Republicans and Facts

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Gatoravatara, Feb 20, 2015.

  1. Gatoravatara

    Gatoravatara Protaganista

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    "Scott Walker, the governor of Wisconsin, is said to be a rising contender for the Republican presidential nomination. So, on Wednesday, he did what, these days, any ambitious Republican must, and pledged allegiance to charlatans and cranks.

    For those unfamiliar with the phrase, “charlatans and cranks” is associated with N. Gregory Mankiw, a professor at Harvard who served for a time as George W. Bush’s chief economic adviser. In the first edition of his best-selling economics textbook, Mr. Mankiw used those words to ridicule “supply-siders” who promised that tax cuts would have such magic effects on the economy that deficits would go down, not up.

    But, on Wednesday, Mr. Walker, in what was clearly a rite of passage into serious candidacy, spoke at a dinner at Manhattan’s “21” Club hosted by the three most prominent supply-siders: Art Laffer (he of the curve); Larry Kudlow of CNBC; and Stephen Moore, chief economist of the Heritage Foundation. Politico pointed out that Rick Perry, the former governor of Texas, attended a similar event last month. Clearly, to be a Republican contender you have to court the powerful charlatan caucus.

    So a doctrine that even Republican economists consider dangerous nonsense has become party orthodoxy. And what makes this political triumph especially remarkable is that it comes just as the doctrine’s high priests have been setting new standards for utter, epic predictive failure.

    I’m not talking about the fact that supply-siders didn’t see the crisis coming, although they didn’t. Mr. Moore published a 2004 book titled “Bullish on Bush,” asserting that the Bush agenda was creating a permanently stronger economy. Mr. Kudlow sneered at the “bubbleheads” asserting that inflated home prices were due for a crash. Still, you could argue that few economists of any stripe fully foresaw the coming disaster.

    You can’t say the same, however, about postcrisis developments, where the people Mr. Walker was courting have spent years warning about the wrong things. “Get ready for inflation and higher interest rates” was the title of a June 2009 op-ed article in The Wall Street Journal by Mr. Laffer; what followed were the lowest inflation in two generations and the lowest interest rates in history. Mr. Kudlow and Mr. Moore both predicted 1970s-style stagflation.

    To be fair, Mr. Kudlow and Mr. Laffer eventually admitted that they had been wrong. Neither has, however, given any indication of reconsidering his views, let alone conceding the possibility that the much-hated Keynesians, who have gotten most things right even as the supply-siders were getting everything wrong, might be on to something. Mr. Kudlow describes the failure of runaway inflation to materialize — something he has been predicting since 2008 — as “miraculous.”

    Something else worth noting: as befits his position at Heritage, Mr. Moore likes to publish articles filled with lots of numbers. But his numbers are consistently wrong; they’re for the wrong years, or just plain not what the original sources say. And somehow these errors always run in the direction he wants.

    So what does it say about the current state of the G.O.P. that discussion of economic policy is now monopolized by people who have been wrong about everything, have learned nothing from the experience, and can’t even get their numbers straight?

    The answer, I’d suggest, runs deeper than economic doctrine. Across the board, the modern American right seems to have abandoned the idea that there is an objective reality out there, even if it’s not what your prejudices say should be happening. What are you going to believe, right-wing doctrine or your own lying eyes? These days, the doctrine wins.

    Look at another issue, health reform. Before the Affordable Care Act went into effect, conservatives predicted disaster: health costs would soar, the deficit would explode, more people would lose insurance than gain it. They were wrong on all counts. But, in their rhetoric, even in the alleged facts (none of them true) people like Mr. Moore put in their articles, they simply ignore this reality. Reading them, you’d think that the dismal failure they wrongly predicted had actually happened.

    Then there’s foreign policy. This week Jeb Bush tried to demonstrate his chops in that area, unveiling his team of expert advisers — who are, sure enough, the very people who insisted that the Iraqis would welcome us as liberators.

    And don’t get me started on climate change.

    Along with this denial of reality comes an absence of personal accountability. If anything, alleged experts seem to get points by showing that they’re willing to keep saying the same things no matter how embarrassingly wrong they’ve been in the past.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/20/op...ml?ref=opinion
     
  2. Detroitgator

    Detroitgator General Factotum
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    ... will wait for your equivalent post regarding Dems. After all, you're not political.
     
    • Cowboy

      Cowboy Junior Member
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      Facts?
      They don't need no stinkin' facts.
      Facts are whatever they say they say they are.
      Objective reality has a well known liberal bias.
       
    • Detroitgator

      Detroitgator General Factotum
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      If you want your plan/doctor, you can keep your plan/doctor...

      What has the impact of the employer mandate been? Oh, we don't know yet because it's been delayed... and delayed...

      On and on and on and on...
       
      • Gatoravatara

        Gatoravatara Protaganista

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        You seem to be obsessed with my neutrality. Why dont you see if you can dig up an equivalent one. Are really both parties the same when it come to movement ideologist and clinging to bogus facts. It may seem that I am beating up on the Republicans lately, but I am just following the facts. When it comes to the list of people in the article, they are paid to repeat the same thing over and over regardless of the facts. The Heritage Foundation has made examples of people who deviate slightly because they are looking at the facts. There have been people who have been excommunicated from the Republican party because they starting talking about facts.
         
      • Gatoravatara

        Gatoravatara Protaganista

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        These are not the same. These are promises made by Obama that turned out not to be true. And he admitted that he was wrong. The people in that article never admit to being wrong about their ideology no matter what the facts show.
         
      • Detroitgator

        Detroitgator General Factotum
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        No, I'm amused at your believing that you are something you are not. I'm clearly on the record as saying the two parties are opposite sides of the same coin.
         
        • Detroitgator

          Detroitgator General Factotum
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          It's not a tax... it is a tax.
           
          • divits

            divits A Muffin of the Studly Variety
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            :blahblah:


            Krugman's theories, and that's what all economists deal in really, are wrong just as often as they are right. You can just as easily find articles talking about all his misses. He has become less of an economist and more of a shill for the Obama administration and an inflator of his own ego.
             
          • Gatoravatara

            Gatoravatara Protaganista

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            This is pretty weak sauce.
             
          • Gator Fever

            Gator Fever Senior Member

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            If you listened to Krugman communism should have worked out a lot better than it did.
             
          • Gatoravatara

            Gatoravatara Protaganista

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            Most of the time his theories are right. And when his theories are wrong, he admits it and tells you why they were wrong. He is a top economist, and his work speaks for itself. He has been critical of Obama for being timid on a few things.
             
          • Detroitgator

            Detroitgator General Factotum
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            Regarding immigration: "I don't have the authority to do that"... said 22 times. Then did it.
             
            • TheDouglas78

              TheDouglas78 Well-Known Member

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              Lets all be honest, regardless of the party... politics and facts do not mix.
               
              • WobbleGator

                WobbleGator Chatterbox Mod

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                Republicans lie as much as Democrats do. I mean, both parties are full of politicians.
                 
                • VulcanAlex

                  VulcanAlex Senior Vulcan Cowboy

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                  Gee in economics there are very few facts and many opinions. Simple!!!
                   
                • Gatoravatara

                  Gatoravatara Protaganista

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                  I agree with you on this. But lying and ignoring facts are two different things. "You can keep your doctor" is completely different than insisting "2+2=367"
                   
                • Detroitgator

                  Detroitgator General Factotum
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                  ^^ That's what I said from the get go... I just like pointing out their endlessly hypocrisy, but it gets old.
                   
                • WobbleGator

                  WobbleGator Chatterbox Mod

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                  Republicans ignore facts as much as Democrats do. Is that better?
                   
                • VulcanAlex

                  VulcanAlex Senior Vulcan Cowboy

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                  Gee and just who is saying this sort of thing???
                   

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