Finally, Air Force Can't Afford Bombers, Schools Can't Hold Bake Sales

Federal law backed by First Lady of America Michelle Obama would prohibit school bake sales:

"This could be a real train wreck for school districts," Lucy Gettman of the National School Boards Association said Friday, a day after the House cleared the bill. "The federal government should not be in the business of regulating this kind of activity at the local level."

The legislation, part of first lady Michelle Obama's campaign to stem childhood obesity, provides more meals at school for needy kids, including dinner, and directs the Agriculture Department to write guidelines to make those meals healthier. The legislation would apply to all foods sold in schools during regular class hours, including in the cafeteria line, vending machines and at fundraisers.

It wouldn't apply to after-hours events or concession stands at sports events.

Cut-seeking United States Air Force considers retiring B-1 bomber:

Early retirement of the entire B-1B fleet could be one cost-saving measure pursued by a committee of Air Force leaders, according to a report published last week by airforce-magazine.com.

The independent publication reporting the possible shelving of the B-1s did not name a source for its information. The magazine is published by the nonprofit Air Force Association, whose membership is made up mainly of retired military personnel and former service members.

With military leaders facing a mandate to save $100 billion over five years, “rumors run rampant,” said Bill Ehrie, a former Dyess Air Force Base commander now involved with the civic committee in Abilene that has rallied in the past to promote Dyess during military realignments.

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  • Federal Dog||

    Michelle Obama needs to find more constructive means of addressing her appearance issues than trying to outlaw venerable school traditions for everyone else in the country.

  • Jeffersonian||

    Nonsense, this is just the sort of dire menace the Constitution was written for. We cannot be too careful lest Johnny and Janey reach for one too many tollhouse cookies, thus breaking the back of American will.

    And don't even get me started on our precious bodily fluids.

  • The Simpsons||

    Homer: "Old people should be studied so that it can be determined which of their bodily fluids can be extracted for our own benefit!"

    Marge: "STOP READING THAT!" (grabs away Ralph Nader pamphlet)

  • Ross Perot||

    I think that was my pamphlet.

  • The Simpsons||

    Yeah, such a BIG fucking difference!

  • Kang (or Kodos)||

    Go ahead, throw your vote away!

  • Homer||

    Don't blame me for the giant death ray, I voted for Kodos!

  • ||

    Gentlemen, this is the "Reason.com" blog we can't have logical thinking in here.

  • Warty||

    Every social ill can be solved with a federal law. This will fix the fat kids and cure diabetes, and there's nothing you can do about it. Suck on that, glibertards.

  • Chony to the Max||

    Exactly. Now that we have some intelligent, capable people in the government, we can make sure that the rest of the country follows suit.

    Sweden has far more stringent laws that combat childhood obesity and they therefore have fewer overweight people.

    But, as the 'tarditarians would say "there's no connection, total coincidence, I'm not listening, it's my right to become obese..."

    Now, all we have to do is to make sure that the current administration never loses power, and then the country will just continue to get better and better, and the "leave my alone" libertards will be forced to pay attention to the likes of me.

  • Jeffersonian||

    Well said, Chony. Even James Madison, in Federalist 97, warned of the existential threat of "fat little fucks" (I'm paraphrasing here) sapping the strength of the nation and championed the power of the Central State to put an end to it once a gimlet-eyed First Lady awakened us to the danger. Thank goodness we have Michelle to tell us what and what not to eat!

  • Chony to the Max||

    Are you a libertarian? I hope not. Libertarians should be forced kicking and screaming into the progressive world. If they do so willingly, then it's not as fun.

    And people should be forced to eat healthily against their will. If they choose to, then they won't recognize how superior healthy eaters like me are, and they won't suffer for their ways, either.

    If people are given options, and choose the correct ones, then what good am I?

  • Tony||

    Better living through compulsion.

  • Rayne||

    I prefer better living through chemistry myself!

  • Tony||

    We'll tell you which chemicals are required, comrade. All others are forbidden.

  • Tommy Chong||

    MY chemicals are NATURAL and you CAN'T tell NATURE what to do, man!

  • Monsato||

    Wanna bet?

  • ||

    Only in fiction have I encountered any non-natural or supernatural drugs, or for that matter, any matter at all that did not have a natural origin. This is, after all, the only universe in which we can presently operate.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    If they do so willingly, then it's not as fun.

    STEVE SMITH has found a new disciple.

  • ||

    "Sweden has far more stringent laws that combat childhood obesity and they therefore have fewer overweight people."

    Not so fast with that "therefore."

    Coincidentally, Sweden is full of Swedes. The portions of America that are full of Swedes have lower obesity rates than portions of America that aren't.

  • ||

    I think you missed the sarcasm there.

    Or I missed the stupid and imagined the sarcasm. "Mussolini made the trains run on time" is not an argument for fascism, just a rebuttal to the pragmatic argument in favor of authoritarianism.

  • Old Salt||

    Every First Lady After Jackie: "Well, *I* think it's bad so it MUST be because there is just NO way that someone as enlightened as *ME* could be wrong on something SO simple!"

    That attitude pretty much sums up just about every political type and their sycophants on the planet to some degree.

    Red, Blue, or what have you, I *believe* that those who are foolish enough to *believe* that they're wise enough are a very unhappy group of people because they *can't* understand *why* the whole world doesn't recognize their talents!

    I think maybe that's why they get off so much on telling everyone what to do?

    I remember the day I started being happy was the day I realized that there are two types of humans:

    "Those who don't have any answers and those who lie about it!"

  • Tim Cavanaugh||

    What was Laura Bush's thing, reading?

    One thing I'll always treasure about Laura Bush: you hardly ever had to see her or hear about her.

  • Old Salt||

    Alright, alright, I forgot about Laura!

    She was definitely preferable to other Modern First Ladies in which she just kicked back and enjoyed the ride. No my-husband-got-elected-so-that-must-mean-I'm-special bullshit campaigns against whatever agenda I think will help the White House and maybe get ME an election down the road! It was a rather refreshing change of pace after Hillary.

    Then again, maybe she was just too busy trying to straighten out those daughters of her's!

    Of course she could have just been too tired from dealing with having Dubbya for a husband!

    Fuck, I feel sorry for the poor girl now...

  • ||

    What a precious human being you are! You do everything you can to make her appear to be an idiot. What exactly did she do to deserve you slamming her parenting or her daughters? I'm glad you feel sorry for her. On the other hand, your just pitiable. Your mommy warned you that you'd turn into what you've become. She's the one I feel sorry for.

  • Rayne||

    Yeah, someone just kicking back and relaxing must be an idiot, right? I mean it's not like her being down to earth is so horrible.

    The fact that that anyone keeps it together in that family is amazing...

  • Laura||

    I got George to stop drinking. Maybe I can get THE WHOLE WORLD TO STOP DRINKING!

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Reading, music for kids, women's health awareness. Real crazy stuff.

  • DRM||

    Yeah, reading, especially for kids. And as she is a former teacher and school librarian, it was a pretty natural fit.

  • Tipper the Gore||

    Hey you **#5%^&&(!!s, don't forget about me!

  • J||

    We're trying to.

  • ||

    Even as a Republican, I have to say I liked Lady Bird Johnson's beautification campaign for Washington DC - initially only private funds and real clean up (you know, pick up trash etc., none of those faux environmental orders) and lots of flower planting. Tough to argue with a program like that. Now once it morphed into getting federal funding, that's a problem.

  • ||

    Why do First Ladies have to have "campaigns"? This stupidity brought us Nancy Reagan's "just say no" anti-drug crusade, Hillary's attempt at proto-Obamacare, I don't remember what stupidity Barbara Bush and Laura Bush engaged in, and now Michelle "man face" Obama's fucking with school lunches.

    There was one president elected. Not him and his wife.

  • Jeffersonian||

    I was trying to remember the Bush-era initiatives, too, and came up blank. I think Babs and Laura pretty much confined their FL-dom activities to pestering school kids with eye-glazing book reading sessions.

  • J||

    At least "just say no" acknowledged there was such a thing as personal choice. Unlike the underlying and continually escalating drug war, of course.

  • Number 2||

    Remember: "Just Say No" was ridiculed not because Nancy Reagan exaggerated the dangers of drugs like marijuana, but because the liberal establishment said it was "unrealistic" to fight drugs by telling kids just to say no, without a multi-million dollar government program to go with it.

  • J||

    More money and more power seem to be the only way for presidential types to solve a problem.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Why do First Ladies have to have "campaigns"?

    Because no First Lady in American history has been capable of fixing a proper "sammich" or fetching a beer, and damn little learning.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    damn little learning.

    damn little interest in learning either.

    *Chops off offending, non-preview clicking finger.*

  • Kolohe||

    I blame Lucy Hayes for the beer thing. Though looking at most of the 19th century Presidential portraits (and Taft's), I'm thinking there weren't too many Sandwich shortages in the White House. (hell McKinley instigated a coup to get the Sandwich Islands.)

  • Robert||

    Lady Bird's was hwy. beautif'n, which mostly amounted to an anti-billboard campaign. Eleanor Roosevelt had more things going than her husband, for longer than he was prez. Jackie had clothes, I don't remember what Mamie had.

  • ||

    In fairness, Lady Bird's beautification campaign also extended to roadside wildflower planting. Not exactly a bad thing, especially in the expanses of nothingness you otherwise have to look at on the Interstate.

    And really...are bake sales held much during school hours? In my part of the world, they're almost exclusively a after-school/extra-curricular events activity type of thing.

  • sevo||

    "And really...are bake sales held much during school hours? In my part of the world, they're almost exclusively a after-school/extra-curricular events activity type of thing."
    So you're fine with outlawing them because you don't do that?

  • jacob||

    Barbara Bush went to the Superdome after Katrina and made the unbelievably idiotic comment about how lucky the people of NOLA were.

    She made an even stupider comment recently about how Sarah Palin should stay in Alaska.

    To her credit, she was long gone from the First Lady position when these were said.

  • AP Editor||

    I just have one question. Where the hell is the goddamn black kid! Preferably a girl for optimum balance. Do this to me again Sakuma, and I'll have your fucking head!

  • ||

    Print|Email
    Reich: Better Blamethrowing Will Fix Economy
    Tim Cavanaugh | December 5, 2010

    Former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich asks who is to blame for the credit unwind:

    A. Big government, bureaucrats, and the cultural and intellectual elites who back them.

    B. Big business, Wall Street, and the powerful and privileged who represent them.

    These are the two competing stories Americans are telling one another.

    Yes, I know: It's more complicated than this. In reality, the lousy economy is due to insufficient demand -- the result of the nation's almost unprecedented concentration of income at the top.

    There seem to be a few steps missing between concentration of wealth and insufficient demand, but the more important question is how Reich knows what sufficient demand is.

    Would $2.4 trillion in additional demand be enough? If you count up all the fiscal bailouts of 2008 and 2009, that is at least how much the taxpayers have spent, every penny of it with just one goal: to take up insufficient demand. There is still insufficient demand for bad mortgages, bad credit card debt, bad auto debt, bad government debt, bad everything debt, and securities backed by bad debt. A non-trivial portion of that money has been spent to hire people directly or pay off contractors who in turn promise to hire people.

    It hasn't worked, and Reich's combination of both amorality and naivety here demonstrates why Bill Clinton ended up picking him up by the seat of his pants and the scruff of his neck and tossing him out of the White House. (Note: Clinton did not really do that, but for a look at how relaxed Reich himself was about facts during that long-ago period, read Jonathan Rauch's 1997 review of Reich's memoir Locked in the Cabinet.)

    Reich again:

    If Obama and the Democrats were serious about story A they'd at least mention it. They'd tell the nation that income and wealth haven't been this concentrated at the top since 1928, the year before the Great Crash...

    But Obama is doing none of this. Instead, he's telling story A.

    Making a big deal out of the deficit -- appointing a deficit commission and letting them grandstand with a plan to cut $4 trillion out of the projected deficit over the next ten years -- $3 of government spending for every $1 of tax increase -- is telling story A.

    Appointing a deficit commission is the meagerist gesture a president can make toward the iron reality that the deficit is now more than $1 trillion every year. Many Americans, who are not Nobel laureates or former cabinet members or developers or bankers, believe this is a problem.

    The straw men Reich shows us are themselves built out of other straw men – abstract Republicans and Democrats who divide a narrative that is then delivered to "the nation."

    Reich believes if the Democrats just jump up and down enough, the people will be enlightened. Here's a more earthly possibility: The people have heard enough about Story A and Story B, and to the extent they showed a preference last month it was for Story A.

    Reich warns President Obama against repeating the errors of Bill Clinton, who applied some pro-market policies -- the most important of which was briefly retarding the growth of government spending -- following the 1994 Republican congressional win. To the untrained eye of the people, these policies seem to have brought about budget surpluses during the dotcom bubble. Understandably, the people would like to try that winning strategy again.

    It might not work this time around, but the presidency is an executive job, not a partisan job. Obama is right to respect the vote. Reich's reality-framing sophistry can't gussy up a tired idea that has now been tested in the economy and at the voting booth, and has failed both times.


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    See all 136 comments | Leave a comment
    hmm|12.5.10 @ 2:54AM|#
    but the more important question is how Reich knows what sufficient demand is.

    The Keynesian Model + some variation there of tells him what the demand should be. I guarantee that is what his answer would be.

    reply to this
    tkwelge|12.5.10 @ 1:52PM|#
    Jesus, tap-dancing, Christ. We're back to the insufficient demand theorem? Someone hit the reset button on the marxism clock.

    reply to this
    Anonymous Coward|12.5.10 @ 3:22AM|#
    That concentration of income, in turn, is due to globalization and technological change -- along with unprecedented campaign contributions and lobbying designed to make the rich even richer and do nothing to help average Americans, insider trading, and political bribery.

    40 lashes for butchering the English language.

    Unless, of course, Mr. Reich is really in favor of insider trading and political bribery.

    reply to this
    John C. Randolph|12.5.10 @ 6:02AM|#
    Unless, of course, Mr. Reich is really in favor of insider trading and political bribery.

    Of course he is. He's a career politician.

    -jcr

    reply to this
    Libertarian|12.5.10 @ 6:43AM|#
    I'd like to see Reich draw a Venn diagram of the two groups behind story A and story B. It might not be concentric circles, but........

    reply to this
    Mr Whipple|12.5.10 @ 9:37AM|#
    He's a "White Shoe Boy".

    reply to this
    Spur|12.5.10 @ 10:06AM|#
    speaking of butchering:

    "There is still insufficient demand was for bad mortgages,"

    reply to this
    Fannie Mae|12.5.10 @ 12:10PM|#
    Poppycock!!

    reply to this
    Bucky|12.5.10 @ 12:11PM|#
    there does seem to be increased demand for unfunded state and federal worker payroll liabilities.
    that should count for somthin'.

    reply to this
    Tim Cavanaugh|12.5.10 @ 1:05PM|#
    Fixed. Thank you.

    reply to this
    Hugh Akston|12.5.10 @ 3:35AM|#
    Once again Hollywood has set us up for the big fall. All of the cool visions of alien invasion/asteroid/nuclear/zombie apocalypses and the LAMoEs who battle them, and what do we actually get?

    This is the way the world ends
    this is the way the world ends
    this is the way the world ends

    With brainless corpses lurching through the streets groaning about boosting aggregate demand and the US government unable to borrow a nickel to buy a bullet to shoot them with.

    reply to this
    prolefeed|12.5.10 @ 3:37AM|#
    So Robert Reich is either an economic ignoramus, or a lying sack of shit statist who is telling what he knows are lies because he wants to have a really huge government.

    Good to know.

    reply to this
    Ted S.|12.5.10 @ 8:57AM|#
    I don't think it's an either/or proposition.

    reply to this
    Corduroy|12.5.10 @ 9:28AM|#
    I would like to hear the number of economic forecasts that Reich has made which actually came to pass.

    reply to this
    Spartacus|12.5.10 @ 11:33AM|#
    Actually, he's both. We knew that 15 years ago.

    reply to this
    prolefeed|12.5.10 @ 3:39AM|#
    Unless, of course, Mr. Reich is really in favor of insider trading and political bribery.

    Unless he is one of those rare people who think politicians should voluntarily turn down large campaign contributions because those would inevitably affect their decision making, then yes, he is in favor of political bribery.

    reply to this
    Vermont Gun Owner|12.5.10 @ 4:03AM|#
    Reich warns President Obama against repeating the errors of Bill Clinton, who applied some pro-market policies -- the most important of which was briefly retarding the growth of government spending -- following the 1994 Republican congressional win.
    Heaven forbid he rule during the longest peacetime economic expansion in our country's history.

    reply to this
    prolefeed|12.5.10 @ 4:34AM|#
    Threadwinner!

    reply to this
    Tulpa|12.5.10 @ 8:49AM|#
    Bush I and Clinton also raised taxes right before the 90s boom. Does that mean that tax increases lead to prosperity?

    The 90s boom was bound to happen regardless of what the govt did. You had the end of the Cold War, the opening of markets in Eastern Europe and China, the birth of the Internet as we know it...it was a unique confluence of positive events. Reseting federal policy to what it was in 1995 is not going to bring that back, however much we might like that to happen.

    reply to this
    John|12.5.10 @ 9:13AM|#
    Bullshit. The government could have killed the boom in the craddle if it had wanted to. Imagine if Hillarycare and Clinton's energy tax had passed? Also, the boom didn't happen until after 1995 when they dropped the capital gains tax. Go back in look at the economy in 1995, it wasn't that great.

    You are right, the government had nothing to do with making the boom happen. But it sure as hell could have killed it had people like Reich gotten their way.

    reply to this
    Mr Whipple|12.5.10 @ 9:45AM|#
    The Austrians tell us, booms are always followed by busts. That is, when the boom is the result of too much cheap, easy money being flooded into the system. The 90s boom was the same as the 2000s boom; artificially manipulated interest rates, by the man with the God-complex. You know his name.

    reply to this
    John|12.5.10 @ 9:53AM|#
    Booms happen on their own. That is where the Austrians are wrong. It is the nature of capitalism and mass phsycology that sometimes things get over priced and the rising prices become a self fullfilling profecy.

    No amount of sound monetary policy will prevent that. The U.S had horrific booms and busts back before World War I when the world really did live by a gold standard. The explosion of technology in the 1990s would have produced a boom and corresponding bust no matter what. It wasn't Allen Greenspan who convinced people that pets.com and other companies with no cash flow were somehow worth billions. It was the mass psychology of the market. It is just how markets work. But the good news is that the bust is never as bad as the boom was good and after the bust happens and all the bullshit is purged from the system, the real inovations and increases in productivity produce real increases and wealth leaving us better off than we were before.

    reply to this
    Mr Whipple|12.5.10 @ 10:29AM|#
    Yes, but without external interference, those booms are short lived, and mild in comparison.

    The Panics, that I assume you are referring to, were the result of the National Bank Act (1864,1865), and the end of free banking, which enticed banks to purchase Treasuries, and placed a 10% tax on bank notes, and the big one, 1907, was the result of Knickerbocker trying to corner the market on copper. Sort of like what JP Morgan is doing right now.

    Alan Greenspan flooded the market with cheap, easy money, which facilitated Ponzi, or speculative borrowing. Most of that money went into the dot coms. In other words, it added fuel to the fire. The same thing happened with the mortgage boom. Even the Post-Keynesians agree on that.

    But it doesn't really increase wealth. It may increase the paper value of stocks and real estate, but a country is only as wealthy as what it produces. Eventually, all we are left with is devalued capital, and inflation. And real wages never keep pace with real inflation. Palyi showed that fairly accurately in 1961. Perpetual monetary inflation results in a redistribution of wealth from the poor and Middle Class to the wealthy.

    All of the attempts to inject stability into the market, by the Fed and Treasury are doomed to fail. The markets are inherently unstable. Manipulation results in front-running of the Fed, and sends false market signals.

    reply to this
    John|12.5.10 @ 10:57AM|#
    It makes the booms and busts longer. Not sure it makes them anymore severe. The busts of 1837, 1873, and 1893 were incredibly severe. They were every bit as severe as the one in 1932. But amazingly, the economy recovered in just a couple of years with the help of the New Deal.

    reply to this
    Mr Whipple|12.5.10 @ 11:17AM|#
    Why wouldn't it make them more severe? The more money in the market, the higher the value of the paper.

    I take it, you are being sarcastic about the New Deal?

    I agree that the malinvestments need to be flushed out. But that's not what's happening at all. In fact, it's the exact opposite. They are trying to hide them with accounting tricks and dollar devaluation, and, of course, direct purchases, and temporary liquidity programs. If it were up to me, I'd force the zombies to divest, or be liquidated in receivership. Fuck it. They are insolvent.

    reply to this
    John|12.5.10 @ 11:22AM|#
    I was being sarcastic about the New Deal. As far as the busts being more severe, I am not sure why but the busts of the 19th Century were much more severe than those of the 20th Century. The depression of 1873 makes the one in 1932 look like a walk in the park.

    reply to this
    Tim Cavanaugh|12.5.10 @ 1:19PM|#
    I learned all my history from Hollywood, but could it be that there was no Federal Reserve in those days, so Uncle Sugar lacked the ability to monetize the misery?

    Taxes people have been living with for thousands of years. It's the spending that keeps the misery alive.

    Consider the intervention into the real estate market -- which like the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan is still going full-throttle with no exit plan. It has cost taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars. It has also cost bad borrowers a terrible loss in time, money and honor -- just so they can hang onto a debt that they'll never be able to repay. It even costs banks, who have to close a bunch of refis only to see many or most of them redefault a year later.

    Never forget the miracle of government spending: It makes everybody poorer.

    So just to keep the conversation going, I'll say the difference in recoveries is not in tax policy. It's in spending policy. The more the government spends the longer the sorrow lasts.

    reply to this
    nekoxgirl|12.5.10 @ 1:22PM|#
    By worse, do you mean deflation? It would make sense that deflation was worse in prior depressions, since during the Great Depression, the government actively tried to prevent prices from falling. Deflation actually helps the economy recover faster, which is why the Great Depression lasted through the 1930's and led to WWII.

    reply to this
    tkwelge|12.5.10 @ 1:56PM|#
    The Recession of 1873 was a direct result of the economic nationalism of the fiat money era resulting from civil war monetary manipulation.

    reply to this
    JoshINHB|12.5.10 @ 1:56PM|#
    But the good news is that the bust is never as bad as the boom was good

    Except for this bust which has wiped out all the gains of the 00s.

    ...and after the bust happens and all the bullshit is purged from the system, the real inovations and increases in productivity produce real increases and wealth leaving us better off than we were before.

    Assuming that the boom was driven by something more than a credit bubble.

    The OOs boom was entirely debt financed consumption.

    What innovations do you think were created in the 00s that will drive future growth?
    CDSs?
    HELOCs?
    McMansions?
    Platinum public employee pensions?

    reply to this
    Mr. FIFY|12.5.10 @ 10:39AM|#
    "Pro-market policies" = "errors".

    BTW: Is this the same fucktard who wants a maximum wage, or was that one of Clinton's other cronies?

    reply to this
    Ted|12.5.10 @ 4:51AM|#
    My guess is that he would argue "sufficient" demand is the level of total nominal spending (private + public) and investment capable of generating the structurally minimum level of sustainable unemployment (5%-ish, I guess).

    In terms of income inequality, is this like some bizarre Marxian under-consumption theory he is peddling? (Not even very, very old school Keynesians believed such unsophisticated theories).

    On the deficit, we don't know enough about it to know when it is going to be a problem. I suppose you could point to Japan in that we shouldn't care since they are running close to 200% debt/gdp and their debts have been downgraded, yet they are still not facing a fiscal crisis - but I wouldn't chance it on that example. We should deal with it before we are in Japan fuzzy territory of "are the bond vigilantes coming yet??".

    Also, isn't Mr. Reich forgetting controlling long-term deficits via austerity is actually expansionary, if the commitment is credible? The theory is quite simple. The majority of the U.S. population approximate permanent income consumers (I believe it's close to about 66%). If we outlined and pass a credible, long-term budget plan, rational consumers, in anticipation of a lower expected future tax liability, will increase their estimates of their permanent income. This will increase both future and CURRENT consumption.

    In other words, long-term austerity that deals with the structural deficit will actually create "demand" now - just like Reich wants.

    By the way, I'm going to use an error in this blog post to make a point about why AD is really a meaningless concept in practice. Technically, the fiscal stimulus did increase aggregate demand. A component of AD is government spending and since interest rates didn't rise to generate a "crowding out" effect, it likely increased AD. However, it's hard to see why we should care about this or whether this is even an improvement from a welfare perspective. What we should want is increased in private nominal spending and investment. Who cares what AD actually is - we care what spending and investment is going on. Let's be specific about the language and just dispense of the generic term "aggregate demand"

    reply to this
    Tim Cavanaugh|12.5.10 @ 1:41PM|#
    My guess is that he would argue "sufficient" demand is the level of total nominal spending (private + public) and investment capable of generating the structurally minimum level of sustainable unemployment (5%-ish, I guess).

    Combination of public and private spending is too easy to game with stimulus spending, where the dollar spent is presumed to return 100 percent value or more.

    Why not go with Fed Flow of Funds data? Would Reichians be happy if we took the total household net worth at the most recent peak, and said the federal government needs to spend dollar-for-dollar back to that peak? That way the interventionists could give a nice solid number:

    $5.1 trillion.

    That's the difference between household net worth this year -- $53.5 trillion -- and household net worth at the peak of the Bush bubble -- $58.6 trillion.

    People who read Pauly Krugnuts, has he ever put a solid number on what he thinks adequate spending would be?

    Maybe we're all Reichians now. I hope not. Reichians sound like the villains in counterhistorical fanfic.

    reply to this
    IceTrey|12.5.10 @ 5:27AM|#
    Clinton didn't retard spending. The Republican Congress did. I'm not sure but I think the Repubs had enough votes to override his veto so he just went ahead and signed.

    As for Reich, even the most economic ignorant knows the way to a booming economy is low taxes and low regulation.

    reply to this
    JohnD|12.5.10 @ 10:13AM|#
    And all of the Democratic posturing about Bush and the economy was a result of the last 2 years of the Bush presidency being accompanied by a Democratic congress.

    Bush's failure was in NOT VETOING more bills from congress

    reply to this
    Libertarian|12.5.10 @ 6:39AM|#
    Any day that Reich is not dragged through the muck and mud of his own words on H&R is a day wasted.

    reply to this
    C-Dog|12.5.10 @ 8:17AM|#
    What exactly makes lefty shit bags like Reich, Krugman, and Friedman so repulsive? Is it the ignorance of over 100 years of economics? The outright lying? At least the red team has Thomas Sowell, you think you could expect one tolerable pop-econ guy on the left.

    reply to this
    Attorney|12.5.10 @ 9:37AM|#
    It's the lying. Plus the platforms the lib media give them.

    reply to this
    Mr. Mistoffelees|12.5.10 @ 8:43AM|#
    "a tired idea that has now been tested in the economy and at the voting booth, and has failed both times."

    That's a much better track record than libertarianism has at the voting booth.

    reply to this
    John|12.5.10 @ 8:48AM|#
    But not as good as libertarianism has in the economy.

    reply to this
    Mr Mistoffelees|12.5.10 @ 10:11AM|#
    Compare the economy on 1/19/01 with the economy on 1/19/09. Does anything jump right out at you? Be honest.

    reply to this
    John|12.5.10 @ 10:15AM|#
    Compare the economy of 01/01/80 to 01/01/90 when there was an actual easing of taxes and government regulation that occured in the time period, does anything jump out at you? Be honest.

    As far as the 00s, maybe I missed it, but I wasn't aware there was any sort of easing of regulation or government intervention in the economy during that time. I know liberals are not big on book learning, but the books I read tell me that the 00s saw increasing government intervention in the economy via things like SARBOX, politicized fed monitary policy, and the ever increasing reach of FANNIE and FREDDIE.
    Whatever the 00s were, they were sure as hell not an experiment in libertarianism or even a turn towards such like the 1980s were.

    reply to this
    db|12.5.10 @ 10:26AM|#
    What do think that statement is supposed to teach us about libertarianism? That it might have been an acceptable alternative to what actually happened during those years?

    reply to this
    Joshua Corning|12.5.10 @ 2:25PM|#
    Compare the economy on 1/19/01 with the economy on 1/19/09. Does anything jump right out at you? Be honest.

    two towers down and two wars?

    Or are you seriously saying that Bush's tax cuts is the cause of our shitty economy?

    reply to this
    John|12.5.10 @ 8:47AM|#
    Instead of trying to undo the damage he has done over the last two years Obama is working on something really important, stopping school bake sales.

    http://hosted2.ap.org/APDefaul.....bd842f85c2

    I guess now liberals won't be able to say "if only the Pentegon had to have bake sales to buy bombs" anymore. Bakesales are evil. Bombs in contrast, are okay as long as a Democrat is dropping them.

    Can I at least get a hat tip Matt? If Venneman had posted that, you would have given him a tongue bath.

  • ||

    oh shit. Sorry. I have no idea why it did that.

  • The Big Lebowski||

    Lay of the meth bro or will have to have us an intervention, AGAIN! *sigh*

  • Jeffersonian||

    Go slam your hand in a drawer for that.

  • How the hell...||

    did you get that by the junk-groping reason filter?

  • MIchelle O||

    If I were regulating this thread, that wouldn't have happened.

  • Rayne||

    What you gonna do? FLEX at him?

  • Jeffersonian||

    Okay, that made me laugh.

  • Michelle O||

    That was not my intention.

  • Tony||

    Unauthorized laughter is forbidden.

  • Michelle O||

    Exactly. It gets in the way of democracy.

  • Chairman Mao||

    Funny, that's just what my little red book says...

  • Bill "The Thrill" Clinton||

    Wanna see my little black book?

  • Michelle O||

    It is not "funny." Chairman, you disappoint me. We will outdo you yet.

  • Bill "The Thrill" Clinton||

    You want in my little black book too?

  • ||

    Way to ruin the thread, John.

  • Rayne||

    More like a train wreck...

  • cynical||

    TL;DR

  • Tim Cavanaugh||

    I'll take this opportunity to repeat my question for anybody who reads the works of Paul Krugman, the Doctor:

    Has he ever put a solid number on what he thinks adequate spending would be?

  • ||

    Is MORE! a number?

  • Paul Krugman||

    Well, that's a very difficult question. To answer it, we first have to ask: How much would WWIII cost? Now we're in the right ballpark.

  • Ivan||

    In todays dollars of course.

  • ||

    The bumper sticker that inspired this headline has been one of my pet hates for a couple of decades or more. When my Liberal friends ask me why I say "Never mind the question of whether what's wrong with our schools is a lack of money; no possible good can come of encouraging the military to seek alternative funding." And when they ask me what I mean I tell them "Read up on mercenary companies during the Thirty Years War and get back to me."

  • Number 2||

    You expect liberals to read about the Thirty Years War?? Indeed, you expect liberals to even know what the Thirty Years War is? C'mon man!

  • ||

    I know, I know; but I love puncturing their pretensions of intellectualism.

  • Progressive||

    Stopping fat kids from buying cupcakes makes me feel good. Like I count. Like I matter. Like my failure to keep my own kids thin is exonerated, somehow.

    Voting to throw money at public schools because they are failures also makes me feel good. It makes me feel like I've made a difference. It makes me feel like sending my kids to private school is just a valid choice rather than hypocrisy.

    It doesn't matter that neither actually works. IT MAKES ME FEEL GOOD, just like that bumper sticker you hate so much, just like my bumper sticker that says FREE TIBET. And in the end, that is the important thing, damnit! I NEED this, and I need YOU to help pay for it!

    Don't you dare try to take that away from me!

  • Robert||

    Well, I, for one, never paid for my tibet.

  • Bucky||

    Feeeeelings, wo wo wo Feeeeeelings...

  • Brian Sorgatz||

    "The federal government should not be in the business of regulating this kind of activity at the local level."

    Heaven forbid that government schools become centers of authoritarian repression. [eye roll]

  • Progressive||

    I know in my heart this won't work, but man it makes me FEEL so good, I just can't stop myself!

  • Tony||

    And isn't that what's important?

  • Mr. Mistoffelees||

    Nothing about this law stops kids from holding bake sales after school. The only thing they lose is having a captive audience.

    A bake sale in school hours isn't a free market anyway, since the students are not free to leave the area where baked goods are being sold.

  • ||

    None of which makes it the Federal Government's (or Michelle Obama's, for that matter) goddamned business.

  • nekoxgirl||

    Yeah, if chronic bake sales were a problem, I'm sure parents could easily complain to the school board. We're in the middle of an endless recession and the federal government is wasting it's time on this? Why is reality turning into the Onion?

  • Old Salt||

    Maybe Cthulu has a sense of humor?

  • ||

    If school bake sales included chronic in their products, I don't think there'd be any funding problems...

  • Ted H. ||

    Even setting aside whether or not something like this should be done, is this argument against bake sales even logical?

    You cannot gain substantial weight from infrequent consumption of high-calorie foods. You only become really overweight is if you have a persistently poor diet. Bake sales don't happen every day - or every week for that matter. So they can't possibly be a substantial contributor to weight gain among children.

  • ||

    Has he ever put a solid number on what he thinks adequate spending would be?

    I think the basic premise parallels the old saying, "The floggings will continue until morale improves."

  • ||

    Early retirement of the entire B-1B fleet could be one cost-saving measure pursued by a committee of Air Force leaders, according to a report published last week by airforce-magazine.com.

    Those guys should ask Jimmeh Carter how that turned out when he tried it.

  • nekoxgirl||

    It amuses me that the federal government really thinks bake sales (and probably school lunches too) are responsible for childhood obesity. Not what the kids are eating outside of school or the lack of exercise they get at home.

    Personally I really don't care if the parents of this country want to raise a bunch of fat ass kids. It seems better to me that overweight children are the problem, when previously, the opposite had always been the problem.

    If the Democrats really wanted to do something about obesity, they'd have to stop dicking around and just come out of their authoritarian closets. Propose legislation to address the real problem and start prosecuting parents for having overweight children. Sure, most Americans would never vote for a Democrat again, but at least they'd honestly lay out their agenda.

    This legislation is just another example of why we don't need a Department of Education. Content that they've finally run the education part of public education into the ground, now its time to make sure school's can't fund raise either.

  • Robert||

    Come to think of it, they really are chasing their tails, aren't they? They want to do parents a favor by improving what children eat at school when they're outside of home -- by clamping down on what their mothers bake for them??

  • ||

    OT: how are the Seahawks a professional football team? They're so...fucking...terrible. Watching them already get pwned by the Panthers right now is, frankly, embarrassing. I want to like them, but I can't like losers. And they still want ridiculous amounts of money to go see one of their games. The Mariners also suck, but at least I can often go see them for free.

    I guess being owned by Paul Allen means never having to win.

  • ||

    But the fans are all 12th Man!!! and stuff.

    Whatevs, at least the Cougs fans are crying in their apple cups.

  • ||

    And on top of it all, who is the wide receiver kicking Seattle's ass right now? That's right...STEVE SMITH.

    STEVE SMITH RAPE AUGUR HAWK! BUT NOT EAT BECAUSE STEVE PRETTY SURE THAT FEDERAL OFFENSE AND STEVE NOT WANT TO PAY FOR FEDERAL MIGRATORY BIRD HUNTING PERMIT!

  • ||

    STEVE LIKE TIGHT ENDS BEST! ALSO WIDE ENDS! SPORTS-THEMED RAPE METAPHORS, STEVE LIKE BEST OF ALL!

  • Fatty Bolger||

    STEVE SMITH FAVORITE PLAYER JAMES HARRISON! LIKE STEVE HE RAPE QUARTERBACKS!

  • ||

    STEVE RAPE HASSELBECK, SINCE HE NOT ABLE TO GET TOUCHDOWN EVEN WHEN RIGHT ON GOAL LINE! STEVE GIVE YOU SOMETHING TO LIMP ABOUT, MATT!

  • One and the same||

    They've managed to claw back a lead.

  • ||

    Yeah, but then they almost lost their 10 point lead. If there weren't flags on Goodson's run, they'd only be 3 ahead. Still, they're definitely playing better. Maybe they can keep their lead all the way.

  • ||

    Bake sales not only contribute to childhood obesity, they also foster low self-esteem among children who's mothers are cookie-challenged. Not to mention the lack of vegan, gluten-free options, which I'm pretty sure is a Title IX violation.

  • Ted S.||

    I think Title Icks says that there have to be genital quotas in who does the baking.

    The lack of vegan or gluten-free options would violate the Americans with "Disabilities" Act.

  • seguin||

    violate, gentials, Icks, quotas...

    the thread is making me all tingly.

  • ||

    Why I'm a minarchist - We will never, not in a gazillion years, get "the right people" in charge.

    Off to look up how many "limited government" Republicans voted for this piece of crap.

  • nekoxgirl||

    Post the link if you feel like it. I'd be interested to know...but I'm kind of sick and lazy right.

  • ||

    Putting walnuts in chocolate chip cookies should be illegal. Punishable by death.

  • Rayne||

    Grab a Coke and shut the fuck up and have a cookie and a smile!

  • ||

    My mum's bake sale standby was these incredibly rich doughnut cookies. They were buttery, kind of shortbread-y dough, shaped into little mini doughnuts, glazed with icing and topped with sprinkles. Providing superior bake sale items was an excellent way to secure power and influence in the 3rd grade pecking order.

  • Post-Coital Rat||

    From the article:

    Public health groups pushed for the language on fundraisers, which encourages the secretary of Agriculture to allow them only if they are infrequent. The language is broad enough that a president's administration could even ban bake sales, but Secretary Tom Vilsack signaled in a letter to House Education and Labor Committee Chairman George Miller, D-Calif., this week that he does not intend to do that.

    I'm not sure why anyone would be getting worked up over this. Never has an overly-broad or vague law been passed and then used for some purpose than it was otherwise stated. Plus, we have a bureaucrat's word on the matter!

    The USDA has a year to write rules that decide how frequent is infrequent.

    It's a good thing that we keep passing these laws to find out what's in them.

  • Cuddly Soft Balls of Death||

    "Attention all students and faculty: School will now be dismissed for the next 30 minutes. Please report to the main lobby for a special presentation from the school band members who would like to go to Six Flags next Spring. That is all."

  • Robert||

    When I read the description, I thought it was about a consequence of the food safety bill. Not the bombers, though.

  • SM||

    Did any of you even read what was written after the headline, or just the title of the blog post?

    Where does the law say that bake sales are outlawed?

    Where does it say you can't bring your own lunch to school?

    What exactly is your complaint with the GOVERNMENT PROVIDED LUNCHES? So, you're mad that they are choosing what to put in them? What exactly should be put in GOVERNMENT PROVIDED LUNCHES to make you happy?

    And because PUBLIC GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS are making up rules for inside themselves - are you not allowed to go to private schools instead?

    Who here knows someone FORCED to go to a public school and eat the healthy meal? Anyone?

    You guys should really stick to the real problems out there...

  • ||

    If I RANDOMLY capITAlize WORDs, EventuallY someBODY will PAY attenTioN!!!

    The article states pretty plainly that the bill would limit bake sales by giving the Department of Agriculture the power broad enough to do just that. It states that a couple of times in the article incuding this quote " The language is broad enough that a president's administration could even ban bake sales". Maybe it's time for you to read closer you liberal cuntwipe.

  • SM||

    Or it says that it does not regulate bake sales held after schools, weekends, etc...which is when bakesales are held.

    Instead, a government school makes decisions on what it sells to kids.

    What do you care, your kid goes to a private school anyways?

    Hell, i know if schools budgets were increased to give more fatty foods, etc, you people would be having a conniption. Now that they don't allow them? Conniption.

    Again, what do you care about what goes on in the government schools? Just worry about ending them...not their food menus...

  • ||

    Libtard says: "does not regulate bake sales held after schools, weekends, etcwhich is when bakesales are held."

    I'm sorry, but did you attend the Jesse Jackson School of Dumbass? Because not only did you not read the article, you probably never seen, heard, held, a bake sale in your life. Again, the bill allows the Ag Dept. to regulate bake sales that occur during school hours. That's not a Ooga-Booga Kochtopus plot; it says so right there in motherfucking article. The one you didn't obviously read.

  • SM||

    Yes, it does say that someone can't come in and sell crap food in public schools during school hours.

    Bake sales can still be held after school, on weekends, etc.

    Again, what's the complaint?

    How big does the school menu have to be to satisfy you?

    If it served lobster and steak, would you be satisfied? What should the government feed to the children who choose to go there?

    Again, how does this effect your private school?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Did you mouth the words "private school" while you were typing them, SM? Was there hate-based spittle involved?

  • SM||

    Why would i hate private schools?

    I don't have the irrational fear of the "private" that a lot of the people here display of the "public."

    I can see benefits in both...

    ...do you guys answer questions, or are you just told to evade them at all costs?

  • sevo||

    SM|12.6.10 @ 3:43PM|#
    "...do you guys answer questions, or are you just told to evade them at all costs?"
    And when you got answers to your questions, it was obvious there were no "questions".
    Go away, asshole.

  • sevo||

    SM|12.6.10 @ 5:07AM|#
    "Yes, it does say that someone can't come in and sell crap food in public schools during school hours."
    And we're supposed to allows ass-sucks like you to chose what's "crap"?
    Go away, asshole.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Oh, fucking great... SM is *still* here.

  • ||

    Libtard says:
    "Again, what do you care about what goes on in the government schools?"

    I guess in the small gully hole that hold a libtard brain, this is what passes as "smart" questions. Questions so profound to non-libtards because it unsettles their non-libtarded view of the cosmos. Earth-shattering. Man you fucking progressives are fucking hilarious. Is this the best Soros can poop out of the Center of American Progress Spare Intern/Podesta Cumbucket program? Gee, why the fuck would taxpayers have any say with government schools?

    Why do progressives hate carbs and also hate the right of people to determine what their taxpayer-funded government schools do?

  • SM||

    If they already have your money, what do you care if they spend it on apples, or candy apples?

    What does this bill have to do with your private school anyways?

  • seguin||

    WTF? Really?

  • sevo||

    SM|12.6.10 @ 5:09AM|#
    Go away, asshole.

  • ||

    Isn't it a remarkable coincidence that National Public Radio (NPR) ran a story this very morning about the extreme noise pollution associated with the B-1B in South Dakota?

    Why one might almost believe that this "entirely independent" "not sufficiently funded by the government" "news" agency was providing social positioning through the distribution of administration-friendly media.

  • ||

    Wow. That is quite a coincedence.

    The B-1B has been flying for over 20 years and now someone runs a story about noise pollution?

  • 8||

    provides more meals at school for needy kids, including dinner

    giving the fat little fucks more food to stamp out hunger and end obesity, somehow.

  • CorporateDrone||

    Dinner? Now I gotta pay for their effin' dinner? If their parents weren't so damned obsessed with flat-screen TVs, HD cable packages, and smart phones, maybe they'd be able to pay for their own kids' meals.

  • Bucky||

    and you should see the waste!

  • ||

    President and First Lady Obama are truly the most "brilliant" couple to ever have lived in our White House.

    Save us, save our children!

  • ||

    Shouldn't Michelle just feed us all healthy meals? We all know we make bad choices....and it will help cut health care costs...

  • SM||

    I just want to make sure, everyone in libertopia not close to their contracted with hospital who shows up to a different one without a pile of cash dies, right?

  • cynical||

    Only dumbshits like you, and only because even the doctors can't stand you.

  • sevo||

    SM|12.6.10 @ 5:09AM|#
    Go away, asshole.

  • ||

    You know, comparing the bodies of the student bodies of Newport Harbor High vs. Estancia High across town, it looks like the best way to cut down on obesity rates would be to repeal the Immigration Act of 1965.

    Just sayin'.

  • ||

    I did not read every response, but has anyone bothered to point out that bake sales are only banned during the school day? You can still have bake sales before school and after school. As far as I am concerned, during the school day I want my kids focused on lessons, not on baked goods.

  • ||

    Well, maybe you could have your local fucking school board pass a local fucking rule and your fucking kids could focus, while the rest of us could do as we see fit?

  • ||

    As a veteran fundraiser & brownie baker, let me say that in-school sales raise the biggest money and offer the best visibility for whatever cause you're fundraising for (school spirit & all that). The kids seem to like in-school sales too -- a bit of fun during a routine day.

    Instead of banning in-school bake sales, how about mandating recess and after-school sports? Many schools cut those to focus on academics or to save money.

  • ||

    The way things are going, young student entrepreneurs will be dealing Ring Dings and Devil Dogs at greatly inflated prices at lunch and getting suspended or expelled for "nutritional crimes"!

  • ||

    Whats's the use of power if you can't make people do what they don't want?

  • ||

    Nanny state policies can always be traced back to people who shouldn't be allowed to think about or affect anything outside of their own homes. A good example is an article I read in my local paper about a woman who basically said "I came to the Democrat side because they care more about school lunches. All I care about is making sure kids get free school lunches"

    Such people are great with details and logistics, but it's a travesty when they start to "think big" because they are actually incapable of thinking big. They'd vote for the party that promises to put us all in shackles and flea-ridden bunkers as long as the children all get a vegetable option with their rancid gruel.

  • Bucky||

    damn, what about the freaking bedbugs! talk about straining the fat and swallerin a whole bundt cake with buttercream icing! we have a bed bug epidemic!

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