Inept Vs. Insane: Seeing The Elephant

Seeing The Elephant301Sightings often begin with excitement and high ideals, only to be disappointing or disenchanting.  The high excitement followed by the low frustrations are what epitomize the elephant as something most wanted to “see” but few would have ever wanted to “see” again.

-Wikipedia

Who or what is the elephant here in the thirteenth year of the 21st Century? Is he the evangelical elephant? The Tea Party elephant? The libertarian elephant? Can a RINO also be an elephant? He most certainly is not the pachyderm we knew in the good old days, if such days ever truly existed. Even Grand Old Poobahs like George Will and Charles Krauthammer shake their heads in disbelief as the party sinks deeper into the dark pool of schizophrenia.

We outsiders didn’t think the party could get any weirder than those heady days when Newt Gingrich and his Young Turks roamed the halls of Congress carrying Clinton voodoo dolls, searching for scandals in broom closets and generally gumming up the grinding gears of government. Even when the stories about Wild Bill’s extra-executive exploits proved to be true, their magic wasn’t strong enough to push him out of the Oral Office.

It was hard to believe they hadn’t learned some kind of lesson from that experience, but when Barack Obama ascended to the presidency they just went to pieces. He’s a Marxist Muslim Manchurian from darkest Kenya! He plans to burn the constitution and install himself as President-for-life! He eats dogs! …The list goes on. Alcoa stocks hit new highs as the faithful covered their heads and windowsills with tinfoil to silence the voices from the UN satellites and stealth drones.

And so they are stuck in a massive identity crisis. There are Indian Elephants (Nikki Haley, Bobby Jindal), African Elephants ( Condi Rice, Allen West, Herman Cain), Pink Elephants (they’ve been boarded up in a log cabin), but most are White Elephants, the kind you wrap up and give away at Christmas to get them out of your house.

And it’s sad, because they have some legitimate issues. We are spending our way into oblivion. The Democrats are dedicated control freaks with their own crazy nutso ideas about how we should live our lives. But as long as the GOP nominates borderline morons who can’t  stop pontificating about the rights of rape-babies, trying to do end runs around voting rights, push equal time for creationists in public schools, stonewall immigration reforms and reasonable rights for gay citizens, and lecture us about entitlements while they skim subsidies and make sweetheart deals with their own crony capitalists, they’ll never get my vote.

And I’m betting they won’t get many others as well. Can they overcome their egos and return to the majority party? In this dysfunctional age anything is possible. The Democrats are more than able to tank the economy or land us in another horrific war. But even if the Schizopublicans manage to win the next round, their own psychotic agenda will doom them to a short and ugly reign.

INSANITY: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.   -Al Einstein

 

 

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32 Responses to Inept Vs. Insane: Seeing The Elephant

  1. San French says:

    We have seen the elephant and it is us.

  2. rl crabb says:

    The most frustrating thing about our dysfunctional political system is the lack of viable alternatives. You’d think that the vast number of independents who would love to see “progress” without all the “isms” might find a happy medium somewhere else. Instead, we get the fringe of the fringe.
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/10/27/fire-the-crackpots-of-congress-and-replace-them-with-new-crackpots.html

  3. Chris Peterson says:

    The elephants are asses and visa versa; ain’t no difference between the two.

    The “grand bargain” which opened the shuttered government doors was Obama promising the repubs that he would sign an entitlement reform bill with the aid of his Congressional leaders if Boehner would allow a vote. Therefore, come next election, the conservatives will have their day that will carry them into office for yet another round of “Smile as you screw the average Joe”, as they whittle away at the $59 billion in citizen welfare, (plus Social Security benefits), while leaving the $97 billion in corporate welfare, and hundreds of billions in tax breaks untouched. (Never mind the hundreds of billions in tax breaks for the wealthy, and an even larger amount in tax-free offshore accounts which puts even more of the burden on us working slobs.)

    Both sides are complicit; any perceived difference is merely to fleece us of any voluntary funds we wish to contribute.

    Ah well.

    (In deference to Greg, I say this as a registered independent who has belonged to neither party for the last 30 odd years.)

  4. Ben Emery says:

    Bob,
    What we are experiencing is the unraveling of the US economy via US government via Republican/ Democratic Party’s via Big Industry via WTO/ NAFTA/ CAFTA/ SHAFTA and soon to be TPP agreements. The house of cards is coming down and I am afraid it isn’t going to be pretty or easy but I believe it is going to produce a new operating paradigm globally. My hope it is bio regionalism or decentralized self determination with fair trade and cooperative economics as the model of sustaining a functional economic system. As Steve Frisch talks about a great deal is eliminating externalities for industry. Our current government covers or ignores the external costs of doing business making our predatory form of capitalism extremely profitable while bankrupting the state. When external costs are absorbed into the budgets of big industry basically profits will fall to a crawl. This then begets a way less profitable industry meaning less money to invest in government favoritism, which in turn will produce more people representative government. As this occur it is basically eliminating big business and moving the markets to more manageable medium and small businesses that will be more accountable to the regional costumer thus making their business practices more about making a living not a killing.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBw6KvU51BE

    • Michael Anderson says:

      Ben, markets are fine, as long as they are not corrupted. I think all of the blog commenters are good with this. Even Todd, GG, Rebane, and many others. The disconnect seems to be at another base, having to do with entitlements.

      My contention is that the reason the Republicans are feeling so much political pain at the moment is because they don’t have good entitlement solutions. They want to eliminate them, or reduce them by percentage, when the best process would be to review them individually and save what works and can what doesn’t. But that will never happen w/o bipartisanship, and so we go down this really un-constructive road.

      It’s a tragedy, worthy of a play. Someone should write it, along the lines of “Mother Courage.” It’s a 100 Years War. Such a project interests me.

      M.

      • rlcrabb says:

        I think Ben wants something more along the lines of “Marat/Sade”…

        Marat always ready to stifle every scheme
        of the sons of the ass-licking dying regime
        We’ve got new generals, our leaders are new
        They sit and they argue and all that they do
        is sell their own colleagues and ride upon their backs
        and jail them, and break them, and give them all the axe

        Marat we’re poor, and the poor stay poor
        Marat please don’t make us wait anymore
        We want our rights and we don’t care how
        We want our revolution Now!

        • Steve Frisch says:

          You see Marat how we advance
          and now we begin to thin our own ranks
          Just as you told us so must above all
          the weak and incapable go to the wall
          But then it is Danton bound and trussed
          who’s head is ready to roll in the dust
          The Jacobins now under Robespierre’s lead
          pursue the rich and their boundless greed
          But however many of them we kill
          they won’t let go of their realm until
          with their gold and their iron they lead our nation
          happily toward restoration
          Look Marat how they prosper and grow
          while even Robespierre is brought low
          Also perished has Jacques Roux
          who’s word in these circles was taboo
          Marat to comfort you let us now state
          that another great again is holding our fate
          With fanfare and drum rolls and looking smart
          a living example of well earned reward
          here comes Bonaparte from Corsica
          like you or is it Sardinia
          He’s promised us peace eternal
          and given us work in his arsenal
          and in honor of the our revolution
          he calls himself emperor Napoleon

      • Ben Emery says:

        Michael,
        What the Republicans are doing is to hand over control to big industry with no social safety nets for the average person. The Democrats are moving slower but are still handing over control to big industry and are trying to put in those safety nets.

        If the average person had representation big industry wouldn’t have the ability to exploit and create predatory markets where they make the rules in favor of themselves over the people.

        I think the real debate that seems to get lost in all of the symptoms of that debate is the governments role is to set the rules/ regulate markets so we don’t become victims to the small few that will eventually control each industry if laissez-faire were actually allowed to take place. Instead of laissez-faire we now have industry using government as a tool to secure their power and profits. Make the accumulation of dynastic wealth impossible and we do not get the latter scenario.

    • Steve Frisch says:

      Thanks for posting the Kahn Academy video, I think it demonstrates the theory behind how we are paying for the two cents of crap for every two cents of profit. Nice job describing my economic philosophy as well Ben, with two caveats: first, I do not assume that in such a theory business would be deprived of profit, and second there must be a mechanism for compensating for positive externalities as well.

      Lets say I am a rancher and I own a parcel of land that is 1000 acres. 500 acres is dry pasture and 500 acres is wetland. That 1000 acres supports approximately 100 animal units per month (AUM) (intentionally high for most Sierra landscapes to make the math easy) of cattle.

      I can graze that land intensively and support 120 AUM but I externalize some of my costs of production when I put sediment into the streams and less water stays on the land later in the year, meaning less water downstream and more storage necessary to ensure downstream water supply, and more treatment to make the water potable.

      Or I can avoid grazing in the wetlands in the spring but I may only be a able to support 80 AUM, to avoid downstream costs, losing 20% of my AUM. I may actually avoid more than 20% of the cost downstream. I should get compensated for the total avoided costs I leverage. So I may only be able to produce 80 AUM but those 80 AUM should command at least a 20% premium, making ‘good’ production price competitive with ‘bad’ production. (I know several ranchers who are doing this right now).

      The science of calculating external costs may sound like a difficult thing to do, but we are starting to do it with hundreds if not thousands of commodities. This is the “Cradle to Cradle” manufacturing cycle that Will McDonough talked about in his book of the same title. A classic example would be Patagonia’s ‘common threads’ partnership which is developing the tool to calculate the social cost of textile production.

      I would argue as well that this type of cost accounting could be done in the private sector; actually most of the manufacturing sector is already calculating all of their supply chain costs and most of their external costs (if they did not they would probably not still be in business). This approach would reduce regulation and reduce the size and scope of government (although it would clearly need to have some oversight to avoid what Michael described as ‘corrupted markets’.)

      We are charging for ‘social cost’ already, we are just doing it proscriptively through regulations, or unconsciously through government services, rather than proactively through process design.

  5. Steve Frisch says:

    Bob, I would posit that if one want to avoid the French Revolution one must eventually evolve. Economies evolve or they collapse. We are already in a managed market economy and the better we mange it the less likely the Revolution.

    The only other option is to hurry the Revolution, and hurry a new regime replacing the ancient regime, which no American seems to be prone to do.

    • rl crabb says:

      Steve, if I was Jeff Pelline I’d make some wiseass crack about you saying “the better we mange it”, but being the classy guy I am I won’t stoop to the spelling bee level.

      • Steve Frisch says:

        Shoot Bob, I am just trying to get up the energy to go out and shovel snow..imagine my pleasure at seeing a Marat/Sade dialogue in the morning to boost my adrenalin.

        • rl crabb says:

          How much of the white stuff did you get last night? I was happy to see the rain us “downstreamers” got, because I was almost ready to start watering again before my plants withered any more.
          And speaking of downstream, I appreciate the efforts to keep cow poop out of my drinking water. I’m certainly not in favor of deregulating everything to the will of the free market. Markets are evolving, and as much as some people want to see corporate America disappear into a patchwork of little businesses and ten acre organic farms, it ain’t gonna happen in this brave new global economy.
          The press is making a lot of hay over Jerry Brown and his “California Miracle”, but how hard is it to balance a budget when you have every branch of the government controlled by one party? When you look at that red/blue map it becomes obvious that while that thin strip of land on the coast may have all the money and the population to rule the state, the majority of California’s geography lives in a different world. Every day I see some new effort from the legislature to further separate the peons from whatever profits they can make in this environment, and then there is their desire to achieve social justice. To his credit, the Guv vetoed the bill to allow aliens to sit in judgement over citizens, but he did sign the ridiculous “gender blender bathroom” bill. While I sympathize with the plight of confused children, this bill will open the state’s schools to a hoard of unintended consequences and repeal will no doubt be on the ballot next year.
          There’s a lot of chortling coming from the left over the symbolic efforts by some counties to secede from California, but there are valid complaints behind it.

          Back from the shadows again
          Back where an Indian’s your friend
          Where the vegetables are green
          and you can pee right into the stream
          (and that’s important)
          Yes, we’re back from the shadows again

          -Firesign Theatre

          • Steve Frisch says:

            We received about 6 inches in downtown Truckee, which probably means closer to a foot at the summits. A good start.

            Perhaps we could have a fuller discussion about the State of Jefferson movement because I agree with you that there is some rational basis for a desire to divide the state, even though I know it will never happen, so we better address the cause rather than chortle over symptom.

          • rl crabb says:

            Secession: It’s not just for backwoods hillbillies anymore…
            http://www.salon.com/2013/10/28/silicon_valley_dreams_of_secession/

          • Ben Emery says:

            As I said we are in the middle of an unraveling. We have two institution so large they have made a deal with the devil to secure the seat at the power table. In the process they have alienated and disillusioned about half the voting populace to the extent that congressional seats are gerrymandered to a small few flipping of the seats and presidential races are basically fighting for about 3% of the vote because the other 97% is spoken for through partisanship. In all honestly I think Obama might have had the biggest voter turnout win in modern history if not all American history in 2008. I think voter turnout was in the high 60% range or maybe cracked 70%. Even then with a 50% plus one scenario he was elected with roughly 35% of the of the votes from those who are officially registered. It was a reform vote of the Bush years and sadly Obama has continued most of the worst policies and even expanded on a few.

          • Steve Frisch says:

            When one is a hammer everything looks like a nail.

          • Michael Anderson says:

            RL,

            Great article find at Salon. This is exactly what I was talking about when I took my suicide vest into Rebane’s Ruminations last week and blew myself up to remove his site from my prefrontal cortex.

            I grew up in Santa Clara Valley, before Silicon Valley existed. My dad, a Navy officer on the USS Midway, noticed that each time they docked in Alameda in the mid-1950s, the weather was beautiful, the land was cheap, the people were wonderful, and there was a burgeoning technology base. He went on to become an executive in the communications division at Sylvania, a large military contractor for certain product sectors.

            When I was growing up in the 1960s, my dad spent a lot of time in Washington D.C., delivering proposals to the folks in the Pentagon regarding new communications technologies that Sylvania had invented. I only went to D.C. once with him, and just saw the Pentagon from the outside. Back then the Cold War was still raging, and even though my dad had a pretty high security clearance, his kid still couldn’t be in the building.

            That all being said, and having grown up in Los Altos Hills, I was privy to an amazing accumulation of wealth and riches that still boggles my mind. Just one example, a close friend in high school’s dad was the founder of Silicon Graphics. And just so we’re all on the same page, my family was in the “poor folk” neighborhood, we had a shitty California ranch-style with 25 apricot trees and an adequate vegetable garden.

            So, back to Silicon Valley, these people couldn’t care less about what is happening in Washington D.C., or the rest of the country for that matter. And silly George Rebane, who claims to have a connection to Sand Hill Road, is utterly clueless about where the Google-heads, and the Facebook-heads, and the Twitter-heads, are heading. Seriously, the man is utterly without any kind of crystal ball that makes any sense whatsoever when predicting the future. The Singularity is a nice wet dream, but it ain’t gonna happen.

            The people in the San Francisco Bay Area are completely done with the Tea Party, Louisiana, Alabama, Florida, Washington D.C., West Virginia, Virginia, the idiot parts of Texas, and all the rest. They are working with people in other places on the planet who are equally done with their own stupid internal politics, forward-thinking places like Russia, China, Europe, Africa, and South America.

            The global communications network is changing everything. The Internet has made nation states obsolete. George Rebane holds on to an old model that in 20 years will be just an exhibit in a history museum, and his idea of natural law and the first 10 Amendments to the Constitution being the only ones that are worthwhile is so completely without merit that I am surprised that I have to even write these words to describe the situation.

            I was in the Bay Area last weekend celebrating my dad’s 80th birthday. Lots of folks from all over the country were there, and some of us ended up the next day (Sunday) at the Palo Alto Baylands, reviewing what the local folks are doing to restore the San Francisco Bay.

            The Baylands is right next to the Palo Alto GA airport (KPAO), which services all of the Silicon Valley zillionaires, as well as the non-zillionaires for that matter. Anyway, just above KPAO is where all of the mega-ships coming from all over the world make their final left turn on final approach, at about 3,000 feet. We saw huge 747s, mostly 777s, Airbuses, and then at noon, a ginormous Lufthansa A380 coming in after a 14 hour flight over the north pole from Frankfurt.

            I said to my young boys: “San Francisco is one of the most important economic and cultural hubs in the world. Do you see these huge airplanes coming in above us every couple of minutes? Those are people arriving from Japan, many cities in Europe, Australia, Korea, Africa, the Middle East, and South America.”

            Why are they coming to SF? Because there is a huge amount of money and art there. San Fransisco and the Bay Area is one of the world’s great metropolitan areas, like London, New York City, Chicago, Shanghai, Sao Paulo, Seoul, Moscow, Karachi, Tokyo, and so many others. They are almost nation states themselves.

            The Great Divide that people like George Rebane describe is completely inaccurate. He is with the Siskiyou County tin hats who think that the California legislature will allow them to leave, despite their onerous need for gov’t dollars to just keep the roads from falling apart since there are so few humans who pay taxes up there. Won’t happen any time soon, that’s for sure.

            To wrap up, and going back to the article you cited Bob, Siskiyou County will never secede from California, but the Silicon Valley has already done so. The people in Palo Alto could give a rats ass about what’s happening in Vallejo or Tracy, and they are very vocal about their lack of concern about anything regional or having to do with silly local turf wars. They are particularly amused by the Obamacare rollout, and could care less about what is happening to states who did not choose to set up their own exchanges. They support single payer programs, and they are not socialists.

            It’s stomping time, and George should gird his loins. His ideals are about to get permanently quashed.

            Michael A.

          • Greg Goodknight says:

            Shoes for Industry, compadre!

            The current Obamacare debacle is a full employment act for late night comics, their writing staff and cartoonists.

    • Chris Peterson says:

      I’ll admit that you’re way beyond me as far as the theories of market evaluations and management is concerned, but from a layman’s perspective; subsidies started out as a way of keeping the economy on an even keel by storing product in heavy years and releasing it in years when the yields were light, thereby protecting markets, and consumers, from themselves.

      Then it morphed into a program that paid farmers to not grow above certain limits, in an effort to achieve the same goal, sans the storage. Once industrialized farming made that an impossible task, the government decided to guarantee a set price for everything grown, and pursue other markets in impoverished nations, actually loaning them the money to buy those goods, as in the the great USSR grain deal of the 70’s.

      Somewhere along the line, the makers of hard goods cried foul and the system expanded into manufacturing as well, and to keep up, trade acts like NAFTA were spawned to force foreign markets to accept our goods in exchange for the funds to buy them, (most of the reason for the immigration from our southern neighbors).

      The whole notion that we are “managing” our markets has become the longest running joke in Washington. “Let the market decide” my ass. The market runs the government program originally created to control it, and labor, which was long held as a near equal to capital, has become subservient to those demands.

      So again, from a layman’s perspective; it ain’t workin’, and until we see the scale tipped back to a more even distribution of compensation for labor, and way less taxpayer money to support the monolithic entities the morphed system has created, we are moving ever closer to the revolutionary edge. Hopefully we will once again see the rise of a figure such as Teddy Roosevelt who will sweep into office through the democratic will of the people before it gets too out of hand.

      Democracy is an act of continual, peaceful revolution, if allowed to function as designed.

      • Steve Frisch says:

        Here is to Democracy being a continual peaceful revolution.

        I could not agree with you more that market control by government has not worked well, the question is what is the alternative if we do not want to go to laissez faire capitalism, which our society has roundly rejected.

        I believe the answer lies in internalizing the costs of production so there is less regulation and smaller government, but creating a market place that actually punishes the bad and rewards the good. To do that there has to be some monitoring and evaluation system. If the private sector can do that, more power to them, if they can’t occasionally government has to step in to enforce the rules.

        This would be much simpler than trying to proscribe the bad and manage everything. Money simply is not ‘manageable’, and to a great extent has to be allowed to rise and fall on its own.

        Please don’t interpret that as some ringing endorsement of libertarianism, because its not. Government still has a huge role in managing stability.

        • Chris Peterson says:

          When our forefathers came to the new world, we cast off the system whereby the wealthy dictated the course of economic distribution through their established position, and became a society where 80% of citizens made a living feeding each other and providing goods and services. Now, we have gone (nearly) full circle, back to that market which is owned and operated by the few who, in turn, decide through money/influence, how or economic engine operates.

          The root cause of this departure from our democratic ideals? We, the people, no longer are the ones who pay for our representative’s service. We have been usurped by a fundamental departure from the premise that the government is answerable to only the will of the people. Two major changes have brought this about; money is speech, and corporations are people. The SCOTUS Citizen’s decision, and now McCutcheon, exacerbate the first, and pure graft allows the second.

          If these two fundamental flaws are not corrected, there is no parity in any decision as far as a free and open market are concerned. You can argue the finer points of a flawed market system from the standpoint of government management til the cows come home, but you cannot effect any change in our present course until, once again, decisions are made for the good of our society as a whole, as opposed to the will of those who outwardly bribe our elected officials.

          The preamble of our Constitution is clear and compelling, and an implicit guide to calmer waters. Until we return to those basic principles, all other arguments are only rearranging the deck chairs on a sinking ship. There’s a cancer growing in our country and merely changing our socks isn’t going to cure it.

          Government isn’t just necessary; it’s our only hope of salvation IF we can take it back from the dictate of the few who use it for their own purposes, as in the beginning.

          • Steve Frisch says:

            Well I could not agree with you more about the need to change how we define corporations and political speech.

          • Chris Peterson says:

            And your ability to grasp the highly complex mechanics of our market system will be an invaluable asset to our society, once we regain control of the ship of state. And I’m more than sure that your knowledge is anything but myopic in it’s scope, which is reassuring to citizens like myself, who know a little about some things, but are master of none.

            Just don’t get too far ahead of us. lol

  6. Ben Emery says:

    As the regulatory system works presently it is tool to eliminate competition and legalize/ limit liability for negative externalities.

    Health Care is a huge external cost to many of the pollutions, exploitation of our natural environment, and military actions since WWII. Presently in the US the government be it state or federal cover nearly 60% of health care costs for the US with a patchwork series of programs covering the highest risk pools of the elderly, poor, disabled, military, and veterans. If we were to put an import or extraction fee on carbon/ fossil fuels coming into the US to fund a single payer along with a fee on all transactions done on Wall St speculation, which accounts for tens of millions of transactions a day worth tens of billions if not trillions of dollars. Single Payer is a streamlined health care insurance system eliminating all of the insane executive compensation, share holder dividends, lobbyists, advertising, and all the infrastructure that supports these off the top overhead costs.

    • Chris Peterson says:

      Bernie Sanders is finally getting a bill before the Connecticut legislature, which he has been trying to do for over thirty years, and there’s a good chance that the public option could be adopted in that state in the coming months.

      Many of us who were in opposition to the ACA when it was announced were so inclined because it wasn’t single payer, not, as reported, because we were against a health care law.

      Go Bernie!

      • Ben Emery says:

        Bernie Sanders is one of my current day political heroes. Correct on so many issues, anti corruption, anti war, anti corporate personhood, pro democracy, pro labor, pro environment, and the list goes on. Very few on the inside of the big two political parties could have such strong positions as a Bernie Sanders.

        His move towards amending the US Constitution to end corporate personhood.
        http://economyincrisis.org/content/sanders-introduces-amendment-to-end-corporate-personhood

        ps he represents Vermont and we all wish we had a Senator like Bernie Sanders. In areas that goes 60% plus for Republican candidate will go 65% plus for Bernie Sanders who is an independent.

  7. Ben Emery says:

    Steve,
    Maybe you can expand on how capitalism or our current form of it doesn’t factor or calculate the loss of ecosystems, natural resources, and the negative affects of consumption at terminal ratios into our practicing economic system. How removing thousands of years old growth, rain forests, or totally disrupting an entire region that has developed over millions of years has much further reaching consequences than virtually all of us can comprehend. I have a class to get to kind of on this subject, Natural Disasters and how to mitigate future “disasters” by responsible development.

    Here are some good definitions from OECD

    Definition:
    Environmental externalities refer to the economic concept of uncompensated environmental effects of production and consumption that affect consumer utility and enterprise cost outside the market mechanism.

    As a consequence of negative externalities, private costs of production tend to be lower than its “social” cost. It is the aim of the “polluter/user-pays” principle to prompt households and enterprises to internalise externalities in their plans and budgets.

    Polluter-Pays Principle
    The polluter-pays principle is the principle according to which the polluter should bear the cost of measures to reduce pollution according to the extent of either the damage done to society or the exceeding of an acceptable level (standard) of pollution.

    • Chris Peterson says:

      Wow. Those theories would pretty much shut down all fracking operations, not to mention making coal a minimal profit product, if profitable at all.
      I guess that’s why they will never be put into practice for the foreseeable future.

      It’s a sad state of affairs when logic is counter to economic well-being.

  8. Robert Lovejoy says:

    Good discussion. First and foremost, Keynesian economic theory has been so totally altered and misrepresented that it is not even recognizable in its current form. Keynes strongly stated in good times the government should save up a bundle of cash, pay down the deceit and plan for a rainy day. When the rainy days come, the government would open its storehouse to get through the lean times. In reality, in good times our Government runs up massive deficits and even more in bad times. Do we have a spending problem or are we like Michael Jackson paying any price for “the milk”?

    Second, the Republicans played the shutdown quite nicely. Not too many will remember the 18 days of non essential services cut, but many will remember they fought against the ACA when the whole thing starts to unravel and the chickens come home to roost. Its good to be on the record. Fact #1 is that more people have lost their health insurance than people who have received health care through the exchanges since ACA launched. Fact #2 is of the 700,000 citizens our Government says have obtained insurance through the so called Obama-care, half of that number where put directly on Medicaid. It makes sense since the poor and uninsured would sign up for the free stuff first. Although just a primarily figure, it bodes poorly for a health system depends upon young healthy citizens to sign up to pay for the Medicaid recipients.

    As the majority of people find out their insurance bills are going to increase, their co-pays and deductibles are going to skyrocket and their current individual coverage is being cancelled, the Republicans will come out smelling rather nicely.

    It is important to remember that only 25% of the population are either uninsured, on Medicare/Medicaid, or buy individual insurance policies. I don’t believe there will be enough young healthy citizens who would pay $200/month versus a $95/year penalty. The cruel math does not add up.

    • Michael Anderson says:

      Robert,

      The whole strategy is to get to single payer. I will grant you that the people who hate the black man will continue to mark up points, but in the end they will fail. PPACA is a whole lot more than just the “individual mandate” or state vs. fed. exchanges. There are large parts of the bill that will be looking at cost reduction, once everyone is “in.”

      It’s ALL about reducing costs, and PPACA is all we have at the moment. Am I sad about someone in a state that sued the federal gov’t about implementing PPACA who now can’t get services? No, of course not. Let them rot in hell. These people are in states that are no longer a part of the United States, who have always taken more than they delivered, and where really bad-mannered about just about everything.

      Fuck ’em.

      M.

  9. Michael Anderson says:

    The sky is falling, the sky is falling…ummm, no it’s not.

    The Nevada County economy is getting better every day. Just walk around and feel it. I know it’s slower than it should be, but all indicators are moving higher.

    When will the Chicken Littles finally call it day and stop trying to bring things down, in order to prove that they were right? My guess is never, which is why we should ignore them and just go about our business. Carry on, fair nation.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/25/opinion/krugman-addicted-to-the-apocalypse.html?partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

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