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confirmation bias
The New Yorker Exposes a Fake News Fraud
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  • Fat_Man

    WaPo peddles fake news. Well, shiver me timbers.

    • Andrew Allison

      Who (other than a thinking human being who’d actually read the rubbish WaaaaPo publishes) would think otherwise. The real news here is that a senior member of the DNC news agency (a.k.a. MSM) published the takedown.

      • Fat_Man

        These are passingly strange days indeed.

      • Beauceron

        “The real news here is that a senior member of the DNC news agency (a.k.a. MSM) published the takedown”
        And the New Yorker no less.
        My girlfriend, god help her, subscribes to the NYer, so I look at it on occasion. This, to say the least, is incredibly unusual for them. Shockingly so.

  • Grey Spectrum

    Maybe it’s just me, but TIA’s “Via Meadia” has been a lot more informative lately. I’ve gotten some great links to interesting articles in the past few days.

    • Beauceron

      I think it’s always been god. Indeed, I asked for a subscription to the magazine as a Christmas gift this year.

  • Beauceron

    Listen, we were treated today to our current President denouncing the damaging effects fake news has on American society…in Rolling Stone.
    Rolling Stone, lest you forget, was just found guilty in a massive defamation suit over their fake news story about a rape on one of the country’s most prestigious college campuses. Rolling Stone was forced to retract the article after the story was revealed to be pretty much completely made up– and the reporter was found guilty of actual malice in the lawsuit.

    The tone deafness, the intellectual insularity it takes to make that statement in that publication just boggles the mind.

  • FriendlyGoat

    Most of the fake news that mattered came directly from the mouth or Twitter account of Trump. You could start with the birther movement years ago and move right into the wall, the deportations, the exclusion of Muslims, the fantastic replacement for PPACA, the jailing of Clinton, the scrapping of Iran deal, the scrapping of trade agreements, the tariffs, this a “disaster”, that “sad” and the denial of climate change. The parade of crap is never ending and you do not have to be sleuth to find the source. Welcome to the biggest bait and switch of your life, chumpies.

    Ivanka wants to work to prevent climate change, she now says, and you get to watch billionaires repeal their own estate taxes.

    • JR

      Taxes are going down? About damn time!!!! WOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOO!!!! Sign me up for that.

      Overall, good rant. If you like the climate deal so much, you wouldn’t mind having it submitted to the people for ratification via their Senate representatives? You support democracy, right? Wouldn’t want one person ruling by fiat, now would we? Same thing with Iran deal. Sorry, Iran executive agreement. It was never a deal, just a deal between Obama and whomever!
      As for replacement of Obamacare, his appointment for HHS head is very promising. Let the man get into the White House first, for Chissakes! He will get to repealing all those horrible Obama policies in no time.

      • FriendlyGoat

        You’re right. Overall, it is a good rant on my part. The Trump “fake news” is a big deal. The reason it is a big deal is because HE (not me) will be disclosing to you piece by piece how fake it was. As for your tax cut, if you’re already well off, you’re gonna get something. If you’re not, Trump never gave a damn about you and still doesn’t.

        • JR

          And yet, it is those voters who have put Trump in power. You keep on calling them stupid. I don’t understand if you really think it is beneficial to your cause or not. I definitely think your “I know what’s better for you than you do” attitude is laughable at best, annoying at worst.
          Ask those Carrier workers if Trump gives a damn about them. You are acting as if Trump is the first guy in the world who was rich who used populist rhetoric. FDR, anyone? President Trump will be great for the economy and a stock market. He already promised to lower the taxes, both personal and corporate, ease the regulatory burden, and repeal that monstrosity known as Obamacare. We are about to experience a boom that will seem especially bright after the horror of the Obama years. Thankfully that chapter of our history is about to be over.
          You know this blog entry is linked to the article debunking the whole “fake news” phenomenon. Sorry, you need a new talking point.

          • FriendlyGoat

            The fake news was from Trump himself. That is the point. BTW, the stock market was already hitting records with Obama and all his policies. As for Carrier, we already covered how that was accomplished. On Obamacare, you are inviting the long term degradation of most people’s health insurance standards in all policies, including group, and nothing else can possibly happen in this scenario. Celebrate that with someone who doesn’t know better.

          • JR

            Yeah but you are forgetting two very important factors.
            1) your absolute lack of ability to predict the future. You present your opinions as facts. When those opinions don’t come true, it makes it really hard to take you seriously.
            2) Your absolute lack of ability to comprehend simple economics. You still don’t trust free markets to do what has been shown is impossible to accomplish by executive fiat. Point 2 has a lot to do with point 1.
            I don’t expect you to celebrate Obamacare. You are a Statist. You love expansion of State power. It pains you to see State power decreased and power of the People increase. We are pushing back against your evil ideology. We will never rest.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Everything in a comment section is opinion. Nothing else goes on here and none of the participants in this forum are experts on anything. My opinion is as good as yours and at all times.

            There are no free markets. There are regulated markets and there is piracy. If it makes you feel better, that is a quote from people smarter and better connected than me.

            As for health insurance, the risks for most people are FAR beyond their capacity to deal with them without government in the mix. You have never in your life been able to buy any insurance not supervised and regulated for your benefit—–and you’re damn lucky that is the case. Quit acting like you’re the Lone Ranger. It’s bullsh*t.

          • JR

            I have fancy degrees that have fooled people into believing I know something about economic. I intend on continuing this subterfuge as long as I can.
            Nobody is arguing for no regulation. Straw man alert!!!! We just have too many regulations right now. We will get closer to free markets. I know a Statist in you despises the fact that somewhere someone will do something without your say so. That’s what makes your ideology, and all its proponents, evil.
            Nobody is arguing for no government in healthcare. Straw man alert #2!!!! We just have too much of it right now. Everything I got I paid for. I pay taxes. I pay Medicare tax into a program that you are using and I won’t get a penny out of. You are a parasite on the government’s teat. Hooray for you!! How much more of my money do you need before your endless Statist greed is satisfied?
            Thank God president Trump will lower my tax burden. I’m tired of supporting useless people like you and instead of being thanked being told how lucky I am to keep my money.

          • lhfry

            Having once been one myself, I can assure you that it is pointless to argue with committed leftists like “Friendly goat.” Until he (I’m assuming here) experiences a “mugging by reality” he will continue to believe his narrative, no matter how often proven false. It takes a shock to undo religious belief, which is what leftism – Communism, socialism, progressivism, whatever you want to call it, is. There are many utopian fantasies abroad, but none has done as much damage as the version peddled as secular.

          • JR

            I just enjoy making fun of FG and his idiotic economic pronouncements. His beliefs are not rational, but religious (as you correctly pointed out) in nature. Experience of Venezuela did nothing to convince him. Well, mama said you can’t cure stupid.

          • Fred

            If I might interject here JR, some religious beliefs are indeed irrational (Protestant Fundamentalism comes to mind) as are some political beliefs (as FG often amply demonstrates). That said, some religious beliefs, like some political beliefs, are perfectly rational. If you don’t believe that, take a look at the Summa Theologiae at some point or at St. John Paull II’s encyclical Fide et Ratio. In fact, rejection of reason in religious belief (fideism) is a heresy in the Catholic tradition. Sorry to go all OT, but the canard that religious belief is intrinsically irrational is so widely and blindly accepted these days that I felt compelled to comment.

          • FriendlyGoat

            It’s good to remember that without Protestant Fundamentalism, Hillary Clinton would be president-elect beyond a shadow of a doubt.

          • Fred

            True. But people can be pretty compartmentalized. People with irrational religious beliefs can be perfectly rational about other things.

          • FriendlyGoat

            The protestant evangelicals gave the election to Trump because they now are irrational in their politics. Most of them have no idea that the main effect of a Trump presidency is going to be the considerable enrichment of those already quite rich and the diminishment of everyone else basically forever. People like Jerry Falwell, Jr. told them to vote for Trump, so they did. But when you give away the tax codes, the regulatory framework and the courts, you do not get those things back “next time”. Stay Tuned. The long term damage to the lower half of America is going to be epic in proportion. So many Trump voters from both the Catholics and the Protestants are going to be saying, “Gee, we didn’t know it was all going to be takeaway from poor people.” And my question will be, “Well, why didn’t your pastor tell you? He was supposed to be smart enough to know what Republicanism is, for heaven’s sake before leading you astray.”

          • solstice

            We (i.e. the rational among us) can see that religious beliefs are rooted in emotion rather than logic merely by observing how butt-mad religionists like you get when such beliefs are criticized and ridiculed. If religion were rational, we would not see all of the butt-hurt, ad hominem insults, bullying, and threats that we see all too frequently from your ilk. And, sorry, there is no way to square miracles and a dead person coming back to life 2000 years ago with reason, no matter how many glib and rambling papal encyclicals are written. It is impossible.

            P.S. Karol Wojtyla once kissed a Qur’an in a mosque; therefore, his opinion on any subject matters not a whit.

          • Fred

            Uh-huh. So please point out where my comment below takes a “butt-mad” tone. I was simply pointing out a common misconception. Religioius belief can, and often does, have a rational component. In the Catholic tradition, revelation transcends reason but does not contradict it. I would recommend a host of great thinkers who have applied reason to religious questions but a) I’m certain you wouldn’t read them and b) I’m not certain you have the gray matter to understand them if you did. As for JPII kissing a Koran, so what? He was a guest in the mosque and was showing respect for the worshipers as human beings and children of God. I have zero problem with that. In any case, it is completely irrelevant to the arguments he made in Fide et Ratio. Your tiresome tendency to turn every thread into a fanatical gnu atheist rant reminds me for all the world of those religious nuts who stand on street corners at festivals yelling “whoremonger” at passersby.

          • FriendlyGoat

            I explained to JR above why he is a self-admitted liar. Ditto you. Why?
            Your muddled characterization of “whatever you want to call it”secular isms as religion. The two of you fun-making little twits deserve each other.

          • JR

            You seem angry. I have been nothing but honest with you about my opinions on Trump, Hillary and your ideas. Where did you think I lied to you? Please be specific.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Yes, I am angry. You are lying about me personally every damn day with enough fighting words to get you knocked into next week by almost any man you spew them on in person. I am not a parasite on you and not your pet fool. You are lying as a comment-section commando who self-admittedly maintains a subterfuge for everywhere else. Would that your clients could read your shtick here. They deserve to.

          • JR

            I’m not lying about you. I’m describing you in a way that you are not used to hear. Aren’t you all about presenting people with different perspectives? I thought that was your whole shtick. I guess it’s OK for you to do it, but when it is done to you…. watch out!!! See. now I’m going to call you a typical Leftwing hypocrite. Which is what you are. I’m just a messenger, no need to shoot me.
            And you are my pet fool. I haven’t thought of that phrase myself, but it describes you perfectly. Once again, you seem to be blaming me for you spewing constant barrage of Statist and Collectivist propaganda. I’ve told you that unlike others on these boards, I choose to not write you off as an irredeemable moron. I choose to confront you and challenge you. It is not me mercilessly ridiculing your idiotic socialist fantasies. It is reality doing that. Your inability to process information as it becomes available is not my fault. Why are you blaming me for this?
            Same thing with subterfuge. I made a joke. It was an obvious joke. Everybody got it. Except you. It’s a new toy for you to mention in your every response. You should be thanking me for giving your pathetic life some meaning. Where’s the gratitude I ask?
            Also, I don’t hide my hatred for Socialism and Collectivism from anyone. Everybody who knows me even a little bit knows how I feel. I assure you my bosses and coworkers now.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Then write to your bosses and coworkers, and most importantly, the clients until they all get as sick of you as I am, (you POS).

          • JR

            These are anonymous Internet boards. For all I know, I am writing to them.
            You seem upset. I guess being presented with different viewpoints is something you like to do, not something you like to be done to you. Why is that?
            And can you imagine how sick I am of you and your Statism? quiet a bit. Once again, I COULD do what others have done and just ignore you as an irredeemable moron. I COULD do that. I CHOOSE to not do that. How many times can a man turn his head and pretend that he just doesn’t see? Your evil ideology must be confronted.

          • FriendlyGoat

            And your attitude is a POS which ruins comment sections. You COULD write your opinions as originals for our general edification (as I do for the most part, as well as others) instead of pretending you are anointed by God to be an attack dog in the “reply” feature on what you don’t like from other people—– peppered with personal insults. As I noted before, if you acted like this anywhere in real life your a$$ would be kicked in all spheres ranging from your social life to your employment to your neighborhood to your marriage. Using these facilities instead to constantly vent overt hostility directly onto other people is a form of emotional illness.

          • JR

            And there I was thinking you are the one who ruins comment sections with your unhinged theories and desire to vilify those who disagree. I guess it all depends on one’s perspective, doesn’t it?
            Also, YOU think you are presenting original opinions for general edification. Most other people think you are regurgitating Lefty conspiracy theories mixes with your own special brand of paranoia and self-righteousness. Your perception of you is not the same as other’s perception of you, a fact that you seem to genuinely not get.
            Many people here have patiently explained to you why your theories are wrong. Now, refusing to learn new things IS a sign of stupidity. I’m sorry, but it is. Blame me all you want, but it’s not my fault higher taxes don’t lead to more employment. It is also not my fault that socialism is evil and destructive, as has been shown numerous times with facts, figures and dead bodies.
            You are free to opine as much as you like. You are free to hold whatever views you want. I’m a First Amendment absolutist. But that means I get to challenge and confront you. I choose to not turn the other way.
            P.S. If you think this is abuse, you have obviously never worked in a high pressure environment. I get way more shlt every day at work, and they actually like me. You can’t go around promoting evil things like Statism and Collectivism and then have a thin skin. Doesn’t work that way.

          • FriendlyGoat

            I would like you too if you were intellectually honest in your motives and your arguments. Repeating “you’re an idiot” to me and citing how many other cynics you can gather here to agree with you on that point is not debate. The fact remains that high-end tax cuts do not create living-wage jobs on a net basis when the spending is cut to cover the tax cuts. Didn’t. Doesn’t. Can’t. Won’t. The tax money saved by the beneficiaries of the cuts does not go into hiring people at living wages at nearly the clip as elimination of living-wage jobs occurs from spending cuts. If this was not the case, the original Reagan cuts would have caused 1) No job problem in America for decades running, 2) No reason for taxes to have ever been adjusted upward in tweaks of the original Reagan cuts 3) No reason for EITC and safety net programs. What you claim has never been observable and, in fact, the 20 trillion of debt and the under-employed Trump supporters of today who feel left out of the economy stand in complete rebuttal of your theory. The original Reagan cuts were huge and did not work for people. The two rounds of Bush cuts were huge and did not work for people.

            Every so often, medical knowledge changes and makes doctors look bad for their former recommendations. The same is true of economics. Having you waiving your supposed knowledge in my face when decades of proof to the contrary are readily obvious is frustrating but not daunting. I can always turn you off. Click.

          • JR

            I want you and everyone else who might be reading this to know that I go into the breach knowing that I will fail.

            Half a league half a league,
            Half a league onward,
            All in the valley of Death
            Rode the six hundred:
            ‘Forward, the Light Brigade!
            Charge for the guns’ he said:
            Into the valley of Death
            Rode the six hundred

            Your charge is that tax cuts haven’t solved every single one of the economy’s problems forever and ever. Based on that criteria, no policy ever will do that. If tax cuts are guilty, then are tax increases in high costs states responsible for slums of our inner cities, controlled by Democrats for decades? It is ABSURD to blame tax cuts for social ills you describe. Of course they were adjusted, different times require different rates.
            20 trillion of debt? Are you drunk? Over 8 trillion of that came from Obama, and I don’t remember him cutting taxes, do you?
            I’m sorry if I called you stupid. That is a mortgage trader in me. I’m used to people not taking offense to something benign like that and take it personally. Rather, you have an idea fixe where you blame every negative thing that has happened in the past 35 years to one thing. You are a true believer in that, and no amount of evidence to the contrary (Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, China, formerly communist countries in Asia, Greece, Detroit, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Venezuela to name a few) will ever persuade you to not worship the all-powerful, all-expanding State. You are a true Statist, determine to grow the State, and it’s power over people, as much as you can. For that you need money, hence your obsession with stealing as much money from anyone and everyone you can lay hands on. What you want produces really horrific results, as in tens of millions of dead bodies horrific.
            People try to tell you that you are wrong, but like all religious fanatics you ignore them. You are not stupid, you are a delusional fanatic, which is way more dangerous. When I say I’m terrified of you, I mean that sincerely. People like you have been responsible for untold millions killed in the last century. Which is why I’m compelled to confront you. Like a rabid dog, ignoring the problem is not the solution,

          • FriendlyGoat

            You know that “flyover country” which just produced the Trump win, where people have been going to their evangelical churches while watching their small town lives stagnate financially for 35 years?

            I’m from there, I grew up there, worked most of my life there, and saw what tax cuts for the titans of the coasts did to employees there. I know first hand the shift of economic power that went out of their hands from 1981 forward. I know from inside the accounting of the company where I was the accountant for two decades how and why the tax cuts helped their company eventually be sold (several years after I left) by second-generation heirs to investors who never gave a hoot about them again. I know the exact amount of enrichment which flowed at lowered taxes to those selling heirs. I know the subsequent down-sizing of the workers who remained. I know that most of them don’t know that the tax cuts they were told to be “good” were NOT good for them.

            Now, here you come from a “quant” education and a coastal trader mindset, telling us all that what is good for Steve Mnuchin is good for flyover country. You even think that Trump is president because of some voter block OTHER than the trusting (but misguided) members of evangelical churches who elected him on abortion, guns, and a ginned-up fever over matters like bathrooms, wedding cakes, immigrants, and “anti-Hillary”. You think they voted to feather the nest of your life as a mortgage trader in NY/NJ.

            Well, they didn’t. They were baited one way for their votes, then switched in 1981 to a different agenda with very long negative consequences. This time the same thing is repeating, only bigger. Bait, switch and enduring damage from PROFOUND upward shift of economic power out of the very hands of the people duped into voting for it.

            Instead of you seeing me as Karl Marx, you should be seeing me as a flag-waiver from the heartland—-because that’s who I am. Older, wiser, and disappointed to be seeing the rerun of a bad movie with jackals laughing in the gallery.

          • JR

            Once again, you are blaming tax cuts for something that is not their fault. The process you are describing is called globalization. It has decisively shifted power away from labor (which cannot easily move) to capital (which easily can, and indeed does, move). This has happened EVERYWHERE in the industrialized world. Do you think your lament would have been irrelevant in UK, or France, or Italy, or any other country with a traditional manufacturing base. Yes, what you are describing IS a major major negative consequence of globalization.
            The fact that you are not even mentioning illegal immigration is laughable. Do you really think law of supply and demand does not apply to fairly low skill labor? I assure you it does, and so would any contractor, builder, janitor, etc etc etc…
            You also assume that just because something is good for the heirs, it is not good for the workers. The whole point is to grow the pie, and the verdict of history is in. Free market capitalism grows the pie the fastest.
            You are absolutely right that militant, uncompromising Left made evangelicals support Trump. Next time, as a man of the Left, tell your more eager peers that forcing endless amount of illegal immigration, forcing nuns to provide contraception, allowing grown man to use the same bathroom as where little girls go pee-pee, and calling anybody who opposed this a racist bigot is NOT a good strategy. They voted for him because YOUR side has threatened their entire way of life, as witnessed by wedding cake fiasco. Sure, it played really well in SF and NY, but I don’t think it was as well received in MI or PA or heck, even NC.
            You pine for some golden age that never existed. I live in the world as it is. And in the world as it is, Britain is slashing corporate taxes which makes NYC (where I work) less competitive than London (where I don’t). We have to cut corporate taxes and have a low one-time rate for repatriation from abroad. 10% of something is better than 35% of nothing. I know that cutting taxes on small business will cause them to grow. I know that raising taxes causes a lot of them to flee. I’ve done well under Obama and I will do well under Trump. But not everybody is like me, part of the hyper-educated coastal elite. People in Middle America need jobs, and the only way to get those jobs is to make yourself competitive via taxes, regulation and laws.
            If people of MI and WI, the two places that were hotbeds of union activity, pass right to work laws, than maybe, just maybe you are wrong and they are right.
            You think everyone who disagrees with you is a cynic, unworthy to be listened to. You refuse to believe that your unifying theory of “How the world works” is wrong, or at least partially wrong.

          • FriendlyGoat

            What I know is that the election did not go to Trump because of the ideas of you and Mnuchin. I have lived all my life around the people who voted for Trump, and they, with no small help from a barge load of deception on minor and irrelevant issues are being set up for the biggest permanent ripoff of their lives. Nothing else can possibly happen at this point.

          • JR

            “Nothing else can possibly happen at this point.”
            How am I supposed to read this with a straight face??? HOW???
            You have become an e-version of the guy who smells like stale urine and stands on a street corner in Times Square with the END IS NIGH sandwich boards. You do realize that your post-apocalyptic vision is just that, a vision? Something you imagined in your head?
            Do you want to make a bet???? For $1 or $100, you decide. Donald Trump’s popularity a year fro now will be above 50%. Let’s put our money where our mouths are. I assure you that I will pay you that amount if I’m wrong.

          • FriendlyGoat

            It takes a while for tax cutting, deregulation, and right-wing judges to play out against people. The president’s popularity rating at a one-year or two-year point is completely irrelevant. But, accelerating the upward shift of financial power in the country only means one thing long term for people from whom it was shifted. It means “biggest permanent ripoff of their lives and nothing else can possibly happen”. Everything from labor standards to collective bargaining to environment to health care, to elder programs, to safety nets to public education to higher education is “on the table” for diminishment (only). The effects will be very, very long term in nature.

          • JR

            You haven’t answered my question about a bet. I will take any bet against you. You choose everything. This is how convinced I am of how wrong you are. A symbolic $100 bet on let’s say Trump re-lection, or his ability to materially get rid of Obamacare. Anything…. On any timeline…. I’m on the other side of it, willing to pay money for my beliefs. Are you willing to do the same with your money? Make it $1. Hell, make it $.01. It’s the symbolism of it. Come on, it’d be fun. It’s OK to have fun with your political opponents. Our opponents are people not ogres.

          • FriendlyGoat

            How odd. Yesterday I was an ogre. Whatever. The reason I will not bet money with you is that I have no intention of revealing my identity to you in either a payoff or a collection. Besides, it belittles the seriousness of what is going on.

            As for Obamacare, it seems the plan now is to “repeal” it with a delay period needed to 1) Figure out a replacement, 2) Put it in play as a factor for the 2018 election. Depending on what, if anything, is actually repealed WITHOUT a two or three year forward effective date, the real insurance markets might inform folks how economics really work when you introduce uncertainty just for the heck of it.

          • JR

            Well, in a sense you still are. But with kids spending time with grandma and me smoking the old peace pipe… pacifist thoughts entered my mind.
            You know you can create a fake e-mail account to receive money via PayPal? You know this is done all the time to protect the anonymity? Because if not, then I am hella more woke than you are.
            Fine…. But we have to have a measuring stick. How about this? I’m sure Trump will win the re-election AND will have the highest minority support of any GOP candidate ever. Both of the conditions must be met for me to win that bet. Want to make it? It will sort of be like Simon-Erhlich bet. Or how about this. Obamacare repeal would be something Republicans run on in BOTH 2018 AND 2020?

          • FriendlyGoat

            No bets. Bets are for football and roulette wheels. Comment sections are for prediction. You could be right about Obamacare replacement stretching past four years instead of just two. The reason why is that Republicans have already had six years to craft a replacement they could explain in detail and garner any buy-in from real voters. That task was impossible for them which is why it isn’t already done. They have actually never had to face the issue and are still trying to float keeping the popular parts without addressing that those have always been dependent on the less-popular parts.

          • JR

            I don’t see how they keep just the popular parts. There will be losers. I just think the number of winners will be materially higher. I keep on reading about a market based system across the state lines. I will predict that they are going to go that way. And it will be wildly popular since once again, people will be allowed to purchase what THEY want as opposed to what you think they SHOULD want.
            And all my economics education tells me that free market will work better than the Obamacare monstrosity.
            Also, don’t think I’m not nothing you blatantly refusing to make a single solid prediction. not me. Unlike you, I’m not afraid to go on record. Economic growth surge from President Trump’s policies will put more money in people’s pockets. People tend to like that. We are about to enter an era of prosperity. I’m all in with my 100% S&P allocation. Ultimately, I believe me more than I believe you. And unlike you, I’m not afraid to live out those beliefs.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Of course equities go up when there is rumor of all the companies taxes being reduced by more than half. That rise does tend to produce a wealth effect for a time—-until somebody in traderland announces we are in bubble-land. But you are talking about prosperity for the ownership class and I am talking about declining prospects for the labor class including the youngest cohorts always coming in.

            As for across state lines, Tom Cruise said “Show me the money.”
            I say, show me the policy details before anyone makes a judgment on good or bad. FIRST, you have to have a race to the bottom to see which state can politically produce the worst possible standards to be approved for sale in the one state before nationwide rollout. When that is done, then we can all face the reality that a policy designed to sell at $100/month per person will be engineered to not possibly pay out more on average than claims of $900-1000 per person per year. Then we can all debate, “Wow, does that really cover anything important?”

          • Anthony

            FG, upon your initial arrival (I remember it well) here, I suggested the backlash was not about you (they don’t know you) but about what you truly represent – contravening idealized myths. Remember, wife, dog, and splendid health (not to mention a pretty decent heart).

            Carpe Diem, my good man.

          • FriendlyGoat

            I love your first two sentences. They are the most honest admission I have ever seen from you. Not so many “confidence men” self define so accurately.

            As for the rest of your personal demonization of me, I have told you before and will tell you again. I retired from free enterprise. No government jobs and no union membership. I paid the same Medicare taxes you are paying and only went on the plan two months ago. Prior to that, I paid for medical insurance as an employee in a private-sector group plan as most people do (part of their compensation for their services as an employee) and then private pay of market insurance in self employment. No Medicaid. No gaps of not paying in. Coincidentally, my personal lifetime medical claims as an adult on any insurance are probably less than $2,000 so I have paid in a heck of a lot more than I ever took out. There is a likelihood that I will actually pay more in Medicare premiums—–if ain’t free of premium, you know—-than I ever take out. Not being a hypochondriac and preferring to stay as far away from doctors as I can, having an advance medical directive skipping medical heroics, as I do, there is a good possibility I will just pass away without tapping “the system” for much money at all. Your characterization of yourself supporting me is your fantasy spun as outright lying.

            As for your understanding of “too much” regulation, real academics (the fancy degree thing) know and identify the specific regulations to be eliminated, with specific reasons why all people would be better off without them. You and your “too much” is just intellectual fraud.

          • JR

            I have a self-depreciating sense of humor. Would it make you feel better if I told you that I graduated with honors Economics degree from Stanford and honors quantitative finance degree from University of Chicago? Both of these things are true, but since you have no way to verify that, this is the first mention I’ve made of my credentials. Glad you like it. Doesn’t make your complete lack of economics any less factual, but hey, whatever makes you happy.
            So Obama publishing thousands of regulations is not intellectual fraud? How did you figure that one out? Oh, I get it. Regulations allow Statists such as yourself to control people. That’s what you and your kind ultimately want. Control over actions, and preferably thoughts. Good thing we have President Trump around to facilitate the unleashing of American entrepreneurial spirits. You are just a bitter Leftwing dead-ender who is mad at the world because they said no thank you to your vision of Statism and Collectivism. This is happening all over the world BTW. Your policies have been tried and have been found wanting. Socialists are losing power everywhere. Statism is in retreat.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Self-deprecating is hardly the case. You are the most arrogant SOB I have ever met and your degrees have never caused you to actually prove with credibility any economic principle you claim to believe in. Nothing from you to me has ever surpassed snow-job level on any intellectual plane. Seriously, JR, you’re really into that subterfuge thing you admitted and no substance ever leaks out from you here.

          • JR

            Others on this board disagree about my level of contribution. You are more than welcome to have your own opinion. No skin of my back.
            I don’t know if you are aware of this, but you are a bit of a joke here. “FG” is a shortcut for “somebody who has no idea what he is talking about other than spewing stale Leftwing talking points”. Most people just accepted the fact that you are stupid and stopped interacting with you. I, on the other hand, choose to not turn a blind eye when somebody espouses the evil ideology of Statism and Collectivism. I choose to confront it.
            As for me proving any economic principle, if experience of socialist countries in the 20th and 21st century fails to persuade you, I doubt anything I can say will convince you. You are a fool whose religious beliefs prevent him from seeing the truth. Ultimately, that is your problem, not mine.
            P.S. If you think subterfuge would keep somebody employed on Wall St. for any prolonged period of time, than you must be stupid enough to believe in Statism and Collectivism. Which you are. It all makes sense.

          • FriendlyGoat

            The campaign you aligned yourself with and which just snowed most of the really religious (Christian) people in this country with talk of populism is a screw-over of its own voters into corporate fascism for generations. You can make all the fun you want now. I’ll just go out with a clear conscience for telling the truth about it.

          • JR

            No, you will go out with your own opinion of it. Does your arrogance know no bounds? What on earth makes you think that you are some bearer of the Truth? You are nothing more than a shill for Statism and Collectivism. That is all you are and all you’ll ever be.
            You choose to believe that voters are stupid and don’t know what they want. The arrogance of that stance is truly breathtaking. But you are a Leftwinger, so nothing about your stance surprises me. Get used to 8 years of predicting doom and gloom. I will enjoy ridiculing you every time. Stupidity combined with self-righteousness is really a delightful combination if you look at it a certain way.

          • FriendlyGoat

            You enjoy ridiculing everything, JR. That’s the “elite” thing people thought they were voting against. I predict Mr. Trump will soon be reminded by a large number of his own voters that he was elected to do something “about” your ilk, not give you the moon on a stick. There is going to be a lot of backlash coming soon from the “little” right, not just from the “big” left—-as you imagine. Perhaps not enough to keep them from killing the lower classes, but save your ridicule for the disapproval from your own duped voters. They will enjoy hearing from you. I just blow you off, after all, and have for a couple of years.
            You need to remember that I am in a condition and place from which you cannot extract any real revenge—-far, far away from you in every respect.

          • JR

            Revenge? For what? For being an ideologically rigid Statist? History’s revenge is much crueler than mine could ever be.
            Everything else you write is your speculation. When you will be proven wrong, you will refuse to acknowledge it, like you always do. Like I said, you are a religious fanatic and you are willing to sacrifice everyone at the altar of Statism. Being a fanatic means never having to admit that you are wrong.
            Let me ask you this. Have you ever been wrong? Can you even admit it to yourself that people rejected you and your view of this world? You can’t, so you live in your fantasy world.
            Also, you are confusing me ridiculing you with me ridiculing everything. You are not the center of the world, you know.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Of course I have been wrong. I was raised in conservatism and lived in it for the first two thirds of my life. After I noticed its effects did not reconcile with its own claims, I bailed out of it. Career change, location change, church change, elder family died off—–right-wing surroundings in rear view mirror. Not going back, but, yes, I have experienced “wrong”.

            Your side won a presidential election by 110,000 votes spread over three states in the electoral college while losing the popular vote by 2,000,000 out of some 125,000,000 votes. You think that means your world view is correct. It does not. It just means you get to gloat while people, including many of your own voters, get rolled over and laughed at.

          • JR

            Yes, Hillary Clinton would win the Presidency of Socialist Republic of California. Rest of the country, not so much.
            You are understandably bitter now that you and your Statist friends have no power. You keep on hoping for the country to fail so you can return to power. You underestimate America and how much ordinary folks hate people like you telling them what to think and feel. Your view got rejected. Mine got vindicated. People wanted change from failed presidency of Obama. And they will get it. We are putting America first.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Ooohh, the big “we”. You don’t really know who the “we” is who gave you this opportunity to act like the King of Thought. I do. It was the evangelical church and it was not anyone else. You got them because they were lied to and agitated on matters such as bathroom politics, guns and wedding cake bakers. You can kid yourself, but don’t try to kid me that cutting the taxes for hedge fund managers and the heirs to Amway was the big selling point. Stay Tuned. The bait and switch is underway. By spring it will almost certainly find some critics besides me. Maybe it will only be belated and ineffectual buyers’ remorse in some of the churches which handed you the keys, but the notion you won on the license to enrich the already rich is beyond silly. You didn’t.

          • JR

            The notion that Trump’s goal is to enrich the already rich exists only in your head. You keep on confusing your fantasy with reality. This leads you to wrong conclusions. Like all Leftwingers, you are trapped in a closed information loop and seem to be unable to escape it. All you have is dark mutterings about something that is about to happen…. Any time now…. But not yet…..
            Your idea that church leaders were lied to is absurd. What were they lied to about?
            In short, you exist in a world of paranoia and assume the limits of your imagination are the limits of the world. People with limited intellect and imagination tend to do that a lot.

    • ——————————

      Why should anyone pay estate taxes?? You pay taxes when you earn it, so why pay when you die?

      People like Trump may not pay a high rate in income tax (because the law allows it), but how many (taxable) millions of man hours of jobs has he created?, how many (taxable) millions of tons of materials has he bought?, how many (taxable) billions of dollars of economic impact has he had on economies where he does business?, etc, etc.

      You may pay a higher tax rate…but how much do ‘you’ affect the economy….

      • FriendlyGoat

        The reasons we have estate taxes are to 1) promote philanthropy and 2) prevent your country from being run by dynastic oligarchies of permanently wealthy heirs.

        As for Trump’s income taxes, it is now established that he is benefitting from a drafting error in the S-Corp law with respect to claiming losses when other entities, not Trump, are actually sustaining those losses (in effect when he used it for carry-forward in the 1990’s, since corrected by statute in 2002, but still operable for Trump). The point is that his voters are paying taxes and their gold-plated king is not—–for years to decades, and he regards you too stupid to care. As for Trump as job creator, the demand for hotels, office buildings and golf courses creates those jobs—–not Trump the man, and not his particular money. He is not the only person who ever built anything and not the only person who does so in response to demand. Saying he needs tax breaks is a form of worshipping your captor.

        • ——————————

          I doubt the estate tax code was actually put into place to do the 2 things you mentioned. Those may be 2 unintended results of the tax code, but not the reason. The reason is that the government wanted more money. Anyway, estate taxes don’t prevent “permanently wealthy generations of heirs”. The government takes their cut (and spends it foolishly), and the heirs continue building more wealth as they age and end up with more than what they inherited. As far as philanthropy, well it should be up to people to make their own decision what they want to give, not the government.
          Doesn’t matter about Trump’s taxes. It is what the law allowed and he had a good accountant. He used the law as ANYONE would. Do you pay more than you have to?
          And it’s not like he put the money he saved in a vault somewhere. He reinvested it and rebuilt his business. So the money he didn’t pay in taxes created more for the economy than if the government would have got it. I used carry forward for my business after the 2008 crash when I sustained heavy losses in real estate.

          Your last argument regarding Trump as job creator is ridiculous at best. I am stunned at your logic. Of course there is market and demand…wouldn’t be much point in doing business where there is none…although market and demand can be created by a businesses such as, say, Apple, who creates demand for some of it’s products when it invents them. There is demand for many things right now, so what are you doing to create jobs?

          Did George Soros create jobs?…I am sure he does. He is worth 24 billion…I wonder how much taxes he pays?
          Apple for example made 181 billion last year (that’s a lot of Trumps), and used off-shore loopholes to avoid paying US tax. And there are many more Lib companies like them. See, even the Libs don’t like paying more than the law allows.

      • CapitalHawk

        Of course the purpose of the estate tax is to raise money for the treasury. But taxes also serve other purposes, and I agree with FG that the 2 purposes he listed are part of the reasons for the estate tax. And, yes, the estate tax DOES take a large chunk of money from heirs when it eventually hits. And the only way you can permanently avoid it is to set up foundations or give away money to charities (a la FG’s other point). Why do you think the Ford Foundation and the various Carnegie institutions exist?

        Finally, your argument that “I already paid taxes when I earn it, why pay another tax again?” is silly. Do you buy things with your take home pay (i.e. money that was already taxed as income)? Yes, you do. Do you then pay sales tax, and gas tax, and excise taxes, and transfer taxes and a thousand other taxes with that already taxed money? Yes, you do. And do those businesses then turn around and have to pay taxes on the income that they earned from the money you paid them (which, of course, was already taxed)? Yes, they do. And on and on it goes. Money is generally taxed in this country when it changes hands and it doesn’t matter if it was “already taxed” or not.

        • f1b0nacc1

          While I agree with most of what you are saying here, I think that you may in fact miss the point.

          George Will once said that what liberals do not understand is that money can travel and hire accountants (and lawyers) to protect it from the state, hence most tax laws that attempt to engage in social engineering typically fail or at the very least produce unintended consequences. You can apply whatever tax rates you wish, but people will always find a way to keep as much of their money as they possibly can. Even if you are particularly clever about it (and the government is rarely clever….), you merely guarantee that the wealthy (which can hire the best accounts and lawyers, and park their money overseas when possible) will benefit most and best from the loopholes. This is how Trump managed to avoid taxes, for instance, and why complex tax laws are regressive at best.

          Of course for twits like FG (and I don’t put you in that category by ANY means), it is more about revenge against those that have succeeded than anything else, so even if the laws don’t work or have adverse consequences, it is all for the best….

          • CapitalHawk

            Yes, there is no doubt the at the rich are good at avoiding taxes. Much better than the poor. But even so the estate and gift tax is not completely avoided. The government does collect a fair amount of estate tax every year. And given that the threshold is set at a pretty high level ($5 million) it definitely doesn’t hit the poor.
            Besides, the government does need to pay the bills. We can debate as to how much it must pay and to whom, but even libertarians agree that we should have law enforcement and a military (of at least a minimal size). And the estate tax definitely hits those that are most able to pay. So, it seems to me one of the lease objectionable taxes around.
            Finally, glad to hear you don’t think I’m a twit. The feeling is mutual, even if we do disagree on occasion. If we could just get FG to lighten up on his “I hate the rich and I hate anyone who practices religion”, that would be a big win too.

          • f1b0nacc1

            Here in the Midwest, the estate tax’s primary function has been to destroy the family farm and accelerate it’s replacement by agricorps. $5 million sounds like a lot, until you look at the value of a medium-sized farm and realize that they are almost all subject to estate taxes. If you aren’t a high-margin enterprise (and farms are not), you aren’t going to survive the death of the original owner. The same is true for other businesses in this size range. The wealthy actually are often able to avoid all of the estate tax with some clever planning and asset structuring, which makes this process even more regressive.

            Regarding taxes in general, I agree with you that we do need to pay the bills somehow, and that taxes are a regrettable necessity. The idea that hitting ‘those that are most able to pay’ is a universal good isn’t clear to me, progressive taxes don’t strike me as self-evidently just. I can live with a flat tax, but a post-hoc wealth tax strikes me as more of a Goatian confiscation rather than a way to pay the bills.

            And though I am glad you understand my desire *NOT* to portray you as a twit, I want to apologize again if I did in any way do so. I enjoy our interactions, and while we might not always agree (reasonable people rarely do!), it is the exchange that makes it worthwhile…

          • CapitalHawk

            I’m from Iowa. My family lives in Iowa and Nebraska. My wife is from the Kansas City area. So, I know what you are talking about. But the average size farm in Iowa is 350 acres and the average price per acre is under $10,000, so you are well under $5 million. Yes, it hits some family farms and they can relatively easily deal with it through life insurance and a little planning. The estate tax, like many things, is worse for those who do not prepare for it.

            As to progressive vs. regressive taxes, I would personally like a VAT on everything coupled with an income tax only on high incomes. But I don’t trust the politicians to keep the income taxes low. Look at the UK and you will see what happens when you have a VAT and an income tax (hint: they both end up very high). Anyway, that’s a discussion for another time.

            I didn’t think you were calling me a twit. We’re all good. And yes, the comments and the interactions there are half the reason to come here!

          • f1b0nacc1

            I am in Kansas City, though only for the last 8 (almost 9) years. Before that I was something of a high-tech nomad (I like to say that I was chased out of every decent place that there is…) If you find yourself in KC, let me know…

          • CapitalHawk

            Will do.

        • ——————————

          My comment was “You pay taxes when you earn it, so why pay when you die”, not “I already paid taxes when I earned it, why pay another tax again?”. I probably should have added ‘and through your life’ after …earn it, to qualify my statement a bit better.
          As a person who owns 3 different businesses that are completely unrelated to one another in what they do, and are also taxed differently, I understand about all the different ways we are taxed through life, even the not so obvious ones. I just don’t like the idea of getting taxed at the end upon death…it is simply a personal opinion. I also don’t like the government forcing me to be charitable. It should be up to each person whether and how much they want to give, not forced through taxation policies. Charity should come from the heart, not the IRS…again, personal opinion.
          I also understand that charities use the money to hire people, build buildings, buy supplies, etc., which supports the economy. But so would other things the heirs would do with the money. The money would be working somewhere, just not forced to be working at a charity for example.

          • CapitalHawk

            Well, we may not agree, but there are a whole host of taxes I would reduce before I got to the estate tax. Anyway, my last point is still operative – whenever money changes hands in this country (or changes its form, even if it stays in your hands, as when you sell some stock at a profit and then buy other stock), there is generally a tax associated with that transfer. Death is no exception.

    • Beauceron

      “the wall, the deportations, the exclusion of Muslims, the fantastic replacement for PPACA, the jailing of Clinton, the scrapping of Iran deal, the scrapping of trade agreements, the tariffs”
      That isn’t fake news though.
      They may have been baits, or red herrings, or straight up campaign lies, but that’s not fake news as we’re discussing it here.

      • FriendlyGoat

        It is THE fake news that mattered. We’re making progress that you have upgraded the Trump Campaign to “baits, red herrings or straight-up campaign lies”. This other fake news stuff is not very important.

        • Beauceron

          “We’re making progress that you have upgraded the Trump Campaign to “baits, red herrings or straight-up campaign lies”. ”

          You’re just shameless. That is not what I said at all, and I suspect you know that.

          “This other fake news stuff is not very important.”

          The establishment media gets caught calluding with a political party, then, after the election, goes around denouncing all the upstart news sites that counter their own false narratives as “kahe news” and that isn’t important?

          To the contrary, it is vitally important.

          • FriendlyGoat

            You keep making these Freudian slips until you remember you’re supposed to be participating with the others here in the game of bashing FG. You know the campaign was a sh*t show. So do I.

          • Beauceron

            No, you keep engaging in irredeemable dumbassery.

            I write something like “They may have been baits, or red herrings, or straight up campaign lies.”

            And you respond with LOOK YOU ADMITTED THAT TRUMP ENGAGED IN “baits, or red herrings, or straight up campaign lies” AHA! AHA!

            In your rush to be the board’s unhinged Leftist lunatic, you miss the not so small “They may have been” qualifier. That is the operative phrase here. They may have been. They may not have been. We don’t actually know yet– why don’t we know yet? Well, because Trump is still nearly two months from even taking office. I think we’ll have to wait two years to find out the truth of it.

            And you kind of beg to be bashed with this sort of rank idiocy.

            I don’t know what Trump is yet. Neither do you.

            I THINK (that’s the operative qualifying word here) that Trump LOOKS TO BE (another operative qualifying phrase there) turning out to be pretty much a standard GOPe president. Many will be delighted, even relieved, if that is the case. I imagine the boys over at NR and the WSJ are delighted at the moment. IF THAT TURNS OUT TO BE THE CASE (qualifying phrase) I will personally be dispointed. But that’s because I am not much of a fan of the GOP establishment tax cuts for the wealthy, don’t worry it’ll trickle down policies.

            I THOUGHT (qualifier) he might turn out to be something differet, that he might break the mold– not that this statement leaves open the possibility that I may be wrong, that it isn’t the case YET. He may yet turn out to be something different.

            I think, aside from your (I suspect intentional) misreading of people’s posts, you get a bit annoying denouncing someone who has not even taken office yet. Personally, I will wait and I will see. I will certainly agree with some of the policies you find horrible. I will disagree with some of the policies you disagree with (which will be all of them, probably). In the end, if Trump manages to get control of the mass immigration problem you folks on the Left have engineered and benefited so much from, I will consider him a success. Of course, I am skeptical about that, too.

          • FriendlyGoat

            You say you’re not a fan of establishment tax cuts for the wealthy on the justification of trickle down, you just elected precisely that as the now-announced #1 priority of both Trump and the Congress in EPIC dimensions and you want me to “wait and see”. Why are you talking to me about dumbassery? I am predicting what Trump is predicting. There are no “qualifiers”.
            People were baited with one set of things, the elected officials are switching to another set and announcing them daily. You have the occasional integrity to notice this even in your own writing until you feel obligated to argue with me—-because it’s me. Good grief.

          • Beauceron

            Well, I didn’t elect. I am a registered independent, and I voted third party, like I usually do.

          • FriendlyGoat

            Well, we could always hope that three Republican Senators suddenly rediscover a statesmanlike spirit from the patriots of old, switch their party affiliation to Democrat or Independent, and announce to the country that a GOP dream agenda WILL NOT be passed on 51-vote “reconciliation”. Unless that happens, a GOP dream agenda WILL be passed on reconciliation so fast that Americans’ heads spin. Gee, what happened to a progressive tax code? Poof, you lost it by April Fools Day, 2017.

  • FluffyFooFoo

    People actually think Trump is a bigot. Them folks have a long way to go yet.

  • jsdozcn9

    “Like the most effective Russian propaganda, the report weaved together truth and misinformation.”

    Anyone who links to RT and infowars without verifying the information is an unwitting propagandist. That includes drudge. RT is a Russian propaganda site, (no one disputes that, right?) and lots of people link to it. So yeah, he paints with an overly broad brush but the problem of propaganda is real and too many people don’t recognize the propaganda. Leading up to the election there were a lot of links to RT, It could have influenced voters. Many people don’t understand how Russia uses propaganda and the wapo article tried to educate people about the problem. I have a very low expectation on the ratio of truth to misinformation coming from the wapo but I would say this article was no worse than most of their “news”.

    But if you want to consider how propaganda affected the election you also should consider all the mainstream media supporting Clinton. That had much more of an effect than the RT.

    • Curious Mayhem

      Indeed. The level of delusion there is breathtaking.

      For example, Trump probably did win the popular vote, not Clinton. But you need to count all votes cast (including the uncounted Trump votes in the big “blue” states) to find out. It’s difficult to come up with such a solid electoral vote victory, without also having a popular majority or plurality (like Clinton in 1992 and 1996).

    • Beauceron

      I look at Drudge on occasion.
      I have never seen an RT or InfoWars link– not that it doesn’t happen, it just isn’t often. Certainly not often enough to create a link to Putin’s spy network.
      And say what you will about Alex Jones, but I think the last thing that guy is is a Russian agent.
      He’s a dyed-in-the-wool nutter, but he isn’t a Putin patsy.

  • Curious Mayhem

    RIP WaPo, my hometown, childhood newspaper 🙁

    Thanks to Adrian Chen, for pointing out what should have been obvious. Drudge or anyone else not part of the bicoastal liberal elite journalism has nothing to do with Putin except passing along headlines and links dredged up by netbots. That doesn’t mean there’s any backing by Putin. Trump knows some Putin cronies — so what? Some of those same cronies donated to the Clinton Foundation when Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State.

    There is real disinformation coming from Russia, but it comes directly from Russia (like RT, for example, or the Putin trolls who comment on sites like this one). There’s no evidence that any news site in the West is a Putin troll. The Russians are the most sophisticated practitioners of disinformation, as they got very good at it during the Cold War, and some of their memes have had a long shelf-life. For example, the incessant leftist comparison of Israel to Nazi Germany comes directly from Soviet propaganda of the 1950s, 60s, and 70s. I bet not one person in 10,000 in the West today knows where that canard came from. Or that the US backed Allende’s overthrow in 1973 (false), or that the CIA invented AIDS (false). Etc.

    Putin’s goal is not backing Trump or anyone else in particular — it’s sowing chaos.

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