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151  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / A proposal to reform the taxation of corporate income, AEI, Vaird, Toder on: June 21, 2017, 09:22:59 AM
A proposal to reform the taxation of corporate income

Alan D. Viard, Eric Toder

"This report updates and revises the authors’ 2014 proposal to replace the corporate income tax with taxation at ordinary income rates of dividends and net accrued capital gains of American shareholders. The new proposal retains a 15 percent corporate income tax, gives taxable shareholders a credit for corporate taxes paid, imposes a 15 percent tax on interest income of non-profits and retirement plans, and addresses stock price volatility and shifts between private and publicly-traded status. The reform encourages domestic investment and sharply reduces incentives for corporate inversions. It is approximately revenue neutral and makes the tax system more progressive."
152  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Tax Policy, not even on the calendar until September? on: June 21, 2017, 08:50:42 AM
House speaker, Trump aides vow tax reform by end of 2017

"The goal is to get tax legislation to the floor of Congress during the first two weeks of September, Trump economic adviser Gary Cohn told technology industry representatives at the White House."

Good grief.

I wonder if anyone has told them 2018 is an election year where sitting on their asses while Rome burns will be be a topic.  Put off the most important reforms, what could possibly go wrong?
153  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Soros cynical about Mc Cain most likely on: June 21, 2017, 08:22:56 AM
"McCain funded by Soros?"
I saw this too and am surprised.
From everything we have read about Soros it is not likely it is because Soros thinks of McCain as a hero or great American
It is because he thinks of him as a useful idiot!
Which he often is!   

I can only think that to Soros, the alternative to McCain would be a more tea party like Republican challenger.

Soros money didn't successfully buy the Georgia election.   )
154  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Dicey Flynn stuff on: June 21, 2017, 08:18:43 AM

I'm unpersuaded, can't get over a skepticism of sources.  So much else of what they've written has turned out to be false or misleading.  What I'm hearing is that the previous administration admits eavesdropping on the incoming administration and is trying to take them down one person at a time.

Flynn took fees he didn't disclose.  Probably a fraction of 'fees' that went to the Clinton machine over the decades.  Flynn lost his job.  Yates was a partisan.  What is the conspiracy?  What is the unnamed blackmail material?  Are these different anonymously sources close to the administrations that were wrong the last ten times?  Of course they discuss lifting sanctions; it's the issue of the day to the Russians and how we save face for letting them occupy sovereign countries without consequence.  Why is this a story in June?  NYT is concerned that a CIA director won't tell the press and the world what he tells the President, as CIA Directors never have.
155  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Tesla battery production releases hellacious amounts of CO2 on: June 21, 2017, 07:58:21 AM

Partially challenged by this:

Also see:

'World's quickest car', the Tesla I drove is not any kind of economy car:
All wheel drive cornering and 15-85mph acceleration in about 2 seconds, it's more like a ride at the fair.  Amazing software control of everything from self drive mode to the charging of the battery.  You buy this car because you like that sort of thing.  Don't buy it save energy or to eliminate emissions because it doesn't.  The Nissan Leaf is more comparable to a conventional car. 

The CO2 factor depends on how we power our grid, in manufacturing and for charging.  Powering via electricity is not cleaner when the marginal unit of energy is produced with the same fossil fuels.

Tesla is building all-solar charging stations, and for early, buyers, usage is free.  But real charging happens at home and at work on the mix of the local grid.  In most places, if you add any usage and especially night time usage, the extra energy will come from fossil fuels, coal or natural gas.  Besides expensive and relatively low capacity, solar and wind are not very reliable at night.

We should build nuclear capacity to power the grid if we want a shift of transportation to electric and be carbon free.  Otherwise run the cars directly on natural gas. 

Sourcewatch should do a source watch report on themselves.  What a one-sided, ad hominem attack that was.
156  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Weed killer False Round up cancer scare on: June 20, 2017, 11:52:20 AM
The World Health Organization's cancer agency says a common weedkiller is "probably carcinogenic." The scientist leading that review knew of fresh data showing no cancer link - but he never mentioned it and the agency did not take it into account.
157  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: JW: NSC buries Susan Rice unmasking materials at Obama Library on: June 20, 2017, 10:54:26 AM
Judicial Watch today announced that the National Security Council (NSC) on May 23, 2017, informed it by letter that the materials regarding the unmasking by Obama National Security Advisor Susan Rice of “the identities of any U.S. citizens associated with the Trump presidential campaign or transition team” have been removed to the Obama Library. The NSC will ***not*** fulfill a Judicial Watch request for records regarding information relating to people “who were identified pursuant to intelligence collection activities.” Specifically, the NSC told Judicial Watch: 'Documents from the Obama administration have been transferred to the Barack Obama Presidential Library. You may send your request to the Obama Library. However, you should be aware that under the Presidential Records Act, Presidential records remain closed to the public for five years after an administration has left office.' Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said: “Prosecutors, Congress, and the public will want to know when the National Security Council shipped off the records about potential intelligence abuses by the Susan Rice and others in the Obama White House to the memory hole of the Obama Presidential Library. We are considering our legal options but we hope that the Special Counsel and Congress also consider their options and get these records.”

"We are considering our legal options but we hope that the Special Counsel and Congress also consider their options and get these records.”

Is it a library or a document burial ground?  This is evidence in a criminal investigation.  I would hope the SC already has that - or should be fired for incompetence.
158  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Sen. Bernie Sanders on Face the Nation June 18 2017 on: June 19, 2017, 07:09:41 PM
Someone should ANSWER this drivel, point by point...

1) He states flawed projections as facts.  Then he repeats them as facts.

2) He is a science denier.  The science is economics.  People respond to incentives and disincentives. They deny it.  

3)  He is a denier of economic history.  What he states as fact just isn't so.  Not accurate anywhere at anytime across the globe or throughout history.

4)  His policies aren't new; they lead to disaster every time they are tried.  The further you go Sanders / Warrenomics, then worse the disaster.  See VenezChavezuela.

DICKERSON: Joining us now is Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. He is in Burlington.

Senator Sanders, I want to start with this week's shooting.  In talking to Senator Rubio, he said obviously this was -- the man who did the shooting is responsible for his own actions. But in the wake of that, in this conversation about what leads to the heated political atmosphere, Senator Sanders -- Senator Rubio pointed out, he said that when people try to stop free speech, stop people from talking, it creates pressure in the system that might cause people to act out.  What do you think of that theory?
[Not even a mention that the shooter was a follower of Bernie.]

SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I), VERMONT: I think he is right.

Look, freedom of speech, the right to dissent, the right to protest, that is what America is about. And, politically, every leader in this country, every American has got to stand up against any form of violence. That is unacceptable.

And I certainly hope and pray that Representative Scalise has a full recovery from the tragedy that took place this week.  [Tragedy? Like a natural catastrophe? Or was it a criminal act?]

DICKERSON: There's been a lot of protests on campuses when people come to speak. They have been -- people have protested and said they shouldn't be allowed to speak.
 Where do you come down on that in the context of this pressure on free speech?

SANDERS: I think people have a right to speak. And you have a right, if you are on a college campus not to attend. You have a right to ask hard questions about the speaker if you disagree with him or her.  But what -- why should we be afraid of somebody coming on a campus or anyplace else and speaking? You have a right to protest. But I don't quite understand why anybody thinks it is a good idea to deny somebody else the right to express his or her point of view.
[First two points true and valid, makes you think he is a reasonable guy- even though his angry articulation of false analysis inspired the hate thoughts if not the violence of the assassin who shot up a field full of Sanders' political opponents.]

I think, John, what is very clear is, we are in a contentious and difficult political moment in our country's history. I have very grave concerns about the Trump agenda right now. We will -- we are looking -- we are not looking.

There is a health care proposal in the Senate [NO THERE ISN'T] which nobody has seen yet. But the proposal that passed the House, as you know, would throw 23 million Americans off of health insurance. I mean that, to me, is just incredible.
[Not even an opinion but repetition of a false claim, without giving credit to its source or including the time frame.  He adds "AS YOU KNOW" to a statement that is patently false.  Obamacare is losing enrollees at a faster rate than that without repeal/replace.]

It would raise premiums very significantly for older workers.  [The removal of the requirement for young people to pay for the care of old people is "raising premiums for older workers'.  With that logic you can reform NOTHING.] It would defend (de-fund) Planned Parenthood and deny two-and-a-half million women the right to get the health care that they want, cut Medicaid by over $800 billion.
[Planned Parenthood is a human slaughterhouse with an abortion to adoption ratio of 149 to 1.  Medicaid has never been cut since its inception.  The bill gives people freer choices, not denial of rights.  The man has no shame.]

You know, we -- I and I would say the vast majority of the American people have strong disagreements with that approach. But you don't have to be violent about it. Let's disagree openly and honestly [deceptively and vehemently], but violence is [the result] not acceptable.  [The violence was incited by his own hate speech if you apply logic of the left  to the left.  Class WARFARE is still his operative theme while his political opponent is still in surgery.]

DICKERSON: I want to get to the details of the health care plan in a moment, or the details you don't know at the moment.  But let me just -- staying on this question here, is anything going to change in the wake of this in Washington, at least in the way lawmakers deal with each other? And is there something that should change?

SANDERS: I think, you know, what -- and, again, where this is such a strange moment is, we are looking at a lot of dishonest news that comes across, where people are lying outrageously about other people.  [Like Sanders just did.]

And I hope that folks on all sides could say, look, I disagree with him or her, but that is an outrageous lie. But let us, on the other hand, be frank, is, there are real differences of opinions that exist in Congress.

It is not like -- you know, you mentioned Marco Rubio. I like Marco Rubio. But we disagree on issues. And people should understand, it is not that there is all kinds of hatred. [He spews hatred right in this interview.  What is class warfare without hatred?] There's a -- in the Congress, there is a fundamental disagreement.

President Trump made a -- brought forth a budget which will go nowhere, but this is a budget that over a 10-year period would give $3 trillion in tax breaks [static analysis] to the top 1 percent, the very wealthiest families in America [hate and blame that group!], while making massive cuts in education [false], into health care [false], in nutrition programs[false], really devastate working class of this country[false].  [His policies are what devastate the working "class".  See any place that implemented them.]

I disagree with that. But, obviously, that debate has got to be played out based on the facts, and let's debate it.
[He disagrees with his own false assessment - or did that come out wrong?]

DICKERSON: Let me move here now to health care.

You mentioned some of the policy differences, but there is a procedural debate going on about how this is being handled in the Senate. Some Democrats are suggesting, because the -- because you don't know what is in the bill and the bill is being worked on in secret, to just stop all Senate business, to just shut the place down as a way to kind of force play.

Are you on board with that?  [See if he answers the question...]

SANDERS: John, here is the situation.

We know the legislation that passed the House. It was the worst piece of legislation, frankly, against working-class people that I can remember in my political life in the Congress. Throwing 23 million people off of health insurance is beyond belief.

Now, in the Senate, what you have is you have, I believe it is 10 Republicans working behind closed doors [NO DEMOCRATS AGREED TO WORK ON THIS BILL!] to address one-sixth of the American economy.  That is what health care is.  [Trying to reverse a failed government takeover of 1/6th of the economy as the voters asked them to do.]

Republicans, the average Republican doesn't even know what is in that legislation. My understanding is that it will be brought forth just immediately before we have to vote on it.
[His colleague just assured him it wouldn't be.  Is Sen. Rubio a liar?]
This is completely unacceptable [The way Obamacare was passed, "you have to pass it to see what's in it".] I mean, nobody can defend a process which will impact tens of millions of Americans, and nobody even knows what is in the legislation. [False. There is no Senate proposal at this time.]  And, John, the important point here is the reason they don't want to bring it public is because it is a disastrous bill, I suspect similar to what passed in the House.  [Crafting legislation behind closed doors is far from new, see Hillarycare, Obamacare.  Just raw, political mudslinging. Inciting violence against his colleagues?]

Who is going to defend cutting Medicaid by $800 billion at the same time as you give massive tax breaks to the wealthiest 2 percent? [Two false points then make a false comparison.] So, they want to keep it secret. [No, they want to bring it out in the open and pass it.]  They don't want the media involved. ["Think of them as Democratic operatives with bylines."] They don't want members of Congress involved. And at the last minute, they present it, they push it through, and that is one-sixth of the American economy and millions of people thrown off the health insurance. [False, false, false and false.]

That is unacceptable. I believe Democrats should do everything they can to oppose that legislation in any way that we can.  [Ends justify means, while his colleague is in critical condition??!!]

To the left of Bernie (or more open and honest than him) are people who want to tax the upper income at 99%.  Seriously!  Why do we not take all of their income?  Why is $100/hr minimum wage not better than $15?  Why don't they admit what they know would go wrong with their own proposals?  Which type of tax code brings in the most revenue to the Treasury, one that stomps out economic activity or one that fosters growth?  But the agenda of socialist is not to grow the economy or to alleviate poverty.  Their goal is transformation.  Or just perpetual class warfare.  If we enacted all of their taxes and programs (as we have), they would then want - more taxes and more programs.
159  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Government regulations, 4 Principles for Reforming Dodd Frank on: June 19, 2017, 12:13:07 PM
Good article on an important topic.  The idea of reforming taxes and regulations barely makes the news but would change the world.
First, effective regulation must address incentives. Banks and financial firms want to avoid regulatory costs. Regulators tend toward what’s politically expedient. Good rules take this into account. For instance, using market-based measures of risk and capital alongside accounting measures would make regulatory arbitrage less likely.

Second, consumer protections should help people make informed choices instead of attempting to dictate choices with prohibitive rules.

Third, macroprudential policy should focus first and foremost on real-estate risk, especially where subsidized and promoted by the government. The primary threat to financial stability remains subsidized risk-taking in the mortgage market, which is growing once again to worrying levels.

Fourth, regulation should conform to the rule of law—which means ending the reliance on “guidance” and the delegation of excessive discretionary authority to politicized actors such as the FSOC and the CFPB. Financial rules and their enforcement must be transparent, so that regulators are accountable to the public.
Author: Charles Calomiris is a professor of finance at Columbia Business School, the author of “Reforming Financial Regulation After Dodd-Frank,” out last month from the Manhattan Institute.
160  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Unexpectedly! Restaurant and restaurant jobs "DIE OFF" on: June 17, 2017, 06:42:05 PM

Restaurant die-off is first course of California’s $15 minimum wage

In a pair of affluent coastal California counties, the canary in the mineshaft has gotten splayed, spatchcocked and plated over a bed of unintended consequences, garnished with sprigs of locally sourced economic distortion and non-GMO, “What the heck were they thinking?”

The result of one early experiment in a citywide $15 minimum wage is an ominous sign for the state’s poorer inland counties as the statewide wage floor creeps toward the mark.

Consider San Francisco, an early adopter of the $15 wage. It’s now experiencing a restaurant die-off, minting jobless hash-slingers, cashiers, busboys, scullery engineers and line cooks as they get pink-slipped in increasing numbers. And the wage there hasn’t yet hit $15.


As the East Bay Times reported in January, at least 60 restaurants around the Bay Area had closed since September alone.

A recent study by Michael Luca at Harvard Business School and Dara Lee Luca at Mathematica Policy Research found that every $1 hike in the minimum wage brings a 14 percent increase in the likelihood of a 3.5-star restaurant on Yelp! closing.

Another telltale is San Diego, where voters approved increasing the city’s minimum wage to $11.50 per hour from $10.50, this after the minimum wage was increased from $8 an hour in 2015 – meaning hourly costs have risen 43 percent in two years.

The cost increases have pushed San Diego restaurants to the brink, Stephen Zolezzi, president of the Food and Beverage Association of San Diego County, told the San Diego Business Journal. Watch for the next mass die-off there.

But what of California’s less affluent inland counties? How will they fare?

Christopher Thornberg, director of UC Riverside’s Center for Economic Forecasting and Development, told the San Bernardino Sun that politicians should have adopted a regional approach. He said it would been better to adapt minimum-wage levels to varying economies – something like the Oregon model, the nation’s first multi-tiered minimum-wage strategy.

Oregon’s minimum-wage law is phased, with increases over six years. By 2022, the minimum will be $14.75 an hour in Portland, $13.50 in midsize counties and $12.50 in rural areas.

“That makes sense,” Thornberg told the Sun. “That’s logical.”

California is even more varied economically than Oregon. Thornberg believes hiking wages in blanket fashion will spark layoffs and edge low-skilled workers out of the job market.

In the Central Valley, wages for all workers, on average, are lower than those of the coastal counties.

U.S. Census Bureau data show about 21 percent of workers in Bakersfield earned from $8 to $12 per hour in 2015, the most recent year for which data was available. In Fresno, 32 percent of workers were in that wage group, and in Modesto about 25 percent. Contrast that with Santa Clara County, home of Silicon Valley, which registered only 12.5 percent at that level.

The state’s diverse unemployment rates tell a similar tale. Unemployment in Bakersfield was 9.5 percent; 8.8 percent in Fresno, and Stanislaus County notched 7.9 percent. Compare that to Silicon Valley’s unemployment rate – 3.2 percent

“Part of our whole concern with (the $15 wage) is it’s a one-size-fits-all,” Rob Lapsley, president of the California Business Roundtable, told The Sacramento Bee last year. “Areas with double-digit unemployment, this is scaring them to death.”

Jamil Dada, chairman of the Riverside County Workforce Development Board, told the Sun that he believed the state’s Inland Empire will be hit harder than other parts of the state.

“It might be tolerable in the coastal regions,” he said. “Their business environment is completely different.”

As politicians insert their sausage fingers into subtle market mechanisms, scarcity and unintended consequences will ensue.

Joining San Francisco’s restaurant die-off was rising star AQ, which in 2012 was named a James Beard Award finalist for the best new restaurant in America. The restaurant’s profit margins went from a reported 8.5 percent in 2012 to 1.5 percent by 2015. Most restaurants are thought to require margins of 3 and 5 percent.

If what’s happening with one early adopter of the $15 wage progression is any indication, locally famous inland hash houses and burger joints from Calexico to the Cow Counties will disappear as mandated wages climb to $15 statewide. And that will only be the start of things.

Jeremy Bagott, a former journalist, writes about California finance and land-use issues. He wrote this for The Modesto Bee.

“Economically, minimum wages may not make sense,” the governor said. “But morally and socially and politically they make every sense"
  - Gov. Jerry Brown

It makes moral, social and political sense to do the wrong thing economically and hurt businesses and workers?

Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders can't figure out why Democrats are losing elections outside of Vermont and California.
161  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Sweden now has thousands of radical Islamists on: June 17, 2017, 08:09:38 AM
Up from an estimate of 200 in 2010, growing 10-fold in 7 years according to security agency SAPO.  What could possibly go wrong.
162  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: social justice wars , SJW warriors, Protesters shut down 1-94 in St Paul on: June 16, 2017, 11:36:06 PM
Officer Yanez acquitted.  Juror said prosecution didn't prove it's case.  1000 to 2000 on freeway.  Crowd diminishing down to those who want arrest or confrontation.  Details (riots?) to follow.  Peaceful so far.  Law enforcement being patient.

Signs say, 'no justice, no peace', fuck the police', 'hands up, don't shoot.


These protests already cost St Paul taxpayers over $1 million - before tonight.
163  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Michael Yon on: June 15, 2017, 05:55:52 PM
164  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Vast Left Wing Conspiracy, Sedition, and Treason? on: June 14, 2017, 12:50:50 PM
This is an exact, mirror image of what the left told us would happen if Trump did not accept the result of the election.
165  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Denver moves to end the war on public sh*tting! on: June 13, 2017, 03:20:50 PM

This is serious business.  Is the city or country now in charge of restrooms - as a right?

I watched an inner city McDonalds security guard refuse restroom access to a youth where it is clearly marked no use without purchase and the kid had no money.  I felt sorry for the kid.  One could only guess what was going to happen next, out back.

Forgive the bad analogy but with pets in parks at least the cities normally require the mess to be scooped up and disposed.  Can we require that with human migrants?  I doubt it.  We don't even enforce littering laws.

And how do they squat and drop trow without breaking public exposure laws?  Those laws go next?
166  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / 2 million Obamacare cancellations in 2017 on: June 13, 2017, 12:41:25 PM
Dropping at a rate of 4 million per year.  Dropping faster left in place than CBO predicted under repeal.
167  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Villagers who voted "No" forced to leave homes on: June 13, 2017, 11:45:17 AM
"Villagers who voted 'No' in referendum forced to leave home"
168  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Economics, two visions, one cures poverty, the other doesn't on: June 13, 2017, 11:36:49 AM
Written from a political perspective but quite telling about how things work economically.

The Democrats' New Economic Agenda Will Solidify Their Minority Status
By John Tamny
June 12, 2017
 The Democrats' New Economic Agenda Will Solidify Their Minority Status
In a column from December of 2015, the Wall Street Journal’s Mary O’Grady unveiled a rather inconvenient fact that poverty warriors on the American left and right would perhaps prefer remain hidden: from 1980 to 2000, when the U.S. economy boomed, the number of Mexican arrivals into the U.S. grew from 2.2 million in 1980 to 9.4 million in 2000. The previous number is a clear market signal that the U.S. is where poverty has always been cured, as opposed to a condition that requires specific U.S. policy fixes.

O’Grady’s statistics came to mind while reading a recent New York Times column by Jared Bernstein, a senior fellow at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. He writes that a “highly progressive agenda [from Democratic scholars and politicians] has been coming together in recent months, one with the potential to unite both the Hillary and Bernie wings of the party, to go beyond both Clintonomics and Obamanomics.” The problem is that the agenda that's got Bernstein so giddy has nothing to do with the very economic growth that is always the source of rising economic opportunity for the poor, middle and rich.

Up front, Bernstein expresses excitement about a $190 billion (annually) program that he describes as a “universal child allowance.” The allowance would amount to annual federal checks sent to low-income families of $3,000/child. It all sounds so compassionate on its face to those who think it kind for Congress to spend the money of others, but given a second look even the progressive and hysterical might understand that economic opportunity never springs from a forcible shift of money from one pocket to another. If it were, theft would be both legal and encouraged.

The very economic growth in the U.S. that has long proven a magnet for the world’s poorest springs not from wealth redistribution, but instead from precious capital being matched with entrepreneurs eager to transform ideas into reality. Just as the U.S. economy wouldn’t advance if Americans with odd-numbered addresses stealthily 'lifted' $3,000 each from those with even-numbered addresses, neither will it grow if the federal government is the one taking from some, only to give to others. Economic progress always and everywhere springs from investment, yet Bernstein is arguing with a straight face that the U.S.’s poorest will be better off if the feds extract $190 billion of precious capital from the investment pool. As readers can probably imagine, he doesn’t stop there.

Interesting is that Bernstein’s next naïve suggestion involves “direct job creation policies, meaning either jobs created by the government or publicly subsidized private employment.” Ok, but all jobs are a function of private wealth creation as Bernstein unwittingly acknowledges given his call for resource extraction from the private sector in order to create them. This begs the obvious question why economic opportunity would be enhanced if the entrepreneurial and business sectors had less in the way of funds to innovate with. But that’s exactly what Bernstein is seeking through his $190 billion “universal child allowance,” not to mention his call for more “jobs created by the government.” Stating what’s obvious even to Bernstein, government can’t create any work absent private sector wealth, so why not leave precious resources in the hands of the true wealth creators? Precisely because they’re wealth focused, funds kept in their control will be invested in ways that foster much greater opportunity than can politicians consuming wealth created by others.

Still, Bernstein plainly can’t see just how contradictory his proposals are; proposals that explicitly acknowledge where all opportunity emerges from. Instead, he calls for more government programs. Specifically, he’s proposing a $1 trillion expansion of the “earned-income tax credit” meant to pay Americans to go to work. As he suggests, the $1 trillion of funds extracted from the productive parts of the economy would lead to family of four tax credits of $6,000 in place of the “current benefit of about $2,000.” Ok, but what goes unexplained here is why we need to pay those residing in the U.S. to work in the first place.

What gives life to the above question is the previously mentioned influx of Mexican strivers into the U.S. during the U.S. boom of the 80s and 90s. What the latter indicated rather clearly is that economic growth itself is the greatest enemy poverty has ever known. It also indicated that work is available to those who seek it, and even better, the work available is quite a bit more remunerative than one could find anywhere else in the world. Rest assured that the U.S. hasn’t historically experienced beautiful floods of immigration because opportunity stateside was limited. People come here because the U.S. is once again the country in which the impoverished can gradually erase their poverty thanks to abundant work opportunities. If Mexicans who frequently don’t speak English can improve their economic situations in the U.S., why on earth would the political class pay natives who do speak the language to pursue the very work that is the envy of much of the rest of the world? Put rather simply, those who require payment above and beyond their wage to get up and go in the morning have problems that have nothing to do with a lack of work, and everything to do with a lack of initiative. Importantly, handouts from Washington logically won’t fix what is a problem of limp ambition. At best, they'll exacerbate what Bernstein claims to want to fix.

Most comical is Bernstein’s assertion that the tax credits will allegedly mitigate “the damage done to low- and moderate-wage earners by the forces of inequality that have steered growth away from them” in modern times. What could he possibly mean? The U.S. has long been very unequal economically, yet the world's poorest have consistently risked their lives to get here precisely because wealth gaps most correlate with opportunity. Translated, investment abundantly flows to societies where individuals are free to pursue what most elevates their talents (yes, pursuit of what makes them unequal), and with investment comes work options for a growing number. Doubters need only travel to Seattle and Silicon Valley, where the world's five most valuable companies are headquartered, to see up close why the latter is true.

Similarly glossed over by this rather confused economist is that rising inequality is the surest sign of a shrinking lifestyle inequality between the rich and poor. We work in order to get, and thanks to rich entrepreneurs more and more Americans have instant access at incessantly falling prices to the computers, mobile phones, televisions, clothing and food that were once solely the preserve of the rich. Just once it would be nice if Bernstein and the other class warriors he runs with would explain how individual achievement that leads to wealth harms those who aren’t rich. What he would find were he to replace emotion with rationality is that in capitalist societies, people generally get rich by virtue of producing abundance for everyone. In short, we need more inequality, not less, if the goal is to improve the living standards of those who presently earn less.

Remarkably, Bernstein describes the ideas presented as “bold” and “progressive,” but in truth, they’re the same lame-brained policies of redistribution that the left have been promoting for decades. And as they’re anti-capital formation by Bernstein’s very own admission, they’re also inimical to the very prosperity that has long made the U.S. the country where poverty is cured. To be clear, if this is the best the Democrats have, they’ll long remain in the minority.

John Tamny is editor of RealClearMarkets, a Senior Fellow in Economics at Reason Foundation, and a senior economic adviser to Toreador Research and Trading ( He's the author of Who Needs the Fed? (Encounter Books, 2016), along with Popular Economics(Regnery, 2015)
169  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Russian hack, breached 39 states on: June 13, 2017, 11:11:14 AM
We are a long way into this story without knowing what the Russians actually hacked, stole or changed.  This article in Bloomberg goes a long way to specifying that.

Not mentioned is that this has nothing to do with Trump or Republicans and that the entire breach of internet happened under the watch of his bumbling predecessor.

The DNC was hacked.  RNC security held up to the outside threats.  Podesta fell for a phishing expedition.  Kellyanne Conway did not.

Elections are about vision and competence.  The Dems on attack keep showing neither.
170  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Health,, longevity, ("Die Less Often" tm) Recognize drowning! on: June 12, 2017, 01:13:59 PM
Drowning is almost always a deceptively quiet event.

No. 2 cause of accidental death in children, ages 15 and under

“Except in rare circumstances, drowning people are physiologically unable to call out for help. The respiratory system was designed for breathing. Speech is the secondary or overlaid function. Breathing must be fulfilled before speech occurs.

Drowning people’s mouths alternately sink below and reappear above the surface of the water. The mouths of drowning people are not above the surface of the water long enough for them to exhale, inhale, and call out for help. When the drowning people’s mouths are above the surface, they exhale and inhale quickly as their mouths start to sink below the surface of the water.

Drowning people cannot wave for help. Nature instinctively forces them to extend their arms laterally and press down on the water’s surface. Pressing down on the surface of the water permits drowning people to leverage their bodies so they can lift their mouths out of the water to breathe.
Throughout the Instinctive Drowning Response, drowning people cannot voluntarily control their arm movements. Physiologically, drowning people who are struggling on the surface of the water cannot stop drowning and perform voluntary movements such as waving for help, moving toward a rescuer, or reaching out for a piece of rescue equipment.

From beginning to end of the Instinctive Drowning Response people’s bodies remain upright in the water, with no evidence of a supporting kick. Unless rescued by a trained lifeguard, these drowning people can only struggle on the surface of the water from 20 to 60 seconds before submersion occurs."
171  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The US Congress, do-nothing? on: June 12, 2017, 12:49:19 PM
Has anyone heard whether or not the Senate has passed Healthcare reform today?  Has either chamber has passed tax reform yet?
We are supposed to care which party name has majorities in Congress governing us with Democrat tax, spend and over-regulate us policies.
This is not rocket science.
The problem is the republicans are mostly the republican wing of the democrat party.

They are fast losing the support of those (fools) among us who thought they meant it - repeal O'Care, reform taxes, build a wall, reform entitlements, etc.   They lose the right without gaining the left, the center or the media adoration and therefore will lose elections.  Like Trump finally got right on the Paris 'treaty', if you can't figure out the policy, at least figure out who your friends are.  We are politically dying out here waiting for action.
172  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The US Congress, do-nothing? on: June 12, 2017, 12:31:42 PM
Has anyone heard whether or not the Senate has passed Healthcare reform today?  Has either chamber has passed tax reform yet?

We are supposed to care which party name has majorities in Congress governing us with Democrat tax, spend and over-regulate us policies.

This is not rocket science.
173  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Astronomy, why is the speed of light so slow? on: June 12, 2017, 12:22:53 PM
When you gaze at the night sky, you are not seeing stars in their position in the sky, you are seeing where they were some four thousand years ago due to the slow speed of light, at 300 million meters per second.  If we could devise a way to travel to one of these places at the speed of light, it would take hundreds of human generations to do so.
174  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Low income housing- 'affordable' housing is Basic Economics on: June 10, 2017, 09:45:02 AM
Important piece about "affordable housing".  This is not rocket science but it is very seldom reported on accurately or helpfully.  Almost all we ever hear about is a government imposed solution to a government imposed problem.  This makes sense.
How to Think about Low-Income Housing  by KEVIN D. WILLIAMSON  June 9, 2017

The problem is on the supply side. Well, raise my rent! Here’s a great big Muppet News Flash from the Washington Post: Average-priced goods are relatively expensive for low-wage consumers. Seriously.

Today’s entry in the great national stupidity sweepstakes comes from Tracy Jan, who is relaying the findings of the latest report from the National Low-Income Housing Association. The report’s basic claim takes a familiar form that falls somewhere between intellectual sloppiness and intellectual dishonesty: People earning the minimum wage cannot afford the average one-bedroom apartment without spending more than 30 percent of their incomes . . . pretty much anywhere in the country. There are some variations on the theme: Sometimes, the rent considered is for a two-bedroom apartment, and sometimes the income considered is the federal poverty line or some figure related to it.

All of these so-called studies — they are not really “studies” in the true sense of the word — suffer from the same error: comparing a low wage to an average rent.

The NLIHA paper Jan relies on is methodologically slightly better than most entries in this genre, but only slightly. The usual technique is to consider minimum wage vs. median rent, as in this much-cited report from Zillow: “Zillow analyzed median rents and the income necessary to afford them in 15,099 cities and towns nationwide. In the least expensive city — Beecher, Michigan — a single renter would need to earn $10.64 per hour to afford the city’s median rent of $532 per month without exceeding the 30 percent limit, significantly above both the federal minimum wage and the Michigan state minimum wage of $8.15 per hour.”

The median rent is the rent at the 50th percentile, i.e. the price point at which half of all rents are lower and half are higher. If you consider the median rent, then you just saw off the cheaper half of the market in its entirety. You know where low-wage people go looking for rental properties? In the half of the market that is below the median, most often. Why ignore the actual rents on the actual apartments that actual minimum-wage workers actually rent? For one thing, acquiring that data is hard work. For another, it does not produce nearly enough angst and hysteria.

The NLIHA paper makes almost the same error, but instead of the median rent in various communities it uses a “fair market rent” calculated by the Department of Housing and Urban Development. That number, according to the report, “is typically the 40th percentile of rents that a family can be expected to pay” when that family is moving today, “not what all current renters are paying on average.” That is significant because, according to HUD’s own reporting, families moving to a new rental property with a relatively short timeline for securing new housing typically pay slightly higher rents than do families that haven’t moved in a while, typically about 6 percent more. So the 40th percentile of rents for families paying a 6 percent premium — that won’t be the dead median, but it will be in the neighborhood. It’s the same basic problem: Comparing the incomes of minimum-wage workers against an average rent that includes all families moving into new rental properties, i.e. putting exclusively low wages on one side of the scale and weighing them against the expenses of households with incomes across the spectrum.

Needless to say — but the report does say it — these comparisons do not “reflect the rent variation within a metropolitan area or nonmetropolitan county.” Which is to say: They’re basically useless. Which you might begin to suspect when you consider the fact that low-income people who can’t afford to live anywhere mostly manage to live somewhere.

How does that happen? Hippie magic? Low-income people who can’t afford to live anywhere mostly manage to live somewhere.

One of the remarkable things about people who don’t have very much money is that they have so much money — which is to say, individuals and families with relatively low wages may not have tons of economic power as individuals, but as a market they are enormously powerful. America’s largest private employer, Walmart, represents a truly enormous accumulation of capital organized to address the problem of providing low-cost goods to people who want or need them. Walmart doesn’t keep its prices low because it loves low-income people, but because low-income people spend a great deal of money, and if Walmart doesn’t give them what they want at the price they want, somebody else will.

How this works in the real world is obvious to everybody who doesn’t write for the Washington Post: The median cost of a new car in the United States is about $34,000, which is well out of reach for most minimum-wage earners. You know how minimum-wage earners get around that problem? They buy cars that cost a heck of a lot less than the median — or they buy used cars, share cars, take the bus, etc. Minimum-wage workers solve the problem of relatively high rents by choosing accommodations that are well under the 50th or 40th percentile — or by having roommates, living with their families, etc. The relationship between the minimum wage and the median or near-median rent is an entirely artificial problem cooked up by organizations that want more federal spending on low-income housing (NLIHA) or by politicians arguing for a higher minimum wage. The latter is especially popular during campaign season.

But there is much more to this than a pliant Washington Post reporter getting taken by an intellectually sloppy propaganda “study.” That happens all the time. There’s a much more interesting aspect to all this that’s worth considering. If you drive around most American cities and their suburbs, you might conclude that there seems to be a fair amount of apartment construction going on. You’d be wrong: Multi-family construction hit a six-year low in May. And the construction that is going on is not, for the most part, meant for the lower-wage end of the rental market. From NLIHA: “Household income has not kept up with the rising cost of rental housing. From the housing crisis of 2007 to 2015, the median gross rent for a rental home in the U.S. increased by 6 percent, after adjusting for overall inflation, while the median income for renter households rose by just 1 percent.”

Why aren’t we building more housing for low-income people?

It’s not because there’s no money to be made selling goods and services to low-income consumers: I doubt the French Laundry does as much business in a year as McDonald’s does in an hour, and Honda makes a lot more money selling economy cars to regular folks than Lamborghini does selling exotic cars to guys with yachts. Walmart makes a heck of a lot more money than Hermes or Louis Vuitton. Somebody out there would love to be the Walmart of low-income housing. What’s stopping them? It isn’t, strictly speaking, an economic of technological problem: Mobile homes (which start around $30,000 new), trendy “tiny houses,” and low-income housing developments abroad all show that we can build decent housing at prices within the reach of those with more modest incomes. But construction is moving toward the higher end of the market.

The basic problem is that politicians won’t let developers build housing for poor people. They don’t put it that way, but that’s what they do. Restrictive zoning and development rules in places such as New York City and San Francisco artificially restrict the supply of housing, often for purely aesthetic reasons. The old housing “covenants” were racial; the new ones are economic, with nice rich liberals in Pacific Heights basically saying: “We like things just how they are, thanks, so why don’t you poors beat feet on down to Stockton or wherever it is we warehouse you, right after you’re done cutting my grass?”

The only way to make housing more plentiful is to make housing more plentiful. What that implies, especially in the case of our big cities, is denser development. But our big-city governments — which are almost exclusively under Democratic control — will not allow that. New York City’s population density is less than half that of comparable European cities (and much less than many comparable Asian cities) and, in spite of its reputation as a city of skyscrapers, fewer than 2 percent of its residences are in buildings 20 stories or taller, much lower than the figure for comparable cities globally. In New York, the progressives aren’t working to allow denser development and, hence, cheaper housing: They’re doing the opposite, proposing to cap the number of tall buildings in the city. Forget New Jersey — there are a fair number of New Yorkers who commute from Pennsylvania. San Francisco, Austin, Los Angeles, the parts of Chicago or Philadelphia you might actually want to live in . . . similar story. They’ll call it historic preservation or “defending the character of the neighborhood” or whatever, but it’s basically economic segregation, which, it’s probably worth noting, is still a pretty good proxy for racial discrimination: San Francisco’s black population has decreased by one-third in recent years, and diversity-loving Portland saw its black population shrink by 11.5 percent in just four years. The only way to make housing more plentiful is to make housing more plentiful.

By way of contrast, our friends at the Los Angeles Times were surprised to learn that Houston, way down in right-wing Texas, is the most diverse city in the United States. Everybody knows what Houston has what people want — jobs — but part of the attraction is something that Houston doesn’t have: zoning laws — not very much, anyway. That makes housing in Houston relatively cheap, which makes the area attractive to all sorts of people, including young people, immigrants, and others earning relatively low wages.

At this point, our progressive friends will ask an inevitable question: “Instead of making the whole country look like Houston, which is a horrifying prospect, why not make it more like lovely San Francisco, and then just raise the minimum wage so that people can afford to live there?”

That really isn’t a caricature. Here are the nice Bernie Sanders enthusiasts at making basically that argument. There’s some high-test, weapons-grade economic illiteracy built into that question, the short answer to which is: “Raising the minimum wage will not magic more housing into existence, it just sends a larger pool of money chasing the same quantity of goods, which is the classical formula for inflation.”

But the fundamental error at work here informs so much misguided progressive economic thinking that it is worth considering at some length, starting with the basic economics.

There is in economics something called Say’s Law, which could be summarized as: “People produce in order to consume.” What does that really mean? Consider the most basic and primitive economy, a small band of hunter-gatherers at the dawn of mankind. (The date of which we have just moved back by about half again, apparently.) Why did those hunter-gatherers hunt and gather? It was not for the love of hunting and the thrill of gathering, but for a much more obvious reason: to eat. The basic facts of economics are far removed from abstraction: The point of fishing is fish, and the point of picking coconuts is eating them. That holds true until the level of production and social organization is high enough to allow for the emergence of our old friends specialization, the division of labor, and comparative advantage, all of which is another way of saying that once Throg has more fish than he wants to eat and Grug has more coconuts than he wants to eat, they start swapping fish and coconuts between them. And then Warg figures out how to make useful tools out of flint, which is good for a lot of fish and coconuts, and Yawr learns that she’s better at making thorns into fishing hooks than anybody else in the caveman clan, which is of great interest to Fisherman Throg, and eventually you get Corvettes and Google.

It’s the money that confuses people.

Money is basically information technology. It is a record-keeping system. One of the interesting implications of Say’s Law — that we produce in order to consume — is that there are not really any objective economic values: Everything that is produced and consumed is valued relative to everything else that is produced and consumed. If one mackerel is worth six coconuts or four fishing hooks or one-tenth of a flint chopper, then that can get to be a lot for your average caveman to keep up with. But it’s even more complicated than that: Not only is everything that is produced and consumed valued relative to everything else that is produced and consumed, everybody has different preferences, meaning that there are as many economic-value hierarchies as there are people — and those preference hierarchies can change from day to day or second to second. Again, this is easier to understand if you stick to the physical world rather than get mired in abstraction: You know whose kids get sick of apple pie? Those of the guy who owns the apple orchard. There’s no metaphysically “correct” exchange rate between apples and oysters and shoes and arrowheads — everybody likes what he likes and wants what he wants and — here’s the part that gets overlooked — has what he has.  

Because we produce in order to consume, we value what we have in terms of the things we want. The emergence of money as a record-keeping technology makes that a lot easier to think about, but money is not the point: The things that money gets are the point.

This is important to understand because those valuations exist independent of money. That’s how inflation happens: We value what we value just the way we value it, and introducing more money into the system does not change those value judgments; it just makes money worth less in terms of fish or coconuts. Conversely, taking money out of the system (less of a problem, usually) doesn’t change those value judgments, either: It just makes money worth more in terms of fish or coconuts. You do not change the underlying value relationships by changing the record-keeping system.

That is where so much progressive economic policy goes wrong. Ignoring the physical facts of supply and demand in the real world, progressives attempt to game the record-keeping system in order to produce advantages for politically favored clients or disadvantages for politically disfavored rivals. That’s what raising the minimum wage is all about: The guy who owns your local Burger King franchise values one hour of 17-year-old fry-guy labor just the way he values it. That calculation is inescapably complex — so complex that it never ends up being an actual calculation — taking into account what the product of that hour’s labor can be traded for and the value of that trade relative to the price of the labor. What an hour’s fry-guy labor is worth is bound up in a vastly complex web of value judgments, and the boss’s value judgment isn’t necessarily the most important one: Customers have a say, too. So does the guy who wants your job and is willing to do it for a little less money or who is able to do it a little bit better for the same money. So does the guy who figures out how much interest to charge the boss on the loan with which he buys his new BMW. All of those things are, for lack of a better word, real.

Money is just how we keep track of them.

Passing a law that says you have to pay the fry-guy x + y instead of x does not change the value of the fry-guy’s labor relative to everything else that is produced and consumed. Not really. Ultimately, it is just a change to the record-keeping system. You could pass a law that says we have to pay 15-year-old baby-sitters eight times what we pay hedge-fund managers or brain surgeons, but that is not going to change how we actually value their respective labor. Government can get pretty aggressive about this stuff, which results in fairly predictable market distortions: When the federal government instituted wartime wage controls, employers looking to get the labor they actually valued on terms consistent with their actual valuation of that labor started paying employees in health insurance and company cars instead of paying them in money. The modern practice of offering “fringe benefits” in the form of paid sick leave, vacation time, and other employee perks is a direct response to the policies of the War Labor Board in the 1940s. (It is a big part of why our health-care system stinks.) The lesson: Even in times of war and the heavy-handed economic interventions associated with them, reality finds a way of sneaking around the record-keeping system.

People who earn low wages don’t just have labor that is lightly valued in terms of money: They have labor that is lightly valued in terms of everything for which money can be traded. That includes, among other things, housing. But it also includes education, health care, cars, shoes, food — and fish and coconuts and flint caveman axes, too. You can mess with the money, but those underlying value hierarchies will reassert themselves, sometimes in obvious ways, sometimes in unexpected ones.

With that in mind, let’s reconsider the question: If we are unhappy about the relationship between the price of certain kinds of labor and the price of renting an apartment, what should we actually do about that? We could try changing the price of labor through legislation, or we could try changing the price of renting an apartment through regulation and subsidies — meaning that we could try messing around with the record-keeping system.

Or we could build more apartments.

— Kevin D. Williamson
175  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Russian conspiracy, Comey, related matters on: June 10, 2017, 08:22:22 AM
Thoughts on Comey testimony:  

Big waste of time when no high crime or misdemeanor was committed.  Trump (allegedly) called him a nut job and Comey has behaved ever since as a guy trying to get even.  But this is testimony under oath so words matter.

The key word was "hope".  Trump 'hoped' Flynn could be left alone, allegedly.  A guy he could pardon anyway if he had too.

If Trump was obstructing the investigation, Comey was under obligation to report that immediately by penalty of high crime.  He didn't but under later reflection with hatred as a bias tells all the reasons he should have.

The testimony I heard was all about feelings.  Seriously.  How did you feel when he said that etc.  What did you feel he meant when he said that.  Opponents dwelling on that are essentially admitting they have nothing more.

Trump was a target.  Didn't collude.  No evidence he did etc.  

Russians did interfere.  That happened for sure.  All the agencies agree.  And it went to the top.  No mention ever that was a security breach/faiilure of the Obama administration.  The hearings should be about how the Obama administration failed to protect us, where they failed to protect us, why they failed to protect us.  Where they too focused on trans gender bathrooms, adjusted climate change, Muslims in space?

The Obama administration through Loretta Lynch in cooperation with the Clintons directed Comey to not use the word investigation relating to the investigation of the Clintons.  Creepy if not illegal interference.  What is his job in it other than investigations, note the name of the bureau, federal bureau of investigations.  This was more of a kinetic operation of resources into a situation.  Good grief.  No one was outraged to hear that?

The leaks were the biggest crimes exposed so far.  No questions hardly on getting to the bottom of that.  Comey was one of the leakers.  The Comey memo was a government produced document of an official meeting, presumed private and classified?  He leaked it trying to enact or change policy.  That's how Washington works now; go through the press with leaked documents.  Why would it be a crime?

One story by the NY Times, still not corrected, was totally false - about Trump under investigation.  A point made on these pages often, but it is not illegal to leak and get published false information said to be classified, but it is illegal for people knowing the true classified information to correct the false public reporting.  So goes our media-led discourse coming out of Washington.

Rubio made the point that the only thing not leaked was that Trump was never a target of the investigation.

While the country focuses on a shiny object and the real crimes go uninvestigated and unsolved (okay, they got one Democrat activist in the NSA leaker), tax reform is not done, Obamacare is still not repealed, North Korea is conducting missile tests for nuclear attacks explicitly for the purpose of hitting the US mainland, and China is militarizing the South China Sea from Taiwan to Singapore.  What could possibly wrong?
176  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Race: Racism of the left on: June 06, 2017, 02:18:46 PM
It shouldn't go without mention that after Bill Maher used the house-n--- word, Kathy Griffin tried to end her brush with fame by blaming her sad life on oppression of white males.

There is something telling of our culture that this isn't offensive to white males.

"'There's Old White Guys Trying to Silence Me'"

Poor her.  But why is okay to throw them all in a group and slander them?  That wouldn't sound good if aimed at some other, any other, group.
177  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: American History D Day, The Ordeal of Omaha Beach on: June 06, 2017, 02:11:17 PM
the passing of the years and the retelling of the story have softened the horror of Omaha Beach on D Day.
178  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Rod Carew's heart on: June 06, 2017, 12:51:17 PM
MVP, 17 time all-star, 7 time batting champ, got a new heart last year.

This is the first time they’ve heard of anonymously matched organs between families who knew each other. It’s believed to be the first time a heart has gone from one pro athlete to another.
179  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Environmental issues, 80 peer reviewed charts on climate change on: June 06, 2017, 09:20:48 AM

View it all.  Nothing unprecedented is happening with the climate.
180  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate on: June 05, 2017, 03:29:06 PM
quote author=G M
Is that by Hwy. 24 to I-70? I was thinking down to "Buenie" and up 285.

Colo 91.  Coming from Denver, I-70 then exit at Copper Mountain/Leadville/Independence Pass.  Hwy 91 for 20 miles. 

From Leadville you can travel the Top of the Rockies Scenic Byway to Vail Valley over the Eagle River (below) or to  Aspen over Independence Pass .\

Do the drives in daylight!

181  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / John Belushi plays Hillary - excuse making tour on: June 05, 2017, 11:53:02 AM
John Belushi plays Hillary in a famous movie clip, Blues Brothers, 1980:

Jake Blues: I ran out of gas! I got a flat tire! I didn’t have change for cab fare! I lost my tux at the cleaners! I locked my keys in the car! An old friend came in from out of town! Someone stole my car! There was an earthquake! A terrible flood! Locusts! IT WASN’T MY FAULT, I SWEAR TO GOD!
182  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate on: June 05, 2017, 12:41:56 AM
Not bad.  How long is the drive into Denver?

90 miles, 90 minutes to the edge of Denver, same as Vail, mostly freeway crossing the continental divide twice.  Snow in winter, crisp nights, beautiful summers, 300 days/yr of sunshine.  Near Turquoise Lake, surrounded by national forest, mountain peaks, hiking trails.
183  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / 31,487 U.S. Scientists Reject Global Warming Premise on: June 04, 2017, 05:11:10 PM
There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.

31,487 U.S. Scientists Reject Global Warming Hoax
Posted On 04 Jun 2017By : Jonathon Moseley3 CommentsTag: Aristotle, carbon dioxide, climate change, cold fusion, consensus, Earth's orbit, environment, Fleischmann–Pons, Frederick Seitz, geologic history, global warming, Global Warming Petition Project, greenhouse gases, Hoax, IPCC, Japan, Kyoto, natural climate cycles, Nobel Prize, Oak Ridge, Petition Project, physicists, scientists, Sir Francis Bacon, U.S. National Academy of Sciences, United Nations, University of Utah
A growing list of 31,487 U.S. scientists (and counting) has signed a petition strongly rejecting as unproven the hypothesis of man-made global warming or climate change. These signers include four NASA astronauts, at least two Nobel Prize winning physicists, 9,029 Ph.D.s  and some of the nation’s top climatologists. Only U.S. scientists are included in this particular petition. Only relevant scientific fields are included.

The “Global Warming Petition Project” includes a dramatically strong statement to which 31,487 scientists have already signed their names.  [above]
184  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Housing/Mortgage/Real Estate on: June 04, 2017, 04:59:35 PM
From tax issues, GM: "Between this and California's new and exciting single payer, Crafty is going to have to think real hard about where to live."

Crafty's not going anywhere but if I had to leave beautiful ocean views behind, I would insist on beautiful mountain views.  Train at 10,000 ft.  Or 14k when you hike up.  My 2nd home town. Views of the two highest peaks, 37 acres, <$200k.  Colorado taxes.,fsbo_lt/pmf,pf_pt/house,land_type/2106188201_zpid/93408_rid/150000-200000_price/552-736_mp/globalrelevanceex_sort/39.492913,-105.733796,39.035719,-106.858521_rect/9_zm/
185  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Tax Policy, Was the blue state penalty designed to bring Dems to the table? on: June 04, 2017, 08:30:56 AM
WSJ, Schumer’s choice: Play on tax reform or lose the state and local deduction.

Can blue state ideologues be leveraged to act in their own best interest?  I doubt it.

I draw a distinction.  State income taxes are a direct tax on high income earners.  Property taxes are not.
186  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / CNN on London jihad attacks: we don’t know “their motives” on: June 04, 2017, 07:39:42 AM

People might want to try a news source that does.

3 more attacks overnight in London.  Knives and truck.  More deaths, more injuries.

Our guess that it might be Lutheran extremists is not real funny anymore.
187  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Best of Hillary-Huma emails, Fly w/ Mrs O? No. Take Separate Planes, "Of Course" on: June 02, 2017, 11:37:02 AM
Separate-planes should be the middle name of both Hillary and Michelle, no disrespect intended, they've earned it.

Nice thing about the private server is that she thought we would never see communications like these.  Revealed is an ugly peak into her miserable, privileged soul.

[Read it from the bottom up.]

Secure, luxurious, expensive government aircraft  was all set for Mrs. Clinton's travel.  Instead she wants separate aircraft.  If it only costs several million, not to mention the phony global warmings emissions argument, we wouldn't she prefer separate aircraft.  After all, there will be news people, egos, appearances, image critics and cameras likely on the tarmac.  

Meanwhile, were is Chris Stevens and  where are those lost security requests of his?

Hillary to Huma, July 9, 2011
"Is is ok that we and Mrs O take on two separate planes?"

"I would rather have our own of course."

188  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Fusion Party, Democrats follow the lead of the progressive media, VDH on: June 02, 2017, 09:22:30 AM
Rush L has pointed out it is no longer the media and the academia carrying the water for liberal Democratic politicians, it is now the other way around.  The thought leaders of the left aren't the elected politicians. The driving ideas like central planning, government healthcare, redistributing income inequality and world government come out of academics and media.  The politicians are the pigeons who carry it out, put it in law.

This VDH article makes a similar point:
"The Democrats are following the lead of the progressive media"
189  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: IC too big? on: June 02, 2017, 09:05:41 AM
In dire need of major cuts. For a multitude of reasons, most importantly, it's threat to American freedom.

There is something misguided about having 17 agencies in charge of something, which leads to no one being in charge and people assuming someone else is handling what is most important.  It leads to leaks and it makes the leaks exponentially harder to track down.   Decisions tend to get made by consensus instead of knowledge and wisdom.

I supported collecting NSA metadata for connecting foreign threats to domestic contacts back when we could say there are no examples of its abuse.  That is no longer true.
190  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / US Sovereignty/International Law/ The Paris "Accord" on: June 02, 2017, 08:54:35 AM
"Consider it a campaign promise rightly kept."  Unconstitutional by design, a feature not a bug.

It takes 4 years to get out of a 'non-binding agreement'.  What??!  Sounds binding.

The agreement holds us to a different standard and cost than our economic partners and competitors.

It's called a "treaty" everywhere else but an "Accord" in the US because liberals control the language and if we called it a treaty it would require 2/3rds of the Senate to confirm.  That pesky constitution again!

Pres. Obama entered the US in the accord with lame duck timing, Sept. 3 2016.  The only election referendum on the issue was Trump's win, asked and answered.

The cost estimate is $100 trillium - likely to go up from there.

The temperature mitigation through the end of the century, year 2100, is 0.3 degrees C by UN models and math, likely overstated by seven-fold, within the margin of error rounding to zero.

There is zero chance that CO2 will be our biggest worry in 2010.  Carbon dioxide will still be essential for life and still have a concentration in the atmosphere of less than one part per thousand.
191  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / [Obama Administration surveil, leak, unmask] Scandal Hiding in Plain Sight on: June 01, 2017, 08:59:14 AM
...we now know for certain that the Obama administration weaponized the intelligence agencies in order to use them against political opponents, in a manner that is unprecedented, highly dangerous to our democracy, and criminal.  - John Hinderaker, Powerline

...what are we to make of the recently unveiled Obama administration program of massively spying on political opponents in violation of clearly established law?  - Glenn Reynolds, USA Today

James Rosen: Unmasking Obama Administration's Unmaskers
Samantha Power Unmasked
Why would a diplomat need to know the names of Trump officials?


Declassified memos show FBI illegally shared spy data on Americans with private parties
The FBI has illegally shared raw intelligence about Americans with unauthorized third parties and violated other constitutional privacy protections, according to newly declassified government documents that undercut the bureau’s public assurances about how carefully it handles warrantless spy data to avoid abuses or leaks.
192  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Environmental issues: Land use for Organic diet is 40% higher on: June 01, 2017, 08:51:51 AM
193  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Education dollars at work on: June 01, 2017, 08:46:21 AM
The crisis in higher education includes millions of people studying nothing of significance, writing big words with co-opted meanings - often at taxpayer expense.  "The College Fix' reports on such an effort.  Meanwhile, STEM positions go unfilled and outsourced.

“Assembled Bodies: Reconfiguring Quantum Identities.”...argues in support of “combining intersectionality and quantum physics” to better understand “marginalized people” and to create “safer spaces” for them...

Because traditional quantum physics theory has influenced humanity’s understanding of the world, it has also helped lend credence to the ongoing regime of racism, sexism and classism that hurts minorities, Stark writes in “Assembled Bodies: Reconfiguring Quantum Identities.”

[author] holds an appointment in women’s and gender studies at the University of Arizona through its Institute for LGBT Studies.

...identifies Newtonian physics as one of the main culprits behind oppression. “Newtonian physics,” she writes, has “separated beings” based on their “binary and absolute differences.”

These structures of classification, such as male/female, or living/non-living, are “hierarchical and exploitative” and are thusly “part of the apparatus that enables oppression.”

Therefore, Stark argues in favor of combining intersectionality and quantum physics theory to fight against the imperative to classify people based on hierarchical categories.

“For instance, I, being white, should not be in all spaces, positions of authority, or meetings,” she said, because her presence could “stall” movements towards progress.

Stark concludes her paper by hoping that the “apparatus that enables oppression” – buoyed by Newtonian physics – shifts towards “less oppressive” power dynamics.
While she does not have any academic training in physics or quantum physics, she did complete a master’s degree in “Cyborg and Post Colonial Theory”...
194  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Venezuela opposition condemns Goldman Sachs debt deal on: June 01, 2017, 08:29:41 AM
Protesters demonstrate outside Goldman Sachs headquarters in New York, May 30,

Opposition leaders in Venezuela have strongly criticised the investment bank Goldman Sachs for buying $2.8bn (£2.1bn) of government bonds.

Opponents of embattled President Nicolas Maduro say the move has given his government a financial lifeline.

The New York-based investment bank is reported to have bought the bonds at a heavily discounted rate.
Goldman Sachs said it bought the debt on the secondary market and did not deal directly with the government.

But the opposition has threatened that a future government would refuse to repay the debts to the bank.

The opposition-controlled Congress also voted on Tuesday to ask its US counterpart to investigate the deal.

"Goldman Sachs' financial lifeline to the regime will serve to strengthen the brutal repression unleashed against the hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans peacefully protesting for political change in the country," said Julio Borges, head of Venezuela's Congress, in a letter to Goldman Sachs president Lloyd Blankfein.

"Given the unconstitutional nature of Nicolas Maduro's administration, its unwillingness to hold democratic elections and its systematic violation of human rights, I am dismayed that Goldman Sachs decided to enter this transaction."

He said he intended to recommend to "any future democratic government of Venezuela not to recognise or pay on these bonds".
Protesters clash with police during an opposition protest in Caracas, Venezuela

The Venezuelan capital Caracas is the scene of regular anti-government protests
BBC economics correspondent Andrew Walker says it is likely that the price was deeply discounted and, if the debts are paid on time, it would make the bonds a very lucrative investment.
However, the economic crisis in Venezuela means that a default is a real possibility, he adds.

The bonds were issued by Venezuela's nationalised oil company, PDVSA.
In a statement, Goldman Sachs said it made the purchase in the expectation that the political situation in Venezuela would improve.

"We are invested in PDVSA bonds because, like many in the asset management industry, we believe the situation in the country must improve over time," it said.

"We recognise that the situation is complex and evolving and that Venezuela is in crisis. We agree that life there has to get better, and we made the investment in part because we believe it will."
Venezuela is grappling with regular anti-government demonstrations and dozens of people have died in protest-related violence since April.
195  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of the Republicans, RINOs by definition on: June 01, 2017, 08:02:32 AM
In the two party system, RINOs (Republicans in name only) by definition are politicians who call themselves Republicans, get elected and govern like Democrats.

The biggest differences in the parties tends to be on domestic policy - taxes, spending and regulations.  The biggest parts of that right now are Obamacare and our arcane, self defeating tax system.

It is now June of the first year of the 'unified' government where we elected a Republican House, Senate and President all promising to fix that - and we wait...

The economic results of this year will be scored as Republican results under Democrat policies. R-I-N-O.

I wrote to my congressman who is on the House Ways and Means Committee about tax reform and he wrote back that he supports it.  Who cares if they support it if they don't enact it!

Am I being unreasonably impatient or are they being stupid, timid, incompetent, unready to govern?

Granted, it is hard to get agreement among a wide group elected from different constituencies under different circumstances.  But the alternative is the status quo leading to economic and electoral failure.

When Republicans fail, see the George Bush Presidency in 2006, voters don't replace them with better Republicans, they aren't even offered better Republicans.  Voters turn to Democrats of the Pelosi-Reid-Obama-Hillary-Ellison-Biden-Sanders-Warren ilk.  By not reforming taxes and programs we will get higher taxes and bigger programs.

The mere prospect that tax rates will be lower next year than this year exacerbates paralysis, stagnation, weakens the economy further and helps the opponents to re-take power and move things irreversibly in the wrong direction.  The longer we wait to repeal and replace Obamacare while dependency gets more and more entrenched just makes it harder or impossible to do ever.

Pick up any major newspaper and read about shiny objects in the rear view mirror while the opportunity to turn this country around gets squandered.
196  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of the left on: May 31, 2017, 05:58:07 PM
I take it you have seen Brietbart today and thus this :
Could anyone imagine the outrage if someone did this with Baraq? ??  The LEFT media would be 24/7 manic rants screaming and yelling for that person to be fired and shunned and never to work again and to get on his or her knees and beg to forgiven.

ccp,  I heard the apology before I saw the picture.  Didn't know who she was by name but now I recognize her.

While there is a huge double standard, we just found out there is a line leftists shouldn't cross.  This actually did get a reaction and outrage from almost all.

The apology was quite well written and delivered but I think the last line of her apology was that she 'went too far'.  Went too far??  That line opens more questions than answers.  Behead without the blood on it was okay?  Stabbed, shot, hung okay?

She has been fired by CNN by the time of this writing I think.  A (leftist) comic worked for CNN?  Why??

I don't know the totality of her work.  ALways left, sometimes funny, I would guess. I don't think much of apologies.  Apologizing is better than not, but doesn't erase the act.  People shouldn't normally lose a lifetime of achievements for one mistake, but it happens.  She apologized because she saw the reaction, not because she thought it was wrong.  The apology was for career survival, self interest, not because they don't all wish him dead.  The firing was CNN doing the same.  Subtle leftism on the networks is what works, not the outrageous stuff.  This incident is memorable and will symbolize the horrible treatment this President gets.  The fact that leftist operatives posing as mainstream media, CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, NY Times, Washington Post, and LA Times all have 87-93% negative coverage of Trump in the subtle form, just reporting the news, is far more effective.

It is hurtful to Melania, 11 year old Barron and others.  It is probably helpful to Trump's reelection for the derangement syndrome to gain a graphic image.  It could inspire one more crazy person to do a bad thing.

Mostly it means two more days or a week that healthcare and tax reform fail to gain momentum.  
197  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Illegal Immigration, Pres Bill Clinton, 1995 State of Union, A nation of laws on: May 31, 2017, 02:16:54 PM

Full transcript:

All Americans, not only in the States most heavily affected but in every place in this country, are rightly disturbed by the large numbers of illegal aliens entering our country. The jobs they hold might otherwise be held by citizens or legal immigrants. The public service they use impose burdens on our taxpayers. That's why our administration has moved aggressively to secure our borders more by hiring a record number of new border guards, by deporting twice as many criminal aliens as ever before, by cracking down on illegal hiring, by barring welfare benefits to illegal aliens. In the budget I will present to you, we will try to do more to speed the deportation of illegal aliens who are arrested for crimes, to better identify illegal aliens in the workplace as recommended by the commission headed by former Congresswoman Barbara Jordan. We are a nation of immigrants. But we are also a nation of laws. It is wrong and ultimately self-defeating for a nation of immigrants to permit the kind of abuse of our immigration laws we have seen in recent years, and we must do more to stop it.
198  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Demographics, India population passes up China on: May 31, 2017, 01:27:07 PM
199  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Newspaper Parking Spaces All Taken Up by Anonymous Sources, Onion on: May 31, 2017, 11:35:24 AM
Washington Post Reporter Frustrated Every Space In Parking Garage Taken Up By Anonymous Source

WASHINGTON—Circling every level multiple times with no luck whatsoever, Washington Post reporter Philip Rucker was frustrated Tuesday that every space in the parking garage was taken up by an anonymous source. “I’ve gone around and around, but I can’t find a single spot that isn’t already filled by an unidentified White House leaker,”
200  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / It is wrong for countries to intervene in foreign elections on: May 30, 2017, 05:18:34 PM

Which offends the left the most?
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