Dr Alan Blinder, Princeton University Professor of Economics and Public Affairs, is at it again.
First, some side issues which he raises:
Since the economy as a whole created 5.41 million net new jobs over the past three years, you might expect that about 4.51 million of them were in the private sector and about 900,000 were in the public sector. In fact, the private sector created 6.56 million net new jobs over the past three years while about 1.14 million net government jobs were eliminated via layoffs and spending cutbacks.
Recall the zeal with which President Barack Obama’s DoJ is attacking leakers, to the point of a broad-band raid on AP reporters’ and editors’ (with its collateral raid on Congressmen) telephone records and an accusation of a specific reporter having criminal culpability in order to get a search warrant to obtain his personal emails (with its collateral raid on the reporter’s parents’ email).
A (draft) Defense Inspector General report on ex-Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta’s leaks had some interesting things to say.
What’s up with this? Is it getting warmer? Well, yes, maybe, depending on the time scale and the baseline of comparison. It’s warmer today than during the last Ice Age. It’s warmer today than during the Little Ice Age of some 3-4 hundred years ago and that ended around 1 hundred years ago. It’s hard to say, though, how today’s temperature compares with the Medieval Warm Period of some 1,000 years ago, since data sets like NASA’s have been falsified to plus up the claimed warming of today. We aren’t warmer than we were a decade and a half ago.
In no particular order, we’ve had in just the last few months the following:
1. The State Department leaving Benghazi consulate personnel to die, with too little security and no effort to help real-time; a President who absented himself from the situation in favor of a political campaign; and subsequent lies and cover-ups by both about events surrounding that.
2. The Department of Justice targeting our free press and individual members of it in order to suppress reporting of the secret doings of our government.
John Hinderaker, of Power Line, suggests that
we have an utterly inept government, which, on top of its incompetence, places little value on economic growth.
President Barack Obama is on record as believing
I do think at a certain point you’ve made enough money.
Whether Hinderaker is right about the ineptness is a separate question. What is clear, though, from Obama’s policies and his continued proselytizing of them in the face of their utter failure from a free market perspective is this: when Obama made that remark (the 2010 mid-term election campaign season), he was talking about our country as a whole, not just a few of his evil Fat Cat Wall Streeters.
DNI James Clapper, over the weekend, declassified and released a Fact Sheet on the just revealed PRISM project. PRISM is represented as an internal government IT program whose purpose is to gather
foreign intelligence information from electronic communication service providers under court supervision, as authorized by Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act….
All such information is obtained with FISA Court approval and with the knowledge of the provider based upon a written directive from the Attorney General and the Director of National Intelligence. In short, Section 702 facilitates the targeted acquisition of foreign intelligence information concerning foreign targets located outside the United States under court oversight.
It is an either/or case. We can’t have our individual freedoms with Government looking over our shoulders all the time.
To be sure, whenever men form a social compact led by a consensual government, we give up a small measure of our freedoms to that government to enable it to help us protect our freedoms. This protection includes protecting for us that component of our freedom given over to our government for the purpose. But that’s voluntary at the time of the compact’s formation, and it does not authorize the consensual government to arrogate ever more of our liberties—or of our responsibilities—to itself on its claimed need.
In a Friday op-ed, the editors of the WSJ had this to say, among other things, about the government’s invasion of American privacy in the name of “security.”
The effectiveness of data-mining is proportional to the size of the sample, so the NSA must sweep broadly to learn what is normal and refine the deviations. A nongovernment analogue might be the credit card flags that freeze payment when, say, a New Yorker goes on a shopping spree in Phoenix.
This is a preview of
The Wall Street Journal’s Embarrassing…Naiveté
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…when I wish The New York Times could still be taken seriously. Their editorial in this morning’s edition is one of those times.
Read it in full. It still beats the drums for some of NYT‘s hobby horses (not to mix metaphors, or anything), but those are asides; the central point is plain. It may be that the NYT finally is waking up to reality.
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The Federal government wants to nationalize another American private industry, this one nascent rather than burgeoning. The State Department wants to classify privately owned and operated manned space vehicles as weapons and then to control these as such.
In a proposed Amendment to the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (recall that Secretary of State John Kerry says in all seriousness that the US will sign the just concluded international arms control “treaty”), State insists pretty much that anything that flies into space must be a weapon, and so cannot be allowed to leave the United States government’s control. The immediate effect will be to hinder, if not destroy, a budding space tourism industry, an industry that has such serious enterprises as Virgin Space, Xcor, and SpaceX, as major players.