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February 26, 2011

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Oh my god. I heard a rumor tht this was going to happen but didn't quite beieve it.

Other revolutions were won when the enforcers for the government joined the rebellion.

Oh my god!

And I think Avedon Carol is a bit paranoid. I know their are sell out Demos but her examples aren't very good.

I am worried abou tthe bait and switch senario sketched ouut. The no bid on thepower plants is just plain corruption and you can bet that the employees of those plants, once the sale goes through will all be fired or end up working fro substancially less

My brother, who is in management and not a union employee, was there today.

"Out of every dollar that funds Wisconsin' s pension and health insurance plans for state workers, 100 cents comes from the state workers"

This is semantic bullsh*t.

As I always say: don't mess with the Packers.

The link to the restaurant story has been updated. All I would like to suggest is that if any of those folks who are making threatening phone calls or getting upset on blogs about this restaurant have ever employed libertarian reasoning, they deserve to be ridiculed every single time they make a political point.

ccdg
Slarti, yes it is a semantic bull...., but truthful in practice. Wages plus benefits equals, cost of the labor. Whether it is paid in benefits or in cash it is in the name of the worker.

I remember reading once that one of the things a leader must never do is issue an order he knows will not be followed. Maybe Scotty ought to head over to the poli sci department and audit a course on leadership? Because he doesn't seem to be doing too good on the subject at present...

"Out of every dollar that funds Wisconsin' s pension and health insurance plans for state workers, 100 cents comes from the state workers"

CCDG: This is semantic bullsh*t.

Before passing judgement on the integrity, honesty, or good faith of newcomer CCDG, there's something I'd like to know. Does CCDG accept or reject the proposition that workers effectively pay both halves of FICA?

I ask because this proposition has been put forth as non-semantic non-bullshit in the past. Since it is exactly the same proposition as David Cay Johnston advances in the article from which the blockquote is taken, I want to know when, exactly, this former free-market truism became "semantic bullsh*t".

--TP

Maybe there's hope yet. This is some exciting sh*t - a real tea party, if you ask me.

CCDG:

This is semantic bulls*t.
Your comment has just been edited to conform with the Posting Rules, which are posted in the upper left-hand sidebar, and you now see.

Please read them before commenting again. This is a Warning.

[...] No profanity. For the record, 'hell', 'damn' and 'pissed' are not considered 'profanity' for the purposes of this rule; also for the record, the more offensive racial slurs and epithets will be deemed to 'profanity' for the purposes of this rule

[...] we don't ban for ideological reasons (unless you're a Nazi or something equally vile) and/or simple disagreements (never mind that it's not the easiest thing in the world to find someone who can manage to disagree with all of us on the same topic). We're all adults here, so I'm sure that this should be sufficient

Thanks.

I apologize for the lack of cohesion to the Posted Rules at the moment. This will be addressed as soon as I get some time.

Tony P., I know you were just quoting, but your quote has been edited as well.

On substance, CCDG, perhaps you would expand your comment as to what, specifically, you disagree with here to more than a single sentence of pure assertion?

Could you perhaps expand on your expertise? David Cay Johnston:

David Cay Johnston is a Tax Analysts' columnist. The Washington Monthly calls him "one of the country's most important journalists" and the Portland Oregonian says his work is the equal of Ida Tarbell, Upton Sinclair and Lincoln Steffens. At The New York Times, Johnston received a 2001 Pulitzer Prize for exposing tax loopholes and inequities. He now teaches the tax, property and regulatory law of the ancient world at Syracuse University College of Law and Whitman School of Management. He is the author of two bestsellers on taxes, Perfectly Legal and Free Lunch. His next book, The Fine Print, will be published in 2011.
Your own expertise is?

crithical tinkerer:

ccdg
Slarti, yes it is a semantic bull
I'm sorry, why are you addressing "Slarti" when he hasn't posted to this thread?

And, again, specifically, what part of this article are you disagreeing with? Have you even read it?

Forgive me for asking, but you're literally addressing someone who hasn't posted, so I'm kinda wondering what you do and don't read.

You may, of course, simply be confused, and then confused, and then repeatedly confused, but if so, well, we all get confused at times, there are many reasons, I've often been confused, and as it happens, I'm confused right now, crithical tinkerer, by your comment, as I am by many of your comments.

Do feel free to be specific and quote that which you are specifically disagreeing with, if you'd be so kind.

Thanks muchly!

Its Marty not Slarti, my bad:
"Yeah I know, its how they spend some of the other billions that I am not fond of, even for a centro-conservative Dobie Gillis(which is now how I officially define my political affiliation, CCDG). Didn't say they were so evil, just not so nice.

Posted by: Marty | February 24, 2011 at 11:39 AM"

Its semantically wrong because it's not how it is on the paper and procedural, but effectively is correct.

Could you perhaps expand on your expertise?

There are plenty of prominent journalists and college lecturers I disagree with - this argument from "authority" it bullsh#t leading nowhere. Besides Gary, you have strong opinions on all sorts of topics, yet you don't have any proven "expertise" in these fields - correct me if I'm wrong.

I hope people note that I've updated the post. I don't want to do many, or preferably any, more updates, give length and MEG0, but ditto not too many posts, so this now here: Koch executives vow to 'continue to fight' in Wisconsin:

In their first published remarks since a prank caller tricked Gov. Scott Walker into thinking he was speaking with big-bucks backer David Koch himself, Koch executives said that that hoax and nearly two weeks of Madison protests have only strengthened the Koch brothers' determination to continue to use their billions to promote a national agenda that includes gutting the power of unions and deregulating industry.

[...]

Their statements in a Thursday night story by Robert Costa of the National Review Online, itself a bastion of conservatism, were defiant.

"With the Left trying to intimidate the Koch brothers to back off of their support for freedom and signaling to others that this is what happens if you oppose the administration and its allies, we have no choice but to continue to fight," says Richard Fink, the executive vice president of Koch Industries. "We will not step back at all."

[...]

The interviews, published Thursday evening, were a response to growing questions about the behind-the-scenes role the Koch brothers seem to be playing in Wisconsin politics and the showdown between Walker and protesters. On Thursday, hundreds of protesters held a rally outside the office building that is home to the company's lobbying firm, which moved into its new digs right around the time of Walker's election.

But if anything the scrutiny only seems to have made the Koch team dig in its heels. “We will not step back at all. We firmly believe that economic freedom has benefited the overwhelming majority of society, including workers, who earn higher wages when you have open and free markets. When government grows as it has with the Bush and Obama administrations, that is what destroys prosperity,” Fink says.

Koch executives say that the real-life David Koch has never met or spoken with Walker. (They did not mention if the governor and Charles Koch have met or spoken, however.)

[...]

These principles, executives say, have now made the Koch brothers victims of what they describe as a left-wing conspiracy gearing up for the 2012 presidential election. “This is not just left-wing bloggers,” Fink says. “This is part of an orchestrated campaign that has been going on for many months. It involves the Obama administration, the Center for American Progress, aligned left-wing groups, and their friends in the media. This is just the latest salvo in their attacks on the Koch brothers and Koch Industries."

Fink and the Koch brothers founded and still fund the tea party group Americans for Prosperity, but Fink insists the team has little to do with the organization's work in Wisconsin. Last weekend, the group organized caravans of buses to send Walker supporters to the Capitol, and some members are mounting efforts to recall the 14 Democratic senators who left the state to stall a vote on the budget bill. “We are not directing that,” Fink says. “They are staff-driven. They are out there trying to bring fiscal responsibility back to Wisconsin. Do we support them? Yes, we do, but we are not involved with their day-to-day activities. They are out there doing their best trying to make a difference. It is good to have them on the ground, in the battle, trying to help out.”

Koch executives spoke of their work in Wisconsin as just one battleground in their national fight "to take on the special interests," with others to follow. “We support Governor Walker, along with numerous other governors, who are trying to deal with the fiscal crises in their states,” Fink says, adding that the company has had nothing to do with the specifics of the budget repair bill, however. "It is clear Scott Walker is trying to do the right thing for Wisconsin.”

And so are the Koch brothers, company executives say. “We don’t try to have a high profile,” Fink says. “We are not secretive, but we are private. It is the Left that is giving us a higher profile. Charles Koch has been at this for 50 years and David has been involved with [philanthropy] for decades. I have been at this for 39 years, 35 of them with Charles. This is a big part of our life’s work. We are not going to stop.”


Copyright 2011 madison.com. All rights reserved.

http://www.zerohedge.com/article/guest-post-analysis-global-insurrection-against-neo-liberal-economic-domination-and-coming-a>Here is a very good description of what is going on in WI and elswhere. And this is on a previously pure conservative site. There is a chance that liberals and true conservatives can unite around this.

And here is http://fbc.binghamton.edu/299en.htm>Emmanuel Wallerstein whom i had been following for last couple years and cant wait for the next bimonthly commentary.
His last part says everything that matters.
-"This debate about a "civilizational crisis" has great implications for the kind of political action one endorses and the kind of role left parties seeking state power would play in the world transformation under discussion. It will not be easily resolved. But it is the crucial debate of the coming decade. If the left cannot resolve its differences on this key issue, then the collapse of the capitalist world-economy could well lead to a triumph of the world right and the construction of a new world-system worse even than the existing one.
For the moment, all eyes are on the Arab world and the degree to which the heroic efforts of the Egyptian people will transform politics throughout the Arab world. But the tinder for such uprisings exists everywhere, even in the wealthier regions of the world. As of the moment, we are justified in being semi-optimistic."

novakant:

Besides Gary, you have strong opinions on all sorts of topics, yet you don't have any proven "expertise" in these fields - correct me if I'm wrong.
I couldn't agree more that the argument from authority is insufficient.

Thus my, you know, posting links to the actual argument, and then when it's challenged, asking for the actual arguments in response.

Meanwhile, asking someone "Could you perhaps expand on your expertise?" is not an argument from authority, as I'm sure you must know. It's a "question."

And, yes, I'm an autodidact. Do I not provide enough cites on the points I make? Do I claim only authority by virtue of title?

Occasionally. How often?

Do you have a cite on such a figure?

:-)

Here is a very good description of what is going on in WI and elswhere.
Or not.

I suggest perhaps a bit more research into your links, and the sites you appear to consider authoritative.

Note:

It would be very wise of you to study our disclaimer, our privacy policy and our (non)policy on conflicts / full disclosure.
Disclaimer:
aking investment decisions based on information published on Zero Hedge, or any internet site for that matter, is more than unwise, it is folly.

Zero Hedge provides no assurance or guarantee of "up-time," or reliability. Zero Hedge does not guarantee to be free of errors [...] Zero Hedge is not responsible for [...] the reliance on any information on the site.

All of the content on Zero Hedge is provided without assurance or warranty of any kind. No warranty of fitness for any particular use, merchantability or non-infringement is made.

Why do you think the postings there are reliable sources of information?

Specifically.

"Its Marty not Slarti, my bad"

Thanks for clarifying.

Goodness knows, I make enough typos of my own! And plenty of similar errors and solecisms, so I'm certainly never going to intentionally criticize anyone for that!

As I said, we all get confused often enough.

If there is someone out there who doesn't ever get confused, and never makes typos -- well, okay, I know some people who never make typos in public, but they also publish very little writing in public, but aside from such people -- I'd like to meet them! :-)

Meanwhile, asking someone "Could you perhaps expand on your expertise?" is not an argument from authority, as I'm sure you must know. It's a "question."

It's obvious that your comment is an argument from authority, namely Johnston's authority.

Do I claim only authority by virtue of title?

In the comment I was responding to you do, citing Johnston's achievements to prove his authority on the matter.

Generally, you use a large number of links to bolster your points and criticize people for not doing the same. It's a bit like judging the quality of a paper by the number of footnotes it contains.

Gary
Please, don't make verbal fallacy argument by talking about person(blog) instead of the post value. It is an example of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reductio_ad_Hitlerum>Reductio ad Hitlerum and it was taken from http://ampedstatus.org/analysis-of-the-global-insurrection-against-neo-liberal-economic-domination-and-the-coming-american-rebellion-we-are-egypt-revolution-roundup-3/>here not original zerohedge post.

Just a suggestion, maybe we should wait a bit until CCDG gives a response to Tony P's question. Arguing over all this before we actually knows what CCDG is taking issue with doesn't really help us move forward. Thanks.

"Other revolutions were won when the enforcers for the government joined the rebellion."

One generally hopes for that in the case of governments which weren't just democratically elected. Because it's the opposite of "civilian control of the military", something you generally want where the civilians are a democratically elected majority party.

IOW, do you really want to cheer the police taking sides in a political dispute during working hours? And ignoring lawful orders? Because if they get into that sort of habit, don't count on them always being on YOUR side...

To what "lawful order" are you referring, Brett, by whom was it given, and under what auspices does that person have the authority to give that order? Thanks in advance!!

The news article itself states that "We have been ordered by the legislature to kick you all out at 4:00 today."

That WOULD be a lawful order, as I understand it, in as much as it's the legislature's building.

I mean, really, did you understand the protesters occupying the building to be there lawfully?

I think the police officers were not at work. They were out of uniform.

1. The legislature is not a private entity. It is elected by the people, and its buildings belong to the public.

2. So, you're suddenly not a fan of the Constitutionally guaranteed right to peaceably assemble. (Using the oh-so-scary word "occupied," in italics no less, isn't going to score you any points.)

I'm not at all surprised, but it's fun to see you admit it. Everyone knows you are only selectively in favor of a very limited number of rights, and only for certain people, but it's so rare to see you say it out loud that it really makes my day!

That's true, they could have been off duty. I took that "we" to be literal, and assumed that they switched to civies before joining the protest, as doing so in uniform would have had substantial legal implications.

I suppose we'll see today, as the deadline for the protesters to leave the building is 4:00PM today, at which point the police are supposed to escort them out.

If the protestors were in there firing off guns, Brett would be celebrating their exercise of their 2nd Amendment rights. If they hit any legislators, whooooooo, bonus!!

But because they're just working people (ewww) standing up for themselves (ugh), suddenly Brett is in favor of their suppression via state power.

The mask slips so rarely. When it does, take pictures.

I am certainly in favor of the right to peaceably assemble, with the understanding that you can't expect to do so wherever you want. If they were *outside* the building, I'd have no complaint. Their purpose in being *inside* the building is clearly to physically disrupt the conduct of government, and that I will certainly complain about.

The capital building belongs to the government, directly, to the people indirectly, and if you think "This is the people's house, I'm a person, you can't kick me out!" is a valid legal argument, you've got a surprise ahead of you. Go ahead, try it at your local capitol, I urge you.

Your side lost the last election. Now you're resorting to extra-legal means to make sure that elections don't have consequences. Don't expect anyone who doesn't already agree with you to be impressed.

Oh, and "Using the oh-so-scary word "occupied," in italics no less" was just repeating what the protesters themselves claimed to be doing. If they understand the building to be "occupied" by themselves, who am I to argue?

In regard to the "semantic b++ls++++t" upthread:


It's simple. Wisconsin state employees have a workers' comp plan. They arrange with their personnel department to have part of their own paycheck withheld and invested during their working years. After retirement they get the money back in monthly checks. Their health insurance apparently is funded the same way, out of their own checks. I say "apparently" because I am not personallly familiar with their health insurance arrangements but I worked for years as a state employee with a Wisconsin-style deferrred comp pension arrangement as did my husband.

So Gov. Walker is lying when he claims that union benefits are contributing to the deficit in Wisconsin.

Their purpose in being *inside* the building is clearly to physically disrupt the conduct of government, and that I will certainly complain about.

Really? You object to having the conduct of government disrupted? That's certainly a first. Generally you're in favor, on the record, of having government be able to accomplish as little as possible. Gee, I wonder what's changed . . . ?

Your side lost the last election. Now you're resorting to extra-legal means to make sure that elections don't have consequences.

I live in Ohio, not Wisconsin. I was not a party to their election, and I am not resorting to anything. I am sitting on my sofa drinking coffee and typing on a laptop. I know you hate human beings, and can't distinguish between one and another, but do please try to keep up.

Plus this sentiment about elections having consequences would mean a lot more coming from someone who absolutely, 100%, without doubt supported the Teabaggers trying to shout down healthcare reform at the town hall meetings across the country in 2009. You know it, I know it, so don't even try to pretend.

I did just realize what this is all about when it comes to you: Jealousy! You're always making vaguely threatening and ominous statements about the coming revolution, arguing over at The Reality Based Community that certainly there's a time when you favor politicians being shot, and telling me that affirmative action is like "dancing around a puddle of gasoline with a lit match," and so on and so forth. You just always believe -- despite all evidence that the people involved are a bunch of tough-talking cowards -- that any such action is going to come from a bunch of white right-wingers.

So when confronted with people actually taking action to stand up for their rights, and it turns out they aren't the militia or the residents of Galt's Gulch, but instead a bunch of DFH public employee union members, you go into DOES NOT COMPUTE mode.

First Gary, my apologies for the posting rules violation, it was late, but I am not a newcomer, I know better.

CCDG = Marty

everyone adjust your comment filters accordingly.

Second, It is semantic BS in the sense that the all otal comp is always negotaiated speraed across all forms of payment FOR EVERYONE.

The money paid for those benefits is paaid by the employer just like all other compensation and received differently by contract.

It is semantics whether the empolyee recives it first and then pays it or the employer pays it directly.

I will add, perhaps quickly enough, that in every reference to the changes, it has beeen reported accurately that the proporsed changes would reduce the TOTAL compensation of state workers by some percetgage paid to allow them to fund these benefits.

I wonder if David Cay Johnston would, out of consistency, also argue that corporate income taxes are passed on to the consumer of the corporation's products?

The topic of transferring costs to employees is an interesting discussion, at least in abstract. Why do employers do that, if it's equivalent to a pay cut? I ask that out of genuine curiosity. My own employer has been steadily transferring health insurance costs on to the employees, and has been doing that even in times where it needed to keep raising wages to keep compensation competetive.

My ignorance of how this is supposed to work is more than a little disappointing to me.

I also wonder when the "Koch is just going for the power utilities to get even more rich" drum is going to stop beating, now that TPM Muckraker has found it wanting?

Slart,

The simple answer is that the employees in a private setting simply forget to count the cost of insurance in their total comp because the actual cost is not visible to them.

So to be able to maximize the amount that is visible to them the rapid increase in health costs has been shared more to increase that visibility while allowing for wages to be a little higher.

In hiring practices you can offer 5k more in base and take 3k back in insurance costs and people will still take it, don't ask me why but every employer will tell you it's true. Very few people will ask how much they will pay for insurance before they are hired, and that number changes every year.

It is an example of Reductio ad Hitlerum and it was taken from here not original zerohedge post.

From your Wikipedia link:

Engaging in this fallacy is sometimes known as playing the Nazi card,[1] by analogy to playing the race card

Sometimes there are problems with getting too attached with cute neologisms; there's definitely a problem with this one in the context it was used.

I recommend sticking with more conventional taxonomies (e.g. here, or here, as examples) of logical fallacy. You're free to do as you wish, of course.


Slarti,

Would it make sense to say that wages are "contributed" by the employer?

I wouldn't have used that word, no.

Compensation is compensation. Some compensation is, effectively, voluntary. But not much of it. If you, for instance, had a company matching tax-deferred savings plan that you chose not to participate in, it might be accurate to refer to such things as "contributions". Everything else, though, is compensation. IMHO, of course.

Slarti
This is the definition of Reductio ad Hitlerum: It is a fallacy of irrelevance where a conclusion is suggested based solely on something or someone's origin rather than its current meaning or context.

Gary was saying that the post i cited(zerohedge) has no merit because of their disclaimer(origin), hence anything they say(context) has no merit.
Truth is, zerohedge is full of paranoid and manipulative posts, especially if you read commentaries. To me they are invaluable source of financial informations, which i compare to informations from other sources in order to trust. they are with extreme republican/liberaterian bias but its easy to ignore that.

That bit that I quoted, above, about:

Engaging in this fallacy is sometimes known as playing the Nazi card,[1] by analogy to playing the race card

occurs in the paragraph after the definition that you cut-and-pasted, above. If it means one thing, then it's got the playing-the-Nazi-card meaning, too, doesn't it?

Gary was saying that the post i cited(zerohedge) has no merit because of their disclaimer(origin), hence anything they say(context) has no merit.

No, that's not what Gary was saying. He's asking you why you think you can believe that one source, the one that actually (unlike many other places, including this one) says that, hey, we could be wrong. They're not some shrine of infallibility. No one is. So, if you want to adopt and advocate zerohedge's POV on something, you'd best be prepared to defend that POV, because zerohedge isn't going to necessarily jump in and help you out, here.

Come to your own conclusions, in general, so that you can defend them yourself.

Not presuming to speak for Gary; the above is more my interpretation of what he's said to you.

"I wouldn't have used that word, no."

Well, that is the logical implication of your query of DC Johnston's "consistency".

My company has a Simple IRA with employer matching. Participation is voluntary. Those who do not participate get a higher cash wage than those who see the deduction each pay period on their check stub. Those who take the cash up front obviously have a very high liquidity preference, because they are essentially working for a lower wage than participants.

From the standpoint of the firm, this is a clever way to have some of the work done at less labor cost. It is not "voluntary" (On the revenue side, see market segmentation.)

The employer "contribution" (and similarly the corporate income tax) is a cost of doing business. It is a labor cost---part of the overall wage structure of the firm in (one assumes) what is called "conditions of market competition" in micro-economics. It does not fall from the sky or from "the taxpayers" in the instance of public employees.

If you insist that these costs are 'voluntary', you impute some kind of altruism to (some) firms, which in turn raises their marginal costs and lowers profitability. If one "believes" in the Theory of Pure Competition this can only be seen as irrational....a market breakdown.

Seen in this light, the stalwarts of "The Free Market" are actually arguing that markets do not work!

Now CCDG can call this whatever animal product he likes, but it is the theory that, under any other circumstances, they claim they are willing to die for.

Which is another way of saying that conservatives are in fact bullsh*tters for the rich and powerful.

With the Left trying to intimidate the Koch brothers to back off of their support for freedom and signaling to others that this is what happens if you oppose the administration and its allies, we have no choice but to continue to fight

See, this is what gets up my nose. Busting unions and deregulating industry is all about "freedom", apparently.

Busting unions and deregulating industry is about favoring the interests of owners of commercial enterprises over those of other stakeholders in those enterprises, and/or other folks who are affected by their activities.

The United States was not established to be a capitalist empire. Not even a capitalist republic. Just a republic.

Breaking labor and deregulating industry is not about freedom, and f**k the Koch's and their PR lackey for claiming that it is. Go straight to hell, boyos.

In any case, I welcome the Koch's continued participation in our political process. They're putting the spine back in the middle class. Their emergence as public figures is a gift to working people everywhere.

Now you're resorting to extra-legal means to make sure that elections don't have consequences. Don't expect anyone who doesn't already agree with you to be impressed.

The folks in WI don't give a single freaking turd if you are impressed with them or not. They want to retain the right to bargain collectively. Full stop.

Strikes, civil disobedience, and other public actions bug you? That's why we have collective bargaining.

This whole thing is a situation that should never have happened. I'm personally glad it did, because it has galvanized middle class people, who are finally figuring out they're getting screwed eight ways to Sunday, and it's scared the crap out of other governors who had similar agendas. But if Walker had any skill whatsoever, he would have gotten most or all of his agenda without the crapstorm.

Public employees need to give back some benefits? He could have sold that in a walk. Then, let the unions kick up a fuss, *then* claim he needs to 86 collective bargaining.

But no, he had to have it all right at the jump. Before he's even been in office for month.

The man is a bonehead.

Works for me.

I am certainly in favor of the right to peaceably assemble, with the understanding that you can't expect to do so wherever you want.

Trust me when I say I've made a solid mental note of your caveat here.

In hiring practices you can offer 5k more in base and take 3k back in insurance costs and people will still take it, don't ask me why but every employer will tell you it's true.

Thanks for sharing this interesting insight from the ownership / management side of the house. If I'm not mistaken, we're in similar industries. I'll keep all of this in mind next time I negotiate compensation.

You gotta watch your back every minute, y'all. Sucks, doesn't it?

I wonder if there is anybody in the entire freaking country who has ever considered the value -- the pure, keeping it real, dollar value -- of the time, effort, and good will that gets pissed away each and every day by our adversarial approach to managing the relationships between ownership, management, and labor.

All factors of production, all conceptually engaged in the same project, and all at each others' throats 24/7.

It's a monumental waste of time and energy.

I also wonder when the "Koch is just going for the power utilities to get even more rich" drum is going to stop beating, now that TPM Muckraker has found it wanting?

Hmmmmm . . .

[q]Just days after appearing on TV and radio in Chicago to remind Illinois that Wisconsin is open for business, Governor Walker introduced a bill that would essentially ban wind development in Wisconsin. The move would leave Wisconsin dependent on other states, including Illinois, to meet our energy demand.

In the bill introduced for consideration in the special session, Governor Walker suggests placing regulations on wind development that are so restrictive, they would essentially prohibit the development of future wind projects in Wisconsin, and even stop some already on the docket. If passed, it's estimated that Wisconsin will immediately lose $1.8 billion in new wind power investments and jeopardize eleven currently proposed wind projects. Illinois has no restrictions on wind siting.

Wisconsin currently ranks fifth in the nation in the portion of its electricity derived from imported coal. Wisconsin sends more than $850 million out of state every year to places like Indiana, Wyoming, and Illinois to purchase coal.

"While other states are moving forward with their own energy independence, it appears Governor Walker wants Wisconsin to remain dependent on places like Illinois for our dirty coal habit. This move is sending a very dangerous message to the global wind industry. From those who install wind turbines to those who manufacture them, Governor Walker is suggesting they take their business elsewhere," said Kerry Schumann, Executive Director of Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters.[/q]

I wonder who the largest out-of-state supplier of coal to Wisconsin is? I wonder . . .

Well, that is the logical implication of your query of DC Johnston's "consistency".

No, I don't think you've read me correctly. I'm not saying Johnston is incorrect.

I'm going to have to think up a better way to put this, apparently. I blame myself (about 0:20 in).

I wonder who the largest out-of-state supplier of coal to Wisconsin is? I wonder . . .

Be sure and let us know, once you've figured it out. But: relevant to what I was saying, how?

If you insist that these costs are 'voluntary'

If you insist that "up" is really "down", I'm going to have to ridicule you.

CCDG = Marty

Thanks for mentioning that.

It's what I read off your IP address when I made a point of checking, but didn't want to make a point of it, and say you were sock-puppeting; there are many innocent reasons for accidentally using another handle, and other reasons the IP could have been used here only by both Marty and CCDG, and you as Marty also use other IPs, which is entirely reasonable, and so on.

novakant:

It's obvious that your comment is an argument from authority, namely Johnston's authority.
Ah, the "'it's obvious' argument." Okay.

Do I claim only authority by virtue of title?

In the comment I was responding to you do, citing Johnston's achievements to prove his authority on the matter.

I disagree with your interpretation of my words.

I repeat that I believe I wasn't doing such a thing; you're entitled to your own interpretation. Thanks for your opinion. Carry on.

We've now also leapt into Mike Godwin's territory:

Godwin's Law: prov.

[Usenet] “As a Usenet discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one.” There is a tradition in many groups that, once this occurs, that thread is over, and whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically lost whatever argument was in progress. Godwin's Law thus practically guarantees the existence of an upper bound on thread length in those groups. However there is also a widely- recognized codicil that any intentional triggering of Godwin's Law in order to invoke its thread-ending effects will be unsuccessful. Godwin himself has discussed the subject. See also Formosa's Law.

HTH. HAND.

Godwin himself has discussed the subject.

NO RECURSION IN COMMENTS! YOU WILL BREAK DA INNERNETS!

It's what I read off your IP address when I made a point of checking, but didn't want to make a point of it, and say you were sock-puppeting

Dude, no sock-puppeting involved, it was just a joke.

CCDG is "centrist-conservative Dobie Gillis", which was Marty's very well-played response to Countme's (that other noob) needling in another thread. Also the name of Marty's mojito-and-blues-fueled political movement.

One which has tremendous appeal, although sadly one in which I cannot participate, as my allegiance remains rive gauche, with a nice Cote du Rhone and vintage Mingus.

If you insist that "up" is really "down", I'm going to have to ridicule you.

You're the one making the self-refuting argument about 'voluntary' contributions. Congratulations. To paraphrase FDR, "I welcome your ridicule".

Which bits are self-refuting? Please quote me, when answering.

and it's scared the crap out of other governors who had similar agendas.
For reasons of brevity, I neglected to point out what is obvious to some, not to others, which is that Mitch Daniels, Governor of Indiana is running for President.

And he's one of the most sane Republicans.

Some context:

Mitchell Elias "Mitch" Daniels, Jr., (born April 7, 1949) is the 49th and current Governor of the U.S. state of Indiana. A Republican, he began his first four-year term as Indiana's 49th Governor on January 10, 2005, and was elected to his second term by an 18-point margin on November 4, 2008. Previously, he was the Director of the U.S. Office of Management and Budget under George W. Bush. He also worked for Eli Lilly and Company. He is cited as a rising star in the Republican Party.[1][2][3]

Upon becoming Governor, Daniels pressed for a series of changes that brought him into conflict with both Republicans and Democrats. During his first year in office, he proposed a number of tax increases, budget cuts, and privatization plans to balance the budget. Because of the opposition led by Republican Speaker of the House Brian Bosma, only two of the new taxes were approved. Support for a switch to daylight saving time, the privatization of the Indiana Toll Road, and the closure of many license branches brought him into conflict with Democrats; and, in 2005, his approval ratings dropped to 42%. In 2007, he began pressing for constitutional changes to cap State property taxes at 1-3% of value. The caps were approved by the Indiana General Assembly as statute, and the resulting drop in revenue was offset by an increase in the State sales tax. His support for the property tax limits, and its subsequent adoption, helped raise his popularity and secure his re-election bid. His second term saw a major drop in State revenues, leading to major spending cuts to maintain a balanced budget.

For those not following the program, Daniels has always been a budget guy. As Republican officials and elected Republican officals go, he's not an extremist.

He's also a much more experienced hand than Governor Scott Walker, period.

He capped the property tax, making him heroic to homeowners, those genuinely stuck with overly high property taxes -- this has genuine pros and cons, but is in general regressive, and regressively raised the sales tax, which largely hits the poor disproportionately, because they are, you know, poor, so those little bites hurt much more when you can't afford much.

But his limit on property taxes, popular with much of the middle class meant that Mr. Budget Expert Moderate caused a"major drop in State revenue" when he then cures by more "major spending cuts" in government, and is that cutting "waste" or costing, in the long run, more for government? Are those services genuinely helpful to people, or will they cause more people to complain that Government Isn't Efficient?

Does the profit motive which comes into play when you privatize always lead to lower costs to the citizens? I suggest not, though sometimes.

Who does it hit most badly? Poor, middle class, upper class?

Discuss.

Please quote me, when answering.

See your post @ 10:45 above. You termed "some compensation" is ...."voluntary" and imply it is somehow a "contribution" which is, in some strange way, different than compensation.

When I write (quite politely for me, I might add) to express some mild disagreement with this, you logically threatened to ridicule me. Now I have been ridiculed by the best, but that really hurt my feelings (insert snicker here).

"You gotta watch your back every minute, y'all. Sucks, doesn't it?

I wonder if there is anybody in the entire freaking country who has ever considered the value -- the pure, keeping it real, dollar value -- of the time, effort, and good will that gets pissed away each and every day by our adversarial approach to managing the relationships between ownership, management, and labor."

I have. And just a glimpse from management. We carried one hundred percent benefits for years, and a rich cadillac health plan to boot, for years after our competition had started to ask their employees to pay up to 25-30% for their health care. we had a limited 401(k) match which few participated in and a fairly rich stock purchase match.

We found we were regularly losing employees to the most trivial salary differences both in the hiring and retention processes in our business.

So you can say that you have to "watch your back" but the reality is we adjusted to what people demanded for compensation structure.

Here is a very good description of what is going on in WI and elswhere. And this is on a previously pure conservative site. There is a chance that liberals and true conservatives can unite around this.

And here is Emmanuel Wallerstein

It's unsurprising you'd find both agreeable, since they are the same piece. Citing it the same piece twice, with two different links, doesn't actually double the support for it.

The Zero Hedge link: "Submitted by David DeGraw from Amped Status"

The Ampted Status link.

Both are the same piece by Wallerstein. You appear not to notice. But you like both. Not surprising. You like them even better when you reread them. But you reread them, and don't notice they're identical.

May I ask why?

However, Immanuel Wallerstein is an interesting guy. You might like his own actual website.

If you look forward to more recent material by him, try reading it; that's from Feburary 15th.

HTH.

novakant, let's return for a moment: Generally, you use a large number of links to bolster your points True.

and criticize people for not doing the same.
Do I? Perhaps so. Cite, please? 3 will do. Go for one, if you like. I'm imperfect, so I believe you might be write.

But since I do it frequently enough, you say/imply, for you to seem to assert that I do it generally, it should be trivial to bring us an example of me doing it once.

Showing me three examples of my criticizing people for not "use[ing] a large number of links to bolster your points" -- not specific claim you are making, please -- would educate me, and help me in future avoid making this error.

I'd like you to help me lessen my faults, by bringing my bad habit here, that you assert, to my attention. Three examples would help me a lot with this.

If I do do it frequently, it should, again, be easy for you to find me engaging in such a possible frequent habit.

Thanks! I appreciate the help.

You termed "some compensation" is ...."voluntary" and imply it is somehow a "contribution" which is, in some strange way, different than compensation.

Thanks for using ellipses to obliterate my point. It was only a point by analogy; a parenthetical if you will.


But in the interests of clarification: you've heard of voluntary-participation in savings programs where the employee's voluntary contribution is matched?

It's the employee's voluntary contribution to that kind of account that I'd call contribution. The employer's match to that would be compensation. It's usually called a contribution, and I'll leave it to those more inclined to hairsplitting than I to sort that out.

I hope this helps.

I apologize if that's so dead-obvious that it looks as if I'm saying something else.

When I write (quite politely for me, I might add) to express some mild disagreement with this, you logically threatened to ridicule me.

Only if you keep on insisting that I said the opposite of what I said, note. Are you going to keep doing that?

but the reality is we adjusted to what people demanded for compensation structure.

Indeed. Absent less whining for lower wages, the beatings shall continue.

I apologize if that's so dead-obvious that it looks as if I'm saying something else.

It did. Apology accepted.

Gary, you do realize that you just asked me to provide three cites to support my claim in response to a post of mine criticizing you for excessively asking people to provide cites, no?

I have.

I believe this. I don't generally see you as a particularly anti-worker guy.

So you can say that you have to "watch your back" but the reality is we adjusted to what people demanded for compensation structure.

Fair enough, and in fact after writing it occurred to me that my reading of your comment was overly suspicious. Apologies.

Although I think folks do, generally, have to watch their backs, which is, basically, a counter-productive PITA. For all concerned.

The fact, with which I think you'll be in general agreement, is that our current situation places labor and management + ownership in adversarial roles. It's not productive.

Gary, i pointed out Ampted Status link in order to point out to you that it is not original ZeroHedge post, but a guest post from David DeGraw. Not that i did not notice that it is the same thing.
On the other hand, my link for Wallerstein is pointed to the same commentary as yours from his actual website.
My link gives a http://fbc.binghamton.edu/cmpg.htm>link for 13 years of Wallerstein commentaries where you can read his analysis points to consequences of actions from that time. If anyone has time to read them might find it astonishingly accurate predictions of future that was. Which indicate that what he says now is very likely accurate predictions of things to come.

russell:

I wonder if there is anybody in the entire freaking country who has ever considered the value -- the pure, keeping it real, dollar value -- of the time, effort, and good will that gets pissed away each and every day by our adversarial approach to managing the relationships between ownership, management, and labor.
I like to think I greatly appreciate it as a generality, and it's an essential part of my underlying politics and approach, but I have no metric or formula for the specifics, so I can't say that I have any specific dollar amounts in mind, but I'm sure that's not what you were asking for. :-)

It's what one calls a "rhetorical question," but I thought I'd give my answer, anyway, because that, also, is the way I swing.

Marty, because I argue with you so often, I want to say, without having the time to identify and respond to specific comments, that I value your comments from the perspective of management, and in fact often agree with many of your points, I do agree that unions are not Unalloyed Good, there are corrupt union locals and unions, there are abuses it's not black and white, and that in general you often make many good points, as well as those I argue with, but it's much easier and more tempting to single out the stuff to disagree with, so I'm Lazily trying to catch up by noting that you do, in fact, often make valuable and good points, and I thank you for them.

Gary, on the other hand, if you were trying to say that those two posts, One on the hard right and another on the left websites are saying same things and advocating for the same development, then that is point of my sentence from the comment you criticized:"Here is a very good description of what is going on in WI and elswhere. And this is on a previously pure conservative site. There is a chance that liberals and true conservatives can unite around this."

Gary, you do realize that you just asked me to provide three cites to support my claim in response to a post of mine criticizing you for excessively asking people to provide cites, no?
I do notice that I wrote:
3 will do. Go for one, if you like. I'm imperfect, so I believe you might be write.

But since I do it frequently enough, you say/imply, for you to seem to assert that I do it generally, it should be trivial to bring us an example of me doing it once.

Showing me three examples of my criticizing people for not "use[ing] a large number of links to bolster your points" -- not specific claim you are making, please -- would educate me, and help me in future avoid making this error.

I'd like you to help me lessen my faults, by bringing my bad habit here, that you assert, to my attention. Three examples would help me a lot with this.

If I do do it frequently, it should, again, be easy for you to find me engaging in such a possible frequent habit.

Thanks! I appreciate the help.

I apolgize for such an "excessive" request for help.

I believe I'll decline additional recursion now.

ct:

There is a chance that liberals and true conservatives can unite around this."
Yes, there is.

Thanks Gary. It is always easier, and generates more discussion, to respond to the things we disagree with.

In this very post I chose to comment on the one section that I disgreed with most heartily while not going through each part to note where I agreed and disagreed. Although there was some of each.

I find this article from http://www.iwallerstein.com/wp-content/uploads/docs/AGFCONMR.PDF>Wallerstein a revelation of the historic importance to the left of the world.

CT, I don't find it at all a "revelation," and I'm agnostic about how useful the WSF is, and the last half is essentially belly-button examining of the role of the WSF, but otherwise I pretty much completely agree with what Wallerstein wrote/said there.

I promise you that I read every word.

But also that I have endlessly long held the same opinions.

I don't write long formal pieces, though.

It would be nice to have Hilzoy's rephrasing/view.

But I do agree that everyone might benefit from reading up to "It is only with the crea tion of the WSF in 2001 that there hascome into existence a structure within which an alternative strategy for
the middle run may possibly be developed."

After that, I'm agnostic, because I haven't looked at the WSF enough, and have no opinion as to how important/unimportant it may turn out to be.

But I'll endorse more or less everything in the first half, and I'll suggest that anyone who approaches the topic from the angles of singularity theory can't help but agree.

All these economic/social issues will be irrelevant in fifty years, due to technological changes, in short.

A world with nanoreplicators is a world with a radically different economy. How that social change will take place, I make no predictions, save that the rich will benefit first until we no longer have meaningful distinctions, and then it doesn't matter, because this will happen after I'm dead.

If someone makes a clone of me and recreates a simulacrum of my mind, in future, ask me/him what I think then. :-)

"Really? You object to having the conduct of government disrupted? That's certainly a first. Generally you're in favor, on the record, of having government be able to accomplish as little as possible. Gee, I wonder what's changed . . . ?"

Nothing has changed. I'm in favor of having government do very little. I'm in favor of it doing very little because the law directs it to do very little, rather than doing very little because the losers of elections physically impede it's operations.

Look, government is an incredibly dangerous institution. It's capable of genocide, of ruining a society, of horrific evils. It's capable of horribly messing things up even out of benign motives. The rule of law, strict compliance with procedure, is a major safeguard against it running amok.

But you don't have standing to insist on the government being bound by the rule of law, and having to follow procedures, if you're not willing to be so bound yourself. That goes for your political opponents, too. How can you approve of your own side doing anything you'd disapprove of when done by your opponents?

I've taken part in protests before. I did so *legally*, we protested outside the building, and we left the place cleaner than when we came. And it wasn't just because the police had snipers posted on the rooftops of nearby buildings, either. (Funny how people get paranoid if you're protesting a gun control law...)

Now, the Republicans in Congress tried to impede the activities of the then Democratic majority last year, but they did so in compliance with the standing rules of the institution. While the Wisconsin Democrats have done so in violation of those standing rules. That's a significant difference in my book.

I realize it's not a significant difference in your book. That's because the only difference that's significant in the minds of a lot of the people commenting here, is whether it's your side, or the other side. If it were the Tea party occupying that building, and the cops refused an order to evict them, and joined them instead, you'd freak. Seriously, you would.

I don't have a very high opinion of that kind of thinking.

And, yeah, there are circumstances under which I favor politicians being shot. I damned well hope there are for you, too. Or maybe you think the Gadafhi should feel safe right now walking the streets of Tripoli? Yes, you probably think there are circumstances under which politicians should be shot, and while you probably disagree with me at the margins, hopefully we have this much in common:

Those circumstances are distant from the ones we currently find ourselves under.

I am in full agreement with you, Gary, in a sense that WSF will not have a significant influence on US, but on the world at large, hence my wording: "historic importance to the left of the world".
I have had those views for last 9 years, not as long as you, but revelation importance is for others less involved with politics, for those that the recent economic crash had suddenly thrown into the public conversation about politics. And there is many as that. Existence of the Tea Party and the lack of historic and economic comprehension their views are showing is the proof that they are newcomers to the debate, and there is many of them.
In my view, republicans display just a very superficial, shallow knowledge of history and economic principles. If they allow themselves to get deeper into it, they will come to the same conclusion as liberals have.
Talking about history of the FDR and how his actions created the middle class and about economic basics is the only matter that is worth debating with republicans. Everything else is sidetracking into oblivion.

I always thought that contracts were among the key pillars of The Rule of Law. One kind of contract is an agreement to exchange current labor for current AND FUTURE compensation. How sincerely do we believe in The Rule of Law if it's acceptable for one party to renege on a contract on the excuse that "We're broke", but unacceptable for the counter-party to protest effectively?

--TP

Brett
"Look, government is an incredibly dangerous institution. It's capable of genocide, of ruining a society, of horrific evils. It's capable of horribly messing things up even out of benign motives. The rule of law, strict compliance with procedure, is a major safeguard against it running amok."

It is easy to find negative sides of anything you desire to find, it indicates hate. Love is finding only positive sides, and world is gray as we all know it, not black and white as children see it.
You see, governments are also capable of awesome goodness. For example: organising the millions of people in war against Nazy and Japan, declaring Emancipation proclamation, Civil rights acts that was needed due to inaction of the government in previous years. Government is capable of Writing Declaration of Independence, Constitution of the US, Its amendments. Or do you want to argue that Founding fathers did that as individuals, as corporation, or a part of Free Masons. Do you think that FF were not doing it as government?

Scratch a libertarian, find an authoritarian.

And, yeah, there are circumstances under which I favor politicians being shot. I damned well hope there are for you, too. Or maybe you think the Gadafhi should feel safe right now walking the streets of Tripoli?

Whatever else Col. Gadafhis is, he is not a "politician" as the word is commonly understood. That you cannot tell the difference reveals everything that's wrong in your head and your soul.

"Look, government is an incredibly dangerous institution. It's capable of genocide, of ruining a society, of horrific evils. It's capable of horribly messing things up even out of benign motives. The rule of law, strict compliance with procedure, is a major safeguard against it running amok."

And it all starts with telling the police to turn on the people they are supposed to protect. And the government will only engage in those evils when the people taking instructions from the government go along with their orders.

This is something I think you fail to understand-- that any institution, to function, ultimately depends on the consent of the rank-and-file on the front lines, not simply the caprice of those at the top. You can't make workers do something they, ultimately, refuse to do.

Next from Brett: anger that those darned "outside agitators" in the south are telling people to illegally sit in restaurants where they're not allowed to!

Scratch a libertarian, find an authoritarian.

That was every bit as useful as any of the "scratch a liberal" sayings, Phil.

What, you're going to ding me for . . . brevity, glibness, what?

You're just in danger of turning into the right-wing posters we had to ban for repeated incivility, Phil.

Or, you know, Charles.

I'd like to believe that you can exert some self-control over your inner rhetorical pugilist.

Oh, brother.

Just so I've got this clear, if last year Tea party members had physically occupied the Capitol building in Washington, in an effort to scare Democratic legislators into not passing Obamacare, you'd have been cool with that?

Brett
But what would Tea Party's message in order to stop Obamacare? Take our country back? Get the government out of my Medicare?
If Tea party occupied Capitol building without Nazy slogans, Obama/hitler pics in a non-violent manner as WI protesters i would not have problems with that. If they did it with original intent they started with: "no bailout" I would have joined them.
But what was the message of Tea Party when they protested Obamacare? Is there any reality, any factual arguments?

I'll answer with a question of my own: You believe that there are some circumstances under which it's acceptable -- nay, imperative!! -- to break the rules (for which you may read, "Shoot a politician" or, if it makes you feel better, "jury nullification"), but other circumstances in which it's an absolutely unalloyed moral and civil wrong (for which you may read "hold a protest in the halls of the legislature, under risk of arrest"). And that you, Brett Bellmore, and you alone are capable of telling the difference.

That about right?

(Tyro's point is absolutely on target -- you'd have been telling black people that they were in the wrong for sitting at the Woolworth's lunch counter, because it was against the rules. Which means, despite Slarti's pearl-clutching or whatever he thinks he's doing, I'm right: You're not a libertarian, you're an authoritarian. You just think you should be the authority in question.)

Also and JFTR anyone who uses the word "Obamacare" is an infant, not a person with opinions worth listening to.

In the good old days, when we had a protest, or occupied a building, we considered pretty much a failure unless the police carried us out.

I guess times change. Now we are the police and we just join in. Who says our generation hasn't changed things.

Phil, I know Brett really gets up your nose, but I think you make your point even stronger if you just go for one well placed comment rather than a flurry of response. I realize that it is a target rich environment, but I think it would ultimately work out better.

Phil, i agree with lj, and to add, do not make personal attacks, it makes it much harder to be understood, stay on the arguments

I don't think two consecutive comments, one of which was clearly an afterthought, counts as a "flurry," lj.

I think you make your point even stronger if you just go for one well placed comment rather than a flurry of response.

I shudder to think of how strong Gary's comments might be were he to adhere to this suggestion.

Phil:

So, you're comfortable with statements like: scratch a liberal, find an aspiring mass-murdering Marxist?

You think that's in line with the posting rules, and years of ObWi tradition, if I'm reading you right.

Hopefully I'm horribly mistaken, and you'll unpack scratch a libertarian, find an authoritarian into something resembling an argument that's relevant to, well, anything at all.

And sure enough to make my point:

"Sue Knetsch, 53, of Waupaca, said she stayed away from the Capitol throughout the nearly two weeks of protests, but that she brought her 21-year-old son, Taylor, to the Capitol on Sunday as an a lesson in democracy. She said they expected to get arrested together.

"I just want him to know you can do something -- his generation is walking around passively saying, 'It doesn't matter,'" said Knetsch, who said she had been arrested at age 17 while protesting the Vietnam War. "This is awesome. I'm a little nostalgic."

As the deadline to leave passed, hundreds of protesters on the Capitol's upper floors picked up their energy level, chanting "peaceful protest," and "whose house is this? Our house." At one point, the crowd sang the national anthem. Many said they were prepared to be arrested -- if it came to that.

(bold mine)

this is about our freedoms and democracy. If the unions are busted, they were the only firewall between the middle class and the corporations. If the unions are busted what will happen to the middle class? We will be the mercy of the corporations, and the Republican party.

So, you're comfortable with statements like: scratch a liberal, find an aspiring mass-murdering Marxist?

The fact that you can find a formulation using the same structure that's patently ridiculous doesn't make every formulation with the same structure equally ridiculous. I know that you know this.

Or, heck, maybe you don't. I can't read your mind, but you've previously shown an inclination towards understanding that, because two things look alike at first glance, it doesn't mean they're actually similar or related.

Hopefully I'm horribly mistaken, and you'll unpack scratch a libertarian, find an authoritarian into something resembling an argument that's relevant to, well, anything at all.

I think I've made my point in re: Brett and his fair-weather libertarianism, which is really running interference for authoritarianism, quite clearly. If that particular phrase bothers you so much, fine -- I spoke hastily, as its implications are an insult to actual libertarians like Jim Henley and Radley Balko.

Do you have a further point with this, or . . . ?

Phil,
it's just an overall reminder. I know (believe me, I do know) what it is like to post a comment, and then look over what you had written and think 'crap, I missed responding to this glaring inconsistency!'

I really really really don't make this some sort of discussion on precisely where we should draw the line on any number of things in the comments or about the content of any specific comment or comment thread, (especially since I will be over the Pacific in about 24 hours, with all the joy that entails) so this isn't even a 'hey knock it off' kind of comment, just the gentlest suggestion to you and everyone else and I certify that no pearls were clutched. Thanks.

I'd like to know whether "Scratch a libertarian, find an authoritarian" is more offensive to libertarians or to authoritarians.

I'm not saying Phil's maxim is either true or false. I am saying that Slarti's response seems to assume that the maxim is offensive to somebody, and I wonder to whom.

--TP

The fact that you can find a formulation using the same structure that's patently ridiculous doesn't make every formulation with the same structure equally ridiculous.

Likewise, the fact that I came up with a patently ridiculous formulation using the same structure doesn't mean that yours wasn't ridiculous.

But I think you know this.

If I'm not making my point sufficiently clear, though, I'm asking that you cease and desist with the meaningless generalizations crap. If you have a point to make with Brett, I'm hoping that you can manage to do so without impugning perhaps a good chunk of the United States.

Or maybe not. But hope springs eternal.

Look! Cliches are fun!

I spoke hastily, as its implications are an insult to actual libertarians like Jim Henley and Radley Balko.

Excellent, Phil.

I'd like to know whether "Scratch a libertarian, find an authoritarian" is more offensive to libertarians or to authoritarians.

Not so excellent, Tony. See Phil for details.

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Whatnot


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