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  #1  
Old 07-14-2011, 04:52 PM
Bloggingheads Bloggingheads is offline
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Default An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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  #2  
Old 07-14-2011, 07:08 PM
popcorn_karate popcorn_karate is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/374...6:14&out=16:37

picking random numbers out of a hat to like or dislike is not really philosophy, Tim - more like ideology (and a crackpot one at that).
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  #3  
Old 07-15-2011, 12:57 AM
Starwatcher162536 Starwatcher162536 is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Tim remarks about how the unintended consequences of CAFE standards through various mechanisms may have been more environmentally* damaging then the environmental gains accrued by the adoption of the aforementioned standards. Without knowing the relative magnitude of beneficial and harmful consequences of CAFE standards I'm unable to say the likelihood of the negatives overwhelming the positives. This is unsurprising. Anything of import will have good and bad effects. I would welcome a discussion going into Tim's assertion in more detail.

All of this being said, I fail to see the relevance of CAFE standards when discussing the merits of cap & trade. It's like me bringing up the consequences of repealing Glass-Steagall when discussing the merits of GATT. His tailpipe argument also seems bizarre when one considers that electricity, transportation, & cement account for some 75%** of emissions and for practical technicalities have to be produced domestically. Nor is it easy to see how either a carbon tax or cap & trade schema could potentially shift consumption in a way that would increase greenhouse gas emissions.

Tim seemed like a giant Non sequitur to me on that section.

*Ethanol/CAFE standards raison d'etre has always come from the No foreign oil national security camps with environmentalism being just incidental, in my opinion.
**Roughly, I don't recall exact figures
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  #4  
Old 07-15-2011, 01:38 AM
Rathertired Rathertired is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

I'm going to try to not get too snarky here, but how many libertarian puppets for rightwing billionaires do we have to be subject to on Bloggingheads?

There was a period when we couldn't go a week without getting two or three libertarian flunkeys in the employ of the Koch brothers' Cato Institute. Now we have some crackpot who works for something called The Washington Examiner.

A three second Google search reveals The Washington Examiner to be a free newspaper put out by conservative billionaire Philip Anschutz.

Well, I guess we should be grateful for the variety!

Not just liberterian stooges for rightwing billionaires from Kansas who inherited their father's oil business (the Koch brothers, Cato), now we're also getting a libertarian stooge for a Colorado billionaire who inherited his father's oil businesses (Anschutz, The Washington Examiner)!

My, what range of thought on Bloggingheads! Puppets in the employ of rightwing Kansas oil billionaire heirs and now - now a puppet in the employ of a rightwing Colorado oil billionaire heir as well! Truly, the full spectrum of contemporary intellectual thought in the Western world!

Look, it's not that complicated. Bloggingheads perennials like Peter Suderman, Megan McArdle, Julian Sanchez, Nick Gillespie and Will Wilkinson represent an economic philosophy that's been brutally refuted by the financial collapse of the past decade. Their beloved Ayn Rand is ludicrous kitsch; their take on free will, juvenile and out of step with contemporary science (as well as 125 years of philosophy.) Their socially liberal, economically conservative, open borders, anti-regulation orientation is shared by a tiny minority of the American populace, but they make good lackays for the corporate interests and lunatic billionaires that fund them. That's why they have jobs, blogs, the opportunity to spout their silliness on this site.

Paul Krugman has a blog. John Cassidy of The New Yorker has a blog. Brad DeLong of Berkeley has a blog. These are real economists, genuinely well educated and intelligent people, much too intelligent to have ever taken 'Atlas Shrugged' seriously and much too accomplished to be in the employ of some risible Montgomery Burns figure. There are many, many more.

A serious effort should be made to lose the silly libertarian stooges who haunt this site and to get some grown-up economists - many with blogs - who aren't working for billionaire loons to come on and talk.

Last edited by Rathertired; 07-15-2011 at 11:19 PM..
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  #5  
Old 07-15-2011, 01:44 AM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rathertired View Post
I'm going to try to not get too snarky here, but how many libetertian puppets for rightwing billionaires do we have to be subject to on Bloggingheads?

There was a period where we couldn't go a week without getting two or three stooges in the employ of the Koch brother's Cato Institute. Now we have some crackpot who works for something called The Washington Examiner.

A three second Google search reveals The Washington Examimer to be a free newspaper put out by rightwing, conservative billionaire Philip Anschutz.

Well, I guess we should be grateful for the variety!

Not just liberterian stooges for rightwing billionaires from Texas who inherited their father's oil business (the Koch brothers, Cato), now we're also getting a libertarian stooge for a Colorado billionaire who inherited his father's oil businesses (Anschutz, Washington Examiner)!

My, what range of thought on Bloggingheads!

Puppets in the employ of rightwing Texas oil billionaire heirs and now a puppet in the employ of a rightwing Colorado oil billionaire heir as well! Truly, the full spectrum of contemporary intellectual thought in the Western world!

Look, it's not that complicated. Bloggingheads perennials like Peter Suderman, Megan McArdle, Julian Sanchez, Nick Gillespie and Will Wilkinson represent an economic philosophy that's been brutally refuted by the economic collapse of the past decade. Their beloved Ayn Rand is ludicrous kitsch; their take on free will, juvenile and out of step with contemporary science (as well as 125 years of philosophy.) Their socially liberal, economically conservative orientation represents a tiny minority of the American populace, but they make good stooges for the major money, corporate interests and lunatic billionaires that fund them. That's why they have jobs, blogs, the opportunities to spout their silliness on this site.

Paul Krugman has a blog. John Cassidy of 'The New Yorker' has a blog. Brad DeLong of Berkley has a blog. These are real economists, well educated and intelligent people, much too intelligent to have ever taken 'Atlas Shrugged' seriously and much too accomplished to be in the employ of some risible Montgomery Burns figure. There are many, many more.

A serious effort should be made to lose the silly libertarian stooges who haunt this site and to get some grown-up economists - many with blogs - who aren't working for billionaire loons to come on and talk.
You may be rather tired, but thanks nonetheless for that rant that surpassed mere snark. Helloooooo bhtv ... is anybody listening ...
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  #6  
Old 07-15-2011, 02:14 AM
Simon Willard Simon Willard is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Starwatcher162536 View Post
Tim remarks about how the unintended consequences of CAFE standards through various mechanisms may have been more environmentally* damaging then the environmental gains accrued by the adoption of the aforementioned standards. Without knowing the relative magnitude of beneficial and harmful consequences of CAFE standards I'm unable to say the likelihood of the negatives overwhelming the positives. This is unsurprising. Anything of import will have good and bad effects. I would welcome a discussion going into Tim's assertion in more detail.

All of this being said, I fail to see the relevance of CAFE standards when discussing the merits of cap & trade. It's like me bringing up the consequences of repealing Glass-Steagall when discussing the merits of GATT. His tailpipe argument also seems bizarre when one considers that electricity, transportation, & cement account for some 75%** of emissions and for practical technicalities have to be produced domestically. Nor is it easy to see how either a carbon tax or cap & trade schema could potentially shift consumption in a way that would increase greenhouse gas emissions.

Tim seemed like a giant Non sequitur to me on that section.
Tim's comments had the ring of truth for me. Not in the details, since I think he was making broad-brush analogies. The truth is that these things are so often more complex than anyone can understand. Things like cap & trade make us feel good that we have taken action against a problem, while we have very little understanding of the actual effect.

You can fault Tim's argument for not making all the logical connections, but the real point is that the connections are not understandable. Not to lawmakers, anyway.

When it comes to the subject of energy consumption, it cannot be over-emphasized how important it is for people to consume energy. You can change the rules, but people will consume energy in different ways. It's a hopeless situation, unless you convince yourself that we can adapt to a warmer planet, or we make a stunning advance in technology like practical fusion power.

Last edited by Simon Willard; 07-15-2011 at 02:21 AM..
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  #7  
Old 07-15-2011, 03:36 AM
sugarkang sugarkang is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon Willard View Post
Tim's comments had the ring of truth for me. Not in the details, since I think he was making broad-brush analogies. The truth is that these things are so often more complex than anyone can understand. Things like cap & trade make us feel good that we have taken action against a problem, while we have very little understanding of the actual effect.
The hubris of rationality rears its ugly head once again. The regulatory arbitrage that occurs with environmental law (aluminum) was a good case for understanding.

Life must be bliss for those willfully ignorant of basic economics.
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  #8  
Old 07-15-2011, 08:32 AM
Ocean Ocean is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by graz View Post
You may be rather tired, but thanks nonetheless for that rant that surpassed mere snark. Helloooooo bhtv ... is anybody listening ...
Second that with applause and standing ovation!

(I'm trying hyperbole for this weekend).
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  #9  
Old 07-15-2011, 08:44 AM
Hume's Bastard Hume's Bastard is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rathertired View Post
I'm going to try to not get too snarky here, but how many libertarian puppets for rightwing billionaires do we have to be subject to on Bloggingheads?

There was a period when we couldn't go a week without getting two or three libertarian flunkeys in the employ of the Koch brothers' Cato Institute. Now we have some crackpot who works for something called The Washington Examiner.

A three second Google search reveals The Washington Examiner to be a free newspaper put out by rightwing, conservative billionaire Philip Anschutz.

Well, I guess we should be grateful for the variety!

Not just liberterian stooges for rightwing billionaires from Texas who inherited their father's oil business (the Koch brothers, Cato), now we're also getting a libertarian stooge for a Colorado billionaire who inherited his father's oil businesses (Anschutz, The Washington Examiner)!

My, what range of thought on Bloggingheads! Puppets in the employ of rightwing Texas oil billionaire heirs and now - now a puppet in the employ of a rightwing Colorado oil billionaire heir as well! Truly, the full spectrum of contemporary intellectual thought in the Western world!

Look, it's not that complicated. Bloggingheads perennials like Peter Suderman, Megan McArdle, Julian Sanchez, Nick Gillespie and Will Wilkinson represent an economic philosophy that's been brutally refuted by the financial collapse of the past decade. Their beloved Ayn Rand is ludicrous kitsch; their take on free will, juvenile and out of step with contemporary science (as well as 125 years of philosophy.) Their socially liberal, economically conservative, open borders, anti-regulation orientation is shared by a tiny minority of the American populace, but they make good lackays for the major money, corporate interests and lunatic billionaires that fund them. That's why they have jobs, blogs, the opportunity to spout their silliness on this site.

Paul Krugman has a blog. John Cassidy of The New Yorker has a blog. Brad DeLong of Berkeley has a blog. These are real economists, genuinely well educated and intelligent people, much too intelligent to have ever taken 'Atlas Shrugged' seriously and much too accomplished to be in the employ of some risible Montgomery Burns figure. There are many, many more.

A serious effort should be made to lose the silly libertarian stooges who haunt this site and to get some grown-up economists - many with blogs - who aren't working for billionaire loons to come on and talk.
Welcome to bhtv! Please do a diavlog - or a monovlog, now that Bob is lowering the standards. Watch out - there's a Koch-funded lecture coming your way. You'll be dreaming of the days when you would be lucky if there were a sycophant in the second box who still wouldn't challenge or question, but who would at least break up the monotony.

You forgot to mention the panoply of podcasts around, too. I'm beginning to think good people won't do diavlogs because it's like running a gauntlet of shills, exactly the human detritus many academics and journalists want to avoid becoming or knowing. Either that, they're just cowards who don't want to leave any unfiltered, unedited, and permitted verbiage on record. And, Bob, podcasters have audiences! And, blogs! And, jobs! The more I think about that abortion of a Commenter Klatsch, I just want to kiss Bob on the lips, to awaken whatever is left of his conscience. R.I.P, bhtv!

A kind word for Wilkinson, though. He does good work for The Economist.

Last edited by Hume's Bastard; 07-15-2011 at 09:22 AM..
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  #10  
Old 07-15-2011, 09:37 AM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hume's Bastard View Post
Welcome to bhtv! Please do a diavlog - or a monovlog, now that Bob is lowering the standards. Watch out - there's a Koch-funded lecture coming your way. You'll be dreaming of the days when you would be lucky if there were a sycophant in the second box who still wouldn't challenge or question, but who would at least break up the monotony.

You forgot to mention the panoply of podcasts around, too. I'm beginning to think good people won't do diavlogs because it's like running a gauntlet of shills, exactly the human detritus many academics and journalists want to avoid becoming or knowing. Either that, they're just cowards who don't want to leave any unfiltered, unedited, and permitted verbiage on record. And, Bob, podcasters have audiences! And, blogs! And, jobs! The more I think about that abortion of a Commenter Klatsch, I just want to kiss Bob on the lips, to awaken whatever is left of his conscience. R.I.P, bhtv!

A kind word for Wilkinson, though. He does good work for The Economist.
Passionate as always, Joseph. They might just succeed in spite of themselves -- stay tuned for tech-heads. Remaining in the "A's", I'll add abomination to your assessment of the "klatch". I know that your hyperbole wasn't intended to suggest actually striking Bob (a banning might ensue). But it was a slap in our collective listening (watching) faces for them to act so clueless and present such a poorly produced "show". Maybe that's their design after all -- bhtv: propaganda, poor production and foundation welfare. They must have decided to forego sustained effort at booking some time ago. Also, nice tell on their part to act as if it was the first time any thoughts or suggestions for improvement were offered in the forum.

Hey, I wouldn't blame them if they ignored us generally, except for the part where they continue to solicit us to spread the product like meme. The other option is to actually offer a great product. Genius, I know.

Last edited by graz; 07-15-2011 at 10:00 AM..
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  #11  
Old 07-15-2011, 09:42 AM
Hume's Bastard Hume's Bastard is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by graz View Post
Passionate as always, Joseph....I know that your hyperbole wasn't intended to suggest actually striking Bob (a banning might ensue).
That was an unedited moment. I've changed the offense to something even more incendiary. But, so what? Getting banned might become a badge of honor now.
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  #12  
Old 07-15-2011, 10:02 AM
harkin harkin is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rathertired View Post
Paul Krugman has a blog. John Cassidy of The New Yorker has a blog. Brad DeLong of Berkeley has a blog. These are real economists, genuinely well educated and intelligent people, much too intelligent to have ever taken 'Atlas Shrugged' seriously and much too accomplished to be in the employ of some risible Montgomery Burns figure. There are many, many more.

A serious effort should be made to lose the silly libertarian stooges who haunt this site and to get some grown-up economists - many with blogs - who aren't working for billionaire loons to come on and talk.
Once again the pleas for censorship come from the left. How amusing is it that someone complaining about stooges nominates three that rival Moe, Larry and Curly?

Save your blog-diving and instead just keep chanting "government isn't spending enough, we need more union membership, government isn't spending enough, we need more union membership". You can add "people who make $250k/year have no business owning a private jet" but nobody listens to that hogwash.

The current economic situation (especially in the democratic-dominated states and their party/union-generated financial disasters) refutes everything you say but keep chanting anyways, they are depending on people like you.

Ignore the reality that even (some) dems are facing up to in NJ, OH and MN, move along, nothing to see here.....
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  #13  
Old 07-15-2011, 11:07 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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Originally Posted by harkin View Post
Once again the pleas for censorship come from the left. How amusing is it that someone complaining about stooges nominates three that rival Moe, Larry and Curly?
I really do wonder why this is. I mean, no one is being forced to watch anything. So instead of watching Tim Carney from the Washington Examiner, one could perhaps go and re-read Krugman posts.

Are the people who are complaining offended that this type of information (bullshit in their estimation) is out there? Don't they understand that at some level the truth will eventually win out and that people should be allowed to sift through to find out what the truth is. I just don't understand the panic.
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Last edited by badhatharry; 07-15-2011 at 11:31 AM..
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  #14  
Old 07-15-2011, 11:09 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon Willard View Post
When it comes to the subject of energy consumption, it cannot be over-emphasized how important it is for people to consume energy. You can change the rules, but people will consume energy in different ways. It's a hopeless situation, unless you convince yourself that we can adapt to a warmer planet, or we make a stunning advance in technology like practical fusion power.
Something will emerge. It always does or not...maybe we've finally hit the wall.
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  #15  
Old 07-15-2011, 12:35 PM
Rathertired Rathertired is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Oh, I'm not a leftist. Not at all. I'm just anti-Rand.

And while I find titles like "senior political columnist at the Washington Examiner" to be rather sweet and endearing (it's a free newspaper put out by a conservative billionaire oil heir. Its "senior political columnist" is thus, lo and behold, opposed to income taxes. How droll. Who could've seen that coming? A free market zealot, he - like the majority of Bloggingheads libertarians - chooses to work under a system of feudal privilege for a company that will never turn a profit), I, nonetheless, have to despair for a world where people who take Ayn Rand seriously are allowed to further stir up the yahoos.

Especially after the financial crash of the past few years has left their ideology in such disgrace.

Frankly, it's bad enough you people have talk radio.

And Fox News.

The very last thing you need is Ayn Rand.
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  #16  
Old 07-15-2011, 01:57 PM
TwinSwords TwinSwords is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rathertired View Post
I'm going to try to not get too snarky here, but how many libertarian puppets for rightwing billionaires do we have to be subject to on Bloggingheads?

There was a period when we couldn't go a week without getting two or three libertarian flunkeys in the employ of the Koch brothers' Cato Institute. Now we have some crackpot who works for something called The Washington Examiner.

A three second Google search reveals The Washington Examiner to be a free newspaper put out by conservative billionaire Philip Anschutz.

Well, I guess we should be grateful for the variety!

Not just liberterian stooges for rightwing billionaires from Texas who inherited their father's oil business (the Koch brothers, Cato), now we're also getting a libertarian stooge for a Colorado billionaire who inherited his father's oil businesses (Anschutz, The Washington Examiner)!

My, what range of thought on Bloggingheads! Puppets in the employ of rightwing Texas oil billionaire heirs and now - now a puppet in the employ of a rightwing Colorado oil billionaire heir as well! Truly, the full spectrum of contemporary intellectual thought in the Western world!

Look, it's not that complicated. Bloggingheads perennials like Peter Suderman, Megan McArdle, Julian Sanchez, Nick Gillespie and Will Wilkinson represent an economic philosophy that's been brutally refuted by the financial collapse of the past decade. Their beloved Ayn Rand is ludicrous kitsch; their take on free will, juvenile and out of step with contemporary science (as well as 125 years of philosophy.) Their socially liberal, economically conservative, open borders, anti-regulation orientation is shared by a tiny minority of the American populace, but they make good lackays for the major money, corporate interests and lunatic billionaires that fund them. That's why they have jobs, blogs, the opportunity to spout their silliness on this site.

Paul Krugman has a blog. John Cassidy of The New Yorker has a blog. Brad DeLong of Berkeley has a blog. These are real economists, genuinely well educated and intelligent people, much too intelligent to have ever taken 'Atlas Shrugged' seriously and much too accomplished to be in the employ of some risible Montgomery Burns figure. There are many, many more.

A serious effort should be made to lose the silly libertarian stooges who haunt this site and to get some grown-up economists - many with blogs - who aren't working for billionaire loons to come on and talk.
Five star comment.
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  #17  
Old 07-15-2011, 02:09 PM
DWAnderson DWAnderson is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

I actually looked at the comments expecting some substantive discussion of the points in the Diavlog here...

So here goes, I suspect the reason that Tim doesn't want an income tax (and presumably prefers a consumption tax) is that the income tax skews consumption/investment decisions away from what they would be absent taxes, resulting in less happiness for everyone.

This is also the reason why in an ideal world, you would tax capital gains at 0%, because it is mathematically equivalent to exempting investment (i.e. non-consumption expenditures) from the income tax. In other words it would be an attempt to bring the current income tax system closer to a consumption tax.

The problem with working with the income tax in this way is that it tends to breed a bunch of inefficient attempts to game the system, e.g. by turning ordinary income into capital gains that are taxed at a lower rate.

Pure consumption taxes are not without their issues, but they don't start with the disadvantage of trying tax consumption by taxing a income as a proxy for consumption.

Unfortunately, Mark appears unaware of all of this when he blithely asserts that capital gains are taxed at a different rate that ordinary income because the Republican Party is the party of capital. Please.
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  #18  
Old 07-15-2011, 02:48 PM
AemJeff AemJeff is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rathertired View Post
Oh, I'm not a leftist. Not at all. I'm just anti-Rand.

And while I find titles like "senior political columnist at the Washington Examiner" to be rather sweet and endearing (it's a free newspaper put out by a conservative billionaire oil heir. Its "senior political columnist" is thus, lo and behold, opposed to income taxes. How droll. Who could've seen that coming? A free market zealot, he - like the majority of Bloggingheads libertarians - chooses to work under a system of feudal privilege for a company that will never turn a profit), I, nonetheless, have to despair for a world where people who take Ayn Rand seriously are allowed to further stir up the yahoos.

Especially after the financial crash of the past few years has left their ideology in such disgrace.

Frankly, it's bad enough you people have talk radio.

And Fox News.

The very last thing you need is Ayn Rand.
Don't mind harkin, he's limited to a single message - some variation on the following: "Harumph! Everybody who disagrees with me is wrong, immoral and stupid!. And has bad breath."
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Last edited by AemJeff; 07-15-2011 at 11:53 PM.. Reason: phone typing not a strong suit
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  #19  
Old 07-15-2011, 03:09 PM
stephanie stephanie is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by AemJeff View Post
Don't mind harkin, he's limited to a single message - some variation on the following: "Harumph! Everybody who disagrees me wrong, immoral and stupid!. And has bad breath."
Heh.
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  #20  
Old 07-15-2011, 08:31 PM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rathertired View Post
Especially after the financial crash of the past few years has left their ideology in such disgrace.
Not sure how the financial crash has much to do with libertarian ideology since it was government involvement in the market and lax regulation enforcement (also on the part of the government) that was a big part of the mayhem that ensued. Please note that I'm not implying there weren't other factors.
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Last edited by badhatharry; 07-15-2011 at 08:51 PM..
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  #21  
Old 07-15-2011, 08:55 PM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by badhatharry View Post
Not sure how the financial crash has much to do with libertarian ideology since it was government involvement in the market that was a big part of the mayhem that ensued.
The parts of this claim that are true are irrelevant, and the parts that are relevant aren't true. For one, there's no such thing as a free market financial system. One way or the other, Government has to set monetary policy and issue currency, and last I checked things like the FDIC are correctly taken for granted as a good thing. So yes, government was deeply involved in what happened, but only because government is intimately involved in everything that happens in high finance.

But then there's also the implied claim that either Fannie & Freddy, a bill passed in the Carter Administration, or both forced the free market to foolishness that it otherwise wouldn't have engaged in. But in fact conservative claims about the importance of Fanny & Freddy to the whole debacle are nonsense. Fanny and Freddie were actually dramatically reducing their involvement in subprime mortgages from 2002 until 2005, i.e. when the bubble was inflating, and didn't securitize most of the problem mortgages. This is an nonsense narrative that exists because there is a political and ideological need for the defenders of the Wall Street plutocracy needed something, anything, to say in their defense. Now, I ordinarily would put more caveats around that assignation of motives, but in this case there's a jackass on the financial crisis commission that went out and gave the game away:

Quote:
…on November 3, 2010, the day after the mid-term congressional elections in
which Republicans took control of the House, Republican Commissioner Peter Wallison emailed Republican Commissioner Douglas Holtz-Eakin: “It’s very important, I think, that what we say in our separate statements not undermine the ability of the new House GOP to modify or repeal Dodd-Frank.”
On the one hand, I respect the Mitch McConnell-esque levels of honesty. But really, if you're going to pull a stunt like this you should take a cue from Syndrome and refrain from monologuing about it.
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  #22  
Old 07-15-2011, 10:14 PM
chiwhisoxx chiwhisoxx is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

you're sort of dancing around an obvious and what I thought was somewhat uncontroversial point. the only reason fannie and freddie were able to supply home mortages at such a ridiculously low interest rate was because the federal government was implicitly backing them. the federal government did *not* have to do that. whether or not fannie and freddie were giving out large volumes of subprime mortages in the few years right before the financial crisis is only part of the story. patterns of behavior and precedents matter, and fannie and freddie were certainly way out in front on this one. i'm not going to intervene in the "the financial crisis was ___'s fault!" because the story is so enormous it's impossible. you can end up like harry, sounding somewhat naive by trying to explain everything away with no gray areas. or you can sound somewhat dishonest like yourself, leaving out parts of the story that don't fit a narrative. it doesn't mean harry's naive or that you're dishonest, it's just an impossible task. it's not about the actual importance of fannie or freddie. to some, it's just a . but to brooks, at least how I read it, the point wasn't fingering someone for the financial crisis. it was a sad tale about how washington works; insider tales of special interest handouts and a tangled web of semi-corruption. I don't typically spring to the defense of david brooks, but I thought it was actually a terrific column, and I think you missed the point.
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:19 PM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Maybe you should read my post again because a lot of the things you are responding with are irrelevant...like this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
last I checked things like the FDIC are correctly taken for granted as a good thing. So yes, government was deeply involved in what happened, but only because government is intimately involved in everything that happens in high finance.
Oh yeah, the FDIC, OTS and SEC are great when they actually do their jobs and aren't in bed with the folks they are supposed to be regulating. Love 'em to bits.

Quote:
But then there's also the implied claim that either Fannie & Freddy, a bill passed in the Carter Administration, or both forced the free market to foolishness that it otherwise wouldn't have engaged in.
I never said the markets were forced into anything, it's called incentive. It's when people who like to make money see that there's a way to make a lot of it. But there certainly was a mandate to reduce the lending standards which was a result of the Community Re Investment Act..

I don't see that either of your articles refutes what I said except that Drum seems to want to pin most of the blame on Wall Street.

And as far as your 'jackass'...what the hell were Frank and Dodd doing, first heading up the committee to write the financial reform bill (because they were both so heavily involved in the scandal) and second, writing the bill before the findings of the Financial Crisis Commission were completed? The whole thing was a sham from the get-go.

they're all assholes.
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:29 PM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx View Post
you're sort of dancing around an obvious and what I thought was somewhat uncontroversial point. the only reason fannie and freddie were able to supply home mortages at such a ridiculously low interest rate was because the federal government was implicitly backing them. the federal government did *not* have to do that. whether or not fannie and freddie were giving out large volumes of subprime mortages in the few years right before the financial crisis is only part of the story. patterns of behavior and precedents matter, and fannie and freddie were certainly way out in front on this one. I'm not going to intervene in the "the financial crisis was ___'s fault!" because the story is so enormous it's impossible. you can end up like harry, sounding somewhat naive by trying to explain everything away with no gray areas. or you can sound somewhat dishonest like yourself, leaving out parts of the story that don't fit a narrative. it doesn't mean harry's naive or that you're dishonest, it's just an impossible task. it's not about the actual importance of fannie or freddie. to some, it's just a . but to brooks, at least how I read it, the point wasn't fingering someone for the financial crisis. it was a sad tale about how washington works; insider tales of special interest handouts and a tangled web of semi-corruption. I don't typically spring to the defense of david brooks, but I thought it was actually a terrific column, and I think you missed the point.
If we're having an argument about whether or not Fannie and Freddie should have existed in that form or behaved as they did before the crisis, I'm not going to disagree with you. But you're being naive if you don't recognize that they are trotted out in a deliberate and cynical way in order to muddy the waters on the cause of the crisis. Sure, the details of securitization and the behavior of the big banks is very complicated, but the basic story isn't. There was a speculative bubble in real estate, as there have been in all sorts of other markets in the past. it grew on excessive leverage, irrational expectations on the part of some investors, and cynical or illegal behavior on the part of others. Neither the Fed nor Congress did anything about it or even admitted the existence of a problem until it was too late, and then the taxpayer and the unemployed wound up footing the bill.

The reason I harp on this "it was all Fannie and Freddie" explanation is that I think it's being used to insulate people's precious ideology from reality, not to mention insulating the bankers from policy changes that might keep them from getting rich off of another bubble. We have to get past this nonsense so that we can agree upon the obvious truth: sometimes markets fail, and so we have to take steps to protect ourselves from the next such episode.
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:30 PM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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Originally Posted by badhatharry View Post
Oh yeah, the FDIC, OTS and SEC are great when they actually do their jobs and aren't in bed with the folks they are supposed to be regulating. Love 'em to bits.
You don't know what the FDIC does, do you?
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  #26  
Old 07-15-2011, 10:34 PM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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you can end up like harry, sounding somewhat naive by trying to explain everything away with no gray areas.
I never said there are no gray areas, dearie. I've done a lot of reading about this subject and I am under no illusion that anything about it is simple or that it can't happen again.
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:38 PM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
You don't know what the FDIC does, do you?
Cool! a pop quiz! Well, yes I do. It insures deposits, hence the name. Do you know what the SEC and the OTS do???

PS. In case you're wondering why I included the FDIC with the SEC and OTS; From the horses mouth: At least someone tells the truth.

Quote:
The heads of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. said that shortcomings in their agencies, coupled with flaws in the larger regulatory system, contributed to the period of great boom and even greater bust.
Quote:
"Not only did market discipline fail to prevent the excesses of the last few years, but the regulatory system also failed in its responsibilities," FDIC Chairman Sheila C. Bair said in written testimony to members of the bipartisan Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, which is investigating the causes of the financial meltdown. "Record profitability within the financial services industry also served to shield it from some forms of regulatory second-guessing."
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  #28  
Old 07-15-2011, 10:42 PM
chiwhisoxx chiwhisoxx is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
If we're having an argument about whether or not Fannie and Freddie should have existed in that form or behaved as they did before the crisis, I'm not going to disagree with you. But you're being naive if you don't recognize that they are trotted out in a deliberate and cynical way in order to muddy the waters on the cause of the crisis. Sure, the details of securitization and the behavior of the big banks is very complicated, but the basic story isn't. There was a speculative bubble in real estate, as there have been in all sorts of other markets in the past. it grew on excessive leverage, irrational expectations on the part of some investors, and cynical or illegal behavior on the part of others. Neither the Fed nor Congress did anything about it or even admitted the existence of a problem until it was too late, and then the taxpayer and the unemployed wound up footing the bill.

The reason I harp on this "it was all Fannie and Freddie" explanation is that I think it's being used to insulate people's precious ideology from reality, not to mention insulating the bankers from policy changes that might keep them from getting rich off of another bubble. We have to get past this nonsense so that we can agree upon the obvious truth: sometimes markets fail, and so we have to take steps to protect ourselves from the next such episode.
eh. sure, for the most part. I'm pretty skeptical that we can prevent the next bubble, even if we do everything paul krugman wants us to do. that's not a reason not to try, but still. I will say, claiming "no one" did anything about it isn't entirely true. in a rare moment of lucidity, he did call for more oversight of fannie and freddie, over the objections of blowhards like chris dodd. not making a partisan point (i'm sure some dems wanted more oversight of fannie, mccain just springs to mind) but there were some people who wanted to take a more prudent course.
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  #29  
Old 07-15-2011, 11:06 PM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
The reason I harp on this "it was all Fannie and Freddie" explanation is that I think it's being used to insulate people's precious ideology from reality, not to mention insulating the bankers from policy changes that might keep them from getting rich off of another bubble. We have to get past this nonsense so that we can agree upon the obvious truth: sometimes markets fail, and so we have to take steps to protect ourselves from the next such episode.
Oh good we have another mind reader in the forum. I'm glad that you are saving the world from the insulation of people's ideology. No one (and I've read a lot of stuff about this) says it was all Fannie and Freddie.

And Jesus Christ, no one ever says that markets don't sometimes fail or rather, that people fail who are invested in markets. The issue is to find the best ways for the markets to operate most efficiently.Telling lenders that they need to let unqualified buyers borrow money isn't one of them.

And while I'm at it and because I'm on a roll, if you are so interested in removing the insulation around people's ideology why don't you take a shot at statements like this? "Look, it's not that complicated. Bloggingheads perennials like Peter Suderman, Megan McArdle, Julian Sanchez, Nick Gillespie and Will Wilkinson represent an economic philosophy that's been brutally refuted by the financial collapse of the past decade.'"
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  #30  
Old 07-15-2011, 11:52 PM
JulianSanchez JulianSanchez is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Dude, what? I don't think any of the people you mentioned take Ayn Rand particularly seriously, I have no reason to think any of them
believe in free will (I certainly don't), and as far as I'm aware Megan is the only one who writes or talks mainly about economic policy. So does this rant have anything to do with anything, or was this just a convenient place to unload another generic "Libertarians, Baaaaaaad!" with local names plugged in?
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  #31  
Old 07-15-2011, 11:59 PM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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Dude, what? I don't think any of the people you mentioned take Ayn Rand particularly seriously, I have no reason to think any of them
believe in free will (I certainly don't), and as far as I'm aware Megan is the only one who writes or talks mainly about economic policy. So does this rant have anything to do with anything, or was this just a convenient place to unload another generic "Libertarians, Baaaaaaad!" with local names plugged in?
I think your paymasters would expect a better defense.
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Old 07-15-2011, 11:59 PM
rfrobison rfrobison is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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I'm going to try to not get too snarky here, but how many libertarian puppets for rightwing billionaires do we have to be subject to on Bloggingheads?

There was a period when we couldn't go a week without getting two or three libertarian flunkeys in the employ of the Koch brothers' Cato Institute. Now we have some crackpot who works for something called The Washington Examiner.

A three second Google search reveals The Washington Examiner to be a free newspaper put out by conservative billionaire Philip Anschutz.

Well, I guess we should be grateful for the variety!

Not just liberterian stooges for rightwing billionaires from Kansas who inherited their father's oil business (the Koch brothers, Cato), now we're also getting a libertarian stooge for a Colorado billionaire who inherited his father's oil businesses (Anschutz, The Washington Examiner)!

My, what range of thought on Bloggingheads! Puppets in the employ of rightwing Kansas oil billionaire heirs and now - now a puppet in the employ of a rightwing Colorado oil billionaire heir as well! Truly, the full spectrum of contemporary intellectual thought in the Western world!

Look, it's not that complicated. Bloggingheads perennials like Peter Suderman, Megan McArdle, Julian Sanchez, Nick Gillespie and Will Wilkinson represent an economic philosophy that's been brutally refuted by the financial collapse of the past decade. Their beloved Ayn Rand is ludicrous kitsch; their take on free will, juvenile and out of step with contemporary science (as well as 125 years of philosophy.) Their socially liberal, economically conservative, open borders, anti-regulation orientation is shared by a tiny minority of the American populace, but they make good lackays for the corporate interests and lunatic billionaires that fund them. That's why they have jobs, blogs, the opportunity to spout their silliness on this site.

Paul Krugman has a blog. John Cassidy of The New Yorker has a blog. Brad DeLong of Berkeley has a blog. These are real economists, genuinely well educated and intelligent people, much too intelligent to have ever taken 'Atlas Shrugged' seriously and much too accomplished to be in the employ of some risible Montgomery Burns figure. There are many, many more.

A serious effort should be made to lose the silly libertarian stooges who haunt this site and to get some grown-up economists - many with blogs - who aren't working for billionaire loons to come on and talk.
While I share your desire for more serious economics by serious economists, I'm nevertheless a bit mystified by the whinging about libertarian stooges of billionaires, etc.

As BHH points out, nobody's putting a gun to your head and forcing you to watch this stuff. (At least I assume so. If you are being held at gunpoint, send me a private message and I'll alert the cops.)

We all have people we'd like to see on the site. I see you've mentioned a few. Good for you. But do keep in mind that academics have day jobs and going on Bhtv is not likely to help people get tenure or a Nobel Prize or like that.

On the other hand, pundits get paid to engage in punditry. Being here raises their profile (ever so slightly, I suspect, but never mind that), so they have an incentive to come on that is probably larger than people like Krugman, who, once upon a time, rumor has it, was a serious economist. He has a big platform at the NYT and is unlikely to be chomping at the bit to come on. (No offense to Mr. Wright and crew.)

You might try reading a book or going for a swim or starting up your own political discussion site if this place isn't doing it for you. Just a tip.
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  #33  
Old 07-16-2011, 12:09 AM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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Originally Posted by rfrobison View Post
While I share your desire for more serious economics by serious economists, I'm nevertheless a bit mystified by the whinging about libertarian stooges of billionaires, etc.
Follow the money.

Quote:
You might try reading a book or going for a swim or starting up your own political discussion site if this place isn't doing it for you. Just a tip.
And you might allow dissent and critique without attempting to deflect and minimize reality.
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  #34  
Old 07-16-2011, 12:19 AM
rfrobison rfrobison is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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Originally Posted by graz View Post
Follow the money.


And you might allow dissent and critique without attempting to deflect and minimize reality.
I'm not sure what "reality" it is I'm trying to deflect, Graz. The only reality I can gather is that a bunch of lefty habitués of this place don't like libertarians. Fine. Whinge away. If it feels good baby, do it! You seem to have a high estimate of my influence if you think I'm capable of stifling critique or dissent. I can't even stifle my cats' dissent.

Following the money is of little, er, value. I could equally point to George Soros, Arianna Huffington, and a legion of rich lefties who try to shape the agenda. That's their right. Or so I was told in my elementary school civics class.

But to attack the integrity of the people who have taken the trouble to create this space just because you don't share the ideological affiliations of some of the people who appear on it is childish in the extreme.
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  #35  
Old 07-16-2011, 12:29 AM
Ocean Ocean is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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Originally Posted by rfrobison View Post
But to attack the integrity of the people who have taken the trouble to create this space just because you don't share the ideological affiliations of some of the people who appear on it is childish in the extreme.
I think you're exaggerating. "Attack" is too strong a word.

Some of us are tired of an excessive (in our opinion) number of libertarians showing up day after day. Some of them deserve much more respect than others. Actually, and pardon if I forget someone else who is reasonable, Brink, Julian and Will are among the best of that bunch, IMHO. The others, are plainly tiring.

Of course, if Bob wants to go the libertarian way, he has all the right to do it. Simply some of the commenters will get turned off and leave, and others more in tune with libertarianism will come to join the already existing sympathizers.
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Old 07-16-2011, 12:33 AM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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I'm not sure what "reality" it is I'm trying to deflect, Graz. The only reality I can gather is that a bunch of lefty habitués of this place don't like libertarians. Fine. Whinge away. If it feels good baby, do it! You seem to have a high estimate of my influence if you think I'm capable of stifling critique or dissent. I can't even stifle my cats' dissent.

Following the money is of little, er, value. I could equally point to George Soros, Ariana Huffington, and a legion of rich lefties who try to shape the agenda. That's their right. Or so I was told in my elementary school civics class.

But to attack the integrity of the people who have taken the trouble to create this space just because you don't share the ideological affiliations of some of the people who appear on it is childish in the extreme.
To each his own. You toady, I call it as I see it.

The site has been overrun with libertarians. Bemoaning that in the forum isn't childish in the least. It's the only recourse available. And if you don't care for it, well, there's always swimming.
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Old 07-16-2011, 12:35 AM
AemJeff AemJeff is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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Originally Posted by rfrobison View Post
While I share your desire for more serious economics by serious economists, I'm nevertheless a bit mystified by the whinging about libertarian stooges of billionaires, etc.

As BHH points out, nobody's putting a gun to your head and forcing you to watch this stuff. (At least I assume so. If you are being held at gunpoint, send me a private message and I'll alert the cops.)

We all have people we'd like to see on the site. I see you've mentioned a few. Good for you. But do keep in mind that academics have day jobs and going on Bhtv is not likely to help people get tenure or a Nobel Prize or like that.

On the other hand, pundits get paid to engage in punditry. Being here raises their profile (ever so slightly, I suspect, but never mind that), so they have an incentive to come on that is probably larger than people like Krugman, who, once upon a time, rumor has it, was a serious economist. He has a big platform at the NYT and is unlikely to be chomping at the bit to come on. (No offense to Mr. Wright and crew.)

You might try reading a book or going for a swim or starting up your own political discussion site if this place isn't doing it for you. Just a tip.
Jeeze, Rob, it's not about being forced to watch something; it's about a huge amount of time and energy being devoted to a particular, relatively fringey point of view. I like Will Wilkinson, I like Julian Sanchez, I'm admittedly deeply weary of "Jane Galt." I'd like to watch Julian or Will interview a Teaper as a relatively friendly skeptic. But, I'd love to witness either or both of them argue with a competent left-wing economist or two. I might not even miss either of them if a couple of lefties managed to have a conversation here that didn't bother with a single reference to Friedrich Hayek even once.
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  #38  
Old 07-16-2011, 12:36 AM
rfrobison rfrobison is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ocean View Post
I think you're exaggerating. "Attack" is too strong a word.

Some of us are tired of an excessive (in our opinion) number of libertarians showing up day after day. Some of them deserve much more respect than others. Actually, and pardon if I forget someone else who is reasonable, Brink, Julian and Will are among the best of that bunch, IMHO. The others, are plainly tiring.

Of course, if Bob wants to go the libertarian way, he has all the right to do it. Simply some of the commenters will get turned off and leave, and others more in tune with libertarianism will come to join the already existing sympathizers.
I don't disagree with the substance of what you're saying, except on this minor (?) point: When Graz or Tired or others start talking about Julian Sanchez being in someone's pay, as Graz did here:
Quote:
Originally Posted by graz View Post
I think your paymasters would expect a better defense.
, that's a pretty serious charge.

In my line of work that would get you called to the carpet by the managing editor for a dressing down about the dangers of libel. But this is the Internet, so I guess it's OK to make any kind of slam you want against people just 'cause you don't like where they stand on the ideological spectrum.

Ah, progress.
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Old 07-16-2011, 12:37 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Originally Posted by JulianSanchez View Post
Dude, what? I don't think any of the people you mentioned take Ayn Rand particularly seriously, I have no reason to think any of them
believe in free will (I certainly don't), and as far as I'm aware Megan is the only one who writes or talks mainly about economic policy. So does this rant have anything to do with anything, or was this just a convenient place to unload another generic "Libertarians, Baaaaaaad!" with local names plugged in?
They have no idea what libertarian thinking entails or the differences which the various proponents have with each other. Libertarians have become the new whipping boy of the left. But at least people are noticing it and bad publicity is better than none at all.
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Old 07-16-2011, 12:38 AM
AemJeff AemJeff is offline
 
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Default Re: An Occasion of Sin (Mark Schmitt & Tim Carney)

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I think you're exaggerating. "Attack" is too strong a word.

Some of us are tired of an excessive (in our opinion) number of libertarians showing up day after day. Some of them deserve much more respect than others. Actually, and pardon if I forget someone else who is reasonable, Brink, Julian and Will are among the best of that bunch, IMHO. The others, are plainly tiring.

Of course, if Bob wants to go the libertarian way, he has all the right to do it. Simply some of the commenters will get turned off and leave, and others more in tune with libertarianism will come to join the already existing sympathizers.
Yeah, Brink too. I should have mentioned him a minute ago!
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