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Official BBO Hijacked Thread Thread No, it's not about that

#3401 User is offline   Chas_P 

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Posted 2019-May-08, 17:54

View Postjohnu, on 2019-May-08, 17:14, said:

I've made fun of many Republican politicans in the past. Here's one more WTF moment from a repugnant politician.

GOP state legislator attacks vaccine scientist on Twitter, accusing him of self-enrichment, ‘sorcery’

Equating vaccinations with sorcery,


Indeed, let's bring back bloodletting and astrology to medicine so we can bring the USA back to the glorious days of the dark ages.


Yes, it's a shame that there are some Texas politicians who are nutzoid. I wish they could all be perfectly normal like Beto who has accurately forecast the end of the world in 2030.

#3402 User is online   y66 

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Posted 2019-May-08, 18:23

Matt Yglesias asks

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Remember when Trump’s sister abruptly retired from her job as a federal judge to block an inquiry into tax evasion that she and her brother took part in?

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#3403 User is online   y66 

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Posted 2019-May-08, 19:49

From Trump Faces Pressure From N.Y. Lawmakers Over Tax Returns by Jesse McKinley and Eileen Sullivan at NYT:

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Taking aim at President Trump, New York lawmakers voted on Wednesday to create a pathway for congressional committees to obtain the president’s state tax returns, potentially opening another avenue to shake loose information that he has long concealed.

The bill, passed by the Democrat-controlled State Senate, does not explicitly mention Mr. Trump, but there was little question that he was the focus: Mr. Trump has refused to release his tax returns, bucking a common practice of presidents for the past four decades.

The significance of the bill’s passage was underscored by a New York Times investigation published on Tuesday that disclosed that Mr. Trump had reported more than $1 billion in core business losses from 1985 and 1994, according to tax information obtained by The Times.

The Times found that in some years, Mr. Trump appeared to have lost more money than any other single taxpayer — a far cry from the president’s cultivated image as a self-made billionaire and master deal maker.

The findings drew angry denunciation from Mr. Trump, who said in a pair of Twitter posts on Wednesday that showing “losses for tax purposes” was considered a “sport” among real estate developers like himself.

A tax return from New York could contain much of the same financial information as a federal return. If it becomes law, the bill would authorize the commissioner of the New York Department of Taxation and Finance to release any state tax return requested by a leader of one of three congressional committees — the House Ways and Means Committee, the Senate Finance Committee and the Joint Committee on Taxation — for any “specified and legitimate legislative purpose.”

Is this anyway to treat a favorite son?
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#3404 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2019-May-08, 20:24

View PostChas_NoDignity_NoSelfRespect_NoIntegrity, on 2019-May-08, 17:54, said:



Continues to embarrass himself
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#3405 User is online   y66 

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Posted 2019-May-09, 06:50

From How to make sense of the Trump boom by David Leonhardt at NYT:

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You’ve no doubt seen the headlines: The unemployment rate is at its lowest level in nearly 50 years. Wages are rising at a decent clip. President Trump is taking credit, and his critics are nervous that this apparent Trump boom may help him win re-election.

How should you make sense of all this? I have three suggestions:

1. The economy really has improved.

Last summer, I wrote about a wage slump: Although the economy was growing, the average hourly wage for private-sector workers was increasing at only about the same rate as inflation. Rising gas prices were a big reason. Since then, wage growth has picked up a bit, as the unemployment rate has continued to fall, and inflation has dropped noticeably.

Posted Image

The result is a clear rise in wages, as you can see in the yellow line above. That’s good news. Americans need a raise. But as the chart shows, the recent raise doesn’t reflect some wholly new dynamic in the job market. It’s more about inflation, which can be volatile, than nominal wages.

Perhaps even more notably, the chart shows that the recent wage gains are nothing remarkable. The increases in 2015 were larger.

2. Trump’s policies have lifted short-term growth.

I didn’t like his tax cut, but it did inject a whole lot of money into the economy. That money has boosted economic growth in recent months. Paul Krugman explained the dynamic in a recent column, called “The Economics of Donald J. Keynes.”

Trump’s economic policy is also the subject of the new episode of “The Argument” podcast. Ross Douthat, Michelle Goldberg and I have some disagreements, but we all agree the economy is enjoying a temporary jolt right now.

3. There are reasons to think it won’t last.

The federal government isn’t likely to pass a big tax cut again this year, which means the stimulative effects will start to wear off. There are already some signs of a potential slowdown: As good as the latest G.D.P. report was, even it offered reasons to think growth would soon
slow, as Jason Furman of Harvard noted.

And although inflation isn’t about to spike, it does seem to be rising. Gas prices are again a big factor. After falling late last year, they’ve risen again this year.

The political effects

You should always view economic forecasts with extreme skepticism. It’s virtually impossible to know with any confidence where the economy is headed.

I think the most likely situation in 2020 is that the economy will be neither a big help nor a big problem for Trump. It will probably keep growing, but not as strongly as it has over recent months. Even more important, most Americans have endured more than a decade of disappointing G.D.P. growth and even worse wage growth. Workers have lost so much bargaining power that even a very low unemployment rate no longer guarantees strong wage growth. A few good months have not left workers feeling flush.

With all that said, I want to acknowledge the possibility that the economy will do better than now seems likely, and that Trump will be able to base his re-election campaign on its strength. In that case, as Bret Stephens has argued, Democrats will need to figure out how to explain why he still doesn’t deserve a second term.

Presidents may have limited control over the economy’s movements, but citizens often vote as if presidents deserve the credit or the blame.

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#3406 User is online   y66 

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Posted 2019-May-09, 08:03

From Make modern family planning available to all by Barbara Rogers in Hastings, E Sussex in a letter to the editor at FT:

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Of course it is quite right to highlight the catastrophic loss of species and the biosphere generally, due to human activity. But all the news reports are taking for granted that the human population will continue to grow. This does not have to be the case.

We have the means to offer safe and effective contraception to everyone who needs it. Yet double standards apply: in the prosperous countries like ours, we can take it for granted — and even have back-up termination services for unwanted pregnancies. In most of the poorest countries, and the poorest areas, modern family planning is being blocked and the result is that 40 per cent of pregnancies worldwide are unplanned. They are often a serious risk to the woman’s life and health, and if brought to term they produce babies who have little prospect of a healthy and productive life. This is at the root of the increase in population numbers.

It is critically important that we enable women and families worldwide to access good family planning and so stabilise their numbers. However, we face a ferocious opposition of sectarians, racists and some fundamentalists who pressurise “their” women to have as many children as is physically possible.

There are also many who operate this way behind the banner of religious ideology. The Vatican hierarchy, and some evangelical churches and sects of all major religions, have put massive resources into this.

The Vatican’s Holy See, especially, has devoted its entire diplomatic force and conservative hierarchy worldwide to pressurise governments and especially the UN and its agencies to block modern family planning. Their own congregations, given the chance, have rejected this doctrine and so they seek to impose it on the world through political means.

No mention of the opposition of BBO Trumpniks? Perhaps she thinks they are not ferocious.
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#3407 User is online   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-May-09, 08:29

https://www.rawstory...-a-libertarian/

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My sobriety from libertarianism did not result from a dramatic rock bottom moment, merely an awakening back into the reality I had earlier accepted; a fresh, but familiar realization that individuals myopically pursuing their own interests have no solution to ecological catastrophe, thousands dying for lack of health insurance, lethal disparities in the public education system, and the unending terror and devastation of racism

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter. / "I need ammunition, not a ride." Zelensky
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#3408 User is online   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-May-10, 09:55

My grandest hope is for every lawmaker who voted for Alabama's new abortion ban legislation, for the governor who signed it into law, and for every Alabama voter who sent those same legislators and governor to office to have a 15-year-old daughter who gets pregnant.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter. / "I need ammunition, not a ride." Zelensky
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#3409 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2019-May-10, 17:50

Russia's Putin scores 8 goals in exhibition hockey game

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The Russian leader took to the ice on Friday in what has become an annual tradition. He played on the "Legends" team alongside Russian hockey stars such as Slava Fetisov and Pavel Bure.

The opposing goalie accidentally stopped one of Putin's shots. He is now on his way to a Siberian gulag for an extended "vacation".
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#3410 User is online   y66 

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Posted 2019-May-19, 09:07

From Sam Sifton at NYT Cooking:

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Good morning. The microwave in my kitchen is also the light above the stove. It runs the vent that pulls smoke from the cooktop out into the yard. I use the machine to warm flour tortillas, to heat half-and-half for coffee, sometimes to melt butter. It’s very good for turning cold pizza into a breakfast snack. I rely on its clock.

The other day, its keypad stopped working. A code appeared in the clock face: “SE.” I looked at that for a while and saw myself pulling the thing out of the wall to replace it with another cheap plastic fan-tool that can explode sticks of butter and turn cardboard pizza into puddles of goo. I thought about what that would cost ($300?).

Then I turned to Google. Thirty seconds later, I was watching a man named Joe Devlin tear his machine apart, fixing the same problem to the benefit of all. I rustled up a screwdriver and an air duster and got to work. Now my microwave works again and even if the world is a dark and terrible place most of the time, even if we’re divided as a nation, even if it’s hard sometimes to imagine that things will be all right for our children and their children, there are still Samaritans out there using narrative to help one another, and that left me smiling all week. American self-reliance is rarely self-taught.

What’re you cooking this week?

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#3411 User is online   y66 

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Posted 2019-May-21, 18:32

From Road Tripping With Diana Kennedy by Tejal Rao at NYT:

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SAN ANTONIO — In a quiet strip mall off highway 85, the British-born author Diana Kennedy stepped out of the car and into a hot parking lot, cursing.

Not so long ago, Ms. Kennedy practically lived on the road, traveling the Mexican countryside in her pickup truck to research her cookbooks. But now that she was 96, a road trip was hell on her artificial hips.

Ms. Kennedy started her career with “The Cuisines of Mexico” in 1972. The plurality of that title became the foundation of her work: reporting on the country’s culinary diversity, meticulously recording regional recipes and crediting them to home cooks, contextualizing food with the kinds of observations more commonly found in the work of botanists, anthropologists and historians.

Eight books and half a century later, Ms. Kennedy is protective of her legacy. When the University of Texas at San Antonio asked to acquire her many hundreds of slides, notes and scrapbooks, and to restore her small collection of 19th-century Mexican cookbooks, she was thrilled, but there was no way she was going to sit around at home, waiting for the materials to arrive in Texas by mail.

“My work, my books, they’re a part of myself,” she said, adjusting her oversize black sunglasses in the passenger seat. “Would you ship your life off with a messenger service? No!”

Friends took turns driving Ms. Kennedy and her work on a two-day journey that started at her home in the countryside of Michoacán, in western Mexico, and ended over 800 miles north in San Antonio, where a team from the university was waiting.

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Ms. Kennedy brought up her age a few times on the trip, though she never got sentimental or nostalgic. She stressed that she did not intend to live past 100, or become a “burden” to anyone.

She is old enough to have lost many of her professional contemporaries, including the great cookbook authors Marcella Hazan, Elizabeth David and Julia Child. When she reached the library, she did her best Child impression, to the delight of the archivists.

“Diana, you and I are no beauties,” she said, throwing her voice into a throaty, Julia-like flutter, repeating what Child once told her. “We need to be made up.”

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Long before she was a cookbook writer, Ms. Kennedy lived through World War II and the Nazi invasion of Europe. At 17, she joined the Women’s Timber Corps, spending her days in Wales with other civilians, cutting down trees with an ax, making her small, daily contribution toward the war effort. To supplement rations, she roasted potatoes and onions, and fished for trout.

“I learned everything from wartime,” she said in the car. There is still nothing more criminal to Ms. Kennedy than apathy, nothing ruder than waste.

A sense of political and ecological activism has been woven into her daily life for decades. She has spoken publicly about washing and reusing every single plastic bag that comes her way, collecting and recycling rainwater, and growing her own coffee beans at her home outside the city of Zitácuaro, about 100 miles west of Mexico City. It is how she believes everyone should live.

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#3412 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2019-May-21, 22:37

Lying Mitch the Hypocrite McConnell has added a new moniker to his list of titles. After personally leading Senate Republicans in allowing sanctions against Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska (see Mueller report) to be dropped, his home state was rewarded with a 200 million dollar contract from Russia.

Russia's Rusal was sanctioned by the US. Now it's investing $200 million in a Kentucky mill

I tip my hat to Lying Mitch the Hypocrite Russian Bribe Master McConnell on selling out the rest of the USA to bring a few jobs to Kentucky. Dennison and Putin certainly appreciate your patriotism. In other news, Wendy Vitter, who was totally incompetent in her Senate hearings, was appointed as a Federal district judge after McConnell pushed and lobbied for a confirmation vote for her. Vitter's husband, former Senator David Vitter, was involved in a well publicized prostitution scandal and now lobbies for Russian interests. David is the one who let McConnell know about the upcoming 200 million investment.

Who said you don't need friends in low places?
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#3413 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2019-May-22, 03:18

HUD Chief Ben Carson Needs Congress To Explain Basic Housing Terms

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Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson raised eyebrows Tuesday when he struggled to describe basic terms related to the agency he oversees during a hearing before a congressional panel.

The former neurosurgeon, who had zero experience in housing before President Donald Trump nominated him to lead HUD in December 2016, appeared visibly flustered while answering questions about his department’s policies before the House Financial Services Committee.

Carson used to be a neurosurgeon, so 4 years at a university, med school, neurosurgery specialization.

You would think somebody with that level of advanced medical training would be pretty mentally sharp. I watched clips of him being questioned by a congressional committee and it actually made me sad to see his pitiful performance. Did he have a stroke recently, or suffering from the beginnings of dementia? Something doesn't seem right with him. Still, he probably has more on the ball than most of Dennison's other appointees.
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#3414 User is online   y66 

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Posted 2019-May-23, 08:23

From The radical plan to change how Harvard teaches economics by Dylan Matthews at Vox:

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If Harvard has a most famous course, it’s Economics 10.

The introductory economics class is reliably one of the most popular courses offered to undergraduates. It’s usually taught in a massive Hogwartsian auditorium, where hundreds of students either dutifully take notes or mess around on laptops as one of the school’s star economists leads them through the basics of supply and demand.

Because Harvard has a tendency to set the pattern for other universities, Ec 10’s textbook is a massive best-seller, used at dozens of other schools, earning its author, professor Greg Mankiw, an estimated $42 million in royalties since it was first released in 1998. Mankiw’s introduction to economics has set the tone not just at Harvard but for how Econ 101 is taught across the country.

Mankiw’s textbook covers the abstract theory that underpins economics as it has been understood for decades. It is about supply and demand, about how prices can be used to match production of a good to its consumption, and about the power of markets as a tool for allocating scarce resources. Students in Ec 10 are asked to plot supply and demand curves, to solve simple word problems about what happens when the mayor of Smalltown, USA, imposes a tax on hotel rooms.

The idea is to impart a basic theory, to lay a foundation for understanding how society works. And that theory strongly implies that markets tend to work without much intervention, and that things like minimum wages might hurt more than help.

But another Harvard economist has a different idea of how to introduce students to economics.

Raj Chetty, a prominent faculty member whom Harvard recently poached back from Stanford, this spring unveiled “Economics 1152: Using Big Data to Solve Economic and Social Problems.” Taught with the help of lecturer Greg Bruich, the class garnered 375 students, including 363 undergrads, in its first term. That’s still behind the 461 in Ec 10 — but not by much.

The courses could hardly be more different. Chetty has made his name as an empirical economist, working with a small army of colleagues and research assistants to try to get real-world findings with relevance to major political questions. And he’s focused on the roots and consequences of economic and racial inequality. He used huge amounts of IRS tax data to map inequality of opportunity in the US down to the neighborhood, and to show that black boys in particular enjoy less upward mobility than white boys.

Ec 1152 is an introduction to that kind of economics. There’s little discussion of supply and demand curves, of producer or consumer surplus, or other elementary concepts introduced in classes like Ec 10. There is no textbook, only a set of empirical papers. The material is relatively cutting-edge. Of the 12 papers students are required to read, 11 were released in 2010 or after. Half of the assigned papers were released in 2017 or 2018. Chetty co-authored a third of them.

And while most economics courses at Harvard require Ec 10 as a prerequisite, Ec 1152 does not. Freshmen can take it as their first economics course.

“I felt increasingly what we’re doing in our offices and our research is just totally detached from what we’re teaching in the intro classes,” Chetty says. “I think for many students, it’s like, ‘Why do I want to learn about this? What’s the point?’”

“It’s very different from the sciences, where as a kid you have a sense, it may not be very precise, but that people try to cure cancer,” he continues. He wants to give students a sense of the kind of economics that cures: that cures inequality, that identifies and fixes bad schools.

If this were just a pedagogical shift at Harvard, that would be one thing. But Chetty is aiming to make the course a model for other schools. After the financial crisis, many economists have concluded that Econ 101 is broken across the university system and is not preparing students for a world where markets frequently fail. Chetty’s class offers a new way to teach an introductory course, yet at the same time is more closely aligned with what contemporary economic research looks like. The course’s lecture videos are already available online, for students at other institutions to use.

That shift could change economics itself, by attracting a new breed of students who are intrigued by the field’s new empiricism, not put off by its mathiness and high theory. It could make economics departments more diverse, and more open to new perspectives from women and students of color.

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#3415 User is online   y66 

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Posted 2019-May-23, 12:31

I enjoyed Tyler Cowen's conversation with Ezekiel Emanuel.
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#3416 User is online   kenberg 

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Posted 2019-May-24, 13:05

View Posty66, on 2019-May-23, 08:23, said:



Yes, we really need to do something about all of that mathiness in economics. And it isn't just econ. Physics, nuclear engineering, far too much mathiness. All that stuff with x and y, who cares?
Ken
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#3417 User is online   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-May-24, 13:43

View Postkenberg, on 2019-May-24, 13:05, said:

Yes, we really need to do something about all of that mathiness in economics. And it isn't just econ. Physics, nuclear engineering, far too much mathiness. All that stuff with x and y, who cares?


I don't understand a presumption the two methods of teaching economics are mutually exclusive. Surely there is something to be learned from both.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter. / "I need ammunition, not a ride." Zelensky
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#3418 User is online   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-May-24, 15:27

Where have you gone, Walter Sullivan,
our nation turns its lonely eyes
to you
Woo-ooh.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter. / "I need ammunition, not a ride." Zelensky
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#3419 User is online   y66 

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Posted 2019-May-25, 08:50

View Postkenberg, on 2019-May-24, 13:05, said:

Yes, we really need to do something about all of that mathiness in economics. And it isn't just econ. Physics, nuclear engineering, far too much mathiness. All that stuff with x and y, who cares?

Who said this: It doesn't matter how beautiful a theory is. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong.
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#3420 User is online   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-May-25, 15:20

View Posty66, on 2019-May-25, 08:50, said:

Who said this: It doesn't matter how beautiful a theory is. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong.

He must have been a fine man. Or a dick. Or both. :lol:
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter. / "I need ammunition, not a ride." Zelensky
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