Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Monday, August 11, 2014

Paul Krugman: In the latest Times Magazine, Robert Draper profiled youngish libertarians -- roughly speaking, people who combine free-market economics with permissive social views -- and asked whether we might be heading for a "libertarian moment." Well, probably not. Polling suggests that young Americans tend, if anything, to be more supportive of the case for a bigger government than their elders. But I'd like to ask a different question: Is libertarian economics at all realistic? The answer is no. And the reason can be summed up in one word: phosphorus.

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There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged.

One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world.

The other, of course, involves orcs.

-- John Rogers

#1 | Posted by Tor at 2014-08-11 05:50 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 4

I throw the BS flag on both the article and the first comment.

Libertarians are guilty of the same misguided thinking as the demos and the repubs.

Everyone thinks that there is no limit to how much can be spent, and they convince themselves that their pet project is essential.

What a trillion dollar fighter jet? No problem. Want to bail out corporations and banks? No problem. Want to elevate poor peoples standard of living above working people? No problem. Vwant to give trillions to countries like israel? Yes, of course.

I would like to see each group detail how they would either raise revenue or cut spending to make the numbers work out. Ibguarantee you, the liberatarian one would piss off the most people and it would be most correct.

#2 | Posted by kudzu at 2014-08-11 06:07 PM | Reply | Flag:

You can throw the flag after you read the article, which you clearly didn't.

#3 | Posted by Harry_Powell at 2014-08-11 06:30 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 5

A real libertarian would be against the corporate person, would abolish all intellectual monopoly, and would end the war on drugs. These people have no interest what so ever in reducing state power. They want to keep the masses from challenging it by opposing legislation to limit that power(water regulations). i.e. they are fascists who want to smoke dope.

#4 | Posted by Shawn at 2014-08-11 06:31 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

Libertarianism is appealing because its SIMPLE. People can say they've found the solution and then stop listening to other more complex ideas.

It's also never been tried - so they can say it would work great, simply because no one has seen a libertarian system collapse, simply because one has never existed. They get to have this wonderful perfectly functioning ideal that would work great if only we listened to them.

#5 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-11 06:33 PM | Reply | Flag:

But the idea that we have a vastly bigger and more intrusive government than we need is a foolish fantasy.

LOL!
That's why we run a trillion dollar deficit every year! What a crackpot.

#6 | Posted by Huguenot at 2014-08-11 06:46 PM | Reply | Flag:

!
That's why we run a trillion dollar deficit every year! What a crackpot.

#6 | Posted by Huguenot

We run a deficit because we allow the rich who've gotten the most from america to keep everything for themselves. It's called reaganomics, and it's great if you're rich, and terrible if you're not or if you don't like deficits.

#7 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-11 07:10 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

Libertarianism is also appealing because its not the Republican brand nor the Tea Party brand... but you can still be crazy as a ....house rat.

#8 | Posted by Corky at 2014-08-11 07:12 PM | Reply | Flag: | Funny: 1

#5 by that same token, it never having been tried allows clowns like Krugman to say how crappy it is without fear of having anyone provide an example of its success.

#9 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2014-08-11 07:19 PM | Reply | Flag:

We run a deficit because we allow the rich who've gotten the most from america to keep everything for themselves. It's called reaganomics, and it's great if you're rich, and terrible if you're not or if you don't like deficits.

#7 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-11 07:10 PM | Reply | Flag:

OK Nancy I see, we don't have a spending problem - we have a paying for problem.

Well that paying for problem is irresponsible and unpatriotic. In fact, we're taking out a credit card from the bank of China in our children's name. But let's continue to be unpatriotic and irresponsible.

#10 | Posted by Huguenot at 2014-08-11 07:40 PM | Reply | Flag:

Well that paying for problem is irresponsible and unpatriotic. In fact, we're taking out a credit card from the bank of China in our children's name. But let's continue to be unpatriotic and irresponsible.

#10 | Posted by Huguenot

We used to pay for things just fine. It was REAGAN who said tax breaks for the rich are more important than balancing the budget. He put those tax breaks on the nation's credit card, and now that it's maxed out, everyone wants to blame obama.

#11 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-11 07:53 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 5

we're taking out a credit card from the bank of China....

Grow up, will you. China owns ONLY 8 PERCENT of the US' debt.

Does that sound like the bankruptcy of our children's future for their credit card? If you're not going to speak intelligently about our economy, please let other people have rational discussions without emotionally charged, bogus rightwing talking points polluting them.

#12 | Posted by tonyroma at 2014-08-11 08:05 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 3

LOL
It was Reagan...
Actually, if the size and scope of government was closer to what it was when Reagan was elected we probably could pay for it now.

#13 | Posted by Huguenot at 2014-08-11 08:06 PM | Reply | Flag:

Grow up, will you. China owns ONLY 8 PERCENT of the US' debt.

Does that sound like the bankruptcy of our children's future for their credit card? If you're not going to speak intelligently about our economy, please let other people have rational discussions without emotionally charged, bogus rightwing talking points polluting them.

#12 | Posted by tonyroma at 2014-08-11 08:05 PM | Reply | Flag:

OUCH!
I was only repeating Obama campaign tripe! Sheesh

#14 | Posted by Huguenot at 2014-08-11 08:16 PM | Reply | Flag:

The devil is always in the details. Pronouncements like Krugman's are a reflection of real fear. Lib/progressives hate Libertarians because of their insistence on financial realism and limited government. Neocons and conservatives hate them because of their policy of disengagement and ending the war on drugs. Well, the times are a'changing, Libertarians are going to get their wish, eventually. The progressive/fascist nanny state has has peeked under Obama, the Neocon/fascist robber barrons peeked under Bush II. We ain't got nothing to show for ether administration but failure and debt, especially for BHO. Maybe the Libertarians can hobble together some policies that work. I can already hear the fear wrangling from the left and right. One is saying that these guys are going to take away those precious entitlements and limiting the enforcement power of the federal agencies, the other is saying that these guys are isolationist and retreating from our challenges abroad, plus want every one to get high any time and any way they want. I think they are both correct. But I haven't heard any bright ideas coming from those in power.

#15 | Posted by docnjo at 2014-08-11 08:32 PM | Reply | Flag:

#14

Touche, tripe it is and always has been.

#16 | Posted by tonyroma at 2014-08-11 08:35 PM | Reply | Flag:

LOL
It was Reagan...
Actually, if the size and scope of government was closer to what it was when Reagan was elected we probably could pay for it now.

#13 | Posted by Huguenot

Right, because our population and economy is the same as it was in 1980, right genius?

#17 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-11 08:35 PM | Reply | Flag:

Actually, if the size and scope of government was closer to what it was when Reagan was elected we probably could pay for it now.
#13 | Posted by Huguenot

Or just raise capital gains tax rates back to the levels when Reagan left office. That would probably work too.

#18 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-11 08:37 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

Good thing I read this article by Krugman, otherwise I never would have realized the overwhelming virtues of being centrally controlled. Because only businesses behave badly. Governments never do.

#19 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-11 09:11 PM | Reply | Flag:

Because only businesses behave badly. Governments never do.

#19 | Posted by madbomber

We can throw out our government when they behave badly.

We can't even throw a business in jail.

#20 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-11 09:16 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

"Or just raise capital gains tax rates back to the levels when Reagan left office. That would probably work too."

Or just raise the federal income tax on the lowest tax bracket to the levels when Reagan left office. That would probably work too.

#21 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-11 09:16 PM | Reply | Flag:

17
I'm just talking about a percentage of GDP, Nancy,
Federal spending as a portion of GDP is 5 percent higher than it was when Reagan was in office. That's 850 billion per year which is about what our deficits are.

#22 | Posted by Huguenot at 2014-08-11 09:17 PM | Reply | Flag:

"We can throw out our government when they behave badly."

What if they don't want to go?

"We can't even throw a business in jail."

That would be difficult. You might want to go after those in the business who make the decisions. It worked with Enron.

#23 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-11 09:19 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Federal spending as a portion of GDP is 5 percent higher than it was when Reagan was in office. That's 850 billion per year which is about what our deficits are."

Buying votes ain't cheap...

#24 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-11 09:20 PM | Reply | Flag:

Or just raise the federal income tax on the lowest tax bracket to the levels when Reagan left office. That would probably work too.

#21 | Posted by madbomber

Right wing logic - balance the budget with money from people who have none, instead of the people who have ALL OF IT.

#25 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-11 09:21 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

Open borders is extremely libertarian

#26 | Posted by Huguenot at 2014-08-11 09:28 PM | Reply | Flag:

Or just raise the federal income tax on the lowest tax bracket to the levels when Reagan left office. That would probably work too.
#21 | Posted by madbomber

Lowest tax bracket, you say?
The bottom 60% has 2.3% of the wealth,
www.drudge.com
How much of that 2.3% do you think will need to be redistributed to get us out of the red?

#27 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-11 09:36 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Right wing logic - balance the budget with money from people who have none, instead of the people who have ALL OF IT."

This is what distinguishes you as a progressive, the notion that the poor have no responsibility to care for themselves, and that those who do earn an income have the responsibility not only to pay for themselves, but to pay for those who don't. I guess somebody has to pay for the votes you buy.

When people, probably not unlike yourself, fail to recognize when pointing out the historically higher tax rates on the top bracket, they conveniently ignore the fact that bottom brackets were always higher as well. GBW cut taxes on the bottom earners by 33%. Five percentage points. He cut the top bracket by 12%.

As a progressive, you already have a distorted notion of fair, but for the more objective members of our species, having a class of income earners who support everyone else, well, isn't going to seem fair. In the same way that slavery wasn't fair. And paying for the goods and services this country consumes is the responsibility -RESPONSIBILITY- of all members of society.

"Open borders is extremely libertarian"

Mobility of Labor is a pillar of the free market. The only question is whether the immigrants are here for work, or to enter the roles as a future democrat voter in a system that was already saturated with votes. After all, what a better way to tip the scales than to create new voters where they didn't previously exist?

#28 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-11 09:41 PM | Reply | Flag:

"How much of that 2.3% do you think will need to be redistributed to get us out of the red?"

Your numbers are incorrect. But we should consider the source, eh.

-The top 20% of households ($100k per year, 2007$) earn 50% of total earnings

-The bottom 80% earned the other 50%. about 3.8 trillion dollars.

But Bernie Sanders has an election to win! Mistruths must be presented as fact! And when Bernie Sanders makes the claim that healthcare is a R-I-G-H-T, I'm going to hazard a guess that he'll conveniently forget to mention whose "responsibility" it is to provide that "right."

Once again, another progressive holding the position that rights flow freely. Almost as if they come from a mountain stream. Certainly not connected to any notion of responsibility.

#29 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-11 09:56 PM | Reply | Flag:

This is what distinguishes you as a progressive, the notion that the poor have no responsibility to care for themselves, and that those who do earn an income have the responsibility not only to pay for themselves, but to pay for those who don't.

#28 | Posted by madbomber

What distinguishes you as a republican is you have to assign false positions to your opponents.

Everyone who can care for themselves should. But the more success you get from america, the more you owe america. Contrary to the right wing fiction, you did NOT get rich on your own.

#30 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-11 09:57 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

Once again, another progressive holding the position that rights flow freely. Almost as if they come from a mountain stream. Certainly not connected to any notion of responsibility.
#29 | Posted by madbomber

Seeing as I've stated repeatedly that rights come from a government committed to your having them, I have to ask if you have suffered a blow to the head recently?

#31 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-11 09:58 PM | Reply | Flag:

-The top 20% of households ($100k per year, 2007$) earn 50% of total earnings

-The bottom 80% earned the other 50%. about 3.8 trillion dollars.

Sanders referenced wealth. You referenced earnings, and it's not clear if you are just talking about income from wage and salaries or if that includes capital gains or dividends. Also, your earnings add up to $7.6T or roughly half of annual GDP. Presumably non-household earnings account for the other half; should those earnings be tapped?

You want to know who it makes sense to ask to carry this load? The top performers. For the same reason you play your starters and keep your second-stringers on the bench. Right now we're resting our top players; presumably some sort of play-off is on the horizon...

Who are our top performers, anyway? "Since 1975, practically all the gains in household income have gone to the top 20% of households. Since 1996, dividends and capital gains have grown faster than wages or any other category of after-tax income." www.cia.gov

#32 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-11 10:05 PM | Reply | Flag:

GM and every drug company have proved over and over again that if its cheaper to kill people than fix something or take it off the market, they will kill people. Killing people is just another cost to them. In this way Libertarianism violates our founding principles.

#33 | Posted by nutcase at 2014-08-11 10:05 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

"What distinguishes you as a republican is you have to assign false positions to your opponents."

I'm not a republican. I find their authoritarian tendencies almost as disgusting as yours. Of course Republicans have a much more limited number of groups they want to control.

"But the more success you get from america, the more you owe america. Contrary to the right wing fiction, you did NOT get rich on your own."

Or is it the more America gets from you, the more America owes you? If not, why?

Again, you starting from a subjective position where you are correct while others are not. Bill gates does not owe anything more to America that the Microsoft products his customers purchase. He's already provided what he owes, and been given what is owed to him. Beyond that, he owes no more than any other member of society.

"Contrary to the right wing fiction, you did NOT get rich on your own."

Bill gates got rich selling to people. It was his customers who made him rich. Not some ambiguous third party who you feel should have arbitrary claim to wealth he has earned, while they themselves provide nothing.

"Seeing as I've stated repeatedly that rights come from a government committed to your having them, I have to ask if you have suffered a blow to the head recently?"

The right to free healthcare doesn't come from government. It comes from doctors. It's just the government who puts the gun to their head and makes them work for free.

#34 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-11 10:06 PM | Reply | Flag:

The right to free healthcare doesn't come from government. It comes from doctors. It's just the government who puts the gun to their head and makes them work for free.
#34 | Posted by madbomber

Please find me the pictures of doctors in Denmark with guns being held to their heads by government agents.

Alternatively, you could simply admit what you just said is remarkably stupid.

#35 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-11 10:09 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 2

"Sanders referenced wealth. You referenced earnings, and it's not clear if you are just talking about income from wage and salaries or if that includes capital gains or dividends."

Federal income tax. You know, the thing we were talking about in previous posts?

"Who are our top performers, anyway?"

Skilled workers with advanced degrees. That's the one thing almost every one of high income workers is going to have. But in reality, the markets themselves have become more competitive. Salaries for all scarce talent continue to go up, be they professional athletes, actors, musicians, CEOs, authors, scientists, etc.

At the same time, there has been a massive decrease in demand for non-scare labor, much of which is low/unskilled. Sorta predictable, don't you think?

#36 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-11 10:10 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Please find me the pictures of doctors in Denmark with guns being held to their heads by government agents."

Here's the thing about rights that you don't quite get. They cannot be abrogated. So, if the government of country X says that healthcare is a right, then they are also saying that a doctor somewhere has the responsibility to produce that right. Regardless of whether or not the doctor wants to do it or not. That's really why healthcare can never be a right. Because the government's obligation is contingent upon conditions it has no control over, such as the willingness of a doctor to do what they're told.

It would be better to frame free government healthcare as being along the lines of the postal service or the fire department. They're taxpayer funded services, but not rights. If the mailman doesn't deliver my mail, my rights have not been violated. But if you frame healthcare as a right, and a doctor doesn't provide it to me, then my rights have been violated, all other things being equal.

So, hopefully you now have a better understanding of the difference between rights and government services.

#37 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-11 10:17 PM | Reply | Flag:

So, if the government of country X says that healthcare is a right, then they are also saying that a doctor somewhere has the responsibility to produce that right. Regardless of whether or not the doctor wants to do it or not. That's really why healthcare can never be a right.

Cool, now do trial by jury.

#38 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-11 10:18 PM | Reply | Flag:

Bill gates got rich selling to people. It was his customers who made him rich. Not some ambiguous third party who you feel should have arbitrary claim to wealth he has earned, while they themselves provide nothing.

#34 | Posted by madbomber

Bill gates got rich selling things, using PUBLIC ROADS, hiring people that were educated in PUBLIC SCHOOLS, in a system held together by PUBLIC SAFETY... it goes on and on.

He used a TON of public resources to get as rich as he did, and therefore he OWES a ton back to the public.

I'm not subjugated to anything, I'm just not so arrogant and egocentric to think I don't owe anybody anything, or that my success is a great gift unto my society. And I'm intelligent to realize that I'm a part of a society, which only functions if people support it. A bunch of independent beings would never have crawled out of their caves. That's why the conservative mentality is so prehistoric. Me me me and mine.

#39 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-11 10:19 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 4

Inherited wealth is impossible to beat. Time inside Capitalism always trumps clever or lucky. The Waltons are just the latest proof of in a long line of examples which far outnumber the self made man.

#40 | Posted by nutcase at 2014-08-11 10:19 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

At the same time, there has been a massive decrease in demand for non-scare labor, much of which is low/unskilled. Sorta predictable, don't you think?
#36 | Posted by madbomber

The massive decrease is demand for non-scarce labor seems to be matched with a massive increase in how much you think they should be taxed.

Can you explain why you think low and unskilled labor, whose income is stagnant at best owing to declining demand for their labor, ought to be taxed more? Because I'm not understanding how you think this adds up. As best I can tell, you simply assume it should be done because it seems to you to be the most fair. The part where it actually works hasn't yet been addressed.

#41 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-11 10:22 PM | Reply | Flag:

Bill Gates bought an operating system developed with public funds, and turned it into a monopoly, always the perfect Capitalist plot.

#42 | Posted by nutcase at 2014-08-11 10:24 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 5

So, if the government of country X says that healthcare is a right, then they are also saying that a doctor somewhere has the responsibility to produce that right.

Well, in this country we have freedom of the press.

What number do I dial to get the G-men to force the New York Times to publish my manifesto, like they did the Unabomber?

I'm glad that you've moved away from last year's "only remaining man on earth" conceptualization of what rights are. Unfortunately, your latest attempt to explain to yourself what rights are isn't looking any more sensible.

#43 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-11 11:11 PM | Reply | Flag:

Unfortunately, your latest attempt to explain to yourself what rights are isn't looking any more sensible.

#43 | POSTED BY SNOOFY

How do you define rights?

I am curious - not necessarily being contrarian.

#44 | Posted by JeffJ at 2014-08-11 11:40 PM | Reply | Flag:

JeffJ good evening.

I've never given it a lot of thought as to how I'd define rights. But I suppose I would try to quantity rights as guarantees of conduct and adherence to minimum standards within a society.

#45 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 12:14 AM | Reply | Flag:

en.wikipedia.org

Rights are legal, social, or ethical principles of freedom or entitlement; that is, rights are the fundamental normative rules about what is allowed of people or owed to people, according to some legal system, social convention, or ethical theory.[1] Rights are of essential importance in such disciplines as law and ethics, especially theories of justice and deontology.

Rights are often considered fundamental to civilization, being regarded as established pillars of society and culture,[2] and the history of social conflicts can be found in the history of each right and its development. According to the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, "rights structure the form of governments, the content of laws, and the shape of morality as it is currently perceived."[1]

#46 | Posted by LarryMohr at 2014-08-12 01:21 AM | Reply | Flag:

What an elegant, artful, and expansive explanation of what I was hoping to convey, thank you.

#47 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 04:04 AM | Reply | Flag:

Rights are those things that one cannot be given, but that can be taken away.

The wiki explanation above confounds rights with laws and/or morals, both of which are created to restrict. Do not confuse rights with moral convention. Rights were the same for cavemen and philosophers, and our founders did a damned fine job of recognizing those inalienable rights: life and freedom.

#48 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2014-08-12 08:29 AM | Reply | Flag:

I disagree, slightly. As pronounced in the declaration of independence, rights do not come from governments, they are given by God. As every individual is responsible for the course of his/her life to the final Judge, any man that usurps that chose is a tyrant. One of the popular sayings during this time: "Opposition to tyranny is obedience to God". I really don't care what religion one has or doesn't have, but we should acknowledge the prospective of of the men who wrote those documents. In their world view, if a man's action did no harm or caused expense to his neighbor, it was his business- not the government's. Let us start using the word they used- Liberty. The word "freedom" is not found in these documents.

#49 | Posted by docnjo at 2014-08-12 08:36 AM | Reply | Flag:

I will concede that point. In fact, your description of the founders' world view:

In their world view, if a man's action did no harm or caused expense to his neighbor, it was his business- not the government's.

is much like my own libertarian-lite philosophy:

I don't care what you do, as long as you hurt nobody but yourself and I don't have to pay for those actions or the consequences of those actions.

Speaks states in #5 that no truly libertarian state has ever been established, which is true when we consider the most extreme fringe of libertarianism, which is anarchy and therefore a government would in and of itself be an anathema. However, an economically libertarian state HAS existed in the past (I can't imagine that Krugman would be addressing the social aspect..he IS an economist). The United States, from inception through the end of WWII, was essentially an economic libertarian powerhouse with little regulation of industry.

#50 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2014-08-12 09:05 AM | Reply | Flag:

"He used a TON of public resources to get as rich as he did, and therefore he OWES a ton back to the public."

Actually, no. Consumers used a ton of public resources to acquire the products Bill gates produced, therefor they OWE a ton back to the public.

See how that works?

"Inherited wealth is impossible to beat."

Inherited wealth is nearly irrelevant. Less than 20% of >millionaires inherited their wealth.

"The massive decrease is demand for non-scarce labor seems to be matched with a massive increase in how much you think they should be taxed."

I would prefer a flat tax. Fairness.

#51 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 09:41 AM | Reply | Flag:

"Actually, no. Consumers used a ton of public resources to acquire the products Bill gates produced, therefor they OWE a ton back to the public."

Baloney! The producer pays for the resources necessary to create their goods, transport their goods, etc. because the producer is the one who profits.

#52 | Posted by danni at 2014-08-12 09:57 AM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

"The United States, from inception through the end of WWII, was essentially an economic libertarian powerhouse with little regulation of industry."

Most preposterous statement ever made on this site. At the end of WWII we had the largest debt as percentage of GDP in our history, including today. Since 1932 we had increasingly enacted Progressive policies and programs which were diametrically opposed to Libertarianism. FDR was the antithesis of Libertarianism. WWII was Keynsian economics on steroids.

#53 | Posted by danni at 2014-08-12 10:05 AM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

Libertarian economics makes alot of sense if you are unfamiliar with the entirety of human history.

#54 | Posted by sully at 2014-08-12 10:08 AM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 2

#53 Do not conflate the debt accrued from fighting two World Wars with regulation of industry, Danni. Yes, starting with FDR the government started social programs, but again, as I stated, I am not talking about social programs. I am speaking of economic policies. With the notable exception of anti-monopoly laws and child labor laws, there were very few regulations in place. FLSA was the first major step, and when did that happen? 1938, at the beginning of WWII. WWII resulted in an enormous, state-funded defense industry, yes...because they were the consumer. It was not Keynesian. They were not investing in industries - they were buying tanks, planes, ships and guns. Go pull up some pictures of the factories churning out those implements of war during that timeframe and see if OSHA and the EPA would have conniption fits today.

#55 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2014-08-12 10:19 AM | Reply | Flag:

Mustang, you're in lala land, we had a maximum income tax rate of 90%, please just don't waste our time with trying to pretend this was a Libertarian paradise at the time.

"It was not Keynesian. They were not investing in industries - they were buying tanks, planes, ships and guns."

It doesn't matter what they were doing, they could have been digging hoses and filling them back in, the money was flowing into the economy, that is what Keynsian economics is.

#56 | Posted by danni at 2014-08-12 10:24 AM | Reply | Flag:

"Go pull up some pictures of the factories churning out those implements of war during that timeframe and see if OSHA and the EPA would have conniption fits today."

Those things came later but do you seen 12 year olds working in those factories, do you see people working 60 hours per week without overtime?
There were labor laws, there was SS, there were Progressive reforms changing what had been a somewhat Libertarian economy pre 1932 and one in which the vast majority of Americans were poor and would always be poor under such a system. Thank God we reformed it, damn Reagan and the GOP for trying to destroy what we finally did.

#57 | Posted by danni at 2014-08-12 10:27 AM | Reply | Flag:

Libertarianism: the party that still plays the hapless victim ----- after 25 years at the table.

Its tailor made for the inexperienced self-serving nature of an immature mind.

For instance, Ron Paul sure walked away with a boat load of money --- having NEVER achieved a single thing towards any libertarian goal.

He walked away with $2,881,564.50 in your tax dollars via a salary alone and never delivered a single thing but hot air, (not including what he now collects annually from taxpayers).

Just goes to show how stupid "libertarians" are.

#58 | Posted by ChiefTutMoses at 2014-08-12 10:40 AM | Reply | Flag:

"Baloney! The producer pays for the resources necessary to create their goods, transport their goods, etc. because the producer is the one who profits."

Actually, the consumer does.

The selling price of a widget includes the cost of production, transportation, marketing, and whatever the company can add as profit. the consumer covers all those costs. If they didn't the widegt would never be produced in the first place. In addition, the consumer will typically drive to the location where they buy the widget, an additional cost that in no way could be attributed to the widget producer.

#59 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 11:08 AM | Reply | Flag:

What a load of deflections. Krugman's central point is that, left unchecked by Government, industry will poison the planet in order to maximize profit. Regulations are needed to prevent this from happening. Therefore, Libertarian premises are incompatible with sustainable life on earth.

#60 | Posted by nutcase at 2014-08-12 11:21 AM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 2

What a load of deflections. Krugman's central point is that, left unchecked by Government, industry will poison the planet in order to maximize profit. Regulations are needed to prevent this from happening. Therefore, Libertarian premises are incompatible with sustainable life on earth.

#60 | POSTED BY NUTCASE

Krugman first starts with a strawman, which is pretty much all he knows. I don't know of any libertarian economist who is advocating for zero government regulations on industry. I certainly don't advocate for zero regs.

If that is truly the argument that Krugman is arguing against than he's arguing with a ghost.

#61 | Posted by JeffJ at 2014-08-12 11:27 AM | Reply | Flag:

Madbomb you once again put all the onus on the consumers but not the corporation. Corporations produce goods and must move them to market to sell them. I didn't ride a horse through the woods to seattle to buy windows it came to me. Had it not I would have used iOS or a version of Linux that did. Getting the product to the consumer is an esential part of the production process. Trying to put the onus on the consmer to get the part from the manufacturer is a good way to run your company into the ground. Perhaps if you product is sips from the fountain of youth you may get away without shipping anything but other than that shipping will be part of the process. Yes it is included in the price of the final good so now not only should we as the consumer pay the cost to ship it in the price of the good but we should also pay the taxes to maintain the shipping routes as well? Sounds like we get to pay twice while the corporation pays not at all.

So I have to ask what exactly is the role of a corporation? They have no responsibility to the nation, the community, their employees, is it only the stock holders they owe anything too? If so why should we as a country protect them? Why should we as a country fight wars to secure the resources they require, build roads to their warehouses, educate their work force? What are we getting out of it?

It seems like, to use the sainted Ayn's words, corporations are moochers.

Chief (not including what he now collects annually from taxpayers).

Paul did not take a government pension so he is not getting anything annually from taxpayers.

I don't care what you do, as long as you hurt nobody but yourself and I don't have to pay for those actions or the consequences of those actions.

I mostly agree with this mustang I would also like to see where no crime could be proved without proof of some harm to a specific person. If you use harm to a specific person as a requirement what would change in our laws? Maybe you can use that as your next big question.

#62 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-08-12 11:46 AM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

JJ,

But that is the point of the article. In another example Greenspan, Geithner and Summers under Rubin, pushed to have the derivatives market deregulated, based on the alleged validity of free market principles. In this successful attempt they came up against Brookley Born who refused to deregulate the derivatives market. As head of the CCEC, she predicted the calamity which ensued precisely. The three Libertarians teamed up against her in Congressional hearings and effected her resignation. The results which followed speak for themselves.

Libertarianism revolves around a belief that free markets are inherently stable, balanced by supply and demand. This is a false premise, without any supporting evidence. Supply and demand is a sinusoidal curve with multiple crossings and solutions. It is inherently unstable and requires Government intervention to maintain stability.

#63 | Posted by nutcase at 2014-08-12 01:44 PM | Reply | Flag:

Tao apparently supports the State of our Union in which Corporations enjoy more rights and privileges than human beings. Corporations cannot be sued by human beings unless the individual can prove harm. But Tim DeChristopher was locked up for 21 months by Federal Prosecutors for placing an invalid bid during an oil lease auction. Ultimately that auction was canceled so there was no harm to the other bidders representing Corporations. Double standard was used to make an example of Tim, as is frequently done against all public protestors such as the nuns that set foot on the property of a nuclear power plant without doing any harm and also were imprisoned.

#64 | Posted by nutcase at 2014-08-12 01:51 PM | Reply | Flag:

I would also like to see where no crime could be proved without proof of some harm to a specific person.

#62 | Posted by TaoWarrior

...but not to people as a group?

#65 | Posted by Whatsleft at 2014-08-12 02:14 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Madbomb you once again put all the onus on the consumers but not the corporation."

Sort of. I was making an extreme counter-argument to Speaksoftly's extreme argument that, since businesses use roads to get their goods to consumers, roads are most beneficial to the business. That's clearly not the case. At best, the roads are mutually beneficial to bother buyer and seller, and Speak's position was simply another argument in favor of taking wealth where wealth can be found.

The bottom line is that tax business is taxing consumers. Whatever the business has to pay will inevitably be passed on to the consumer. You can tax US businesses more, but it's going to affect the consumer's decision calculus, driving them to go with cheap options when they can, such as overseas suppliers. I would submit that as incomes rise overseas, we're going to see a re-emergence of manufacturing in the US. Not as a reuslt of authoritarian policy, but as a result of what's most cost effective for the consumer.

"So I have to ask what exactly is the role of a corporation?"

Dude, you're too smart to fall for this smarmy progressive schtick. Corporations are nothing more than a legal construct for an organization. The Corporation for Public Boradcasting is a Corporation. There are millions of others that are similar. progressives sound retarded when they attack corporations, when they're really going after for-profit businesses. Don't sound retarded.

"Why should we as a country fight wars..."

What war did you fight that ensured Bill Gates had the opportunity to become a billionaire?

#66 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 02:46 PM | Reply | Flag:

Nope if people as a group were truly harmed surely you could show specific harm to one person.

#67 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-08-12 02:46 PM | Reply | Flag:

"I mostly agree with this mustang I would also like to see where no crime could be proved without proof of some harm to a specific person."

Some would say that if my neighbor needs food and I don't feed him, then I am harming my neighbor.

Some would say I am even violating his "rights"...

#68 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 02:48 PM | Reply | Flag:

Sort of. I was making an extreme counter-argument to Speaksoftly's extreme argument that, since businesses use roads to get their goods to consumers, roads are most beneficial to the business.

#66 | Posted by madbomber

I never said that. I said someone who got rich using american infrastructure (including roads, education, and safety) owes a lot of their success, and therefore their wealth, to those that provided that infrastructure. The self-made rich man is a egocentric fantasy, and successful people who try to avoid supporting the society which supported them are ungrateful ------.

#69 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-12 02:52 PM | Reply | Flag:

As pronounced in the declaration of independence, rights do not come from governments, they are given by God.
#49 | Posted by docnjo

This gets to the notion of what rights are. Are rights ideas, or are rights the steps taken by men to put those ideas into action? I tend towards the latter. "Why should anyone have rights?" is not as important to me as "how should we get everyone those rights?"

"We hold these truths to be self-evident" is a philosophical argument as to why rights exist. Technically it's what's called an appeal to authority argument as it goes on to say "endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights."

What their Creator was not was the actual mechanism of conveyance. They fought for their rights to get them; or take them if you prefer. Those installed in the new government wrote laws to ensure those rights to us... and especially to the white land-owning men among us.

Rights were the same for cavemen and philosophers, and our founders did a damned fine job of recognizing those inalienable rights: life and freedom.
#48 | Posted by MUSTANG

Well, the Founders wrote "certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." Thus, those three things are not the exhaustive list. The Founders gave "rights" a much wider berth than you; even as they didn't extend those rights to slaves. See Also: Tenth Amendment.

#70 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 02:59 PM | Reply | Flag:

Some would say that if my neighbor needs food and I don't feed him, then I am harming my neighbor.

Some would say I am even violating his "rights"...
#68 | Posted by madbomber

Nobody here has said that. Have you asked your doctor about the voices in your head?

#71 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 03:00 PM | Reply | Flag:

sorry #66 #67 was to #65.

to #66 Exactly corporations are no more than a legal construct but they are a legal construct which in today's legal system have more power than an individual.

What war did you fight that ensured Bill Gates had the opportunity to become a billionaire?

Now who is being silly maybe not Billy but plenty of wars have been fought to benefit the wealthy to deny that is to deny hundreds of years of history.

#72 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-08-12 03:12 PM | Reply | Flag:

"I would submit that as incomes rise overseas, we're going to see a re-emergence of manufacturing in the US."

Naive to even believe that we are anywhere near such a time because there is so much still unexploited labor available.

#73 | Posted by danni at 2014-08-12 03:15 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

"What war did you fight that ensured Bill Gates had the opportunity to become a billionaire?"

The Korean War, Vietnam War and several war-like activities in S. America and the Caribbean could all be described, and were, as efforts to stop Communism and thus protect the wealth of capitalists like Gates. During the Cold War Communism was thought to be like dominoes which must be stopped or else it would eventually replace our own system.

#74 | Posted by danni at 2014-08-12 03:18 PM | Reply | Flag:

Maybe you can use that as your next big question.

#62 | POSTED BY TAOWARRIOR

I believe I will at that.

#75 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2014-08-12 03:52 PM | Reply | Flag:

First of all Krugman has been historically wrong about everything. www.forbes.com townhall.com www.huffingtonpost.com

There are even entire groups dedicate to documenting his errors. www.luskin.net

The fact that anyone takes anything he writes seriously is idiocy in itself.

From the recession to interest rates to housing collapes (where he declared the market UNDER valued) he has been on the wrong side of even them and ignorant (or purposely ignoring) basic of facts. I find this is consistent. Liberals believe what is written as long as it conforms to thier world view...and never question it.

Conservative tend to say "what are the facts" then see if the ideology fits. In all my time posting here over the years I see plenty of opinion and little actual facts coming from people on the left.

#76 | Posted by foshaffer at 2014-08-12 04:23 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

Corporations cannot be sued by human beings unless the individual can prove harm.

Would it make sense that you could sue when there was no harm?

But Tim DeChristopher was locked up for 21 months by Federal Prosecutors for placing an invalid bid during an oil lease auction.

He violated a law by making false statements, which ruins the fairness of the auction, i.e. harms those that auction within the rules. I put his antics right up there with Bundy's....

I would also like to see where no crime could be proved without proof of some harm to a specific person. If you use harm to a specific person as a requirement what would change in our laws?

So a health code violation isn't a crime unless someone is injured or gets sick? Running a red light isn't a crime unless someone is maimed or injured? Running across the border isn't illegal unless someone is "harmed", how is there "harm" in using the single person using the commuter lane? or insider trading... who is hurt if I buy shares?? ........ we could go on and on.

Laws in someways are a codification of our moral code at this time, it might change. But the codes objective is to create and sustain a successful civilization. The destruction of the code is in some ways accelerates the destruction of our civilization.

#77 | Posted by AndreaMackris at 2014-08-12 04:29 PM | Reply | Flag:

"The self-made rich man is a egocentric fantasy, and successful people who try to avoid supporting the society which supported them are ungrateful ------."

You're right. In order for me to get rich, I must have something that someone else is willing to give me money for. I need that other person in order to get rich. But that other person needs me just as much, to give me money in return for a good or service.

"Nobody here has said that. Have you asked your doctor about the voices in your head?"

You're right. So let's use healthcare instead. Bernie Sanders had said that healthcare is a right. So, doesn't it follow that if I don't provide a person with healthcare, and I have the ability to do so, I am violating his rights?

haven't you pretty much said as much?

"Now who is being silly maybe not Billy but plenty of wars have been fought to benefit the wealthy to deny that is to deny hundreds of years of history."

What about Elon Musk? What wwars are making him rich. Maybe instead of me naming rich people who might have gotten rich from my being in the military, you should name those who did get rich from me being in the miitary. I think it would be easier.

"Naive to even believe that we are anywhere near such a time because there is so much still unexploited labor available."

Actually, there isn't. I know that progressives tend to shy away from objective economic theories, but try this on for size. Improving economic conditions in a developing country lead to and improved standard of living. Increased education, healthcare, services, etc. As they get more, they want more (just think of how this has happened in the US, and later China.) This wanting more results in upward pressure on wages, which makes it less profitable to operate overseas. Even now, countries are considering what the long term prognosis for what their overseas production capability will look like. making the US looking more lucrative than it has in 30 or so years. In fact, manufacturing is already returning to the US.

The Korean War was fought to ensure Bill Gates could get wealthy?

I didn't know his wealth was contingent on a free South Korea...

#78 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 04:30 PM | Reply | Flag:

Bernie Sanders had said that healthcare is a right. So, doesn't it follow that if I don't provide a person with healthcare, and I have the ability to do so, I am violating his rights?
#78 | Posted by madbomber

You're still not disabused of this silly notion after I posted #43? Here it is again:

Well, in this country we have freedom of the press.

What number do I dial to get the G-men to force the New York Times to publish my manifesto, like they did the Unabomber?
#43 | Posted by snoofy

#79 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 04:35 PM | Reply | Flag:

#5 by that same token, it never having been tried allows clowns like Krugman to say how crappy it is without fear of having anyone provide an example of its success

#9 | POSTED BY MUSTANG AT 2014-08-11 07:19 PM | REPLY | FLAG HAS GOT TO BE KIDDING

Of course its been tried. It's the success story called Mexico. And just like Ayn Rand when trash itself with life's excesses... it depends on the US government to bail it out. In the mean time it continues to throw undocumenteds at us when they ask for a raise.

#80 | Posted by RightisTrite at 2014-08-12 04:39 PM | Reply | Flag:

Danni - the domino theory was not that it would replace our own system. Rather it would result in massive amounts of death and near slavery and it was our job to save the people.

Sadly that is exactly what happen after Vietnam. jim.com When hundreds of thousands were executed.

After we left Cambodia fell to the Khmer Rouge and the killing fields happened. Between 1.7 million and 2.2 million people are believed to have died under the Khmer Rouge. The Khmer Rouge was led by the late Pol Pot, who sought to turn Cambodia into a peasant utopia.

www.nytimes.com

www.nbcnews.com

After Cambodia Thailand tettered ..but did not fall. The Domino effect was real and because we did not stand strong millions died and were inslaved. This is the result of the liberal attack on America which we are still suffering from.

Across the globe every place real socialism has been tried has resulted in mass killings and falling economic well being. Russia under Stalin, China under Mao, the ones above and now us. High unemployment, reduction in civil liberties (You cannot say THAT!) Tell you want to drink, and eat (Michele's lunch anyone - no slurpees for YOU) and how to live. If you do not conform we will use the power of the government to come after you (IRS scandal - EPA etc).

#81 | Posted by foshaffer at 2014-08-12 04:49 PM | Reply | Flag:

#79,

Um, I hate to break it to you Snoofster, but I'm pretty sure it's freedom of the press that allows the NYT to not have to publish something they don't want to. But you are free to publish whatever you want. Just remember that you buying a copy of Microsoft Publisher isn't making Bill Gates Rich. It's as much they people who don't buy it that are making him rich. Not really, but that appears to be the prevailing progressive position.

You should try and keep up.

#82 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 05:01 PM | Reply | Flag:

Rather it would result in massive amounts of death and near slavery and it was our job to save the people.

No. It was never about the people. It was always about protecting American business interests. Emphasis added, en.wikipedia.org

President Eisenhower was the first to refer to countries in danger of Communist takeover as dominoes, in response to a journalist's question about Indochina in an April 7, 1954 news conference, though he did not use the term "domino theory".[17] If Communists succeeded in taking over the rest of Indochina, Eisenhower argued, local groups would then have the encouragement, material support and momentum to take over Burma, Thailand, Malaya and Indonesia; all of these countries had large popular Communist movements and insurgencies within their borders at the time.

This would give them a geographical and economic strategic advantage, and it would make Japan, Taiwan, the Philippines, Australia, and New Zealand the front-line defensive states. The loss of regions traditionally within the vital regional trading area of countries like Japan would encourage the front-line countries to compromise politically with communism.

#83 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 05:04 PM | Reply | Flag:

I hate to break it to you Snoofster, but I'm pretty sure it's freedom of the press that allows the NYT to not have to publish something they don't want to
#82 | Posted by madbomber

That's not the point.
This isn't about the New York Times, it's about my rights.
And I have the right to freedom of the press.

Remember, your argument is this: "Doesn't it follow that if I don't provide a person with healthcare, and I have the ability to do so, I am violating his rights?"

The New York Times has a printing press. If they don't provide me with freedom of the press, are they violating my rights?

#84 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 05:10 PM | Reply | Flag:

And, as I asked earlier, now do your right to trial by jury. That right, should you exercise it, surely compels others to serve on your behalf.

I take it you oppose that right?

#85 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 05:22 PM | Reply | Flag:

Snoofy - he was talking about the increase in communism. You take one quote out of context and its gospel? Here are a couple more from IKE:

"Communism and freedom . . . signify two titanic ideas, two ways of life, two totally irreconcilable beliefs in the nature and destiny of man. The one -- freedom -- knows man as a creature of God, blessed with a free and individual destiny, governed by eternal moral and natural laws.

"The second -- Communism -- claims man to be an animal creature of the state, curses him for his stubborn instinct for independence, governs with a tyranny that makes its people saves to the state" Doesn't sound like he was against Communism for business reasons does it.

"Unless we can put things in the hands of people who are starving to death we can never lick Communism." AND "International Communism, of course, seeks to mask its purposes of domination by expressions of good will and by superficially attractive offers of political, economic and military aid. But any free nation, which is the subject of Soviet enticement, ought, in elementary wisdom, to look behind the
mask."

#86 | Posted by foshaffer at 2014-08-12 05:28 PM | Reply | Flag:

Those are PR lines. They're not policy positions.

Just like "We hold these truths to be self-evident" wasn't the reason for the war, but the propaganda you trot out to sell the idea. The actual reasons come later in the Declaration ; it's the long list of grievances against the King.

#87 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 05:34 PM | Reply | Flag:

"That's not the point."

Actually, it is the point.

You made a ------ analogy, but if your position was correct, then by definition the NYT would not have freedom of the press, because they would be forced to "publish" something they didn't want to. You have the ability to publish things yourself. Someone else is not required in order to provide you freedom of the press. Just like if I am a doctor, I don't need someone else to provide me with medical care. I already have that capability within myself.

#88 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 05:34 PM | Reply | Flag:

I'm not saying Communism was good. But you're beyond naive if you think we were motivated to fight Communism because people in Communist nations were suffering.

We fought it because nations that went Communist became hostile places for Americans (Westerners, really) to do business.

#89 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 05:38 PM | Reply | Flag:

"You have the ability to publish things yourself. Someone else is not required in order to provide you freedom of the press."

Put down the bong. No individual can compete with the corporate-run "free press".

#90 | Posted by nullifidian at 2014-08-12 05:39 PM | Reply | Flag:

"The self-made rich man is a egocentric fantasy, and successful people who try to avoid supporting the society which supported them are ungrateful ------."

You're right. In order for me to get rich, I must have something that someone else is willing to give me money for. I need that other person in order to get rich. But that other person needs me just as much, to give me money in return for a good or service.

#78 | Posted by madbomber

And yet you're STILL ignoring that you would never be able to even CREATE or DISTRIBUTE the thing you're selling to your customers without all that SOCIETY has created and provided for you.

As I said - egocentric and ungrateful.

#91 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-12 05:40 PM | Reply | Flag:

You have the ability to publish things yourself.

No I don't. I have no printing press. Do you have one? That would be odd.

Just like if I am a doctor, I don't need someone else to provide me with medical care. I already have that capability within myself.
#88 | Posted by madbomber

Oh please. "The man who is his own lawyer has a fool for a client." If you think the cardiologist tries to treat himself for a skin problem, you might as well just admit you're trolling.

#92 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 05:41 PM | Reply | Flag:

Just like if I am a doctor, I don't need someone else to provide me with medical care. I already have that capability within myself.
#88 | Posted by madbomber

What happens when you're debilitated in an accident? You still think you can care for yourself? What if you need the services of an anesthesiologist, an orthopedic surgeon, and nurses to keep an eye on you 24x7?

You've been trolling us this whole time, haven't you? It's the most logical explanation.

You still haven't address trial by jury, by the way. Have at it, troll.

#93 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 05:49 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Put down the bong. No individual can compete with the corporate-run "free press".

So freedom of the press not only consists of your right to publish something, but your right to have it mass marketed, released to public exposure, presented to the entire nation, etc.

I guess my right to free speech is currently being violated by not making the rest of you line up and listen to me, eh?

"And yet you're STILL ignoring that you would never be able to even CREATE or DISTRIBUTE the thing you're selling to your customers without all that SOCIETY has created and provided for you."

You mean those same things that society would never be able to purchase and procure if it weren't for everything that society has created for them?

I think it's you who doesn't understand. At best, the benefits of infrastructure, defense, etc, are shared between buyer and seller, and everyone else for that matter. It's utterly retarded to say that sellers owe something to society other than the goods they sell. It's like saying buyers owe something to society other than the money the use to buy with. Both use roads, airports, harbors, etc, to complete the value chain.

"As I said - egocentric and ungrateful."

I guess I should be more appreciative of what you have done for me. if it weren't for you. I might not have this computer to type on. How much do I owe you?

#94 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 06:31 PM | Reply | Flag:

So freedom of the press not only consists of your right to publish something, but your right to have it mass marketed, released to public exposure, presented to the entire nation, etc.

You've argued that's what a right to health care means.

Keep arguing with yourself. It's like a dog running in circles. Once you do actually catch your own tail, what were you planning on doing with it?

Maybe that will be your cue to state your principled opposition to trial by jury, since it compels others to act on your behalf.

#95 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 06:45 PM | Reply | Flag:

At best, the benefits of infrastructure, defense, etc, are shared between buyer and seller, and everyone else for that matter.

Curiously missing is the "at worst" half of this statement... and an assessment of where along that spectrum we find ourselves.

#96 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 06:53 PM | Reply | Flag:

"And yet you're STILL ignoring that you would never be able to even CREATE or DISTRIBUTE the thing you're selling to your customers without all that SOCIETY has created and provided for you."

You mean those same things that society would never be able to purchase and procure if it weren't for everything that society has created for them?

I think it's you who doesn't understand. At best, the benefits of infrastructure, defense, etc, are shared between buyer and seller, and everyone else for that matter. It's utterly retarded to say that sellers owe something to society other than the goods they sell. It's like saying buyers owe something to society other than the money the use to buy with. Both use roads, airports, harbors, etc, to complete the value chain.

"As I said - egocentric and ungrateful."

I guess I should be more appreciative of what you have done for me. if it weren't for you. I might not have this computer to type on. How much do I owe you?

#94 | Posted by madbomber

You seem truly incapable of seeing anything in any terms other than BUYERS and SELLERS. People were living together in communities before buying and selling was taking place, and they still did things for the group and benefited from that group.

Do you think anyone in america could invent or distribute anything if society had done nothing for them?

I didn't buy you your laptop. But the people who came before us built an educational system that enabled people to create it. They built the roads that shipped it, and held the bandits at bay. You're using that laptop because SOCIETY enabled it. And the guy who sold it TOOK all those gifts from society to be able to sell you the laptop and get rich. So he OWES part of his fortune back to society. It's really simple. Perhaps not as simple as you, apparently.

#97 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-12 07:05 PM | Reply | Flag: | Funny: 1

"No I don't. I have no printing press. Do you have one? That would be odd."

You have a computer. Start the Snoof Report. I'll be your first subscriber.

#98 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 07:27 PM | Reply | Flag:

Yes, I have a computer.

If the terms of service with my ISP don't allow me to host a web page on that computer, are my rights being violated?

#99 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 07:30 PM | Reply | Flag:

#77 Mackris I will refrain from answering until it comes up in Mustangs question the answer would be lengthy and off topic.

Mad,

Wars may not have been fought to specifically aid one wealthy person or company but the very fact of having the largest military in the world acts as a deterrent which protects American business interests overseas even if fighting never occurs. The cost of the military at 1/3 of the budget is far above anything conceivable to protect my interests so while I do benefit from the protection of the military trying to say I benefit as much as Musk or Gates who have global interests isn't realistic.

Most any product today benefits from an existing social structure as well as past art. The fact is in this day and age profit corporations receive far more protection legally, criminally and militarily than any individual, they benefit more from past art in terms of inventions and science yet are constantly avoiding paying their portion. You can argue that anything they pay is passed on to the consumer anyway and that is a valid point. The issue there is I won't ever drive a Tesla so why are my tax dollars supporting Tesla?

#100 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-08-12 07:39 PM | Reply | Flag:

"You've argued that's what a right to health care means."

Because only a doctor can provide healthcare, or at least the type of healthcare you're referencing. You don't need the government to force another party to provide you with the right to freedom of press. You already have it. Without the doctor, you don't have the "right" to healthcare.

"Curiously missing is the "at worst" half of this statement... and an assessment of where along that spectrum we find ourselves."

Worst may have been the wrong word, but I can make a very strong argument that distribution is more valuable to the buyer than the seller. The buyer needs the widget more than the seller. The seller has plenty.

"People were living together in communities before buying and selling was taking place, and they still did things for the group and benefited from that group."

???

Trade has been occurring since man first crawled out of the ooze.

"and they still did things for the group and benefited from that group."

How do you think early man would have treated those among them who refused to participate in the hunt but still demanded meat?

"But the people who came before us built an educational system that enabled people to create it."

Which I pay for in taxes

"They built the roads that shipped it, and held the bandits at bay."

Which I pay for in taxes

"And the guy who sold it TOOK all those gifts from society to be able to sell you the laptop and get rich. So he OWES part of his fortune back to society."

Gifts? They weren't free. he pays taxes for those services. And since everyone uses roads, education, defense, etc, doesn't it follow that everyone owes part of their fortune back to society?

That's what I don't get. All these things benefit everybody. But you feel that it is acceptable for a small, select few to be paying for these services.

#101 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 07:43 PM | Reply | Flag:

DING DING

this MIGHT be my last post on this recurring pile of...well never mind..

once more anyway simply because this little mole is irrelevant...

enron.....

#102 | Posted by afkabl2 at 2014-08-12 07:52 PM | Reply | Flag:

How do you think early man would have treated those among them who refused to participate in the hunt but still demanded meat?

You mean like children, or what? Or do you mean the women staying behind raising the children, or what? Or do you mean the men that were too old or sick to hunt, or what?

I think they would have treated them better than your economic sophistry would.

#103 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 07:53 PM | Reply | Flag:

"If the terms of service with my ISP don't allow me to host a web page on that computer, are my rights being violated?"

No.

If you need help with a web page, lemme know. There are plenty of services out there that will facilitate your maximizing your press freedom.

"The cost of the military at 1/3 of the budget is far above anything conceivable to protect my interests so while I do benefit from the protection of the military trying to say I benefit as much as Musk or Gates who have global interests isn't realist."

My opinion, the military is a handout program to US manufacturers. The F-35 is the most expensive weapons project in the history of earth. It will cost a trillion dollars by the time it's done. In 2013 dollars, you could have bought 284 P-51s for the cost of one F-35. The P-51 was the premier fighter of WWII. The F-35 is the premier fighter of the year it goes IOC.

And yes, you benefit just as much as Musk or Gates. You're all in the same boat if we get a new owner. Or, you may not care if we get a new owner.

#104 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 07:53 PM | Reply | Flag:

Still no word on trial by jury.

Discussing that right is like Kryptonite for a neoRandoid.

#105 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 07:54 PM | Reply | Flag:

If you need help with a web page, lemme know. There are plenty of services out there that will facilitate your maximizing your press freedom.

Aren't there plenty of doctors willing to do the same for my health? But my health isn't a right, is it?

What's it mean for something to be a right, then?

#106 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 07:58 PM | Reply | Flag:

Gifts? They weren't free. he pays taxes for those services. And since everyone uses roads, education, defense, etc, doesn't it follow that everyone owes part of their fortune back to society?

That's what I don't get. All these things benefit everybody. But you feel that it is acceptable for a small, select few to be paying for these services.

#101 | Posted by madbomber

You're not just paying taxes for what YOU use. You're paying taxes for what the NEXT guy will use. You're not BUYING something for yourself, you're investing in the fabric of society which has enabled your success.

You didn't pay taxes to get your public schooling, those who came before you did. Now you pay your taxes so the NEXT kid can be successful.

Everyone pays taxes and invests in this fabric, but the more wealth you GOT from america, the more you owe it in return. Somehow this latest generation of republican ------ think they can just TAKE the great benefits of existing in america, and then refuse or find a loophole around repaying america.

#107 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-12 08:05 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Gifts? They weren't free. he pays taxes for those services. And since everyone uses roads, education, defense, etc, doesn't it follow that everyone owes part of their fortune back to society?"

Yes, you finally get it.

#108 | Posted by danni at 2014-08-12 08:05 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

"You mean like children, or what? Or do you mean the women staying behind raising the children, or what? Or do you mean the men that were too old or sick to hunt, or what?"

I mean like whoever the providers of the meat felt were refusing to participate. I'm pretty sure that in caveman culture there was no "right" to meat. And there certainly wasn't any "right" to healthcare.

There were no doctors.

"Still no word on trial by jury."

???

"Aren't there plenty of doctors willing to do the same for my health? But my health isn't a right, is it?"

If you can't find a service to help you with a website, you can always write your own paper on stationary supplies. Again, for the third, fourth, fifth time, whatever, your right to the freedom of press does not require anyone other than you. That's not the case when it comes to your right to healthcare. Or the cave dweller's right to meat.

#109 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 08:07 PM | Reply | Flag:

And yes, you benefit just as much as Musk or Gates.

Sad to see someone still believe in Trickle Down Economics after decades of it failing.

"Since 1975, practically all the gains in household income have gone to the top 20% of households. Since 1996, dividends and capital gains have grown faster than wages or any other category of after-tax income." www.cia.gov

According to MadBomber, that's what it looks like when you benefit just as much as Musk or Gates.

#110 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 08:12 PM | Reply | Flag:

"You're not just paying taxes for what YOU use. You're paying taxes for what the NEXT guy will use. You're not BUYING something for yourself, you're investing in the fabric of society which has enabled your success."

And if you don't achieve success, you're not required to pay for defense, roads, airports, even though you use them as much as the guy who did succeed?

And what about programs like SNAP, medicare, Medicaid, disability, how did these contribute to the success of Bill Gates or Elon Musk? Try hard.

And what burden do the people who receive these benefits carry? is that my role as a success? To pay for those who fail?

"Somehow this latest generation of republican ------ think they can just TAKE the great benefits of existing in america, and then refuse or find a loophole around repaying america."

that's not the discussion at hand, is it? I've been under the impression that your position has consistently been that the successful members of society have an obligation to fund society. the unsuccessful have no burden. Correct me if I'm wrong.

"Yes, you finally get it."

Do you wish speaksoftly did?

#111 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 08:15 PM | Reply | Flag:

your right to the freedom of press does not require anyone other than you. That's not the case when it comes to your right to healthcare.
#109 | Posted by madbomber

I see what you're saying but I'm not seeing the point of why you're saying it. To help me understand why you are so obsessed with "require anyone other than you," I'd like you to address trial by jury, a right that requires at least twelve people other than me, not including judge, bailiff, stenographer, etc.

#112 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 08:19 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Sad to see someone still believe in Trickle Down Economics after decades of it failing."

Central planning proved to be a much greater success.

"Since 1975, practically all the gains in household income have gone to the top 20% of households."

Yes. Predictably. Why are you still arguing this. It's like pretending to be surprised in the decline in the revenues of dial up services as the increase in cable internet. It's not like it was a bolt out of the blue.

#113 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 08:20 PM | Reply | Flag:

"I've been under the impression that your position has consistently been that the successful members of society have an obligation to fund society. the unsuccessful have no burden."

Ask Czar Nicholas what he thinks the responsiblity of the haves is to the have nots.

#114 | Posted by danni at 2014-08-12 08:22 PM | Reply | Flag:

the unsuccessful have no burden.

How did you plan to burden those without the means to carry the burden?
You can't get blood from a stone, no matter how hard you squeeze.
It's a backward society indeed that looks to the weakest among it to carry it forward.
Has quite a lot in common with a slave system, actually.

#115 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 08:23 PM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

"Since 1975, practically all the gains in household income have gone to the top 20% of households."

Yes. Predictably. Why are you still arguing this.

Because you still don't see that it belies your claim "you benefit just as much as Musk or Gates."

80% of "you" don't. At least not since 1975. You can't have it both ways.

#116 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 08:25 PM | Reply | Flag:

#112 That's a legal "right". A service. Having an actual "right" to trial by jury would require you having the right to 12 people and the rest.

#117 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 08:25 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Ask Czar Nicholas what he thinks the responsiblity of the haves is to the have nots."

Why is this a material question?

#118 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 08:26 PM | Reply | Flag:

Having an actual "right" to trial by jury would require you having the right to 12 people and the rest.

Yes, it sure would. That's the same thing you claim a right to health care would require -- the right to other people.

Doesn't that mean a right to a trial by jury is just as objectionable as a right to health care?

#119 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 08:28 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Has quite a lot in common with a slave system, actually."

How would you characterize a system where a relatively small number of wealth producers carry the entire weight of society? Isn't that sort of slavey too?

"80% of "you" don't. At least not since 1975. You can't have it both ways."

If Russia nukes the US, is Elon Musk or Bill Gates going to receive some protections that you don't? The platinum service maybe? Special bunkers for the taxpayers?

#120 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 08:29 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Doesn't that mean a right to a trial by jury is just as objectionable as a right to health care?"

Oh dude, I've already said that you can claim as many dependent rights as you choose.

You can claim healthcare is a right, or garbage pickup, or lawn care, or cable TV, or sex, or food, or water, or housing, or virtually any other good or service. You can characterize every last one of those as rights. And you can ascribe a responsible party who job it is to provide those rights. It is the responsibility of the doctor to provide healthcare. It is the responsibility of the gardener to provide lawn care. It is the responsibility of the cable company to provide TV service. It is the responsibility of the desired man or woman to provide sex. And so on.

But these rights are quite different than concepts such as the right to free speech, or the right to freedom of religion, or any other concept that does not require another person in order for it to reach fruition.

#121 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 08:34 PM | Reply | Flag:

I see the fantasy of libertarian economics involves Russia hypothetically nuking us to make its case.

I wonder if you'd be willing to talk about the reality of modern economics, the one in which Russia isn't nuking us. The one in which "Since 1975, practically all the gains in household income have gone to the top 20% of households."

That certainly runs counter to your assertion that "you benefit just as much as Musk or Gates." For 80% of households it's clearly a lie.

#122 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 08:34 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Why is this a material question?"

Oh, I think even you can figure it out.

#123 | Posted by danni at 2014-08-12 08:36 PM | Reply | Flag:

"But these rights are quite different than concepts such as the right to free speech, or the right to freedom of religion, or any other concept that does not require another person in order for it to reach fruition."

But the "rights" you demand were quite radical at the time they originated, new "rights" have continued to be realized and will continue to as long as society progresses. Just because something wasn't a recognized "right" yesterday doesn't mean it can't be one that is recognized today.

#124 | Posted by danni at 2014-08-12 08:38 PM | Reply | Flag:

But these rights are quite different than concepts such as the right to free speech, or the right to freedom of religion, or any other concept that does not require another person in order for it to reach fruition.
#121 | Posted by madbomber

All of those rights require others, for example it required our Founders to write them down on a piece of paper. But I digress.

Getting back to my rights, I have a right to trial by jury. It burdens others. Let's talk about that right and the burden it imposes. Should I be stripped of that right, because it's a burden on others?

It sure seemed like your objection to a right to health care was that it places a burden on others. Well, so does my right to a trial by jury. I'm wondering if the objection still holds.

#125 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 08:39 PM | Reply | Flag:

or any other concept that does not require another person in order for it to reach fruition.

It seems like you're regressing to your "last man on the planet" conceptualization of rights. The one in which I have the right to walk down Pennsylvania Avenue naked and take a dump on the White House steps. What your lame-brained definition does is replace "rights" with "whatever you can get away with." For surely you could get away with anything when you're the last man on earth.

If you didn't agree with the gist of the Wikipedia definition given in #46, understand that it is you who is wrong, not Wikipedia.

You wouldn't be able to speak had you not been taught. Your right to freedom of speech required other people, first to teach you to speak, and later to teach you about that right. You're just too blinkered to acknowledge their existence.

#126 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 08:47 PM | Reply | Flag:

"You're not just paying taxes for what YOU use. You're paying taxes for what the NEXT guy will use. You're not BUYING something for yourself, you're investing in the fabric of society which has enabled your success."

And if you don't achieve success, you're not required to pay for defense, roads, airports, even though you use them as much as the guy who did succeed?

And what about programs like SNAP, medicare, Medicaid, disability, how did these contribute to the success of Bill Gates or Elon Musk? Try hard.

And what burden do the people who receive these benefits carry? is that my role as a success? To pay for those who fail?

"Somehow this latest generation of republican ------ think they can just TAKE the great benefits of existing in america, and then refuse or find a loophole around repaying america."

that's not the discussion at hand, is it? I've been under the impression that your position has consistently been that the successful members of society have an obligation to fund society. the unsuccessful have no burden. Correct me if I'm wrong.

#111 | Posted by madbomber

I already pointed out to you that EVERYONE pays taxes whenever we buy something. Oh, are you one of those suckers who buys the republican line about poor people paying no taxes?

All those boogeyman welfare programs you hate definitely contributed to the success of entrepreneurs in america because they held our country together, helping people get ahead instead of turning into criminals and frausters. You're still wearing those fear-based republican blinders that makes you see each man as an island instead of part of a society. You want to function as an induvidual? Go live on an island and enjoy all your success.

#127 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-08-12 08:50 PM | Reply | Flag:

How would you characterize a system where a relatively small number of wealth producers carry the entire weight of society? Isn't that sort of slavey too?

Seriously? If that isn't trolling, what is?

The king is a servant to his subjects is what you are angling at. Slavery in a purely metaphorical sense. Sort of like a CD-ROM is a slave to the old IDE hard drive master.

Realistically, the life of a slave and the life of Bill Gates couldn't be more different.

There's a book you've probably read called Atlas Shrugged. Slaves don't get that option to shrug because they don't have the freedom to do it. There's your difference.

You might as well be arguing that Alex Rodriguez is a slave since he can be traded from team to team without his consent. But he won't be whipped for not getting enough doubles. Nor will Steinbrenner's kids be raping A-Rod's wife and children just for fun or punishment... or both.

So yes, other than the involuntary terms of their labor contract, the complete lack of rights and legal standing, and being fed fish guts, CEOs are exactly like slaves!

#128 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 09:04 PM | Reply | Flag:

One nice thing is we've clearly identified our poster boy for fantasy libertarian economics.

#129 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 09:04 PM | Reply | Flag:

Here's a slice of the bottom line: For non-corporate citizens, the defense of this nation begins and ends at our territorial boundaries. As long as no one with bad intentions crosses those lines in an attempt to harm us, that is all the general public needs and demands. However, the expansion and projection of our "defense" globally only exists for the protection and concerns of our BUSINESSES who need legal and physical protections beyond our shores. It was one thing when this "protection" involved American workers and good-paying American jobs; but now it's solely about protecting corporation's global profit-streams and the right to keep these profits secured by the US military's global dominance and away from on-shore US taxation.

Almost the entire non-criminal legal system is another tool of business far more than that of the average citizen, as are many sectors of government that don't intimately impact the daily lives of citizens.

Corporations used to be expected to pay for the exorbitant amount of "government" that they themselves need to protect and grow their wealth. Patent law isn't protecting Joe Sixpack, it protects Joe Inc. who buys the patent from Mr. Sixpack. Our corporations should have to pay for all the government they use, if not through taxes, then through fees paid to fund the government oversight and the legal system and laws that enable them to profit so prodigiously.

Corporations aren't overtaxed; they're groups of freeloading wealthy individuals that have tricked the average citizen into believing government should only exist to guarantee their profits and to protect their wealth, while that the average citizen should be happy to foot the bill as they salute the flag of our glorious free market system, now close to 100% rigged in their favor through the purchase of our elected governments accomplished with their spare change.

#130 | Posted by tonyroma at 2014-08-12 09:05 PM | Reply | Flag:

Here's a slice of the bottom line: For non-corporate citizens, the defense of this nation begins and ends at our territorial boundaries. As long as no one with bad intentions crosses those lines in an attempt to harm us, that is all the general public needs and demands. However, the expansion and projection of our "defense" globally only exists for the protection and concerns of our BUSINESSES who need legal and physical protections beyond our shores. It was one thing when this "protection" involved American workers and good-paying American jobs; but now it's solely about protecting corporation's global profit-streams and the right to keep these profits secured by the US military's global dominance and away from on-shore US taxation.

Almost the entire non-criminal legal system is another tool of business far more than that of the average citizen, as are many sectors of government that don't intimately impact the daily lives of citizens.

Corporations used to be expected to pay for the exorbitant amount of "government" that they themselves need to protect and grow their wealth. Patent law isn't protecting Joe Sixpack, it protects Joe Inc. who buys the patent from Mr. Sixpack. Our corporations should have to pay for all the government they use, if not through taxes, then through fees paid to fund the government oversight and the legal system and laws that enable them to profit so prodigiously.

Corporations aren't overtaxed; they're groups of freeloading wealthy individuals that have tricked the average citizen into believing government should only exist to guarantee their profits and to protect their wealth, while that the average citizen should be happy to foot the bill as they salute the flag of our glorious free market system, now close to 100% rigged in their favor through the purchase of our elected governments accomplished with their spare change.

#131 | Posted by tonyroma at 2014-08-12 09:05 PM | Reply | Flag:

"One nice thing is we've clearly identified our poster boy for fantasy libertarian economics."

I'll accept that. I'm not sure I want a world where I, or you, are legally subject to the whims of another, or a group of anothers, or a majority of anothers.

When man has the legal right to lay claim to the property of another, you're no longer part of a free society. Someday it may be you that someone else is making a legal claim on. The fact that you don't understand this demonstrates your naivety.

Einstein said that doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. Yet here you are, making the claim that progressive policies are the key to a more prosperous, more equitable society. just like the Bolsheviks did. And the Spanish Anarchists. And the Viet Cong. And the Khmer Rouge. And many others who, even if they had good intentions, only created more depressed, more desperate conditions than those who preceeded them. You see a world where you are the master, not realizing that it is just as likely you wind up the slave.

#132 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 09:56 PM | Reply | Flag:

"All those boogeyman welfare programs you hate definitely contributed to the success of entrepreneurs in america because they held our country together, helping people get ahead instead of turning into criminals and frausters."

Really?

What would have happened if they had been put on a poor farm? Forced into labor in order to support themselves?

#133 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-12 09:57 PM | Reply | Flag:

"And the Khmer Rouge."

They are an object lesson in the unintended consequences of imperialism. They were empowered by the U.S. bombing and invasion of Cambodia.

#134 | Posted by nullifidian at 2014-08-12 10:11 PM | Reply | Flag:

I'm not sure I want a world where I, or you, are legally subject to the whims of another, or a group of anothers, or a majority of anothers.
#132 | Posted by madbomber

Regardless of all that, you live in such a country, on such a world.
I'm sure you've heard the statement "America is a nation of laws."
That means we're legally subject to all that blah blah blah.

You still -- still! -- haven't touched trial by jury. Should the accused have the right to compel the empaneling, possibly even the sequestration, of a jury?

#135 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 10:26 PM | Reply | Flag:

And yes, you benefit just as much as Musk or Gates. You're all in the same boat if we get a new owner.

The cost to defend this country from a new owner is considerably less than the cost to defend economic assets across the globe. Since I do not require protection for my factory in SE Asia my taxes should be proportionally less.

And if you don't achieve success, you're not required to pay for defense, roads, airports

I don't think I have ever argued for anyone to get out of taxes completely. Reality is that some literally do not have the ability to contribute. So it will happen that society supports some. I do have the expectation that everyone who is able will be net payers of tax through their life.

And what about programs like SNAP, medicare, Medicaid, disability, how did these contribute to the success of Bill Gates or Elon Musk?

Well since we keep hearing about welfare mom's with Cadillacs why not update the mythos to welfare mom's with Teslas. And I am sure at one point you have complained about welfare mom's with internet, I am betting they use some Microsoft programs in the process. We hear about food stamp cuts hurting Walmart the rich make a profit off those payments so why not pick up a portion of the costs?

#136 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-08-12 10:30 PM | Reply | Flag:

What would have happened if they had been put on a poor farm? Forced into labor in order to support themselves?

A lot of business would have lost a ton of money?

#137 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-08-12 10:35 PM | Reply | Flag:

Yet here you are, making the claim that progressive policies are the key to a more prosperous, more equitable society. just like the Bolsheviks did. And the Spanish Anarchists. And the Viet Cong. And the Khmer Rouge. And many others who, even if they had good intentions, only created more depressed, more desperate conditions than those who preceeded them. You see a world where you are the master, not realizing that it is just as likely you wind up the slave.
#132 | Posted by madbomber

I don't recall making that claim. About the only claim of that nature that's been discussed in this thread is Denmark's right to health care.

How is that working for Denmark? How much would you say Denmark today like Cambodia under Pol Pot? How many Danes been liquidated by their government in Denmark, is it around one million, or is it more like zero?

I'm going with zero. I was probably tricked though. Surely millions of Danes have been murdered by their government in the name of progress. I suppose the piles and piles of human skulls had simply been hauled away for cleaning the last time I visited Tivoli Gardens, causing me to believe Denmark is actually nothing at all like Cambodia in the Khmer Rouge days. Silly me!

#138 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 10:39 PM | Reply | Flag:

"Yet here you are, making the claim that progressive policies are the key to a more prosperous, more equitable society. just like the Bolsheviks did. And the Spanish Anarchists. And the Viet Cong."

So completely stupid, that isn't Progressive policies at all, apples and rocks you liar.

#139 | Posted by danni at 2014-08-12 10:49 PM | Reply | Flag:

Trial by jury, MadBomber.

The question doesn't go away just because your philosophy runs contrary to the Bill of Rights.

#140 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-12 10:54 PM | Reply | Flag:

Ayn Rand's mad fantasy world has never existed outside her ignorant and repugnant imagination.

#141 | Posted by Tor at 2014-08-13 01:52 AM | Reply | Flag:

We were a great nation because we believed not just in freedom, but the common good. Thus we conquered small pox and polio, built sanitary sewer systems and water supplies, not for profit, but for the common good. A recent example is the county recreational centers built in my neighborhood. Two ice rinks, two swimming pools in the summer and one in the winter. An enormous exercise facility with programs for adults and kids in hockey, figure skating, yoga, weight lifting....... costs me $120/year (actually $180/year for two).

No fake free market enterprise can compare to that facility. Its the same way with our schools and roads. The private sector is dying to take all of it over, because they love monopoly more than anything. The first thing they will do is raise prices. Its already happened to the parking meters. Alta charges $70/day, up from $5/day in the sixties. Salt Lake City leases it from the Forest Service. Other local private ski resorts charge $90-120/day and offer inferior snow. I'm sure Alta wouldn't be as expensive as it is if the private ones didn't charge so much. In fact I ski at Alta for $35/day by buying a discount card in August.

So spare the BS about how competition and free markets provide the best quality, service and prices for consumers and a country. Like mainstream economics in this country its total malarkey, bought and paid for by the ruling class, that's running away with everyone's hard earned money. Its getting harder and harder every day. The ladders of upward mobility are being dismantled in favor of inherited wealth and monopoly. Not a good time to bring children into the world.

#142 | Posted by nutcase at 2014-08-13 08:08 AM | Reply | Flag: | Newsworthy 1

A recent example is the county recreational centers built in my neighborhood. Two ice rinks, two swimming pools in the summer and one in the winter. An enormous exercise facility with programs for adults and kids in hockey, figure skating, yoga, weight lifting....... costs me $120/year (actually $180/year for two).

I am a libertarian-leaning conservative. I think public parks, libraries, etc. are all really good things.

The community that I live in has a nice park and a solid library. I am glad for it. We use the library a lot. For National Junior Honor's society my oldest son had to do volunteer work at our library for 8 hours. It was a Friday afternoon thing for 40 minutes at a time. He pretty much re-stocked books and videos. He enjoyed doing it. After he met his requirement he continued to volunteer at the library on Fridays. It made him feel good to give back to a public service that had given so much to him over the years.

#143 | Posted by JeffJ at 2014-08-13 08:37 AM | Reply | Flag:

We were a great nation because we believed not just in freedom, but the common good.

"Common good" is a loaded term. The example you cited was at the local level and at that level I agree with how you applied the notion (as evidenced in my prior post). The bigger the population set, the more contentious the term 'common good' becomes. This country is so unbelievably diverse that defining common good at a national level is an extremely difficult proposition. National politics are such a different animal than state and local politics. This is precisely why we have the 10th Amendment.

This country was founded on self-governance. Granted, the Articles of Confederation made a union of states impossible. The Constitution gave the federal government the powers it needed to create a union of states. But it also created a federalist system. The brilliance of the document is that it doesn't allow power to become concentrated. Article 1, Section 8 defines congressional power and it's fairly limited in scope (although it still enumerates a LOT of power to congress). Any sober reading of Article 1, Section 8 followed by a reading of the 10th Amendment makes it quite clear just how limited federal powers are. The document also divided power at the federal level through a series of checks and balances.

The process held up for about 150 years. Over the last 80 years the federal government has been slowly shredding the document and has continually centralized power. It has become an out-of-control leviathan that is asserting more and more control over our everyday lives. With the exception of the NSA, lefties and most liberals applaud this. While the progressive view toward the federal government makes me sad, what makes me almost despondent is that the left has cheered for an erosion of the rule of law, and abandonment of the process, in order to achieve their desired end.

#144 | Posted by JeffJ at 2014-08-13 08:54 AM | Reply | Flag:

However, the expansion and projection of our "defense" globally only exists for the protection and concerns of our BUSINESSES who need legal and physical protections beyond our shores. It was one thing when this "protection" involved American workers and good-paying American jobs;

#131 | POSTED BY TONYROMA AT 2014-08-12 09:05 PM | REPLY | FLAG:

It never involved American workers and good-paying American jobs. This is not a new phenomenon. Our power projection in defense of our international trading concerns began with the founding fathers and birth of the US Navy. We're talking pre-1812 here. I would strongly suggest reading "Six Frigates" by Ian Toll.

Jefferson wanted to build a "gunboat navy" for coastal defense, incapable of power projection. He lost that debate and the American people had frigates commissioned. Jefferson later admitted his plan was not a good idea in hindsight. Those particular gunboats sucked at their job. Instead we ended up with power projecting, commerce raiding 44-gun frigates. They were heavily armed, fast, open ocean combat ships that far over-matched all of the 36 & 38 gun frigates of the time and could out sail all of the 72-gun 3rd rates that had proliferated in the world superpowers navies.

#145 | Posted by sitzkrieg at 2014-08-13 09:34 AM | Reply | Flag:

"They are an object lesson in the unintended consequences of imperialism. They were empowered by the U.S. bombing and invasion of Cambodia."

There are lots of other lessons in the unintended consequences of Imperialism that did not result in the outcome we saw in Coambodia. That outcome was due strictly to their Marxist approcah to achieving an egalitarian outcome. And to their credit, they came as closer to anyone else to achieving communism as Marx intended it to be.

#135

Please see #117

"Reality is that some literally do not have the ability to contribute."

Really? Generally, if one does not have plenty of money, they have plnety of time. And time can be contributed when money can't. This goes back to my support for a CCC-like program where, if you're going to use taxpayer dollars to support those who don't earn an income, then you owe it to that taxpayer to maximize the utilization of that labor pool. Freeways are always in need of trash pick-up, as are rivers and streams. Even if it wasn't 40 hours a week, why not whatever it took to keep public areas clean and in order? What is the down side?

"We hear about food stamp cuts hurting Walmart the rich make a profit off those payments so why not pick up a portion of the costs?"

The biggest supports of food stamps are grocery stores. Think about it, you're able to take taxpayer money and force it to be spent within your industry.

"I don't recall making that claim."

You don't make the claim that progressive policies lead to more prosperous, more equitable society? Forgive me if I've misunderstood you.

"About the only claim of that nature that's been discussed in this thread is Denmark's right to health care."

After reviewing a synopsis of the Constitution of Denmark, I found no mention of healthcare being a right. It is a service provided by government. Paid for by the Danes via taxation. But here's the thing: All danes Contribute. All income in Denmark is taxed by at least 8%. In addition, all labor income earned above $7,600 is taxed an additional 28%-32%. On top of that are an additional 3.76% in state tax. There are local taxes as well.

The bottom line is that one of the big differences between the US and Denmark is that everybody is contributing to cover the costs. An American earning 9k per year will pay $1719 in federal taxes (SS, Medicare, income). A Dane earning the same amount would pay $3240 in equivalent taxes.

In other words it's not a right, it's something they are paying for. Rights are not contingent on beiong able to pay for them. I don't have to pay for the right to free speech, or the right to freedom of religion.

#146 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-13 09:45 AM | Reply | Flag:

"Russia is Authoritarian. Let it remain so., and let us no longer try and change that. But the Authoritarian system must be based on genuine concern and love on the part of the rulers, not only for themselves and those around them, but also for all their people, and all neighboring peoples too"

Alexander Solzhenitsyn, 1973

AS, of all people, should have understood that authoritarianism can never be used for the good of all people. It's used, at best, when a moral and responsible group of people want to control those who are less moral and responsible. But more often than not it is those in power ensuring they remain there. This isn't a partisan thing. Authoritarianism is as much a threat to a progressive as it is a conservative. And the only want to limit authoritarianism is to limit the power of government. Period. the party claiming that they will wield their authoritarianism differently are lying or naive.

#147 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-13 09:53 AM | Reply | Flag:

"I don't recall making that claim."
You don't make the claim that progressive policies lead to more prosperous, more equitable society? Forgive me if I've misunderstood you.

I was referring to the concept that some people won't pay taxes. Other than those unable to work I think everyone has a responsibility to pay taxes. Yes I agree with progressive taxation where Billy and Elon pay a larger percentage because they benefit more from government services. However that doesn't mean that Joe Schmo should not pay some taxes.

As far as progressive policies go I support some and others I think are stupid and misguided if not directly hurtful. It is really a case by case issue for me.

Really? Generally, if one does not have plenty of money, they have plnety of time. And time can be contributed when money can't. This goes back to my support for a CCC-like program where, if you're going to use taxpayer dollars to support those who don't earn an income, then you owe it to that taxpayer to maximize the utilization of that labor pool. Freeways are always in need of trash pick-up, as are rivers and streams. Even if it wasn't 40 hours a week, why not whatever it took to keep public areas clean and in order? What is the down side?

When I say some people are unable to contribute I am referring to children, the elderly and the disabled not simply the lazy. I would be all for a CCC works project for those currently on welfare and/or food stamps.

That said I think the real solution is a social credit set up not constant transfer payments. I know I gave you the link to social credit once before and I don't think you have ever addressed that. Without a conversation on social credit talking about my ideas on helping the disadvantaged are meaningless. The whole system would require a revamp of our whole economic structure and is more than a post on a blog worth of ramifications.

#148 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-08-13 11:00 AM | Reply | Flag:

In other words it's not a right, it's something they are paying for. Rights are not contingent on beiong able to pay for them. I don't have to pay for the right to free speech, or the right to freedom of religion.
#146 | Posted by madbomber

As usual, you are squarely off the mark.

Do Americans have a right to defense? Does that right cost us a small percent of our GDP?

Who paid for the years of trials to get us to the decision in Reno v ACLU, extending the First Amendment to Internet speech?

We have a right to due process. Do judges, police, district attorneys work for free?

I have a right to bear arms. How am I supposed to bear arms unless I buy a gun first?

It seems like you disagree with how rights were described in #46. There's nothing in that definition which talks about payment or non-payment, on either a personal or a societal level, as being a defining characteristic of rights. You may want to address your error and try again.

And explain how the jurors compelled to hear a trial aren't paying for my right with their time lost from work.

#149 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-13 01:25 PM | Reply | Flag:

#149

160 years ago people had the "right" to own slaves. What happened?

"I have a right to bear arms. How am I supposed to bear arms unless I buy a gun first?"

That's a great point! Based on your logic, shouldn't the US government be providing everyone with guns?

#150 | Posted by madbomber at 2014-08-13 04:16 PM | Reply | Flag:

Based on your logic, shouldn't the US government be providing everyone with guns?
#150 | Posted by madbomber

That's actually your logic, champ. The "logic" where rights are things you don't have to pay for.

Sensible people understand that rights come with a cost. That "freedom isn't free" if you prefer.

#151 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-13 05:52 PM | Reply | Flag:

Based on your logic, shouldn't the US government be providing everyone with guns?
#150 | Posted by madbomber

That's actually your logic, champ. The "logic" where rights are things you don't have to pay for.

Sensible people understand that rights come with a cost. That "freedom isn't free" if you prefer.

#152 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-13 05:52 PM | Reply | Flag:

160 years ago people had the "right" to own slaves. What happened?

Rights changed. It happens all the time.
For example, you have Miranda rights that people living a century ago didn't.
Do you think Miranda rights are free too? That cops don't get paid for the few moments it takes to Mirandize you? It's hilarious how convoluted and just plain wrong your understanding of rights is.

#153 | Posted by snoofy at 2014-08-13 05:55 PM | Reply | Flag:

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