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201  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: More indications Intel Assessment of Russian Interference was rigged on: May 15, 2017, 11:51:08 AM
quote author=G M
"Still 100% evidence free!"
Senator Warner was all charged up about the investigation on Fox News Sunday yesterday.

After all the bloviating, Wallace asked him:

WALLACE: At various points, top officials, including former Director of National Intelligence Clapper have said that at that point, they had seen no evidence of collusion between the Kremlin and what I will call Trump-world. Have you seen any evidence of collusion?

WARNER: We are still relatively early in our investigation. [No we haven't.] ... We’re going to follow that intelligence wherever it leads.

Sen. Feinstein said the same thing recently:

Do you have evidence that there was in fact collusion between Trump associates and Russia during the campaign?” asked CNN’s Wolf Blizter.

“Not at this time,” replied Feinstein.

The point being that these people are on the committees and had classified briefings - for going on a year of looking.  No evidence "YET".

We need to investigate further because we don't have evidence - yet.  There is a cover up but no underlying crime.  A cover up of WHAT?  We need impeachment too, we just don't have the underlying crime yet for that either.

Meanwhile, we have plenty of evidence of Clinton collusion, Hillary from inside the State department and Bill from the Foundation, of collusion and pay, quid pro quo, over the State department approval of the Russian purchase of American Uranium assets.  Is there not a law against this?  Makes the Louisiana Congressman's $100,000 in the freezer look like peanuts.  He didn't sign off on a strategic asset.  The Russians didn't hack one voting machine, but millions of illegals voted at perhaps a 13% rate.  Ho hum.

Another shiny damn object that has nothing to do with reforming healthcare or growing the economy.  Twice in the hour above they interrupted collusion talk with Sen Mike Lee for a question 'about your day job', meaning the passing of legislation in the Senate.  Nothing there.  And Pres. Trump keeps feeding into this instead of either ignoring them or calling them out on it.

Strange times.  Double standard.  Shiny object.
202  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Jonah's take on reasons for leaks on: May 12, 2017, 06:49:52 PM
Leaking classified information is a crime.

But when the 'leak' is false information, it is not a crime.  
203  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Cognitive Dissonance of the left, Calif Dem calls heartland "Podunk USA" on: May 12, 2017, 07:47:53 AM
A gaffe for Republicans is when they say something that's wrong.  For Democrats, it's when they reveal what they really think - like Jonathon Gruber selling Obamacare to the "stupid".  In this case, it is more about the "deplorables", the "bitter clingers".  The more refined, liberal, urban coastals like Rep. Eshoo believe you know-nothings in Podunk are an embarrassment.

204  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Venezuela on: May 11, 2017, 05:56:18 PM
"an honest liberal"  isn't that an oxymoron?  ... "useful idiot" by those who seek power via socialism.

I meant honest liberal in the optimistic sense.  Honest liberal is a temporary state.  A cognitive dissonant.
  An unstable compound.  The more honest you are - and curious and informed, the less liberal (meaning leftist) you will be.  So much of capitalism and conservatism is counter intuitive.  Acting in your own self interest like starting a business helps others, for example. So much of leftism is wrong in terms of policies and results.  Stealing capital from the rich didn't help the poor, for example.  Venezuela proved it.

The Venezuela experience gives us a time machine look at our (US) own future, following their path.

The 2% inflation target is a destructive force here over time.  Imagine 800% inflation!  And that isn't the central problem, just one of the symptoms.
205  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Venezuela - Maybe they went too far (with socialism) on: May 11, 2017, 10:27:15 AM
'[Marxism] is not self sustaining.'

Even the good parts of government or public sector functions are not self sustaining - without a healthy, vibrant PRIVATE sector.

I asked an honest liberal, a Bernie Sanders supporter at the time, why Venezuela failed.  They were doing the same things there that liberals wanted to do here and they destroyed the economy.  She said:

"Maybe they went too far."

Yes, exactly.  All countries and economies have some socialism in them, common defense, post office, roads, safety net for the poor, government encroachments on private sector activities, etc.  In Venezuela under Chavez-Madura, they went too far!
206  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The war on the rule of law, Comey on: May 11, 2017, 09:50:14 AM
The left, the media or the rule of law, who knows?  Does anyone seriously believe firing Comey will make some impeachment level crime of Trump's go away, of which there is no evidence after almost 12 months of investigation...

They didn't kill him.  He can still speak, and make appearances. They didn't fire the whole department.  Was he working alone in secret on something? 

Did he (successfully) investigate leaks in his own department, or the leaks of the bureaucracy (deep state) or of the previous administration?

Did he investigate the IRS scandal that came to light under his watch?  Who did they charge?  (No one)

Is there ANYTHING he did right or got right?
207  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Left went after the guy who interfered with their narrative no doubt on: May 11, 2017, 09:00:18 AM

Paragraph after paragraph of different angles to look at a shiny object.

President Trump said Comey wasn't doing a good job.

A minute before the firing, everyone in the country thought Comey was not doing a good job.

Even Comey said he has long believed a president can fire an FBI director for any reason or no reason.

No honest person in America believes the laws of the land were even-handedly enforced over Comey's tenure.

Do you remember the uproar from the last time a president fired an FBI director, Bill Clinton firing William Sessions in 1993?

Neither do I.
208  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Trump Transition/Administration, James Comey on: May 10, 2017, 11:46:53 AM
When Loretta Lynch recused herself from the Hillary Clinton matter, that did not make James Comey in charge of prosecutorial decisions.  He pulled an Alexander Haig there, took charge, and blew it.

People asking why now should ask why their guy didn't do it when they thought he was failing at his job.  Or it is all just talk...

He didn't ask her any question about intent then said he didn't find intent, when the law clearly states that intent is not required.

She was guilty and then uncharged, treated differently from others because he did not want to upset the ongoing election.

Now she is still uncharged because he cannot or will not read the law, or enforce it.  He was fired once they had an assistant AG in place to do that.

Rightfully fired.  Good riddance.
209  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / How Venezuela ruined its oil industry on: May 09, 2017, 08:20:56 AM
Heavy oil has production challenges and it turns out that capitalism is capital intensive.  Jimmy Carter also tried to put 'excess profits' into social programs instead of into oil production machinery and expertise.  Chavez was more successful at it.

Now the Venezuelan oil sits in the ground and people starve.

Greed (self-interest) for Chavez and Maduro would have been to let the Venezuelan oil industry become the the biggest and the best in the world, instead of killing​ it.
210  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: European matters on: May 08, 2017, 03:47:19 PM
"The french deserve to get what they voted for."

True, but WE would be better off with a better France.
211  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Trump Administration: on: May 08, 2017, 03:33:10 PM
Ivanka Trump to review climate change as US mulls Paris pullout
The president’s daughter and adviser will look at the issue as he weighs taking the US out of a global emissions-cutting deal

His liberal daughter is the best person in the country to advise on this most important decision?

He should have elevated an expert to take on the experts, someone like Richard Lindzen, Fred Singer, Roy Spencer, John Christy.
212  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The mystery of Venezuela's collapse on: May 08, 2017, 03:24:37 PM
quote author=G M
What Caused Venezuela's Collapse Is No Mystery — Except To Economically Illiterate Journalists

More on that:
As Venezuela Implodes, NBC Avoids Naming the Cause: Socialism

Leftists should be proud of what their policies wrought.  Not just an end to obscene prosperity, but also genocidal weight loss.

I like this line from GM's post:  The list of Chavez / Maduro accomplishments reads like a Democratic Party Platform.

The economic results are relevant to the US political economic argument.

213  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: European matters, French election on: May 08, 2017, 03:04:52 PM
Macron won, 66-34.  Though I found myself pulling for disruption versus more of the same, Le Pen and her party really gave nothing much to identify with.

Her party was recently associated with holocaust denial? and anti-semitism?  Her own economics has nothing to do with mine, how do you side against free trade?

The objection with 'Europe' / EU from my point of view is about being governed by afar, by bureaucrats.  If I were French, I would oppose loss of sovereignty, not oppose trade.

France has and unemployment rate of 10% while younger workers have an unemployment rate of 20%.  Sadly, his election will do nothing to improve that.  Le Pen likely wouldn't have fixed that either.

Macron winning means that no better candidate or party was on the ballot.  France isn't a conservative country.  The left reforms by changing their name.  The conservative / right needs a new political economic paradigm as well.
214  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / A Le Pen win on Sunday could be the West’s biggest shock this century on: May 05, 2017, 02:45:38 PM

Everyone says it won't happen...
215  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / KoreaTimes: China urges citizens in N. Korea to return home on: May 05, 2017, 02:35:37 PM

China urges citizens in N. Korea to return home Posted : 2017-05-02 13:52Updated : 2017-05-03 17:
North Korean soldiers carry the Korean People's Army flag as they walk past residential buildings along Ryomyong street in Pyongyang, North Korea, Apr. 13. / AP-Yonhap

By Ko Dong-hwan

The Chinese Embassy in North Korea has advised Korean-Chinese residents to return home amid concern that the North's military provocations may trigger a U.S. attack on the North, according to a source.

The embassy began sending the message on Apr. 20, five days before the North celebrated the 85th anniversary of the Korean People's Army with a show of military power, Radio Free Asia said Tuesday.

The U.S.-based station specializes in North Korea.

The station cited a Korean-Chinese living in the North's capital, who said he left for China late last month after the embassy contacted him.

He said he has been visiting China every two to three months but, after being told he should "stay in China for a while," left North Korea a month early.

"The embassy has never given such a warning. I was worried and left the country in a hurry," said the man, whose name was withheld.

But he said that most Korean-Chinese residents in Pyongyang were ignoring the message.

The city's "peaceful" atmosphere, despite the global crisis due to the state's threats involving missiles and nuclear tests, might have kept them unaware of the situation, he added.

The embassy's warning indicates that China is worried that the saber-rattling North and U.S. moves to destabilize the Kim Jong-un regime might affect Chinese citizens abroad.

The North was expected to conduct its sixth nuclear test around the 105th anniversary of the state's founder Kim Il-sung's birth on Apr. 15 and/or on the national military anniversary on Apr. 25.

The test did not happen on either day, except a fizzled missile test on Apr. 29.
216  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Michael Yon on: May 05, 2017, 02:28:44 PM
Welcome Michael!  Honored to have you here.  Very interesting insight.  Would the pro-North Korean groups in Japan favor the regime or the people?
217  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Mark Mills, Energy Demand: The Cloud on: May 04, 2017, 09:53:07 AM
Mark Mills of Gilder Technology fame has written a blockbuster analysis here:

In 10 years, the energy use of "the cloud" has already surpassed all of aviation n the world, and the growth of it has hit tip of the iceberg level yet.  The super data centers like google requires have amazing usage and growth.  Google's usage is up 12-fold in the last 4 years.  Hyperscale Data Centers:  Wireless takes far more eneergy than wired. (Who knew?)

If the IT sector was a nation, it is already the 3rd largest user of energy behind China and the US.

This is second in a series.  Maybe he will get to how (nuclear?) we need to produce this new energy requirement.

First part, Shale Crushes Solar, is here:
218  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / War on the rule of law, Susan Rice, Comey, HRC, Loretta Lynch on: May 04, 2017, 09:14:18 AM
ccp: no loss  (politics)
The congressional hearings are such a waste of time anyway.  She is just going to lie her way through them even if she showed up so what is the point?
Have we ever seen any consequences that means anything from any of these things?  I can't recall any:

Congressional hearings are a waste of time because congress had no power (under Obama) to jail the people it held in contempt.  Eric Holder comes to mind.  Lois Lerner.  The IRS commissioner.

Having Susan Rice, who was at the center of some of the administration's lies, testify (falsely) under oath does have some potential value IMHO.
Comey and the Russians cost Hillary the election?  First it wikileaks, not the Russians, and what they were releasing was proof she broke the rule of law.

Comey went public when Loretta Lynch recused herself.  Why?  For meeting with Bill Clinton secretly.  Does that break the rule of law?  Of course.  Ex parte, interfering with a federal investigation, and for another thing, equal treatment under the law.  What other person under federal investigation gets to have one of the richest and most powerful men in the world, who got her her job and largely controls her future, meet in secret with the Attorney General SECRETLY right while she is making her decision of whether to go forward with criminal prosecution.  She shouldn't have 'recused herself' from the decision, she should have been escorted off the scene in handcuffs, read her rights and been given a fair trial.

Comey, who never asked HRC a question about intent, is still talking yesterday about finding no evidence of intent in the hidden and discovered emails.  Unmentioned is that the espionage act she broke dos not in any way require intent.

And what was the intent of the private server that BILL Cinton set up and Hillary used?  James Carville said it on national television.  To keep these committees from seeing these correspondences.  And what was the business, proven in all the hacked and released emails?  The co-mingling of the Clinton Foundation, State Department business, and the accompanying Clinton personal wealth gain tied to it as plain to see as the sunrise on a clear day.

And to jail goes no one.

Rule of law?  What rule of law!

If you or I (or George W Bush) did the same thing, we would be in jail now.
219  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media, Colbert vulgarity on Trump on: May 03, 2017, 03:43:31 PM
Remember when 'comedians' at least pretended to have balance?  Neither do I.

“Mr. Trump, your presidency, I love your presidency. I call it “Disgrace the Nation.”

“Sir, you attract more skinheads than free Rogaine.”

“You have more people marching against you than cancer.”

“You talk like a sign language gorilla who got hit in the head.”

“In fact, the only thing your mouth is good for is being Vladimir Putin’s cock holster.”

Video at the link.
220  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Economics on: May 03, 2017, 03:14:04 PM
"We won't change anything until the actual collapse."

If the collapse happens under the appearance of Republican governance, the change will not be for the better.  (cf. 2008.)
221  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Tax Policy on: May 03, 2017, 03:12:11 PM
"Can we find a donor for a brain, spine and testicular implants for the stupid party's leadership?"

Under 'stupid party', you will find at least 2 listings.
222  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Defending Heritage on: May 03, 2017, 03:08:23 PM
I don't know how an organization can call itself "conservative" and claim they are NOT political.  Isn't that an oxymoron.

More  like a  establishment big DC  trying to wrest control from real " conservative" vs tea part populist or constitutional conservative issue influence???

Based on the reporting, DeMint was leading in a Trump direction, looking for research to support that narrative.  Needham is more of a Cruz guy.  Trump is the political vehicle of the moment, but some of his economic ideas aren't backed up in the data.  Cruz and some of his ideas aren't practical or electable in my view.  Heritage should study the effectiveness of different policies and leave the mechanics of campaigning, getting elected and getting things passed to the parties and politicians.

On taxes and economic policy, Heritage should stand unapologetically for economic growth and individual economic freedom, research and print what the mainstream media refuse to do on that.

Here is and example I was looking at yesterday:
The tax rate cuts of the 1920s were followed by a 61% increase revenues over 7 years.
The Kennedy tax rate cuts brought a 62% increase in revenues over 7 years.
The Reagan tax rate cuts yielded a 54% increase over 6 years (100% over 10 years).
[Then when Bush or Trump propose tax rate cuts, the media demands to know how they will deal with the static revenue loss - a demonstrably false premise question.]

In another example, Heritage ranks which countries allow their people the most and least economic freedom and the economic results that accompany that.

Who do we trust to research these things if they don't?  Brookings? The NY Times?  MSNBC??

Besides Heritage, may I suggest people give money to Center for the American Experiment and some others:
223  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Cognitive Dissonance of the Republicans? Demint out at Heritage on: May 03, 2017, 07:44:44 AM
Politics at Heritage?  Or is it politics out at Heritage?

Eliana Johnson reports from behind the scenes.
224  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Pathological Science, Global Temperatures Plunge on: May 03, 2017, 07:33:53 AM

It's strange to see measured temperatures vary almost as much in a month as they do in a century.  Makes me think the end of the world is coming.
225  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Laffer on Trump plan on: May 02, 2017, 10:03:33 AM
Arthur Laffer also makes the case for tax policy that brings growth and he compliments Trump on choices in the plan

"...the faulty logic that their tax cuts must be revenue-neutral in a static analysis. "

Static analysis is false when the whole point of the policy change is to accelerate economic growth!

"Voters want and need economic growth... and they want it now!"

Economic growth was 0% last quarter.  This is now May, another quarter shot.  In 7 months we start the next election year and economic results lag policy changes.  I just don't get the lackadaisical approach to the timing of this, as if the policy change doesn't matter.  This isn't the transition or the first 100 days anymore.  Trump should not want his Presidency's economy scored under the Obama administration's tax disincentives system.  If the new reform is so simple, write it up, sell it and pass it.  Let's go!
226  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Venezuela, Maduro boosts minimum wage by 60% on: May 02, 2017, 09:42:09 AM

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro has ordered a 60% increase in the country's minimum wage, effective from Monday.

Including food subsidies, the worst-paid workers will now take home about 200,000 bolivars a month - less than $50 (£38) at the black market rate.

The pay rise is the third this year from Mr Maduro, and aims to benefit government workers and the military.

Hard to say what the wage increases are when inflation is running at 800%/yr!  The state of affairs in Venezuela is a human tragedy.  I also look at it for an economic model for us.  These policies are also proposed here and supported by roughly/nearly half the voters.  What has happened in Venezuela can't happen here (US)?  Why not?  Venezuela was the richest country in South America.  Venezuela right now is rated as having the world's largest oil reserves.  And they are broke, dysfunctional and hungry.  Why?  Bad policies have bad consequences.  That can't happen here?  It already is - in some places, to some degree.  It will happen here for certain - if we don't continuously choose a different path.
227  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Political Economics, Make-or-Break Moment for America Over Economic Growth on: May 02, 2017, 09:27:57 AM
One writer gets it.  If we don't improve from a period of zero growth and doubling of the debt, what comes next?  More of the same?  I doubt it.  Could be MUCH worse if we don't straighten out stagnation and disincentives system.

Make-or-Break Moment At Hand for America Over Economic Growth.
Conrad Black, May 2 2017, NY Sun

GDP growth declined from 4.5% annually in the last six Reagan years, to 3.9% in the last six Clinton years (as the current-account deficit and the housing bubble ballooned), to 2% in the George W. Bush years, to 1% in the Obama years. If per capita GDP had increased in the first 15 years of this new century as it had in the years between 1945 and 2000, families and individuals in the United States would be 20 percent wealthier than they are. In the Reagan years, the federal debt increased to 50% of GDP from 40%. That debt declined a little in the Clinton years, but, in this century, even as a percentage of GDP, it has more than doubled.

These are extremely dangerous trends. The average American is aware of a 15-year flat-lined income in terms of buying power, and the absence of job security despite an official level of unemployment of a very acceptable 4.7%. Most would know, from their own experiences or acquaintances, that the labor force has shrunk, in fact by 15 million people.

There are now over 20 million Americans of prime employment age (25 to 54) who have dropped out and are sustained by the benefit system, especially Medicaid-supplied painkillers, food stamps, and activities that generally escape official compilation. Many of these are among the 750,000 people released each year by the bloated and corrupt prison system, which does all it can to demotivate, stigmatize, and render unemployable those released — and make more likely the return to its embrace. The system in any case always imprisons at least as many new convicts each year.

If the Trump administration does not get a tax bill through that rekindles economic expansion, the entire American project is going to face its greatest crisis since Roosevelt came in to grapple with the Great Depression.
President Trump has proposed tax changes — simplification, rate reductions, elimination of special exemptions, patriation of overseas corporate profits — that will induce a recovery and reverse 30 years of declining economic growth.

More at link:
228  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Thomas Sowell on the tax cuts for the rich lie on: May 02, 2017, 09:13:24 AM

One societal sickness that we still can't eradicate: Political lies

Thomas Sowell
By Thomas Sowell
Published May 2, 2017 societal sickness that we still can't eradicate: Political lies

A classic example is the phrase "tax cuts for the rich," which is loudly proclaimed by opponents, whenever there is a proposal to reduce tax rates. The current proposal to reduce federal tax rates has revived this phrase, which was disproved by facts, as far back as the 1920s -- and by now should be called "tax lies for the gullible."

How is the claim of "tax cuts for the rich" false? Let me count the ways. More important, you can easily check out the facts for yourself with a simple visit to your local public library or, for those more computer-minded, on the Internet.

One of the key arguments of those who oppose what they call "tax cuts for the rich" is that the Reagan administration tax cuts led to huge federal government deficits, contrary to "supply side economics" which said that lower tax rates would lead to higher tax revenues.

This reduces the whole issue to a question about facts -- and the hard facts are available in many places, including a local public library or on the Internet.

The hardest of these hard facts is that the revenues collected from federal income taxes during every year of the Reagan administration were higher than the revenues collected from federal income taxes during any year of any previous administration.

How can that be? Because tax RATES and tax REVENUES are two different things. Tax rates and tax revenues can move in either the same direction or in opposite directions, depending on how the economy responds.

But why should you take my word for it that federal income tax revenues were higher than before during the Reagan administration? Check it out.

Official statistics are available in many places. The easiest way to find those statistics is to go look at a copy of the annual "Economic Report of the President." It doesn't have to be the latest Report under President Trump. It can be a Report from any administration, from the Obama administration all the way back to the administration of the elder George Bush.

Each annual "Economic Report of the President" has the history of federal revenues and expenditures, going back for decades. And that is just one of the places where you can get this data. The truth is readily available, if you want it. But, if you are satisfied with political rhetoric, so be it.

Before we turn to the question of "the rich," let's first understand the implications of higher income tax revenues after income tax rates were cut during the Reagan administration.

That should have put an end to the talk about how lower tax rates reduce government revenues and therefore tax cuts need to be "paid for" or else there will be rising deficits. There were in fact rising deficits in the 1980s, but that was due to spending that outran even the rising tax revenues.

Congress does the spending, and there is no amount of money that Congress cannot outspend.

As for "the rich," higher-income taxpayers paid more -- repeat, MORE tax revenues into the federal treasury under the lower tax rates than they had under the previous higher tax rates.

That happened not only during the Reagan administration, but also during the Coolidge administration and the Kennedy administration before Reagan, and under the G.W. Bush administration after Reagan. All these administrations cut tax rates and received higher tax revenues than before.

More than that, "the rich" not only paid higher total tax revenues after the so-called "tax cuts for the rich," they also paid a higher percentage of all tax revenues afterwards. Data on this can be found in a number of places, including documented sources listed in my monograph titled "'Trickle Down' Theory and 'Tax Cuts for the Rich.'"

As a source more congenial to some, a front-page story in the New York Times on July 9, 2006 -- during the Bush 43 administration -- reported, "An unexpectedly steep rise in tax revenues from corporations and the wealthy is driving down the projected budget deficit this year." Expectations, of course, are in the eye of the beholder.

Thomas Sowell, a National Humanities Medal winner, is an American economist, social theorist, political philosopher and author. He is currently Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University.
229  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Economics, Reynold's Law, Don't increase the middle class by subisidizing it on: May 01, 2017, 08:13:38 PM
Judge every Democrat proposal to help or expand the "Middle Class" with this in mind...

"The government decides to try to increase the middle class by subsidizing things that middle class people have: If middle-class people go to college and own homes, then surely if more people go to college and own homes, we’ll have more middle-class people. But homeownership and college aren’t causes of middle-class status, they’re markers for possessing the kinds of traits — self-discipline, the ability to defer gratification, etc. — that let you enter, and stay, in the middle class. Subsidizing the markers doesn’t produce the traits; if anything, it undermines them."
230  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of the Republicans on: May 01, 2017, 03:02:05 PM
GM:  " worthless."

And while thinking these thoughts, the RNC called me for money today.

They got an earful.  I don't think money is what they need right now.
231  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Tax Policy - Bush Tax Rate Cuts EXPLODED Revenues - 60% Surge! on: May 01, 2017, 12:49:01 PM
Besides ignoring JFK and Reagan, the left and the media, I repeat myself, keep lying about the Bush 'tax cuts'.  Under JFK, 90% rates made it easy to grow the economy and grow revenues by lowering rates, but most noteworthy was the pure, supply side rhetoric of the young, popular Democratic President.  Under Reagan, revenues doubled in a decade and deficits came from the delays to the cuts and even faster growth of spending in compromise with the Tip O'Neill House.

Under Bush, the US economy eventually imploded when it became known with certainty that the Bush tax RATE cuts were ending, when Pelosi-Reid-Obama-HRC and Biden took control of Washington and congress promising tax rate increases.  Besides the impending ending of tax rate cuts, we made all kinds of other economic policy errors, from the Fed's free money to the CRAp that required lenders to make bad loans.

Great article today (below) documenting what I have been trying to say on these pages.

Do you even know anyone who knows that revenues surged 60% in 4 years under the Bush tax cuts?  Does Chuck Todd at Meet the dePressed or John Dickerson at deFace the Nation know that? Has either ever said that?  They say 'blow up the deficit' without being able to do simple arithmetic or memory recall of basic numbers from the very recent past.  (Or do they deceive intentionally?)

Here are the facts:

In 2002, the top income tax rates for individuals was 38.6% on ordinary income and dividends and 21.2% on capital gains. George W. Bush got Congress to lower taxes across the board and the top bracket to 35% on ordinary income and 15% on dividends and capital gains. (Bush had inherited a recession and a collapsed stock market in 2001 and the economy had been stagnant or slowing up to these tax cuts).

Instead of the tax rate cuts costing the government money, revenues skyrocketed.

From FY 2000 to FY 2003 income tax proceeds had declined from around $1.2 Trillion to around $900 Billion in FY 2003. After the across the board cuts, income tax revenues skyrocketed over 60% to over $1.5 Trillion by FY 2007. The deficit also went down to $161 Billion by FY 2007, including both wars and Medicare Part D. Obviously, the tax rate cuts and the increasing revenue did not increase the deficit as we are repeatedly told.

The tax cuts gave the economy the boost that it needed. It is an extremely simple concept that the more money that is left in the hands of individuals and businesses, the more opportunity there is to spend, save and invest -- and all are good for the overall economy. It is also a simple concept that the more money the government confiscates, the less opportunity there is for growth.

As for jobs, in January 2001 when President Bush took office, there were 132.7 million non- farm workers. By May 2003, when Bush passed the tax cuts, employment had dropped to 130.2 million. At the end of 2007, employment had jumped to 138.4 Million. If employment was trending down before the cuts and jumped substantially after the tax cuts occurred it certainly appears that there is both a correlation and causation related to the tax rate cuts as to the significant boost to the economy.
232  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / 2016 Presidential, Mexico will pay for the wall was a stupid thing to say on: May 01, 2017, 12:14:16 PM
Trump had 18 months to think about how he will do this as he was promising it and has had 100 days to parse what he said any way he wants and tell us how it can be done. He could even tell us he was wrong, gasp!  Instead we have no funding for a wall or even a fence because he never told us it is worth investing our money to do it.
233  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Cognitive Dissonance of the Republicans, "A good day for Democrats" on: May 01, 2017, 12:04:15 PM
Famous people caught reading the forum, Rush Limbaugh opened his program making the same point.

"That's why I don't get too close to them", he said.  

Likewise.  I support policies and philosophies, not people or parties.  My choice of policies is never supported by Democrats or Centrists, but it is also rarely advanced by the Republicans either, in spite of their occasional supportive words.

Instead of finding 5-10% to disagree on and getting nothing done, Republicans need to find 80% to agree on and get it done.  Now.

Everything we say in foreign policy gets lost in domestic policy.  Appease and fear your enemies and they are emboldened making everything else you will do harder and more costly.  So we cave on all the demands of Chuck Schumer, and that will bring him to the table on WHAT?  Nothing.

I could not care less about a government shutdown or "non-essential" services.  I care about political consequences, but only if it is rightfully blamed on our side.  How could it be?  Only if we roll over and play dead.

The wall was not worth fighting over?  To Trump??  Planned Parenthood, sanctuary cities, not worth fighting over?  Excessive spending is not worth fighting over?  What happened to that budget Pres. Trump just released that cut spending 20%?  Showmanship?  How about 1% of those cuts just to prove it's possible?  Prove we had an election.  How about tying their spending to our tax reform?  It isn't ready?  We need more time to debate it?  Bullshit.  We need to get it right and pass it.

Our side is not ready to govern - and their side wants to destroy the country.  

Lousy choice.
234  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Venezuela news live on: May 01, 2017, 11:42:08 AM
A group of government supporters just went by my house (11 AM local time) and they were greeted by pot-banging. There were not enough of them to fill a city block!

I hope they don't know where you live.
235  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Will 2020 Be Another 1972 for Democrats? By Victor Davis Hanson on: May 01, 2017, 10:42:23 AM
"So far, the similarities are eerie."

"if in 2020 Democrats go hard left as they did in 1972, then they will likely lose just as big."
236  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / NY Time editorial page rips Obama for cashing in on his Presidency on: May 01, 2017, 10:33:47 AM
Calling this the left rather than the media where no distinction exists, it is quite humorous to see how gentle they can be while daring to criticize the master.

"we have the audacity to hope he’ll set a higher standard for past presidents"

What did he EVER do that set a higher standard for ANYTHING?  Keep your health plan, stopping Iran from going nuclear, the Madrid trip, flying the family dog on a separate plane to Martha's vineyard, Benghazi was the result of a video, Iraq was his greatest accomplishment, marriage is between a man and a woman, IRS targeting, and bugging his successor.  Set a 'higher' standard sounds like cannabis joke from the choomg gang.
237  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of the Republicans on: May 01, 2017, 10:00:53 AM
Republicans won the the House, the Senate, and now the White House.  100 days in, we have a budget with Republican fingerprints all over it.  The government is funded.  Planned parenthood is funded.  The wall is not.  Obamacare is fully in place and the tax system is the one that Bill Ayers, Saul Alinski and Jeremiah Wright's protege put in place for us, working with Pelosi and Reid.

Elections have consequences?  Depends.
238  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Minneapolis on: May 01, 2017, 09:53:01 AM
A racist, an environmentalist, and a jihadist walk into a government building in Minneapolis.

The security guard says, "Good Morning, Madam Mayor".
239  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: National Geographic: now another liberal rag on: May 01, 2017, 08:59:06 AM
Strange to live in a world where the Scientific American, National Geographic and New England Journal of Medicine have all been destroyed by leftism.

Having control of all the networks and major newspapers, and Google and Facebook, is not enough; now they are taking over Fox news too.  You have to find conservative media by word of mouth.  Yet people still seem to know the left is wrong.  Dems and leftism has lost 10 points or more of support in many states since the last leftist takeover.
240  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Representative Keith Ellison; Invitation to the Heartland withdrawn on: April 28, 2017, 12:19:04 PM
One point I've made about Keith Ellison seeking national office is that I have never seen evidence he has set foot in a red state or even a red county.

At the risk of standing corrected, he was invited to speak to the Democrats in South Dakota (unicorn convention?), but that invitation has been rescinded so I stand by my accusation.
I’m not sure if they want to hide the fact that their keynote speaker Keith Ellison has said that a 63 Percent Tax Rate is “Fair,” and they’re afraid that it could see print in the Argus Leader or Rapid City Journal.

Or that a KELOland reporter might note to the audience that Ellison gave a speech defending Sara Jane Olson, a Domestic Terrorist and attempted Cop Murderer.

Or it could be that Ellison stated that he believes the Democrat Party should come out against the Second Amendment, and Democrats are afraid how that’s going to look for their party in South Dakota when it appears in every weekly newspaper in the state?

More at the links:
241  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: 1Q slower growth on: April 28, 2017, 12:03:01 PM
"The deep state may well be trying to bring the crash on Trump's watch."

For sure, Yellen was not going to risk any damage on Obama's watch.
242  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: 1Q slower growth on: April 28, 2017, 11:32:07 AM

"The economy barely grew, expanding at an annual rate of only 0.7 percent."

Let's see...  Keep Obamacare, the biggest tax and regulation takeover in history, in place.  Keep the Obama, Reid, Pelosi tax system fully in place.  Watch Democrat Fed Chair Yellen raise interest rates based on this 'robust recovery' she sees.  And see economic growth hit zero.

What's that?  Did I just hear Brian Wesbury say Doug was right?? 
243  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Tax Policy. Dirksen. Kasich. 1980s US Budget History on: April 28, 2017, 10:48:16 AM
" Dirk Everetson (sp?)?"
Everet Dirkson?

Even backwards, that is a good memory!

“Don’t tax you, don’t tax me, tax that fellow behind the tree.” This quote is attributed to the late Sen. Everett Dirksen of Illinois back in the ‘60s when tax issues were the topic in the U.S. Senate.

John Kasich from ccp's post:
"I don't think there's any way they can say 'okay we're gonna cut all these taxes and it's going to pay for itself,'" Kasich, told students at the Ivy League school's Institute of Politics

1. Must note that he is out on big salary talking to Ivy Leaguers, not delivering milk(?) like his Dad.  There goes the champion of the little guy - telling the big guys what they want to hear - for big money!

2.  Any chance he was alive or aware during the 1980s?  Reagan cut the top rate from 70% down to 28% and Revenues to the Treasury doubled over the decade. 

Revenues 1980:  $517,100,000,000    The last year before Reagan took office.
Revenues 1990   1,032,000,000,000   The first full year after Reagan left office, his tax policies still in place.

Rising tide lifts all boats.

3.  Trump with all his warts won more votes and a higher percentage of the vote in the general election in Ohio than Kasich won in the primary with all his hometown advantage, FWIW.

Like McCain opposing tax cuts in 2000, the 'moderates' love to oppose Republican policy and avoid opposing Democrats.  'How can I get NYT and the Ivy Leaguers to like me?'  Note that after the nomination, the msm was nowhere to be seen in support of McCain or any of that ilk, and the left hated Mitt every but as much as they despise Trump.  They hated and mocked Reagan too.  He defeated them with policy wins and economic results, not appeasement.
244  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Tax Policy, Blue State Penalty, Doug's compromise on: April 28, 2017, 09:03:23 AM
"they should tax Democrats and all liberals only"

ccp:  You aren't going to like the 'blue state penalty'.  It doesn't follow your motto above.

Of the big 3 deductions, mortgage interest, charitable giving and state/local taxes, only the first two survived the first draft.

The problem with this has to do with tyranny of the majority and consent of the governed.  The penalty doubly applies to people who live in the blue states but oppose the big government, blue state model.

Take my state for example, please, take it.  Hillary won MN by only 1.5%, down 10 points from Obama's 11.5% win in 2008.  Meanwhile, Republicans won the State House and Senate, while a lame duck sits in the governor's mansion with pen and phone - no new tax cuts.

In one sense, I agree with the proposal.  High income tax states should not get a break on federal taxes just because they tax themselves to death at the state level.  We still need a military, and to fund research on spotted frogs, or whatever the feds do with the $4 trillion we give them.

On the other hand, property taxes can be a very unfair form of taxation.  A homestead property doesn't have a stream of income or revenue to tax or pay a tax from.  The homeowner does, but that is already double taxed progressively on the income side.

Imagine a retired person or couple on a fixed income.  Property taxes go up and up over time; income does not.  The longer you live the more you are unable to live in the house you bought and paid for over your adult lifetimes.  We encourage home ownership for a reason, then we force people out with the other arm of the same big government - right at the point of their life where it is hardest to move.  Why would we value borrowing to buy a house over a person's 'contributions to their local schools and communities.  It makes no sense.

Therefore, Doug's compromise.  Remove the state income tax deduction, but retain the property tax deduction.

While appearing to care and be more fair and inclusive, this will capture vast majority of the revenue IF they really do double the standard deduction.
245  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Tax Policy on: April 28, 2017, 03:50:26 AM

246  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Murders Concentrated in Five Percent of Counties on: April 27, 2017, 07:03:38 PM
"Like anything that doesn't fit with their narrative, they ignore it."

John Lott also has a narrative, "More Guns, Less Crime",,_Less_Crime,
but his data comes from good sources and the conclusions he draws are valid.

It's a burden on us that almost all important points conservative are counter-intuitive.

Guns don't cause murder.  Wealth doesn't cause it.  Poverty doesn't even cause it. 
Murder, at least when it happens as an epidemic, is a culture.
247  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Nature, can you see the venomous snake in this picture? on: April 27, 2017, 04:20:23 PM
248  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Murders Concentrated in Five Percent of Counties on: April 27, 2017, 04:14:31 PM

"areas with the highest gun ownership rates have low murder rates"

"counties with zero murders are the counties with by far the highest gun ownership rates"

Guns don't cause murder?  What do leftist, science deniers say about that?
249  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Islam in Europe, Swedish opposition to immigration grows on: April 27, 2017, 04:09:24 PM
Report: More Swedes want to receive fewer refugees
The more negative attitude towards refugees is one of the major changes in the survey, made during the past autumn and winter. 52 percent supported the proposal to accept fewer refugees, while 24 percent were opposed. When questioned in 2015 "won" refugee opponents barely 40-37.
250  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Activist finds left's silence on genital mutilation case dismaying on: April 27, 2017, 02:53:24 PM
"Imagine what the American left would do if conservative Republican Christians engaged in a barbaric practice to mutilate little girls, to kill off their sexual desire while leaving them fertile when they come of age."

!!  It makes more sense in reverse if you believe what they would like everyone to believe.  Conservatives advance religious liberty to an extreme while liberals care about people, about women, about children.  But no, Muslims, gays, Jews, felons, illegals, SJWs, civil libertarians and general leftists all share a common political allegiance and will go to all lengths to maintain it.

Imagine next if the sides in the abortion debate were reversed, if conservatives liked the welfare reducing effect of persuading poor women to kill off their children under the guise of liberty and choice.  Imagine if liberals saw that these conservatives policies were killing off black unborn babies at 5 times the rate of whites.  The left would be ruthless with those facts and conservatives would be destroyed trying to make the flimsy arguments leftists put forward.

I was having a political argument with a liberal friend who was a former federal prosecutor in the Manhattan US Attorney's office.  A very sharp guy with a sparkle and a smile, I can imagine him making devastatingly persuasive arguments to juries.  But on the political issue at hand he was reduced to making weak, worn out arguments that liberals fall back on to defend the indefensible.  With the facts on my side and me floundering, I generously offered that he switch sides with me.  It would have been a treat to see him make the case that should have been so easy to make.

Liberals have the skills in messaging; conservatives usually have the facts quietly on their side, but can't make their case.  The case against mutilating young girls, if you're going to have any limit on any behavior, should be an easy one.
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