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Maybe the world is ThreeSources -- add a #3srcs hashtag to post your tweets

October 26, 2016


Matt Yglesias accidentally deleted 3000 tweets. Ooopsie-dooldles!

Some of them were a little embarrassing. But I want to ensure that this gem from 2013 is archived:


Because, wouldn't you know it? This "marker" is missing.

Hat-tip:Ed Driscoll @ Insty

October 25, 2016

October 23, 2016

Equal Time

"What's the word? Gettysburg!"

Here on "Occupy Democrats" [fourth comment] we believe in giving equal time to both sides. Never Trumper Jonah Goldberg had his say below. As a Never Hillaryer ? I now give you Trump's Gettysburg speech, made yesterday. After a 10-minute intro by America's Governor, once a jk fave, Trump's remarks begin at 10:00. If you click play, however, you will start at what I feel is the meat of the speech where he discusses the raison d'etre of the "establishment," how it uses corruption to cling to power, and his proposal to change Washington and restore economic power to the voters, not the special interests. Enjoy!

But jk thinks:

I thank you for your humor on the scurrilous "Occupy Democrats": charge. As a meme I liked on Facebook said "After the election, I hope we can all still be friends. Even if we're in different FEMA camps."

But the charge of Walmart* destroying Main Street with predatory pricing is right out of their playbook. (I hope everyone has seen the Penn & Teller BS on Wal-Mart -- it's one of the top three in our house.)

Walmart drives out competitors by offering better goods, prices, and service. As did A & P, Montgomery Wards, and a string of retail innovators before them.

Aaaaaand he's back. At 18:05 he hits the AT&T - Time Warner merger "a deal we will not approve in my administration." Oh.

"Likewise, Amazon should be paying massive taxes... and what that is doing to department stores." I took an online Econ 101 course taught by A Hillsdale prof, and that was his favorite example of disruption. The small towns in the frontier had a dirty store with high prices, low selection and nosy ownership. People have been delighted to receive every innovation but each has been greeted with worry about the inferiors' being lost.

Not only new deals. The Trump Administration -- like on NAFTA -- has given itself license to look over old deals and break them up. On Comcast's merger: "and we'll look at breaking that deal up and other deals like it."

At least Teddy Roosevelt had erudite charm.

I cannot bend principle far enough to accommodate this. I'm sorry the Speaker Gingrich and Mayor Giuliani can.

Posted by: jk at October 23, 2016 1:03 PM
But johngalt thinks:

I did not listen to every word, much as I tried. I had to quit about 25 minutes in. And I was listening for the wheat while you were likely attuned to the chaff.

I did hear him say that "Amazon is paying nothing in taxes - they should be paying massive taxes." Let me do my best Bill Clinton impersonation here: That depends on your definition of the word "should."

If you mean that, under current tax codes, where corporations are taxed on their profits higher than in virtually any other country on earth, then yes, the highly profitable Amazon should be paying, as Donald likes to say, "obscene taxes" like he pays.

If, on the other hand, you mean under tax codes as they should be, where corporations are not taxed because all taxes are ultimately borne by individuals anyway and the fair and transparent way to tax individuals is directly, without chicanery that inflates the prices of goods and services, then no, Amazon should not be paying massive taxes.

In the light of recent criticism of Trump based on his carry-forward losses exempting him from taxes until those losses are re-earned, I conclude that Trump is referring to the first of those two definitions of "should" in which case, I agree with him.

The AT&T -Time/CNN merger is a special case of "Trust Busting" being as they are media giants, whom he had accused earlier in his speech of corruption and collusion with the federal Leviathan. I join his opposition to giving them more power.

And finally, on the analogy I made between the Wal-Mart effect on a small town and the Chinese currency manipulation and "illegal dumping" on the entire US economic system, I submit there is a difference in how the wielder of economic control will treat its customers once their competition is vanquished. Contests between commercial foes are called "commerce." Contests between geopolitical foes are called "wars."

But maybe we'll still get clean stores with copious selection after our national flag is changed from having fifty stars to one really, really big one... and all the white stripes are changed to match the red ones.

Posted by: johngalt at October 24, 2016 4:30 PM

October 22, 2016

All Hail Jonah Some More

I look forward to happier days and feel a little bad just delivering an argument (which includes but is not limited to ad hominem) from the King of the Never Trumpers.

But I cannot disagree with anything said here. We've covered most, but the ~9:40 part contradicts even the anti-Political Correctness and adds to the discussion. He will use it to suit himself, but "he's against being held accountable for political correctness."

This might be the last one of the campaign, but it certainly encapsulates what I believe.

2016 Posted by John Kranz at 1:30 PM | What do you think? [4 comments]
But johngalt thinks:

Assigning motive to Newt is unfair. "He only says that because he's a Trump surrogate." Perhaps he's a Trump surrogate because he believes in the movement to wrest control of our nation from lying politicians. (Oops, that's a redundant statement.)

His guiding conservatism "only believes in two things:" The importance and power of ideas and the importance of character. What about the Constitution? What about liberty? What about republicanism?

I listened up to 12:12 where he said, "This idea that he won't get rolled by the bureaucracy, I think is nuts."

I have concluded that Trump is a "cad." (Look up the specific meaning.) I stipulate that Trump is not a perfect candidate, or even a very good one. But the available choices of non-politicians were quite limited and I do not condemn the voters for rallying behind the loudest and brashest among them.

For all of his Trump bashing Jonah did allow as how people like me - "all in to stop Hillary" - have an honorable mission. Whew!

It is true that Trump MIGHT get "rolled by the bureaucracy" and fail to make a dent in their Leviathan. After all, George W Bush failed. George HW Bush failed. Ronald freaking Reagan failed. But Hillary is their QUEEN!

Genghis Khan or Marie Antoinette. Cast your ballots by November 8.

Posted by: johngalt at October 23, 2016 11:28 AM
But jk thinks:

Our continued internecine fratricide is that, yes, you admit to his being a cad, and boorish and unpolished candidate. But you do not so readily admit to his philosophical inconsistencies.

I've had to ask myself whether I could support a candidate who was as caddish and boorish, were he to generally support the things I believe. I cannot guarantee anything but I certainly think I would. There are many historical figures I do not like in the "want to out for a beer" sense. And there are a ton of whom I am quite fond but with whom I disagree fervently.

It's not his personality. I disagree with his strongly held positions and do not trust his oscillating positions where we are simpatico.

Jonah has a front row seat for thinkers he respects and admires changing their tune to support Trump. It might be conviction, it might be politics, it might be the opportunity of a future cabinet post.

The catchphrase of Thucydidean Realism is fear, honor, and interest. Goldberg and I will not change or deny our beliefs before any of them.

Posted by: jk at October 23, 2016 12:43 PM
But johngalt thinks:

You distrust his oscillating positions and I see no alternative BUT to trust them. And on that charge, isn't Hillary revealing herself to be just as unprincipled? Not fair to make such an absolute judgment on one candidate and not the other.

It might help you to think of Trump as Gail Wynand more than Hank Rearden, Howard Roark or even Peter Keating. He may be a mess philosophically but he has the natural human sense of right and wrong that every successful man has, if he would just choose to learn WHY.

Posted by: johngalt at October 23, 2016 1:03 PM
But jk thinks:

I am fully #neverhillary. The county chair can suggest my not voting for Trump facilitates her election, but I have too many friends who are Public Choice theorists to take my single vote that seriously. Yes, she is really awful. I will hope the Republic survives and be at peace knowing I did not vote for her.

Will he "learn WHY?" Maybe it was after the I-could-not-stand-it-anymore mark, but Goldberg says that expecting a 70-year old to change fundamentally is folly. My sister is voting for him on that premise; I am not.

Posted by: jk at October 23, 2016 1:13 PM

October 21, 2016

All Hail Jonah

A friend of mine insisted to me the other day that if the NeverTrumpers, women, and Republican friendly independents rallied to Trump he'd be in the lead. That's true. Itís also true that between me and Charles Koch, our combined assets are in excess of $40 billion. -- Jonah Goldberg [subscribe]
2016 Posted by John Kranz at 5:39 PM | What do you think? [1 comments]
But johngalt thinks:

Cute. But it's also true that if they don't he may well be in the lead already.

Posted by: johngalt at October 21, 2016 5:59 PM

Otequay of the Ayday

The establishment also recoiled in horror from Milwaukee Sheriff Dave Clarke's declaration that it is now "torches and pitchforks time."

Yet, some of us recall another time, when Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas wrote in "Points of Rebellion":

"We must realize that today's Establishment is the new George III. Whether it will continue to adhere to his tactics, we do not know. If it does, the redress, honored in tradition, is also revolution."

Baby-boomer radicals loved it, raising their fists in defiance of Richard Nixon and Spiro Agnew.

But now that it is the populist-nationalist right that is moving beyond the niceties of liberal democracy to save the America they love, elitist enthusiasm for "revolution" seems more constrained.

What goes around comes around.

Patrick J. Buchanan - An Establishment in Panic

The Jacket and The Hat

Great 45 Minutes if you can find it. Camus, Ayn Rand, trade protectionism...

But johngalt thinks:

Found a few minutes on international trade around 24:00. They're discussing the principle of international free trade, and the obvious failings of tariffs. Do they really believe that our trading partners are as honest as we are? Who knows, maybe we're not as honest as I'm led to believe either. Point is, it's not as simple as "trade agreements good/trade without agreements bad." Trade agreements seek to prevent minor disputes from mushrooming into trade wars. But if the deal benefits the mobile owners of capital and harms American workers, is it still a "net increase for everybody?"

Posted by: johngalt at October 21, 2016 4:21 PM
But jk thinks:

I thought him pretty moderate on trade -- I am not claiming he supports my side.

I think he did reduce it to a fundamental question: do we cater policy toward people who make Fords or who buy Fords? There are more of the latter, so we made that decision and ("you're not going to be able to put that shit back in the goose.") I think he said that -- I like this guy more every time I hear him.

One could make an argument that it is better to serve the Ford workers. I would not, but I would sit still as best as I could.

The question becomes: do you believe in comparative advantage and trade gains from specialization at all? We were talking about foundations of prosperity and I say that is what brought us from flinging dung to iPhones.

If we're going to bail out Ford workers, we have to allow everyone who wants to make something here to be protected from foreign competition. No iPhones, expensive cars and goodnight to the Golden age of guitars.

If our partners are foolish enough to subsidize our purchases at low prices, then I suggest a Christmas Card or a fruit basket. "Goddam Chinese aren't charging us enough for those nice mandolins -- there oughtta be a law!"

Posted by: jk at October 21, 2016 5:16 PM
But johngalt thinks:

A sidebar, just to check a premise:

Is it "a net increase for everybody" when [Big_Box_Retailer] builds a store in a small town and sells things below cost until all the mom and pop shops are driven out of business, and then raises prices when they are the only game left in town?

The answer to that question informs my next one:

Is it a "net increase for everybody in country A" when country C dumps labor intensive goods on the market until country A stops competing?

Posted by: johngalt at October 21, 2016 6:04 PM
But jk thinks:

Hmm, ThreeSources became "OccupyDemocrats" so quickly I barely noticed...

I think that is a myth. If it were to happen, I think it might be a net good in that the townspeople expressed their preferences and left the door open for another retailer to take their business.

I find both of your premises very zero-sum. The whole town does not shutter its doors, the whole country does not stop manufacturing. Some business will be unable to compete, others will do better because their customers are saving on commodities.

Likewise, some low value added manufacturers will not compete. Others will excel by having diverse opportunities to purchase subcomponents. For all the hue and cry, is not American automotive manufacturing doing well if one includes non-Detroit/non-union plants down South?

Like the small town with the Walmart*, Americans will be able to buy more Fords if they're saving on Microwaves and TVs.

Posted by: jk at October 21, 2016 7:05 PM

No There There

Again, the October Surprises this year all confirm your impressions.

I mean, who would have thought -- except everybody -- that Sec. Clinton is a craven and rapacious political opportunist with no core principles? Gambling? At Rick's?

What does Hillary Clinton really believe? Does she have strong beliefs about anything? A new raft of emails from the Clinton camp give us reason to doubt.

The documents show the Clinton advisors carefully and meticulously messaging the Clinton position on a wide range of issues--on everything from the Keystone pipeline to the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). As they emailed back and forth, the advisors carefully weighed the costs and benefits (in terms of votes, campaign contributions and favorable or unfavorable publicity) of nuanced positions.

On a great many issues, Clinton has changed her positon--including gay marriage, the TPPA and the pipeline--over the nine-year period covered by the emails. The Clinton advisors anguish over how to position theses changes without appearing to be "cynically" chasing votes or giving the appearance of "putting a finger to the wind."

But there appears to be no email exchange where anyone discusses what Clinton actually believes about any issue at all.

Unless those were in the "Yoga Mails."

2016 Posted by John Kranz at 1:15 PM | What do you think? [0 comments]

According to Whom?


October 20, 2016

Don't click this. Comments (2)