Slow Growing

Economic expansion woes

dollarceoln / Foter.com / CC BY-NCIs slow economic growth the new normal? Not necessarily, according to an October policy analysis from the Cato Institute, but growth has become more difficult.

Cato Senior Fellow Brink Lindsey points to four components of economic growth: labor participation, labor quality, capital investments, and "total-factor productivity," a measure of output for each unit of work. Historically, the fluctuation of these measures has been balanced: When some measures went down, others went up.

But recently all the components of growth have slowed simultaneously. People have been dropping out of the work force since 2000. Educational attainment levels are stunted by high-school graduation levels lower than they were four decades ago. Physical capital investments have slowed, and total factor productivity growth has declined since the 1990s.

Lindsey argues that slow growth in each of these areas is likely to continue, resulting in continued slow economic growth, if present policies continue. Today's public policy infrastructure, he writes, is "rife with barriers to entrepreneurship, competition, innovation, and growth," not to mention subsidies that tilt the playing field in favor of incumbents, complicated and poorly designed tax rules, and legal mechanisms that obscure price signals. Lindsey argues that changing these policies may be the easiest way to give the economy a boost.

Alternatively, slower economic growth might just be what more Americans prefer. "A slowing economic growth rate is not a problem," Lindsey writes, "to the extent it reflects shifting individual preferences."

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  • Ted S.||

    Where's Baylen's food trucks article?

  • Snark Plissken||

    The squirrels parked it perpendicular to the virtual curb.

  • Almanian (yeah, I said it)||

    Too bad they also parked it in a "No Parking" zone.

    Here's your ticket. Have a nice day.

  • Ted S.||

    Would be US Ambassador to Norway, in confirmation hearings, refers to Norway's President. The country is a constitutional monarchy with a Prime Minister.

    He also refers to one of the major parties in the governing coalition as fringe for having the wrong views on immigration -- that error is more understandable since much of Europe's media class in my experience shares the same view and propagandizes endlessly to that effect.

  • Snark Plissken||

    The Progress Party may be extreme in their beliefs—in the past they have advocated capping the number of new immigrants to Norway at 1,000 per year and testing all new arrivals for AIDS

    My, that certainly is extreme. As opposed to the 4th most popular party in Norway, Socialist Left Party, which merely states that capitalism is "evil and stupid."

  • ||

  • Ted S.||

    Some children are more equal than others.

  • Rich||

    It's actually Minister of Children, Equality and Social Inclusion.

    Our cabinet position names pale in comparison.

  • Snark Plissken||

    As deputy leader of the Socialist Youth, Lysbakken described himself as a Marxist, and expressed wishes to "abolish capitalism" as well as the Oslo Stock Exchange.

    Associating yourself with the professed ideology of regimes that caused something like 100 million deaths in the 20th century is not extreme at all.

  • BardMetal||

    In Europe the difference between being a loving caring, and mainstream party, versus an evil right-wing neo-nazi party is your views on immigration.

    You could be the most densely populated nation in Europe, and have a well known TV celebrity murdered, by a Muslim man calling for Sharia law, and you'll still be labeled a right-wing racist nazi, for even suggesting that Holland might want to revisit their immigration policy.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Freedom of movement and of movement of labor is a freedom coequal with freedom of trade, contract, movement of capital, etc.

  • Snark Plissken||

    The freedom become a permanent underclass dependent on the welfare state is a God-given right.

  • BardMetal||

    That's just a modernized version of the tax that non-muslims are supposed to pay to their Muslim masters.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    The classic argument of slavers is 'sure this is a swell freedom ideally, but if we grant it now it will lead to this and that because of that and this, so we better restrict it.'

  • BardMetal||

    I don't even know what you're responding to.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    cf. the following

    "Sure, freedom of movement is good, but with our large modern welfare state we just can not allow it."

    with

    "Sure, we are supposed to have a smaller, less intrusive federal government, but with our large, interconnected modern economy we just can not allow it."

    "Sure, we would let people buy whatever they want from producers unregulated, but in this large, modern economy where so many products come from so far away from constantly changing corporate producers, people can not keep up with who to trust and so we can not allow it."

    "Sure, the 2nd Amendment talks about a right of the people to be armed, but in our modern society with the technology to make assault rifles we can not allow that."

    "Sure, people should be able to spend money on political speech, but in our modern society with the presence of larger, more powerful corporations than existed at the Founding we can not allow it."

  • OneOut||

    Corporations were once required to have their own army and navy in order to get a corporate charter approved by the Queen.

    Modern corporations are pussys by comparison.

  • Robert||

    The classic argument of slavers is 'sure this is a swell freedom ideally, but if we grant it now it will lead to this and that because of that and this, so we better restrict it.


    But couldn't that also be an argument, not just of slavers, but of libertarians? I mean, what if it appears in someone's judgment to be true that allowing freedom of some kind in the short run leads to less freedom in the long run? I don't know if it's true in the case in question, but it's certainly plausible.

  • BardMetal||

    Don't get all preachy. How free is western Europe going to be if it starts turning into Yugoslavia 2.0?

    Or are you so zealous in your beliefs that even if a large population that is vocally hostile to the nation it's moving into, that you are ok with it?

    Have you even considered the possibility that Islam might not be 100% compatible with western civilization?

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    "Have you even considered the possibility that Islam might not be 100% compatible with western civilization?"

    There is a fellow on recent threads saying the same thing about Africans. People used to say this about Asians, Southern European 'races' and Jews too.

  • BardMetal||

    So in other words no you haven't.

    Hey people hated the Huns, the Mongols, the Saxons, and various other groups too. I guess they were just being mean old racists.

    Oh and Islam isn't a race by the way so most of your examples don't really fit, it's a religion, and one that seems very hard to separate from the political realm. Want an example? Look at virtually any Muslim majority country, and why you're there look at how well religious minorities are treated there. I doubt all that intolerance is just a coincidence.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Jews are not a race either, and they were one of my examples. At one time Catholic immigration was strongly opposed in the US because their culture was thought to be incompatible with democracy. People mentioned how religious minorities in Catholic countries were historically treated during those debates.

    There are illiberal Islamic nations, but the most illiberal regimes in the last century were European (Germany, Russia).

  • BardMetal||

    This is like mental version of being on auto-pilot.

    Hey I just built a transporter out of old beer cans, and bubble gum to take me to the moon. People laughed at me, but they laughed at Copernicus, Columbus, and Einstein too, so obviously my idea will work, because people reacted the same way to me.

    Do you see what wrong with your people were mean to Catholics, blacks, blah blah blah argument?

    You shouldn't automatically hate, or embrace anything without finding out what it is first.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I think Lynchpin's argument below properly guides what you would be finding out. Plenty of Islamic people live in Western nations peacefully and productively.

    And there were social problems heavily associated with the populations I named that were complained of in earlier times that were pointed to at the time. My point is that as conditions and time changed those problems fell away, the conclusion being that the issues stemmed less from the populations and their 'culture' than the conditions.

  • OneOut||

    "Plenty of Islamic people live in Western nations peacefully and productively."

    That's because they aren't in the majority.

    Kipling said it best. "the border of Islam is bloody".

    Can anyone here name an Islamic country that abuts a non Islamic country in the here and now, where there isn't border strife ? Off of the top of my head I cannot.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Off the top of my head, Malayasia.

  • DblEagle||

    Nope. The Thai-Malay border is the scene of a bloody Islamic insurgency that costs almost 50 dead Thais some months. The primary targets are teachers, monks and security forces and the bombs are getting bigger.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    There are illiberal Islamic nations, but the most illiberal regimes in the last century were European (Germany, Russia).

    That's a bold fucking claim, considering both regimes looked back at the Ottoman Empire's genocide of Armenians and others for inspiration.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Inspiration does not equal scope, and that was the basis of my claim.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    You really need to read up on the Ottoman/Young Turk genocides of Armenians, Assyrians, and Greeks if you think the scope is not comparable (per capita). And while you're at it, take some time to learn about Muhammad Amin al-Husayni, Ottoman artillery officer and Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, who was a confidant and adviser of one Adolf Hitler. Al-Husayni's role as one of the architects of the Holocaust was well documented in contemporary German sources.

    Far from being separate,the ideology of the Ottoman Empire has a clear and unbroken continuity to the illiberal regimes of Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Of course if we are talking about different things and using different criteria then our answers will be different.

    When I said 'illiberal regimes' I was not only referring to attempted genocides, but the totalitarian structures, the level of government control and intrusiveness, and my measure of 'scope' was the population subjected to that.

    But on the topic of attempted genocides, when you say that the Ottoman genocides of the Armenians were greater 'per capita', do you mean 'per capita' of Armenians, per capita of people under the Ottoman Empire, or per capita of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire? And what would you be comparing that to with the Nazi and Soviet mass killings?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    When I said 'illiberal regimes' I was not only referring to attempted genocides, but the totalitarian structures, the level of government control and intrusiveness

    Right, I had the same thing in mind as well. And again, I suggest you read up on the Ottomans if you think they weren't among the most totalitarian regimes in history. If the Ottomans appear to lag behind the Nazis or Soviets in some area, remember to take into account that they didn't have the technology available to them that latter regimes had. (Thanks IBM!)

    As for your question, I mean "per capita of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire", and that would be compared with the Nazi genocide. On the other hand the Soviet killings were indiscriminate democide.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    It seems you concede the Ottoman state lagged behind the Nazis or Soviets, you just ascribe it to technology.

    As to your second point, I just want to be sure I understand you: you are comparing the number of Armenians killed by the Ottomans relative to the number of Armenians that lived under the Ottomans, and you are (or maybe you are not) comparing that to the number of, say, Jews killed by the Nazis relative to the number of Jew that lived under the Nazis or the number of Ukranians killed by the Soviets relative to the number of Ukranians that lived under them? And you are saying the former is higher than the latter?

    Even were this so I am not sure what you say undercuts what I did, because one can just as easily measure mass killings by total number as per capita amounts.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    HM

    I not claim to be extensively read on this subject, but some cursory internet searching provides this source which claims that the Armenian Genocide involved the killing of 1.5 million out of a population of 2.5 million living under the Ottomans, which would be 60%, correct?:

    http://www.umd.umich.edu/dept/.....ocide.html

    While this source gives the percentages of Jews of various Nazi controlled lands that were killed by the Nazis:

    http://www.jewishvirtuallibrar.....table.html

    The numbers in the latter for most of the nations seem comparable if not higher.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    The numbers in the latter for most of the nations seem comparable if not higher.

    Right, comparable, which is what I argued in my original post. If the Ottomans had access to poison gas or other such technology to kill on a greater scale, the numbers would have even been higher.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    The numbers in the latter for most of the nations seem comparable if not higher.

    Right, comparable, which is what I argued in my original post. If the Ottomans had access to poison gas or other such technology to kill on a greater scale, the numbers would have even been higher.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Not just Armenians, but Assyrians, Jews, and Greeks as well. Just Armenians would be lower than the Holocaust or the Holodomor. But with the four groups together, it is comparable.

  • MSimon||

    According to DNA Jews are a race.

  • ||

    There is a fellow on recent threads saying the same thing about Africans. People used to say this about Asians, Southern European 'races' and Jews too.

    Let's play "Spot the Difference"

    Islam is a ___

    African, Asian, Southern European and Jew are ___

    I won't keep you in suspense. Islam is a religion. African, Asian, Southern European and Jew are races/ethnicities.

    A religion is a set of rules or philosophy that a person voluntarily chooses to reflect their worldview and guide them through moral and ethical decisions. Race and ethnicity are descriptions of certain physical characteristics or geographical locations of human beings.

    Now that we've spotted the difference, is it possible that a religion might be incompatible or hostile to western philosophy (the underlying commonality of "western civilization")? Is it possible that a race or ethnicity might be incompatible with western philosophy?

    Okay, I'll spare you the suspense again. The answers are "Yes" and "No", respectively. The reason that a religion might be incompatible with a particular philosophy is because they are alike. The reason that a race or ethnicity cannot be incompatible with a particular philosophy is because they are not alike.

    Now, that doesn't actually answer the question of whether Islam is compatible with western civilization, but it might spare us any obviously fallacious analogies.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Jews are a race? Is that how Sammy Davis was a Jew?

  • Bill||

    Afica, Asia, and Jew? Let's see ..... They are all continents, right?

  • LynchPin1477||

    Islam isn't a person and neither is Middle East. Judge individuals, not collectives.

  • BardMetal||

    Oh for the love of god. Some of these comments are started to sound like an after school special.

    Really? You don't judge Democrats, and Republicans? Communists, and Nazis? You never judge groups of people based upon their ideas and beliefs?

    People are placed in groups because they all have something in common that define them.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I think what is objected to is mistaking, or exaggerating, what they might have in common that defines them as member. 'Islam' is a group with a great deal of variation in it. There might be some percentage in there that have the attributes you are objecting to and who also want to immigrate to act upon them, but there is some percentage to which that does not apply. At what ratio would you make policy restricting the latter with the former?

  • BardMetal||

    What is objected to is me even suggesting that maybe, just maybe, that Islam might not be 100% compatible with Western civilization. That turning western Europe into Yugoslavia, probably isn't going to do much to advance liberty, and will have the opposite effect.

    Look I'm open to the possibility that I could be wrong are you? I think we should be open to all ideas, even ones that make us uncomfortable.

    Be honest. Have you ever even considered the possibility that Islamic immigration into Europe might have some negative consequences?

    I suggest the possibility, and I'm immediately preached at by two people who frankly, I don't think have given the idea any thought whatsoever.

    And thats the problem. It is a topic that has become so taboo in our society we can't even discuss it honestly. This belief that every person on Earth is basically an American deep inside who just dresses differently and talks differently has become an unquestionable article of faith among far too many people.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I do not think or charge anything bad about you for bringing up the question, I just think it involves an overgeneralization that, in my opinion, cannot trump the basic liberty interest at stake.

    I think, for example, most muslims that live in the US seem compatible with our political system and values. And so I think to the extent that muslims in any given area appear not to be it is more due to the history and conditions there than Islam itself.

  • OneOut||

    "it is more due to the history and conditions there than Islam itself."

    Islam is both a religion and a political system. Much like global warmist.

    Islam is responsible for the history and conditions in those areas.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I was including places like France and other European nations that seem to have trouble with illiberal Muslims in their population. They face high unemployment and other measures making assimilation difficult, and those conditions and history are not attributable to Islam.

  • ||

    They face high unemployment and other measures making assimilation difficult, and those conditions and history are not attributable to Islam.

    A relevant question here might be "What do other groups in France who face identical conditions do?" If the conditions are equal but the reactions to those conditions differ, an underlying ideological viewpoint might explain why.

    But then I'm sure the French economy is institutionally biased against Muslims, so there's no comparison.

  • LynchPin1477||

    Be honest. Have you ever even considered the possibility that Islamic immigration into Europe might have some negative consequences?

    Yes. And I'm not trying to preach. But there are moderate Muslims, I know a few, and they live and work in this and many other countries without any negative consequences. All I am saying is, don't assume that everyone who is Muslim and/or from the Middle East is an extremist.

    As for more conservative Muslims -- well, what sort of negative consequences do you have in mind?

  • LynchPin1477||

    Honestly, I try not to. I may judge the R and D parties on their adopted platforms, but I try not to assume everyone who calls themselves an R or D follows the party line. Similarly with communists -- I try not to automatically assume they want to force communism on everyone else, though that usually does end up being the case. Nazis would be a different case in this day and age. Anyone who calls themselves a Nazi does so with full knowledge of what that represents.

    My point is that being Muslim or coming from, say, Saudi Arabia doesn't automatically make one a proponent of Sharia law and incompatible with Western society. I'm a practicing Catholic and there a number of issues that I strongly disagree with the Church on. And that is because Catholic is not the only thing that defines me. Same principle here.

  • Virginian||

    There are no negative effects to European welfare, immigration, and naturalization policies. Anyone who argues otherwise is just a racist.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Oh, for Pete's sake lay down your victim card for a second. No one here is calling anyone racist but pointing out that generalizations about such large cultural and/or ethnic groups are too broad to base moral or policy judgments on the entire populations (and that this has been the case historically).

  • Virginian||

    Swedish rape rate has doubled in the past decade. That didn't just happen without a cause.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Right. In this case the cause is statistical shenanigans designed to skew the demographics to support the Scandinavian gender equality warriors' narrative

    But that is a misconception, according to Klara Selin, a sociologist at the National Council for Crime Prevention in Stockholm. She says you cannot compare countries' records, because police procedures and legal definitions vary widely.

    "In Sweden there has been this ambition explicitly to record every case of sexual violence separately, to make it visible in the statistics," she says.

    "So, for instance, when a woman comes to the police and she says my husband or my fiance raped me almost every day during the last year, the police have to record each of these events, which might be more than 300 events. In many other countries it would just be one record - one victim, one type of crime, one record."
  • Heroic Mulatto||

  • Virginian||

    The thing is, the number of reported rapes has been going up in Sweden - it's almost trebled in just the last seven years. In 2003, about 2,200 offences were reported by the police, compared to nearly 6,000 in 2010.

    Obviously there's issues with statistics. It's also true that the true number of rapes is impossible to determine. But contrary to Klara Selin's fanciful assertion that the rise can be explained by the apparently common practice of constant spousal rape, the number of women reporting they've been raped has shot up dramatically. It's not all attributable to changes in reporting rules or rescheduling of crime.

    Particularly troubling is, if you dig into the numbers, immigrants (in the Swedish case overwhelmingly Muslim) are four to five times as likely to rape as natives. That's not a statistical blip or tiny difference. It also puts paid to the leftist assertion that the huge rise can be attributed to more women reporting their rapes. While some of the jump can be explained by that, the data proves that most of it can be explained by the fact that the government of Sweden has allowed a huge influx of men from a culture that doesn't share the Western values when it comes to a woman's right to be free of rape.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    immigrants (in the Swedish case overwhelmingly Muslim) are four to five times as likely to rape as natives.

    Are you saying immigrants everywhere are 4 to 5 times more likely to be rapists? Do you have a cite for that?

  • Virginian||

    Are you saying immigrants everywhere are 4 to 5 times more likely to be rapists? Do you have a cite for that?

    No I did not mean to imply that, though I can see how the sentence I wrote might read that way. I'm talking specifically about Muslim immigrants in Sweden.

    I think here in the US we have mostly Mexican and other Latin American immigrants, who if they have higher crime rates tend to be mostly of the DUI or drunken brawl variety, or simple "crimes" of lacking papers. Not to mention the fact that there is a skew towards young males in the US illegal immigrant population, which would account for a higher rate of crime in general, because 90% or greater of all crime crime in all human societies is committed by young men.

    Culture does matter, and there is not a widespread acceptance of rape as justified in the culture of Mexico or other nations south of the USA. The same can not be said for the source of Sweden's immigrants.

  • Robert||

    OK, but suppose those rapists hadn't been allowed to migrate to Sweden. You saying they wouldn't've committed as many rapes where they came from? If immigration isn't increasing the incidence of rape in the world, but only where the rapes are occurring, why should we care?

  • ||

    If immigration isn't increasing the incidence of rape in the world, but only where the rapes are occurring, why should we care?

    If you like big band music, why wouldn't you want it played live in your living room at 2 in the morning?

    Proximity to the location is meaningful for women who are faced with the differential likelihood of rape. That a woman in country XYZ was spared being raped because her rapist, who emigrated from country XYZ, raped her instead probably isn't all that comforting to the victim of a rape, regardless of her location. And I wouldn't her blame her for caring about the issue.

  • Virginian||

    OK, but suppose those rapists hadn't been allowed to migrate to Sweden. You saying they wouldn't've committed as many rapes where they came from? If immigration isn't increasing the incidence of rape in the world, but only where the rapes are occurring, why should we care?

    You assume there'd be an equal amount of rapes if they were still in their home countries. In actuality there are other factors at work. It's easier for them to rape in Sweden because in Sweden women walk around at night alone, because it's a civilized Western nation. Back home is a different story.

    Of course the model solution is armed Swedish women. But that might be too much sexy for the world to handle.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Virginian, I was not, in my reply to you, arguing the merits of whether Islamic immigration is a good thing, but rather simply saying that while I know people outside of this board might frequently throw out the charge of racism to anyone who brings that up, we here are not doing that, but just saying we think, on the merits, it is incorrect. So you do not have to posture about people calling you racist here.

  • Virginian||

    When I did I say anyone here was doing that? I was simply mocking the propensity for people on Tumblr or Reddit or in a college classroom to shut down debate by yelling RACIST at the top of their lungs.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    OK, fair enough. It seemed like by posting that here you might be referring to people here disagreeing as making that charge, but if I inferred wrongly then mea culpa.

  • RishJoMo||

    Sometimes man you jsut have to roll with it dawg.

    www.Anon-Stuff.tk

  • Rich||

    Alternatively, slower economic growth might just be what more Americans prefer. "A slowing economic growth rate is not a problem," Lindsey writes, "to the extent it reflects shifting individual preferences."

    I think I get the point if it still holds were the paragraph written:

    Alternatively, increased puppy stomping might just be what more Americans prefer. "An increasing rate of stomping puppies to death is not a problem to the extent it reflects shifting individual preferences."

  • Almanian (yeah, I said it)||

    The only good puppy is a dead puppy.

  • Rich||

    The only good economy is a slowly growing economy.

  • JD||

    Alternatively, slower loss of liberty might just be what more Americans prefer. "A slowing liberty loss rate is not a problem," Lindsey writes, "to the extent it reflects shifting individual preferences."

  • Robert||

    I don't think that's what he meant. He's allowing for the possibility that people don't want to work as much, rather than it just being that they're prevented from working.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    The only thing that can save our economy is increased public investment in infrastructure improvement. And we also need to increase our investment in education by adding more public school teachers to make the next generation competitive on a global scale. We need trade tariffs which will make certain that products manufactured in the US get priority in the American marketplace. We need fair labor practices and public policy to ensure our workers receive a living wage and we need to punish those who would ship American jobs overseas. We need to get our annual budget deficit under control by tapping into that underutilized wealth held onto by the upper levels of society, telling them, "You have enough; it's time to give back," ending tax loopholes which only serve to incentivize bad behavior. We need to extend unemployment benefits and add more tax credits for those lower and middle class who are struggling to raise their families.

    With these common sense approaches together we can make America strong again.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Also some contradictory shit about immigration. I don't know you figure it out.

  • Ted S.||

    That contradictory shit about immigration is a fringe view, of course; see above.

  • Rich||

    Fist, add something like "We need to lower prices of goods and services to stimulate American purchasing power" and you're a shoo-in for President.

  • Sevo||

    Also, "We need no more low-paying jobs! And we know how to accomplish that!"

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Yeah, that's a promise too easily delivered.

  • JWatts||

    We'll set minimum wage to $24 per hour and every one will be middle class!

  • Res ipsa loquitur||

    Why not set it at $1,000 per hour and make everyone rich ?

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Because then everyone would be in the 1% which is bad(tm). Duh.

  • deepspeed||

    We could all live like kings! (Unless, by some terrible coincidence, prices happen to increase significantly, for whatever reason.)

  • Snark Plissken||

    What about eliminating ATMs and airport ticketing kiosks? You simply have no understanding of the basic principles of creating jobs.

  • Almanian (yeah, I said it)||

    MY LIFE FOR YOU!

    BUM DE BUM!

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Just so you know, I will be taking you for granted now. I assume that won't be a problem.

  • JD||

    I like your ideas and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

  • Rich||

  • Number 2||

    I clicked on the link and got a story praising Obama for his creation of a "task force" to combat sexual assault on college campuses.

    Anything to divert attention from the failure of Obamacare.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I was gonna teach elementary school, but then I got high.

  • From the Tundra||

    That's some world-class pearl clutching, right there.

    That said, it was kind of an asshole thing to do - wasting weed on people who wouldn't appreciate it.

    Oh, and fuck you very much for the brain worm:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WeYsTmIzjkw

  • SusanM||

    Are you referencing Afroman's "Cause I got high" or Shel Silverstiens "I got stoned and I missed it"?

  • MSimon||

    It was a Pot Luck.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "Alternatively, slower economic growth might just be what more Americans prefer. "A slowing economic growth rate is not a problem," Lindsey writes, "to the extent it reflects shifting individual preferences."

    A lot of people who live in suburbs in the western part of the country would make more money, in absolute terms, if they quit their job, moved to New York City, and found work doing the same thing they're doing now.

    It costs more to live in New York, and employers have to compensate their employees accordingly. But how many suburbanites in the western U.S. want to leave their superior housing quality, better schools, and better weather, etc. behind--just so they can make more money in New York City?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    better schools

    Huh? With the notable exceptions of Montana and Colorado, the NAEP scores of schools out West are abysmal, especially compared to the Eastern seaboard. Follow this link and select the "K-12 Achievement" chart if you wish to know more.

  • Ken Shultz||

    In part, I was talking about access, too, with issues like this:

    "Getting Into Kindergarten in New York City Will Remain Stressful"

    http://www.theatlantic.com/edu.....ul/280072/

    I think a lot of people prefer to live somewhere, where if they want to send their kid to a private school, they mostly just need to show up and pay tuition.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Even in NYC, not all private schools are like that. Of course the Atlantic is going to focus on the hyper-elite private Kindergartens that only serve the purpose of allowing the rich to signal their status to their peers.

  • Ken Shultz||

    I guess you live in NYC?

    Point is that people aren't flocking there--despite the higher pay--because of quality of life preferences, which is exactly what Lindsey was writing about.

    "A slowing economic growth rate is not a problem," Lindsey writes, "to the extent it reflects shifting individual preferences."

    He's saying that utilitarian thinking fails to account for qualitative considerations again!

    Stats I've seen suggest that greater New York state lost 1.6 million residents over a decade--mostly made up for by immigrants, who typically don't have as many options when they first get here.

    http://www.empirecenter.org/pb.....080311.cfm

    And people from suburbs in the western U.S. are not flocking to New York City to take advantage of the city's public school system. They'd rather forgo higher salaries and New York's school system for suburban cities in the west and wherever it is they're sending their kids now.

    I know I wouldn't send my kids to public school in New York City--I don't care how the schools are ranked. If I couldn't escape from New York, I'd rather home school 'em.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I guess you live in NYC?

    No, I live in New Hampshire, but I'm not as jingoistic as you to blindly cheer for the schools in my general geographic area without empirical evidence.

    Furthermore, I'm only questioning your assertion about the quality of schools, that most people find an overall lower cost of living in the suburbs is pretty obvious.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "No, I live in New Hampshire, but I'm not as jingoistic as you to blindly cheer for the schools in my general geographic area without empirical evidence."

    My assertion is that people in the west are not moving to New York city--despite the higher salaries--for qualitative reasons.

    If you have some stats to show that people from the western U.S. are moving to New York City becasue they want to send their children to New York's public schools?

    Well, I'd love to see a source for that!

    "Furthermore, I'm only questioning your assertion about the quality of schools, that most people find an overall lower cost of living in the suburbs is pretty obvious."

    Way to completely miss the point.

    It isn't about the lower cost of living. It's about the quality of life. What's this, the third time I've quoted this?

    "A slowing economic growth rate is not a problem," Lindsey writes, "to the extent it reflects shifting individual preferences."

    Individual preferences. We're talking qualitative. Understand?

    New York City has some nice museums, culture, and restaurants. If you want to be an investment banker in this country, you really don't want to be anywhere else.

    To most other Americans, it's also a qualitative shit hole, and we know this because so many of them do not move there--despite the higher salaries. Is any of this getting through?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    That's all well and good, but in your original post you used the phrase " But how many suburbanites in the western U.S. want to leave their ... better schools behind". When I pointed out with empirical data that your observation was incorrect, instead of just admitting you were talking out of your ass, you decided to go apeshit with a "New York sucks!" screed.

    If you want to state that other places in country have a better quality of life, then fine. But if you're saying that schools in the western US are of better quality than those in NY, then you're just wrong.

  • ||

    But if you're saying that schools in the western US are of better quality than those in NY, then you're just wrong.

    Define "quality". Is it student grades alone? Safety of the neighborhood? Age of the building? Extracurricular programs?

    Also, NY's grade in the report you linked to may be partially skewed by the fact that it has an outsize population of extremely wealthy people. When making blanket statements, "New York has better quality schools than Colorado" may not hold true for, say, a wealthy suburb of Denver compared to, say, Harlem.

    And that gets at the whole point. The upper middle class suburbanite from CO with 2 kids living in a 4 bed, 3 bath house on a fastidiously taken care of half acre of property with 2 Cadillacs parked in the driveway half a mile from the newly-built high school with the computer lab of full iMacs could make twice as much in NYC, but living in a 2 bed 2 bath high rise, watching a hobo take a shit in a box on the subway every morning on the commute to work, sending his kids to school at a century old building in need of renovation with junkies shooting up a couple blocks away. The quality of the schools may entail more than some other kid getting A's vs some other kid getting C's, in the same way that the quality of his commute may entail more than getting from point A to point B or the quality of housing may entail more than the structural integrity of the respective buildings in CO and NY.

  • RishJoMo||

    Hey that dollar looks pretty cool. Can I have it?

    www.Anon-Stuff.tk

  • Rich||

    AnonBot, you a funny guy!

  • ||

    Pedo-bot continues to amaze.

  • Rich||

    Totally OT, but entertaining: Self-described redneck disentangles two bucks

  • MSimon||

    But can he do a hundred bucks?

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Educational attainment levels are stunted by high-school graduation levels lower than they were four decades ago.

    Let's not pretend the students who do actually attain "graduation" are qualitatively equal to those even one generation ago.

    Thanks, AFT!

  • Rich||

    Yeah, I liked the "educational attainment levels" too. Reminded me of a cartoon in which a king decrees: "I want mine to be the most highly educated kingdom in the world, so I hereby award everyone a diploma!"

  • MSimon||

    Why not award them a diplomat?

  • Snark Plissken||

    Which is why mandatory public pre-school education is of vital importance. Learning to use crayons and glue-sticks should be done in lockstep.

  • Ken Shultz||

    I suspect they learn more math and science than they used to, but I don't know about the other stuff.

    I don't know what they're learning in "social studies", civics, English, and history.

  • Smilin' Joe Fission||

    I suspect they learn more math and science than they used to, but I don't know about the other stuff.

    I wouldn't suspect this at all.

  • FreeToFear||

    More math options available but only pursued by small minority. Science (courses at least) about the same

  • Trials and Trippelations||

    Educational attainment levels are stunted by high-school graduation levels lower than they were four decades ago.

    Could this be because now many (most?) states high school graduation requirements are geared towards four year college? My home state of North Carolina greatly increased the requirements to get a HS diploma in the 2000s. Last I heard you needed a year of a foreign language and algebra II just to name a few things. I wouldn't be surprised if volunteer hours are required too.

  • Trials and Trippelations||

    I take back what I said about NC. It seems they walked back their requirements to something more reasonable.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Could this be because now many (most?) states high school graduation requirements are geared towards four year college?

    Bingo. And Common Core is going to make things worse on that front.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Today's public policy infrastructure, he writes, is "rife with barriers to entrepreneurship, competition, innovation, and growth," not to mention subsidies that tilt the playing field in favor of incumbents, complicated and poorly designed tax rules, and legal mechanisms that obscure price signals.

    Our quest for social justice is bearing its desired fruit.

  • GregMax||

    A durian up the wazoo . . .

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Huh. Melissa Harris Racetroller is talking about what a bunch of insensitive monsters Rethuglitards are.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    David Cay Johnston (whoever he is) just blamed Republicans for gangs.

  • MSimon||

    Probably blames them for bangs as well.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    I suspect they learn more math and science than they used to

    Based on the number of young store and restaurant employees completely incapable of making change without the assistance of a cash register, I find that claim risible.

  • robc||

    Actual conversation between my fiancee and a cashier yesterday.

    Product was $9 but there was some 25 cents off promotion.

    Cashier: So that would be $8.50?

  • ||

    I actually had cashier count my change back to me properly the other day, and she never looked at the electronic display. I was stunned.

    She was a retiree who took the job to get out, meet people and keep busy. She told me she had tried to teach the younger ones but was unable to.

  • JWatts||

    I often hand the cashier (depending on my change in pocket), enough to ensure I get back exactly a quarter (or some other amount that reduces the amount of coins in my pocket). Then when they ring it up on the register and realize that the odd change I gave them turns in to a quarter (or some even amount) back, they look up in surprise as if I performed some magic trick. Because apparently basic arithmetic is now fucking magic.

  • ||

    I've had that happen many times, but occasionally you get the sharp kids who totally get it. There will always be smart kids, and there will always be dumb ones. The smart ones will go on to succeed, the dumb ones, probably not. It's the way of the world, as much as some people want to change that.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    That's not fair.

  • Ted S.||

    I tried this once when I was studying in Russia 20+ years ago. Something came to 32 rubles 80, so I gave the cashier a 100 and a 3 (yeah, they had 3-ruble notes at the time) so that I'd get back two 25s, two 10s, and a 20-kopeck piece.

    The cashier gave me back the 3, proceeded to make 68 rubles in change, and didn't have any 20-kopeck pieces so I got back 20 1-kopeck pieces instead.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    I guess you do not see anything amusing in you making this claim with such an un-generalizable sample. The education your generation had was certainly superior!

  • Virginian||

    My generation might be worse at math, at the hard sciences, have little to no real knowledge of history, but damn it we know who the oppressors are.

  • OldMexican||

    Is slow economic growth the new normal?


    Contraction should be the new normal, because we have 7 billion people now who want to live like whites when there was only 1 billion inhabitants of the Earth back in 1780, and thus we're killing the planet - Bill Nye, on Stossel.

    No, really, that is what he (basically) said and implied, while I was watching with total amazement. It was sad and creepy at the same time that a scientist would show such intellectual meltdown on TV.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Bill Nye is not a "scientist", he is a mechanical engineer. Wearing a lab coat is not enough to make one a scientist.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    The big controversy around Nye right now is that he has decided to debate creationist Ken Hamm about creationism. The debate is hosted by Hamm's organization, which is trying to raise funds for a creationist museum project about Noah's Ark that at one time was to get public funding. Some are mad about Nye agreeing because they think it will re-enforce the idea that there is a 'debate,' others because the proceeds for ticket sales for the debate go to Ham's organization.

  • MSimon||

    Noah's Arc? Some one contact Electric Boat.

  • Snark Plissken||

    Do you think having physics degree instead of an ME degree is what would make him a scientist?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    No, it would be a career in theoretical research or something similar, as opposed to a career as an engineer, that would make him a scientist.

    I'm not saying that one is better than the other, just that Bill Nye is an engineer, not a scientist.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Is there no such thing as engineering research, or is your claim just that Nye has never been involved in such a thing?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    You know, you could just follow the links provided to find the answer to your question.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    Your links to Nye's Wikipedia and resume would answer my question about whether you thought there was such a thing as engineering research?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Your links to Nye's Wikipedia and resume would answer my question about whether you thought there was such a thing as engineering research?

    No, because that's a silly question. Is a historical researcher a scientist? The reason we call a scientist a scientist is because they do science. Engineering is not science; if it were, we would call it "Science" and not "Engineering". Do some engineers do science in their work? Yes. Just as some scientists do mathematics in their work, but we don't call them mathematicians, do we?

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    This was what I was getting at: whether you think anyone working in the field of engineering deserves the label of 'scientist,' and that is not something Bill Nye's Wiki page or resume can tell me.

    As to the merits of your argument, I find it to be unpersuasive and begging the question. We call biology, biology, and those who work in that field biologists, but we call it science and those people scientists. You just assert that those who work in engineering or as engineers should not be so called without any argument I can see beyond an assertion that 'we don't call it science.' If you tell me what it is that defines a science, apart from any given label we give to any of them, then we could see if what some engineers do falls within that or not.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    How about I give you a quote from an engineering textbook on the matter:

    Engineering is quite different from science. Scientists try to understand nature. Engineers try to make things that do not exist in nature. Engineers stress invention. To embody an invention the engineer must put his idea in concrete terms, and design something that people can use. That something can be a device, a gadget, a material, a method, a computing program, an innovative experiment, a new solution to a problem, or an improvement on what is existing. Since a design has to be concrete, it must have its geometry, dimensions, and characteristic numbers. Almost all engineers working on new designs find that they do not have all the needed information. Most often, they are limited by insufficient scientific knowledge. Thus they study mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology and mechanics. Often they have to add to the sciences relevant to their profession. Thus engineering sciences are born. -- Classical and Computational Solid Mechanics, YC Fung and P. Tong. World Scientific. 2001.
  • ||

    This was what I was getting at: whether you think anyone working in the field of engineering deserves the label of 'scientist,' and that is not something Bill Nye's Wiki page or resume can tell me.

    His mistake was presuming that you knew the difference between science and engineering so that you could use the identity property to answer your own question.

  • JWatts||

    "I'm not saying that one is better than the other, just that Bill Nye is an engineer, not a scientist."

    I disagree with that. Bill Nye does basic science and he teaches basic science. You certainly don't have to have a degree in science to be a 'scientist'.

    That being said Bill Nye is a left leaning progressive.

  • ||

    I think of engineering as an applied science.

    Having a degree in....well anything at all, does not make one a scientist. Nye is an idiot.

  • Ken Shultz||

    To me, a scientist is anybody that uses the scientific method to study things about the physical world.

    The idea that science is something that is done by specific people we call "scientist" looks like an appeal to authority fallacy to me.

    If someone with a PhD in physics gets on his knees and prays, he's not doing science, and if a priest at some Catholic university helps out running and analyzing arrays and doing biomedical research, then he is doing science.

    I don't see why Bill Nye being an engineer makes him any different than a priest that way.

  • MSimon||

    Scientific Method acting?

  • ||

    The idea that science is something that is done by specific people we call "scientist" looks like an appeal to authority fallacy to me.

    That wasn't what HM was saying, it's a function of what they actually do. A mechanical engineer teaching grade school kids about basic science does not a "scientist" make, for the exact reasons you already mentioned - he's simply not doing science. A practicing engineer isn't doing science either, although someone with an engineering degree who does do science could rightfully be called a scientist, the same as someone with a biology degree doing science could be called one, or somebody with an English degree doing science could be called one.

  • LynchPin1477||

    He's been like that for a while now, I think. I'm not sure if people like that realize that words like "contraction" are euphemisms for lots of people dying or if they find a way to ignore the outcomes of their policy preferences.

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    SoCon Phyllis Schafly's Attack on Free Trade Agreements

    "Most Americans believe that the poor job market, especially for young people, is our biggest current problem, and congressional action to promote faster economic growth should be Congress’s number-one priority. But all evidence and past experience conclusively prove that free trade treaties create jobs in foreign countries, not in the United States.

    Bill Clinton promised that NAFTA would produce “more exports and more jobs for the United States,” but instead we now suffer a $60 to $70 billion annual trade deficit with Mexico. Similar phony sales talks about free trade with China resulted in a 2013 trade deficit of $316 billion, and our goods deficit with South Korea has risen to over $17 billion.

    Free trade continues to mean foreigners get jobs, investment and prosperity, while we are the losers. One can only hope that the conservative Republicans who fell for those false promises have learned their lesson."

    http://www.eagleforum.org/publ.....-jobs.html

  • Virginian||

    People think I dislike socons because of their stances on gay marriage or other moral issues. That's not true. I really dislike SoCons because so often they embrace socialism wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross.

  • ||

    So, leftist policies are put in place and the economy begins to tank instead of the equality and prosperity they promised. Mostly what I hear from lefties about that is the equivalent of " We meant for that to happen!".

  • Bo Cara Esq.||

    You can see this 'writ small' in the current urban economic policy campaigns of the left. A 'living wage' and excluding 'big box stores' like Wal-Mart would mean less jobs and cheap goods for the poor in our cities, while the best thing that could be done for the poor in many cities is to lower the taxes on things like gasoline, cigarettes, and other goods that are so regressive in their effect.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    while the best thing that could be done for the poor in many cities is to lower the taxes on things like gasoline

    Heaven forbid that users of a service actually pay for that service. It's just not fair. If I'm poor, then I should get to use the roads for free.

    Sin taxes are a whole other issue.

  • ||

    Heaven forbid that users of a service actually pay for that service. It's just not fair. If I'm poor, then I should get to use the roads for free.

    Because everybody drives on the interstate exclusively with every gallon of gas they purchase.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    leftist policies are put in place and the economy begins to tank instead of the equality and prosperity they promised.

    "The needs of the many, something something, blah blah blah."

  • ||

    I was recently lectured by a 20 y/o about the evils of the modern economy and technology. He told me that wealth is evil.

    I responded with " The reason you think that is because you are unaware of the howling savagery and bone crushing misery being held at bay by our wealth and technology."

    I must have hit a nerve because that shut him up and I could see in his face that he was trying to process that.

  • From the Tundra||

    He may have just wet himself and wasn't sure what to do.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    He drove home to post on Facebook how stupid you are from his cell phone.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    I responded with " The reason you think that is because you are unaware of the howling savagery and bone crushing misery being held at bay by our wealth and technology."

    No kidding. Eking out an existence by scratching in the dirt for sixteen hours a day is hardly what I consider the Good Life.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    My dad was born and raised on a farm. They were still using horses when he was a kid. He thinks tractors are fucking awesome.

    I'm pretty sure he'd tell that kid to shove his whining about the evils of technology right up his ass.

  • ||

    "He thinks tractors are fucking awesome."

    They are, my friend, they truly are. One machine that does the work of thousands of people in a fraction of the time.

    I am in the process of reprogramming that kid. He has no idea what fife without technology is like. Tomorrow I am taking him fishing at Cotile lake. While we are there I will swing by the Hemphill cemetery and show him dozens of baby graves from the yellow fever epidemic and where whole families are buried because their candles and oil lamps burned their houses down.

    He is going to help me thin timber next week. I am going to use a 4x4 and a chainsaw. I will let him start of walking and using a hand saw.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    He is going to help me thin timber next week. I am going to use a 4x4 and a chainsaw. I will let him start of walking and using a hand saw.

    That's tough love for sure!

  • Cdr Lytton||

    And generous! I would have started him off with an axe.

  • MSimon||

    With or without steel toed boots?

  • montana mike||

    On the local news, due to declining mail volumes the USPS will be raising the price of a stamp 3 cents to 49 cents. Suicide by stupid...

  • montana mike||

    Plus the cute, young weekend anchor lady read it w/o a trace of irony.

  • pob||

    my best friend's sister makes $66/hour on the laptop. She has been without work for five months but last month her pay was $14280 just working on the laptop for a few hours. you can try here W­ o­ r­ k­ s­ 7­ 7­ .­ C­ O­ M­

  • pob||

    just as Russell replied I'm shocked that someone can earn $4298 in a few weeks on the computer. look at this now W­ o­ r­ k­ s­ 7­ 7­ .­ C­ O­ M­

  • cheap kits||

    "The only good economy is a slowly growing economy."
    The good economy should be continuable fast growing economy

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