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  #121  
Old 06-22-2011, 11:25 PM
CrowsMakeTools CrowsMakeTools is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

Quote:
Originally Posted by piscivorous View Post
Actually fro the CBO scoring the doc fix by law had to be considered in their guesstimates; even if reality and legislative history says that it will never be enacted. It is one of the primary reasons for the administration's claim that it this boondoggle piece of crap legislation, which went unread before passage, will produce savings from thin air.
This is slightly confused. The "Doc Fix" is actually the annual legislation that is passed to maintain the physician reimbursement schedule; if Congress does not enact the annual "Doc fix," Medicare reimbursement will drop.

The sustainable growth rate (SGR) was set by Congress in 1997 to control the growth of Medicare expenditures. The law mandates that fees be reduced if aggregate payments for services increase beyond the sustainable rate of growth. Congress has passed so called "Doc Fix" legislation every year since 2003 to put off the scheduled decreases in fees, and the cumulative impact of the doc fixes in the past 8 years has been to increase the size of the proposed fee reductions every year, in order to return to the sustainable growth rate. The Doc Fix passed this year will expire on 31 December 2011, and, if no further action (i.e., the next doc fix) is enacted, Medicare reimbursements will be cut across the board by 29.5% on January 1, 2012. The Obama administration proposed legislation to fix the problem but the proposals did not go through Congress.

The CBO can only base their estimates on what the current law says, and The scheduled 29.5% reduction in fees would create a situation for many providers (myself included), where the cost of providing care would actually exceed reimbursement, i.e., you lose money on every patient you treat. If Congress does not enact a Doc Fix by 2012 many providers will have to withdraw from participating in Medicare.

The current problem requiring the Doc fix legislation is the result of the legislation enacted in 1997, and both Republican-controlled and Democratic-controlled legislatures have collaborated in this unsustainable situation since that time.

Neither party has proposed legislation that will propose the increase in healthcare costs. The Ryan plan, which exempts people 55 or older from facing any changes, is like saying you are going to lose weight by continuing your current lifestyle and then telling younger people to go on an 800 calorie a day diet in 10 years.

Health care costs will continue to grow, as will expenditures, until we change the system to one in which providers are paid to achieve outcomes, rather than do procedures.

Last edited by CrowsMakeTools; 06-22-2011 at 11:31 PM..
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  #122  
Old 06-22-2011, 11:27 PM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by CrowsMakeTools View Post
This is slightly confused. The "Doc Fix" is actually the annual legislation that is passed to maintain the physician reimbursement schedule; if Congress does not enact the annual "Doc fix," Medicare reimbursement will drop.
Full circle. The doc fix raises its ugly head again.
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  #123  
Old 06-23-2011, 12:10 AM
piscivorous piscivorous is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

I've always loved a good rant and I commend you on this one. Perhaps if you would broaden your scope and somewhere in your reasoned arguments acknowledged that this is a phenomena not unique to the nefarious "wingnut/libertarian" cabal one would find it more than entertaining. I do disagree that money is "..one of the great impediments to real democracy..", which amounts to not much more than the tyranny of the majority, but I will acknowledge it's influence in representative governance; the single impediment to either lies not in a object but in the frailty of human character.

Last edited by piscivorous; 06-23-2011 at 12:28 AM..
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  #124  
Old 06-23-2011, 12:24 AM
piscivorous piscivorous is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

Yes I got this one backwards. I plead haste and sloppy reading. When I realized my error I let it sit,instead of revising it, mostly to see who if anyone would catch it.
Congrats.

Last edited by piscivorous; 06-23-2011 at 12:30 AM..
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  #125  
Old 06-23-2011, 12:27 AM
chiwhisoxx chiwhisoxx is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by TwinSwords View Post
If you believe that the people and corporations -- corporations! -- who fund think tanks, policy planning networks, policy institutions, and foundations are doing so without any expectation of some benefit redounding to themselves, you're more naive than I thought. Most of the aforementioned institutions exist to influence public opinion or to shape policy at all levels of government, from local to state to federal. That's simply what they are for. They provide the funding and organizational framework necessary to hire a bunch of intellectuals who can, in turn, crank out the kinds of bodies of intellectual work product -- books, films, lectures, newspaper and magazine articles, web sites, television and radio appearances and programming, consultation with political staff, political parties, political candidates, polling firms, etc. -- that can in turn help the institutions achieve their policy or ideological objectives.

Many of your posts give me the impression that you have studied political science. If that's the case, I cannot believe you don't already know this stuff -- assuming your issue is not just with my tone but with the factual basis for the observation.

Obviously some of the individuals who are hired into these institutions come at the job with a pure passion for political theory or political philosophy, but that's how the free market works. A corporation might want to find a way to build a better light bulb because they calculate that they can charge a high price and secure a larger portion of the market. The corporate calculation is all dollars and cents (as it should be, in a case like this). It would be pretty naive to think that the corporation has significant or controlling interests that go much, if at all, beyond raw profit motive. Ultimately, the corporation doesn't care how the engineers and scientists achieve the stated objective (within some obvious ethical and legal constraints); they just care that the better light bulb is discovered and manufacturable. The scientists and engineers they hire, on the other hand, may have a completely different set of motivations. A corporation may well hire a guy who has a passion for reducing energy consumption for purposes of saving the planet (to cite but one possible motivation), but it would be a mistake to confuse his motivation with that of the corporation.

The policy planning network (think tanks, foundations, institutions, etc.) pretty much exists for the same purpose: they have certain broad goals, say, to provide justification and defense for the State of Israel, help foster legislation and national policy (State Department, Defense Department) that will redound to the benefit of Israel. The institution will, over time, hire literally hundreds of individuals with myriad talents to work on thousands of different projects and pursue thousands of different avenues to accomplish the objective, but there is, clearly, a core objective towards which they are all working. No one is naive enough to think that the people hired by the pro-Israel institution is free to work on whatever she desires, or to generate scholarship or work product that runs contrary to the stated goals of the institution.

Take another example: American Enterprise Institute. This is a body that has a broad interest in promoting conservative and libertarian economic theories and government policy. They want to generate scholarship and other work product to (among other things) support efforts to reduce government spending on programs that benefit the population at large, and in turn to reduce the taxes that are needed to pay for those services. So, one day, along comes Charles Murray. AEI didn't necessary come into existence because it wanted to generate racist scholarship to support theories of white supremacy. But Murray's work fit perfectly in the AEI wheelhouse. While most people think that Murray's book was simply a work of racist scholarship that set out to prove the genetic inferiority of black people, in fact there was another purpose: to eliminate the justification for a host of social programs that were developed to correct the disparities between blacks and whites: everything from affirmative action to Head Start to education to welfare -- all of which had long been targets of AEI and the conservative/libertarian movement more broadly. The people who dumped money into AEI were doing so, at least in part, for that very purpose: To generate the necessary scholarship and work product (what I originally called the intellectual justification) to wipe out those programs. Murray's approach was quite bold and novel: He said that money spent trying to close the achievement gap between blacks and whites is wasted because black people are just naturally inferior, and no amount of remediation efforts can overcome the natural inborn deficiencies from which blacks suffer. The book was a massive hit among conservatives, libertarians, and Republicans. (It had the added benefit of absolving white Americans from any sense of responsibility for the condition of blacks in America; it wasn't due to centuries of repression or because of racism, but because blacks were inherently inferior.)

The Murray case is another illustration how the whole policy planning network functions, and how the money injected into them is intended to generate the kind of intellectual justifications necessary to advance policy goals that were defined at the outset, before the scholarship was generated.

The libertarian think thanks, of which there are a great many, and which receive their funding from corporations and wealthy individuals, are no different. They have a set of policy preferences they exist to promote, and they hire staff who they set free to figure out ways to advance those preferences.

So, again: There is nothing even remotely controversial about my original suggestion that there is "a lot of corporate cash being pumped into the wingnut/libertarian think tanks to provide the intellectual rationale for policies" their donors prefer.

American politics is all about the money; it's one of the great impediments to real democracy and real representative government. Given this reality, corporations and other wealthy interests know they can manipulate political outcomes through robust lobbying and funding of policy planning networks.
You're right. There's absolutely nothing controversial about that statement. It's almost so banal it's not worth saying. The reason I or someone else might take exception to that (and I think you know why, but I feel like you're playing coy to an extent) is that you make it seem like this is the exclusive province of the conservative movement. If I take your sentence about lots of money being poured into think tanks for wingnut causes and replaced wingnut with moonbat, that wouldn't be a remotely controversial statement either.
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  #126  
Old 06-23-2011, 12:38 AM
CrowsMakeTools CrowsMakeTools is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control, Ron Paul and Rick Perry

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Originally Posted by look View Post
Concentrate, CMT, the big story is the whites beat out the Asians.
Different data sources will provide different estimates. There are some general trends. The Alliance for Excellent Education addresses some of the issues in estimating 4-year graduation rates. The data they report for 2005-2006 show 4 year graduation rates for Asians at 85%, and whites at 76%. Hispanics, as in most surveys, lag behind, at 56%. Some of the lag in Hispanic achievement must be related to immigration, but other data sources show persistent gaps in educational attainment even after three generations of US residency for Hispanics.

The low rates of 4-year high school graduation for African Americans (53%) and Native Americans (52%) in Texas indicate that factors beside immigration status are contributing to the high rates of high school non-completion in Texas.

see: http://www.all4ed.org/files/Texas_wc.pdf
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  #127  
Old 06-23-2011, 01:02 AM
look look is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control, Ron Paul and Rick Perry

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Originally Posted by CrowsMakeTools View Post
Different data sources will provide different estimates. There are some general trends. The Alliance for Excellent Education addresses some of the issues in estimating 4-year graduation rates. The data they report for 2005-2006 show 4 year graduation rates for Asians at 85%, and whites at 76%. Hispanics, as in most surveys, lag behind, at 56%. Some of the lag in Hispanic achievement must be related to immigration, but other data sources show persistent gaps in educational attainment even after three generations of US residency for Hispanics.

The low rates of 4-year high school graduation for African Americans (53%) and Native Americans (52%) in Texas indicate that factors beside immigration status are contributing to the high rates of high school non-completion in Texas.

see: http://www.all4ed.org/files/Texas_wc.pdf
Thanks. Those are depressing numbers. Going to bed now, but I'll be interested to look at your link tomorrow
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  #128  
Old 06-23-2011, 02:24 AM
chiwhisoxx chiwhisoxx is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

somehow i'm not shocked that the guy on from frumforum.com is incredibly haughty...that little shtick about "here at the frumforum, we have higher standards for our candidates and expect a little bit more"....gag. he was right on substance in dissing gold bugs, but find a way to be less of a condescending prick about it.

edit: heh, this gets kind of funny towards the end. I thought conn's bemused attitude towards Noah was appropriate and pretty funny at moments.
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Last edited by chiwhisoxx; 06-23-2011 at 02:34 AM..
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  #129  
Old 06-23-2011, 03:05 AM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx View Post
somehow i'm not shocked that the guy on from frumforum.com is incredibly haughty...that little shtick about "here at the frumforum, we have higher standards for our candidates and expect a little bit more"....gag. he was right on substance in dissing gold bugs, but find a way to be less of a condescending prick about it.

edit: heh, this gets kind of funny towards the end. I thought conn's bemused attitude towards Noah was appropriate and pretty funny at moments.
I'm more inclined to forgive condescension towards gold bugs. I mean, how exactly does one talk about people that are very enthusiastic about their totally batshit insane pet cause in a polite way without somehow legitimizing their craziness? Should we be so carefully respectful of people who were this excited about the idea that the Earth is really flat, or people that still think their kid got Autism from the MMR vaccine, or Young Earth Creationists?

I mean, the idiocy of a gold standard is about as established a consensus as you can possibly have in economics. People that want to reinstate it might as well have a big flashing neon sign over their head saying "my opinions have no relationship to reality whatsoever, so don't bother trying to convince me of anything." If someone is so proudly and aggressively ignorant, do we really have an obligation to treat their position with respect?
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  #130  
Old 06-23-2011, 06:01 AM
sugarkang sugarkang is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
I'm more inclined to forgive condescension towards gold bugs. I mean, how exactly does one talk about people that are very enthusiastic about their totally batshit insane pet cause in a polite way without somehow legitimizing their craziness?
...

I mean, the idiocy of a gold standard is about as established a consensus as you can possibly have in economics. People that want to reinstate it might as well have a big flashing neon sign over their head saying "my opinions have no relationship to reality whatsoever, so don't bother trying to convince me of anything."
Yes, because in the last half decade, gold has appreciated more than Google stock. Is that what you mean by having no relationship to reality, Don Zeko? Or was I just arguing in abstractions and generalizations again?

Having said that, I understand Paul Krugman's charge that Ron Paul is a "paleo-monetarist." Too lazy to Google what he called him; sorry if that isn't the exact term. While it's true that QE1 or QE2 didn't affect the normal inflation rules, i.e., too many dollars chasing too few goods, to say that gold standard is about as established as a consensus just means: yes, all but one of us believe the Earth is flat.

In other words, consensus, by itself, doesn't tell you shit and justification by consensus is, frankly, the laziest of lazy thinking.
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Last edited by sugarkang; 06-23-2011 at 06:03 AM..
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  #131  
Old 06-23-2011, 07:47 AM
Ocean Ocean is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
... "my opinions have no relationship to reality whatsoever, so don't bother trying to convince me of anything." If someone is so proudly and aggressively ignorant, do we really have an obligation to treat their position with respect?
According to Bob Wright and his forum policies, yes.
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  #132  
Old 06-23-2011, 08:33 AM
operative operative is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
I mean, the idiocy of a gold standard is about as established a consensus as you can possibly have in economics.
Not really. There are no publishing geologists who endorse the Young Earth Society. There are a number of publishing economists with academic positions who endorse the gold standard. It is a heterodox view, not an unheard of view. You ought to know the difference.
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  #133  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:15 AM
look look is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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According to Bob Wright and his forum policies, yes.
You sound like one of The Offended.
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  #134  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:18 AM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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You sound like one of The Offended.
And you will never be able to live down that you are a scold and a snitch and a lickspittle. It's all a click away!
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  #135  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:21 AM
look look is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by sugarkang View Post
We also tend to question the system as it exists now, regardless of which party is in power. We uphold principles, not groups. That means we stand up for your constitutional rights whether you are the KKK or Muslims who want to build a mosque. We stand up for what we believe in the face of overwhelming opposition. While Democrats and Republicans both believe that the world would be a better place as long as the other side were eradicated like the dirty cockroaches that they are, only libertarianism accepts the peaceful coexistence of different moral systems.

But you were saying about Ayn Rand? As I understand it, she lived under Lenin and has experienced coerced altruism, firsthand. One might even draw a parallel to Sergey Brin, also a Russian Jew. Admittedly, he's likely filled with "adolescent idealism" and has "too much money" for his own good, becoming a billionaire so early and all. After all, it's only when you're a spoiled, filthy rich capitalist that you can decide to pull your multi-billion dollar business out of China based on objections to totalitarianism. Totalitarian, collectivist, whatever. Filthy Russian Jews is what they were. Right?
I was puzzled last night by your last sentence. You got on DZ for race baiting; I'm wondering where the Jew thing fits into your criticism of HB.
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  #136  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:22 AM
look look is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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And you will never be able to live down that you are a scold and a snitch and a lickspittle. It's all a click away!
Hey, Quick-draw, I see you're ready to go! Maybe Ocean can answer her own messages...?
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  #137  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:24 AM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by look View Post
Hey, Quick-draw, I see you're ready to go! Maybe Ocean can answer her own messages...?
Hey slow-witted one:
Quote:
Originally Posted by look View Post
This is a discussion board, let's discuss things without impugning our interlocutor's honor.
I'm guessing she has the good sense to have you on ignore. I enjoy the pain.
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  #138  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:26 AM
look look is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by graz View Post
Hey slow-witted one:
Either say what you mean or go away.
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  #139  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:27 AM
look look is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Hey slow-witted one:

I'm guessing she has the good sense to have you on ignore. I enjoy the pain.
And you don't have the good sense to do the same...darn.
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  #140  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:28 AM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by look View Post
Either say what you mean or go away.
Our love is here to stay.
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Originally Posted by look View Post
Aw, graz, you know you like me.
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  #141  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:29 AM
look look is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Our love is here to stay.
Always and forever.
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  #142  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:31 AM
sugarkang sugarkang is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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I was puzzled last night by your last sentence. You got on DZ for race baiting; I'm wondering where the Jew thing fits into your criticism of HB.
I was just being a dick.
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  #143  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:42 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by look View Post
And you don't have the good sense to do the same...darn.

So here's the thing...this amazing ignore tool isn't amazing at all. I tried it once but all that happens is that in the forum the person's name has an ignore something or other next to it. It's like a reminder that you're ignoring the person and not to click on it. Danger Will Robinson!!. But the post isn't showing anyway.

Why can't you just not read posts from people you don't like and leave it at that. I think it's just a tool to punish people with.

I'm ignoring you!! nananana
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  #144  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:52 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by look View Post
I was puzzled last night by your last sentence. You got on DZ for race baiting; I'm wondering where the Jew thing fits into your criticism of HB.
Not much going on this morning. Everyone's ignoring me. I saw your query to sapeye and I wanted to speak for him because he isn't capable of speaking for himself. (I refuse to put a smiley face, but I am kidding)

Quote:
But you were saying about Ayn Rand? As I understand it, she lived under Lenin and has experienced coerced altruism, firsthand. ... Totalitarian, collectivist, whatever. Filthy Russian Jews is what they were. Right?
I think here is is trying to point out the stereotypes surrounding Jews and maybe especially Russian Jews, for some reason. One of the stereotypes is that they are rich and spoiled and the other is that people hate them because of that. It was basically a rant.

And here's a question for you...what does the term race bating mean to you?
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  #145  
Old 06-23-2011, 09:57 AM
operative operative is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by badhatharry View Post
So here's the thing...this amazing ignore tool isn't amazing at all. I tried it once but all that happens is that in the forum the person's name has an ignore something or other next to it. It's like a reminder that you're ignoring the person and not to click on it. Danger Will Robinson!!. But the post isn't showing anyway.

Why can't you just not read posts from people you don't like and leave it at that. I think it's just a tool to punish people with.

I'm ignoring you!! nananana
Exactly. I've never put someone on my ignore list, but there are some people whose posts I will tend not to read.
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  #146  
Old 06-23-2011, 10:08 AM
joe_mask joe_mask is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

Ayn Rand may not be your cup of tea, so excuse me for the assumption of fidelity to the creed. I'm not familiar enough with Hayek, so I'll defer to your judgement as to his qualitative distinction. However, he seems to be saying much the same when he extolls the virtues of capitalism and free markets without (to my knowledge) addressing the question of whether both are in existence or even possible. Said another way, I think its quite possible to have free markets and not have capitalism, or to have capitalism without free markets, as we do now.

Libertarian thought supposedly is classic liberalism and in that we find conversations and arguments about liberty, the primacy of the individual and the yearning for a non-coercive existence. The classic liberal wants to be free to pursue their interests unfettered by collective claims and assumes that private charity and individual industry will provide all the necessary institutions of cohesive (may I say "positive"?) social action. I find this ridiculously ahistorical.

I have always been struck by how many libertarians I know who went to public schools, like their parents and grandparents. They grew up enjoying the benefits of the TVA, The GI Bill, national parks, public health and sewer systems and roads, enjoyed the protection of modern police and firefighters. Some even work for the government and if not, I can easily point out how public funds made possible, in substantial ways, the private enterprise they own or are employed by.

Yet, born on second base through the legacy of public action they inherited, they nontheless proclaim themselves an extra-base hitter.

BTW, your understanding of market-based pricing results are accurate but beside the point. When looking at the source for "value", Adam Smith, Karl Marx, Alan Greenspan, Frederich Von Hayek, David Riccardo, Paul Samuelson and your college economics professor are all in agreement: Value is "added" by labor. A stick is a stick until you fashion it into a chair. Then, the stick's value has been added to by labor and thus it is now worth more. If you pick up a stick and sell it to someone I congratulate you on your marketing skills but you have added nothing to the value of the stick.
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  #147  
Old 06-23-2011, 10:20 AM
operative operative is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by joe_mask View Post
Ayn Rand may not be your cup of tea, so excuse me for the assumption of fidelity to the creed. I'm not familiar enough with Hayek, so I'll defer to your judgement as to his qualitative distinction. However, he seems to be saying much the same when he extolls the virtues of capitalism and free markets without (to my knowledge) addressing the question of whether both are in existence or even possible. Said another way, I think its quite possible to have free markets and not have capitalism, or to have capitalism without free markets, as we do now.

Libertarian thought supposedly is classic liberalism and in that we find conversations and arguments about liberty, the primacy of the individual and the yearning for a non-coercive existence. The classic liberal wants to be free to pursue their interests unfettered by collective claims and assumes that private charity and individual industry will provide all the necessary institutions of cohesive (may I say "positive"?) social action. I find this ridiculously ahistorical.

I have always been struck by how many libertarians I know who went to public schools, like their parents and grandparents. They grew up enjoying the benefits of the TVA, The GI Bill, national parks, public health and sewer systems and roads, enjoyed the protection of modern police and firefighters. Some even work for the government and if not, I can easily point out how public funds made possible, in substantial ways, the private enterprise they own or are employed by.

Yet, born on second base through the legacy of public action they inherited, they nontheless proclaim themselves an extra-base hitter.

BTW, your understanding of market-based pricing results are accurate but beside the point. When looking at the source for "value", Adam Smith, Karl Marx, Alan Greenspan, Frederich Von Hayek, David Riccardo, Paul Samuelson and your college economics professor are all in agreement: Value is "added" by labor. A stick is a stick until you fashion it into a chair. Then, the stick's value has been added to by labor and thus it is now worth more. If you pick up a stick and sell it to someone I congratulate you on your marketing skills but you have added nothing to the value of the stick.
The labor theory of value, which you seem to be espousing, has been widely discredited. It is, in fact, illogical at its basic core, because it says that the same good is more valuable when it is made through a low-efficiency manufacturing process than a high-efficiency one, which makes no sense.

For your example, if people do not understand the value of a good then the good has no value. I may create a sculpture that I find to be stunning, but if no one wants to buy it, then in the economic system it is worthless. If, however, you offer to sell it and convince a person that it is a terrific piece of art, and that person then pays $1000 for it, then it has value. Yet by your standard, you would deserve nothing and I would deserve everything. But without you, the transaction never would've happened and the good would have no economic value.

You can define capitalism however you like, just as people define democracy however they like. So saying that there can be capitalism without free markets means very little in and of itself. It's abundantly clear, however, that free markets will give you greater prosperity than non-free ones.

As for the arguments about libertarians having grown up receiving state benefits, what does that matter? If you grew up in Iron Rice Bowl era China, receiving its benefits, would you be unfit to criticize the system? If you are growing up in Estonia today, enjoying the economic dynamism that comes from economic freedom, should you not offer any criticism?
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  #148  
Old 06-23-2011, 10:24 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Yes, because in the last half decade, gold has appreciated more than Google stock. Is that what you mean by having no relationship to reality, Don Zeko? Or was I just arguing in abstractions and generalizations again?

Having said that, I understand Paul Krugman's charge that Ron Paul is a "paleo-monetarist." Too lazy to Google what he called him; sorry if that isn't the exact term. While it's true that QE1 or QE2 didn't affect the normal inflation rules, i.e., too many dollars chasing too few goods, to say that gold standard is about as established as a consensus just means: yes, all but one of us believe the Earth is flat.

In other words, consensus, by itself, doesn't tell you shit and justification by consensus is, frankly, the laziest of lazy thinking.
But the price of gold is something separate from wanting to go back to the gold standard. I think Don Zeko was using the term gold bug incorrectly, however. He thinks people who want to go back to the gold standard don't deserve to be taken seriously. Personally, I'd like to know more about the whole issue but that would probably entail some reading and thinking.

And I agree that Krugman may be just as crazy as any gold standard aficionado in that he believes so strongly in his Keynesian schemes. He is not alone. I heard Diamond talking about removing his name from the Fed consideration process. He was all about more stimulus. This guy is from MIT and he insists that we just need more stimulus and everything will work out. The pump simply needs more priming.
That Keynes fellow made a big impression.
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  #149  
Old 06-23-2011, 10:53 AM
look look is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Not much going on this morning. Everyone's ignoring me. I saw your query to sapeye and I wanted to speak for him because he isn't capable of speaking for himself. (I refuse to put a smiley face, but I am kidding)



I think here is is trying to point out the stereotypes surrounding Jews and maybe especially Russian Jews, for some reason. One of the stereotypes is that they are rich and spoiled and the other is that people hate them because of that. It was basically a rant.

And here's a question for you...what does the term race bating mean to you?
Race baiting, to me, is insinuating that someone is racist.
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  #150  
Old 06-23-2011, 10:57 AM
look look is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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So here's the thing...this amazing ignore tool isn't amazing at all. I tried it once but all that happens is that in the forum the person's name has an ignore something or other next to it. It's like a reminder that you're ignoring the person and not to click on it. Danger Will Robinson!!. But the post isn't showing anyway.

Why can't you just not read posts from people you don't like and leave it at that. I think it's just a tool to punish people with.

I'm ignoring you!! nananana
The ignore function can be a time saver. I use the linear view, so I scroll through all the comments. It's pretty peaceful to scroll through a thread being dominated by those you'd rather pass by at the time. It's kind of like using the mute button. Currently, I only have one person on my ignore list, but that doesn't mean I won't click open a post if curious.
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  #151  
Old 06-23-2011, 11:00 AM
sugarkang sugarkang is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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But the price of gold is something separate from wanting to go back to the gold standard. I think Don Zeko was using the term gold bug incorrectly, however. He thinks people who want to go back to the gold standard don't deserve to be taken seriously. Personally, I'd like to know more about the whole issue but that would probably entail some reading and thinking.
Absolutely. I tend to try to keep my "angry" comments short because they can get TL;DR really fast. I'll clarify.

My criticism of Don Zeko doesn't stem from him disliking the gold standard. Heck, I don't even want a gold standard. My criticism is that he doesn't even know why we had one in the first place. As I pointed to earlier, his argument is pretty much, "Everybody knows it's true ZOMG."

So, because money in the form of cash bills are actually just receipts for something of real value and not the actual value, but people use the cash interchangeably as if they were of real value, those in power of the printing press tend to just print the crap. Zimbabwe comes to mind. So, if we're using fiat money (cash), having it backed by gold means that whoever is in power, citizens holding fiat money will not have their wealth eroded by some dickhead like Hugo Chavez with his 30% inflation rate.

So, if we compare the rise in value of gold over the past decade vs the prices of actual commodities, it would appear that things haven't actually gotten more expensive. In fact, they've gotten a shitload cheaper. That's if you had kept your money in gold, like the old kook Ron Paul says we should do.

Now, there are practical reasons why we can't do the gold standard. I'm sure Noah has many technical wonk terms he'd like to throw around. I'd say, as a general matter, it has to do with the US dollar being the world's reserve currency and that requires flexibility to "print" as we see fit. Plus, the existence of petro dollars renders gold unnecessary. We live in a fiat world, but it's not fake if we all believe it's true. *

That is, if we think the emperor is wearing clothes, he is wearing clothes. It doesn't matter that a child points out otherwise.

* but then, there's bitcoin.

Oh, and with regard to Keynes, I'd say that I'm not Keynesian, but also not anti-Keynes, either. I care about the truth, in general. Paul Krugman is a cock, but it doesn't make him wrong. It also doesn't make him right. I try to balance my views out with Mankiw and Cowen, but macro-economics is closer to religion than science. Truth is, nobody really fucking knows.
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  #152  
Old 06-23-2011, 11:02 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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However, he seems to be saying much the same when he extolls the virtues of capitalism and free markets without (to my knowledge) addressing the question of whether both are in existence or even possible. Said another way, I think its quite possible to have free markets and not have capitalism, or to have capitalism without free markets, as we do now.



Value is "added" by labor. A stick is a stick until you fashion it into a chair. Then, the stick's value has been added to by labor and thus it is now worth more. If you pick up a stick and sell it to someone I congratulate you on your marketing skills but you have added nothing to the value of the stick.
Great post. I would like to just make a few observations.

Free markets do not exist, I agree. I think it would be accurate to say Hayek believed that freer markets are better than planned markets.

And as for the stick and value...yes, something has been added to the stick when you fashion it into a chair but it isn't until someone is willing to buy it for more that they would a stick that the value is determined, IMO.

I may be misinterpreting the term value, however.
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  #153  
Old 06-23-2011, 11:08 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Race baiting, to me, is insinuating that someone is racist.
Aha, and it can come in all sorts of ingenious forms. That's why is doesn't always look the same. Is playing the race card essentially the same thing?
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  #154  
Old 06-23-2011, 11:27 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Oh, and with regard to Keynes, I'd say that I'm not Keynesian, but also not anti-Keynes, either. I care about the truth, in general. Paul Krugman is a cock, but it doesn't make him wrong. It also doesn't make him right. I try to balance my views out with Mankiw and Cowen, but macro-economics is closer to religion than science. Truth is, nobody really fucking knows.
I always wonder about owning gold. I mean if the economy is in such a state that you need to gather yours up, who's to say you'll be able to? It's kind of like being a Mormon with a basement full of food and all of your neighbors are hungry. When the rule of law goes...

And I agree that no one knows. Krugman seems to think he knows, however. Sigh!
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  #155  
Old 06-23-2011, 11:28 AM
look look is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Aha, and it can come in all sorts of ingenious forms. That's why is doesn't always look the same. Is playing the race card essentially the same thing?
I hesitated before hitting the 'submit' button, considering race card, etc.

Three examples of race-baiting to me:

DZ saying to op regarding secession (paraphrase): no wonder blacks avoid the GOP.

Obama saying during the campaign (paraphrase): now they'll say he doesn't look like anyone's picture printed on money.

The Congressional Black Caucus marching through the crowd holding up cameras on their way to sign the healthcare bill.

I don't know if race-baiting is just a form of playing the race card, or if the terms are interchangeable.

ymmv
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  #156  
Old 06-23-2011, 11:29 AM
operative operative is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Originally Posted by badhatharry View Post
I always wonder about owning gold. I mean if the economy is in such a state that you need to gather yours up, who's to say you'll be able to. It's kind of like being a Mormon with a basement full of food and all of your neighbors are hungry. When the rule of law goes...

And I agree that no one knows. Krugman seems to think he knows, however. Sigh!
In regards to Keynes, he was a Stagnationist and his out look is essentially Stagnationism. In regards to Krugman, the less said about the angry little fool, the better. Keynes was a respectable (but very mistaken) economist. Krugman is a dishonorable hack.
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  #157  
Old 06-23-2011, 11:43 AM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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Absolutely. I tend to try to keep my "angry" comments short because they can get TL;DR really fast. I'll clarify.

My criticism of Don Zeko doesn't stem from him disliking the gold standard. Heck, I don't even want a gold standard. My criticism is that he doesn't even know why we had one in the first place. As I pointed to earlier, his argument is pretty much, "Everybody knows it's true ZOMG."

So, because money in the form of cash bills are actually just receipts for something of real value and not the actual value, but people use the cash interchangeably as if they were of real value, those in power of the printing press tend to just print the crap. Zimbabwe comes to mind. So, if we're using fiat money (cash), having it backed by gold means that whoever is in power, citizens holding fiat money will not have their wealth eroded by some dickhead like Hugo Chavez with his 30% inflation rate.

So, if we compare the rise in value of gold over the past decade vs the prices of actual commodities, it would appear that things haven't actually gotten more expensive. In fact, they've gotten a shitload cheaper. That's if you had kept your money in gold, like the old kook Ron Paul says we should do.

Now, there are practical reasons why we can't do the gold standard. I'm sure Noah has many technical wonk terms he'd like to throw around. I'd say, as a general matter, it has to do with the US dollar being the world's reserve currency and that requires flexibility to "print" as we see fit. Plus, the existence of petro dollars renders gold unnecessary. We live in a fiat world, but it's not fake if we all believe it's true. *

That is, if we think the emperor is wearing clothes, he is wearing clothes. It doesn't matter that a child points out otherwise.

* but then, there's bitcoin.

Oh, and with regard to Keynes, I'd say that I'm not Keynesian, but also not anti-Keynes, either. I care about the truth, in general. Paul Krugman is a cock, but it doesn't make him wrong. It also doesn't make him right. I try to balance my views out with Mankiw and Cowen, but macro-economics is closer to religion than science. Truth is, nobody really fucking knows.
The fact that I didn't explain in my prior post exactly why the Gold Standard is stupid could be explained in two ways. The first is that I don't have any idea why the gold standard is bad and am blindly parroting other people I agree with. The second is that I was making a different point, namely arguing about how we should treat people who want to go back to the gold standard, and that that discussion runs a lot more smoothly if one simply assumes that we all agree on the actual wisdom of fiat money and then move on to talking about what Chiwi and I were trying to talk about. And I see that you, being a man of class and distinction, assumed that the former was the case. Sigh.

Anyway, the gold standard is fucking retarded because it ties monetary policy to the supply of a given commodity. It does not, as you imply in your post, ensure that you'll never have inflation, although in practice the gold standard has tended to be deflationary rather than inflationary, because the supply of gold could easily increase or decrease based upon events in the world that we don't have any control over. So if we're cruising along, doing our thing with gold-backed currency, and suddenly a new industrial process comes along that dramatically increases the demand for gold, then the supply of it drops, the money supply drops, and we get a recession for absolutely no good reason whatsoever. Similarly, if someone happens to find a big new source of gold, that floods the market, drops the value of gold, and suddenly we have arbitrary and unnecessary inflation.

In practice, however, economic growth has tended to outpace the rate at which gold is mined, so the gold standard has tended to be deflationary rather than inflationary. You recognize this in your post, with your argument that the gold standard keeps us safe from irresponsible politicians causing inflationary spirals. But while 30% inflation is a disaster, deflation is also a disaster, and the gold standard has a history of encouraging that. But don't take my word for it:

Quote:
Ben Bernanke and Harold James, in a paper called "The Gold Standard, Deflation, and Financial Crisis in the Great Depression: An International Comparison" published in 1991 (NBER working paper version here), noted that 13 other countries besides the U.K. had decided to abandon their currencies' gold parity in 1931. Bernanke and James' data for the average growth rate of industrial production for these countries (plotted in the top panel above) was positive in every year from 1932 on. Countries that stayed on gold, by contrast, experienced an average output decline of 15% in 1932. The U.S. abandoned gold in 1933, after which its dramatic recovery immediately began. The same happened after Italy dropped the gold standard in 1934, and for Belgium when it went off in 1935. On the other hand, the three countries that stuck with gold through 1936 (France, Netherlands, and Poland) saw a 6% drop in industrial production in 1935, while the rest of the world was experiencing solid growth.
And of course what's really bizarre about your argument is that, of all of our economic problems at the moment, runaway inflation is emphatically not one of them, nor has it been any time in the recent or not-so-recent past. Since the late 70's, the Fed has consistently succeeded in tamping down inflation while failing to provide full employment. that's great if you rely on investment income or rents to pay the bills, but it's a slow-motion catastrophe for working Americans that has only gotten worse as we "recover" from the great recession.
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  #158  
Old 06-23-2011, 01:08 PM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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In regards to Keynes, he was a Stagnationist and his out look is essentially Stagnationism. In regards to Krugman, the less said about the angry little fool, the better. Keynes was a respectable (but very mistaken) economist. Krugman is a dishonorable hack.
I have heard it said that at one time Krugman was an economist. The problem I see now is that he has an agenda which he promotes relentlessly. Not only that, but his smarmy commentary about people with whom he disagrees puts him in the category of, as you say, a hack.

This is unfortunate because it's important that people learn as much as they can about economics in order to make good judgements. If you just read Krugman, which I presume a lot of people do, you get a skewed view.

BTW, have you seen this?
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  #159  
Old 06-23-2011, 01:33 PM
operative operative is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

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I have heard it said that at one time Krugman was an economist. The problem I see now is that he has an agenda which he promotes relentlessly. Not only that, but his smarmy commentary about people with whom he disagrees puts him in the category of, as you say, a hack.

This is unfortunate because it's important that people learn as much as they can about economics in order to make good judgements. If you just read Krugman, which I presume a lot of people do, you get a skewed view.

BTW, have you seen this?
I haven't yet; I'll check it out.

Krugman has been particularly off his rocker as of late (which is saying something). He claimed that liberals take the time to understand conservatives but conservatives don't take the time to understand liberals. He then said that there wasn't a single conservative that he bothers to read, thus undermining his first point. As Bryan Caplan argued, a conservative or libertarian economist can more likely pass a Turing test than a liberal, particularly if that liberal is Paul Krugman.
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  #160  
Old 06-23-2011, 10:17 PM
Alexandrite Alexandrite is offline
 
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Default Re: Quality Control (Conn Carroll & Noah Kristula-Green)

I listened to my BHTV this week in Reverse order (newest stuff first, oldest stuff last).

I burst out laughing at this.

http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/369...3:56&out=44:16

OH WE WOULDN'T WOULD WE? NO SANE PEOPLE WOULD EVER DEBATE THAT?
http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/369...8:12&out=27:36

I think I'm going to go and tweet these so hard right now.
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