"An era can be said to end when its basic illusions are exhausted." - Arthur Miller

Friday, July 23, 2010

Links of the Week

Economy Does Better Under Democrats
For reasons that will probably never be explained, most corporations and people seem to think the economy thrives when Republicans are in charge. This isn't actually true as numbers repeatedly and always prove. There are really no exceptions in this. Consistently, Republicans are bad for the economy. The reason is fairly straight forward. The GOP believes in unrestrained greed. The problem with that is too much greed becomes destructive, which rarely leads to healthy companies. See Enron, HP, all of Wall Street, housing scandals, lead in toys and so much more. When you allow unrestrained greed, companies will often make decisions that make the short term look good but can lead to their death in the long term. On top of that, the GOP has a pretty straight forward belief that tax cuts to the rich fix everything. Except that isn't true either. The engine of the economy isn't the rich. It’s the middle and lower classes (who are 95% of the population). The rich are getting richer thanks to GOP tax cuts but everyone else is either getting poorer or holding steady. Even raises have been stagnant now for around 10 years. The result is less disposable income which leads to a sputtering engine. People do not make spending decisions on tax cuts. They make them based on available disposable income and job security. Eight years of tax cuts under Bush has proved it doesn't work, despite the GOP promising more of the same (while not trying to pay for it). Any case read the link for more charts on why your savings and investments are better off during Democrat administrations.

New StarCraft II Trailer
Blizzard has released a new trailer that hints at some of the story that will drive the single player campaign in the game. I participated in beta and found the game to be a whole lot of fun; however my computer is old and barely could run the game. To get the full experience, you should consider playing the game with a computer that meets the recommended specs. In this case that means one that is two years old or newer (my computer is five years old).

GOP Jobs Plan - Do Nothing
To see an example of this misguided belief that tax cuts for rich fix everything, see recent statement from GOP leader Senator John Boehner. He claims that he refuses to increase the deficit and cares about jobs but when asked about the GOP's economic plans he has three points. 1) Repeal Obamacare. Problem is this would cause a $143 billion increase to the deficit and prevent the creation of 4 million new jobs (someone has to take care of all those people about to have insurance). 2) Remove cap and trade. Problem is this law doesn't even exist and assuming it passes it has the potential to create 1.7 million jobs in the new sector of "clean" energy. 3) Make Bush tax cuts permanent. Problem is these tax cuts helped add over $2 billion to the deficit, did nothing to help the economy, only benefited the rich and would add yet another $678 billion to the deficit. So the GOP plan is once again give the rich free money and hope they do something with it. Sure they didn't in the previous eight years but this time will be different. Yeah right.

Lego Wall-E
Interesting video that shows a Lego Wall-E that can move and tuck into itself just like the movie version. It is made using Lego Mindstorms.

Special Comment: Shirley Sherrod
Keith Olbermann took a brief break from his vacation to give a special comment on the Shirley Sherrod fiasco. While he did his usual odd example from history analogy, the overall thesis is correct. Basically the press and the White House screwed up in a major and inexcusable way. Fox News and Breitbart did what they always do which is spin a story into a Democrat negative. They are not and have never even tried to behave like reporters. This is a known and established fact. Yet despite that, the media ran with their story on Sherrod as fact and never questioned it. Despite the source being clearly untrustworthy. Why is that? Why did that never occur? I assume because it was a sensational story perfect for goosing the ratings but that isn't an excuse for nearly everyone across the board failing to ask for the full tape, failing to ask for an interview from the farmers she supposedly was racists against or even simply asking for her perspective. Sure after the fact all this was done, but it should have been step #2. Step #1 would have been "oh Fox is running this; we better get more info as no telling how many lies they are spinning into this mix". In the end the right thing was done. More important though, and remains unknown, is the correct lessons learned? Probably not.

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