Entitlement “Death Spiral” Begins in California

San Bernardino City is being sued by CalPERS (California Public Employee Retirement System) for failing to make a required payment.

The problem, of course, is that the city is bankrupt. (As is Stockton, Vallejo, Mammoth Lakes, and more in the wings…)

This is all going off to court, who will likely decide the City must pay, at which time the city ceases to provide current services and folks pack up and leave…

Mellisa Francis on Fox Business had the story on her show “Money”. Video here:

http://video.foxbusiness.com/v/1995500845001

Further on in the show she referenced an article, that she said was in Forbes, about the 11 States that are now in a “Death Spiral”. I think it’s this one:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/baldwin/2012/11/25/do-you-live-in-a-death-spiral-state/

One was California. They also had New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Illinois, and a few others. One on the list is Hawaii, you know, the State with the model “cover everyone” health plan? The basic metric was a composite of the “Makers vs Takers” ratio (if more Takers than Makers) and the debt rating (too much debt to service drives the rating down).

A small snippet from the article:

It’s easy to see how California got on our list. It has pampered a large army of civil servants while using every imaginable trick to chase private-sector jobs away, the latest being a quixotic scheme to reduce the globe’s atmospheric carbon. A City Journal essay by Victor Davis Hanson notes that the state spends $10 billion a year on entitlements for illegal aliens.

Yes, that’s right. $10 Billion, with a “B”… for folks who are not even citizens nor legal to be here…

The metaphor used that was most of a ‘touchstone’ for me, was just that of “more people in the cart riding than outside pulling it”.

I did find a very good write up of just WHY such ‘death spirals’ are happening, and will continue to happen. I’m going to quote some of it, but please do hit the link… even if for no other reason than the cool bat and moon graphics that I’m not reproducing here ;-)

http://moonbattery.com/?p=20850

Nov
11
2012
Democrat Death Spiral

The objective of liberal politics is to induce the Democrat Death Spiral, a vicious cycle by which miserable economic conditions lead to government dependency and class envy, leading to Democrat electoral victories, leading to higher taxes and crippling regulations, leading to still more miserable economic conditions. Once the Democrat Death Spiral has been initiated, the more damage left-wing bureaucrats inflict on the economy, the more certain they are of reelection.

Detroit entered the Democrat Death Spiral decades ago. As a result of the city’s utter wretchedness, the Democrats who inflicted it receive upwards of 90% of the vote. There is no possibility of Democrats losing control, or of the city ever regaining its lost greatness.

California officially entered the Democrat Death Spiral when it brought back Jerry Brown despite a desperate economic situation that urgently required the state to turn away from Governor Moonbeam’s brand of profligate liberalism. In effect, the state committed suicide out of sheer moonbattery. Its prospects are no better than Detroit’s.
[...]
It is no coincidence that Obama received 98% of the vote in Detroit, America’s worst and most liberal city, the model for our future.
[...]

So looks like I’m in The Land Of Death Spirals… Oh Joy…

Also of interest, this article on what happened in Washington State when they tried an “Obamacare Lite” insurance mandate:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/aroy/2012/03/30/want-to-see-a-health-insurance-death-spiral-visit-washington-state/

Avik Roy, Contributor

Want to See a Health Insurance Death Spiral? Visit Washington State
[...]
As Peter Suderman described in a 2009 op-ed, the impact of these changes on the insurance market was swift. Some premiums increased by as much as 78 percent in the first three years after the law was enacted. Enrollment in the individual health-insurance market dropped by 25 percent. Within four years, no major insurer in the state was offering maternity coverage. More than 30 insurers left the state altogether.
[...]

The Democrats did learn something from that. They have now made it mandatory for you to pay to have a tax extracted from you to pay for it.

Wonder if San Bernardino will be subject to such an extraction?

Will the last one in the State with money please hand it over?

FWIW, putting “death spiral” in with various government names gives interesting results. Including the EU… looks like they have way more obligations than can ever be paid too, and not just in the PIIGS…

It would be VERY interesting to make a list of who is owed all those promises and who is expected to pay them. Near as I can tell, it’s “old folks” vs “young folks”. Which will work fine just up until they decide to stop paying and working for nothing. NINI Anyone? (Neither in Employment nor Education. The term of art in Spain.) With youth unemployment at about 50% in most such Workers Paradise places, it looks to me like they are already ‘checking out’…

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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34 Responses to Entitlement “Death Spiral” Begins in California

  1. Petrossa says:

    They will follow Europe’s example and use the very successful Target2 system.
    Country X pays Country Y with an IOU backed by giving the ECB a claim on it’s National Product.
    No money involved. Whatever could go wrong with that?

  2. crosspatch says:

    Well, looking at how things sit after the 2012 elections compared to the 2008 elections, I don’t think things are as bad as they are being played in the press. Republicans actually gained ground in state elections outside of three states: CA, NY, and IL. Republicans lost a net two Senate seats due to foot-in-mouth disease by two candidates. Things are actually looking better for 2014 than they looked for 2010 mid-term elections.

    California is an interesting case but even so, if you look at the California counties where Obama won by 5 points or less or that Romney won, it is actually quite an impressive list. Redistricting has made it extremely difficult to knock Democrats out of state government. What is going to have to happen is people are going to need to get a belly full of Democrat fiscal policy.

    What I would suggest people do is locate and join their local county or regional GOP committee if they want to get rid of these people starting from the bottom up. The local committees are not supported by the national RNC. Annual dues for my county are $35 a year. Fewer than 1% of people registering to vote actually join their county committee. The county committees are responsible for supporting candidates for county supervisors, city councils, mayors, school boards, planning commissions, etc. We have a lot of little off year elections where turnout is very light and races are often decided by less than 100 votes. We need to get local and eject these socialists from office. Many places in California have local elections this coming March. We need to vote in them.

  3. adolfogiurfa says:

    Did somebody say something about 2012? Gotto revisit the mayan calendar! :-)

  4. adolfogiurfa says:

    @E.M. You are an economist, please give us your formula to fix everything. I am sure it can be fixed from one day to the other.

  5. DirkH says:

    Young spaniards are mostly unemployed because of the worker protection laws, making it next to impossible to fire a worker. “Labor market inefficiencies”, as the political term for it is. Companies therefore do not dare to hire anyone even if they could use some extra hands.

  6. Zeke says:

    Cheif io quotes: “Detroit entered the Democrat Death Spiral decades ago. As a result of the city’s utter wretchedness, the Democrats who inflicted it receive upwards of 90% of the vote. There is no possibility of Democrats losing control, or of the city ever regaining its lost greatness.”

    http://motorcitykings.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/The-Spirit-of-Detroit1.jpg

  7. Steve C says:

    $10 billion a year on entitlements for illegal aliens … wow. Tell you what, slip this alien a few thou per annum and he won’t become illegal. Call it a preventative measure aimed at stopping the situation from deteriorating even further. ;-)

    NINI is interesting, hadn’t heard that one. Here in the UK we call them NEETs: Not in Education, Employment or Training. The two sound depressingly similar.

  8. crosspatch says:

    More ironic is that when the last Republican mayor of Detroit left office, it had the highest standard of living of any city in the US, it now has the lowest of any major metro area.

  9. John Robertson says:

    Slim Pickens in Dr Strangelove comes to mind, ride it down. If your Fed could be restrained to their constitutional limits, then the individual states could implode as an example to us all. With the country being broke, how does California figure the Feds will be able to bail them out?
    Glenn Beck was talking about the victims voting for their abusers a couple of years back.
    Seems to me all levels of govt must be pruned to a level, from which it lacks the power to bribe taxpayers with their own money . But its a shame we are so stupid, guess human nature has cycles and we have cycled into the stupid phase. After poverty, starvation and chaos we will go on to merit, practicality and civility, then to fat lazy and forgetful and then back to foul, stupid and delusional.The vets have it right, lest we forget.

  10. John F. Hultquist says:

    @ 7:28 Zeke links to “The Spirit of Detroit”

    The City seems to be coming apart and downsizing. Good images here:
    http://www.urbanghostsmedia.com/2012/01/last-house-standing-abandoned-homes-punctuate-detroits-cleared-neighbourhoods/

  11. philjourdan says:

    I guess it required the 2012 election to make us aware of democrat death spirals, but it should not. FDR was the one that created it. His presidency was miserable, yet he kept getting re-elected. And he merely implemented policies that made things worse. The only salvation for the US was Hitler’s destruction of the European manufacturing base.

  12. adolfogiurfa says:

    Steve C says:
    29 November 2012 at 8:00 pm
    $10 billion a year on entitlements for illegal aliens … wow

    That is a one sided view; if looking at an accounting sheet it must be considered how much revenue those aliens produced as a result of their labor. (specially in California´s crop fields)

  13. Gary says:

    No better example of a Democrat death spiral than the State of Rhode Island. Democrats in control since 1937 and the State has been at the bottom of economic and business climate lists for decades. Republicans, who usually downplay their party affiliation, lost even more of their few seats in the General Assembly this last election. What makes it a death spiral is that the people who could fix things leave the State for greener pastures and those remaining keep repeating their voting pattern out of fear of change or historic loyalty or an inability to see how they are abused.

  14. James Sexton says:

    I would put the starting point of Cali’s death spiral much earlier than Moonbeam’s reelection.

  15. Zeke says:

    I have not been to Detroit, but a very well-traveled cousin sent me a photo journal of its dilapidated and broken down state, alongside beautiful photos of modern day Hiroshima at night. I can’t remember the wording but it said something to the effect of “40 years of liberal policies – worse than an atomic bomb.”

  16. philjourdan says:

    @james Secton – which re-election?

  17. p.g.sharrow says:

    If I remember correctly, the plunge began with “Moonbeams” daddy Gov.”Pat” Brown that pushed the centralized takeover of California’s governance by Professionals. The first effort was to force the consolidation of local School districts into giant Unified School Districts under professional administrators instead of the superior teachers that had become the principal teacher at the school. A guy named Allan Cranston lead this effort. He was a politician owned by the unions and was very helpful to them in forcing the teachers into the union’s control. Before these guys California was a “Right to Work” state. pg

  18. E.M.Smith says:

    @Adolfo:

    There’s not nearly that much.

    http://www.labormarketinfo.edd.ca.gov/

    Has total labor and non-farm. Subtract them, you get about 2,000,000 farm related. Of those, about 1/2 are “legal” (percent varies by year). So it’s about 1 Million. Yet these folks:

    http://www.labormarketinfo.edd.ca.gov/

    Give total wage based employment at 413,000 in 1997 ( and lower since – folks are mechanizing or leaving the business)

    So those are likely ‘bounds’. One presumes that the first number has some double counting as some folks have more than one place they work and under different names, or includes all the ‘non-wage’ workers – that is, the farm owners and their families.

    Average wage is a bit under $10 /hour. Work is seasonal, so even if you make it 1/2 a year, that’s about 1,000 hours. Call it $10,000 / year. That’s at most $10 Billion (so the “subsidy” via free “goodies” is about the same as total wages paid) or about $4.13 Billion (or about 2.5 x more in “subsidy” than paid in wages).

    Yet even that lower number is likely 2 x as high as the ‘illegals’. As we’ve not reduced it by 1/2 to allow for the percentage of illegal immigrants in the labor pool. So, per the numbers, we ought to take the 413,000 “ag wage earners” and made it 206,000 “illegal wage earners”… That would make the “subsidy” 5 x what is being paid in wages.

    Oh, and do realize that these folks ARE being paid for farm work, so in theory (market pricing theory) their economic contribution is accounted for already in their wages… In a properly functioning market, folks would choose to leave that work (seasonal / low paid) if they were not making enough to ‘live on’ and find other work. That, then, would raise wages until enough folks WERE willing to do the labor. To the extent we use welfare and similar (food stamp payments to subsidize the present life style choices, we are assuring lower wage rates. It also assure we use more manual labor and less mechanization than is optimal for efficient production.

    In short, it’s a really dumb idea both for production and for the laborers. (I’m pretty sure they would rather be driving automated harvesters and doing engine repair than

    picking grapes by hand. BTW, I chose grapes as, thanks to the Farm Workers Union, it rapidly moved to automated picking as they moved wage rates above market parity.)

    Who benefits? Well, government employees who ‘manage’ all the subsidy programs… And the farmers who get below market wages as the equilibrium point. Everyone else pretty much loses. Yes, your produce in the store is a bit cheaper, but your taxes go up by more.

    Another example of what happens in non-subsidized markets is what happened to tomatoes when the Bracero program ended:

    http://migration.ucdavis.edu/rmn/more.php?id=1138_0_5_0

    The May 2006 issue of Western Grower and Shipper reprinted a study on labor-saving mechanization http://www.cis.org/articles/2000/back1200.html ) that distinguished labor aids (sometimes called back-saving devices), labor-saving machines (tree shakers), and automation, such as electronic eyes that replace people in selecting and harvesting crops.

    The starting point for many labor-saving mechanization discussions is the processing tomato harvester, which spread rapidly after the end of the Bracero program in 1964, replacing pickers who put up to 50 pounds of tomatoes in field boxes with machines that cut the entire plant, shook off the tomatoes, and conveyed them past sorters before dumping them in trucks outfitted with 12.5 ton tubs. Harvesting labor needs fell by 90 percent, and production rose from 2.5 million tons a year in the early 1960s to between 10 and 12 million tons a year.

    Labor costs as a share of production costs fell sharply, from 50 to 15 percent. However, processing tomatoes changed from one of several crops on small and diversified farms to the major or only crop on larger and more specialized farms, one result of having farmers make investments in harvesting machines. A suit against the University of California, which developed a uniformly ripening tomato and a version of the machine, slowed UC’s labor-saving mechanization research, as then USDA Secretary Bob Bergland said: “I will not put federal money into any project that reduces the need for farm labor.”

    We also have a wonderful example of how government “thinks”. We must be prevented from improving things for everyone via mechanization if it puts people out of low value work and encourages them to get better work…. Everyone to be a picker in the New Banana Republic…

    I’ve picked peaches and ‘punkins’ (there’s no “p” in the field ;-) and it’s not a pleasant job.

    Oddly, while in high school I was talking to a local guy who was working on a “punkin picker” machine. Don’t know if he ever got it working well. Basically some ‘hooks’ on a belt that pulled vine and all into the bed, where the pumpkin was separated from the vines and loaded into a truck. At the time, there was a ‘one tine fork’ you stuck in the pumpkin and did a lift / throw over your shoulder into the truck. The one tine was so the (large) pumpkin could rotate avoiding off center of mass torque forces on the fork handle. Yes, I was analyzing the physics of it as I was ‘chuckin punkin’ into the truck… It’s what bright kids do when growing up in farm country ;-)
    http://duckduckgo.com/?t=ous&q=automated+pumpkin+harvester

    gave a couple of hits, but don’t know if any of them were him.

    So what OUGHT to happen, in free markets, is wages would rise, automation would increase, more food for everyone at lower prices, while more people moved from “stoop labor” into doing machinery maintenance and operation, engineering, and management / planning. Instead we have the USDA pushing for more folks kept in poverty and as ‘wage slaves’ and on the government dole too.

    BTW, that “move into engineering” is NOT a hypothetical. I’ve worked with several “Hispanic Programmers” locally who were children of immigrants. Some legal, some not. They were a bit surprised to find out we BOTH had worked at ‘pickers’ in the fields as kids… It was only some years after graduating high school that I realized “I AM an immigrant kid too” as my Mom was from England. When I’d point that out to the “Mexican Kids” they would often come to a halt and just look boggled. See, they had stereotyped me into the “White Guy” box…

    We could solve a large part of our immigration problem via some decent farm automation, higher wages, and building some programmer schools in Mexico… ALL while keeping food prices down via that automation.

    BTW, getting an Econ degree from an Ag School (and a name one at that) means a lot of time spend on Ag Economic problems and case studies…

    @James Sexton:

    Yes, the overall “Death Spiral” started a long time ago. I’d put it about the first time we elected Governor Moonbeam. I put the term “entitlement” in front of death spiral to put emphasis on the point that the entitlements have reached the breaking point. Off to court land…

    @PhilJourdan:

    We first elected Jerry Brown back in the ’75-83. We’ve just elected him again in 2011.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jerry_Brown

    @Zeke:

    I’ve seen such a photo-journal. I think from a link someone put here in a prior posting… There was a stellar opera house in profound decay that was heart breaking…

    It really ought to serve as a warning to folks here who think “It can’t happen here”. It can, and will (if things don’t change).

    @Gary:

    Thank you!

    I had an opportunity to get a job at Brown University in the ’80s and the spouse nixed it. I’ve “carried emotional baggage” about that ( as I liked the job and really wanted the New England experience for a few decades…). Knowing that I dodged a decaying process is soothing…

    @John F. Hultquist :

    It would be interesting to see how many ‘recent Texans’ are from Detroit ;-)

    @John Robertson:

    To explain it all, just realize that almost 1/2 of the population is below average intelligence. A different almost 1/2 is below average education. A different (but overlapping) almost 1/2 is below average interest in such things. When you get done adding all that up, the majority of all voters are stupid, uneducated, unaware and uninterested. But about average or above in greed and self interest… The rest is just “applied mathematics”…

    Why Democracy is bad, and fails, and why a Republic works and is stable.

    @Crosspatch:

    Interesting metric…

    @Zeke:

    From a time when Engineers were making the city great?

    @DirkH:

    Any time you introduce artificial costs into a market, you get less of the thing being traded. In labor markets as in all others. For some reason “lawyers and lawmakers” seem to think they can make ALL laws, and forget that the laws of economics are beyond their reach (or their ken…) So we get “feel good / does bad” laws. Like employment laws.

    @Steve C:

    Interesting idea… just ship the money directly to Mexico?… Maybe we could even trade them “green for green”… oh, wait, we already do that ;-)

    Hmmm… So I”m a “NEET NINI”? I like the sound of that ;-)

    @Petrossa:

    Except that I doubt Texas will sign up to pay for Californians to retire on fat checks…

    @Adolfo:

    Unfortunately, it isn’t an economic problem. It is a political one.

    Since ‘fixing it’ would require the political will to actually change things to a more conservative bent, I don’t see that requirement being met. But, IFF it could be met:

    1) The court needs to find that, just like any company, a local government in bankruptcy can repudiate their labor union contracts and fob off their unsustainable pension obligation to the Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation. I think they presently do not pay into that fund, so it might also require that ALL cities then get signed up to the fund… Likely Counties too.

    2) A bunch of cities need to take that route, while the rest use it to cudgel the unions into accepting less lush retirement “goodies”.

    3) In particular, government needs to leave the “defined benefit” plan behind and move to a “defined contribution” plan. i.e IRA / 401k type.

    4) A bunch of municipal bonds need a ‘hair cut’ / default. Yes, that breaks some other things, but makes clear what they are really worth.

    5) We have a legal mandate to balance the State budget”. We need to sue the present office holders for “Breach of contract” and “malpractice” AND win. Force them to live inside the law.

    6) Repeal of the law allowing public employee unions. We didn’t have this problem before that. Letting the politicians get graft wholesale from public employee unions then reward them with lush pensions is the root cause, IMHO.

    7) The voters need to vote out any politician that does NOT cut costs, cut labor costs in particular, and supports public employee unions in particular. Also any politician who does NOT balance the budget with fully funded pension costs needs to be pitched.

    I think that would cover most of it. Cutting tax rates dramatically and pitching a load of regulatory burden would also get the economy in general going much better (so more tax revenues at lower rates); but that’s more of a ‘generally ought to be done’ than a specific fix. Just trying to do that without fixing the labor cost issues will just fail.

    Unfortunately, as all of that pretty much depends on the voters controlling the politicians and the politicians suddenly becoming moral and acting for the good of the people rather than in their own self-interest. So don’t hold your breath…

    What will happen instead is that a stupid voter base will continue to vote more money for “Education for the children, and Libraries and Police” and elect politicians that promise fluffy kittens and puppies for everyone, while jacking up costs and wages and benefits for public employee unions that give them money to do it. That will continue until collapse.

    We’ve got a long history of this process, starting back with the Ancient Greeks who pointed out that Democracy fails in just this kind of way.

    We used to have a certain ‘discipline’ at the national level that prevented more than a few States at a time from taking this road. As of the last election, that has changed. We’re not married to a process that will continue with “Finding other peoples money to spend” until it is ALL spent. Either by a direct taking, or more likely via a simple ‘inflate it away’ and load up the Credit Card in their name. So expect to see the “Red States” being bled and obligated to bail out the “Blue States” until they, too, are broken.

    But that will take a few more election cycles, so plenty more “kick the can” to come…

    What? You thought Obama would let California fail? Nah… He’ll suck money out of Texas to prop them up…

    (The court will find the city must pay the pensions. The City will get some kind of ‘deal’ from the State or Feds. The State will find some way to ‘third party’ the costs onto others. More folks with means will move to Nevada and Texas as things here continue to “Spiral to Detroit”… Likely will take about a decade, IMHO.)

    But at least now we’re past the “watchful waiting” stage and into the “death spiral” … looking around for that Hospice Nurse to deliver the Morphine and asking about the nice man with the life support machine… (and ignoring who’s going to pay the bill when we’re gone…)

  19. DirkH says:

    philjourdan says:
    30 November 2012 at 12:48 pm
    ” The only salvation for the US was Hitler’s destruction of the European manufacturing base.”

    Very true. And several mass migrations of German/European technical intelligence to the US (escape from the NS regime in the early years, Operation Paperclip later, the magnet of a thriving US industry later).

  20. philjourdan says:

    @E.M. – He was “elected” in 75. He was “re-elected” in 79. I was gone by then (thank god). He was then “re-elected” again in 2011.

    My comment was a tongue in cheek reference to when the death spiral started. 79 is closer to the truth. Usually one does not see termite damage until it is very extensive.

  21. E.M.Smith says:

    @P.G. Sharrow:

    Ooooh… Good catch… Yes, thinking about it, I think I had the start at “the wrong Brown”.

    IIRC, it was under “Daddy Brown” that we went to the Senate being directly elected instead of appointed by the Counties too….

    I think I was measuring more from “when symptoms started showing up” instead of from “when the precursor behaviours were done”…

    So add to my “fix it” list above:

    8) Go back to the Counties appointing senators in California and States appointing them at the Fed level as was the original method.

    9) Eliminate the teachers union / go to right to work; and eliminate the “Unified” school admin structure (then wait a decade…)

  22. p.g.sharrow says:

    @EMSmith; I don’t think you need to get rid of unions. But you definitely need to get rid of the Union shop concept. The Right to work is as important as the right to vote in secret ballot. The unions hate both concepts. I know about them, One of my grandfathers was a union enforcer, you know the guy with the pickax handle that made sure the workers toed the union line. Most unions will wither if the bosses can’t use force or government to extort the workers. pg

  23. philjourdan says:

    @p.g. – You hit the problem squarely between the eyes. Unions are not the problem. Lack of freedom is the problem.

  24. p.g.sharrow says:

    @EMSmith ; you also need to get rid of gerrymandering to make safe districts. The decadial redistricting is to equalize population in assembly districts not to make safe districts for incumbents. Maybe put an end to voter registration by party, an idea that needs more thought as to good and bad possibilities. pg

  25. adolfogiurfa says:

    Saint Peter don´t you call me, cause I owe my soul to the company store…” That was in the “good all days”, now it´s 2012 and that Mayans thing, think we just get some popcorn and wait.
    :-)

  26. John Robertson says:

    The recent cycles seem to be war, boom,bubble,crash,depression & back to war.
    Is the cycle just our nature.
    In tough times, we reward practical behaviour.
    In rich times we reward idiotic behaviour.
    After collapse people act smarter as a group, until the memories of bad times fade.
    This seems to be the base, of our cycles of economic russian roulette.

  27. p.g.sharrow says:

    @John Robertson; I’m not sure that the behavior of people changes much. At least over the 55years that I have been paying attention. But the behavior of politicians and especially the behavior of bureaucrats towards citizens has change greatly, from being public servants to being public directors. The better you pay them, the more elite they behave. In really bad times they lose their jobs and benefits just like everyone else also the ones that keep their jobs have their purchasing power greatly reduced by inflation and claw backs. Those that are left are glad to have a job and try to earn their keep by helping the citizens instead of impeding them. pg

  28. Zeke says:

    EMSmith says: “From a time when Engineers were making the city great?”

    Of course, there is more to life than science, and it has its limitations for solving problems and understanding the universe around us, but I like that interpretation of the sculpture. (:

  29. John Robertson says:

    @p.g.sparrow; Thats part of it, we acted smarter by limiting numbers & power of the regulating class , plus we were quick to call a stop to attempts to waste our wealth on dumb stuff..
    Makes you wonder how we allowed political correctness to gain a foothold. PC = lying, in the language of my youth.
    Maybe what changes, is we get fed up calling BS for what it is, as the number of well intentioned idiots grows.
    I go to, “what we are going to do about CC”, local govt meeting up here and they are awash in good intentions & idiocy, I listen and snicker quietly. Then ask for the science, but always get arm waving and precautionary principle logic.
    But I cannot argue with most of these people, they are believers, with full illogic,circular reasoning and I am evil as I challenge the faith. And they, being good&right, don’t need to argue with evil people.
    Just seems to me stupid ideas take hold faster, the farther we are in time, from poverty.I grew up poor, this waste and lunacy sickens me. If I was not going to go down with the rest of society I would actively help these clowns over the edge,the petition to ban water would get near unanimous signatures from that crowd.
    we are so lucky ma nature has a sense of humour.Also that the regulations did not get organized before the cooling began, otherwise we would be told , see how effective the carbon taxes are.

  30. p.g.sharrow says:

    @JohnRobertson; But they were successful. there has been no warming for 15 years and now it is cooling. ;-)
    I know what you mean we have a business in Chico and we have to deal with highly educated people that have been educated way beyond their intelligence. They have to spout their talking points and refuse to listen to the most basic reason and science. Kind of like dealing with born again Christians. They know their Bible and don’t confuse them with the facts.
    Now the Obamanation is their savior that will lead them to the promised land. Fools, he is the Great Deceiver, the man with the Golden Tongue that will lead the greater part of the world astray. Good thing his time is nearly over. Now he will rule by decree and not by consent and show his true face. Pravda just said Barack Obama is a communist and is deliberately destroying America. When he was young he was chosen by certain members of the Muslim Brotherhood for this task. But just like Hitler, he must fulfill his destiny, as must we. Next will be the “Wise old man” that will set the world of man on a new path of enlightened rule. Interesting in that this man is “hidden for his safety”. Too many Greedy Evil Bastards that want to take control of the next era. “The net that covers the world” is the key to the new world that is being created. GEBs want to use the internet for their purposes but it is a double edged sword best wielded by the many. WUWT and others are killing the paid minions of the GEBs.
    Maybe “the wise old man” is actually wise old men that labor in obscurity on the internet. ;-)
    I have high hopes for our Mr Smith’s contribution. pg

  31. Mark Miller says:

    The tenor of these comments brought to mind this very well done video by Steven Crowder on Detroit. He predicted the “death spiral” for the country 3 years ago, saying that the promises made by Obama are eerily similar to the promises made by Detroit’s politicians over the last 50 years. Look how that turned out. The punch line comes at the end, where Crowder says, “This is very well what America could look like, in a very short amount of time.”

  32. John Robertson says:

    Crowder nails it, the proverb/folk saying? The road to hell is paved with good intentions.
    I support a tax on do-gooders, at 150% of their gross income.
    Is Detroit a casestudy in driving out the productive and rewarding the clueless?

  33. GAI says:

    This is a comment on Ramesses The Red

    You mentioned:
    ” FWIW, you can see some of this same thing today in the Saudi and Jordanian Royals. They picked up some European “eye candy” and now it’s showing in some of the princes… Queen Noor of Jordan was American born and with a dark blond look.”

    She was a cousin. Her Dad came to the USA from Lebanon with my grandfather. Granddad, although he was a Lebanese Druze, had a red beard.

  34. gold price says:

    Last week, after Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius claimed the private insurance market was in a “ death spiral ” long before ObamaCare came along, I pointed out that ObamaCare itself is the paramount modern example of a high-speed death spiral. Whatever one might say about the structural deficiencies of private health insurance – which are, in no small part, due to government interference – it’s taken decades for them to reach their current state. ObamaCare, by contrast, began falling apart the minute it passed. Literally billions of dollars have been dropping from its leprous bulk with every passing month.

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