The Pyrite State is about to increase taxes . . .

. . . but things will still be worse for the state budget. From The New York Times:


Shortfall in California’s Budget Swells to $16 Billion


By Adam Nagourney | Published: May 12, 2012

LOS ANGELES — The state budget shortfall in California has increased dramatically in the last six months, forcing state officials to assemble a series of new spending cuts that are likely to mean further reductions to schools, health care and other social programs already battered by nearly five years of budget retrenchment, state officials announced on Saturday.

Gov. Jerry Brown, disclosing the development in a video posted on YouTube, said that California’s shortfall was now projected to be $16 billion, up from $9.2 billion in January. Mr. Brown said that he would propose a revised budget on Monday to deal with it.

“We are now facing a $16 billion hole, not the $9 billion we thought in January,” Mr. Brown said. “This means we will have to go much further and make cuts far greater than I asked for at the beginning of the year.”

Mr. Brown disclosed the news in a video that had all the trappings of a campaign announcement. In it, he aggressively accounted for the steps he said he had taken to try to scale back a $26 billion deficit he found upon taking office. And he urged viewers to back an initiative he is putting on the November ballot that would increase sales taxes by 0.25 percent and impose an income tax surcharge on wealthy Californians to try to stave off more cuts.

Governor Brown’s video message calls for, as you’d guess coming from a Democrat, increased taxes. Fortunately for the citizens of California, they approved a measure years ago which requires the consent of the voters for tax increases, which has prevented them from being raped even further.

Revenues, the public are told, didn’t come in as high as expected, and the state’s economy didn’t grow as fast as anticipated. California’s official unemployment rate was 11.0% for March, third highest in the nation.1

It ought to be obvious why revenues aren’t increasing as much as expected and the state’s economy isn’t expanding as fast as projected: the weight of California’s already high taxes is holding it back. The state sales tax rate is already 7.25%, and many localities and other taxing districts have add-ons to that. If the initiative passes, all items subject to the sales tax will see a 0.25% increase. That might not sound like much — Democrats would pooh-pooh it — but that means that another $2.50 out of every $1000 spent will go to the government, and that means that that $2.50 won’t be available to be spent on other consumer goods, which depresses total sales. Taxable sales for the final quarter of 2010 totaled $128.9 billion; the additional sales tax would have been $322.25 million that quarter, or over a billion dollars a year, which means over a billion dollars not available for use by the public to buy other things.

The tax increase proposals do have effects. John Hitchcock noted that young families are leaving California, just the people that the state needs to rescue its economy. Donald Douglas noted that even some profitable corporations are leaving California for places where taxes are not as high. THE WALL STREET JOURNAL noted that many jobs which can be relocated have been relocated to places like Texas. Phineas was writing about the exodus of California businesses two years ago. All of this explains why Governor Brown’s estimate of the revenue increase anticipated from the tax increase proposal is $9 billion, but a review by the nonpartisan analyst’s office estimates revenue of $6.8 billion in fiscal year 2012-13. Given that the Governor is stating that his own estimates for revenue previously have been wrong, your Editor would suggest that perhaps the nonpartisan budget analyst’s office estimates might be be more credible. And if they are accurate, it would mean that the tax increase going before the voters is less than the additional revenue shortfall projected. California seems poised to raise taxes again, and be worse off than they thought they’d be without the tax increase just a few months ago.

Naturally, many of the state’s high income earners are not in a position to pick up and move to Texas; they have to be in California, doing business in California, to maintain that high income. And the dramatic drop in housing values means that many others who might be able to pick up and move will not do so, because they would suffer a substantial loss in selling their homes . . . assuming they could sell at all.

But some high producers have been able to flee the Pyrite State, and some have already done so. Some business that might be done in California is not getting done there, because the entrepreneurs who would have done so have left, while others, seeing the incredible regime of onerous business regulations2 and steadily increasing taxes have figured that no, they really couldn’t make enough of a profit to outweigh the risk of starting a new business.

Since most of the proposed tax increases fall on someone else — the evil rich — the polls indicate that the tax increase proposal will pass. Hey, that’s fine: California is a democracy, and the will of the people is paramount. But when you keep taxing and keep taxing and keep taxing the other guy, eventually the other guy gets disgusted and leaves.
_____________________________________

  1. The link provided is to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and as of May 13, 2012, the March statistics are the latest published. This source will be updated by the BLS, and may not reference the March, 2012, statistic given in the future.
  2. For example, California requires that companies pay overtime after eight hours a day rather than forty hours a week.

34 Comments

  1. For example, California requires that companies pay overtime after eight hours a day rather than forty hours a week.

    Could that be one of the reasons my workplace with its 12-hour shifts and 185 days a year (or more) off is expanding here in Texas and not adding a plant in California? Nah, couldn’t be. Liberals will never learn, despite the proof presenting itself year after year after decade after decade that Leftist policies and agendas destroy the nations that implement them.

    All of this explains why Governor Brown’s estimate of the revenue increase anticipated from the tax increase proposal is $9 billion, but a review by the nonpartisan analyst’s office estimates revenue of $6.8 billion in fiscal year 2012-13.

    That review is also inaccurate since it’s based on static modeling and not dynamic modeling. The major tax increases will cause less economic activity, meaning less revenue. If Governor Moonbeam says 9 billion and the analyst’s office says 6.8 billion, that means California will be extremely lucky if it gets 5 billion, all the while California’s job losses will increase faster than the people fleeing can get out.

    More people will be in the need of financial assistance and food assistance as California has even less ability to provide it. And Democrats, refusing to acknowledge the truth: that they and their policies caused it, will demand even further of the same self-destructive actions. Where’s the proof? Didn’t you just read what Moonbeam said? That’s the proof they’ll keep doing what it is that is destroying California.

  2. There are many companies which offer four ten-hour day workweeks, giving employees three-day weekends; in the Pyrite State, that would mean 32 hours of regular time and eight hours of overtime, so no one will do that.

    My darling bride works either three or four twelve-hour shifts a week, which means either three or four days off a week; a lot of hospitals offer shifts like that. In California, that would mean oodles of OT, so no sensible hospital would go that route.

  3. John Hitchcock says:
    May 13, 2012 at 22:40

    For example, California requires that companies pay overtime after eight hours a day rather than forty hours a week.

    The wage and hours worked Federal Law years ago said OT after 8 hours. But when the gas shortage and pricing made commuting difficult and expensive, the law was changed to anything over 40 hours. This opened up a whole range of possible schemes. Of course 4- 10′s became possible along with 4-9′s and a 4. When I had some NTM Boilermakers working on a project, they said their Union required over 8hrs, it was OT. NTM stood for National Transient Members usually working about a 4 hour ride from home. We agreed that however they got their 40hrs in, it was fine with the crew, and they could get a jump on traffic on Friday. It was a hand shake deal with labor and management and productivity was quite high.

  4. Economic analysts overestimated California’s economic health, thereby overestimating tax revenues, because the economic analysts use a static economic viewpoint.

    Economic analysts underestimated Wisconsin’s economic health, thereby underestimating tax revenues, because the economic analysts use a static economic viewpoint.

    Do you know the reason for the difference in the results, Perry? Even if you did, you would not be honest enough to admit to them. California is run by an economically stifling Democrat machine while Wisconsin is being set economically free by a Republican small government philosophy (which has been proven to work every time it has been tried).

  5. I’m not certain if Wagonwheel’s comment above needs edition for format; did you forget to end a quote?

    However, California’s total state and local tax burden is above the national average, and the state is still facing a huge deficit. Most other states somehow manage to balance their budgets, and do so with lower tax burdens than in California. Pennsylvania, for example, has had to make some painful cuts, but has a tax burden slightly lower than California’s (10.2% to 10.6%), and Pennsylvania has still managed to balance its budget. That suggests to me that there is still more that California can cut.

  6. Perry links to and quotes Governor Moonbeam for why Governor Moonbeam can’t get California out of the morass that Governor Moonbeam and his Democrat henchmen have put California.

  7. I wouldn’t put it all on Governor Moonbeam; he’s only been governor for a little while. The previous governor, a RINO, didn’t do enough to cut spending, and, of course, the state legislature has been solidly Democratic for a long time now. Jerry Brown is still part of the problem rather than the solution, but there’s plenty of blame to be shared.

  8. Editor says:
    May 14, 2012 at 15:52

    However, California’s total state and local tax burden is above the national average, and the state is still facing a huge deficit. Most other states somehow manage to balance their budgets, and do so with lower tax burdens than in California. Pennsylvania, for example, has had to make some painful cuts, but has a tax burden slightly lower than California’s (10.2% to 10.6%), and Pennsylvania has still managed to balance its budget. That suggests to me that there is still more that California can cut.

    In Fast Eddie Rendell’s last year as Governor, he wanted to raise taxes and spending. Well, he is a democrat afterall. But the Republican majority in the House and Senate of PA gave Eddie a big fat NO WAY. Of course he pouted, but in the end signed a balanced budget with NO TAX increase. It can be done, if you have the will power to do it.

  9. Yorkshire wrote:

    In Fast Eddie Rendell’s last year as Governor, he wanted to raise taxes and spending. Well, he is a democrat afterall. But the Republican majority in the House and Senate of PA gave Eddie a big fat NO WAY. Of course he pouted, but in the end signed a balanced budget with NO TAX increase. It can be done, if you have the will power to do it.

    That’s just it: our Democratic friends don’t have the willpower to do it. They see so many good things that government does.

    Well, let’s face it: every government program does some good for somebody, somewhere. But sometimes you just don’t have the money to do every good thing for everybody, everywhere. The Democrats have built their coalition on the premise of doing more things for more people, and they can’t just abandon their coalition members. The Republicans, on the other hand, thanks to the grassroots pressure from the TEA Party, have built a coalition based on not doing everything for everybody, but on lowering taxes and leaving people alone. It’s a new coalition and, who knows, it might not last, but the Republicans have the opportunity, now, to do the right thing and reduce the size and involvement of government.

    And I can see the Republicans doing that, and being punished by the voters at the ballot box in 2014 and 2016, because we’ll always have our liberal gimme, gimme, gimme crowd, but if the GOP can put the brakes on wild overspending for just a couple of years, maybe the Democrats can blame it all on the mean ol’ Republicans but keep most of the reduced government the Republicans won, to keep the budget in check.

  10. Editor says:
    May 14, 2012 at 20:56

    Yorkshire wrote:
    In Fast Eddie Rendell’s last year as Governor, he wanted to raise taxes and spending. Well, he is a democrat afterall. But the Republican majority in the House and Senate of PA gave Eddie a big fat NO WAY. Of course he pouted, but in the end signed a balanced budget with NO TAX increase. It can be done, if you have the will power to do it.

    That’s just it: our Democratic friends don’t have the willpower to do it. They see so many good things that government does.

    The PA Legislator did what was effective for all Pennsylvanians and in their best interest. Whereas, the Democrats that had the full US Congress picked winners and losers. In doing so, the US has a lopsided income tax that makes the rich the losers, and the poor, winners. In PA, it’s Constitution only allows for a flat tax. (Everytime a progressive tax was brought up, it was shot down) So, at least the burden is shared by all, instead of the few.

  11. Mr Editor,

    let us revisit what you said about the UK

    a year ago in response to PiaToR:

    PiaToR: “So tell us, Dana – two years ago, Britain instituted austerity measures of the sort you’re advocating for the US. How did that work out for them?”

    Dana: “Quite well, actually. Oh, they’re going through some pain now, and, as The New York Times noted, “spending cuts have not yet really begun.”. But once the pain has been adjusted to, the economy will adjust, and recover, and Her Majesty’s subjects will have less debt to repay.”

    How did that work out Mr Editor/Dana, a year later, like now?

    Wikipedia:

    “The UK economy grew by 0.4% in the first three months of 2011, reducing the risk of a double-dip recession. Q2 brought zero growth and was followed by growth of 0.6% in Q3.[66] In the first three quarters of 2011 the UK’s economy grew by 1.0%.[67] Q4, however, saw the economy shrink by 0.3%, a revision down from earlier estimates of a contraction of 0.2%.[68]. In Q1 of 2012, the UK economy entered a double-dip recession after a decline in GDP of 0.2%.[69]“

    Is this what you wish for our own country, Mr Editor?

    And here’s more:

    “The UK economy has returned to recession, after shrinking by 0.2% in the first three months of 2012. A sharp fall in construction output was behind the surprise contraction, the Office for National Statistics said. A recession is defined as two consecutive quarters of contraction. The economy shrank by 0.3% in the fourth quarter of 2011. BBC economics editor Stephanie Flanders says it “adds to the picture that the economy is bumping along the bottom”. She said economic output was slightly smaller now than it was in the autumn of 2010.”

    See next post for the link.

    You and your extremist colleagues want the same for our country. Please, this makes no sense whatsoever, because it will likely cause a double dip recession, just like happened in the UK! Good thinking!!!

  12. Here is the link for the last quote, this from the UK Office of National Statistics.

    PS: Unfortunately, the commenter is limited to only one link, otherwise moderation. Moreover, the commenter is not permitted to post images, like tables, graphs, photos, thus giving an advantage to the authors, most of whom are on the extreme right. Moreover, in violation of your acolades for the spirit of free speech, Mr Hitchcock adamantly violates this spirit. It does show how weak kneed he is. So much for a level playing field! This does not apply so much to me, since you have graciously shared your bandwidth with me. Thank you for that!

  13. ” So, at least the burden is shared by all, instead of the few.”

    No, Yorkshire, with a flat tax, the burden is more on the lower income folks, who cannot afford the tax as well as wealthier individuals, which is why the Federal income tax has been progressive, for many, many decades. How is it that you insist on being so hard on yourself, assuming that your income is in the middle income arena?

  14. “There are many companies which offer four ten-hour day workweeks, giving employees three-day weekends; in the Pyrite State, that would mean 32 hours of regular time and eight hours of overtime, so no one will do that.”

    I’m not sure of the origin of your information, Mr Editor, but you need to see this: Employees in CA can work a 4×10 work week and still not get paid overtime.

  15. Wagonwheel wrote:

    Dana: “Quite well, actually. Oh, they’re going through some pain now, and, as The New York Times noted, “spending cuts have not yet really begun.”. But once the pain has been adjusted to, the economy will adjust, and recover, and Her Majesty’s subjects will have less debt to repay.”

    How did that work out Mr Editor/Dana, a year later, like now?

    It’s not over, but it is still the only choice.

    You write as though there is some painless way out of the mess in which we have created for ourselves, but no, there isn’t. We have borrowed and borrowed and borrowed so that we could spend far more than we earn, far more than we produce. If you don’t want to pay for the overspending of the past, just when do you want to pay for it?

    Of course, the answer is taht you don’t ever want to pay for it. You are supporting the re-election of President Obama, but his last budget proposal forecasts deficits bigger than any run by any other President, as far into the future as the eye can see, and federal spending at levels far above anything we have ever done, outside of World war II. You have said yourself that a national debt of 120% of GDP is “unsustainable,” but we’ve already hit 100% and you are supporting policies which head right up to debt levels you called unsustainable.

    The United States enjoys some advantages that Greece and Italy and Spain do not, which is why we have a chance, a chance, mind you, to avoid what has happened to them, to get our debt under control and start paying it down. But the longer we wait, the longer we have a President who doesn’t even have any plans to address the long-term debt crisis, as his own Secretary of the Treasury admitted, the more painful it will be, and we might just get to the stage that the Greeks have reached.

    Heck, you don’t even object to austerity measures, as long as they are aimed for the goals you like; you have supported increasing costs on all of the American people without any concomitant increase in benefits other than the pursuit of some greenhouse gas reduction, in slavish pursuit of some cockamamie global warming theory, but when it comes to something we absolutely know will happen, economic collapse, why you don’t want to address that at all.

  16. Moreover, the commenter is not permitted to post images, like tables, graphs, photos, thus giving an advantage to the authors, most of whom are on the extreme right. Moreover, in violation of your acolades for the spirit of free speech, Mr Hitchcock adamantly violates this spirit.

    You have your own blog on which to post such, SINP. You’ve demonstrated you are totally untrustworthy in this forum; why in the world would anyone in charge here grant you such a privilege? Once again you resort to your Occupy “gimme this because I want it” attitude. And, once again, you prove you know absolutely nothing about free speech.

  17. Mr Editor, when are you going to address the experiences of the UK, Germany, and France wrt their implementations of austerity? The hard fact is that this has caused their economies to shrink, jobs to be lost, and their debt to increase! THIS IS NOT WORKING!!!

    Please explain to me why austerity only, which is what you have continuously proposed, would be wise for us to do?

    Last September, President Obama put forward a deficit/debt reduction program which would cut the debt by more than $3 trillion in ten years through a combination of entitlement cuts, tax increases, and reductions in military spending. This is the phase out stimulus/phase in spending cuts/phase in tax increases which I have alluded to on here in the past. Mark Thoma of CBS Money Watch put it this way last September:

    “We certainly have a long-run deficit problem to address, the stimulus package must be paid for at some point, and if Congress agrees to a job creation program that must be paid for as well. So we do need more revenue — we aren’t gong to close the long-run budget gap with spending cuts alone. But presently, the economic outlook is for a very slow return to more normal conditions, one that extends through 2013 and beyond. Thus, in the short-run getting the economy going again is the most important goal and tax increases, particularly increases on middle and lower class households, work against the recovery.

    If we had a functional Congress, we would do what we can to get the economy going again in the short-run, and at the same time commit to a credible and equitable long-run deficit reduction plan. That’s essentially what Obama is calling for. But Congress is largely dysfunctional right now, and the only way to get tax increases on the wealthy will likely be to allow the Bush tax increases to expire across the board. The last time this happened, i.e. when Obama had to choose between extending the cuts for everyone, or ending them for everyone, he chose to extend them rather than risk slowing the recovery. Essentially, the Republicans used the threat of harming the economy to demand that the tax cuts for the wealthy be extended, and Obama gave in to their demands. This time, however, Obama has threatened to veto any legislation that does not ask wealthy households to share the burden of debt reduction and pay more in taxes. Will he carry through?

    I suspect this time may be different, and the economy will suffer for it, but Republicans haven’t given the president much choice. At some point the president has to take a stand and insist that deficit reduction be equitable — that the wealthy pay their share. But I am not at all pleased that the economy and the jobless will have to pay the price of this political battle.”

    But because of the Republicans, we don’t have a functional Congress, so this problem keeps being kicked down the road, hoping for an Obama defeat in 2012, as has been a four year top priority for Senator McConnell and his Republican Party. And this dysfunction is good for America? Please!

    Again, the European experience with austerity only dictates against our following the same path. And btw, debt at 120% of GDP turned out to be sustainable for us in the 1940′s, so at 100% we’re OK for the near term.

    Let us get moving on the Obama plan for keeping the economy growing positively while beginning to phase in spending cuts. We don’t have any more time to waste on Congressional dysfunction!

    PS: Note well, Republicans have to tear up their ridiculous Norquist “no tax increase” pledge, which is unworkable given the current state of our fiscal crisis! We must break out of this self-imposed, stupid, ideological, dysfunctional deep freeze!!

  18. “Lame talking points lies:”

    You deny that Senator McConnell, at the outset of President Obama’s term in office, stated clearly that the top priority of the Republican Party is to make President Obama a one term President? Who is the liar here, koolo?

    For your perusal, here is the record of President Obama’s term to date, which he is running on. What is the record of your party which candidate Romney is running on, koolo? A dysfunctional party has no record of accomplishment, by definition!

  19. You deny that Senator McConnell, at the outset of President Obama’s term in office, stated clearly that the top priority of the Republican Party is to make President Obama a one term President? Who is the liar here, koolo?

    As has been pointed out here numerous times, you are delusional if you do not think the opposition party’s aim is ever NOT to make the new president a one-termer. Then again, you have proven yourself just that, over and over and over again, so that’s not surprising in the least.

    What is the record of your party which candidate Romney is running on, koolo? A dysfunctional party has no record of accomplishment, by definition!

    All Romney has to do is run on the “accomplishments” of Obama and he will do just fine.

    As for your last bit of nonsense, I refer you to my previous link.

  20. Today, Perry’s message from the dark side is that Barack Obama is running on his record. Which is not only an obvious absurdity, and likely the stupidest statement he’s made here to date (although the competition for that dubious prize is fierce), it’s also the exact opposite of the truth, which unfortunately is a frequent feature of his comments.

    Perry’s efforts to whitewash Obama’s unrelieved record of failures are as laughable as they are sad, and they share more than a chance relationship to Baghdad Bob’s famous head-in-the-sand performances, both are demonstrable false and both are desperate attempts to keep a corrupt authoritarian in power.

    Which is exactly why Barack Obama is running away from his record as fast as he can, and so are most of the Democrats who must face the voters in November.

    Iran’s bloodthirsty dictator brought his country to the brink of disaster, and Barack Obama has nearly accomplished the same fate for America. And, both arrogant overlords, standing on the precipice of national ruin, adopted the same preposterous pretence, as if the cold reality of their misrule wasn’t visible just over their left shoulder.

  21. “As has been pointed out here numerous times, you are delusional if you do not think the opposition party’s aim is ever NOT to make the new president a one-termer. Then again, you have proven yourself just that, over and over and over again, so that’s not surprising in the least.”

    You are spinning again, koolo, along with all your other bullcrap! Now pay attention to the English expression used here, koolo, in the form of two questions:

    “You deny that Senator McConnell, at the outset of President Obama’s term in office, stated clearly that the top priority of the Republican Party is to make President Obama a one term President? Who is the liar here, koolo?”

    Naturally, you ducked both questions. You know well that McConnell stated what I wrote. Why did you choose to spin instead of answering the questions, koolo?

    And regarding your previous link, check out this link.

    In the meantime, I look forward to your answers to the two questions I asked.

  22. Ropelight, your prose is equivalent to a vacuum without even a single fact to support your views. How far do you think this would get you in a formal debate?

    Did you watch the video I posted, which lists several key accomplishments in the Obama record to date?

  23. Naturally, you ducked both questions. You know well that McConnell stated what I wrote. Why did you choose to spin instead of answering the questions, koolo?

    Again for the slow — you’re acting as if what McConnell is in any way out of the ordinary. It is not. You’re acting like your silly self here as usual, just like you now turn a blind eye to Obama’s “shredding of the Constitution” when back when Bush was still in office you complained about such on a daily basis.

    You’re a total joke, SINP.

  24. How far do you think this would get you in a formal debate?

    Look who’s talking. I can hear the collective groans of the audience when you, for the 15th time, ask for a citation for something that has already been provided. Then you’d be booed out of the auditorium as the joke that you are.

  25. Let me explain something to you, Perry. And let me use the words of an elite academic, the words of a Department Head at Harvard. “Larry Krugman is a Nobel Prize winning fraud.” We have no respect for Krugman because he’s a fraud, a radical Leftist sycophant, and a delusional, brainwashed worshipper of the defrocked and disproven snake-oil salesman Meynard Keynes. Quoting Krugman amongst us wiser people than you will get you as far as quoting Dr Seuss at a Louisa May Alcott convention.

  26. Now koolo, that’s three questions which you have not answered. You must be afraid of something.

    Mr Hitchcock, it’s Paul Krugman, but no problem except that he has been absolutely right most of the time, as even admitted by the Republican Right Here is what Henry Blodget wrote:

    “Few economists have been more correct about the economic crisis of the last several years than the proudly liberal Paul Krugman.

    Krugman spotted the “liquidity trap” early on (since the problem with the economy was too much debt, cutting rates and creating easier money would not get us out of it).

    Krugman shot down the hyperventilation about a coming hyper-inflation, arguing that the global labor glut would prevent easy credit from inflating wages.

    Krugman quickly pronounced the Obama Administration’s stimulus as far too small and said it would not get the job done.

    Krugman scoffed at the idea that interest rates were about to skyrocket as our creditors decided en masse that we were so fiscally irresponsible that they couldn’t possibly lend us any more money.

    Krugman has been wrong about some things, but he has been right on all those counts.

    [And in the same article, David Frum said this:

    "Imagine, if you will, someone who read only the Wall Street Journal editorial page between 2000 and 2011, and someone in the same period who read only the collected columns of Paul Krugman. Which reader would have been better informed about the realities of the current economic crisis? The answer, I think, should give us pause. Can it be that our enemies [e.g. Paul Krugman] were right?

    ]

    Will Frum be ostracized for that remark? After all, Paul Krugman is supposed to be Public Enemy No. 1.

    Or will more Republicans begin to agree that, although government spending does indeed need to be cut eventually, and the debt problem does need to be addressed, suddenly chopping, say, $1 trillion of government spending next year is not the best way to get ourselves out of this mess?”

    I assume that Mr Hitchcock is paying attention, and hope our Editor is as well! But forget koolo, who isn’t expected to be able to comprehend nuance!

  27. But forget koolo, who isn’t expected to be able to comprehend nuance!

    Or SINP, who cannot comprehend this planet’s English.

  28. The polls over multiple years have shown grass-roots Conservatives (the Republican base) have declared the Republican Ruling Class (that would be those Republicans of power in DC) to be more Liberal than and out of touch with the grass-roots. Those same polls, over those same years, provided overwhelming evidence that political Independents believe the same, while Liberals are under the delusion that Republicans in DC represent the Republican base.

    Do you know what a delusion is, Perry? Or are you so far gone that you cannot even fathom the definition of delusion? And don’t bother damanding I provide you a citation. And don’t bother giving me the false dichotomy fallacy you always use in your lie-filled propagandastic attack against me. (I know, it’s futile telling you not to, you’re going to, anyway. It’s who you are, diseased and lie-filled and all.)

    Frum is not a Conservative. All Conservatives reject him and mock him. But that’s likely too nuanced for you. You believe a self-proclaimed Republican (who is rejected by Conservative society) is actually representative of Conservatives. You believe a lie. In fact, you believe a myriad of lies, and push them, as shown by 4 or more years of your online activities.

    By the way, Keynesian economics has been proven to be fatally flawed from the moment Keynes said “Hey! I have an idea!”. Those who espouse Keynesianism become Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain, California, Illinois etc, etc, etc. But those who reject Keynes already have a leg up on all Democrats — and 500 percent more brain cells and dendrites than their Socialist enemies of the US, like Obama, the Perry who writes here, Frances Fox Piven.

  29. Seriously though, Hitch, when it comes to the topic of poetry, I can hear the round sounds of sweet music, but try as I might I just can’t sing in tune.

    I count myself fortunate to know the real thing when I hear it, and if that’s all there is, well, it’s enough, and I’m OK with that.

    Incidently, Coleridge’s words first opened by ears:

    The fair breeze blew, the white foam flew,
    The furrow followed free;
    We were the first that ever burst
    Into that silent sea.

    Down dropped the breeze, the sails did drop,
    ‘Twas sad as sad could be;
    And we did speak only to break
    The silence of the sea.

    All in a hot and copper sky,
    The bloody sun, at noon,
    Right up above the mast did stand,
    No bigger than the moon.

    Day after day, day after day,
    We struck, nor breath nor motion;
    As idle as a painted ship
    Upon a painted ocean.

    Water, water, every where,
    And all the boards did shrink;
    Water, water, every where,
    Nor any drop to drink….

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