Bravo Hillary. This is great news. Don’t forget Tom Friedman’s idea– only allow the Keystone pipeline in exchange for a massive carbon tax. Also, it is time to raise the carbon tax as a vital and essential tool, without mentioning it, you have less of a mandate to do it. Do you really want to give Bernie Sanders the high ground, on what might be the most critical tool needed by the US and the world to mitigate climate change, backed by most economists? Shame on the two writers, Gabriel and Davenport for their ugly tone. To listen to their condescending soft-smears, the soul-less Hillary Clinton is mostly going after a voting block and a few rich donors. If you hate this amazing woman leader, go work for Fox News.
Most emailed at NYT for several days now. The top comments are also enchanting. Like the song by Kansas, we are only dust in the wind.
The adults patrolling the playpen of Republican politics are appalled that we’ve become a society where it’s O.K. to make fun of veterans, to call anyone who isn’t rich a loser, to cast an entire group of newly arrived strivers as rapists and shiftless criminals. Somewhere, we crossed a line — from our mothers’ modesty to strutting braggadocio, from dutiful decorum to smashing all the china in the room, from respecting a base set of facts to a trumpeting of willful ignorance. via Trump Is the Poison His Party Concocted – The New York Times.
“The Army’s plan to cut 40,000 troops, as well as 17,000 civilian employees, over the next two years is unsettling many American communities. Congressmen and senators in the affected districts are railing against the reductions and insisting they will fight to reverse them. But the cutbacks are a sensible and necessary move, and they should not come as a surprise since it was Congress that approved big cuts in federal defense spending.”
There are great comments in the NYT. Here is one of my favorites:
“Reducing the number of troops by a reasonable amount is a start, but Congress should really be focusing on wasteful defense projects, and either eliminating them all together, or finding cheaper alternatives. However, many of these wasteful projects are pork for our representatives in Congress. For example, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is already 200 billion dollars over budget, and it can’t fly at night or in bad weather. However, its developers (who are major campaign donors) were quick to defend this aircraft. The C-27J Spartan transport aircraft was developed, built, and literally flown from the factory to the boneyard after costing over 500 million dollars to design, despite the Air Force not having a use for them. Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio, where the C-27J was built, and six other Democratic senators thought otherwise and pushed the project anyway. Then there’s the 300 extra M-1 Abrams tanks that are being built at a cost of 2 billion dollars, despite the Army having not wanting them.
“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and not clothed…” – Dwight D. Eisenhower “
“Understandably, Mr. Kopoulos is not thrilled that he pays annual fees of more than $4,000 to the town for his six cars and that Uber takes much of his summer business.
“They should have respect for the local drivers,” he said. “They tried to take over. They had 500 cars and no permits. I have a place where I park my cars. I have office space at 62 Newtown Lane. Uber doesn’t have any of that.” ”
Consumer alert. Avoid the Hamptons, unless you have your own private transportation. The town is in a war with Uber and shut it down, because they didn’t get a cut of the action. Many of the cab companies are dumps famous for overcharging, and gypsy cabs are often pirates too. The Hamptons, a good place not to go.
Some cities and towns have allowed cab companies to overcharge, because they are taking huge fees to license the cab companies. They haven’t, at least in New Haven, ever bothered to get the system to work for the consumer. Some cities and towns probably deserve to be cut out of the loop, by the Uber solution. The huge fees municipalities charge cab companies and licensed operators are a hidden tax to the consumer.
On the other hand, the cities and towns have to maintain the roads and police so cabs can roll. Can cities and towns gently get a financial compromise from Uber, that doesn’t feel like a shakedown of both the company, and its happy riders? This debate and tug of war is interesting and worth watching.
There is a good consumer argument in my mind, that other, more general taxes and fees go to cover the cost of roads and police. In the US, we should, as environmentalists, want our taxes to encourage the use of public transportation. Cabs are probably better than everyone driving in their own cars everywhere, so we want to encourage their use, and make sure they are an excellent value. That is the Uber advantage apparently.
Goodbye, Chicago boys. Hello, M.I.T. gang.
If you don’t know what I’m talking about, the term “Chicago boys” was originally used to refer to Latin American economists, trained at the University of Chicago, who took radical free-market ideology back to their home countries. The influence of these economists was part of a broader phenomenon: The 1970s and 1980s were an era of ascendancy for laissez-faire economic ideas and the Chicago school, which promoted those ideas.
Hamden, CT, Hold your breath.