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  • Obama: 'Nothing can be off-limits' in budget [View article]
    Excerpts from Ben Stein NYT article 11/28/06:

    "Mr. Buffett compiled a data sheet of the men and women who work in his office. He had each of them make a fraction; the numerator was how much they paid in federal income tax and in payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare, and the denominator was their taxable income. The people in his office were mostly secretaries and clerks, though not all.
    It turned out that Mr. Buffett, with immense income from dividends and capital gains, paid far, far less as a fraction of his income than the secretaries or the clerks or anyone else in his office. Further, in conversation it came up that Mr. Buffett doesn’t use any tax planning at all. He just pays as the Internal Revenue Code requires. “How can this be fair?” he asked of how little he pays relative to his employees. “How can this be right?”"

    "Another argument was that raising taxes actually lowers total revenue, and that only cutting taxes stimulates federal revenue. This is supposedly proved by the history of tax receipts since my friend George W. Bush became president.
    In fact, the federal government collected roughly $1.004 trillion in income taxes from individuals in fiscal 2000, the last full year of President Bill Clinton’s merry rule. It fell to a low of $794 billion in 2003 after Mr. Bush’s tax cuts (but not, you understand, because of them, his supporters like to say). Only by the end of fiscal 2006 did income tax revenue surpass the $1 trillion level again.
    By this time, we Republicans had added a mere $2.7 trillion to the national debt. So much for tax cuts adding to revenue. To be fair, corporate profits taxes have increased greatly, as corporate profits have increased stupendously. This may be because of the cut in corporate tax rates. Anything is possible."

    "The final argument is the one I really love. People ask how I can be a conservative and still want higher taxes. It makes my head spin, and I guess it shows how old I am. But I thought that conservatives were supposed to like balanced budgets. I thought it was the conservative position to not leave heavy indebtedness to our grandchildren. I thought it was the conservative view that there should be some balance between income and outflow. When did this change?
    Oh, now, now, now I recall. It changed when we figured that we could cut taxes and generate so much revenue that we would balance the budget. But isn’t that what doctors call magical thinking? Haven’t the facts proved that this theory, though charming and beguiling, was wrong?"
    Jul 3, 2011. 11:55 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. has already repeated a version of the mistake of 1937 with "the mistake of 2010," Paul Krugman writes: "withdrawing fiscal support much too early and perpetuating high unemployment." Spending cuts and rate hikes would be even bigger mistakes, he says. "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it; we did, and we are."  [View news story]
    Some of the hedge fund/VC crowd are investing in "green" technologies. By your stated beliefs these investments can be only legit business opportunities.
    Jul 2, 2011. 02:28 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. has already repeated a version of the mistake of 1937 with "the mistake of 2010," Paul Krugman writes: "withdrawing fiscal support much too early and perpetuating high unemployment." Spending cuts and rate hikes would be even bigger mistakes, he says. "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it; we did, and we are."  [View news story]
    It's actually worse. GE is actually tranferring to the Chinese the technology to build jet engines along with other stuff to build airliners.
    Jul 2, 2011. 02:25 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. has already repeated a version of the mistake of 1937 with "the mistake of 2010," Paul Krugman writes: "withdrawing fiscal support much too early and perpetuating high unemployment." Spending cuts and rate hikes would be even bigger mistakes, he says. "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it; we did, and we are."  [View news story]
    Unfortunately your argument is worthless in this era of record corporate profits. If companies were the ultimate innovative resource, stock buybacks wouldn't exist.
    Jul 2, 2011. 02:19 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Pres. Obama's biggest challenge in reaching a debt ceiling deal is staring down Republicans intent on "distortion pure and simple," Paul Krugman writes. GOP leaders don't really care about the debt; they're out to destroy Obama. "Failure to reach a debt deal would have very bad consequences, [but he] must be prepared to face those consequences if he wants his presidency to survive."  [View news story]
    The point that you repubs never address is that why have you discovered how to spell debt now and not during the 8 years of Bush 2? How do people know this is not just another variant on some Rovian big lie election scare tactic?

    The facts are the following:

    1) Corporate profits have been at near record levels.

    2) The effective tax rate is at a record low.

    3) The Medicare expansion under Bush 2 didn't even allow the government to try to negotiate drug prices!

    So arguing that it's not possible to raise taxes is not credible.
    Jul 2, 2011. 01:51 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Be careful what you wish for: While D.C. politicians harden their positions on spending and taxes, austerity has already taken root in state governments, and it's killing the recovery. Daniel Indiviglio says cuts on the state and local level have knocked $8.8B off GDP and thrown 326,000 people out of work.  [View news story]
    Hey wingnuts here is some hard data, please explain rather than go off the edge. (from Sunday's Washington Post):

    "And then there’s Sweden, the rock star of the recovery.
    This Scandinavian nation of 9 million people has accomplished what the United States, Britain and Japan can only dream of: Growing rapidly, creating jobs and gaining a competitive edge. The banks are lending, the housing market booming. The budget is balanced."

    Before you get dismissive:

    Sweden does have immigration problems:
    "Sweden joins Europe-wide backlash against immigration
    Its asylum policies are the continent's most generous. But the public mood is now changing" (Guardian)

    Sweden has a policy of self reliance on defense. They make their own fighter, corvette, IFVs and other weapons (Bofors). No matter how polite their statement of territorial defense, they are geared against a land invasion by Russia.
    Jun 26, 2011. 10:26 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Oil Reserves to Be Tapped With Aim to Boost World Economy [View article]
    Complaints regarding the release of oil from the SPR point out that this "interferes" with the "free market". Why does the petro industry then need tax subsidies in the US? Doesn't this also interfere with the "free market"? I also don't recall any exclusions for the petro industry when it comes to R&D tax credits in general and Bush's famous acceleration of the expensing of capital expenditures to wring out every last bit if demand out of the economy.

    Look at the SPR release as exploiting the logical contradictions in the long list of ridiculous republican positions. If the oil market was rational, this insignificant quantity wouldn't have any effect.

    Sure the release is a political move, in that it is a didactic example that free markets are not necessarily 100% rational.

    It's also a shrewd financial move by CEO Obama. A crude back-of-the-envelope calculation shows the following: 30 million barrels of US oil @ $100/barrel is roughly $3 billion. The US imports roughly 20 million barrels per day. A $5 decrease in price over a month is roughly $3 billion. So if this price decrease holds over a month the oil pays for itself. Plus there is no doubt a profit to the USG because the average cost is probably below $100/barrel.

    Finally other big picture considerations:

    a) The Chinese have to be happy.
    b) People-behaving-badly who export oil as their principle revenue source (like Iran) get a 5% haircut.
    c) This is a cheap way to also put a temporary dent in food prices. Something which helps everyone.
    Jun 24, 2011. 09:02 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. has already repeated a version of the mistake of 1937 with "the mistake of 2010," Paul Krugman writes: "withdrawing fiscal support much too early and perpetuating high unemployment." Spending cuts and rate hikes would be even bigger mistakes, he says. "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it; we did, and we are."  [View news story]
    Your comment is based on flawed economics. Why is it always assumed that industry has no long term cost impact on the enviroment?

    For example, what would be the free enterprise solution to mercury released into the environment from coal combustion?
    Jun 6, 2011. 12:52 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. has already repeated a version of the mistake of 1937 with "the mistake of 2010," Paul Krugman writes: "withdrawing fiscal support much too early and perpetuating high unemployment." Spending cuts and rate hikes would be even bigger mistakes, he says. "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it; we did, and we are."  [View news story]
    The problem with free enterprise is perfectly illustrated by the existence of US ITAR regulations.
    Jun 6, 2011. 12:46 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. has already repeated a version of the mistake of 1937 with "the mistake of 2010," Paul Krugman writes: "withdrawing fiscal support much too early and perpetuating high unemployment." Spending cuts and rate hikes would be even bigger mistakes, he says. "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it; we did, and we are."  [View news story]
    Dude,

    Only an operations guy would think like this. There is a tiny inconvienence regarding patents, in the vast majority of cases, they haven't been reduced to practice. IBM as a tech powerhouse is so yesterday. DARPA funds a lot of cooler stuff.
    Jun 6, 2011. 12:41 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. has already repeated a version of the mistake of 1937 with "the mistake of 2010," Paul Krugman writes: "withdrawing fiscal support much too early and perpetuating high unemployment." Spending cuts and rate hikes would be even bigger mistakes, he says. "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it; we did, and we are."  [View news story]
    So Wyatt, there is no cronyism in the private sector?
    Jun 6, 2011. 12:34 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. has already repeated a version of the mistake of 1937 with "the mistake of 2010," Paul Krugman writes: "withdrawing fiscal support much too early and perpetuating high unemployment." Spending cuts and rate hikes would be even bigger mistakes, he says. "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it; we did, and we are."  [View news story]
    Dude,

    Lightway is even more correct than you think. Do you really understand the basis for most of the developments in modern computing?

    1) The government funding of early computers like Eniac was to speed up the calculation of artillery tables.

    2) The government exclusively funded all the early development of high speed computing (CDC and Cray) for nuclear bomb simulation.

    3) Early high speed electronics based on GaAs chips was kick started by a government Mantech program. This technology was used in the early Cray's and also forms the basis later on for some of the chip technology in cell phones.

    4) The push for fundamental software reliability is basically another government funded initiative.

    5) Early work in parallel programming and processing was the exclusive purview of the national labs in the beginning.

    etc etc
    Jun 6, 2011. 12:32 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. has already repeated a version of the mistake of 1937 with "the mistake of 2010," Paul Krugman writes: "withdrawing fiscal support much too early and perpetuating high unemployment." Spending cuts and rate hikes would be even bigger mistakes, he says. "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it; we did, and we are."  [View news story]

    Dude,

    You sound like an manager or finance guy working in high tech, doesn't count.
    Jun 6, 2011. 12:18 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. has already repeated a version of the mistake of 1937 with "the mistake of 2010," Paul Krugman writes: "withdrawing fiscal support much too early and perpetuating high unemployment." Spending cuts and rate hikes would be even bigger mistakes, he says. "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it; we did, and we are."  [View news story]
    Dude,

    Don't try to dunk on me.

    1) Robert Goddard in the US invented rocketry. What the Germany did was derivative.

    2) You republicans constantly trumpet small companies as the agents of job creation. Please get your story straight. Are small businesses job creators or not?

    3) Business size likely follows some kind of power law distribution. So there are a lot more small companies than big companies.

    4) Private equity firms don't necessarily do things in the economic and national interest of the United States.

    5) Most employees are not in a position to innovate whether public or private.
    Jun 6, 2011. 12:11 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • The U.S. has already repeated a version of the mistake of 1937 with "the mistake of 2010," Paul Krugman writes: "withdrawing fiscal support much too early and perpetuating high unemployment." Spending cuts and rate hikes would be even bigger mistakes, he says. "Those who refuse to learn from history are condemned to repeat it; we did, and we are."  [View news story]
    Wyatt,

    The reason why the USPS loses money is because of the indirect subsidy of republicans. It's very efficient to deliver mail/packages in urban areas where the majority of liberal antibusiness socialists live. It's very inefficient to operate the USPS in rural areas where the majority free market, anti welfare, self sufficient republicans live. Yet another example of blue states subsidizing red states for the benefit of the overall welfare of the United States.

    To paraphrase Adm. Zumwalt, there isn't a blue US or a red US there is the United States of America.
    Jun 5, 2011. 11:53 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
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