Tuesday, June 7, 2011

War, war, war!! Yeah, that will make us prosperous!

Krugman is at it again. During a recent appearance on ABC's "Sunday Morning," he once again made the Keynesian declaration that war is good for the economy:
“If we had the threat of war, had a military buildup, you’d be amazed at how fast this economy would recover.”
I'm not sure what we call Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and wherever else the U.S. Armed Forces are shooting people. I think I call it war, and we can see just how good it has been not only for our economy, but also the economies of the lands this government has attacked.

No, I don't think Krugman is endorsing even more military buildups and wars. (The Neo-cons, conservative Republicans, and many in the Tea Party have been beating the war drums loudly enough.)

97 comments:

Lord Keynes said...

"Krugman is at it again. During a recent appearance on ABC's "Sunday Morning," he once again made the Keynesian declaration that war is good for the economy"

He's saying that the type of huge spending involved in WWII would pull the economy out of the underemployment equilibrium it is in, not that war spending would bring that type of "prosperity" you have in a peacetime boom, or that war spending is even remotely a good thing.

No, I don't think Krugman is endorsing even more military buildups and wars.

Then why the stupid, deceptive title?

Tel said...

I can strongly recommend "The Wages of Destruction" by Tooze. It describes the economics of Germany under National Socialist government and their systematic slide from a free market economy into a centrally controlled wartime economy.

Just as Keynes and Krugman recommend, they tackled the problem of high unemployment by encouraging an arms race and pushing the unemployed into ammunition factories, aircraft factories, or just drilling them as infantry.

To some extent it worked, they found employment for workers and in the early years they were actually popular as well. However, they reached a point where the country was short of food, short of fuel, had very poor housing, and the majority of their productive output was going into the military. The means of production were privately owned, but those private owners could either cooperate with the Reich or else their property would be confiscated and given to someone who would cooperate.

Eventually the National Socialists faced the problem that the only way to get return on investment for military buildup was to start a war. That is to say that if all you have are guns and what you need is food, you must use the guns to kill someone and take their food (or sit and starve).

The result was a disaster in terms of loss of human life, but technological advancement was huge. I guess it comes down to priorities.

Lord Keynes said...

"Just as Keynes and Krugman recommend, they tackled the problem of high unemployment by encouraging an arms race and pushing the unemployed into ammunition factories, aircraft factories, or just drilling them as infantry."

"Recommend", my eye. Show me a reference to Keynes urging war as a solution to depression.

Bob Roddis said...

Krugman:

“If we had the threat of war, had a military buildup, you’d be amazed at how fast this economy would recover.”

The point of demonstrating that Krugman actually said this is to show that Krugman actually said this. It’s an absurd, preposterous and false statement and merely gives cover to the warmongers. It’s just another companion to all of the other ghastly, horrible, false and anti-freedom statements he makes.

While we’re at it, and on a similar theme, let’s examine one of Keynes’ more profound insights:

“The theory of aggregated production, which is the point of the following book, nevertheless can be much easier adapted to the conditions of a totalitarian state [eines totalen Staates] than the theory of production and distribution of a given production put forth under conditions of free competition and a large degree of laissez-faire.”

Lord Keynes said...

That Keynes passage does not show him:

(1) endorsing fascism or

(2) endorsing war.

Another waste of time.

At least Anderson has the honesty to say "No, I don't think Krugman is endorsing even more military buildups and wars", unlike your rubbish.

Lord Keynes said...

Anyway, Daniel Kuehn debunks the hordes of rubbish about that preface of Keynes':

http://factsandotherstubbornthings.blogspot.com/2010/07/keyness-foreword-to-german-edition-of.html

Suppose, for the sake of argument, that Keyens praised fascism (even though he NEVER did any such thing), that is still irrelevant to the question whether his economic theory in the General Theory is right, and it would be nothing but an ad hominem argument.

In contrast, here's Mises actually praising fascism:

"It cannot be denied that Fascism and similar movements aiming at the establishment of dictatorships are full of the best intentions and that their intervention has, for the moment, saved European civilization. The merit that Fascism has thereby won for itself will live on eternally in history. But though its policy has brought salvation for the moment, it is not of the kind which could promise continued success. Fascism was an emergency makeshift. To view it as something more would be a fatal error”

Mises, 1978 [1927]. Liberalism: A Socio-Economic Exposition (2nd edn; trans. R. Raico), Sheed Andrews and McMeel, Mission, Kansas. p. 51.

Is Mises's praxeology and economics totally discredited because of this disgraceful rubbish?

Actually, no, his praxeological arguments will stand and fall on their own merits, irrespective of his idiotic views on fascism.

ekeyra said...

Whether or not krugman is actually endorsing war, it seems a few facts slipped his mind. We're already at war in 3 different countries, we maintain over 700 military bases across the globe and we spend more on "defense" than the rest of the planet combined. In light of those facts, its truly staggering that he would consider that insufficient. How much would it take for him to say, "you know what, thats enough tanks, bombs, and depleted uranium ammunition"?

And they gave this clown a nobel prize? Oh wait, they gave obama one for peace. Nevermind, carry on.

Tel said...

That Keynes passage does not show him:

(1) endorsing fascism or

(2) endorsing war.


I never suggested that it did, please read more carefully. Krugman says that a military buildup would improve the economy... but my point was that a military buildup will push a country into using those arms. Once you get yourself into such a position, you may not endorse war at all, but you will have one regardless.

Tel said...

LK: The quote from Mises where you have carefully highlighted the first part, shows in the second part that Mises very well understood that while fascism delivers benefits in the short term, in the long term, fascism causes nothing but disaster. But wait, that's exactly what I said in my comment at June 7, 2011 4:26 AM above, and that's exactly what happened in Germany.

It is much easier for me to say this in hindsight with the help of historians, I doubt I could have seen it coming at the time. Fortunately I have the ability to learn from the mistakes of others.

Mike M said...

Whether its war or natural disasters it’s all part of the same shallow minded, simpleton, nonsensical Neo –Keynesian view that these things can be truly simulative for the economy. LK and Krugman were beamed down from the same mother ship without the benefit of understanding the basic concept of the Broken Window Fallacy.

LK if you really believe this nonsense then you should advocate a government policy of selecting a city a month in this country to destroy so we can rebuild it to create jobs and economic activity. We could keep doing that until the “economy” recovers. Brilliant!

“There is only one difference between a bad economist and a good one: the bad economist confines himself to the visible effect; the good economist takes into account both the effect that can be seen and those effects that must be foreseen.”
Bastiat, Frédéric
(1801-1850)

Lord Keynes said...

"LK if you really believe this nonsense then you should advocate a government policy of selecting a city a month in this country to destroy so we can rebuild it to create jobs and economic activity."

Straw man idiocy.
You're not converting anyone to Austrianism anytime soon.

Keep it up.

Mike M said...

LK I never said I was trying to convert anyone to anything. I am stating the fallacy of you arguments.

Your declaratory responsive statements on this blog of “straw man idiocy” or “rubbish” add nothing, and say nothing. They are the equivalent of “because I said so” provided by a parent to a seven year old and vacuous in content.

It was not straw man; it was consistent with the silly war argument. You didn’t answer the question. So answer the question. Or is all you have to offer is an empty two word declarative statement?

AP Lerner said...

"No, I don't think Krugman is endorsing even more military buildups and wars."

Then what is the point of this post?

Lord Keynes said...

""LK if you really believe this nonsense then you should advocate a government policy of selecting a city a month in this country to destroy so we can rebuild it to create jobs and economic activity."

The "nonsense" is your idea that Keyensians advocate destruction as a way of stimulus. They don't.

As I just said, even Anderson has the honesty to say "No, I don't think Krugman is endorsing even more military buildups and wars."

If you want stimulus, Keynesians advocate public infrastructure/works, social spending, education spending, R&D spending as both econoically and socially useful types of spending.

Alternatively, you could cut taxes significantly and maintain spending and impart a stimulus to the economy.

Bob Roddis said...

Kuehn is an outstanding and brilliant polemicist. No joke. I don't know what Keynes was thinking other than the unambiguous language he actually used. Such language needs no clarification. Keynesian was a technocrat. It is much easier to inflict a technocratic vision in a totalitarian state. Under laissez faire, it would be illegal. That's the purpose of the bright line of property rights. The problem of mankind is butchery and theft by government, not "structural unemployment" under laissez faire. Those bright line property rights are quite utilitarian in protecting against such butchery actually.

Mises' statement is ambiguous and needs clarification. What he was saying that the rise of fascism in Italy probably saved it from a Stalinist commie takeover followed by typical socialist butchery on a massive scale.

Lord Keynes said...

Mises' statement is ambiguous and needs clarification. What he was saying that the rise of fascism in Italy probably saved it from a Stalinist commie takeover followed by typical socialist butchery on a massive scale.

Wrong. Note his remark:

"Fascism and similar movements aiming at the establishment of dictatorships are full of the best intentions and that their intervention has, for the moment, saved European civilization. The merit that Fascism has thereby won for itself will live on eternally in history.")

He is not just talking about Italy but about "European civilization."

He also supported Dolfuss' Austro-fascism as "a quick fix to safeguard Austria’s independence—unsuitable in the long run, especially if the general political mentality did not change" (Hülsmann, 2007. Mises: The Last Knight of Liberalism, Ludwig von Mises Institute, Auburn, Ala. pp. 683–684).

So don't claim Keynes was "supporting" fascism, when it's Mises who clealry emerges as the supporter of the Italian and Austrian varieties of fascism.

Bala said...

"Then what is the point of this post?"

It was to say that Krugman sees a military build up with massive amount of resources being diverted to defence production as being good for an economy. Words like 'amazed' and 'recover' have positive connotations, you see!!

Bala said...

"So don't claim Keynes was "supporting" fascism,"

No, but it does show Keynes himself saying that his (nonsensical) ideas work better in a totalitarian set up. So, as a Keynesian, why would you not want a totalitarian set-up under which your Keynesianism would work best?

João Marcus said...

If you want stimulus, Keynesians advocate public infrastructure/works, social spending, education spending, R&D spending as both econoically and socially useful types of spending.

Yeah, it's working wonders in the US! Really, don't you ever get tired of living in a fantasy world? Unfortunately, Keynesianism will drive the whole world down to a deep, deep hole, and Keynesians will still live in a fantasy world.

Lord Keynes said...

"It was to say that Krugman sees a military build up with massive amount of resources being diverted to defence production as being good for an economy."

He doesn't.

When he says "If we had the threat of war, had a military buildup, you’d be amazed at how fast this economy would recover", the recovery he's talking about would be the closing of the output gap and fall in unemployment as resources were mobilized to fight a war.

He's not saying that type of wasteful and brutal war spending would be a "good" thing or saying he endorses it - quite the contrary, as he has said before he supports social and public works spending.

Mike M said...

I didn’t say Keynesians I said Neo-Keynesians. I didn’t say they advocated destruction; I used the analogy for the benefit of those who still believe it was just the war that brought the US out of the depression and still cling to that economic philosophy.
I didn’t say Krugman advocates war as an economic solution. My point by analogy is that he still believes that spending as a consequence of destruction is a net economic benefit.

May I suggest a little critical thinking and reading as a substitute for citations.

LK you said “If you want stimulus, Keynesians advocate public infrastructure/works, social spending, education spending, R&D spending as both economically and socially useful types of spending.”
According to whom some central planner in lieu of the free market????
You said “Alternatively, you could cut taxes significantly and maintain spending and impart a stimulus to the economy.’

How about none of the above. How about the Federal government returns to its limited enumerated powers and stay out of the marketplace picking winners and losers all in the name of some higher altruistic purpose.

Lord Keynes said...

"No, but it does show Keynes himself saying that his (nonsensical) ideas work better in a totalitarian set up."

Wrong. The real meaning of passage is described by L. Wattel:

“In this statement Keynes does not say that his theory is more applicable to a totalitarian state than to a democratic state. What Keynes says is that his macroeconomic theory of output as a whole is more easily adapted to a totalitarian state than is classical microeconomic theory of the production and distribution of a given output produced under conditions of free competition and a large measure of laissez-faire. The distinction is an important one. Keynes is comparing the usefulness of micro and macro theory in a totalitarian state. He is not comparing the usefulness of his macro theory in a totalitarian state with its usefulness in a democratic state.”
Harold L. Wattel, The Policy Consequences of John Maynard Keynes, p. 119.

Nobody bothers to quote the rest of the passage:

"Although I have, after all, worked it out with a view to the conditions prevailing in the Anglo-Saxon countries where a large degree of laissez-faire still prevails, nevertheless it remains applicable to situations in which state management is more pronounced.

It's a general theory applicable to both laissez faire systems and systems where "state management is more pronounced."

Lord Keynes said...

I didn’t say Krugman advocates war as an economic solution. My point by analogy is that he still believes that spending as a consequence of destruction is a net economic benefit

That's a non sequitur. Where does he say he thinks "spending as a consequence of destruction is a net economic benefit"? You have a reference for that or did you just pull it out of you know where?

Bob Roddis said...

I don't think we have to claim that Keynes was supporting fascism. He was just stating an obvious fact. I would go further. Keynesian aggregate demand management drives a society to fascism in a foolish attempt to fix the problems caused by it and because it undermines the essential bright line restrictions of private property and contracts.

LK has a lot of nerve calling anyone an idiot. Neither he nor APL (nor Krugie for that matter) understand the pricing process or that it is the essential core of Austrian theory or even what we mean by the term.

Lord Keynes said...

"Keynesian aggregate demand management drives a society to fascism in a foolish attempt to fix the problems caused by it and because it undermines the essential bright line restrictions of private property and contracts."

Ah, yeah, Bob Roddis, Weimar Germany's deflationary depression 1930-1933, where the government rejected what we would now call stimulus for austerity, huge spending cuts and wage and price deflation didn't drive Germany into hands of Hitler:

http://socialdemocracy21stcentury.blogspot.com/2011/06/austerity-and-weimar-republic.html.

Tell me another fable.

Mike M said...

“If we had the threat of war, had a military buildup, you’d be amazed at how fast this economy would recover.”

War (even its spending preparation) is by its very nature destructive.

LK, are you incapable of inductive/deductive reasoning and critical thinking or do you just pull youy one liners out of you know where?

Lord Keynes said...

"“If we had the threat of war, had a military buildup, you’d be amazed at how fast this economy would recover.”"

Already dealt with this:

When Krugman says "If we had the threat of war, had a military buildup, you’d be amazed at how fast this economy would recover", the recovery he's talking about would be the closing of the output gap and fall in unemployment as resources were mobilized to fight a war.

He's not saying that type of wasteful and brutal war spending would be a "good" thing or saying he endorses it - quite the contrary, as he has said before he supports social and public works spending.

That's not difficult to understand.

Mike M said...

LK, Nice toknow you and Krugman share a brain

American Patriot said...

LK

are you just a troll or Paul himself, masquerading as someone else.
Joking aside, Krugman and your kind are best described in Bastiat's broken window fallacy. Lasting, true prosperity can never be created by war or any other type of government spending. If it could, USSR (and later EU) would have become super powers.

Instead of trolling around here and sounding like Paul Junior, why don't you start your own blog. Maybe Paul will frequent it and you two can lend each other moral support.

American Patriot said...

LK

sorry I did not discover that you had a blog earlier.
I left a comment on a telling post that you had last week on classical liberals. In case you miss it, here it is:

This is a pathetic attempt at legitimizing today's left - aka progressive movement which has nothing to do with liberalism.
You are a proponent of social democracies. Nothing about social democracies is consistent with classical liberalism. Individual liberty / freedom are a pre-requisite of classical liberalism. Social democracies promote creation of rights other than natural rights (such as right to healthcare among others). You CANNOT create such rights without intruding in to natural rights of man as specified in the Declaration of Independence. Therefore social democracies are WHOLLY INCONSISTENT with classical liberalism.
Thus your pathetic attempt to legitimize the left - the progressive left which you are a part of - by making bogus, non-existing connections with classical liberalism.

Lord Keynes said...

"Nothing about social democracies is consistent with classical liberalism."

Classical liberalism isn't some unified, consistent movement: it has clear diverging and inconsistent strands.

In fact, utilitarianism came to be a major ethical theory of Classical liberalism by the 19th century, and liberals like John Stuart Mill were already making the case for state interventions on utilitarian grounds.

And "natural rights" are a fable.

Explain how rights are “natural.” The whole concept “natural” in natural rights is totally spurious: there is no mechanism in nature that forces behaviour to confirm to natural rights in the way that matter confirms to gravity naturally. Rights are nothing more than human/ethical constructs: in no sense do rights exist in nature or are caused by nature.

Rothbard’s central arguments and foundation for natural rights is taken down by Edward Feser:

Edward Feser, "Rothbard as a philosopher," August 8, 2009

http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2009/08/rothbard-as-philosopher.html

João Marcus said...

Ah, yeah, Bob Roddis, Weimar Germany's deflationary depression 1930-1933, where the government rejected what we would now call stimulus for austerity, huge spending cuts and wage and price deflation didn't drive Germany into hands of Hitler:

Oh yeah, austerity is what drove Germany into hands of Hitler. Had the government spend truckloads of money, everything would be different. Ah, the Keynesian fantasy world...

Mike M said...

LK Under you thinking you have no natural right to you own life. Brilliant!

American Patriot said...

LK:

You progressives are so predictable. I knew you were going to get mushy on me with definitions (like you guys claiming that the Constitution does not mean what originalists claim and prove by means of pointing to the D.O.L. and federalist paper - but that is a whole different issue)
What part of a philosophy committed to the ideal of limited government, liberty of individuals including freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly, and free markets isn't unified (as you say) or straight forward?
And the nerve that you have trying to point out utilitarianism as a legitimizing argumentt!
If anything, utilitarianism is statism as likes of Mills defended it. State intervention always comes at a cost to someone else's (unless of course you are a Keynesian - ooops I forgot, you are) liberties. State has no resources of its own - just those of its subjects.

I believe your confusion stems from the meaning of word liberalism. Classic liberalism as I stated above is only one form. Your form of liberalism is called state liberalism or progressive liberalism.

So you say natural rights are a fable, eh?
Whay are your rights to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness? Man made or god given rights?
I am afraid, as all progressives, you come across as a collectivist statist. Natural or god given rights are those that exist in nature and do not impose on others. Man made rights are those that require imposing on others rights (like right to your private property - be it intellectual, or material).
Just to clarify (since as all progressives you do not seem to think much at a critical level), my right to my life or freedom does not impose on anyone else. However, a right to healthcare (or a job, or food, or shelter, or anything else) requires taking from others since your beloved government does not have a money tree).
The difference is huge for those who are capable of critical thinking.

Bala said...

LK,

You just demonstrated why you are one of the most entertaining people I have or will ever know. One of the most hilarious sights is watching a person attack something he has no clue about. With our statement

"The whole concept “natural” in natural rights is totally spurious: there is no mechanism in nature that forces behaviour to confirm to natural rights in the way that matter confirms to gravity naturally. Rights are nothing more than human/ethical constructs: in no sense do rights exist in nature or are caused by nature."

you have shown that you have absolutely no understanding of what 'natural rights' are and how they are identified. Feser or whoever else may have written anything at all in an attempt to refute Rothbard or Rand, but then you are in absolutely no position to judge those works because you do not understand the very concept 'natural rights' that they are criticising. You do not even know if they are really attacking 'natural rights' or a straw-man version of it.

That in itself completely discredits any attempt by you to cite those 'works'. So, first understand what 'natural rights' are, reevaluate all your conclusions and then come back this discussion. Right now, you make no sense whatsoever.

How Keynesian!

Mike M said...

Bala,
Excessive citations are a sign of deficient intellect and lack of critical thinking. As I said earlier, this is a blog not a PhD thesis. LK hides behind his excessive citations of works he may or may not have read or even understood and one line quips to compensate for a flawed premise. He is a statist and does not respect liberty and sovereignty of the individual. Accordingly since his premise is flawed, most everything that emanates from it is flawed.

I suspect he received degrees from institutions of higher learning, but received neither real education nor ability to think critically.

Why should I respect the positions and opinions of an individual that grants no respect to my sovereignty as an individual and believes as a statist he is entitled to my property and labor to advance his utilitarian agenda? I do not.

I think you hit the nail on the head. LK is entertainment. I hope for his sake he is not delusional enough to believe this is anything more than sport when dealing with him. Sorry to sound harsh but when it comes to statists they deserve the treatment.

American Patriot said...

Talking about education in its classical sense, very few has it these days.
Almost all people are born with the ability to critically analyze issues, but this ability remains dormant unless the mind is unleashed by proper training during formative years.

In the classical sense, education is a three stage process. There is a learning stage (called the grammar stage) when children are thought how to learn. Then, there is the logic stage when we are supposed to learn cause and affect relationships (how things relate in a logical framework). Finally, in the rhetoric stage, we sharpen our eloquence in conveying ideas.

The shortcoming of many modern day school systems is that they do not effectively go past stage one – and how could they when they have more pressing things to teach like ‘Heather has two mommies’ (sarcasm!). Had they done this, we would not be reading about studies that show that substantial portions of college students enter college sorely uninformed and graduate not much better off.

How this plays in to our discussion relates to the widespread misconceptions about America and illogicalities in views held by some.

Our mediocre school system barely touches the all important formative period of our history (mid 1760s through 1789), providing no in-depth understanding of the historical figures, facts, or the founding documents themselves let alone prepare students to undertake a critical analysis of far reaching philosophical concepts that is required.

Case in point: Most Americans think of the U.S. Constitution as a stand alone guide due to lack of an integrated view of the Founding Documents. They have little understanding that it is only a Quick Guide that requires referencing the companion documents in order to form a well rounded understanding of it. The full Owner’s Manual is the collection of all founding documents: The Declaration of Independence, The Constitution, The Bill of Rights, Federalist and anti-Federalist Papers, and the 11th through 27th Amendments to the Constitution. Reading and understanding these documents collectively – as they relate to each other - demolishes all pretense that the founding fathers were racists or the U.S. Constitution is a living document that was meant to be interpreted and amended to the point of extinguishing its original intent.

This incomplete approach to fostering an understanding of the framework for our nation stems from half a century of intentional educational mismanagement.

Tel said...

Back in 2007 Krugman was more than happy to criticize Bush and the Republicans over their wars and their excessive military spending.

Even in 2009, when Obama just continued the same wars and increased defense spending, Krugman was still blaming the Republicans:

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/06/24/weaponized-keynesianism/

Nowadays, Krugman just accepts the wars, and explains how the military spending was a great economic stimulator in the 1940's

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/09/25/arsenal-of-recovery/

He even points out that US military buildup was already well underway before Japan's surprise attack. But what you won't hear is Krugman getting out and criticizing Obama's warmongering like he used to criticize Bush's warmongering only a few years ago. What you also won't hear from Krugman is that the worldwide military arms race in the late 1930's and early 1940's was what pushed the world into war.

In a nutshell, the only thing that strong central governments are good at is warfare. If it wasn't for war and the threat of war, we wouldn't need any sort of central government. The more people understand that, the more people would be careful about handing additional powers to central government.

Robert V said...

Mike,

Your analysis of LK is quite good, but have you considered that he might just be an ordinary, run-of-the-mill asshat?

American Patriot said...

LK, where are you? You've gone quiet all of a sudden. Reading furiously to come up with some response?

Bala said...

LK,

Do you deny that everything that exists has a nature of its own? Once you answer that, we can approach a discussion of 'natural rights'.

Lord Keynes said...

"I want to make it clear at the outset that my low opinion of Rothbard as a philosopher is not based on the fact that I find his arguments ultimately unpersuasive, or even on the fact that I think many of them are just flat-out bad arguments. Obviously, there are lots of important philosophers who have given unpersuasive and even bad arguments. The reason he is a bad philosopher is that he seems incapable of producing even a minimally respectable philosophical argument, by which I mean an argument that doesn’t commit any obvious fallacies or fail to address certain obvious objections ....

Here, then, is the example. It is Rothbard’s main argument for the thesis of self-ownership, which is, as I have indicated, the very foundation of his moral and political philosophy, without which his moral case against taxation and government totally collapses.


Edward Feser, "Rothbard as a philosopher," August 8, 2009

http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2009/08/rothbard-as-philosopher.html

And that from a philosopher sympatheic to Rothbrad's conclusions.

Unless you address Feser's argument, you have lost, your evasions, red herrings, and ad hominem arguments reveal your failure. Well done.


"Under you thinking you have no natural right to you own life. Brilliant! "

Man made or god given rights?
I am afraid, as all progressives, you come across as a collectivist statist.


= rhetorical red herrings
My "right" to life is perfectly defensible under utilitarian
ethics, thanks.

"That in itself completely discredits any attempt by you to cite those 'works'."

Non sequitur. Even if I no "understanding of what 'natural rights" (which is false) that wont "discredit" a citationof someone's else argunents.

"He is a statist and does not respect liberty and sovereignty of the individual. Accordingly since his premise is flawed, most everything that emanates from it is flawed" .... Why should I respect the positions and opinions of an individual that grants no respect to my sovereignty as an individual and believes as a statist he is entitled to my property and labor to advance his utilitarian agenda? I do not.


Ad homimen: dismissing arguments because of abuse.

How many fallacies can you pack into your answers?

Mike M said...

Robert. LOL I considered that but am clinging to a shred of hope and civility on the off chance that something may randomly click in for LK so that education he or his parents paid for did not go completely to waste

Naive I know, but it's a small indulgence.

Lord Keynes said...

"Do you deny that everything that exists has a nature of its own? Once you answer that, we can approach a discussion of 'natural rights'."

Define "nature".
Nature might mean "essential characteristics and qualities of a person or thing".

If so, things have "natures", certinally.

Rotbard's non sequiturs:

"Since each individual must think, learn, value, and choose his or her ends and means in order to survive and flourish, the right to self-ownership gives man the right to perform these vital activities without being hampered and restricted by coercive molestation"

do no follow at all.

"Children survive and flourish very well without choosing most of their means and ends. Some adults are quite happy to let others (parents, a spouse, government officials) choose at least some of their means and ends for them. Many physically or mentally ill people couldn’t possibly survive or flourish unless others chose their means and ends for them. Even a slave or serf could obviously survive and even flourish if his master or lord was of the less brutal sort. ....

"The claim that there are “only two alternatives” to denying the thesis of self-ownership is just obviously false. Here are some further alternatives that Rothbard fails to consider: (a) no one owns anyone, including himself; (b) God owns all of us; (c) one class of people has a right to only partial ownership of another class (e.g. the former class has a right to the labor of the latter class, but may not kill members of the latter class, or refuse to provide for their sustenance, or forbid them from marrying, etc.); (d) everyone has partial and/or unequal ownership of everyone else "

Mike M said...

Perhaps I spoke too soon. LK you're back with your citations and one line non-response responses

Perhaps when you finally leave your parents basement posting to blogs in your underwear, you can finally see how the world really works.

American Patriot said...

LK:

I am disappointed in you. Your answers are shallow and lack any intellectual merit.

Any thinking person who denies that there are god given rights is either a despot or an intellectual midget. I am afraid I know which group you fall in to.

I defined what a right is and how progressive "rights" violate those god given rights. All you responded with was beyon childish jibberish.

Lord Keynes said...

"Any thinking person who denies that there are god given rights is either a despot or an intellectual midget."

So now you are basing natural rights on the alleged existence of God?

This is an even more stupid attempt to defend them.

Mike M said...

For LK the State is God therefore all rights flow from the State. Now his postings make sense. I can only hope LK you are not in the education field infecting young minds with your nonsense. On second thought your teachings are perfect for the parasite class

Lord Keynes said...

"For LK the State is God therefore all rights flow from the State. Now his postings make sense."

Moral rights and laws are different things.

Moral rights flow from an ethical theory that can be used to properly justify them.

Mike M said...

Then answer this LK, do you have a legal and moral right to your own life independent of State fiat?

No citations please

Lord Keynes said...

"do you have a legal and moral right to your own life independent of State fiat?"

You mean do I have a right, not to be

(1) killed without justification
(2) injuted without justification
(3) imprisoned without justification.

My rights to these things can be derived from utilitarian ethics, and in no sense require natural law/rights theory.

And it is nor just the state that could violate any of these rights, private individuals could too.

Mike M said...

So it's all about moral relativism for you. "the greatest good for the greatest number". Sound familiar?

Since you worship at the utilitarian alter I guess you would be ok if the masses decided your life no longer served the needs of the many and was in fact a detriment since it consumed valuable resources. Accordingly it could be taken by them as you do not recognize an unconditional right to your own life.

I feel sorry for you as a human being. You are a tool of the statists.

American Patriot said...

Well put Mike M.

You cannot get anywhere intellectually with likes of LK.
I know too many of them.
Might as well talk to the wall. And the funny thing is that they make sense!
They'd flunk the basic logic class I had to take in H.S. decades ago.

Bala said...

LK,

"Nature might mean "essential characteristics and qualities of a person or thing" "

You are getting there, but you still fail. What is "essential"? How is one to decide what is "essential"? Possession of a head is an essential characteristic of man. Does it mean that man's nature is "a thing with a head"?

Think a little and you might still get there.

"Define "nature"."

I won't. The onus is on you to do so because you claimed that natural rights are nonsense and made some "arguments" to back it up. Besides, I usually don't educate people for free. I charge them for it.

Lord Keynes said...

"So it's all about moral relativism for you. "the greatest good for the greatest number". "

Wow. More ignorance on display. The principle of jugding actions right or wrong on the basis of their effects is not moral relativism.


'Since you worship at the utilitarian alter I guess you would be ok if the masses decided your life no longer served the needs of the many and was in fact a detriment since it consumed valuable resources."

Nope. Nor has any other utilitarian down through the ages.

Murder committed by majority vote is NOT in any way a utililtarian argument.

ekeyra said...

LK,

With all this talk of yours of utility, it somehow slipped past your understanding that utility is subjective, and thus judged individually. In this light it is impossible to apply a value of utility to a collective. Every individual will have their own subjective judgement of utility, no matter what we are discussing. In fact that's a basic principle of austrian economics, of which your lack of comprehension of is truly baffling.

Mike M said...

LK said: "Wow. More ignorance on display. The principle of jugding actions right or wrong on the basis of their effects is not moral relativism."

According to whom?

I tend to ask critical questions to further understanding and discussion. You LK tend to do citation dumps and one line quips. Who displays the real ignorance? Who displays the arrogance? You can't see the hypocrisy and inconsistency in you philosophy because you never check your premise. That sir is true ignorance.

American Patriot said...

Mike M, your last post says it all. Progressives never check their premise - never!
If they asked critical questions requiring critical thinking, they would have to come up with conflicting answers to their convictions.

LK:
You seem to be hopelessly confused about moral relativism.
Moral relativism is the view that ethical standards, morality, and positions of right or wrong are culturally based and therefore subject to a person's individual choice. We can all decide what is right for ourselves. You decide what's right for you, and I'll decide what's right for me. Moral relativism says, "It's true for me, if I believe it."
That, almost by definition, is utilitarianism. Utilitarianism is a philosophical theory of morality and "how one should act". It states that one should act so as to maximize the amount of happiness in the world.
In other words, no absolutes, no consequences, just outcomes that make us feel good are important.

Does that summarize your outlook? I bet it does whether or not you are honest enough to admit it.

One last thing: How did I guess before your post regarding god's supposed existence that you were an atheist? Easy, you progressives all fall in to the same mold; and I know enough of you guys. I personally am not a religious person - just a spiritual agnostic; but that does not stop me from embracing god given (or natural in your case) rights.
Once you define what a right is (like being left alone to live freely), then you can move on to subsequent critical issues. You have not even thought about what a right is since you make some incredibly shallow statements.

And, btw, murder committed for greater good like some in the President's circle believe (Berwick, etal. who want a NHS type system where life is judged by quality years left) is purely utilitarian.

I'll end with this: I am convinced more than ever that progressivism is a mental disease. Heck, they even discovered the gene responsible for it few months back.

Lord Keynes said...

That, almost by definition, is utilitarianism. Utilitarianism is a philosophical theory of morality and "how one should act". It states that one should act so as to maximize the amount of happiness in the world.
In other words, no absolutes, no consequences, just outcomes that make us feel good are important


Unfortunately, it is you who are deeply and laughably ignorant about basic principles in ethics. This the essence of moral relativism:

Metaethical Moral Relativism (MMR). The truth or falsity of moral judgments, or their justification, is not absolute or universal, but is relative to the traditions, convictions, or practices of a group of persons

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/moral-relativism/#ForArg

This means that a moral proposition such as

(1) Exposure of unwanted children is wrong.

has no absolute moral truth value. Its truth would be relative or different in various times and cultures.

Utilitarianism, by contrast, does NOT believe in relative truth values: it would tell you that this sentence is true: that exposure of unwanted children is wrong, in all places and all times. That is the very antithesis of moral relativism.

Try again with your laughable nonsense.

I personally am not a religious person - just a spiritual agnostic; but that does not stop me from embracing god given (or natural in your case) rights.

?? This reveals that it’s you who have would flunk a logic 101 class. If you’re “agnostic” about god, it means you don’t know whether he exists, yet you embrace “god given” natural rights!
LOL…
Give keep up the good work!

Bala said...

LK,

Just explain how you utilitarianism grapples with the immeasurable nature of utility and the impossibility of interpersonal comparison of utility. My other questions/challenges to you are also begging for answers.

American Patriot said...

Let me ask you this LK:
You quote "truth would be relative or different in various times and cultures"
You progressives love to say that our founders were bunch of racists (which is a fallacy in that a clear majority spoke out forcefully against it). Two centuries ago, according to the mores of the era, racism as an institution was not the evil that today's society sees it as. So, does that make slavery objectionable 2 centuries ago? Do you reject the absolutist argument that human freedom is sacrosanct regardless of the era you live in?
You, as a progressive, reject absolutism in favor of relativism, but only so far as it suits your arguments.

BTW, spiritual agnostics believe in a higher power though we do not question what that power might be since the question of existence of god cannot be difinitively answered. That does NOT stop us from believing that there are natural rights (god given to those who believe). We keep an open mind and as such do not reject terms like god given (though not in literal sense). I am not surprised that you cannot see that. You are just another product of the piss poor U.S. educational system of the past 5 decades that does not go past the first stage of education (learning).

Lord Keynes said...

Just explain how you utilitarianism grapples with the immeasurable nature of utility and the impossibility of interpersonal comparison of utility.

Amazing: sounds like you stopped paying any attention to anything written after the 1930s in philosophy of ethics.

You could find that answer to that question by doing 10 minutes of research on the history of utilitarianism/consequentialism:

Modern Welfare theory is historically a child of utilitarianism, but has its distinctiveness from the changes within neoclassical economics taking place mainly in the 1930s. The most important change is that sum-ranking is dropped. The stance adopted is that utility cannot be compared across individuals without making value judgements, and such judgments should be avoided. Moreover, utility cannot be cardinally measured. It becomes an ordinal concept - that of relative order. The utilitarian perspective of welfarism and consequentialism is, however, basically supported. Nevertheless, it is important to observe that these concepts take on a somewhat different meaning since the core concept defining both - the utility concept - is changed in content .... utility becomes defined in terms of a preference index, as an individual ranking of goods. As such it shifts to a purely formal concept …. The welfare rule applied in modern welfare theory is the Paretian one. This is a logical move since sum-ranking is rejected. The Paretian concept avoids all interpersonal comparison.

Arild Vatn, Institutions and the environment, pp. 197-198

Try again.

Lord Keynes said...

“Two centuries ago, according to the mores of the era, racism as an institution was not the evil that today's society sees it as. So, does that make slavery objectionable 2 centuries ago”

It WAS objectionable 2 centuries ago and in ALL places and times – which is the standard utilitarian position.

” BTW, spiritual agnostics believe in a higher power though we do not question what that power might be since the question of existence of god cannot be difinitively answered.”

Then you can’t even know the nature of the power: it could be an amoral or even immoral power, and you have no answer to such a question except to say “we do not question what that power might”.

This is a bizarre logical contradiction – saying you don’t know “what that power might be since the question of the existence of god cannot be definitively answered” and then saying you have a firm foundation for god given natural rights!! LOL.

And how is this for a truly bizarre violation of the laws of logic:

Your statement 1
“That does NOT stop us from believing that there are natural rights (god given to those who believe).

Your statement 2
We keep an open mind and as such do not reject terms like god given (though not in literal sense) [!!!]

You are saying natural rights are (1) god given, but then (2) not god given in a literal sense. In what sense then???

American Patriot said...

Aaaah LK, going back and forth with you is prematurely aging me. The terms god given and natural rights are used interchangably - depending on one's beliefs. One does not negate the other. Why is that so difficult to grasp?

Just read over the following and answer which statements do you find to be objectionable:

1) There are absolute truths in life. (Just leave god out of this discussion)
2) These absolute truths include natural rights of the individual to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness.
3) There is no justification, philosophical or otherwise, for violation of these rights under any circumstances (at least no more than there is justification for slavery).
4) Government/man made rights such as healthcare intrude in to this sacred area as they require violating the absolute rights of men.
5) Therefore progressive policies are violation of basic human rights.

Lord Keynes said...

(2) These absolute truths include natural rights of the individual to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness.

And your justification for that assertion is non-existent.

"The terms god given and natural rights are used interchangably

So now all "god given rights" means in your statements above is "natural rights", and you are not trying to appeal to god to justify the existence of these natural rights?

If so, then (again) not one shred of argumment is offered to prove there is any such thing as natural rights.

Anonymous said...

LK,

Please stop hiding behind names and explain how the Paretian concept helps a utilitarian judge the moral soundness of a hungry man stealing a loaf of bread from a rich baker.

Bala

P.S - You are yet to answer many of my questions on this and the previous thread. Stop dodging the difficult questions.

American Patriot said...

So you claim that there is no right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness? So, I can come and enslave you and that will be ok?
If you believe that, you are beyond help.

Lord Keynes said...

So you claim that there is no right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness?

Nope.

The ethically-defensible right not to be subject to arbitrary and unjustifiable murder, injury, imprisonment, and theft of your property can be defended perfectly well on a utilitarian/consequentialist ethics, and that right is a morally/ethically justified idea and principle, not some mythical "natural" right. There is nothing in nature that gives you any such right.

Natural rights theory is a blatantly false theory.

And those principles above can also be defended by those who defend ethical systems other than natural rights/natural law:

(1) Rawl's human rights ethics, (2) contractarian ethics
(3) Categorical Imperative ethics (Kantian ethics)
(4) Pluralistic deontology, the non-absolutist ethics of W.D. Ross
(5) Utilitarian Kantian Principle of James Cornman.

http://socialdemocracy21stcentury.blogspot.com/2010/10/economics-and-ethics-brief-survey.html.

Seriously, it's like you know precisely zero about philosophy of ethics apart from the fictitious natural rights theory.

American Patriot said...

Ahhh, the typical progressive weasely way of complicating what really is a straight forward subject. You do not disappoint your kind.

Natural right = your definition of ethically defensible right. You think that inserting the words ethically-defensible makes you look intellectual but your steadfast refusal to see that what we mean is the same thing really shows your inability to think.

With that, I am out of this discussion. I think I'll go play with my seven year old because he can think more critically and clearer than you.

Anonymous said...

It is not the war but the ramped up spending that accompanies a war that provides a stimulus. They are not recommending war just using the example of the stimulus it provides.

Your example of Iraq and Afghanistan does not work now. As much as the US is still spending, the spending level is ramping downwards so it is not a stimlus. During the 2002-7 period under Bush the wars provided a huge stimulus. Only Bush's misguided economic policy used huge deficit spending to stimulate the economy during a growth cycle. Keynes' policy was not for deficit spending during times of economic growth which instead should be a time to build a surplus and to restrain inflation with measured interest rate increases, reduced government spending and tax increases. Deficit spending is the policy for a depressed economy to offset falling demand when consumers restrict their spending to pay down their debts. The Republicans policy over the last decade has been ass backwards, deficit spending like drunkards during a growth cycle and then demanding a choking reduction of spending during a weak recovery throwing the economy back into a slump. They don't want a good economy on Obama's watch and are willing to punish all of us to make sure it doesn't happen.

American Patriot said...

If you think that the war spending is what provided stimulus between 2002-7, you are sadly mistaken. It was the 2003 tax cuts (esp. cap gains). The 150 billion or so war spending was nothing (to a 13 trillion economy).
You must be another Keynesian.

Another factoid: GWB deficits averaged under 200 billion a year - bad but nothing compared to 1.3 trillion deficits of the past two years running.

You can't stimulate demand much. Only supply side tax cuts work because if demand is weak, the reason is mainly psychological. What did QE2 and the stimulus of the past 2 years accomplish? Nothing significant. Why? Because we have a crisis of confidence. If businesses do not expand, you can provide all the stimulus you want on the demand side and you will get nothing in return.

How do I know? Look at the results of supply side stimulus in 1961 (JFK), 1983 (Reagan), 1995 (Clinton), and 2003 (GWB). All were followed by 5-8% GDP growth rates. We have an 800 billion stimulus plus QE2 and we get 1.8% growth in the last quarter - and most of that is due to inventory build-up? Piss poor.
Where is your evidence of demand side stimulus working?

Also, may I remind you that Democrats have controlled the congress for 4.5 years (since 2006 election) and the WH for 2.5 years. What is their excuse? They could have done whatever they wanted to.

You progressives are truly pathetic. Give me some proof of Keynesianism working. I am waiting...............

Bala said...

LK,

"Natural rights theory is a blatantly false theory."

A statement based on complete vacuity about the meaning of the word 'natural' as used in the term 'natural rights'.

I am still eagerly awaiting your exposition on what the word 'natural' in 'natural rights' means according to you.

Lord Keynes said...

Give me some proof of Keynesianism working.

LOL... "Reaganonomics" after 1982 was nothing but conservative Keynesianism:

http://socialdemocracy21stcentury.blogspot.com/2011/02/reaganomics-analysis.html

Reagan increased discretionary spending and ran huge deficits. A tax cut while maintaining spending or increasing it is the ESSENSE of Keynesianism :).

Bala said...

LK,

"LOL... "Reaganonomics" after 1982 was nothing but conservative Keynesianism:"

And it worked? Are you redefining the term 'worked'?

Lord Keynes said...

It resored positive GDP growth and brought unemployment down from 10% to nearly 5%, after the disaster of Volcker's monetarism.

The trouble with Reagan was

(1) tax cuts were skewed to the upper income brackets, and they would have had a better effect by going to lower and middle income earners,

(2) the financial dereguation was a mistake.

(3) military spending was wasteful, and increases in spending would have been better spent on public infrastructure and spocial spending; but for political reasons Republicans were in favour of the military spending

Tel said...

Quote from LK above:

The welfare rule applied in modern welfare theory is the Paretian one. This is a logical move since sum-ranking is rejected. The Paretian concept avoids all interpersonal comparison.

I'm happy with this as a theory, but never in all my life have I seen such a thing applied in practice, nor even promoted by advocacy groups.

To even implement it would require that every member of society be personally able to veto any new law or regulation. Yeah, like that's ever going to happen.

American Patriot said...

LK:

you better change your name from Lord Keynes to Lord-Know-Nothing.

Under Reagan, federal expenses went up due to having to rebuild the military that was decimated and entitlements. Nevertheless, non-defense spending did fine. Expenditures wise, when R left office, US (feds) was spending 21% of the GDP as opposed to 22% in his first year.
His tax cuts were supply side and that is why the economy grew at 7% (as opposed to 1.8% now).

Keynesian policies do not work and have never worked as even Keynes admitted to it over luncheon with the head of Bank of England. If production is not there, neither are jobs, nor is consumer confidence to spend. It is as simple as 1+1=2. Ooops, I forgot, you guys flunked basic arithmetic in 1st grade.

You progressives surely excell in bastardizing definitions, don't you?!

Lord Keynes said...

Under Reagan, federal expenses went up due to having to rebuild the military that was decimated
??
That’s what I just said!:

(1) Under Reagan total government spending (in real terms) rose in every year in the first 5 years;

(2) Reagan refused to balance spending and ran large deficits;

(3) his tax cuts were combined with increases in spending and large deficits,

This is nothing but Keynesian economic stimulus, and you are clearly an ignoramus for not understanding that. Even the Austrian libertarians recognise Reagan as a big spending Keynesian, Rothbard argued:
” How well did Reagan succeed in cutting government spending, surely a critical ingredient in any plan to reduce the role of government in everyone's life? In 1980, the last year of free-spending Jimmy Carter the federal government spent $591 billion. In 1986, the last recorded year of the Reagan administration, the federal government spent $990 billion, an increase of 68%. Whatever this is, it is emphatically not reducing government expenditures.
Sophisticated economists say that these absolute numbers are an unfair comparison, that we should compare federal spending in these two years as percentage of gross national product. But this strikes me as unfair in the opposite direction, because the greater the amount of inflation generated by the federal government, the higher will be the GNP. We might then be complimenting the government on a lower percentage of spending achieved by the government's generating inflation by creating more money. But even taking these percentages of GNP figures, we get federal spending as percent of GNP in 1980 as 21.6%, and after six years of Reagan, 24.3% ….
Even less edifying is the spectre of Reaganomists who had inveighed against deficits—that legacy of Keynesianism—for decades. Soon Reaganite economists, especially those staffing economic posts in the executive and legislative branches, found that deficits really weren't so bad after all ….
The supply-siders then retreated to their current, fall-back position, which is quite frankly Keynesian; namely deficits don't matter anyway, so let's have cheap money and deficits; relax and enjoy them.

http://mises.org/daily/1544

Lord Keynes said...

And as for total government (state, local or federal) or total federal spending as a % of GDP, under Reagan it rose from 1981 to 1987/1988. The slight fall from 1987 was quite natural as the economy was growing and spending leveled off.

The very same type of falls in spending as a % of GDP happened under other Keynesian presidents like Truman, Eisenhower, Johnson, and Nixon, when the economy was booming and fiscal stimulus was pulled back, as you can see here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Us_gov_spending_history_1902_2010.png

In fact, it was under Clinton that government spending as a % GDP fell significantly

Bala said...

LK,

Given that you have GDP defined as C+I+G+X-M, it does not take 1/2 a brain to realise that a massive increase in G will lead to a surge in GDP. That was not my question. My question was "Did it work?". To say that because government spending improved GDP, Reaganomics worked is rather childish because government spending is a part of GDP.

Lord Keynes said...

"Given that you have GDP defined as C+I+G+X-M, it does not take 1/2 a brain to realise that a massive increase in G will lead to a surge in GDP."

Then you had better tell that to "American Patriot"! He'll be devastated...

"To say that because government spending improved GDP, Reaganomics worked is rather childish because government spending is a part of GDP."

And Reagan's fiscal poliyc via tax cuts and increased spending stimulated private production and output:

(1) there were 8 years of expansion in real output

(2) real output and real GDP rose with significant increases in I and C, NOT just G, idiot.

(3) 17 million jobs were created.

Just as in other expansions caused by fiscal stimulus.

Bala said...

OK. And then? Continue the story.

p.s. Can you spell B-U-B-B-L-E or I-N-F-L-A-T-I-O-N-A-R-Y B-O-O-M (inflation being defined as an increase in money supply)?

American Patriot said...

LK is effectively saying 'Reagan era spending increases - not the supply side tax cuts - were responsible for the boom of the era.

Can you say Post hoc ergo propter hoc? A prime example of such logical fallacy. Brought to you by progressive minds.

LK, how then do you explain the current situation after two of the largest federal budget increases in history (on top of a 600 billion QE2)? Where is the growth? Hmmm?

Lord Keynes said...

"LK is effectively saying 'Reagan era spending increases - not the supply side tax cuts - were responsible for the boom of the era."

Nope. Learn to read.

(1) cutting taxes
in COMBINATION with
(2) increases in spending

impart fiscal stimulus to an economy. Clear?

Where is the growth? Hmmm?

hahaha...

There has been growth in EVERY quarter in the US since Q3 2009, when the stimulus kicked in:

http://www.tradingeconomics.com/united-states/gdp-growth

Have a look at the graph..

Anonymous said...

American Patriot says that supply side tax cuts worked even in the face of the disastrous economic collapse that Bushism produced. Yes, those tax cuts sure did work, so well that when Bush left office the economy was hemoraging jobs at 700,000 per month.

Supply side tax cuts did not "trickle down" nor did its rising tide "lift all boats". It completely and utterly failed right before your eyes but religious adherence to a failed ideology prevents even the most rudimentary and obvious analysis.

Obama's deficits are 80% Bush's legacy. Bush's unfunded tax cuts lowered rates that were already historically low, expended nearly a trillion dollars on the elective wars as Bin Laden (and neocons) hoped, spent billions more on the unfunded Medicare Part D Pharma corporate subsidies, and his recession massively reduced government revenues while causing increased safety spending. Then Bush bequeathed his massive structural deficits to Obama and the true believer ideologue fanatics blame Obama because he hasn't cleaned up Bush's disaster in two years. What a fool.

American Patriot said...

LK:

you are falsely linking the increase in spending part to the growth. That is the Ad hoc part!
It is like saying 'the moon comes out at night, therefore moon must be the cause of darkness'.

If your assumption was correct, where is the 7-8% gdp growth along with jobs growth? Are you pointing to the current anemic growth (and I am being generous) in those categories?
Don't make me laugh by comparing the two recoveries.
A lot more stimulus than in Reagan era, yet a bare fraction of the recovery.
This is the best you can do?!

Anonymous:

GWB was not great and I am the first one to criticize him (for stuff like Medicare Part D, etc.)BUT get your facts straight. The crisis of 2008 is one of many parents - mainly the Fed policies of the past decade, but also government meddling as in CRA related events and poor SEC oversight among others.

Bushes worst deficit was 400 billion (excluding the TARP that has been paid back on the most part) and average deficit under 200 billion. Yes, revenues dwindled in 2008 but look at what happened to expenditures under Obama - up nearly 30% in each of the years he presided.
I am afraid you cannot lay this on his doorstep.

In the overall scheme of things, entitlements are the problem - Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, variety of welfare programs) AND ALL OF THOSE ARE PROGRESSIVE IDEALS. If we did not have likes of FDR, LBJ, Nixon, and a few others, we would be just fine.

You are so ignorant that you make LK look like a genious.
I can cite you dozens of data points to show supply side successes but you couldn't comprehend it.

Anonymous said...

Again, the result of supply side successes are totally evident in the Bush Great Recession and, for that matter, the 1991 recession at the end of the Reagan-Bush I Presidencies.

If you didn't have safety net spending maintaining some demand the economy would have spiraled into deflation and is still at risk due to the supply side nonsense. You cannot have a healthy economy when all the policies favor a narrow elite and 80% of population have falling incomes thus reducing demand and undermining the economy for everyone. Policies that increase the health of the middle class, who unlike the rich will spend their incomes back into the economy, is the way to increase demand and improve the economy. The economic pendulum needs to move back to a balance, not just favor the mega wealthy.

Clinton increased taxes modestly in his 1993 budget and the economy expanded for the next 8 years, one of the longest and strongest expansions of the 20 th Century. The documented results of supply side policies that we have all experienced since 2008 when Bush policies sent the the economy careening off a cliff are examples of the total and utter defeat of your philosophy.

Dennis said...

"If you want stimulus, Keynesians advocate public infrastructure/works, social spending, education spending, R&D spending as both econoically and socially useful types of spending."

By what standard do you determine what is "socially useful" and what is not? What entitles you to loot the capital of a productive human being and employ it on some project that you consider "useful"? What on earth is "social spending" other than a sweet-sounding catch-all phrase to justify the blatant destruction of capital on money-losing ventures?

American Patriot said...

Dennis:

you are talking to certifiable collectivists here. Don't ask such silly questions. Of course what is socially useful spending is the kind that will get the collectivists more votes by creating incrementally more entitlement mentality among the public with little inclination to be productive. They are outstanding in one thing: robbing the souls of people of any initiative to be self sufficient beings.

Anonymous said...

"Loot the capital of productive human beings" such as Lloyd Blankfein and John Paulson and other hedgies that manipulate financial assets, pretending they add value when their brilliant CDO and phony derivative schemes sucked trillions from the real economy, impoverished millions all while they laughed their way to the bank. Productive human beings my ass. Productive as parasites lobbying Congress to tax hedge fund earnings at 15% while secretaries, cops and firemen pay much more. They are societies leaches. We should forensically audit them, tax the windfall earnings, and when the deceits are uncovered, lock them up.

American Patriot said...

Anonymous sure has a funny definition of the word leaches.
As a good little marxist wannabe socialist that he is, he tries hard to point to the few bad apples in society to justify collectivism.

Your days of smugness are numbered as your hero, BHO is about to get kicked out of the office on his rear end.

Anonymous said...

So opposition to systemic corruption and political malfeasance = Marxism.

That is quite consistent with a philosophy that serves only a tiny elite while the vast majority suffer the consequences of that puerile Randian utopianism.

American Patriot said...

Are you calling free market capitalism corrupt? I believe you are mixing it up with crony capitalism - the darling of all big government proponents (including many Republicans).

Free market system serves all, not a few. It is few that succeed wildly as outcomes tend to favor the few who are most capable (motivation, drive, intellect wise) As good little marxist you want equality of outcome. That is par for course.

libertarian89 said...

@anon(the statist one, spewing these nonsensical left wing talking points that have no basis in reality what so ever)

This anonymous statist is even worse than LK. Wow, and that’s really saying something.

Unfunded tax cuts? Really? Letting people keep more of their income in the form of marginal tax rate reductions has to be paid for? How so? Isn’t the money there’s to begin with? So let me get this strait, by taking less income from people and letting them keep more of it, that is somehow cutting them a check and has to be paid for?


So it costs the government money to not tax me? It costs the government money to let me keep me income?

If I stole your wallet with 100 in it, and gave it back to you with ten dollars left, did I just “give” you ten dollars? No, the money was yours to begin with, its just that I didn’t take it from you. I sure as hell didn’t cut you a check that has to be “paid for”.

In other words, only if you view the income of individuals as property of the government do you view tax rate reductions as having to be “paid for.” That is, if the government is nice enough to throw you a few crumbs after it eats into your paycheck.

Bush was a spend thrift, and I condemn him for it. However, well into the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Medicare part B, and all the tax cuts, the deficit in 2007 was only about 250 billion. So how were all these huge drivers of the so called deficit now that Obama inherited only responsible for a 250 billion dollar budget deficit under Bush in 2007?

Bottom line is the bailouts under both Bush and Obama, and both Bush’s and Obama’s stimulus packages heavily contributed to the deficit. Obama inherited a deficit and made it all that much worse by doubling down on the foolish things Bush did with wars, stimulus, bailouts, and more government spending overall.

Yes the recession helped choke off revenues, but Bush certainly didn’t cause the housing bubble and subsequent bust.Neither did "republican supply side policies" either.

How can you attribute tax rate reductions that happened 8 and 10 years ago, that all income brackets received by the way, as somehow being responsible for our current economic malaise?

The job losses at the end of Bush’s term were primarily a result of the bursting of the housing bubble, and subsequent recession and financial crisis that ensued.

The job losses certainly were not caused by any tax cut that happened in the beginning part of the decade.


Oh man, if only taxes were higher, especially on those evil greedy rich people, then of course those job losses would have never happened! Let’s just tax and spend our way into prosperity! Just lke Clinton did rightt?

Lets go after those evil rich, greedy people!Tax them into submission! (BTW, the top two percent pay over 50 % of the total taxes, so the wealthy already pay more than their fair share)

Anon, you are an absolute unapologetic statist. You probably watch those cooks on MSLSD like Rachel Madcow and are spoon the fed leftist garbage you are regurgitating.

Anonymous said...

It is you that are the freeloader (or the freeloader's dupe) hoping to extract more benefits for the crony class and the elite top 1% that dominates Congress and keeps the corporate subsidies flowing, thus increasing the the highest levels of inequality since 1929.

You whine about taxes that are at the lowest rate in many decades all while enjoying the benefits of government programs that benefit the well off far more than the poor, with huge "Keynesian" military spending, huge corporate subsidies. The US has the most modest social safety net spending of all developed nations. Your ideological fixation prevents you from examining any evidence that does not reinforce your case.

ekeyra said...

Anon,

If I abhor military action for the unneccessary, unjustified death and destruction it brings abroad, and the hatred it fosters towards this country, how exactly am I "enjoying" that particualr government benefit?

"You whine about taxes that are at the lowest rate in many decades"

"Should five per cent appear too small, Be thankful I don't take it all. " - RIngo Starr. Yes, yes how dare anyone complain about how much of their money the government allows them to keep. We all know its the governments money anyway and anything they generously allow us to retain for our own use is a benevolent gift.

Major_Freedom said...

Lord Keynes, please read my responses to your posts here:

http://www.reddit.com/r/Major_Freedom/comments/i0ds5/response_to_lord_keynes_june_15th_2011/