Why Thom is still wrong on the economy.

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I started an earlier thread illuminating the vulnerability of big government to corruption from political interests and low and behold the 'Solyndragate' rears its ugly head.

When will the Left learn that you can't entrust a central bureaucracy with management of trillions of dollars and not attract corruption on a grand scale that ultimately destroys societal wealth and living standards.

Yet, like Einstein stated, insanity is doing the same thing over and over and over and expecting different results. The Left continues to live by the same tired old disproven mantra that 'our party will do a better job of managing government'

As a Tea Party member, I understand that it doesn't matter what party is in power -- corruption and waste gravitate to the money. And the bigger the government, the more tax and regulatory power it has, the more flies it attracts.

Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely

truth to power's picture
truth to power
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Comments

Yes, you started an earlier thread which I and many others are waiting for your answers.

Your single offer of evidence seems to be a government sponsored project in the creation of solar panels, and the fact that this company went out of business shows how corrupt government was in the backing of solar energy.

You will be happy to learn the government invented solar cells to get it's spaceship to the moon.

And it succeeded.

China, of course, is heavily subsidizing the production of solar cells and in the process has nearly destroyed our solar cell industry.

That is pretty much the story of our entire economy. We used to be the number exporter of manufactured goods in the world before Reagan. Then, we fully embraced free trade, financial and other deregulation. We are not the biggest importer of manufactured goods and exporter or raw materials.

If you would actually listen to Tom, you already would know this.

Dr. Econ's picture
Dr. Econ
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

There are two choices as to where the fruits of your labor go. A small portion of your "fruit" goes to the government for the purposes of welfare, defense, infrastructure, health concerns, etc. of your fellow Americans and the larger portion of your fruit goes to your employer. What is left over goes into your pocket. There will always be corruption in government and in business. Anyone who believes that there is more corruption in government than in business is crazy.

The money that government takes from it's citizens is peanuts compared to the money that is hoarded by their employers. That is why the current protests are at the door of wall street and not at the door of the white house. Keep blaming all of this countries problems on the government because that's exactly what big business wants you to keep focused on. The tea party is a good example of how well it's working.

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Bush_Wacker
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You will be happy to learn the government invented solar cells to get it's spaceship to the moon.

And it succeeded-- dr econ

This is going to be easy.

Where did the government get the money or capital to research solar cells ?

What was the government's 'net profit' from this enterprise?

truth to power's picture
truth to power
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We all profited. In fact, many poor People in Africa might call it a miracle.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/25/science/earth/25fossil.html

Amen to big government!

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Laborisgood
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@ Laborisgood,

If you claim that government spending is good.

How do you determine if it is cost effective ?

What is your metric for determining that the money allocated by politicians and their cronies in the private and public sector is the best use of capital against all other uses ?

How do you know that the resources spent by government on political causes that primarily benefit a politician's re-election chances or ideological preferences would not have been better utlilized satisfying some other want or need ?

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truth to power
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There are two choices as to where the fruits of your labor go. A small portion of your "fruit" goes to the government for the purposes of welfare, defense, infrastructure, health concerns, etc. --bush whacker

No, total government spending as a percentage of GDP is over 35%! Hardly a 'small portion' -- government polticians use this largesse to buy and maintain power and privledge by dispensing taxpayer money to potential campaign contributors and large constituencies.

Government uses social causes as an excuse to plunder money from the productive private sector. In reality, government dispense precious little resources to legitimate causes which continue to go lacking while political constituencies and lucrative campaign contributors get the gravy.

In sum, government is primarily in business to secure its own self-interests, not societal welfare.

There will always be corruption in government and in business -- bush whacker.

Big difference. When business engages in corrupt and inefficient practices, it goes bankrupt (unless bailed out by government ).

In contrast, when the government monopoly engages in corruption and inefficiences it is perpetual.

The money that government takes from it's citizens is peanuts compared to the money that is hoarded by their employers. -- bushwhacker

Produce your source.

And what business is it of yours what a private citizen does with his/her money?

Nonetheless, government takes money by coercive means whereas private companies (in a free market deviod of preferential regulations and subsidies) earn their money by voluntary competitive means.

That is why the current protests are at the door of wall street and not at the door of the white house. -- bush whacker

The protesters are too stupid to realize that government and wall street form a duopoly that benefits each other at the expense of Main Street. Moreover, most of the protesters are mad at Wall Street for taking political plunder that these parasites think they deserve.

Keep blaming all of this countries problems on the government because that's exactly what big business wants you to keep focused on. The tea party is a good example of how well it's working.-- bush whacker

Again, 'big business' is not necessarily a bad thing, particularly when it generates sustainable jobs, tax revenue, goods and services at a fair price.

Big business is a problem when it forms an unholy alliance with government to insulate itself from a competitive marketplace in order to maintain marketshare with bailouts, preferential tax and regulatory policy.

Distribingly, the drones protesting against big business are clueless to the fact that these same big businesses gave generously to Obama in the last election. Indeed, AIG, BP, and most of the financial firms on Wall Street gave most of their political largesse to Obama and the Democrat party machine.

Campaign contributions to Barack Obama: $137,950 (Fannie Mae) $68,750 (Freddie Mac) $370,524 (Lehman Bros.) $75,899 (AIG) and $570,614 (Bear Stearns)

And here is a story from the left-leaning Politico that acknowledges Obama benefit from BP oil political largesse more than any other candidate.

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truth to power
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My source is myself. I work for company Z. I am in the service business. I produced 200K in 2010. Nobody other than myself produced every penny of that income. I know down to the penny every cost associated with that income. I am sent a detailed report every month that shows me the total cost of my vehicle expenses, my chemical expenses, and other expenses to the penny. Out of the 200K that my labor produced I was paid 35K. The total expenses involved with the income came to 25K. That is a total of 60K in costs to the company. Add in the misc. payroll costs that my employer has to pay which includes supposedly half of my health insurance costs and it comes to less than 80K that my company has invested in the entire thing.

Out of the 35K that I was payed, I payed in about 2K in income taxes after deductibles and I payed in 6K for my health insurance. My employer made over 120K off of my labor without having to lift a finger. The republicans want me to be outraged over how much I have to pay in taxes on my income but will be the first ones in line to congratulate my employer on the superb use of capitalism.

My employer could pay all of my health insurance premiums, and cover my income taxes and give me a better rate of pay and STILL be way ahead of the game but nobody ever thinks in those terms, they only talk about what amount you pay in taxes.

I agree that big business is not neccesarily a bad thing but all too often greed becomes more important than anything else. I believe that's what the OWS is really all about even though it is showcased in so many different forms.

If our employers were more in touch with their employees and see them as fellow persons and not just a number on a screen then I don't think things would be nearly as bad as they are. I will always gladly pay my fair share of income taxes without demonizing the government for trying to help those who need it the most. I am more interested in the amount of money that my employer keeps in order to pad his portfolio and build that much need 3rd vacation home. That is where the true waste in our economy lies.

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Govt subsidies make sense for new fledgling industries like solar and wind. Read this article from 2.5 years ago. It was right, China whose solar subsidies dwarfs US solar subsidies, now owns the solar market and has put American solar co's like Solyndra out of business.----- ===========China offers big solar subsidy, shares up

(Reuters) - China has launched an unprecedented and long-awaited plan to offer subsidies for utility-scale solar power projects, sparking a rally in shares of Chinese solar panel makers on Tuesday.

Shares of top Chinese panel maker Suntech Power Holdings Co Ltd (STP.N) soared 10 percent, Yingli Green Energy Holding Co Ltd (YGE.N) climbed 14 percent, Trina Solar Ltd (TSL.N) rose 10 percent and JA Solar Holdings Co Ltd (JASO.O) was trading 7 percent higher.

Beijing's bid to boost the solar energy sector could draw more than $10 billion in private funding for projects and put China on track to become a leading market for solar equipment in the next three years. [ID:nHKG193]

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Quote truth to power:

@ Laborisgood,

If you claim that government spending is good.

How do you determine if it is cost effective ?

What is your metric for determining that the money allocated by politicians and their cronies in the private and public sector is the best use of capital against all other uses ?

How do you know that the resources spent by government on political causes that primarily benefit a politician's re-election chances or ideological preferences would not have been better utlilized satisfying some other want or need ?

Not all government spending is good. Contrary to the line of reasoning you and the 2 wings of our corporate party espouse, the government is NOT a business and shouldn't be viewed as such. Terms like cost efficient take on an entirely different meaning when you weigh the common good against money. Furthermore, how many businesses do you know that are able to print money? Our country is so fucked right now up due to the business model mentality that we have been incorrectly using for far too long. We have been generating tons of "wealth" as businesses are supposed to do but at the expense of the common good. How could that be?

I believe we may have some agreement on the financial pollution of our politics, but it to is merely another version of the same story of big business and the "business" of politicians to enrich themselves at the expense of the common good. Government can be a force of good and ours needs to be overhauled to bring back common good as it's primary concern as opposed to generating wealth for the precious few.

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Laborisgood
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What he said. ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Bush_Wacker's picture
Bush_Wacker
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Quote truth to power:

I started an earlier thread illuminating the vulnerability of big government to corruption from political interests and low and behold the 'Solyndragate' rears its ugly head.

When will the Left learn that you can't entrust a central bureaucracy with management of trillions of dollars and not attract corruption on a grand scale that ultimately destroys societal wealth and living standards.

Yet, like Einstein stated, insanity is doing the same thing over and over and over and expecting different results. The Left continues to live by the same tired old disproven mantra that 'our party will do a better job of managing government'

As a Tea Party member, I understand that it doesn't matter what party is in power -- corruption and waste gravitate to the money. And the bigger the government, the more tax and regulatory power it has, the more flies it attracts.

Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely

Too bad you dont realize that you are being manipulated by the Big Oil Republicans in using Solyndra as an example of govt spending waste. .

Solyndra only got $500 million in govt subsidies as a last ditch effort to save it from the collapse in solar panel prices from China which subsidizes their solar co's up to $7 BILLION EACH!. But its too late now, they have won the solar power race thanks to the Big Oil subsidized Republican party foot-dragging.

WHy dosnt the Big oil/Republicans/Fox media ever use the example of the $78 billion we are going to give to Big Oil co's in the next few years? And they are among the most profitable companies on the planet!. http://www.grist.org/energy-policy/2011-07-29-we-can-save-78-billion-by-ending-oil-and-gas-subsidies

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So, since the one example that government can make mistakes we have to emasculate govt, we have hundreds of examples of corporations like Enron, and WorldComm doing corrupt, evil, dastardly acts, we can outlaw corporations too, and make all US business operate as sole proprietors or partnerships, and the resulting personal criminal responsibility for their actions?

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Quote Bush_Wacker:That is why the current protests are at the door of wall street and not at the door of the white house. Keep blaming all of this countries problems on the government because that's exactly what big business wants you to keep focused on.

Except that I'm pretty sure Goldman Sachs is headquartered at the White House.

It's pretty tough to draw much distinction between government and corporations. That's the nature of plutocracy, which the US has always been.

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Garrett78
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Sep. 3, 2010 9:20 am

I'm soooooooo tired of the BIG GOVERNMENT whine.

Our government ain't big enough! Bigger gov't need not be a more costly gov't. If our already elected officials whose pay is already allotted for their terms would just stand up BIG & TALL against the banksters and corporations, they would be able increase the "profits" necessary for improving the common good. What is the financial cost to cast a vote in congress? What is the financial cost of enforcing anti-trust and labor laws that are already on the books? The argument against big gov't is always that we're broke and can't affford it. We can't afford to keep such a weak and toothless gov't any longer.

Our government is way too small. I want a much BIGGER, BADDER ASS KICKING GOVERNMENT!!!

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@ bushwhacker

Your labor is worth 200k because your employer adds value to that labor. Otherwise, you should contract out your skill set independently.

Otherwise your subjective and selective accounting doesn't add up when juxtapose economic reality.

Hence, take your 200k skill set with the 25k in total expenses and pocket the additional 175k yourself.

Which begs the question -- if you are so valuable to the marketplace, why do you have to surrender control of your talent to a greedy employer?

The fact of the matter is that you overrate your talents and underrate the contributions of your employer without which you probably wouldnt have a job otherwise you should risk your own money and talents with your 'society owes me a living' rhetoric.

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truth to power
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Govt subsidies make sense for new fledgling industries like solar and wind.-- erik300

That is a demonstrably failed excuse to (1) plunder productive enterprises that are already making money and generating tax revenue without consuming it and (2) creating a pool of plunder that self-interested politicians use to cultivate votes and campaign contributions.

Private venture capital already funds fledgling industries. the difference is that private capital does so (1) without a dime of risk to the taxpayer, (2) is committed by investors risking their own money, hence they exercise far greater due diligence, and (3) they do so for economic profit based on economic reality rather than political power.

And it is ridiculous to cite China as an example to follow when it has entire cities that are empty due to mismanaged capital. In addition, the nation is rife with corruption, pollution, waste and civil unrest due to extreme disparity in income that is driven by political patronage (in the name of fledgling industries).

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truth to power
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So, since the one example that government can make mistakes we have to emasculate govt, we have hundreds of examples of corporations like Enron, and WorldComm doing corrupt, evil, dastardly acts, we can outlaw corporations too, and make all US business operate as sole proprietors or partnerships, and the resulting personal criminal responsibility for their actions?-- phaedrus76

and what happened to Enron and WorldComm or any other corporation or private entity that are corrupt, wasteful and inefficient ?

Let me answer that for you --- they went bankrupt.

In contrast, government which has indebted the nation to the tune of at least 80% of GDP and tens of trillions in unfunded debt due to mismanaged entitlement regimes can never be fired or bankrupt.

The political elite and their cronies in the private and public sector continually rob Main Street without remorse or reservation.

Thom rails against corporate monopolies when he is clueless to the most corrupt, wasteful, and inefficient monopoly known to man -- the US government !!

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Quote truth to power:
Govt subsidies make sense for new fledgling industries like solar and wind.-- erik300

That is a demonstrably failed excuse to (1) plunder productive enterprises that are already making money and generating tax revenue without consuming it and (2) creating a pool of plunder that self-interested politicians use to cultivate votes and campaign contributions.

Private venture capital already funds fledgling industries. the difference is that private capital does so (1) without a dime of risk to the taxpayer, (2) is committed by investors risking their own money, hence they exercise far greater due diligence, and (3) they do so for economic profit based on economic reality rather than political power.

And it is ridiculous to cite China as an example to follow when it has entire cities that are empty due to mismanaged capital. In addition, the nation is rife with corruption, pollution, waste and civil unrest due to extreme disparity in income that is driven by political patronage (in the name of fledgling industries).

I guess you didnt even read the article or do you have comprehension problems?

It said that the Chinese solar stocks SOARED on the market after it was announced that China would heavily subsidize them. That means that investors became confident these Chinese solar stocks would do well since China was going to help them get off the ground! I was invested in a China solar stock for a few years ago. I wish I was still!

Here's the article from July 2009: (Reuters) - China has launched an unprecedented and long-awaited plan to offer subsidies for utility-scale solar power projects, sparking a rally in shares of Chinese solar panel makers on Tuesday.

Shares of top Chinese panel maker Suntech Power Holdings Co Ltd (STP.N) soared 10 percent, Yingli Green Energy Holding Co Ltd (YGE.N) climbed 14 percent, Trina Solar Ltd (TSL.N) rose 10 percent and JA Solar Holdings Co Ltd (JASO.O) was trading 7 percent higher.

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Oh my God... He is still here.

So, he got his ass spanked so bad in that last thread to the point where he could no longer defend his idiocy, he now decides the best thing to do is start a clean thread and rehash all of his bullshit talking points which we have already revealed to be some of the stupidest and most unsupported crap on the face of the Earth.

Everyone enjoy your poop sandwhich. I for one am not going to swallow this again.

ah2
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Dec. 13, 2010 10:00 pm
Not all government spending is good. Contrary to the line of reasoning you and the 2 wings of our corporate party espouse, the government is NOT a business and shouldn't be viewed as such. Terms like cost efficient take on an entirely different meaning when you weigh the common good against money.--laborisgood

yes, but your missing a very important point --- Reality!

Terms like 'cost efficient' take on a meaning called --- economic reality that whether you like it or not must be adhered to or we end up like North Korea, Cuba, USSR, et al.

Our country is so fucked right now up due to the business model mentality that we have been incorrectly using for far too long. We have been generating tons of "wealth" as businesses are supposed to do but at the expense of the common good. How could that be?--laborisgood

I cant believe that you are attacking wealth as counter to the common good ?!

How do you suppose scarce resources are allocated to increase societal living standards in the absence of wealth creation ?

I believe we may have some agreement on the financial pollution of our politics, but it to is merely another version of the same story of big business and the "business" of politicians to enrich themselves at the expense of the common good.--laborisgood

you fundamentally do not understand the nature of free markets and their efficacy at creating wealth and increasing societal productivity and living standards.

For example, 'greedy' businessmen 'enriching' themselves is not necessarily bad for society or the common good, if they do so by selling goods and services (1) heretofore denied to the marketplace, (2) at lower costs and equivalent quality, or (3) at higher quality and equivalent costs.

When businesses become destructive to the common good is when they form a duopoly with government to gain wealth in the absence of lower costs, higher quality, or new products and services.

For example, they gain wealth by exploiting politicians to grant them preferential tax and regulatory treatment.

Which begs the question -- list specific corporations that are corrupt and lets figure out why ?

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truth to power
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Oh my God... He is still here.

So, he got his ass spanked so bad in that last thread to the point where he could no longer defend his idiocy, he now decides the best thing to do is start a clean thread and rehash all of his bullshit talking points which we have already revealed to be some of the stupidest and most unsupported crap on the face of the Earth.

Everyone enjoy your poop sandwhich. I for one am not going to swallow this again.

ad hominem.

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truth to power
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I guess you didnt even read the article or do you have comprehension problems?

It said that the Chinese solar stocks SOARED on the market after it was announced that China would heavily subsidize them. That means that investors became confident these Chinese solar stocks would do well since China was going to help them get off the ground! I was invested in a China solar stock for a few years ago. I wish I was still!--Erik300

I guess you dont understand my fundamental point which is government that controls wealth will do so for political motives versus economic realities.

China has not seen growth since the 1980's because of government managed schemes like subsidies to alternative energy concerns. It has seen growth because it has removed government control over a significant minority of the economy.

If government dictate was responsible for Chinese success that it would have been successful during he communist heyday of the 1960-70's when government controlled and directed all of the economy

Essentially what you are advocating by trumpeting government subsidies to corporations and selective industries in China is crony capitalism or state capitalism which is precisely what you criticize here in the USA ??!!

What is the difference between China bailing out or subsidizing alternative energy schemes and politicians like Bush and Obama bailing out and subsidizing big corporations like GE, oil companies and Wall Street ??

Dont you know that Wall street stocks climbed higher after crony capitalist in the bush and obama administrations bailed them out ?

In sum ,what the Left sees is all that it understands. WHat you dont understand because you cant see it is that government investment requires it to plunder demonstrably profitable companies, remove capital from the marketplace, and guide this capital to politically connected causes that cant succeed without it .

IN contrast, the free market does not require plunder since it is voluntary (when not effected by govt regulatory bias or bailouts), it allocates finite capital to the most profitable ventures as opposed to politically connected ventures, and it succeeds on merit without govt assistance.

This dynamic leads to significantly increased productivity and growth which increase societal living standards for all.

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truth to power
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Quote truth to power:

you fundamentally do not understand the nature of free markets and their efficacy at creating wealth and increasing societal productivity and living standards.

You, my friend, do not understand that we do not have free markets by any stretch and that is exactly why we are wading through this big murky swamp of decreased living standards. It is the "productivity" brought on by screwing the average worker that has created the obscene wealth for the precious few. Free market efficacy my ass!!!!

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Laborisgood
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Quote truth to power:

If government dictate was responsible for Chinese success that it would have been successful during he communist heyday of the 1960-70's when government controlled and directed all of the economy

Essentially what you are advocating by trumpeting government subsidies to corporations and selective industries in China is crony capitalism or state capitalism which is precisely what you criticize here in the USA ??!!

What is the difference between China bailing out or subsidizing alternative energy schemes and politicians like Bush and Obama bailing out and subsidizing big corporations like GE, oil companies and Wall Street ??

Dont you know that Wall street stocks climbed higher after crony capitalist in the bush and obama administrations bailed them out ?

In sum ,what the Left sees is all that it understands. WHat you dont understand because you cant see it is that government investment requires it to plunder demonstrably profitable companies, remove capital from the marketplace, and guide this capital to politically connected causes that cant succeed without it .

IN contrast, the free market does not require plunder since it is voluntary (when not effected by govt regulatory bias or bailouts), it allocates finite capital to the most profitable ventures as opposed to politically connected ventures, and it succeeds on merit without govt assistance.

This dynamic leads to significantly increased productivity and growth which increase societal living standards for all.

Even a 5th grader can understand that new revolutionary modern industries like solar and wind require more capital than is available from private investment. The govt gave free land to the RR companies to build tracks across the country. There are dozens of examples.

But OIL is a very mature industry that is very profitable and doesnt need govt subsidies-so why do we? Crony capitalism is why. Why you cant understand that simple principle is beyond my comprehension.

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Erik300
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DR.Econ said: You will be happy to learn the government invented solar cells to get it's spaceship to the moon. And it succeeded--

Truth to Power said: Where did the government get the money or capital to research solar cells ?What was the government's 'net profit' from this enterprise?

The answer to your first point is obvious - from taxes. I mean, it's real obvious. Would you please not waste people's time on stupid questions like these?

The answer to your second point is also obvious - the very existence of the world wide solar industry proves that the invention was worthwhile.

It also proves that your contention - that government intervention always leads to corruption - is also false.

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Dr. Econ
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Quote truth to power:This dynamic leads to significantly increased productivity and growth which increase societal living standards for all.

Growth is finished.

http://richardheinberg.com/museletter232

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Garrett78
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Quote truth to power:

..China has not seen growth since the 1980's because of government managed schemes like subsidies to alternative energy concerns. It has seen growth because it has removed government control over a significant minority of the economy.

I can see why you don't want to talk about Solar Energy, since Erik300 proved you wrong.

But your theory about growth in China might have worked in the 80's. But to hold onto it after 30 years of massive Chinese intervention in an industrial policy seems to me absurd. Also, compare our 'industrial policy' with theirs. They have had a huge and massive industrial policy, import protections, research and education effort, while we 'liberated' with reducing trade tariffs, key industrial deregulation in oil, airlines, media, steel. Guess who is becoming an industrial giant and who is falling by the way side, loosing sector after sector? And China has done all this with a huge dictatorial government apparatus that you would predict would fail from corruption. Instead, whatever corruption has remained has not harmed it's economic growth one bit.

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Dr. Econ
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Quote truth to power:

I started an earlier thread illuminating the vulnerability of big government to corruption from political interests

Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely

Let's take this head on, shall we?

The most powerful, richest and largest middle class nation in the history of the world was arguably the US post WWII. It was still the number one manufacturing exporter until the early 80's. Do you agree?

Yet, the nation has had ever increasing government spending.

How do you respond to these obvious stylized facts?

And the reverse.

Dr. Econ's picture
Dr. Econ
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote truth to power:

@ bushwhacker

Your labor is worth 200k because your employer adds value to that labor. Otherwise, you should contract out your skill set independently.

Otherwise your subjective and selective accounting doesn't add up when juxtapose economic reality.

Hence, take your 200k skill set with the 25k in total expenses and pocket the additional 175k yourself.

Which begs the question -- if you are so valuable to the marketplace, why do you have to surrender control of your talent to a greedy employer?

The fact of the matter is that you overrate your talents and underrate the contributions of your employer without which you probably wouldnt have a job otherwise you should risk your own money and talents with your 'society owes me a living' rhetoric.

It's in the works as I type. But you miss the point.

Bush_Wacker's picture
Bush_Wacker
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Jun. 25, 2011 7:53 am
Quote truth to power:
Oh my God... He is still here.

So, he got his ass spanked so bad in that last thread to the point where he could no longer defend his idiocy, he now decides the best thing to do is start a clean thread and rehash all of his bullshit talking points which we have already revealed to be some of the stupidest and most unsupported crap on the face of the Earth.

Everyone enjoy your poop sandwhich. I for one am not going to swallow this again.

ad hominem.

ACtually, I was directly referring to the fact that you were completely incapable of defending your views or responding to the many critiques of those views in the last thread you created. An Ad hominem would be calling you a fucking idiot. But I didn't do that. I called your arguments stupid and noted that you were still incapable of responding to any of us in the last thread. But I didn't say you were a fucking idiot. That would just be rude....

ah2
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Dec. 13, 2010 10:00 pm
Quote truth to power:"Why Thom is still wrong on the economy"

Let me take yet another angle on this.

Your basic criticism is that Thom is too idealistic in his recommendation of government intervention and spending.

Yet what is more idealistic than a Libertarian?

Hence, your criticism is contradictory and thus false.

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Dr. Econ
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote ah2: I called your arguments stupid and noted that you were still incapable of responding to any of us in the last thread.

Do you remember Thom talking about what the Republican trolls want to do on the internet? They don't want to debate. They want to destroy intelligent conversation of any type. Defending their ideas is the last thing they want to do. It is probably the case that this is what our friend Truth To Power is trying to do. Just muddy the waters and have innocent bystanders think 'if there is smoke there is fire'.

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Dr. Econ
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Calling him a Libertarian is giving him too much credit.

I do love the ideal notion of everybody working as an independent contractor within the monopolistic capitalism we are so blessed with. The employer doesn't add value to the labor per se, they are the more often than not, just the middle man skimming off the top when the system allows it. We need to have a more diverse pool of independent participants in our commerce. We need a much larger goup of smaller companies to move towards that ideal. Employers are necessary and they are capable of adding some value to said labor, but their creating of jobs out of benevolence is the absurd notion that needs to be called out whenever it gets trotted out.

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Laborisgood
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Societies and economies evolve. The government of 1776 was appropriate for the times.

Outside; of the plantation system of the south, we were primarily a nation of independent shop keepers,,farmers and craftsmen. The industrial revolution changed that. Now we're a nation of wage earners with most totally dependent upon another for their livelihood and a few major corporations and financial firms controlling and owning nearly everything worth controlling. or owning...including government. That evolved over time with a rapidly quickening pace in our own era..

The Constitutiton has never been changed to reflect the changed economic and power structures.. As Jefferson noted, it should be re-examined every 20 years or so. The Founding Fathers knew it wasn't holy writ even though we seem to think it is.

An economic ideology of 200 years ago really isn't applicable in the present. It isn't the same country, It isn't the same economic structure..

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease"

.

polycarp2
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Even a 5th grader can understand that new revolutionary modern industries like solar and wind require more capital than is available from private investment. --Erik300

Erik if government has more private captial then the private sector then where do you suppose government gets its capital ???

For example, government gets its resources from the private sector, so the notion that the government is bigger than the very entity that sustains it is typical leftist illogic.

Also, if government was most effective at allocating vast sums of resources and capital then why do command economies fail ?

You would think that North Korea, USSR, Zimbabwe, Cuba et al would be paradise -- when the exact opposite is true.

The truth is that when politicians decide what industries and companies should get preferential tax and regulatory treatment other segments of the economy receive less labor and capital that they would normally have access to. Essentially you are basing societal wealth and productivity choices based on artificial political and ideological motives instead of economic reality.

Moreover, Japan which has adopted protectionist measures against intrusion into its auto industry has been a basket case for several decades precisely because of the misallocation of resources from productive enterprises and industries to those favored by politicians and their uncompetitive cronies in private industry who required govt assistance.

In addition, if the Chinese want to subsidize solar energy at the expense of other industries and companies in their society and provide AMericans with artificially low cost solar energy technology -- then by all means let them go broke doing this while we benefit off their cheap misallocated labor and capital while it lasts. We can use the cheaper energy across wide swaths of our economy to improve areas that we are expert in based on competitive economic realities and free market machinations.

In sum, it is insanity that we take resources from productive enterprises to subsidize politically connected enterprises and industries that can't attract capital by voluntary means so struggling American consumers and businesses can pay more for American products instead of buying already cheaper Chinese goods.

truth to power's picture
truth to power
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Jul. 27, 2011 7:21 pm
You, my friend, do not understand that we do not have free markets by any stretch and that is exactly why we are wading through this big murky swamp of decreased living standards. It is the "productivity" brought on by screwing the average worker that has created the obscene wealth for the precious few. Free market efficacy my ass!!!!--Laborisgood

Give me a specific example of WHO is doing the screwing ?

What company?

What CEO?

And I will proceed to debunk and expose the folly of your 'logic'

Lastly, it is typical Leftists 'logic' that you state the obvious that the free market is not in play -- yet in the same market you end with the mantra "Free market efficacy my ass!!!!"

How can you criticize the free market when it has not been in play at anytime either before or during the current crisis ?

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truth to power
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Jul. 27, 2011 7:21 pm
The answer to your first point is obvious - from taxes. I mean, it's real obvious. Would you please not waste people's time on stupid questions like these?

The answer to your second point is also obvious - the very existence of the world wide solar industry proves that the invention was worthwhile.

It also proves that your contention - that government intervention always leads to corruption - is also false.--Dr. Econ

Are you serious dude ?!

Essentially taxation is not an increase in societal wealth and productivity, it is the exact opposite -- mainly government forces productive enterprises and individuals to surrender resources to fund unproductive enterprises.

By definition, only productive enterprises and individuals pay taxes, AND by definition only unproductive enterprises and individuals require subsidies. So society is forced into a depressionary spiral by continuous forced redistribution of capital, labor, and resources from demonstrably productive enterprises and individuals to inefficient wasteful and corrupt politically connected individuals (potential voting blocs) and enterprises (potential campaign contributors) .

This last one is a doozy too !!!

The answer to your second point is also obvious - the very existence of the world wide solar industry proves that the invention was worthwhile.

It also proves that your contention - that government intervention always leads to corruption - is also false.--Dr. Econ

Your personal opinion in the absence of logic, empirical evidence and facts notwithstanding -- what is your metric for determining that government taxation of productive companies and industries and redistributing these resources to solar energy resulted in a net benefit to society ?

Of course, government can plunder $100 from society and redistributed it back into society for some gain less than $100 -- however, what liberals fail to understand or recognize is that opportunity costs exist when $100 is forced from the hands of productive firms and individuals.

For example, society has entrusted politicians with spending $100 that they didnt earn themselves -- they merely used coercive means (taxation) to acquire this money. Moreover, they did not experience the same level of risk when allocating this money that the original owner would have experienced, hence they exercised far less due diligence when choosing where to spend it. In addition, politicians spend money primarily in ways that can get them either 1) more votes in the next election or 2) more campaign contributions in the next election. These considerations are hardly consistent with a strong and dynamic economy because societal actors spend more resources on lobbying for this government largesse instead of simply producing better products at lower costs.

In sum your absurd notion that "very existence of the world wide solar industry proves that the invention was worthwhile." does not take into account what was lost to society when money was divert from private hands to govt hands.

Note this fact from the most recent govt redistributive debacle:

From the EXTREME RIGHT WING Washington Post on the cost per each green job created by Obama's stimulus nonsense is $5 million per job !!!!

truth to power's picture
truth to power
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Jul. 27, 2011 7:21 pm

I'd love to see a list of both "productive" and "unproductive" enterprises, along with definitions of those terms I've placed in quotation marks.

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Garrett78
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Sep. 3, 2010 9:20 am
Let's take this head on, shall we?

The most powerful, richest and largest middle class nation in the history of the world was arguably the US post WWII. It was still the number one manufacturing exporter until the early 80's. Do you agree?

Yet, the nation has had ever increasing government spending.

How do you respond to these obvious stylized facts?--Dr. Econ

Indeed, the US was the world's number one manufacturing exporter because it was the ONLY world's exporter of note in the massive destruction of WWII. Moreover, in the aftermath of WWII and the New Deal policies that prolonged the Great Depression, govt as a percentage of GDP was cut drastically and low and behold when govt is downsized the middle class and growth increase !!

Also, we didnt have the drag of FDR's predatory regulatory regime that picked winners and losers in the economy at the expense of growth. America de-regulated and allowed productive and competitive firms to flourish rather than labor unions and politically connected corporations. Moreover, the drag of medicare and medicaid didnt exist - health care costs as a percentage of GDP was only 5%, yet thanks to profligate govt and its cronies in the private sector (big pharma, big insurance, et al) spending and control of health care has rocketed to over 20% of the economy.

And yes, ever increasing government spending has created a considerable drag on economic performance, albeit the USA still has a relatively free economy -- at least until 2006 when the Democrats took control of COngress when the unemployment rate was 4%, the yearly deficit was $150 billion, and growth was 4%. After Obama's and Pelosi's hostile regulatory policy unemployment has more than doubled, the deficit is ten times what it was in Bush's last fiscal year, and growth is stagnant.

However, I will readily acknowledge that the Bush administration recklessly expanded government creating fissures in the US economy that Obama's policies opened ever wider.

truth to power's picture
truth to power
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Jul. 27, 2011 7:21 pm

I do love the ideal notion of everybody working as an independent contractor within the monopolistic capitalism we are so blessed with. The employer doesn't add value to the labor per se, they are the more often than not, just the middle man skimming off the top when the system allows it. -- laborisgood.

Which begs the question, if you are so talented -- and maybe you are -- lets determine why you have to work for a company that you think exploits you .

Moreover, what is it about the system that prevents you from striking out on your own as a private contractor making $200k a year with $25k in expenses.

Lets examine this objectively like intelligent folk.

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truth to power
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Jul. 27, 2011 7:21 pm

The implication here is that Tea party really cares about "big government" whatever that very popular right-wing soundbite/talking point means(what determines if something is "big government" as opposed to "medium sized government" as opposed to "big government"). HMMMM so if the tea party really cares about limited government have we seen that in the candidates they choose? Have we seen that in the presidentical candidates they tend to favor according to polls? I don't think so.

Here is an interesting comparison. Lets compare "Obamacare" with medicare part D and contrast the way the tea party has reacted to each.

Is Obamacare deficit neutral? Yes and in fact according to the CBO repealing it will result in add 230 billion to the deficit

http://thehill.com/blogs/healthwatch/politics-elections/136363-cbo-says-...

Medicare part D on the other hand wasn't not defict neutral

http://www.forbes.com/2009/11/19/republican-budget-hypocrisy-health-care...

So which of the two does the Tea Party movement hate the most? I think we all know the answer. In fact every Republican candidate for president said they would not repeal the medicare prescription drug bill but would repeal "obamacare"

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/09/18/gop-2012-candidates-opposed-t...

Oh but the tea party members might say "oh but those are Republicans not the tea party". Ya right. You mean polling data wouldn't consistently show that the candidates those who identiy as tea party members consistently favor these very same Republican candidates? The tea party is and always has been the same old Republican base.

But the larger point here is I don't think anyone should take the tea party movement at face value when they start lecturing anyone with their tiresome scripted "big government" soundbites. I don't believe the vast majority of the Tea party movement cares about "big government" but they just use it simply as a rhetorical tool because they feel politically its very effective. If this wasn't the case then we would see far more consistency in their rhetoric but we don't.

NW Oregon Dude's picture
NW Oregon Dude
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Oct. 19, 2011 11:40 am
Now we're a nation of wage earners with most totally dependent upon another for their livelihood and a few major corporations and financial firms controlling and owning nearly everything worth controlling. or owning...including government.-- dr. econ

Your wrong again doc econ (except for the part about a few major corporations controlling government -- include environmentalists, trial lawyers, and labor unions in that mix too).

Small firms:

  • Represent 99.7 percent of all employer firms.

  • Employ just over half of all private sector employees.

  • Pay 44 percent of total U.S. private payroll.

  • Have generated 64 percent of net new jobs over the past 15 years.

  • Create more than half of the nonfarm private gross domestic product (GDP).

  • Hire 40 percent of high tech workers (such as scientists, engineers, and computer programmers).

  • Are 52 percent home-based and 2 percent franchises.

  • Made up 97.3 percent of all identified exporters and produced 30.2 percent of the known export value in FY 2007.

  • Produce 13 times more patents per employee than large patenting firms; these patents are twice as likely as large firm patents to be among the one percent most cited.

You gotta stop listening exclusively to Thom, he is offering a severely one-sided view.

Source: Small Business Administration

truth to power's picture
truth to power
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Jul. 27, 2011 7:21 pm

I'd love to see a list of both "productive" and "unproductive" enterprises, along with definitions of those terms I've placed in quotation marks.--garrett78

a productive enterprise or individual doesnt need or benefit from tax and regulatory subsidies.

truth to power's picture
truth to power
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Jul. 27, 2011 7:21 pm

Are oil, big ag and big pharma productive or unproductive?

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Laborisgood
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote truth to power:

I'd love to see a list of both "productive" and "unproductive" enterprises, along with definitions of those terms I've placed in quotation marks.--garrett78

a productive enterprise or individual doesnt need or benefit from tax and regulatory subsidies.

Please list 10 specific examples of productive enterprises and individuals who do/did not need or benefit from tax and regulatory subsidies.

Please list 10 specific examples of unproductive enterprises and individuals who do/did need or benefit(ed) from tax and regulatory subsidies.

Garrett78's picture
Garrett78
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Sep. 3, 2010 9:20 am

And yes, ever increasing government spending has created a considerable drag on economic performance, albeit the USA still has a relatively free economy -- at least until 2006 when the Democrats took control of COngress when the unemployment rate was 4%, the yearly deficit was $150 billion, and growth was 4%. After Obama's and Pelosi's hostile regulatory policy unemployment has more than doubled, the deficit is ten times what it was in Bush's last fiscal year, and growth is stagnant.

However, I will readily acknowledge that the Bush administration recklessly expanded government creating fissures in the US economy that Obama's policies opened ever wider.

What a blatant falsehood. The defict not only didn't increase 10 times from the last Bush fiscal year to the first Obama fiscal year but it actually DECREASED.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/budget/fy2012/assets/h...

read 2009 which would be the last Bush fiscal year(october 2008 - september 2009) had a deficit of 1.412688 trillion

read 2010 which would be the first Obama fiscal year(October 2009-september 2010) had a deficit of 1.293489 trillion

Is 1.293489 less than 1.412688?

Now why should anyone take anything you say seriously when assert such blatant nonsense?

Even before Obama took office the CBO projected the deficit would increase to 1.2 trillion

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/08/business/economy/08deficit.html

Furthermore I do find it beyond tiresome when those on the right time and time again define debt and the defict entirely as a function of spending when it is obviously a function of both spending and revenue and the revenue is especially relevant given that revenue & taxes have been at historical lows by a number of different criteria.

Fact is the # reason for the sharp increase in debt the last 3 years isn't from spending but the decline in revenue from first and foremost the downturn in the economy and second the Bush Tax cuts.

Geez.

The talking points and narratives from the right just never die

NW Oregon Dude's picture
NW Oregon Dude
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Oct. 19, 2011 11:40 am

Dr.econ says: The most powerful, richest and largest middle class nation in the history of the world was arguably the US post WWII. It was still the number one manufacturing exporter until the early 80's. Do you agree?

Yet, the nation has had ever increasing government spending.

How do you respond to these obvious stylized facts?

TRUTH TO POWER RESPONDS: "Indeed, the US was the world's number one manufacturing exporter because it was the ONLY world's exporter of note in the massive destruction of WWII".

But the economies were rebuilt, most returned to the pre-war GDP levels in a few years. Yet the US was the number 1 exporter until the early 80's. Thus, your claim is false. Also, other nations such as Canada, Australia, Sweeden, Switzerland were not touched. Thus that claim is also false.

Dr. Econ's picture
Dr. Econ
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

I'll say it again, GDP is such a severely flawed metric that I don't understand why some take it seriously.

As David Korten says, GDP needs to be shrunk.

Garrett78's picture
Garrett78
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Sep. 3, 2010 9:20 am
Quote DR. ECON:

The answer to your second point is also obvious - the very existence of the world wide solar industry proves that the invention was worthwhile.

It also proves that your contention - that government intervention always leads to corruption - is also false.

TRUTH TO POWER RESPONDS:...what is your metric for determining that government taxation of productive companies and industries and redistributing these resources to solar energy resulted in a net benefit to society ?

DR. ECON ANSWERS: You are implying that the solar industry is not worthwhile, even though millions are produced each year and millions of people buy them each year. That is such an obvious, incontrovertible fact I am really at a loss to understand how you can come to any other conclusion. And any intelligent person can have an idea of the magnitude of the cost - probably a few dollars per year per taxpayer for a few years in the 60's. Almost nothing. these facts are so obvious, I don't know what to say.

Dr. Econ's picture
Dr. Econ
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Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote DR. Econ:The most powerful, richest and largest middle class nation in the history of the world was arguably the US post WWII. It was still the number one manufacturing exporter until the early 80's. Do you agree? Yet, the nation has had ever increasing government spending. How do you respond to these obvious stylized facts?

TRUTH TO POWER RESPONDS: Also, we didn't have the drag of FDR's predatory regulatory regime that picked winners and losers in the economy at the expense of growth. America de-regulated and allowed productive and competitive firms to flourish rather than labor unions and politically connected corporations.

That is simply false. A few FDR jobs programs were shut down because everyone became employed during the war. America did not "DE-regulate". America's labor unions were strong during this period. Social security, TVA, the infrastructure, taxes, welfare, education, the 30 year home loan, financial regulations, all remained intact and expanded over the period. Also, FDR did not pick winners and losers until the war, when he gave contracts to Ford to build cars, GE to build electronics equipment, and so on. And all those firms used their war contracts to boost production and automation and built the strongest economy the world has ever seen. FDR picked all "the winners" right.

Dr. Econ's picture
Dr. Econ
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Currently Chatting

The Real Carbon “Monster” Revealed

Another day, another stupid assault on the truth by the fossil fuel industry and its paid lackeys. In a recent op-ed for the New York Post, Tom Harris, the executive director of the so-called International Climate Science Coalition -- an organization that’s funded, in part, by the fossil fuel industry -- blasted Leonardo DiCaprio for his work on “Carbon,” a new documentary on climate change that I helped write and present.

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