Category Archives: Economics

“Starving the Beast”

  • Debt and the Bush Years

    [Topics: Clinton, Bush, Housing Bubble 2000 Peak, Medicare Part D]

  • Op-Ed from Bruce Bartlett: Tax Cuts And ‘Starving The Beast’

    By 1981 STB was well-established Republican doctrine. In his first major address on the economy as president on Feb. 5, Ronald Reagan articulated the idea perfectly. As he told a nationwide audience that night, “Over the past decades we’ve talked of curtailing spending so that we can then lower the tax burden. … But there were always those who told us that taxes couldn’t be cut until spending was reduced. Well, you know, we can lecture our children about extravagance until we run out of voice and breath. Or we can cure their extravagance by simply reducing their allowance.”

Maxed Out

Seven Hills, NV

“I think you’ve just got to be in a master plan, where there are CC&Rs and they can’t build a mobile home right next door or a nail shop. You know, it’s just strictly a planned community. You’re gonna get your dollars out.”

“I could not have paid for the construction of that house if I hadn’t got the loan-to-value, which means they appraised the house when it was done and loaned me money as what it would sell for.

[Title card: This is the same accounting technique used by Enron.]
Continue reading Maxed Out

Supply/Demand-Side vs. Austrian

I was introduced to Austrian economics via Supply-Side economics, which has a great respect for the Austrians. The Supply-Siders I learned from (mostly the Wanniski branch as opposed to the Mundell or Laffer branches, though I did study with Mundell at Columbia) were constantly quoting Mises and Hayek (but not Rothbard).

The difference between Supply-Side and Demand-Side economics is that Supply-Siders think that production drives the economy and Demand-Siders think consumption drives the economy. Thus, Supply-Side policies tend to focus on things like tax cuts, decreased government spending and a stable currency (i.e. one tied to gold, though not necessarily convertible to gold) to stimulate the economy, and they oppose Demand-Side policies which tend to promote tax increases, increased government spending, and credit expansion to stimulate the economy.

The difference between Supply-Side economics and Austrian economics is that Supply-Side economics is a utilitarian, ends-based framework, while Austrian economics is a morally consistent, means-based framework. For example, Supply-Siders think high taxation is inefficient (using the Laffer Curve as their theoretical basis); Austrians think any taxation is evil robbery. Supply-Siders think the state can work fine, if only producer-friendly policies were pursued; Austrians obviously are enemies of the state.

When I attended Mises U. in 2005, I was still half Supply-Sider, but I’m a full on Austrian now.
[source]

Food and Prices

Wednesday, December 17th, 2008

Wal-Mart

  • 28 OZ Great Value (Wal-Mart Brand) Peanut Butter: $2.08
    • Serv. Size: 32g
    • Calories: 200
      • Fat Cal.: 150
    • Total Fat: 16g
    • Sat. Fat: 3.5g
    • Trans Fat: 0g
    • Polyunsat. Fat: 3.5g
    • Monunsat. Fat: 9g
    • Cholest.: 0mg
    • Sodium: 140mg
    • Potassium: 190mg
    • Total Carb.: 6g
    • Fiber: 2g
    • Sugars: 3g
    • Protein: 8g
    • Vitamin A: 0%
    • Iron: 4%
    • Vitamin C: 0%
    • Folic Acid: 6%
    • Calcium: 0%
    • Ingredients: roasted peanuts, sugar, contains less than 2% of molasses, hydrogenated vegetable oils (rapeseed, cottonseed, soybean), salt.
    • Best by 10/28/2009 (10 months, 11 days from purchase date)
    • Marketed by Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Bentonville, AR 72716
  • Continue reading Food and Prices

Trickle-On Economics Compilation

All information is from Zay N. Smith of the Chicago Sun-Times.

January 10, 2008
Grab your umbrella

QT Trickle-On Economics Update:

The average CEO in this country, as of today, has been paid so far this year what the average worker earns in seven years.


November 27, 2008
Odd definition of ‘forced out’

QT Trickle-On Economics Update:

Citigroup, whose CEO was given an exit package worth $29.5 million when he was forced out because of losses, is considering plans to lay off as many as 45,000 workers to cut costs.

[Charles Prince of Citigroup received an exit package worth $68 million. This was 8 months before Citigroup cut 52,000 jobs].


December 3, 2007
Hedges are green

QT Trickle-On Economics Update:

The top 20 private equity and hedge fund managers made more in 10 minutes last year than the average American worker made in the entire year—

and were taxed at 15 percent.

Continue reading Trickle-On Economics Compilation

Anderson, J. (2008, March 7). Congress Questions Executives on Pay. The New York Times. Retrieved September 22, 2014 from http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/07/business/07cnd-pay.html?pagewanted=print&_r=0
Ellis, D. (2008, November 17). Citigroup to cut more than 50,000 jobs. CNN Money. Retrieved September 22, 2014 from http://money.cnn.com/2008/11/17/news/companies/citigroup/