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The food experts opine:

But there is something the president can do now, on his own, to break that deadlock, much as he has done with climate change. In the next State of the Union address, he should announce an executive order establishing a national policy for food, health and well-being. By officially acknowledging the problem and by setting forth a few simple principles on which most Americans agree, the introduction of such a policy would create momentum for reform. By elevating food and farming to a matter of public concern rather than a parochial interest, the president can make it much more difficult for the interests of agribusiness to prevail over those of public and environmental health.

I am sorry for being dogmatic. We don’t need any national food policy aside from stopping any and all intervention in food markets. I am not interested in debating this. I am not willing to debate this. I will begin and end any comment about national food policy with the following portraits:

The Ukrainian Holodomor, national food policy at its “best”

Mao’s Great Leap Forward

Or how about this one … if they only had a plan none of it would have happened.

Of course, we’re smart and rich and better than all of those people, so nothing at all would happen here.

Our family purchased some tea on Wednesday night:

All the boxes1

 

All the boxes2

 

All the boxes3

 

Can someone remind me again why we need to mandate GMO labeling?

For those interested, that B logo stands for a Certified B Corporation (again, I don’t know how we’d ever survive without government entities certifying corporations …). Here is the CCOF certification, again, how would consumers EVER know what is and is not organic if the government didn’t tell us?

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Once again, let’s line up along our ideological preferences and use those to masquerade as real economics. Those who are in favor of net neutrality may seem to be doing so because the term “neutrality” seems to indicate “fairness” or even “correct.” Of course, the entire point of any economic system is to treat different users differently. I get paid a hell of a lot less than my colleagues that are actually real economists. In the name of “workplace neutrality” should the U of R be forced to provide “equal access to the payroll” to both me and they? What about people that play a lot of golf? Is it fair to charge all golfers the same price to play golf? If you are a private club, perhaps, but that is your decision with your money. Of course, many private clubs which are run not on a membership basis actually make users pay per round they play – so if you play 8 rounds a week you are going to pay 8 times more than the guy that plays 2 rounds per year. Makes sense, no? There must be a way for heavy users (“content providers”) to pay the costs that they impose on the resource and there also must be an incentive for “platform providers” to continue to keep the course in good shape and to innovate in ways to make the game more accessible and enjoyable.

The absolute flouting of any reasonable resemblance of good economics in this “debate” is appalling. What makes it most appalling is that the entities that are most in favor of imposing net neutrality rules, the government and its regulators and supporters, have absolutely no problem at all with net non-neutrality when it comes to the resources they command. Remember all of the kerfuffle about the “you didn’t build that?” Well really the entire defense of the President and his fawning followers is that, “well, he didn’t really mean that they didn’t build it, but really they take advantage of more government infrastructure and military protection than the average Joe and so therefore they should have to pay more.” In other words, the President himself doesn’t believe in some theoretical “net neutrality” rule when it comes to resources he is in command of.

Or better yet, I have experience with another blatant illustration of how the planocracy feels about net neutrality. In this case, I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves. Name calling should probably commence now.

Difference

 

Select

 

 

Car

 

 

Truck

Only in …

In reading a bit about urban growth and congestion from drivers I’ve come across an argument made by the planocracy against the expansion of roads.

The argument?

That it makes little sense to build more roads because of the “problem” of induced demand. In other words, only in the mind of a planner is it a problem when more people get to take advantage of valuable resources. Even if building roads does not end up reducing congestion … it sure does help more people use roads at all. But now that is a bad thing.

Let’s apply that to some other ideas of the planocracy: there is no reason to expand ObamaCare because people might actually use it. There is no reason to declare an area a National Park because people might actually visit. Oh the fun games we could play!

In today’s news trumpeting the “big” US-China carbon deal:

This is, in my view, the most important bilateral climate announcement ever,” said David Sandalow, a former top environmental official at the White House and the Energy Department.

The MOST IMPORTANT? Wow. Consider the other things we learn from the piece:

Yet it wasn’t clear how either the U.S. or China would meet their goals, nor whether China’s growing emissions until 2030 would negate any reductions in the U.S.

If this is what qualifies as newsworthy and important, I’d really love to see what would qualify as unimportant. Here’s more:

“This is a major milestone in the U.S.-China relationship,” Obama said, with Xi at his side. “It shows what’s possible when we work together on an urgent global challenge.”

major milestone? Sort of kind of maybe agreeing to a non-binding non-target two decades out. Sure.

By the way, the “science” is pretty clear that the US would be cutting carbon emissions totally irrespective of what the political class tried to do about it. And when that reduction happens, we’re going to have to endure a mind-numbing Presidential campaign in 2036 that beats on the tired meme that “together we can” reduce carbon emissions and therefore do a whole host of other things … together.

Finally, this was also in the piece:

the United States and China is putting the world’s two worst polluters

I would challenge the author, and readers, to actually define what pollution is.

AND IN OTHER NEWS TODAY:

The Republicans face a choice. Do not run black candidates and let it be obviously clear that they are racist white elites. Or … they can choose to run black candidates and be a little bit more covert about them being racist white elites (i.e. the only reason they supposedly run black candidates is to provide cover for white elites). That’s just dandy. No comments here, we’re not permitted to provide opinions as members of the non-oppressed class here.  Here is my favorite passage:

As the Republican Party contemplates their approach to the 2016 presidential election, the first black, female Mormon in the House has captured their attention on the national stage. This win serves as a psychological victory for them after launching a political strategy to gain more of the “minority vote” since losing the presidency in 2008 and 2012. This pattern of using blacks to further white interests was foundational in the emergence of American society and has been carried forth with each proceeding generation, whether blacks are used physically or, in this case, symbolically. In the end, however, her new role as a freshman GOP congresswoman serves more as window dressing for the red states and is unlikely to result in a shift of more blacks to a party that continues to relegate them to the borders of society. Instead, her accomplishment is quite dangerous for people of color, sending a message that society is post-racial when, in fact, hate crimes, police shootings of innocent and unarmed black men and boys and vitriolic online attacks have dramatically increased since the election of our first black president. Mia Love and her red political ideology do not align with the needs of black Americans, historically disenfranchised people who remain left out and left behind.

That idea is bordering on ____ … oops, I have to shut up. In other news, this guy is not black either.  What a fun world we live in.

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I Was Wrong

It’s good to find evidence that you are wrong about something. As I was driving into work today, I had the experience of getting nastily cut off by a guy in a car with a Connecticut license plate. I know I was right … I was in the right lane on the I-490 just before the Goodman Street exit. The guy in the CT car was tailgaiting the fellow in the left lane to my left, and admittedly the left lane guy was going too slow to be in the left lane. So what does the guy from CT do? He gets behind me, he then goes onto the EXIT ramp for Goodman St, blasts his accelerator and just before hitting the barrier he zips in front of me then over in front of the guy in the left lane.

Aside from the obvious danger here and the fact the the guy broke the law in 1o0 different ways, I said to myself, “pfffft, typical Connecticut driver.” Indeed growing up in NYC I always viewed CT and NJ drivers to be among the most aggressive and, what I thought, dangerous drivers out there.

So, when I got into the office this morning I decided to see how dangerous these “bad drivers” were. I was totally wrong.

The states with the two of the four lowest fatality rates from car accidents are, incredibly, Connecticut and New Jersey (Massachusetts and Minnesota are in the top 4 too. Places like Montana, Louisiana, Arkansas, West Virginia and North Dakota are the most dangerous)! Now, we can come up with all kinds of explanations for it and perhaps rescue my view that I think CT and NJ drivers are off the hook. But, that’s a bit of a stretch. I was wrong.

A few “high”lights:

Before our deployment overseas, Peace Corps vetted us for our idealism and “tolerance,” not for our competence or accomplishments. We all wanted to save the world.

I never witnessed significant leftist outrage over clitoredectomy, child marriage, honor killing, sharia-inspired rape laws, stoning, or acid attacks. Nothing. Zip. Crickets. I’m not saying that that outrage does not exist. I’m saying I never saw it.

Professor X projected a series of photographs onto a large screen. In one, commuters in business suits, carrying briefcases, mounted a flight of stairs. This photo was an act of microaggression. After all, Professor X reminded us, handicapped people can’t climb stairs.

Leftists freely label poor whites as “redneck,” “white trash,” “trailer trash,” and “hillbilly.” At the same time that leftists toss around these racist and classist slurs, they are so sanctimonious they forbid anyone to pronounce the N word when reading Mark Twain aloud. President Bill Clinton’s advisor James Carville succinctly summed up leftist contempt for poor whites in his memorable quote, “Drag a hundred-dollar bill through a trailer park, you never know what you’ll find.”

It astounds me now to reflect on it, but never, in all my years of leftist activism, did I ever hear anyone articulate accurately the position of anyone to our right. In fact, I did not even know those positions when I was a leftist.

Milbank slanders anyone who might attempt analysis of jihad, a force that is currently cited in the murder of innocents — including Muslims — from Nigeria to the Philippines. The leftist strategy of slandering those who speak uncomfortable facts suppresses discourse and has a devastating impact on confrontations with truth in journalism and on college campuses.

My students do know — because they have been taught this — that America is run by all-powerful racists who will never let them win. My students know — because they have been drilled in this — that the only way they can get ahead is to locate and cultivate those few white liberals who will pity them and scatter crumbs on their supplicant, bowed heads and into their outstretched palms. My students have learned to focus on the worst thing that ever happened to them, assume that it happened because America is unjust, and to recite that story, dirge-like, to whomever is in charge, from the welfare board to college professors

In this online forum, suddenly my only contact with others was the words those others typed onto a screen. That limited and focused means of contact revealed something. If you took all the words typed into the forum every day and arranged them according to what part of speech they were, you’d quickly notice that nouns expressing the emotions of anger, aggression, and disgust, and verbs speaking of destruction, punishing, and wreaking vengeance, outnumbered any other class of words. One topic thread was entitled “What do you view as disgusting about modern America?” The thread was begun in 2002. Almost eight thousand posts later, the thread was still going strong in June, 2014. Those posting messages in this left-wing forumpublicly announced that they did what they did every day, from voting to attending a rally to planning a life, because they wanted to destroy something, and because they hated someone, rather than because they wanted to build something, or because they loved someone. You went to an anti-war rally because you hated Bush, not because you loved peace. Thus, when Obama bombed, you didn’t hold any anti-war rally, because you didn’t hate Obama.

Julie,” I said, “You are an active member of the Occupy Movement. You could spend your days teaching children to read, or visiting the elderly in nursing homes, or organizing cleanup crews in a garbage-strewn slum. You don’t. You spend your time protestingand trying to destroy something — capitalism.” “Yes, but I’m very nice about it,” she insisted. “I always protest with a smile.”

Given that the left prides itself on being the liberator of women, homosexuals, and on being “sex positive,” one of the weirder and most obvious aspects of left-wing hate is how often, and how virulently, it is expressed in terms that are misogynist, homophobic, and in the distinctive anti-sex voice of a sexually frustrated high-school misfit … Leftists taunt right-wingers as “tea baggers.” The implication is that the target of their slur is either a woman or a gay man being orally penetrated by a man, and is, therefore, inferior, and despicable.

Given the way the world works these days, I can never really believe what I read – these “conversion” stories are just as likely to be planted by trolls to see how giddy the “other side” gets when they stumble upon them, only to be mocked when realizing it was all made up. Of course, being white and male I am not permitted to chime in on any of this, and your mileage may vary with the above. I, of course, have never ever witnessed or heard anything like what you see above. Never.

Each month in the United States, about 4.5 million jobs are created and about 4.5 million jobs are destroyed. Or, to put it another way, the amount of “job churn” in our economy amounts to the creation and destruction of about fifty million jobs per year. For reference, the size of the entire labor force is only about 150 million.

Let’s accept two common arguments:

  1. If we have unfettered domestic capitalism, such as is claimed exists within the United States, over time you will see the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.
  2. If we have unfettered global capitalism, such as that which manifests itself in free trade around the world, you should be worried that the rich countries will lose all of their jobs while the poor countries take advantage of this. In other words we will see the rich get poorer and the poor get richer.

Seeing as there is actually not one iota of difference between domestic and international capitalism (freely exchanging of private property rights), as a political border doesn’t mean anything in economic theory, we end up with the absurd problem of having to argue, at the very same time, that capitalism makes the rich richer and the poor poorer AND that capitalism makes the rich poorer and the poor richer.

Lovely.

Sunday Ponderance

What the technological singularity implies for “how do the millions of people who do not own the machine” manage to eat?

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