Thursday, July 11, 2013

The Bullsh!t Detector

Right-Wing Mythology 101: the MYTHs that the right-wing scam is built upon (A Taxing Matter). A sampling:
Right-Wing MYTH 1: Higher taxes on the wealthy result in less revenues, because rich people flee from high-tax jurisdictions to low-tax jurisdictions.

Right-Wing MYTH 2: America is a classless society, with considerable mobility between income distributions from year to year, and an opportunity for anyone to make it to great riches on his or her own merit. Anybody who pretends otherwise is engaging in class warfare.

Right-Wing MYTH 5: The U.S. debt burden is unsustainably high and will cause the economy to crash--like a family, the US government should not use debt to make up for revenue shortfalls to pay for the budgeted spending.

Right-Wing MYTH 7: Government spending is always worse than private spending (this is one version of the "privatization" leg of the reaganomics economic stool)

Right-Wing MYTH 12:  Unions are harmful to the US economy, and it is important not to allow a "card-check" system for union approval, in order to protect employees from a union they don't want.

Right-Wing MYTH 14:  A truly free market is the secret of a great economy, and the free market economy works best when taxes are very very low.

Right-Wing MYTH 15: The wealthy are the job creators.
About that last one:

A one percenter tells the truth about "job creators"(Hullabaloo)
...That’s why our current policies are so upside down. When you have a tax system in which most of the exemptions and the lowest rates benefit the richest, all in the name of job creation, all that happens is that the rich get richer. Since 1980 the share of income for the richest 1% of Americans has tripled while our effective tax rates have by approximately 50%. If it were true that lower tax rates and more wealth for the wealthy would lead to more job creation, then today we would be drowning in jobs. If it was true that more profit for corporations or lower tax rates for corporations lead to more job creation, then it could not also be true that both corporate profits and unemployment are at 50 year highs.
There can never be enough super rich Americans like me to power a great economy. I earn 1000 times the median wage, but I do not buy 1000 times as much stuff. My family owns three cars, not 3,000. I buy a few pairs of pants and a few shirts a year, just like most American men. Like everyone else, we go out to eat with friends and family only occasionally. I can’t buy enough of anything to make up for the fact that millions of unemployed and underemployed Americans can’t buy any new clothes or cars or enjoy any meals out. Or to make up for the decreasing consumption of the vast majority of American families that are barely squeaking by, buried by spiraling costs and trapped by stagnant or declining wages.This is why the fast increasing inequality in our society is killing our economy. When most of the money in the economy ends up in just a few hands, it strangles consumption and creates a death spiral of falling demand.
This is essentially the exact same content as his TED Talk that was "censored" for being being insufficiently deferential to the fat cats in attendance and not telling them what they wanted to hear.

And as for #7:  'The private sector is superior'. Time to move on from this old dogma (Guardian)

Finally, Econ 101 is killing America (Salon):
Myth 1: Economics is a science.
Myth 2: The goal of economic policy is maximizing efficiency.
Myth 3: The economy is a market.
Myth 4: Prices reflect value.
Myth 5:  All profitable activities are good for the economy.
Myth 6:  Monopolies and oligopolies are always bad because they distort prices.
Myth 7: Low wages are good for the economy.
Myth 8: “Industrial policy” is bad.
Myth 9: The best tax code is one that doesn’t pick winners.
Myth 10: Trade is always win-win.
BONUS: discussion of above on The Big Picture blog

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