View Poll Results: 4 more years for Bush? if he could.

Voters
267. This poll is closed
  • yes

    91 34.08%
  • no

    176 65.92%

Dumb Question- If Bush Could Run Again, Would You Vote For Him?

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  1. Quote Originally Posted by Brooklyn
    Welfare? Just dropping millions of poor people on their asses with no increase in jobs or wages will have a positive effect on this country?
    The alternative is to keep subsidizing them with more and more money. There is no transition plan for phasing welfare out that would cause less economic damage than simpy ending it. Same with the Fed. The best approach is to end it right then, right there, as you would any other destructive force.

    business' chance of survival. The more businesses that can thrive, the more employed this country is and the fewer poor people who need government subsidies, right?
    Wrong. Businesses that need government subsidization to survive are a drain on the economy. If they were using their resources wisely and efficiently they would survive without intervention. The government often hampers their ability to do that, but offerring subsidees as a cure for this is like breaking someone's leg to cure their headache.

    Nice to say you're ending bureaucracies but what will be left in their place?
    To quote Mises, "When you put out a fire, what do you replace it with?" There will be nothing left. That's the point.

    Part of reducing threats from foreign governments is making agreements with said governments.
    Grant this is true, "give us money or we'll attack you" seems to be the other countries' approach then. We're better off destroying their militaries and annexing them at that point. Otherwise, if Kellog's can figure out how many boxes of Raisin Bran to sell at each Wal Mart in the US, I think they and other businesses can accomplish the same thing in foreign countries without government intervention. There is no need to have any kind of ties with any country any where. Unless of course our goal is to engage in constant quid pro quo with other countries to try and loot as much of the world to the benefit of our politicians and their friends' wallets.

    Isolationism is nice if you want to blind your eyes to anything not directly in front of you.
    Isolationism does not equal noninterventionism.

    Huh? It's bad enough that education levels are so low in this country, let's leave education standards to.. who, the states?
    No, private industry. I like it, the government completely screws up our educational system, and we should keep it and pour more money into it. Makes sense. The government is the reason our educational system is so screwed up. Get them out of it period. I would actually favor a constitutional ammendment to ban the use of government funds for any and all education, similar to the ammendments many states passed against using tax dollars to build roads after they experienced the massive **** up government road building was early in our country's history.

    They do enough of failing at that. The parents? If they were educated under the current poor education standards, who are they to decide what is a good education?
    They are the children's parents, enough said. To that extent the market would decide what constitutes a good education. As with every other product the market delivers, you could expect quantity, quality and variety to go up and costs to go down.

    Unions as opposed to the private corporate community in charge? We've seen what happens when corporations run wild.
    No, we haven't... But, grant that you're correct, exactly what makes you think corporations running wild is the only alternative to our current mixed pseudosocialist state? The answer is because you have a typical liberal mindset, you can't imagine the government not doing something about anything. So, the government either sits on coroporations or helps them rape people, or at least turns a blind eye to such practices. It's never possible the liberal mindset to see the possibility of a government that simply enforces property rights. Mostly this because the concept is a foreign one to most people living today.

    I'll take regulated unionization over the Wal-Mart-ization of this country anyday.
    Hope you like unemployment. One of the worst effects of unions is to drive wages of unionized workers up. In a free economy when wages of say electricians go up it's a signal of increasing demand for those workers. People who go for those jobs are then rewarded, the wages (prices) equalize as supply rises to meet the demand. When unions get involved they force the wages of workers higher than the market price. This causes people to flock to the trade/union and try to get in, however fewer people will end up employed than otherwise would have at that price. You end up with an artificially increased pool of unemployed skilled workers chasing nonunion jobs, which gives employers more power and lowers general wages. Glad you're happy with that situation. The only unions that are successful without government intervention are those whose workers have an inflexible demand for their labor.

    Ok, so who decides what environmental regulations are "too misguided"? The head of Greenpeace or the president of Dow Corning?
    How about neither? Is it possible in your world for someone to live and make their own decisions and not have them made for them? If something can be shown to be harmful a tax can be laid on it's emmission relative to the amount emitted. This internalizes the cost and gives the company an incentive to seek alternative, clean methods. It also allows companies that are releasing negligible amounts of the material to not have to change to accomodate some ridiculous law which should not apply to them. The command and control method now used forces everyone to reduce emissions of x, even those companies that release unharmful traces. However, the command and control method gives more power to beauracrats so it's currently the more favored method.

    Also applicable are private property rights. In the end it doesn't matter if something is harmful or not, it's up to land owners to say whether or not they want it in their water/land/air. However, our government claims sovereign immunity for polluting other people's land and rents out as much public land as possible for private industry to pollute. Since no one technically owns the areas being pollutted no one can really do anything about it. Or, as is often the case the government will recognize and then disregard property rights.

    So how about this as an alternative, if someone wants to release something into the air or onto your land or in your water, they have to pay for the right to do so? With the exception of the few substances that are outright harmful in any amount, this would mean the optimal mevel of pollution would be reached fairly quickly because it would have a market price attached to it.

    No income tax at this point means that sales tax goes up to 30 or 40 percent. I hope you have a hell of a P.R. plan in mind for that strategy.
    Yup, it's called getting rid of well over 90% of the cost of government by simply stopping it from doing almost everything it's doing.

    A nice idea, and I'm sure someone like our friends the Saudis could do a great job of implementing it, in their country.
    Despite my generally freedom based views, I would gladly flay to death anyone who actively supports the war on drugs.

    So the government will now not print any money? Our currency will cease to exist. Sorry, anarchy is not a feasible economic system.
    Anarchy or your limited vision of the subject? Private money was fairly common and actually still is in some places. As the governments gain control over the currency of a nation they tend to **** it up beyond belief. The government's power to inflate and otherwise manipulate the money supply is their most destructive power.

    Easier said than done... and with the foreign policy of "Go away, Leave us alone" I'm sure it would work great.
    Look up isolationism and then look up noninterventionism. The two are not the same policy. Once more, military entanglements are not necessary to have economic relations with a country, nor are mercantilist/industrialist treaties necessary. It's a concept called free trade, and despite the fact that it's meaning has been perverted and the monicker adopted by its very enemies, it's still the best way to do things.

    The people who have no say in your foreign, social or economic policies who will suddenly be left in poverty, anarchy and total social disorder will certainly appreciate having the "power" the states allow them. Personally I don't know how a currency-less, unemployed, corporate-run and globally ignorant nation would be much of a world power anymore but maybe I'm missing something.
    You are, quite a bit in fact. A few books that might help explain:

    Human Action
    Man, Economy and State
    The History of Economic Thought
    Socialism

    Well if we take a literal interpretation of your suggestions we won't have to worry about our government for long, since it will likely be taken over shortly by a strong militaristic and nondemocratic power.
    I'm no fan of democracy, so I probably wouldn't mind. The idea that if 50%+1 of the people think something is a good idea, that makes it a good idea, is unbelievably naive and dangerous. I'd suggest you look up a short lecture by Hans Herman Hoppe in which he compared pre social democracy crime rates, tax loads, economic growth, government employments, et al, with post social democracy numbers. Generally speaking the more democratized a country gets the worse it gets. PRice indexes go flying upward. Inflation runs out of control. Government grows at an astounding rate. Military intervention increases at an astounding rate, etc.


  2. Economy

    The solution to welfare in my opinion is job training. The government could work with several corporations (I'm sure the government will subsidize the corporations for this) and train the poor to work. In the meantime, the government can give them welfare money. Once they are fully trained, they get hired at their job and thats it. If they fall out of work, tough luck. Only exception is mental defect. Use the money the government spends on welfare to good use. It creates another level of bureaucracy, yes, but it can help get people working. Nobody wants to be on welfare. Its a mark of shame to almost all.

    The government should not subsidize corporations unless its a dire situation. Executives and other management will have to be forced to take a major salary reduction if they want the company to move forward. The government should not give a $5 billion bailout because CEOs can't afford to pay themselves $3.5 million a year. If it was reduced to say $150,000, then the government can subsidize.

    The government should also heavily penalize corporations for shipping jobs overseas unless the savings are passed onto the consumer. Rarely are they and the savings are just spread throughout the executives. Stockholders can learn to adjust. Its not fair that people should be worried about losing their job because someone can do it in India for $8,000 as opposed to $40,000 here. Especially when the company can more than afford the $40,000 per head salary.

    Education

    I think the education system is ****ed. Mostly because the education system is at mercy of frivolous lawsuits that have basically turned it into a PC factory (Political Correctness) where schools aren't about education but about acceptance and tolerance. That sounds good and all but the point is to educate the students. America's education system is so piss poor because the schools are too afraid to give bad marks to bad students in fear of lawsuits. So instead, its a joke.

    I do not think it should be erradicated; I disagree with CDB. It should be overhauled. I'd say the amount of money spent on education should double, maybe triple. Including powerful lawyers who can fight tooth and nail against frivolous lawsuits, which can discourage them. I think they should do away with books. The future is computers. It would cut into the textbook industry but well, **** them. That way students can be homeschooled if they want to. A teacher could just e-mail them the assignments, the family can just get the CD-ROMs or online downloads. This would keep the education quality consistent. Poor schools would have the same materials.

    Athletics would become mandatory and carry as much weight as English classes (in my HS, they were the most important subject) Schools would do away with grades entirely and go with percentages. Students who do poorly can receive outside assistance, free of charge to salvage their grades. If not, well, they're on their own. Make academic options available but leave it in the students' hands.

    This all costs more money but we put the fate of education into the students. No more excuses. Collegiate education should not have more money put into it but the loan program should continue...since you're just paying the money back anyway.

    Military

    Pull all troops out and have them on the border. Significantly reduces illegal immigrants. The world can handle itself now, thanks to nukes. Nuclear weapons are the ultimate peacemakers because no country dare **** with a nation with nukes. The US keeps helping out the world and gets **** on, at the expense of our tax dollars, and lives of our soldiers. Keep military research funding going but not at the extreme amounts it was going for...even in the 90s. We still need to be a nation to be feared and therefore, untouchable.
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  3. DEFINATELY not!

  4. CDB, are you a libertarian? We share very similar views on government.

    As Ronald Reagan said,

    "Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. From time to time we've been tempted to believe that society has become too complex to be managed by self-rule, that government by an elite group is superior to government for, by, and of the people. Well, if no one among us is capable of governing himself, then who among us has the capacity to govern someone else?"
  5. Exclamation


    CDB, I will say that your theories are extremely... optimistic... which is why I disagree with much of them, not because of any "liberal" disposition. Extremely optimistic is a synonym to unrealistic. I also disagree because what you suggest is not advantageous to people in general. The only people to benefit from your plans would once again be already wealthy land/property owners. The goal I have in thinking of economic system design is how to provide opportunities to make many more people into wealthy landowners rather than starving slaves to minimum wage.

    Quote Originally Posted by CDB
    The alternative is to keep subsidizing them with more and more money. There is no transition plan for phasing welfare out that would cause less economic damage than simpy ending it. Same with the Fed. The best approach is to end it right then, right there, as you would any other destructive force.
    Smart men make smart plans. "Workfare"... isn't that what the Republicans called it? Teach people, give them the necessary skills to succeed and help them become proud, well-paid workers. Stop passively encouraging families to have more kids so they can receive a bigger monthly balance. Persons who have more children after enrolling in a public assistance program should be penalized for choosing to continue to procreate without the money to support themselves. "Families First" is a joke. As if being single and not popping out 5 babies makes you a second class citizen. If anything, those that place less of a burden on the state should be treated better. Again, just "ending" all social assistance programs would leave thousands dead of starvation and cause mass rioting. You're thinking in the viewpoint of the rich man in the ivory tower. Try switching to that of the beggar in the street or the family man struggling to feed his family. You'd change tunes real quick.

    Quote Originally Posted by CDB
    To quote Mises, "When you put out a fire, what do you replace it with?" There will be nothing left. That's the point.
    But it wouldn't work that way in real life. In real life when you eliminate the people in charge of state affairs, treasury, agriculture, commerce, health and human services, housing and urban development, transportation, energy, education, homeland security... you end up with a lot of problems with no "here" for the buck to stop at. Nothing left is what you'd have to govern the U.S..

    Quote Originally Posted by CDB
    Grant this is true, "give us money or we'll attack you" seems to be the other countries' approach then. We're better off destroying their militaries and annexing them at that point. Otherwise, if Kellog's can figure out how many boxes of Raisin Bran to sell at each Wal Mart in the US, I think they and other businesses can accomplish the same thing in foreign countries without government intervention. There is no need to have any kind of ties with any country any where. Unless of course our goal is to engage in constant quid pro quo with other countries to try and loot as much of the world to the benefit of our politicians and their friends' wallets.
    I'm not talking about giving everyone money not to attack us. I'm talking about peace agreements. Now I'm sorry, but in today's world it's somewhat unrealistic when you are the most powerful country in the world to expect that you can just pursue what you call a "non-interventionist" policy and be looked upon as anything other than selfish and socially irresponsible on a global level. Realistically America can try not to intervene all it wants, sooner or later it's going to happen. The question is, will we have strong allies and world opinion on our side or will we go it alone as in this silly war against Iraq? I prefer to think realistically and not in highly theoretical and excessively optimistic views. Weren't those the kind of opinions that got us into the war in Iraq anyway? "It'll be over in 3 weeks," and "The people there are crying out for freedom." Guess what, it wasn't. Guess what, they weren't.

    Quote Originally Posted by CDB
    No, private industry.
    Wait. Let me stop laughing at that statement a minute.

    Ok.

    Quote Originally Posted by CDB
    I like it, the government completely screws up our educational system, and we should keep it and pour more money into it. Makes sense. The government is the reason our educational system is so screwed up. Get them out of it period. I would actually favor a constitutional ammendment to ban the use of government funds for any and all education, similar to the ammendments many states passed against using tax dollars to build roads after they experienced the massive **** up government road building was early in our country's history.
    The problem isn't that the government devises educational plans, it's that the wrong people are put in charge of these plans. The ideal democratic republic government is a halfway mixture of the "pride and responsibility" aspects of Nazi socialism and the "free trade" and more importantly, free speech of a capitalist society. The ideal environment in which to ceate a better country with a lower crime rate is to make them proud and happy. Proud of themselves, proud of their achievements, proud of their town, proud to be American. Dubya had this opportunity to unite Americans after 9/11 and he blew it by bending to capitalism above patriotism. America needed strong leadership and all it got was "go back to your shopping, that'll show 'em". That's why, for all that is said that is bad about John Kerry I really appreciated his ideas on instilling the youth with a sense of community service and pride, and encouraging public service. What your plans lack is balance. A government run as you suggest would be at the mercy of trade and capital even as you talk of private currency. Private industry does everything "on the cheap" just as in the case of the railways inspecting brakes only on failure. You talk of insurance companies catching on but with the relative rarity of major catastrophic failure of brakes the railway takes a calculated risk and would likely fudge the facts to make it appear that they had done nothing wrong in the ensuing investigation. This is what happens when you leave corporations without oversight. They will not oversee themselves in matters of public and social responsibility. This has been proven. Enron didn't. Tyco didn't. WorldCom didn't. Etc., etc. Money and market dominance are the motivating factors of capitalism. Money and control, the motivating factors of government. This is why most economies today are mixed between the two. What matters most in determining how successful that mixture is is who is at the top of the pyramid, not the bottom. I'll post more later.

  6. Quote Originally Posted by Brooklyn
    CDB, I will say that your theories are extremely... optimistic... which is why I disagree with much of them, not because of any "liberal" disposition.
    My theories are not optimistic, nor are they mine per se, as they've been developed in much greater depth by people a lot smarter than me. My opinion, backed up by reality in my view, is that the less government, the better. That is not to say problems wouldn't exist, just that they would be smaller, have less impact and be less troublesome under such a system.

    The only people to benefit from your plans would once again be already wealthy land/property owners.
    That statement alone suggests a severe misunderstanding of basic economics.

    The goal I have in thinking of economic system design is how to provide opportunities to make many more people into wealthy landowners rather than starving slaves to minimum wage.
    Not ideologically slanted at all...

    Smart men make smart plans. "Workfare"... isn't that what the Republicans called it? Teach people, give them the necessary skills to succeed and help them become proud, well-paid workers.
    Bad idea. One, it sucks money out of the private sector which could have been used much more efficiently there. Two, the government does not have some crystal ball as to what the economy needs. No one does. As a result they're as likely to train people in useless skills as useful.

    As if being single and not popping out 5 babies makes you a second class citizen. If anything, those that place less of a burden on the state should be treated better. Again, just "ending" all social assistance programs would leave thousands dead of starvation and cause mass rioting. You're thinking in the viewpoint of the rich man in the ivory tower. Try switching to that of the beggar in the street or the family man struggling to feed his family. You'd change tunes real quick.
    I've been there and done that. Thinking like the beggar in the street is an insanely wrong way to approach the problem: he's a beggar in the street, obviously for whatever reason does not have his act together. His wants and needs aren't relevant to a basic discussion of how they're met in the least destructive way. The least destructive way would be for him to get off his ass and work for himself. If he's incapable, he's got my charity dollar. If in the end that still wasn't enough, then perhaps government support.

    But, no matter how you approach the subsidization of poverty, as long as you subsidize it there will be ever increasing amounts of it. There is no way to avoid that.

    But it wouldn't work that way in real life. In real life when you eliminate the people in charge of state affairs, treasury, agriculture, commerce, health and human services, housing and urban development, transportation, energy, education, homeland security... you end up with a lot of problems with no "here" for the buck to stop at. Nothing left is what you'd have to govern the U.S..
    Implicit in this statement is that there is absolutely no other way to accomodate these demands of society than through government. Sounds like a very limited view of the world to me.

    Now I'm sorry, but in today's world it's somewhat unrealistic when you are the most powerful country in the world to expect that you can just pursue what you call a "non-interventionist" policy and be looked upon as anything other than selfish and socially irresponsible on a global level.
    Sounds like you've bought the party line hook, line and sinker.

    Realistically America can try not to intervene all it wants, sooner or later it's going to happen. The question is, will we have strong allies and world opinion on our side or will we go it alone as in this silly war against Iraq?
    That is your limit of view on this issue? Interventionism is what's made us so many enemies the world over. Having strong allies? Making friends with someone else's enemy is a good way to get enemies yourself. I'd suggest a review of works by the old scholastics who were the first to develop international law concepts, more specifically laws that were in large part guiding principles to protect the rights of neutrals. You're stuck in the 20th century ideology of war or nothing, Brooklyn. There was a time, not too long before Woodrow Wilson, where noninterventionism was considered honorable and correct, and it worked. Wars still existed, but they were limited and largely practical in nature. Hans Herman Hoppe has a good lecture and a good many articles out on the differences between pre and post WWI foreign policy, good reads that I'd recommend.

    Since Wilson, with the cop on the corner analogy for foreign policy, we've managed to make so many enemies and get involved in so many wars that it's hard to count them now. Instead of listening the ideology espoused by republicrats why don't you just take a look at the results of their policies.

    I prefer to think realistically and not in highly theoretical and excessively optimistic views.
    So do I, which I guess makes this a useless reply. It's ever been the call of people engaging in poor practices for everyone just to "be practical" or "be realistic." 'Practicality' and 'realism' have been the excuses for a great number of boondoggles and outright evil acts in history.

    Weren't those the kind of opinions that got us into the war in Iraq anyway? "It'll be over in 3 weeks," and "The people there are crying out for freedom." Guess what, it wasn't. Guess what, they weren't.
    I don't support the war in Iraq, so what's the point here?

    The problem isn't that the government devises educational plans, it's that the wrong people are put in charge of these plans.
    That's what they kept saying about the Soviet Union. Socialism would work if we could just get the right people in charge. Just like FEMA is supposed to work now Brown is gone. It's not the people, it's the system. It. Can't. Work. Like it or not, there are economic laws that don't simply change based on who is in power. You could take Jesus Christ himself and put him in charge of our government and he'd have ****ed it up completely in a few years. It simply can't work.

    Private industry does everything "on the cheap" just as in the case of the railways inspecting brakes only on failure. You talk of insurance companies catching on but with the relative rarity of major catastrophic failure of brakes the railway takes a calculated risk and would likely fudge the facts to make it appear that they had done nothing wrong in the ensuing investigation. This is what happens when you leave corporations without oversight.
    Nor is anybody suggesting they will. However the government is not the only group capable of making such oversight possible. It is the only group that does so involuntarily and forces everyone to a single standard no matter what their risk reward trade off might be. Plus, by doing so it greatly reduces the viability of alternatives, making people dependent on it for such services. Go back to the schools, we pour twice as much money per student into them than private schools get, and even after any special circumstances are taken into account they quite simply can't get kids educated to the same standard. And don't doubt for a second that some of the most well educated and well meaning people in our country are involved in those schools and the higher administration. The system will not work because there is no incentive for it to work, period. There is no accountability, screw ups bring in more money not less.

    They will not oversee themselves in matters of public and social responsibility. This has been proven. Enron didn't. Tyco didn't. WorldCom didn't. Etc., etc. Money and market dominance are the motivating factors of capitalism.
    The companies you pointed out were working within the frameworks the government gave them to work with. Government makes laws with looholes and vagueries, corporations use them to their advantage, as does every single tax payer in the nation, and when the **** hits the fan we blame... the corporations. Brilliant.

    Money and control, the motivating factors of government. This is why most economies today are mixed between the two. What matters most in determining how successful that mixture is is who is at the top of the pyramid, not the bottom. I'll post more later.
    Once more, this statement shows a deep misunderstanding of history, how government works, how economies work, and how the world in general works. It doesn't matter who is in charge. The system itself, full of perverse incentives and no accountability, is the problem. The market at least has accountability. You don't like someone's products, you don't buy them. You don't like someone's trains, you don't ride them. The key aspect of choice is what makes the market superior to other means because no one is forced to live by anyone else's standards. If you want a certain level of safety that's higher than most, it will be available at a premium higher than the average. If you're willing to take risks and aren't endangering anyone else, you'd have that choice too.

    And through all of this, every socialist on this board has yet to answer the key question: exactly how do these evil, subversive, destructive, horrible, blood thirsty, mudering corporations "run wild" over people without government help? Only the government can force you to do something. Only the government can kill you with no consequences for not complying with their dictates. Only the government can throw you in prison for not doing things their way. Only the government can take your land away without just compensation. Only the government can **** you against your will for arbitrary reasons. Only the government can force you to buy their services to the exclusion of all others. And it is only with the help of the government that corporations can do such things. In that light, that's why I see the government as the operative evil factor. Without the government corporations are powerless organizations. What's a corporation to do if it wants your land to build on? In a free market they have to buy it at a price at which you're willing to sell. They can't force you off your land without the government's help in either seizing the property or ignoring their aggression towards you if that's the route they chose.

    Money only buys power if the government puts it up for sale. And, put simply, the more government the more salesmen.

    Every critique you offer of capitalism is off base for a variety of reasons. One, aesthetic critiques don't matter. You may disagree with the law of gravity because you want to fly, but it will not change because you don't like it. Similarly there are laws in economics that won't change regardless of whether or not people choose to acknowledge them. That they are qualitative and not quantitative makes no difference. Two, you for some reason completely ignore the government's role in creating the problems you supposedly want government to solve. Every other good and service the market handles with little or no regulation by the government manages to reach an general equlibrium and a market clearing price.

    Take education. There's no reason, absolutely no reason education is different from any other service that could be offerred to anyone. There is no free rider problem, there is nothing special or magical about education, books or teachers that makes the market incapable of delivering these goods and services. In fact, in the face of massive regulation the market still manages to deliver them to a smaller audience at a much lower price than public schools who not only cost more in total, but more on a per student basis even after any special considerations are taken into account. After literally almost a century of progressively increasing government regulation over schools at all levels they have done nothing but decline in quality no matter who was in charge of the system. This might clue you in, but for some reason it doesn't. In an endless effort to "get it right" with new people in charge everyone still manages to screw it up. That's because the system is not set up to be self improving and it can't be set up that way and still be in the public sector. If the kids aren't getting educated in private schools those schools go out of business. Simple self correction. The schools that do the best job at the best price get the most business. When kids in public education don't get educated the system, after proving its ineffectiveness and inefficiency, gets more money and resources poured into it. That's the basic nature of all government programs. The bigger the failure, the more money they are guaranteed to get. It's completely the opposite of the way it should be by nature, not by choice. No matter who is in charge the system will fail by nature. The most you can hope for is a slow fall to mediocrity.

    Three, the costs of all these approaches you advocate are often unseen. One grat example of this is antitrust law. For years in the middle of last century GM had a policy to never let their market share go above 47% or some similar number because they feared an antitrust lawsuit. How much more competitive would they have been otherwise? How much cheaper would cars have been for customers? How much better would the US auto industry have been if, instead of ****ting their pants in anticipation of a lawsuit, car companies could have competed to their full ability? There's no way of knowing, but that doesn't mean a cost hasn't been incurred. Unions push up the market price of their labor and end up creating a pool of unemployment around that trade, which the market has to adjust to accomodate. The increased competition for the remaining jobs means the market clearing price for labor will go lower. How much higher would wages in general have been? There's no way of knowing, but that doesn't mean a cost hasn't been incurred. The government decides it needs to regulate and build all the roads in our nation, despite a fairly booming private road construction business early in our history (see work by economist Robert Klein), because the politically connected don't always find it as easy as they'd like to get a road in their area. Now we have a scarce resource, roads, being used by everyone including every drunk and nitwit in the country who proved they could drive around the block and parallel park. How many people a year die on these roads? There's no way of knowing how many wouldn't have died had another approach been used, but that doesn't mean a cost hasn't been incurred. And when privatization comes up everyone screams there will toll booths everywhere, showing their general ignorance and political bias by taking a government solution to road scarcity and assuming that's the only way to deal with the issue.

    Bottom line is, I've been down your road of thought Brooklyn. For a long time and further than you and I know where it leads. We've seen where it leads, seen it in North Korea, in East Germany, and in the shining example of the USSR. Going down that route when it's been proven to be such a dismal failure time and time again is insane. And there is no appropriate mix of government and business. The government should do one thing and one thing only as its primary focus: protect individual's property rights, in terms of them owning their own bodies and their own land. When it comes to foreign policy allow trade unhindered across borders. If someone agresses against us wipe them out, otherwise stay out of other country's affairs. If two tribes are slaughtering each other in Africa that's terrible, but it's not an appropriate use of tax money to go over get our military involved, not in the least because there's no clear good guy or bad guy to fight against, and even if there were sending our army over turns us into the Humanitarian with a Guillotine, which Isabel Patterson correctly pointed out is a terrorist in action.
    Last edited by CDB; 01-17-2006 at 12:28 PM.

  7. Quote Originally Posted by CDB
    My theories are not optimistic, nor are they mine per se, as they've been developed in much greater depth by people a lot smarter than me. My opinion, backed up by reality in my view, is that the less government, the better. That is not to say problems wouldn't exist, just that they would be smaller, have less impact and be less troublesome under such a system.
    I'm all for a smaller government, as in a government with less personal restrictions and less overhead. This is not the same as eliminating government regulation entirely which is essentially what you're proposing. Government is there to do just that- to govern. To establish laws and a viable economic system under which its people can prosper. In the case of the U.S., ideally with the least restrictions necessary to ensure fair practices and a continuously improving financial situation for all.

    Quote Originally Posted by CDB
    That statement alone suggests a severe misunderstanding of basic economics.
    Not from what I see you suggesting. The rich would, having no government challenges to corporate gain, become richer. The poor, who you claim would work in a "free market" which would "motivate them to gain" is like Reagan's trickle-down theory. It doesn't work. Reaganomics destroyed the middle class and pushed people into upper and lower classes more than ever before. CEOs and high ranking executives now have exponentially higher salaries. Minimum wage hasn't risen much though. In fact most Republicans would like to lower it. Wal Mart is a perfect example of a "free market" corporation. They do everything possible to avoid regulation and take advantage of every break they can get. They import goods created by workers in foreign countries making 20 cents an hour working 12+ hour days. They flout labor laws, immigration work laws, wage laws, trade policies and traditional good practice. To avoid insuring their employees they pass off the cost of health care to state Medicaid and assistance programs and create a financial burden on the proleteriat. They are able to do this because their average employee makes so little that they meet income level requirements for poverty assistance. Yet Wal Mart is among the largest and most profitable corporations in the world. This is the consequence of a free market. You create a country ruled by corporations. The market has accountability? Only to profit. Companies like this are as "interventionist" as the U.S. in foreign affairs. What makes it any different? Everything, whether a Federal government or a corporate board is a governing entity. What incentive does a corporation have to provide safe, effective products to consumers if there is no threat of penalties? Profit? Companies have proven time and again that the can manufacture garbage and make tons of money off it. Slick marketing sells best, not quality or effectiveness. Ask MuscleTech about that.

    Quote Originally Posted by CDB
    Bad idea. One, it sucks money out of the private sector which could have been used much more efficiently there. Two, the government does not have some crystal ball as to what the economy needs. No one does. As a result they're as likely to train people in useless skills as useful.
    So you hire independent, well paid commerce experts to plan the trends and chart the country's needs. What does a successful corporation do to determine the needs of its consumers? It's not impossible to achieve. For instance, the country has a statistically verifiable shortage of, say, pharmacists (another example of the effect of slick marketing on other industries). So one job training course might focus on introductory medical jobs, with meaningful job counseling in the right direction. The idea of "workfare" and job training is to give a hand up, not a handout. You're looking at government as a big mess and I'm looking at it as a bloated corporation which needs to reorganize in order to be successful and profitable. Consider the U.S. government a corporation in which its citizens are its minority shareholders. The better off they are, the better off the corporation will be as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by CDB
    I've been there and done that. Thinking like the beggar in the street is an insanely wrong way to approach the problem: he's a beggar in the street, obviously for whatever reason does not have his act together. His wants and needs aren't relevant to a basic discussion of how they're met in the least destructive way. The least destructive way would be for him to get off his ass and work for himself. If he's incapable, he's got my charity dollar. If in the end that still wasn't enough, then perhaps government support.

    But, no matter how you approach the subsidization of poverty, as long as you subsidize it there will be ever increasing amounts of it. There is no way to avoid that.
    All you're saying is that poor people don't want to work. They don't want to be successful. They are unmotivated and that is their cause for failure. I'm sorry but I don't believe that. Yes, some poor people are lazy, through ignorance or the lack of hope or belief in themselves that they can achieve better. These circumstances are caused by a cycle of problems. One is lack of jobs. In some places, the best job you can hope for is at McDonalds or Popeye's. If you can't afford a higher education and the lower educational system has failed to provide you with the necessary skills to gain a good-paying job then what are you, an ignorant poor person in a ghetto, supposed to do? Walk out and hope that some Fortune 500 company is dumb enough to hire you with no experience and no education? Many of the poor people in this country just need hope. It's a recurring theme in urban films from Boyz n the Hood to Hustle and Flow. Why does much of our young enlisted military come from poor neighborhoods? Because the military gives poor people hope. A steady paycheck. The promise of funds for education. A way to learn skills and earn honor and respect. It's not much but it is hope. That's what this country needs more of and I don't mean by a bigger military. I mean by giving people real goals and real assistance- the kind that helps them to overcome their situation and teaches them to help others up when they get there. Eliminating the government's role in, well, governing doesn't achieve that. In fact it achieves quite the opposite. Selfish greed and squandering, criminal activity and addictive drug use in poor communities are all by-products of hopelessness. If a young man's career choices lay between Burger King and drug dealing, which do you think he is more likely to gravitate toward? Remember, hand up, not handout. Increasing subsidization wouldn't happen if more people were learning skills, getting good jobs and making more money, would it? No, because those people would be well above the poverty line and no longer need or be eligible for support.

    In regard to subsidization continually increasing, that is actually and somewhat ironically the real-world result of Wal-Mart-ization. A company such as Wal Mart comes into a poor community providing a large variety of goods at a lower price in one place. They pay low wages and have few benefits. By undercutting their competition through sheer mass purchase power they cause many local and established businesesses to close. The lack of local businesses forces more people to work at Wal Mart. It also causes wages and benefits to decrease at those competitors that survive in order to stay afloat. Now the community, having lost jobs and generally having less income is forced to shop at Wal Mart since it is now the only place the people can afford to shop at. Thus you have created a cyclical system in which poverty increases relative to a "free market" without restriction or a sense of corporate social responsibility. The real problem is that other, often directly unrelated businesses in other communities and other industries watch and play follow the leader with the way they handle business as well. Follow this road to its logical conclusion. Thus you begin to experience the dire consequences of irresponsible capitalism. This is why there are unions and government regulations, not to make some mafia boss or lazy workers happy.

  8. Quote Originally Posted by Brooklyn
    I'm all for a smaller government, as in a government with less personal restrictions and less overhead. This is not the same as eliminating government regulation entirely which is essentially what you're proposing. Government is there to do just that- to govern. To establish laws and a viable economic system under which its people can prosper. In the case of the U.S., ideally with the least restrictions necessary to ensure fair practices and a continuously improving financial situation for all.
    The government can no more "establish a viable economic system" than they can establish a viable physics system. Once again, a deep misunderstanding of how economics works. It is a bottom up order, not top down. It comes into being spontaneously, not by government decree, as a response to scarcity. There is also no way for the government to provide a continuously improving financial situation for all. For one, the removal of risk removes the possiblity for profit. Stopping the momentary financial misfortune of some has to be done at the expense of others and by interfering with the normal market function of resource reallocation for another. This takes the already existing market function and makes it less efficient. "Fair practices" beyond the protection of private property rights are ambiguous and subjective at best for another. A lot of people consider in unfair that they have to pay for anything. A general consensus is meaningless, any such consensus will result in property rights violations, lead to market uncertainty and general market disfunction to varying degrees. That would in fact be how I would characterize government as its best and most accurate description: the mechanism through which some seek to, and often to succeed at screwing others for their own personal benefit.

    Not from what I see you suggesting. The rich would, having no government challenges to corporate gain, become richer. The poor, who you claim would work in a "free market" which would "motivate them to gain" is like Reagan's trickle-down theory. It doesn't work. Reaganomics destroyed the middle class and pushed people into upper and lower classes more than ever before. CEOs and high ranking executives now have exponentially higher salaries. Minimum wage hasn't risen much though. In fact most Republicans would like to lower it.
    "[T]he economic policy of laissez-faire is described as "trickle-down" theory. One way to turn the tables on this old canard is to describe the welfare state as based on a "trickle down" theory. Vast amounts of tax revenue are transferred to a gigantic, swollen, wealthy, bureaucratic, inefficient, monolithic state in the naive hope that enough of this revenue will trickle down to the poor and needy."
    Roderick T. Long

    For one, Reaganomics comes no where near the Laissez Faire economics of the type I'm writing about here. Once again, a severe misunderstanding of basic economics. Republican supply side econimics is just as ridiculously uninformed and doomed to fail as socialism, and oddly enough at root for the same reasons. The inflationary business expansion through credit expansion, easy loans, etc., leads to a temporary misallocation of capital, which eventually gets corrected through an economic depression as resources are liquidated and reallocated. If done continuously it leads to a permanent economin malaise in which the market is constantly trying to reallocate resources that are being used inefficiently because of government intervention. Essentially socialism does the same thing and for the same reason, just by messing up a different part of the price structure, or in actuallity attempting to completely eliminate it.

    As for minimum wage, it shouldn't rise, and it shouldn't be there at all in fact. For one, trying to make every job pay a "living wage" or any other similar nonsense denies the fact that different values are attached to different types of labor, just as different values are attached to all types of resources. You can't make a living doing whatever you want, that's a reality of life. By establishing and progressively raising the minimum wage you ensure permanent unemployment, especially for people who are working at the marginal rate for labor. Raise the minimum wage and companies will simply buy less people. They'll also expect more of the fewer numbers that remain, and the salaries of the remaining workers will probably not justify the demand put on them over time. This also makes the replacement of labor by more costly methods more attractive, furthering the problem of unemployment. So by having a minimum wage you're essentially screwing lower skilled workers four times. One, you're disemploying a fair number of them; two, you're making it more attractive for companies to replace labor with machines; three, you're making the jobs of the ones who remain employed more miserable because, if they want to keep the job, they have to pick up the slack of the disemployed; and four, the displaced workers will be competing for the remaining jobs in the market which will tend to lower the market clearing prices (wages) of labor. In an unhampered market capital investment in labor increases productivity and generally over time increases the demand for labor. The result is a rise in real wages, not a fall as you suggest. Wage amounts may stay the same, sometimes even fall, but the purchasing power per dollar earned goes up steadily as productivity increases. As long as the government is debasing the currency and screwing up the economy with various interventions this effect is fairly hard to see, but has been apparent at several times in history, most notibly at the time of industrialization in various countries. Prices drop, wages go up, labor becomes more specialized and divided, the variety of goods and services increases, along with the standard of living going up fairly fast. These things tend to stop when the government gets involved.

    Wal Mart is a perfect example of a "free market" corporation. They do everything possible to avoid regulation and take advantage of every break they can get.
    Gasp!? God forbid...!

    They import goods created by workers in foreign countries making 20 cents an hour working 12+ hour days. They flout labor laws, immigration work laws, wage laws, trade policies and traditional good practice. To avoid insuring their employees they pass off the cost of health care to state Medicaid and assistance programs and create a financial burden on the proleteriat.
    This ignores the government's primary role in destroying our health care system, making the costs so ridiculously high. One example, ER visits. By forcing ERs as far as they can to accept patients regardless of whether or not they can pay, the cost goes up for everyone. Another example would be the AMA and the near monopoly status handed to them by the government late in the 19th century. This plus the continuous flow of costly regulations, costs which the medical community needs to recoup somehow, cause an unending increase in the cost of health care to the point where we now have pseudo rationing through HMOs.

    They are able to do this because their average employee makes so little that they meet income level requirements for poverty assistance. Yet Wal Mart is among the largest and most profitable corporations in the world. This is the consequence of a free market. You create a country ruled by corporations.
    You are so off base here it is ridiculous, but it's a typical liberal ploy. Look at the world today that the government screwed up and blame it on capitalism. And your claim that Wal Mart disemploys people is ridiculous as well. For one, the economy is not static. If you can't deal with the fact that your job is not guaranteed become a priest and live in poverty. That's life. Two, you're arguing against productivity, which is the same arguments put forward against automation of all kinds. After all, when railroads were invented the stage coach business sufferred. Think of all those poor, unemployed people who used to drive the stages, the people who raised the horses, etc. What about when looms were invented, or the printing press, and the jobs those machines replaced and made unnecessary? All those poor people who were unemployed...

    Once again, you have a very deep misunderstanding of how the economy works. The elimination of some retail jobs because one or more competitors is more productive at the same or lower price is a GOOD thing. Artificially keeping labor in unproductive jobs is a drain on the economy and leads to a wasting of resources. You're also ignoring the fact that those people are employable elsewhere. The economy cannot stay static to ensure everyone's job security. Were that the case we'd still be living in caves.

    The market has accountability? Only to profit.
    Where do they get that profit? From consumers. Are consumers forced to give it? No, they have a choice. That's the only accountability that's needed. The only way a company can continue to profit is to continue to please consumers. That is, absent government intervention and government granted monopolies.

    What incentive does a corporation have to provide safe, effective products to consumers if there is no threat of penalties? Profit?
    Just a thought, but killing your customers tends to lower your profit potential. If a company knowingly does something to hurt someone, knowingly puts a product on the market that is inherently harmful and lies about it, there are basic common law traditions, criminal and civil, that can take care of those situations. There's rarely a need for extra 'regulation,' especially since such regulation adds a cost to products which is not necessary, and can even become ridiculously outdated but will still be enforced even when it is irrelevant.

    So you hire independent, well paid commerce experts to plan the trends and chart the country's needs. What does a successful corporation do to determine the needs of its consumers?
    Corporations guess. There is no way to know beforehand what consumers want. It's the risk that creates the possibility for profit. You CAN'T plan the economy. No one knows "the country's needs." It is a continual process of discovery over time, and when the task is undertaken by the government there is no way to weed out the failures. Even the country's most successful entrepreneaurs have a past riddled with failures. But the risk of those failure was taken on by them and their investors alone. Were they to have worked for the government those failures would have led to more money infusions to follow the same exact business plan and wasted resources.

    It's not impossible to achieve. For instance, the country has a statistically verifiable shortage of, say, pharmacists (another example of the effect of slick marketing on other industries). So one job training course might focus on introductory medical jobs, with meaningful job counseling in the right direction.
    This is exactly what the USSR did. Witness their vast success. Once more, you clearly have a massively deep misunderstanding of economics. No one has access to the type of information needed to plan the economy on that level. Attempts to do so are what LEAD to massive shortages and surplusses. You don't get shortages and surpluses in a free market because there is a built in mechanism to deal with them. If there is a surplus the price(wage) for a given trade goes down and the job attracts less people. If there is a pronounced scarcity the price(wage) goes up and this attracts more people to the trade.

    All you're saying is that poor people don't want to work. They don't want to be successful. They are unmotivated and that is their cause for failure.
    Some are, some aren't. Most I've met want to work more than any other people I've know, but can't for various reasons. One of my functions at my job is to help such people find work by getting the employment openings from our clients to various charity and state organizations. The charities are more than willing to help. Last time we tried to hire in Jersey we had to spend Christ knows how much time and money to aquire a license of some kind to, of all things, get the government to post a job flyer in their state employment office and on their internet site. With the time and money we spent getting that license we could have hired a guy off the street to paper the flyers all over northern Jersey. But, that likely would have gotten us a fine or two thousand under some ridiculous law against public displays of that kind. Another great bit of nonsense recently took place with my Gulf Coast clients. Jobs aplenty down there that I could advertise until I'm blue in the face. What happens when we communicate these jobs to the local schools and organizations? Well, I get about 75-100 calls a day because of the wide area we're dealing with telling me that unless we have an Equal Opportunity Employer statement on file from our clients, the jobs can't be posted. So I have to waste literally days of my time, putting of other productive work I could be doing, faxing and emailling EOE forms back and forth all day. Companies have to swear a solemn oath before the altar of the government that they will hire blacks and hispanics before a job can be posted. And of course, each company has to allocate some of it's capital to make sure it's "in compliance" with this another ridiculous regulations. Capital that could have been invested in the company and its workforce. Great way to help poor people, I hope we follow this model you suggest because it works soooo well. I love the fact that we're talking about this particular issue, because the biggest obstacle in my line of work - recruiting, sourcing, workforce consulting, etc. - is always the frigging government. We have to swear to be nice, to be pretty, to treat with respect, any and all people who come before us looking for a job, and spend all the necessary money to comply with the respective regulations of that process. We have to collect their info, report it to the state, make sure they're paying their taxes now!, keep ridiculously detailed records for ridiculous lengths of time just in case we get audited by some government busybody, etc., and spend all the necessary money to comply with the respective regulations of those processes.

    Now you'd probably say that's unreasonable and you wouldn't run the system that way. There is no way to NOT run the system that way. It is inherently flawed. Even if you set up your perfect dream system with the most benevolent and intelligent people on the planet 'in charge' of everything, within a short span of time it would be no different than our own bloated, over fed state.

    I don't claim to have the inside scoop on why any particular poor person, street bum or whatever is in their specific situation. I do know that if you guarantee to alleviate their situation through government subsidization you will get more and more of the same because you are reducing the incentive for them to care for themselves when they are able. You have to understand you're not dealing with absolute decisions but marginal ones. "Do I pay for my own food, or do I take this government hand out for food or do I spend the money I have on a new TV?" Anyone with a guaranteed income of some kind reworks their entire value structure. Through subsidization you devalue their ability to provide for themselves and place the decisions necessary to do so lower on their own value scales. Over time this leads to dependence, sloth, and an ever increasing problem of subsidized poverty. And it really doesn't matter what limits or means tests are placed on such a program because the overall effect is the same. At most you delay the bloat.

    In regard to subsidization continually increasing, that is actually and somewhat ironically the real-world result of Wal-Mart-ization. A company such as Wal Mart comes into a poor community providing a large variety of goods at a lower price in one place. They pay low wages and have few benefits. By undercutting their competition through sheer mass purchase power they cause many local and established businesesses to close. The lack of local businesses forces more people to work at Wal Mart. It also causes wages and benefits to decrease at those competitors that survive in order to stay afloat.
    See above. Arguing against productivity increases, which NECESSITATE a reallocation of labor, is arguing against the very advancement of the economy itself. Look up Paul Krugman's work and then the refutations of his nonsense, which are many and numerous, as he's one the main proponents of this kind of thinking. Once again, you have a very deep and blatantly obvious misunderstanding of how an economy works. It CAN'T be managed, it CAN'T be planned, it CAN'T be nudged in one direction or another without negative consequences of varying severity.

  9. Haven't voted Republican in a national election and I don't plan on it...

    I don't understand were people get this "he's getting the job done" or "He's not actually that bad of a president".

    What exactly has he done again? Becuase all I see is ****load of debt that will haunt us for quite some time, scientific progress being put on the back burner and no real solutions to education or poverty.

  10. Quote Originally Posted by Jeffrw
    Haven't voted Republican in a national election and I don't plan on it...

    I don't understand were people get this "he's getting the job done" or "He's not actually that bad of a president".

    What exactly has he done again? Becuase all I see is ****load of debt that will haunt us for quite some time, scientific progress being put on the back burner and no real solutions to education or poverty.
    All true to varying degrees. In which case he's no different than most of our presidents since Lincoln, and so I guess relatively speaking that might make him "not bad" to some people. And as long as he's bombing brown people in an arguably inconsequential foreign country, that will keep some segment of the population happy too. There have been positives to his time in office as well. He finally touched the social security third rail in a major way. No major response, but at least he got his feet wet. People will hopefully be less afraid to approach this and other once touchy, third rail issues in the future, like for example the war on drugs. He's a polarizing figure to most people. They either hate him or love him. Me, I don't give a ****. One president either way isn't going to improve or screw my life up in any significant way for the most part. But, because he's polarizing Republicans overlook his massive spending and Democrats blame him for every evil on the Earth. Both are wrong, but to me at least on this issue the Democrats are more amusing.
    •   
       


  11. Is there a cliff note version to this thread? i have enough to read on my own but this all sounds interesting.

  12. hell ya, there are no other better opitions out there. Alot of people are quick to forget that he had the balls to step up to the plate and go after the terrorist's after 911. I served under Clinton and that baby would have just looked for an apologie. So hell ya Bush

  13. I agree, there's nothing good that Bush has done:

    1) Eliminated a tax surplus into the most rampant spending ever. Of course we'll never know the actual figures being spent annually since certain stuff (military expenses) get cut out. Some say its anywhere from $700-800 billion annually. Some think more. Whats worse is that there's so much tax cuts for the rich that we're borrowing more than we ever had to.

    2) No Child Left Behind is a miserable flop. Education is worse than its ever been, despite the education beefed up by 100%. Where is the money going to? Not into the system itself, more into the pockets of the school boards.

    3) Cut education spending for college students...for loans. Money that you pay back to the government. He also cut the Corps of Engineers, which was responsible for the levee in Louisiana. As a student for Civil Engineering, this point sticks out to me more than to others I suppose.

    4) Billions of unaccounted for dollars. Nobody knows whats happening to it. Not to forget the extremely padded no bid contract deals. Probably the worst record of spending ever.

    5) Sent in a small amount of troops in Afghanistan, making it possible for Osama to run out and escape. I thought he might have been dead but it looks like he's alive and well, unfortunately. Now it looks like the Taliban forces are slowly gaining momentum in certain parts. Some areas are no-go zones for American troops.

    6) Sent troops into Iraq without proper body armor or weaponry. At least a bridge in Alaska is getting all the support it needs.

    7) Almost a complete deregulation of businesses. Gives tax breaks to companies for outsourcing. Companies are now hiring employees...for half the wages people were fired for 10 years ago. Lets massive companies merge for hundreds of billions of dollars, leaving a massive gap between the has and the has nots. Small companies' existences are futile. Fortunately the internet is a way for companies to get some more revenue.

    8) Turned the US into an international joke. Its Bush's way or the highway. Unfortunately for Bush, people are picking the highway. Irreperable damage? I don't think so but we ****ed over a lot of countries.

    9) Wants to drill into Alaska, where prices will barely be impacted. At least oil companies will be making a cool several hundred million from it. Thats all that matters in the end to the administration and his butt buddies.

    I don't know if Bush is the worst President ever but he's at the bottom of the barrel. The whole "There's worse out there" is really not an excuse. Most Americans don't mind him since most of what goes on is outside of their realm. If there was a draft or a raise in taxes to make up for the spending, people would wake up immediately to what Bush is doing.

  14. Quote Originally Posted by The Experiment
    7) Almost a complete deregulation of businesses.


    Oh, that's so frigging rich!

    If our economy is deregulated then I'm Chuck ****ing Norris.

  15. Quote Originally Posted by CDB
    I'm Chuck ****ing Norris.
    hey im sorry about those names i called you jk

  16. Quote Originally Posted by CDB


    Oh, that's so frigging rich!

    If our economy is deregulated then I'm Chuck ****ing Norris.
    Didn't you read the stories about oil companies got away with lying about the cost of their production to avoid paying premiums to the government? Its recent news.

  17. Quote Originally Posted by The Experiment
    Didn't you read the stories about oil companies got away with lying about the cost of their production to avoid paying premiums to the government? Its recent news.
    That wasn't your claim. You said Bush had undertaken "[a]lmost a complete deregulation of businesses." This is complete nonsense on its face and not worth more than a laugh at its lunacy.

  18. Bush is an idiot ass.


  19. Things bush has done.. i think The Experiment MIGHT find something in this stack of stuff that he agrees with lol..



    Abortion & Traditional Values
    1. Banned Partial Birth Abortion — by far the most significant roll-back of abortion on demand since Roe v. Wade.
    2. Reversed Clinton's move to strike Reagan's anti-abortion Mexico Policy.
    3. By Executive Order (EO), reversed Clinton's policy of not requiring parental consent for abortions under the Medical Privacy Act.
    4. By EO, prohibited federal funds for international family planning groups that provide abortions and related services.
    5. Upheld the ban on abortions at military hospitals.
    6. Made $33 million available for abstinence education programs in 2004.
    7. Supports the Defense of Marriage Act — and a Constitutional amendment saying marriage is between one man and one woman.
    8. Requires states to conduct criminal background checks on prospective foster and adoptive parents.
    9. Requires districts to let students transfer out of dangerous schools.
    10. Requires schools to have a zero-tolerance policy for classroom disruption (reintroducing discipline into classrooms).
    11. Signed the Teacher Protection Act, which protects teachers from lawsuits related to student discipline.
    12. Expanded the role of faith-based and community organizations in after-school programs.
    Budget, Taxes & Economy
    1. Signed two income tax cuts, one of which was the largest dollar-value tax cut in world history.
    2. Supports permanent elimination of the death tax.
    3. Turned around an inherited economy that was in recession, and deeply shocked as a result of the 9/11 attacks.
    4. Is seeking legislation to amend the Constitution to give the president line-item veto authority.
    5. In process of permanently eliminating IRS marriage penalty.
    6. Increased small business incentives to expand and to hire new people.
    7. Initiated discussion on privatizing Social Security and individual investment accounts.
    8. Killed Clinton's "ergonomic" rules that OSHA was about to implement; rules would have shut down every home business in America.
    9. Passed tough new laws to hold corporate criminals to account as a result of corporate scandals.
    10. Reduced taxes on dividends and capital gains.
    11. Signed trade promotion authority.
    12. Reduced and is working to ultimately eliminate the estate tax for family farms and ranches.
    13. Fight Europe's ban on importing biotech crops from the United States.
    14. Exempt food from unilateral trade sanctions and embargoes.
    15. Provided $20 million to states to help people with disabilities work from home.
    16. Created a fund to encourage technologies that help the disabled.
    17. Increased the annual contribution limit on Education IRA's from $500 to $2,000 per child.
    18. Make permanent the $5,000 adoption tax credit and provide $1 billion over five years to increase the credit to $10,000.
    19. Grant a complete tax exemption for prepaid or college tuition savings plans.
    20. Reduced H1B visas from a high of 195,000 per year to 66,000 per year.
    1. Signed the No Child Left Behind Act, delivering the most dramatic education reforms in a generation (challenging the soft bigotry of low expectations). The very liberal California Teachers union is currently running radio ads against the accountability provisions of this Act.
    2. Announced "Jobs for the 21st Century," a comprehensive plan to better prepare workers for jobs in the new millennium by strengthening post-secondary education and job training, and by improving high school education.
    3. Is working to provide vouchers to low-income students in persistently failing schools to help with costs of attending private schools. (Blocked in the Senate.)
    4. Requires annual reading and math tests in grades three through eight.
    5. Requires states to participate in the National Assessment of Education Progress, or an equivalent program, to establish a national benchmark for academic performance.
    6. Requires school-by-school accountability report cards.
    7. Established a $2.4 billion fund to help states implement teacher accountability systems.
    8. Increased funding for the Troops-to-Teachers program, which recruits former military personnel to to become teachers.
    Environment & Energy
    1. Killed the Kyoto Global Warming Treaty.
    2. Submitted a comprehensive Energy Plan (awaits Congressional action). The plan works to develop cleaner technology, produce more natural gas here at home, make America less dependent on foreign sources of energy, improve national grid, etc.
    3. Established a $10 million grant program to promote private conservation initiatives.
    4. Significantly eased field-testing controls of genetically engineered crops.
    5. Changed parts of the Forestry Management Act to allow necessary cleanup of the national forests in order to reduce fire danger.
    6. Part of national forests cleanup: Restricted judicial challenges (based on the Endangered Species Act and other challenges), and removed the need for an Environmental Impact Statement before removing fuels/logging to reduce fire danger.
    7. Killed Clinton's CO2 rules that were choking off all of the electricity surplus to California.
    8. Provided matching grants for state programs that help private landowners protect rare species.
    Defense & Foreign Policy
    1. Successfully executed two wars in the aftermath of 9/11/01: Afghanistan and Iraq. 50 million people who had lived under tyrannical regimes now live in freedom.
    2. Saddam Hussein is now in prison. His two murderous sons are dead. All but a handful of the regime's senior members were killed or captured.
    3. Leader by leader and member by member, al Qaida is being hunted down in dozens of countries around the world. Of the senior al Qaida leaders, operational managers, and key facilitators the U.S. Government has been tracking, nearly two-thirds have been taken into custody or killed. The detentions or deaths of senior al Qaida leaders, including Khalid Shaykh Muhammad, the mastermind of 9/11, and Muhammad Atef, Osama bin Laden's second-in-command until his death in late 2001, have been important in the War on Terror.
    4. Disarmed Libya of its chemical, nuclear and biological WMD's without bribes or bloodshed.
    5. Continues to execute the War On Terror, getting worldwide cooperation to track funds/terrorists. Has cut off much of the terrorists' funding, and captured or killed many key leaders of the al Qaeda network.
    6. Initiated a comprehensive review of our military, which was completed just prior to 9/11/01, and which accurately reported that ASYMMETRICAL WARFARE capabilities were critical in the 21st Century.
    7. Killed the old US/Soviet Union ABM Treaty that was preventing the U.S. from deploying our ABM defenses.
    8. Has been one of the strongest, if not THE strongest friend Israel has ever hand in the U.S. presidency.
    9. Part of the coalition for an Israeli/Palestinian "Roadmap to Peace," along with Great Britain, Russia and the EU.
    10. Pushed through THREE raises for our military. Increased military pay by more than $1 billion a year.
    11. Signed the LARGEST nuclear arms reduction in world history with Russia.
    12. Started withdrawing our troops from Bosnia, and has announced withdrawal of our troops from Germany and the Korean DMZ.
    13. Prohibited putting U.S. troops under U.N. command.
    14. Paid back UN dues only in return for reforms and reduction of U.S. share of the costs.
    15. Earmarked at least 20 percent of the Defense procurement budget for next-generation weaponry.
    16. Increased defense research and development spending by at least $20 billion from fiscal 2002 to 2006.
    17. Ordered a comprehensive review of military weapons and strategy.
    18. Ordered a review of overseas deployments.
    19. Ordered renovation of military housing. The military has already upgraded about 10 percent of its inventory and expects to modernize 76,000 additional homes this year.
    20. Is working to tighten restrictions on military-technology exports.
    21. Brought back our EP-3 intel plane and crew from China without any bribes or bloodshed.
    Globalization & Internationalism
    1. Challenged the United Nations to live up to their responsibilities and not become another League of Nations (in other words, showed the UN to be completely irrelevant).
    2. Killed U.S. involvement in the International Criminal Court.
    3. Told the United Nations we weren't interested in their plans for gun control (i.e., the International Ban on Small Arms Trafficking Treaty).*
    4. The only President since the founding of the UN to essentially tell that organization it is irrelevant. He said: "The conduct of the Iraqi regime is a threat to the authority of the United Nations, and a threat to peace. Iraq has answered a decade of UN demands with a decade of defiance. All the world now faces a test, and the United Nations a difficult and defining moment. Are Security Council resolutions to be honored and enforced, or cast aside without consequence? Will the United Nations serve the purpose of its founding, or will it be irrelevant?" We all know the outcome and the answer.
    5. Told the Congress and the world, "America will never seek a permission slip to defend the security of our country."
    Government Reform
    1. Improved government efficiency by putting hundreds of thousands of jobs put up for bid. This weakens public-sector unions and cuts undeserved pay raises.
    2. Initiated review of all federal agencies with the goal of eliminating federal jobs (completed September 2003) in an effort to reduce the size of the federal government while increasing private sector jobs.
    3. Led the most extensive reorganization the Federal bureaucracy in over 50 years: After 9/11, condensed 20+ overlapping agencies and their intelligence sectors into one agency, the Department of Homeland Security.*
    4. Ordered each agency to draft a five-year plan to restructure itself, with fewer managers.
    5. Converted federal service contracts to performance-based contracts wherever possible so that the contractor has measurable performance goals.
    Health
    1. Strengthen the National Health Service Corps to put more physicians in the neediest areas, and make its scholarship funds tax-free.
    2. Double the research budget of the National Institutes of Health.
    3. Signed Medicare Reform, which includes:
    • A 10-year privatization option.
    • Prescription drug benefits: Prior to this reform, Medicare paid for extended hospital stays for ulcer surgery, for example, at a cost of about $28,000 per patient. Yet Medicare would not pay for the drugs that eliminate the cause of most ulcers, drugs that cost about $500 a year. Now, drug coverage under Medicare will allow seniors to replace more expensive surgeries and hospitalizations with less expensive prescription medicine.
    • More health care choices: As President Bush stated, "…when seniors have the ability to make choices, health care plans within Medicare will have to compete for their business by offering higher quality service [at lower cost]. For the seniors of America, more choices and more control will mean better health care. These are the kinds of health care options we give to the members of Congress and federal employees. What's good for members of Congress is also good for seniors.
    • New Health Savings Accounts: Effective January 1, 2004, Americans can set aside up to $4,500 every year, tax free, to save for medical expenses. Depending on your tax bracket, that means you'll save between 10 to 35 percent on any costs covered by money in your account. Every year, the money not spent would stay in the account and gain interest tax-free, just like an IRA. These accounts will be good for small business owners, and employees. More businesses can focus on covering workers for major medical problems, such as hospitalization for an injury or illness. At the same time, employees and their families will use these accounts to cover doctors visits, or lab tests, or other smaller costs. Some employers will contribute to employee health accounts. This will help more American families get the health care they need at the price they can afford.
    Homeland Security, Border Enforcement & Immigration
    1. *See Government Reform above. Under President Bush's leadership, America has made an unprecedented commitment to homeland security.
    2. Has CONSTRUCTION in process on the first 10 ABM silos in Alaska so that America will have a defense against North Korean nukes. Has ordered national and theater ballistic missile defenses to be deployed by 2004.
    3. Announced a 9.7% increase in government-wide homeland security funding in his FY 2005 budget, nearly tripling the FY 2001 levels (excluding the Department of Defense and Project BioShield).
    4. Before DHS was created, there were inspectors from three different agencies of the Federal Government and Border Patrol officers protecting our borders. Through DHS, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) now consolidates all border activities into a single agency to create "one face at the border." This not only better secures the borders of the United States, but it also eliminates many of the inefficiencies that occurred under the old system. With over 18,000 CBP inspectors and 11,000 Border Patrol agents, CBP has 29,000 uniformed officers on our borders.
    5. The Border Patrol is continuing installation of monitoring devices along the borders to detect illegal activity.
    6. Launched Operation Tarmac to investigate businesses and workers in the secure areas of domestic airports and ensure immigration law compliance. Since 9/11, DHS has audited 3,640 businesses, examined 259,037 employee records, arrested 1,030 unauthorized workers, and participated in the criminal indictment of 774 individuals.
    7. Since September 11, 2001, the Coast Guard has conducted more than 124,000 port security patrols, 13,000 air patrols, boarded more than 92,000 vessels, interdicted over 14,000 individuals attempting to enter the United States illegally, and created and maintained more than 90 Maritime Security Zones.
    8. Announced the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS), an internet-based system that is improving America's ability to track and monitor foreign students and exchange visitors. Over 870,000 students are registered in SEVIS. Of 285 completed field investigations, 71 aliens were arrested.
    9. This week, the US-VISIT program began to digitally collect biometric identifiers to record the entry and exit of aliens who travel into the U.S on a visa. Together with the standard information, this new program will confirm compliance with visa and immigration policies.
    10. Eliminated INS bureaucratic redundancies and lack of accountability.
    11. Split the Immigration and Naturalization Service into two agencies: one to protect the border and interior, the other to deal with naturalization.
    12. Signed the workplace verification bill to prevent hiring of illegal aliens.
    13. Established a six-month deadline for processing immigration applications.
    14. Information regarding nearly 100% of all containerized cargo is carefully screened by DHS before it arrives in the United States. Higher risk shipments are physically inspected for terrorist weapons and contraband prior to being released from the port of entry. Advanced technologies are being deployed to identify warning signs of chemical, biological, or radiological attacks. Since September 11, 2001, hundreds of thousands of first responders across America have been trained to recognize and respond to the effects of a WMD attack.
    Judiciary & Tort Reform
    1. Is urging federal liability reform to eliminate frivolous lawsuits.
    2. Killed the liberal ABA's unconstitutional role in vetting federal judges. The Senate is supposed to advise and consent, not the ABA.
    3. Is nominating strong, conservative judges to the judiciary.
    4. Supports class action reform bill which limits lawyer fees so that more settlement money goes to victims.
    Politics

    1. His leadership resulted in Republican gains in the House and Senate, solidifying Republican control of both houses of Congress and the presidency.
    2. Signed an EO enforcing the Supreme Court's Beck decision regarding union dues being used for political campaigns against individual's wishes.
    Second Amendment
    1. Ordered Attorney General Ashcroft to formally notify the Supreme Court that the OFFICIAL U.S. government position on the 2nd Amendment is that it supports INDIVIDUAL rights to own firearms, and is NOT a Leftist-imagined "collective" right.
    2. Signed TWO bills into law that arm our pilots with handguns in the cockpit.
    3. Currently pushing for full immunity from lawsuits for our national gun manufacturers.
    4. *See Globalization & Internationalism.
    Traditional Values, Compassion & Volunteerism
    1. Endorses and promotes "The Responsibility Era." President Bush often speaks of the necessity of personal responsibility and civic volunteerism. He said, "In a compassionate society, people respect one another and take responsibility for the decisions they make in life. My hope is to change the culture from one that has said, if it feels good, do it; if you've got a problem, blame somebody else — to one in which every single American understands that he or she is responsible for the decisions that you make; you're responsible for loving your children with all your heart and all your soul; you're responsible for being involved with the quality of the education of your children; you're responsible for making sure the community in which you live is safe; you're responsible for loving your neighbor, just like you would like to be loved yourself."
    2. Started the USA Freedom Corps, the most comprehensive clearinghouse of volunteer opportunities ever offered. For the first time in history, Americans can enter geographic information about where they want to get involved, such as state or zip code, as well as areas of interest ranging from education to the environment, and they can access volunteer opportunities offered by more than 50,000 organizations across the country and around the world.
    3. Established the The White House Office and the Centers for the Faith-Based and Community Initiative — located in seven Federal agencies. The faith-based initiative supports the essential work of these important organizations. The goal is to make sure that grassroots leaders can compete on an equal footing for federal dollars, receive greater private support, and face fewer bureaucratic barriers. Work focuses on at-risk youth, ex-offenders, the homeless and hungry, substance abusers, those with HIV/AIDS, and welfare-to-work families.
    4. The White House released a guidebook fully describing the Administration's belief that faith-based groups have a Constitutionally-protected right to maintain their religious identity through hiring — even when Federal funds are involved.
    5. Issued an EO implementing the Supreme Court's Olmstead ruling, which requires moving disabled people from institutions to community-based facilities when possible.
    6. Increased funding for low-interest loan programs to help people with disabilities purchase devices to assist them.
    7. Revised the Department of Housing and Urban Development's Section 8 rent subsidies to disabled people, permitting them to use up to a year's worth of vouchers to finance down payments on homes. HUD has started pilot programs in 11 states.
    8. Committed US funds to purchase medicine for millions of men, women and children now suffering with AIDS in Africa.
    9. Heeding the words of our own Declaration of Independence, the president laid out the non-negotiable demands of human dignity for all people everywhere. On January 29, 2002, he said, "No nation owns these aspirations, and no nation is exempt from them. We have no intention of imposing our culture. But America will always stand firm for the non-negotiable demands of human dignity." As stated by the President, they are a virtual manifesto of conservative principles:
    • Equal Justice
    • Freedom of Speech
    • Limited Government Power
    • Private Property Rights
    • Religious Tolerance
    • Respect for Women
    • Rule of Law

  20. I agree, there's nothing good that Bush has done:

    1) Eliminated a tax surplus into the most rampant spending ever. Of course we'll never know the actual figures being spent annually since certain stuff (military expenses) get cut out. Some say its anywhere from $700-800 billion annually. Some think more. Whats worse is that there's so much tax cuts for the rich that we're borrowing more than we ever had to.

    What good is a tax surplus. We now have a better and stronger economy then when we had a surplus. Bush has failed to advertise that.


    2) No Child Left Behind is a miserable flop. Education is worse than its ever been, despite the education beefed up by 100%. Where is the money going to? Not into the system itself, more into the pockets of the school boards.

    I agree. Some children should be left behind. Not everyone is suppose to be smart, and we need short order cooks. This money can be put into national security.. acutally.. he should cut NASA too.. we don't need anymore battle bots on mars


    3) Cut education spending for college students...for loans. Money that you pay back to the government. He also cut the Corps of Engineers, which was responsible for the levee in Louisiana. As a student for Civil Engineering, this point sticks out to me more than to others I suppose.

    Good. Not everyone should go to college. I work for a college and I have no problem failing people, though i get heat for it. More than half of my students shouldn't be out of 10th grade let a lone college. A degree at college is worthless today because of the amount given out.

    4) Billions of unaccounted for dollars. Nobody knows whats happening to it. Not to forget the extremely padded no bid contract deals. Probably the worst record of spending ever.

    Speculation. Give an exact amount.

    5) Sent in a small amount of troops in Afghanistan, making it possible for Osama to run out and escape. I thought he might have been dead but it looks like he's alive and well, unfortunately. Now it looks like the Taliban forces are slowly gaining momentum in certain parts. Some areas are no-go zones for American troops.

    Bush has done something that most presidents are scared to do. Let the military control the miltary. Anything the military needed, they ended up getting after it was requested. Take into account it is almost better that Osama isn't killed our caught. He is worth more to his cause if he is dead....


    6) Sent troops into Iraq without proper body armor or weaponry. At least a bridge in Alaska is getting all the support it needs.

    Same as above comment

    7) Almost a complete deregulation of businesses. Gives tax breaks to companies for outsourcing. Companies are now hiring employees...for half the wages people were fired for 10 years ago. Lets massive companies merge for hundreds of billions of dollars, leaving a massive gap between the has and the has nots. Small companies' existences are futile. Fortunately the internet is a way for companies to get some more revenue.

    I think the other posts talked about this issue. But i do agree that oil companies are in the "free and open market" I couldn't open up an oil field and sell maynardogo gas for 22cent a gal...

    8) Turned the US into an international joke. Its Bush's way or the highway. Unfortunately for Bush, people are picking the highway. Irreperable damage? I don't think so but we ****ed over a lot of countries.

    The united states spends more money, time, man power to aid international issues than ANY country combined. These nations stop laughing after they ask for our help.


    9) Wants to drill into Alaska, where prices will barely be impacted. At least oil companies will be making a cool several hundred million from it. Thats all that matters in the end to the administration and his butt buddies.

    True. Kenedy, Kerry, Clinton, Bush, Edwards, and mike moore will get lots of money when we drill in alaska.. they all have a take in the oil game. I know everone has that idea of going to Alaska.. fishing in the river.. starting their life a new.. re connecting with nature and life.. but know what... they dont.. they go to sin city. We have the ability to drill and be clean.. its being done and will be done.. Just because we protect nature doesn't mean it will prolong the human race as well.. Example is DDT. We ban that.. now we have west nile virus killing thousands a year... its a catch 22


    I don't know if Bush is the worst President ever but he's at the bottom of the barrel. The whole "There's worse out there" is really not an excuse. Most Americans don't mind him since most of what goes on is outside of their realm. If there was a draft or a raise in taxes to make up for the spending, people would wake up immediately to what Bush is doing.

    If there was a draft, it was voted in by the democratic party whom twice try to have that bill pass. Raising taxes doesnt ever cover spending.. it never did.

  21. What good is a tax surplus. We now have a better and stronger economy then when we had a surplus. Bush has failed to advertise that.
    The surplus could pay off some national debt for one. A tax cut wasn't really needed and all the future tax cuts were really unnecessary.

    Also, a stronger economy for whom? The cost of living is rising faster than wages.

    I agree. Some children should be left behind. Not everyone is suppose to be smart, and we need short order cooks. This money can be put into national security.. acutally.. he should cut NASA too.. we don't need anymore battle bots on mars
    Uh oh, I'm afraid I agree with you on something Just kidding. I think that the quality of education should get better but the opportunities are there for teenagers to better themselves. At my High School, the drop out rate was extremely high; so high that your driver's license was suspended for six months for dropping out.

    Anyway, at age 16-18, people kept dropping out because they'd rather stick to their $9/hr job than finish school. People are such idiots. I think opportunities should be available for every student but if they blow it, tough ****.

    Good. Not everyone should go to college. I work for a college and I have no problem failing people, though i get heat for it. More than half of my students shouldn't be out of 10th grade let a lone college. A degree at college is worthless today because of the amount given out.
    Whats funny about this is that now it seems like jobs (Engineering ones anyway) send you right back to Graduate School once you get hired. I have no problem with people failing either. The problem with College is that its not about higher education any more. Now its about quotas. People don't give a **** about education as much as they care about how many women are in Mathematics or Sciences.

    Speculation. Give an exact amount.
    $8.8 billion.

    http://www.drudgereport.com/flash5.htm

    The united states spends more money, time, man power to aid international issues than ANY country combined. These nations stop laughing after they ask for our help.
    I agree but my point is I want America to be respected by everyone; an example of a country where people can aspire to be. They don't have to be afraid of getting tortured if they mentioned they don't like Kim Jong-Il or all those doctors in Turkmenistan who promised to help out the leader, not the citizens there. Thats the way I want America to be seen. As inspiration.

    True. Kenedy, Kerry, Clinton, Bush, Edwards, and mike moore will get lots of money when we drill in alaska.. they all have a take in the oil game
    Of course, as long as the money is right, political parties will turn against their principles.

  22. You can't reason with the left.

    George Bush is the sole reason for everything wrong in America to them. No man has ever been hated so much, while being responsible for so little.

    I don't even like him that much as a President (too liberal), but I can't stand the ridiculous amount of hatred people spew about him.

    Also, keep in mind, the democrats in Congress and the Senate are saints and completely blameless for the actions of the government.

  23. I didn't vote for him the first time, his old man either. Beelzebub will be wearing long johns before I ever voted for anyone with the last name of Shrub!! Before I get branded as a left winger, it has nothing to do with right or left, it has to do with the man and his old man. Those 2 are the evil incarnated on Earth in my opinion!! I used to be a republican, then I saw the light and became a Libertarian.
    ROB

  24. Quote Originally Posted by MaynardMeek

    1. Signed the No Child Left Behind Act, delivering the most dramatic education reforms in a generation (challenging the soft bigotry of low expectations). The very liberal California Teachers union is currently running radio ads against the accountability provisions of this Act.


    That is the biggest joke in the world. The only people who think that Bush did a good job with that do not work anywhere near a public school.

    Its not that schools shouldn't be accountable, but he has failed to supply the necessary funding to support it.

    And for those of you who don't know everything about it, its not just buying new books or computers. It fails to pay for the additional teachers, tutors and teaching aides that are required to go with his plan.

    Also Private Industry wouldn't work for education. Education is not that profitable. It also doesn't take into account how poor many districts are. And I'm not just talking inner city, but also rural and blue-collar towns. If you elimenated the taxes and government support, most American's would not be able to afford the tuition for their kids.
    Also if the government had no hand in education, how can they possibly require that students attend? You can't make Americans attend a private institution.

  25. Alright, alright. Nice exchange of ideas. Now exactly which one of you "lettered" on the debate team? Also, have you been telling others you earned it playing football?

  26. Yes, but im making a lot of money here in Iraq, so i guess im biased.

  27. Quote Originally Posted by Jeffrw
    And for those of you who don't know everything about it, its not just buying new books or computers. It fails to pay for the additional teachers, tutors and teaching aides that are required to go with his plan. Also Private Industry wouldn't work for education. Education is not that profitable. It also doesn't take into account how poor many districts are.
    This is news indeed since the private economy has managed to take once massively costly items like TVs, computers and cars and essentially made them available to anyone at prices almost anyone can afford. Either there is something incredible and magical about education that makes it immune to the market forces that affect every single other product or service in the exact same way, or your statement is incorrect. I'm inclided to think the latter is the correct option. After all the manufacturers of TVs, basketballs and footballs, boomboxes, snazzy sneakers, fast food services and chrome spinner rims don't take into account the relative paucity of the people in those districts, but in my last trip into the ghetto for a client I saw no shortage of those items.

    That education as it currently exists might be destroyed by privatization I have no doubt. It's an inefficient model based on old technology and political correctness more than effectiveness these days, and a change from that model would mean the end of a lot of cushy administrative careers and a mixed business model that seems to have done more to support its employees than its customers (kids and parents) over the years, which I think is what's really behind the resistance to change of almost any kind the education community offers. The only change they seem to support is an increase in their budget. At least privatization would get rid of that reversed logic, that a failing system should get more money.

    As for what bush has done for education, I doubt he's improved or made it worse in any tangible way.


    Also if the government had no hand in education, how can they possibly require that students attend? You can't make Americans attend a private institution.
    Many state laws require people take out insurance policies on their cars, but this doesn't mean the state or federal government needs to own the insurance companies too.

  28. Quote Originally Posted by CDB
    This is news indeed since the private economy has managed to take once massively costly items like TVs, computers and cars and essentially made them available to anyone at prices almost anyone can afford. Either there is something incredible and magical about education that makes it immune to the market forces that affect every single other product or service in the exact same way, or your statement is incorrect. I'm inclided to think the latter is the correct option. After all the manufacturers of TVs, basketballs and footballs, boomboxes, snazzy sneakers, fast food services and chrome spinner rims don't take into account the relative paucity of the people in those districts, but in my last trip into the ghetto for a client I saw no shortage of those items.
    Do you noticed how all of your examples of private industry making things affordable are all products produced overseas by cheap labor? And fast food? Why is fast food so cheap and fast? Because its filled with CRAP. I don't think anybody on here is going to step up and say McDonald's makes quality food.
    That education as it currently exists might be destroyed by privatization I have no doubt. It's an inefficient model based on old technology and political correctness more than effectiveness these days, and a change from that model would mean the end of a lot of cushy administrative careers and a mixed business model that seems to have done more to support its employees than its customers (kids and parents) over the years, which I think is what's really behind the resistance to change of almost any kind the education community offers. The only change they seem to support is an increase in their budget. At least privatization would get rid of that reversed logic, that a failing system should get more money.
    So where is this money going to come from? I mean seriously, if you cut out all taxes, then only people attending would pay right? So it'd be tuition. The school I work at has 700 students. 41% are low income. This is a former factory town (Amaco/Standard and Clark) not an inner city. There are no fancy suburbs or subdivisions. It's a basic middle income town. So how would this be affordable? You would still need quality teachers, so you need competive pay. You still need secratarial, maintance, janitorial, cafeteria workers, bus drivers, etc. That's a lot of people and their money has to come from somewhere. Plus you have the overhead costs of supplies and utilities bills.

    Many state laws require people take out insurance policies on their cars, but this doesn't mean the state or federal government needs to own the insurance companies too.
    Yes but driving a car is a privelage not a right. Also the government controls, regulates and pays for the highways. So I am to assume that you think an education is a product and not a right?

  29. Quote Originally Posted by Jeffrw
    Do you noticed how all of your examples of private industry making things affordable are all products produced overseas by cheap labor? And fast food? Why is fast food so cheap and fast? Because its filled with CRAP. I don't anybody on here is going to step up and say McDonald's makes quality food.
    No, but that's not my point. If there is a demand for something and it can be done, it will be delivered by the market. It's the profit incentive. As for the cheap labor, you're assuming the only business model for education is the current one used by public education. That's blaming the problems of the government on the private sector. The private market would provide a variety of choices, from things similar to what we have now to targetted courses for learning trades or specific subjects. There can be distance learning, at home learning, predesigned packages, endless options requiring different amounts of resources and labor.

    The current failed model of education is the government's failure, not that of the private sector, and just as government manufactured cars in the old socialist states were horrible, saying the private sector couldn't do it better and using those cars as the example would obviously be as incorrect as it is to point to our current education model and say private industry couldn't do it better, when obviously they could.

    So where is this money going to come from? I mean seriously, if you cut out all taxes, then only people attending would pay right? So it'd be tuition. The school I work at has 700 students. 41% are low income. This is a former factory town (Amaco/Standard and Clark) not an inner city. There are no fancy suburbs or subdivisions. It's a basic middle income town. So how would this be affordable? You would still need quality teachers, so you need competive pay. You still need secratarial, maintance, janitorial, cafeteria workers, bus drivers, etc. That's a lot of people and their money has to come from somewhere. Plus you have the overhead costs of supplies and utilities bills.
    See above. You're limiting possiblities to the current model of education. Of course it would be impossible to fund our current public education system privately, because no private investor in his right mind would pour a cent into such a wasteful, ridiculously inefficient structure. That is not the only option there is, unless of course the private market is stopped from discovering and developing other options for people. Yes, lower income families would have differnt options than rich people. I'd rather they had more and different options than being forced into the one size fits all failure we currently have.

    Yes but driving a car is a privelage not a right. So I am to assume that you think an education is a product and not a right?
    No, I do not belive education is a right, not in the sense you seem to imply. Rights do not impose costs on other people. The right to free speech doesn't mean everyone gets their own subsidized daily newspaper. Nor should the right to do something be confused with the ability to do something. I have the right to buy a Lexus, but I have no right to force anyone else to pay for it if i can't afford it myself. People certainly have the right to persue an education for themselves or their children, but definitely not to force others to hand it to them. At least in my opinion, I admit people can disagree on this issue and the fact that kids didn't exactly ask to be here kind of greys it a bit.

    I would still argue though that the efficiency of the private market would better meet the needs and wants of all people, which is in my opinion a better option than forcing almost everyone into making one choice. The poorness of our current educational system is, I think, easily tracable to the fact that it is government controlled and comes with all the weird and perverse incentives of such a structurte, making the delivery of a quality education to kids a systemic impossiblity over time. It will degenerate and there's no way to stop it because failure simply isn't punished. The system always sees an income no matter how dissatisfied it's 'customers' are. That is the basic problem and it isn't correctable in the end. It promotes waste, it promotes inefficiency.

    The end the result is exactly what proponents of public education say they want to avoid: the poor and middle income kids get forced into a failing system with no other options, and the rich get to do what they want with their kids. They gap between them will continue to widen too, until the poor and the middle income kids have the same advantage the rich ones do. But that advantage is not massive amounts of money, though that is an advantage we'd all like to be sure. The one advantage they need which would respect everyone's rights and do the most to level the playing field of opportunities is choice. In the end that's what the rich kids really have going for them: options. And the only way to ensure everyone has options is to make people compete in offerring those options to them.

  30. Okay you say I keep looking at failed structure and then applying the Private Sector idea to it. So far though you have only given me the idea of a Private Sector but haven't actually explained how this would work or how an investor would set this up. It's like you've said "here's an idea that looks better on paper, so I'll leave it to someone else to figure out how to make it work money wise."

    Until you can also add to your theory how someone might make money of this, this is simply an insanely optimistic dream. It's like saying we should have world peace.

    What's to stop these businesses from going under? Who can guarantee that there will be enough schools to pull this off? Think how much the market goes up and down. Would you want to send your kid to school that is losing money the last three quarters and has now laid off half the Janitoral staff? Or now there's 35 kids in Bio instead of 25 because you had to fire a couple teachers to make numbers? Now my kid can fall behind because the teacher can't possibly give as much attention to al those kids. You would need more schools than McDonald's, and think how many those are. So maybe for schools you have "different brands"? How will this make education even for everyone?

    So what exactly is so wasteful, in your opinion, about Public Education? Is it just those cushy adminstration jobs? It might interest you to know that those cushy jobs are a part of the Free Economy. Principles, Superintendants, etc. are not union jobs like teachers. Their salary is set by good ol' supply and demand. Obviously if you want a well educated and compotent person to run the school, you need to compete with other school's offers right? That's exactly what they do. High salarys of superintendants are because of competition. The reason they run so high is because the pool of people with enough experience and education to have this job is small. Few people+Lots of jobs=higher pay. These cushy jobs wouldn't go away if education was privatized. People always want to work where there is more money.

    Here's a solution that is more than reasonable and would put more money back in education: Federal Caps on Superintendant/Adminstrative pay.
  

  
 

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