Weekend Update 10-20-2012

Posted: October 20th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Weekend Update | Comments Off on Weekend Update 10-20-2012

I was struck by one thing about Krugman’s post on reasons his perspective on an issue might change over time — that he had to write it at all. Just in the normal course of life, our views, perspectives, and understandings evolve and change over time in response to experience. In fact, if it didn’t, we would tend to consider that a form of mental illness. At least, that’s how it seems to me.

Death by Ideology. Yes. Romney’s and Ryan’s plan for health care in America involves killing tens of thousands of people a year in order to give tax cuts to a handful of the wealthiest Americans. And these are the people and the agenda for whom “pro-life” Americans are supposed to vote? Seriously?

IBM ignores the law on H1-B visas. No real surprise in the US today. Of course, this is the vision for America of Romney specifically and the GOP in general. Strangely, a lot of people they fully intend to screw will vote for them. Is it a manifestation of Stockholm Syndrome?

Mitt’s “small business start-up” line referencing Bain Capital is so utterly absurd it amazes me that anyone can listen to him spout it with a straight face.

Ah, reminiscent of the days when bosses would take employees from the company town to the polls to vote under direct threat about how to vote. Is there any doubt what sort of America Romney seeks to recreate?

Arthur Brooks created a stir with his claim in 2006 that conservatives were more generous in their giving than liberals. Finally, his assertions and data have been examined to see if they hold up. The results? Not so much. I ran into this post first. But I strongly recommend people read the actual paper. There were a number of other interesting results in it, not least the impact partisanship has on giving. A study like this can’t really examine motives, nor can it determine how much of the “charitable giving” actually benefits those in need. But conservative giving is more likely to go toward religious causes, especially to their own congregation. That sort of giving is more subject to social pressure. (I do find it interesting that Utah was the conservative outlier, which might suggest that the LDS church remains better able to exert that sort of pressure.) More of that giving also falls into the category of “intangible religious benefit” rather than direct aid to those in need. Of course, I wouldn’t be surprised if liberals in the US were more likely to give charitably to the “arts” which also offer “intangible” benefits. Of course, I was also struck by the uniformly low levels of charitable giving as a percentage of income in the US. Jesus was right. Wealth tends to have a negative effect on us.

The Romney jobs plan? When you sort through the lies, Krugman seems to nail it. “To summarize, then, the true Romney plan is to create an economic boom through the sheer power of Mr. Romney’s personal awesomeness.

 


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