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Gruberment Science

This is laughable.  But not unexpected.

 

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Trump and the GOP’s really bad week

The party of limited government and fiscal responsibility strikes again, outspending its demonrat predecessors, making Chuck Schumer of all people happy.  “We were able to accomplish more in the minority” Chucky states, ….in impoverishing future generations I conclude.  Take a bow, Chuck.

I have to laugh at the genius Vox Day making excuses for Trump.  “One step back, and two steps forwards”.   What a joke….more like 3 steps back, one step foward.  The one thing Vox has correctly identified is that it is no accident Trump is surrounded by his enemies on all sides and they will not quit until he is impeached.  Trump rolling over and signing this omnibus bill  has signaled and initiated that end.  But his constituency is not going to abandon the Trump train, as Vox might think.   However, there will be far less than enthusiasm and far more cynicism at the prospects Trump represents for draining the swamp.

Unless the economy shows improvement without the concomitant inflation, I predict this will doom the GOP in the midterms, and will make Trump a one term president, if he is ever able to finish off his first term.  Just as well, he has failed, and continues to fail to drain the swamp.

To top it off, Trump selects John Bolton of all neocons, to be his national security adviser.  Talk about colossal stupidity.  I really doubt this is 3 dimensional chess we are seeing played out here.

The only thing I take solace in, is Trump is not Hillary.

Good Grief.

Tariffs and the Steel industry

In general I agree with all of the theoretical and simplistic arguments free traders advocate for eliminating tariffs.  I’ve read all the arguments of marginal cost and the advantages of specialization.   The Bastiat arguments of both seen and unseen consequences.  Those arguments have basically won the day.  But I still find many unanswered holes in these arguments.  I have great respect for people like Thomas DiLorenzo, Walter Block, Walter Williams, and Thomas Sowell, but not one of them ever deals with the questions which come to my mind.

My first question.  Are tariffs preferable to both income taxes and corporate taxes as the means of raising revenue for funding the operating costs of government.  I argue without a doubt, they are.   For every dollar of revenue lost due to a reduction in income taxes, I have no problem increasing tariffs as a consumption tax to compensate.  The American consumer will still pay the tax, only it will encourage intellectual property, manufacturing,  manufacturing IP, and jobs to remain in the United States, rather than losing it to overseas.  Tariffs can also be used as a tool to prevent us exporting environmental issues abroad.  And note this is really important….once manufacturing moves overseas, it is really hard to get it back.

The second question.  Why is not the “total cost” of free trade ever considered in the marginal cost arguments promulgated by the economists to the general public?  For instance, by trading with China, all we do is offshore our pollution issues.  There is no costs to this?   This, and a permanent loss of manufacturing IP makes the calculus of “free trade” far more complex, and is one of those “unseen” things Walter Williams conveniently ignores.   Also, there are quality issued at hand “e.g. Chinese drywall“.  Manufacuring IP that is lost and/or not advanced.  All of these things are a cost.

This brings me to Trump’s steel tariff threat.  We are assured by many that this has nothing to do with national security.  I do not possibly see how this is not a national security issue.   Walter Block argues we don’t need tariffs to protect the steel industry for national defense:

“But we hardly need an economically unjustified tariff to attain that goal. Instead, the government in its largesse could subsidize this industry. Not to make steel; ……All that would be needed would be a large empty steel mill, sufficient raw materials as inputs, and a very small crew to keep the place well-oiled.”………To picture Block’s argument, imagine the gruberment propping these bad boys up 100 years later.

For an economic argument, I am surprised at how shallow this line of thinking is.  So his answer is to have the government come in and keep a few furnaces well oiled until the day we need to up domestic production for military needs?  How shallow is that?

The argument smacks of an idealist, and someone who is unfamiliar with manufacturing technology and/or manufacturing IP.  By not investing in manufacturing IP, the manufacturing of  steel like any other technology will wither and die on the vine.  Advances in manufacturing IP done by other countries continue to push the price of steel downward.  This “cost” of not competing in this industry is lost in the US.  This is what Walter Block desires? …… His answer, it won’t matter because the next war (nuclear) will be over in 5 minutes?  Please.  For an intellectual, I find his line of thinking very shallow.

I do not want to shutdown trade with our steel trading partners (such as Canada), but I think the business environment needs to be re-arranged so it is more attractive to produce technologies such as steel domestically, and not let industries (energy, food, and steel) wither on the vine and die out.  I am also not a fan of letting politicians make crony capitalists decisions that favor one industry over another.  Tariffs should be flat, and blind on all products as a “fee” to entering the US economy.  I have no problem granting individual nations “friendly” trading status and giving special tariffs reductions to nations that seek peace and to do business honestly…..like holding to the similar environmental standards and quality standards that we have in the US.  Likewise the US can hold nations such as China accountable who subsidize their industries in order to price dump.

I would hasten to add, US tariffs should be measured and rational to encourage discourse.  Not retaliatory and punitive tariffs,….a tit for a tat.  They should be flat and blind for a given nation, and not targeted to any particular industry/business which only encourages cronyism.  I have no problem if the Chinese find they have to operate steel mills inside US borders to avoid paying the tariff so long as we have access to their manufacturing technology….i.e. we can rip off their manufacturing IP.

In summary, I do not like tariffs, but we don’t live in a world of angels and we need some form of government.  Tariffs are the best way to raise operating revenue of that form of government.  It’s a form of a consumption tax the encourages investment in manufacturing inside the US border which means domestic jobs, and discourages price dumping, and outsourcing of environmental issues.

The US taxpayer still foots the bill, but is offset by a reduction of either corporate or personal income taxes or both.

Of course, few neo-classical economist talk of “total cost” in their marginal costs examples, or the benefit of moving revenue raising to tariffs away from corporate and personal income taxes.

And don’t be “scared” by Walter William’s arguments of the extra billions we pay for sugar.  As I said, I only advocate the extra billions are paid via the savings made by a reduction in personal, small business and corporate taxes whose costs are also come from our pocket books.    Arguments such as those fall on deaf ears….will any rational economist tell me why personal income taxes, corporate taxes, and small business taxes are preferred to tariffs?

 

The definition of a flake

Almost looks like he should be on the cover of GQ and not the US Senate.

So Flake pontificates about Trump’s language being like “Stalin’s”  while voting to Give the same Donald Trump more surveillance powers.

Glenn Greenwald takes to twitter and quips:

“Hi, I’m Jeff Flake. I’m really worried about our Stalinist President, which is why I voted less than 24 hours ago to increase his domestic spying powers and prevent any safeguards or checks on how Stalin can use those powers. I’m available for cable TV interviews and praise!”

I add, this is the same Jeff Flake, who demanded Roy Moore step aside if there was even a “shred of truth” in the claims against Moore and subsequently donated $100 to Doug Jones, Moore’s opponent in a “country over party” moment.

So, I’ll add “Hi, I’m Jeff Flake.  I am really worried about these allegations against Roy Moore…..so much so, I donated to Doug Jones.  If you want to interview me, you can catch me at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints where I follow the teachings of Joseph Smith, whose numerous *wives* included women between the ages of 14 and 17.”

You can’t make this stuff up, folks.

 

Jordan Peterson on postmodernism and cultural Marxism

Roh, Roh!

Oh, cry me a river Jamie Weinstein

So Mr. Michelle Fields, nee Jamie (how ironic ) Weinstein, cuckservative “wife” to social justice warrior Michelle Fields of #grabgate fame has to write an article about Trump’s moral failings destroying conservatism.  As though Jamie Weinstein can be objective about Trump, you see.  So, according to Jamie, a non-conservative like Trump is destroying “conservatism”.  The irony of moral failings:  Michelle #grabgate Fields who lied about being “tossed to the ground” by Corey Lewandowski is Jamie’s wife.  You just can’t make this stuff up.

The bolshevik left usually depends on George Soros to hire lap dogs to do the globalist left’s bidding, but they get the cuck lap dog Weinstein for free (I guess he might be on Soros’s payroll as well).  Like  a good subservient cuck, he upholds the left’s narrative that Trump is causing “conservatives” to be conflated with white nationalism and nazism.  In fact, there is little difference these days between folk like Weinstein, Kristol, Goldberg (coincidentally all Jews by the way), and the antifa left…..thus you get narratives originated by the left, parroted by Weinstein.

I have multiple problems with Weinstein’s thesis.  The first, is it is the left who identifies anyone who disagrees with them as a Nazi.   (The left has a strange fixation with Nazi’s…usually a sign of projection).   It’s because Trump actually stands in their way and gets under their skin is really why the left labels Trump a Nazi.  And because Trump correctly rejects their premise that the white nationalists in Charlottesville were the sole cause of events….poor little Weinstein assumes Trump must support white nationalism.  The argument is pure BS.

About the only thing I agree with Weinstein is that Trump isn’t particularly conservative, simply because Trump has never really been particularly political….he’s been a businessman.  The last I observed the American voter has a really bad opinion of politicians in Washington, and they voted Trump to the office of POTUS, a non-political outsider who isn’t beholding to the special interests which have given us the mess we are in. The left and #neverTrump neocon right just don’t get it.   Trump was voted to drain swamp creatures like Michelle Fields, and to undo the disastrous policies of the Obama administration.  And he has thus far has for the most part fulfilled that promise.  Where he has fallen short, is due to a feckless republican party supposedly supporting him.

Their day (Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell, Susan Collins, and McCain if he makes it) is coming.

The next problem I have with Weinstein’s thesis is that according to him, “alt-right” is a euphemism for white nationalism.   Is this so? Where is this intellectual body of literature and study been made to support this.   Where is the alt-right organizational headquarters….its brain trust.   I am not aware of one study that establishes the alt-right as an organized part of the republican right, or that the alt-right has any significant organizational impact on the policies of republicans.

Trump again was correct by pressing the reporter to define what the alt-right is, to which she deferred (my memory is foggy on this) to John McCuck McCain….who with all his intellectual might labelled the alt-right as “so-called”.  What a joke.  This is purely a bogeyman of the left and Weinstein, and McCain, being the good little cucks they are were brainwashed by the left’s narrative.   White nationalists make up an irrelevant part of “right” depending on how you define “white nationalist”.  (I personally wouldn’t identify any caucasian who wants to see America great again, a white nationalist).  David Duke, last he ran was rejected by the republican party.

So Trump isn’t a “conservative”.  And based by the neocon “conservative” purists, few are.   The pure conservatives are only to be found in the bowels of National Review, Washington DC, and talk radio.  And these people are now despised, universally.  They will never win an election with their narrow tent.

Since George Bush, being a “conservative” has lost its luster:  the label “conservative” has been co-opted and damaged by the neocons…….which ironically has at its own core of (white) nationalism also known as “American Exceptionalism”.  They advocate interventionist policies all over the world….policing 3rd world cesspools, and bullying tin pot dictators.  But for some explicable reason, this neocon right rejects trump.  I guess Trump isn’t hawkish enough, or isn’t on their payroll, or something.  maybe because he hasn’t invaded North Korea and Syria at the same time they don’t like him.

Weinstein probably has other problems….the ability to think and draw conclusions for himself that is independent of the National Review.

Nevertheless, Trump’s “make America great again” seems to want to appease these folks….which is dangerous.  I am hoping Trump is smarter in foreign policy than I .    It appears Trump’s actions taken thus far have been far more successful than I would have expected, and far more effective than his predecessor, Hussein Obama who was a dangerous destabilizing force for no good in the Middle East.

Trump is learning what a cesspool Washington is.  I have witnessed how he has become a little more shrewd in his dealings with the press.  What his supporters love about him is when he fights back….rather than roll over much like Weinstein has adopting the left’s premise and narrative about the alt-right.

So my advice to Mrs cuck Jamie[sic]Weinstein….be careful where you tread.  You, like your unemployed wifie… are walking on razor’s edge …and your career as a pundit could follow your wife’s right down into the toilet.  Being an obvious  beta-male, married to a social justice warrier like Michelle Fields, I give their marriage under 5 years.  But that is another story for another day.