California’s Government Unions Collect $1.0 Billion Per Year

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By Ed Ring, executive director, California Policy Center

 

“If you say there is an elephant in the room, you mean that there is an obvious problem or difficult situation that people do not want to talk about.”
–  Cambridge Dictionaries Online

If you study California’s legislature, it doesn’t take long to learn there’s an elephant in both chambers, bigger and badder than every other beast. And considering the immense size of that elephant, and the power it wields, it doesn’t get talked about much.

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UBS to pay $545 million to settle U.S. investigations into role in manipulating currency and interest rates

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For those who don’t remember the massive (and we mean massive) LIBOR manipulation scandal from a few years back (the reason UBS is now paying a fine) here’s a short video explaining what essentially went on.

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The Forgotten Depression (Forgotten because the market corrected so quickly, sans government intervention)

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It’s a simple concept but one which is lost on many modern economists and lay people alike.

In the event of an economic downturn get government out of the way. Let markets clear. Then like a forest after a forest fire the economy will come back with real growth. 

Of course no one likes this idea—the one that actually works—because when things go bad everyone wants leaders “to do something, anything!” This action from planners and pols then in turn extends recessions/depressions as was the case during the Great Depression and the most recent depression.

But this was not the case during the acute, but short, 1920-1921 depression. Lack of government action allowed the system to correct and thereby lessened the long term pain.

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I’ve Read Obama’s Secret Trade Deal. Elizabeth Warren Is Right to Be Concerned.

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The unions don’t like it. Many libertarians and free market types don’t like it. But Obama and the Chamber of Commerce are keen. Something smells here.

Something else to keep in mind. Just because something is called free trade doesn’t mean it actually is free trade. My bet, and the author alludes to this, is that the agreement will be full of crony nooks and crannies. Nooks and crannies some would prefer the public not learn about.

Until it’s too late.

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Ron Paul was right about the Iraq War, Now GOP presidential hopefuls are accepting this fact

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Ron Paul has long been ahead of the curve. He anticipated the 2008 financial crisis. His “Ron Paul Revolution” was the seed which grew into the robust and mainstream libertarian tendency within the GOP we see today. And he was right on Iraq—it was a mistake of colossal proportions.

But while Ron Paul was predicting a Fed created economic catastrophe and outlining why it was that invading Iraq was wrong and indeed anathema to what America was supposed to stand for, the GOP was fully engaged in disavowing the spirit of Ronald Reagan (spirit) and embracing a big government philosophy.

The Bush years were years of big government “conservatism.” The neocon coup.

Iraq in many ways is what broke the modern—William F. Buckley, Jack Kemp, Ronald Reagan—conservative movement. Bush blew it up just like so many bridges across the Tigris.

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More Crony Media: The protected, connected liberal media elite

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I hate the term “elite.” This implies some sort of extraordinary skill, which in my experience in Washington, at least with the media and definitely in politics is not apt. But you get the point. Statist, entitled, usually wealthy (though typically not rich) folks who like to frequent the Georgetown cocktail circuit and get a thrill when Politico comes calling. The folks who actually care about Washingtonian Magazine.

They aren’t elite, but they are the political class. And they are protected. The Stephanopoulos kerfuffle is a great example. Why does this guy still have a job?

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“We were thinking, ‘O.K., Qaddafi is dead, or about to be, and there’s opportunities,’

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The New York Times reports on the the dealings of one Sidney Blumenthal, Bill Clinton White House confidant, who saw dollars to be made in a post Qaddafi Libya. He was advising Secretary of State Clinton at the time. (In an unofficial capacity.)

Mr. Blumenthal (it appears) was looking to cash in on his relationship with Ms. Clinton.

Not many fortunes made in Libya, aside from Qaddafi’s. Looks like Blumenthal learned this.

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Stephanopoulos Flap Exposes Partisan Divide on Media Bias

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I think Mr. Ziegler is too kind here. He gives ‘liberals’ kind of a pass on defending Stephanopoulos, saying essentially that though it’s not OK that they (I am writing in the broadest sense here) don’t see that giving money to the Clinton Foundation by a news anchor is wrong, it is ever-the-less to be expected.

Perhaps. But it should’t be expected.

For too long the crony media have been tolerated simply because the people who understand that the old media (the crony media) is biased toward collectivism and is chock full of bovine dung just accepted this fact. That’s the media for you, they think. The propaganda continues. What-are-ya-gonna-do?

But what many of these same people forget, often, is that there is a whole hunk of America out there who really, honest to goodness thinks that NPR and the New York Times are totally legit. That these outlets are more or less objective.

The more media savvy but less statist inclined often forget this.

Lots of people really do think that George Stephanopoulos is telling them the truth. And for that matter, as much as I have enjoyed the guy over the years, that John Stewart is really telling the truth. (He often does, but he doesn’t see gaping holes in his own arguments, which is natural I suppose.)

There is sort of an assumption by many that only the dim really buy what the mainstream media is selling. (Dim bulbs still vote.) But this is not true. Many very smart people are/were convinced that Bill Clinton’s spinmeister is a completely legitimate reporter and that All Things Considered actually considers all things.

I have (smart) friends who seriously think these things.

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de Blasio’s ‘Progressive’ agenda lifted straight from Socialist, Communist Party talking points?

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Let’s be clear, socialism is fundamentally crony. It is a system of cronies helping other cronies to exploit any legitimate and real wealth there is. That is, until the wealth runs out.

Statism in all its forms is death. Communism, socialism, fascism, all the variants are death – for the economy sooner or later and in many instances for the people who live under such systems. (Sometimes, as in parts of Europe people just go into a kind of coma, like in Denmark for instance where socialism has slowly sapped the vigor of the people since World War II.)

It’s sad to see that 25 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall some still want to believe that reality can be denied. That markets aren’t just the way universe orders itself in economic terms. Markets are like water flowing downhill. Cities are like economic rain forests with millions of market microclimates and unique economic species. It’s a complex web, an ECOsystem. But socialists want to clear cut this beauty with the bulldozer of the state. All in the name of “social justice” of course.

It should also be noted that Mayor de Blasio who supported the communist regime in Nicaragua during the 1980s was probably not a happy guy when communism mercifully came crashing down around the world. That this fellow has anyone listening to him today is a crying shame.

For the record ACC stands with this guy.

For the record ACC stands with this guy.

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