.
      Posted Apr 22, 2014
    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, CM said:
      “Ivory Tower” implies detachment. What does it matter how 'detached' they are from your Joe Sixpack? Detachment is good if you're looking for objectivity. Using that term is hard-core partisan nonsense. Or is this another example of saying something that somehow doesn't mean what it implies......or is asking that just going to be dismissed as 'flotsam' again? I totally agree that the modelling method has potential flaws - as explained in that main WaPo link. But the non-modeling ones do as well ("econometric studies sometimes have to correct for the fact that harder-hit areas tend to get more stimulus spending. This says nothing about the stimulus’ effectiveness, but it can confuse attempts to evaluate that effectiveness statistically"). It also says: All of these studies have their own methods of overcoming the endogeneity problem, some of which are more effective than others. Whichever corrections one uses, however, one cannot run a perfect experiment with messy, real-world data, which necessarily limits what these studies can say. Of the five econometric studies detailed here, three conclude the stimulus had a significant positive effect, and two conclude it did not have much of an effect at all. Also: As the descriptions above make clear, none of the studies are...
      Posted Apr 21, 2014
    • On At Least He’s Honest About It, ReganT said:
      Whenever progressives complain about income inequality I usually offer this hypothetical situation. I have two pies, A and B. Pie B is twice as big as pie A. I cannot eat both pies—that's too much for me—so I decide that I will give some to a needy family. They can either have 1/2 of pie A or 1/3 of pie B. The kicker is that you get to decide which piece they will receive. How do you choose?
      Posted Apr 21, 2014
    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, Iconoclast said:
      "Ivory Tower academicians" "can cough up studies" Nice. Implyng they are flawed, when in fact they were published and presumably peer-reviewed. And they contain discussions about their own limitations. But no, because they don't reach the conclusions you like, you need to denigrate the people and their work. As always, you are free to read in whatever hard-core partisan nonsense you want to into what I actually say. "Ivory Tower" implies detachment. And yes, by carefully choosing your parameters, you can affect how your data is interpreted. That holds either way, for studies I "agree with" and those I don't. Which is why I don't place too much stock in "studies". When you get right down to it, "studies" can pretty much say whatever you want them to. And yes, the scientific enterprise is just as prone to politics and corruption as any other human endeavor. As I observed already, only three of the nine in the article provided a non-modeling positive conclusion. Four used modeling, which was discredited by an article I cited early on, and the remaining two used non-modeling methods to obtain a negative conclusion. So one can "cough up" studies to pretty...
      Posted Apr 21, 2014
    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, CM said:
      Obama signed it into law half-way through February, so I’ll spot him that. After February there were 3,478,000 jobs lost in 2009. The actual unemployment rate exceeded 8% in February 2009. By October it has exceeded 10%. However the plunge stopped in the second quarter of 2009 — just as the stimulus came on line. The CBO estimated 2.1 million jobs were saved in the last quarter of 2009, boosting the economy by up to 3.5 percent and lowering the unemployment rate by up to 2.1 percent To somehow try to minimize the promises that the administration made to get this shit sandwich passed vs. the actual results is disingenuous at best. Right, and I think minimising (or ignoring or dimissing) the body of research on the effect of the stimulus (which takes into account the economy) at the expense of attempting to imply that a promise was made and referring to a single graph (when we all know it relied on a projection of where the economy was going, and even where it would be when the stimulus was passed) is clearly extremely disingenuous. I guess we'll need to agree to disagree about which one is disingenuous. BTW was there third of the stimulus...
      Posted Apr 21, 2014
    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, CM said:
      Alex, you've clearly read nothing I've written about the minimum wage. As for "Wrong thing to focus on", that's yet another avoidance. No Joe simply listened to what all of the talking heads were saying to him on the six o’clock news. Of course the Ivory Tower academicians can cough up studies that show the stimulus had a “positive effect”, but that means nothing to Joe Sixpack, especially if he’s been unemployed for months on end and has all but given up looking for full-time work. "Ivory Tower academicians" "can cough up studies" Nice. Implyng they are flawed, when in fact they were published and presumably peer-reviewed. And they contain discussions about their own limitations. But no, because they don't reach the conclusions you like, you need to denigrate the people and their work. Such obvious partisan nonsense. Funny how you don't do that with studies that have outcomes you agree with. Again, if the concern is unemployment then what is the mechanisms or mechanism that would have stopped the plummeting unemployment? When would that have kicked in, and how? I am simply saying that, from Joe’s point of view, the perception that it didn’t work is valid. But you can "cough up" the Joe Sixpack...
      Posted Apr 21, 2014
    • On This is the sort of change he promised, Seattle Outcast said:
      Eventually it will get so bad that large groups of politicians will get voted out of office in favor of "reform"; I give the reformers a 50-50 chance of screwing it up even worse. However, unless they address the bureaucratic nightmare that they've created over the decades, any intended reform will run into serious roadblocks from the unions that will try to hold a gun to their heads.
      Posted Apr 21, 2014
    • On At Least He’s Honest About It, AlexInCT said:
      The disease is broken families, broken schools, a broken economy with a lack of opportunities and jobs to lift people up. The reason none of these is ever addressed, or even allowed to be mentioned as the reason things are bad, is because we can thank the left's ideology and the policies it produced for every single one of these. When you reward behavior you don't want, even if what you say you are doing is helping people that need help, expect more of it. Not less. It becomes an even bigger problem when you couple that with punishing success.
      Posted Apr 21, 2014
    • On At Least He’s Honest About It, Hal_10000 said:
      Margaret Thatcher had the proper measure of these pinheads 30 years ago; Man, I loved it when Thatcher did Minister's Questions. She was so awesome. And Rich, you make a great point. Addressing income or wealth inequality addressed the symptom not the disease. The disease is broken families, broken schools, a broken economy with a lack of opportunities and jobs to lift people up. This game is not about hitting the rich where it hurts, it is about keeping the riff-raff out of the evil rich country club. This is nothing but the elite leftists protecting their turf. Woe be the idiots that still are unable to see this for what it is. Bingo. I heard a lot of this in the 80's, how the "new rich" were ruining it for everyone. The biggest flaw in PIcketty's analysis is that he assumes the rich are just the rich, some amorphous blob. But class mobility is just as high now as it was fifty years ago. The difference is that people can climb higher than they used to.
      Posted Apr 21, 2014
    • On At Least He’s Honest About It, AlexInCT said:
      Let’s ignore that previous efforts to tax the evil stinking rich have often resulted in a game of rich person whack-a-mole where they just get income from different sources. You are making the same mistake all the class warriors that fall for this rhetoric do Hal: this isn't a tax on the evil stinking rich, but on the upstarts trying to get rich. Income tax almost never impacts the evil stinking rich (see Buffet for example), because they make it a point to have negligible income tied to a job. Their income is from investments and other such vehicles that allow them to often avoid taxation. That’s not accidental either, because these evil stinking rich, often politicians or politically connected, created this very system that allowed the evil stinking rich to avoid taxation while making sure they control the gates to the evil stinking rich country club. And speaking about Buffet: it should come to you as no surprise that he is one of the biggest proponents of that 90% death tax. That’s because one of his most profitable businesses is selling life insurance - to cover the taxes - to the evil stinking rich. Buffet isn’t alone in thinking there is...
      Posted Apr 21, 2014
    • On At Least He’s Honest About It, richtaylor365 said:
      Margaret Thatcher had the proper measure of these pinheads 30 years ago; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okHGCz6xxiw And amazingly (not really, it's all they got) they still sing the same weak assed song. It all comes down to their warped sense of fairness and their total ignorance of how the free market works. Punishing achievers will somehow make the slackers feel better about themselves, and keep voting for those that stick it to the rich. For all the bellyaching about corporate America, why don't clowns like Yglesias go after Hollywood, surely those folks got money to burn. No mention about that left handed reliever that works one day in five and makes $25 million a year, too bad the market dictates wages and not the easily offended sensibilities of progressive dopes. Would not these folks, those champions of the downtrodden, best serve their readers by addressing the root causes of poverty, and spotlight Obama's failed economic policies? Why do they think middle income wages has gone down, the worse job participation rate in 50 years, the highest levels of welfare receipients, food stamps, the greatest percentage of Americans under the poverty rate for earned income, and the high number of folks on government assistance............all under their boy's watch...
      Posted Apr 21, 2014
    • On At Least He’s Honest About It, Seattle Outcast said:
      What he argues is that this would stop corporations from paying such huge salaries and therefore pay more to lower level employees.</blockquote. Only if you held a gun to their head and forced them to do so, and most likely not even then. I assume he's upset that top corp execs get paid many millions of dollars while there are monkeys on the assembly line that are merely making six figure incomes with their union jobs, or that Walmart employs the bottom of the barrel for retail help, meaning that if these people could get jobs in fast food, they would have done so already. Before they stop paying CEOs so well, they need to repeal a few poorly thought thru laws making these people subject to prison sentences for the actions of other people. Also, the ability to run a major corporation isn't easy, and the number of people actually capable of doing it, even poorly, is actually quite small. Law of Supply and Demand is fully in force for this.
      Posted Apr 21, 2014
    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, Iconoclast said:
      You're clearly the one here trying to "score points". You're LITERALLY adding them up as you go. Wow. Yes, I am, against your arguments by noting that they're straw men (your denials notwithstanding). In marked contrast, your method amounted to a character assassination attempt. "Wow", indeed.
      Posted Apr 18, 2014
    • On Killing the goose that laid the golden egg, RonK said:
      the problem with the "how well off the US was with a 90% tax rate" is they forget or ignore the fact everyone paid taxes, their retort is usually well they pay the payroll taxes, my answer to that is do they??, bet they get money back from their taxes that would be equivalent to the "payroll taxes" they, not only that but they will get way more back then they pay in from social security and medicare benefits.
      Posted Apr 18, 2014
    • On Killing the goose that laid the golden egg, Seattle Outcast said:
      Cue CM to come here with his standard idiocy of "how well off the US was with a 90% tax rate"...
      Posted Apr 18, 2014
    • On Totes Not A Democracy, AlexInCT said:
      Pretty much all of human history can be shown as being like this – there are always a minority that holds the most influence/power over the rest. What do you think that pile of shit Engels and Marx put out was about? And the Russian Chinese, North Korean, Cuban, or Venezuelan, revolutions (to name a few)? What do you think the democratic party’s class warfare rhetoric is all about? The more things change, the more they stay the same. Our forefathers created a republic and distanced themselves from the very systems that produced these oligarchies, hoping it would be real hard for any such oligarchy to entrench itself and massively abuse the people, because they saw their inherent evil nature and what it had done to the other nations out there. Now the left, while pretending to be doing it to help the disenfranchised from some other oligarchy they label the bad guys (the Koch brothers!), has given us the most well entrenched oligarchy we have ever had, and it is on the verge of destroying the prosperity of this nation. And I am sure this study you cite Hal was concluding that what we need was more of what helps the left's...
      Posted Apr 18, 2014
    • On Totes Not A Democracy, Seattle Outcast said:
      How about one that isn't really all the benevolent, but kinda pissed off and willing to make an example out of assholes.....with nukes....? Just saying, that I'd take that job.......
      Posted Apr 18, 2014
    • On Totes Not A Democracy, Hal_10000 said:
      yep. This week it's "we should follow the will of people!". Next week, they'll be back to "we need a benevolent dictator."
      Posted Apr 18, 2014
    • On Totes Not A Democracy, Seattle Outcast said:
      Pretty much all of human history can be shown as being like this - there are always a minority that holds the most influence/power over the rest. What your garden variety leftist won't want to admit is that this also true for every version of collectivism that has been tried.
      Posted Apr 18, 2014
    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, Seattle Outcast said:
      I'll take exception to the thought that these debt can't ever be repaid - there is a time tested method for getting a government out of deep, unthinkable dept that has been performed repeatedly. You simply devalue the currency and pay it off pennies on the dollar. Sure, it screws over the little guy, but you can always blame it on someone else - and if people don't play along, just make ownership of bullion illegal like FDR did......
      Posted Apr 17, 2014
    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, Xetrov said:
      Obama trying to get the Stimulus passed - Millions more Americans will lose their jobs. Homes will be lost. Families will go without health care. Our crippling dependence on foreign oil will continue. That is the price of inaction. ... I believe that legislation of this enormous magnitude, that by necessity we are moving quickly — we’re not moving quickly because we’re trying to jamb something down people’s throats. We’re moving quickly because we’re told that if we don’t move quickly, that the economy is going keep on getting worse, and we’ll have another 2 or 3 or 4 million jobs loss this year. Obama signed it into law half-way through February, so I'll spot him that. After February there were 3,478,000 jobs lost in 2009. To somehow try to minimize the promises that the administration made to get this shit sandwich passed vs. the actual results is disingenuous at best.
      Posted Apr 17, 2014
    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, Iconoclast said:
      You cannot be serious in suggesting that you believed that the graph showing what might happen was 'fact'. Come on now, that's just silliness. Yes, it is silliness, on your part. I have yet to actually use the word "fact" in this thread at all, and only implied the use of the term when I replied "Sure seemed that way at the time." when you asked, "Are you trying to tell me that they sold it as 'fact', rather than a best guess...?" Try to get it into your head that I am talking about general perceptions. Joe Sixpack isn't a politics wonk, and probably never read the report or looked at the graph. No Joe simply listened to what all of the talking heads were saying to him on the six o'clock news. Of course the Ivory Tower academicians can cough up studies that show the stimulus had a "positive effect", but that means nothing to Joe Sixpack, especially if he's been unemployed for months on end and has all but given up looking for full-time work. As for me, I am already on record as saying we simply cannot know whether it "worked". I am simply...
      Posted Apr 17, 2014
    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, AlexInCT said:
      Thanks for all the Friedman stuff. I went to the link and read the whole thing. I don’t see anything in there that explains how the US government doing nothing during the recent GFC would have been better for employment Not surprised. If you can't see why raising the minimum wage will kill exactly the kind of starting jobs most young people need, or help drive manufacturing offshore, or incentivize businesses that can automate to do that instead of paying unskilled labor what they are not worth, or how something like Obamacare will destroy the incentive of small businesses to stay in business or grow, all key things that impact economic growth and job creation (negatively), I am not surprised you remain unconvinced that government spending is the key to things. Me, I am now convinced that had there been no stimulus or "too big to fail" bailouts, but more importantly, no Dodd-Frank or Obamacare, that things would have temporarily gotten hard, but that in a very short term the economy would have rebound. See the Savings & Loans crisis in the 80s. Instead we got more FDR after the 1929 crash, so we will have negative economic growth while racking up...
      Posted Apr 17, 2014
    • On When I say this model is unsustainable.., AlexInCT said:
      Uhh you realize that there are people on both lists, right? eg: Households with full time workers who also have people on SSI. I do, but that doesn't take away from the fact that as a simple function of numbers there are more takers than makers, hist_ed. That you have some people working and some mooching, whatever the dynamic that allows that to exist may be, you can even argue that in a house with one or more full time workers in your scenario, the takers are just getting back what the others are making. The thing is that, to me, that's a specious argument. And distinguish between those that are collecting what they paid into like Social Security or Medicare and are entitled to be collecting that, and those that are just sucking at the government's teat. The fact of the matter is that the people we have in charge right now are obsessively focused on how to split the ever shrinking pie (social jutice!), which is shrinking because of what they are doing I want to stress, instead of making sure there is so much pie that we don't really need to worry about that split so much. The fact...
      Posted Apr 17, 2014
    • On When I say this model is unsustainable.., Seattle Outcast said:
      Did they supply any Venn diagrams?
      Posted Apr 16, 2014
    • On Asymmetric Arrogance, CM said:
      Thanks for all the Friedman stuff. I went to the link and read the whole thing. I don't see anything in there that explains how the US government doing nothing during the recent GFC would have been better for employment. It doesn't describe the specific mechanism(s) which would have stopped the plummeting unemployment rate, or provide any indication of where it have ended up at. Nor does it deal with the wide-ranging deep effects of having a much much larger group of people unemployed for a lot longer. As I said, nobody seems to be able to explain it beyond simple ideology. I want to see a projection of what would have happened and an explanation of why/how. Rather than just simple ideology coupled with a criticism of the people that do attempt to some projection.
      Posted Apr 16, 2014
    • On When I say this model is unsustainable.., hist_ed said:
      Uhh you realize that there are people on both lists, right? eg: Households with full time workers who also have people on SSI.
      Posted Apr 16, 2014
    • On When I say this model is unsustainable.., Seattle Outcast said:
      A more appropriate ratio should start at around 99:1 and then progress to even a smaller percentage of government employees due to automation and other efficiency improvements.
      Posted Apr 16, 2014

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