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Quietly Thinking Out Loud

Just one guy thinking out loud on the issues in religion, atheism, politics & science.

Dennis Prager and His Support for a Madman

Once upon a time Dennis Prager used to be a conservative figure I held some respect for and who’s views I appreciated and explored to both challenge my own thinking and with his PragerU project, gain an insight into what I guess I would call ‘well thought out conservatism‘. I’m changing my mind in that regard.

He is a great example of how many conservative Republican will sell their political souls to the devil. Donald Trump is the embodiment of all the things Dennis Prager has set up as Liberal straw men and attacked.

Dennis Prager Puts Defeating Clinton Ahead of All His Other Principles

The corrupting logic that the public moralist embraced to justify his endorsement of an immoral man. The talk-radio host, writer, and speaker Dennis Prager has spent most of his career as an unapologetic public moralist who champions Judeo-Christian values in American life. He believes that it is important for public figures to be good role models.


My Short Quick Take on Trump Economic Policy…

My short quick take on Trump economic policy…

I think there is a good argument to be made that Trump’s bad economic policy ideas are worse than his personality and social conduct.

What few and vague actual economic policy ideas he has actually codified are economically ruinous which is why not a single one of the business leaders of Fortune 100 Companies is backing him. NOT A SINGLE ONE! (No CEOs at Fortune 100 Companies Are Backing Donald Trump)

And markets around the world are on edge (or hedging) worrying about a Trump Presidency driving a world wide recession or depression based on his threats to default on US debt if his revenue plans fall short (economists say they will, his GDP growth rates are pipe dreams) and to then try to renegotiate the debt destroying the good faith and credit the world has in the U.S. for decades if not a century. (Trump’s Comments on U.S. Debt Seen as Non-Starter by Bond Market – Bloomberg)

Promising the biggest tax cuts in history while dramatically increasing spending on immigration and the military will explode the debt and wipe out the reductions in the deficit we’ve achieved over that last eight years.

We already spend more on the military than next 8 nations combined and that spending is roughly equivalent to over half of all the income tax collected!

And beyond just the increase in spending to build a wall (Trump says $12 Billion and other analysts say its more like $25 Billion) it still needs to be financed by debt and it debt that will never be paid for. Saying Mexico will pay for it is a ridiculous pipe dream. In a country with a failing infrastructure building we don’t need to waste money on a project that is the definition of the word boondoggle.

And the cost of about $10,000 to deport each undocumented immigrant for a total of $400 and $600 Billion to apprehend, detain, process, and transport them all back to their countries you have the secondary economic costs of such an action is also just more debt to throw on the pile.

Deporting such a sizable segment of our agriculture farm and construction labor will boost food and housing costs for everyone. There would be empty shelves with food shortages everywhere (just like in Russia) and our food prices would go up 5-20%. Since 1-1-1/2% of the US’s GDP—comes from farms what will this do to Trumps GDP growth predictions? American farms are looking at production of 15%-31% less vegetables, 30%-61% less fruit, and 13%-27% less red meat. The price of what remains would skyrocket.

In the construction industry new construction and remodeling would grind to a virtual economic halt with the shortage of labor and a self-sabotaging shortage of concrete products and a spike in concrete prices thanks to a gargantuan “Wall” project we really don’t need.

Residential investment which includes construction of new single-family and multifamily structures, residential remodeling, production of manufactured homes, and brokers’ fees makes up roughly 3-5% of GDP and consumption spending on housing services which includes gross rents and utilities paid by renters, as well as owners’ imputed rents and utility payments account for roughly 12-13% of GDP. A stagnent housing industry would have catastrophic effects on the GDP.

Yeah Trump is a business expert alright, an expert at driving anything under his control into bankruptcy.

The Man Who Shed Light On Why College Keeps Getting More Expensive : NPR Ed : NPR

…However, Bowen and Baumol pointed out that there were certain special areas of the economy where those two forces just didn’t seem to apply. In their book, they used the example of a string quartet.


You can’t increase the “productivity” of a string quartet by playing Mozart at a higher tempo, the way you can speed up an assembly line.


You can’t increase the “efficiency” of a string quartet by cutting the cello player and replacing her with a prerecorded track.


And, you can’t take advantage of lower wages for classical musicians in China, not if you want a live concert at Carnegie Hall.


In short, the authors argued, the cost of direct services provided by highly skilled workers is always going to rise faster than the general rate of inflation.

The Man Who Shed Light On Why College Keeps Getting More Expensive

Enlarge this image William Bowen, a scholar and former president of Princeton University, died last week. He is associated with one of the key explanations for just why a college degree keeps getting more and more and more expensive. Bowen, who was President of The Andrew W.

Jill Stein’s Ideology Says One Thing—Her Investment Portfolio Says Another – The Daily Beast

Jill Stein’s Ideology Says One Thing-Her Investment Portfolio Says Another

Say One Thing, Do Another Green Party Presidential Nominee Jill Stein has largely based her campaign on her uncompromising positions on the environment, opposition to big banks and Wall Street, defense contractors, and the pharmaceutical industry.

The Disinherited: There is a reason that the white American underclass is so out of step with the rest of America… | Frank Schaeffer Pathos

The Disinherited: There is a reason that the white American underclass is so out of step with the rest of America: if you live in a pretend world for long enough you snap

The Disinherited: There is a reason that the white American underclass is so out of step with the rest of America: if you live in a pretend world for long enough you snap

The UVA-IASC survey highlighted the political and cultural gulf between upscale, predominately Democratic whites and downscale, predominately Republican whites. The first group, “the Social Elite” in UVA-IASC’s terminology, is made up of whites with advanced degrees. They are 49 percent Democratic, 16.8 percent Republican.

Obamacare & Jobs

The rightwing meme we hear…

ACA also known as Obamacare MUST be repealed and replaced. It’s a job killing disaster. Remember this when you vote.

The truth…

Ted Cruz’s Pants on Fire claim that health care law is nation’s ‘biggest job-killer’

To a man, the seven candidates on the stage at the Republican debate in Des Moines, Iowa, oppose Obamacare. When Texas Sen. Ted Cruz was asked what he would do for the millions of people who have gained health insurance thanks to the program, Cruz was quick to describe his take on the health care law’s failings.

Obamacare, the secret jobs program

It was the first week of March 2009, and inside the White House, the grand policy aspirations of the young Obama administration were colliding with stark economic reality. On Thursday, March 5, President Barack Obama hosted a summit to kick off his health reform push.

Yet another inconvenient truth for its opponents: Obamacare is not ‘killing jobs’

Within last week’s strong jobs report was yet another good month for the health-care sector, which added 45,000 jobs. The growth of jobs in this sector is a long-term trend, driven in no small part by our aging demographics.

They Called Obamacare A ‘Job-Killer.’ Were They Wrong?

Barring an asteroid or the biggest economic surprise in recent history, Friday’s jobs report will be the 60th straight month that America’s private sector has gained jobs. That’s a new record – but another milestone this month arguably looms larger. March marks five years since the Affordable Care Act was passed …

Fact Check: Part-time workers at Home Depot and Trader Joe’s harmed by Obamacare

The Assertion Part time workers at companies such as Home Depot and Trader Joe’s are being harmed because Obamacare is forcing their employers to drop health insurance coverage and force employees to purchase insurance on the exchanges.

Are employers dumping health benefits because of Obamacare?

Myth: Employers are dumping health benefits because of Obamacare. Reality: It’s true that Obamacare is raising costs on employers. And some are either passing those increased tabs to workers or are cutting back on benefits to keep costs under control.

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