Watch all of it. We're dumb. He's not.
Okay. What I mean is that he kicks my tribe's ass. So, I'm a fan.
Oh, and it goes back aways:
Didn't mean to get too deep. Yes I did.
The crucial ingredient for a scandal is the prospect of high-level White House involvement and wide political repercussions. Government wrongdoing is boring. Scandals can bring down presidents, decide elections and revive down-and-out political parties. Scandals can dominate American politics for months at a time.
On Tuesday, it looked like we had three possible political scandals brewing. Two days later, with much more evidence available, it doesn’t look like any of them will pan out. There’ll be more hearings, and more bad press for the Obama administration, and more demands for documents. But — and this is a key qualification — absent more revelations, the scandals that could reach high don’t seem to include any real wrongdoing, whereas the ones that include real wrongdoing don’t reach high enough.Ezra then goes about explaining why there is no there there -- albeit it tentatively -- and that the scandals will likely fade into oblivion. Let's hope so. Thanks Ezra!
|Free and unfettered markets: That's the ticket!|
|Guns, guitars, Ted Nugent, and the American flag. Yeah,|
that sounds about right. Unless, of course, you're sane.
|Nancy Brinker: Grifter for the Cure|
Turns out that in 2011, it spent just 15 percent of its donations on research — nearly half of what it did just a few years prior. And, significantly, its founder, Nancy Brinker, the woman whose vow to the sister she lost to cancer has served as the organization’s poignant, relatable narrative, stepped down as its CEO. In August, Brinker announced she was taking on a new role, as chairwoman of the executive committee. (She is, however, still listed as its CEO and founder on the Komen site. Komen says it’s still looking for her replacement.) In short, the whole series of fiascoes was so appalling that Deanna Zandt, author of “Share This! How You Will Change the World With Social Networking,” called the Komen fiasco a teachable “example of what not to do.”
Yet after more than a year of bad publicity and declining participation, Brinker herself seems to be doing just fine. As Cheryl Hall pointed out this weekend in the Dallas Morning News, Brinker made “$684,717 in fiscal 2012, a 64 percent jump from her $417,000 salary from April 2010 to March 2011.” That’s a whole lot of green for all that pink. Hall notes that’s about twice what the organization’s chief financial officer, Mark Nadolny, or former president Liz Thompson were making. And as Peggy Orenstein points out on her blog Monday, it’s considerably more than the average nonprofit CEO salary of $132,739.Nancy Brinker once had a great narrative, and as far as anyone knows it was sincere. Now, though, she, like many others, has turned her operation into a scam and herself into a grifter. When she got a taste of the high life, she wanted more. Breast cancer research, not so much.
|More than a year later and the shame continues.|
|John Maynard Keynes|
Ferguson was speaking at an investment conference in California on Thursday when he was asked about Keynes' famous observation that “in the long run we are all dead.” Ferguson disagrees with that idea because “in the long run our children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren are alive, and will have to deal with the consequences of our economic actions,” he said in his statement. But during the presentation, he went further.
Financial Advisor’s Tom Kostigen paraphrased Ferguson’s reply at the conference:
Ferguson asked the audience how many children Keynes had. He explained that Keynes had none because he was a homosexual and was married to a ballerina, with whom he likely talked of "poetry" rather than procreated. The audience went quiet at the remark. Some attendees later said they found the remarks offensive.Ferguson then went on to say that “it's only logical that Keynes would take this selfish world view because he was an ‘effete’ member of society,” according to Kostigen’s account.
But this long run is a misleading guide to current affairs. In the long run we are all dead. Economists set themselves too easy, too useless a task if in tempestuous seasons they can only tell us that when the storm is long past the ocean is flat again.Keynes was chiding his own profession to actually say something, build a model that calls for solving current problems and not simply slip away by saying "tax cuts will trickle down and save us all" or "fiscal consolidation will eventually solve all our growth problems." Sez the professor:
As I’ve written before, Keynes’s point here is that economic models are incomplete, suspect, and not much use if they can’t explain what happens year to year, but can only tell you where things will supposedly end up after a lot of time has passed. It’s an appeal for better analysis, not for ignoring the future; and anyone who tries to make it into some kind of moral indictment of Keynesian thought has forfeited any right to be taken seriously.
[...] And look, this isn’t hard. The overwhelming fact about our current situation is that conventional monetary policy is played out, with short-run interest rates at zero. This means that there is no easy way to offset the contractionary effects of fiscal austerity (maybe there are exotic ways to do something, but they’re tricky and unproved). And this in turn means that austerity right now is a terrible idea: any fiscal savings come at the expense of reduced output and higher unemployment. Indeed, even the fiscal savings are likely to be small and maybe even nonexistent: lower output and employment reduces revenues, and may inflict long-run economic damage that actually worsens the long-run fiscal position.I'm not an economist or a mathematician, but it's not hard for me to see that cutting spending in a recession reduces government revenues because my spending is your income and vice versa, as Krugman often points out. If my spending goes down, your income goes down, and GDP suffers, tax receipts shrink, etc.
|KrugTron the Magnificent: Right once again.|
Three in 10 registered American voters believe an armed rebellion might be necessary in the next few years, according to the results of a staggering poll released Wednesday by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind.
The survey, aimed at measuring public attitudes toward gun issues, found that 29 percent of Americans agree with the statement, “In the next few years, an armed revolution might be necessary in order to protect our liberties.” An additional five percent were unsure.
Eighteen percent of Democrats said an armed revolt “might be necessary,” as compared to 27 percent of independents and 44 percent of Republicans. Support levels were similar among males and females but higher among less educated voters.Of other discoveries in the poll, one stood out, that 25% of Americans believe we're being lied to about Sandy Hook in order to support a political agenda. This tracks well the conspiracy theories I generally find when sifting through comments on any gun-control issue. It doesn't matter if I counter with facts that show guns are unsafe or kill and wound thousands a year in the U.S., I'm generally met with comments like "Liberals make up those statistics to support their agenda. The truth is meaningless to them."