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Open mike 08/08/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 8th, 2011 - 84 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

84 comments on “Open mike 08/08/2011 ”

  1. Wall street loves junk. AAA ratings are only good if you want a steady healthy economy but the Wall street banksters don’t care about that. They want bonuses and big bucks. This is what Max Keiser has to say about the down grading of the US.

    • NZX down 3.33% in the first couple of hours.

      Edit: make that 3.99%

      Edit: 5.94% and dropping like a stone. Scary …

      • travellerev 1.1.1

        Only if you still believe that real wealth is created on the NASDAQ, Dow Jones and other stock markets and you still believed you had a chance.

        For those of us with a veggie garden it’s neither here nor there. Just paper and digi shit crumbling and the idiots trading in it getting their comeuppance.

        I bet John Key got out pretty smartly after he met with Geithner and Bernanke when he visited the US on “our” behalf.

        • ropata 1.1.1.1

          From http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/nz-shares-slide-opening-db-98588

          The New Zealand sharemarket held its morning losses as attention turned to the Australian equities market, which was down 2.2% shortly after opening.

          At 12.30pm local time the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 was 89 points lower (down 2.2%) at 4020 following the US credit rating downgrade over the weekend.

          The All Ordinaries index fell 93.6 points, or 2.25%, to 4,076.1.

          The NZX-50 recovered slightly to be down 88 points, or 2.7%, at 3189, having plunged as much as 3.3% on opening.

          The drop followed a 3% fall on Friday in the NZX-50’s worst day of trading in more than two years.

          Down Down Down Down

          \
          \
          \
          \
          \
          \
          \
          \
          \
          \
          \

          This is going to be worse than lehman. Expect the NZ sharemarket to drop 30-40% before we hit the bottom this year.

          I predict tomorrow will be worse. US will tank tonight and the NZX will follow suit. Our market is reactionary.

          SELL SELL SELL!

        • ropata 1.1.1.2

          The best visualization of US debt I have seen: http://usdebt.kleptocracy.us/

          The 114.5 Trillion dollar super-skyscraper is the amount of money the U.S. Government knows it does not have to fully fund the Medicare, Medicare Prescription Drug Program, Social Security, Military and civil servant pensions. It is the money USA knows it will not have to pay all its bills.

          If you live in USA this is also your personal credit card bill; you are responsible along with everyone else to pay this back. The citizens of USA created the U.S. Government to serve them, this is what the U.S. Government has done while serving The People.

          Bear in mind that USA and NZL have the same credit rating.

      • Snark 1.1.2

        Edit: NZX-50 is now down 88 points at 3188 – a fall of 2.69 per cent by 1pm – dead cat bouncing or not quite as bad as Mickeysavage would have us believe?

        • Vicky32 1.1.2.1

          OK, can someone please explain that all that means?! I have been listening to the BBC all day, listening to economists, and I realise I couldn’t understand a word of it…
          My son just asked – “maybe I am missing something, but can’t we just zero it all, and start from scratch?” What am I missing, what are we missing?

    • aj 1.2

      Dean Baker’s view on Standard and Poor’s

      http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/08/06-7

  2. Bored 2

    MSM are arrogant little fekkkers…apparently we are going to set a lead to the world Share markets because we open first…and they will folllow suite. Yea right.

  3. vto 3

    I see Agriculture Minister David Carter is still getting away with equating foreign investment with foreign land ownership.

    The two things are entirely different. Foreign investment can still flow into all manner of business, including farming, without having to own the land beneath. The land beneath must only be owned by the people who live on it. This applies right across the entire globe and has nothing to do with race. In fact David Carter should take note of how the Chinese deal with this issue …. go on Carter, show some intellectual honesty and tell the public why the Chinese don’t let foreigners own their land.

    • aerobubble 3.1

      collateral. debt causes repo when government is run by speculators whose ability to ignore consequences when taking profit is highly regarded. Key loves a undervalued asset, and don’t we have a country full of under valued assets! We don’t even tax capital gains because there so hard to make here, funny that, if we valued them enough to tax them we’d get better management who would have to produce better quality decisions to succeed, and so produce more not less capital gain.

      funny how the right think haiti is to be admired for its zero taxation economy.

    • marsman 3.2

      ‘intellectual’ and ‘honesty’ are foreign to the National Party.

  4. NickS 4

    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2011/08/anti-matter_in_space.php

    Awesome. Though less so if anyone figures out how to make hot dust mini bombs…

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      Love the guy’s comment at the end. No way we will use this “anti matter” for space travel (as they do in Star Trek), we’ll use it for BOMBS first mwahahahaha….actually they do that in Star Trek too 🙁

  5. More biased reporting from The Herald.  On Saturday it reported on Sam Lotu Iiga’s private member’s bill dealing with loansharks and noted Simon Power’s statement that he was inclining towards a legislative crackdown on the industry. 
     
    Support from various organisations including the Salvation Army was mentioned.
     
    The article reported that Judith Tizard had four years previously rejected a cap on interest rates that could be charged.
     
    No where in the article did it mention that Labour’s Carol Beaumont has been running an intensive campaign against predatory lending practices.  Nor is there mention that her bill the Credit Reforms (Responsible Lending) Bill was voted down by the tories last year.  The bill would have capped chargable interest rates with the cap being set by regulation.  Interestingly Carol is vying for Sam’s seat of Maungakiekie and has been getting great local support for her bill.
     
    So Mr Herald why did you not mention this?  Anyone reading the article would have thought that National is proactively working to deal with the problem yet a year ago they voted against a measure that would have made an important change.  Instead of applauding the Governments action one could have concluded that they had engaged in cynical politics of the worst kind.

    • [Oops Standard can you delete extraneous carriage returns]
      [lprent: done. I must get trac running so I can remember what I’m meant to fix…. ]

    • William Joyce 5.2

      Yup, we’ve been here before. But given the state of the MSM newsrooms these days it could be that the Herald’s journo’s where still in high school this time last year. 
      Sneaking their father’s magazines, cutting themselves shaving peach fuzz, sullenly grunting replies to questions.
       

  6. aerobubble 6

    Poor government has turned NZ into a farming economy, so what a surprise that our yokel PM accepts credit for introducing the same policies as the previous and foreign governments, too force banks to deleverage. We could do so much better, not with Key in charge though.

  7. Tigger 7

    Gotta love Michael Laws, even when he’s the victim he manages to be an ass claiming someone who knocked veneers out of his mouth ‘hit like a girl’.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10743672

    Actually you don’t gotta love him. But that doesn’t mean anyone should respond to his brand of intolerance with violence. Hope they find his attacker – free speech needs to be free of violent consequences or else we’re all in the crapper.

    • Morrissey 7.1

      Laws whines: “It was entirely unprovoked and I had neither exchanged words nor looks with this individual.”

      Of course, it was provoked. The assailant would have been provoked by any number of offensive, racist utterances with which Laws has polluted the airwaves.

      Maybe the assailant has a handicapped child—Laws frequently makes demeaning comments about handicapped children.

      Maybe the assailant has had a sick relative die in a hospice—Laws calls hospices “evil”, and believes all very sick people want to kill themselves.

      The only wonder is that it doesn’t happen to Laws every day.

      • TightyRighty 7.1.1

        and who says the commentary of the left is never violent?

        • Ianupnorth 7.1.1.1

          Nobody I know.

        • felix 7.1.1.2

          Oh ffs Tighty, I know you’re dense but come on. I wonder why Laws doesn’t get bashed and spat on regularly too.

          Doesn’t mean I think it should happen.

          Is that simple enough for you to follow, you terribly slow simpleton?

        • Morrissey 7.1.1.3

          One “TightyRighty” is just a tad bewildered:

          who says the commentary of the left is never violent?

          I said it’s a wonder it doesn’t happen to Laws more often, not that I think it should happen.

    • millsy 7.2

      Laws is a bit rich to call his attacker a coward, given that he spends his days sitting in his warm studio slagging off every minority under the sun.

      I would love him to go to a state housing estate and tell the people there that they should be sterilised.

        • idlegus 7.2.1.1

          well, mike laws is always going on about taking responsibilty of your own actions, what does he think spouting all that hate crap is going to bring him? must have been a big punch i reckon, though violence does suck.

  8. tc 8

    Substitute ‘NZ Herald’ for ‘National Party Election campaign’ and you’re onto it. The nats’ behaviour on tossing out Beaumont’s private bill for this is typical and oh so easy with the MSM in your pocket.

    ‘cynical politics of the worst kind…’ yup it’s national, you aint seen nothing yet.

  9. Morrissey 9

    Two ways to handle the Murdoch press

    Remember the Murdoch empire? How it seemed to strike fear into the hearts of politicians and anyone else who it chose to target?

    1. Here’s a reminder of the power that the Murdoch paper The Australian held over Canberra’s finest last year. Although the ABC Mediawatch programme does a competent job of exposing and commenting on the shamelessly partisan coverage by the Murdoch paper, the default mode seems to be wounded amusement. Rather than anger, the ABC presenter thinks urbanity is enough. Unlike anyone in the ABC or the Labor Party, Greens Senator Bob Brown appears to actually possess a spine…
    http://www.abc.net.au/mediawatch/transcripts/s3010433.htm

    2. Now look at someone who has the courage and the clarity of mind to actually CONFRONT one of Murdoch’s hitmen….

    • Tigger 9.1

      By the way, SKY (40% owned by Murdoch) is eyeing Mediaworks. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10743416 SKY has had their eye on Mediaworks for a long time. Anyone fancy Murdoch getting hold of a significant broadcast news outlet here in NZ?

      • Morrissey 9.1.1

        SKY (40% owned by Murdoch) is eyeing Mediaworks.

        Good God! That’s truly awe-inspiring news.

        Murdoch + Mediaworks = Considerable Evil.

        • travellerev 9.1.1.1

          I wonder how much John charges for selling off whatever semblance of independent media coverage we still have.

        • grumpy 9.1.1.2

          John Campbell – gone by lunchtime???????

          • Vicky32 9.1.1.2.1

            John Campbell – gone by lunchtime???????

            Seriously, I think he’d be no loss! Campbell has traded for too long on being the “excitable left wing boy” he claimed to be in the SST in the 90s, when he’s really been no such thing, for a long time!
            I have believed (wrongly as it turns out) that Mediaworks was already Murdoch-owned. What does that say about it?

        • mik e 9.1.1.3

          joyce murdoch

  10. This might be of interest here: Asset sale plan gets tick from academic

    An academic who has studied thousands of privatisations of state assets around the world says the Government is going about its “mixed ownership” plan in the right way.

    William Megginson, professor at the University of Oklahoma, said New Zealand’s proposed partial privatisation programme was ambitious.

    “They seem to be doing it right, getting the mandate and doing it through share issues,” he said.

    “In most countries privatisation is a dirty word, it’s not a popular programme. The thing is that the economic evidence is that it does work.”

    • aj 10.1

      Work for who? the economic evidence in this country is that it doesn’t work for small shareholders or the taxpayers in general

    • I wonder how much John paid him!

    • Draco T Bastard 10.3

      The thing is that the economic evidence is that it does work

      No, the evidence is that the rich get richer from state asset sales and everyone else gets poorer. This is economic evidence that it doesn’t work.

      • aerobubble 10.3.1

        Money is ‘future value’ and the invisible hands works better the more people are active economically. So the perverse outcome is wealth falls into fewer and fewer hands,
        \funnelled to them by a speculator class who see only the short-term, that has created
        massive amounts of money.

        Money now that could never be repaid with current assets, as those assets are finite, and much
        wealth has been lost turning skill artisans into interchangeable throwable workers.

        After a few years of oil price hitting $400 dollars and Energy companies run down by the
        free market, you can be sure a government will nationalize them in short order.

    • Ianupnorth 10.4

      The University of Oklahoma? Wouldn’t say a mid western US university ranked at below 400 in the world rankings would  have any degree of credibility.
      Consider the fact that he is a professor in finance banking and economics – he has a vested interest; also http://www.privatizationbarometer.net his little side project.

      Oh, and look who he is visiting – http://www.nzbr.org.nz/Events/CEO+Forums.html

      Dr Megginson has served as a privatisation consultant for the New York Stock Exchange, the OECD, the IMF, the World Federation of Exchanges, and the World Bank.

      About as impartial as a military consultant saying guns keep people safe!

      FFS I have degrees from two in the top 100 and worked as an academic at one in the top 100 for 6 years – shall I tell everyone what I believe works and expect governments and Joe Public to accept this without question?

    • Bored 10.5

      Pete George….teach you a little trick. When you see people like William Megginson mysteriously appear from Oklahoma you do a quick Google and check out their credentials.

      Nice credentials (except having known lots of people who have gained PhDs that does not impress me in the slightest), William is always on one side of the ledger. This lad is a pro-privatiser, always. Which would indicate to me that doubt is not in his mind in the slightest, the truest test of an ideologue.

      Next juicy little Google on Billy Boy the privatiser….Roger Kerr is advertising him on his site. QED

      • Pete George 10.5.1

        ….teach you a little trick. When you see people like William Megginson mysteriously appear from Oklahoma you do a quick Google and check out their credentials.

        Yeah, I know, I did that.

        • Bored 10.5.1.1

          Jeez Pete, cant you recognise a snake oil salesman when you see one. Your mother probably warned you about these people, you should have listened to her.

          • Colonial Viper 10.5.1.1.1

            Dear PG

            I have a $15M oil fortune sitting in an account in Nairobi. Unfortunately I lack the the telegraphic transfer fee of .1% to access it.

            If you would be kind enough to forward to my bank account the $15,000 fee I will be able to receive that $15M from Nairobi, immediately.

            For your assistance once these funds clear I would gladly refund you your original $15,000 and pay you an additional $15,000 commission.

            In 72 hours time I will be able to deposit the full $30,000 with you.

            Thank you for your consideration.

            [lprent: Please leave the Nigerian scam to the e-mail. I still get variants of this escaping spam filters – so I guess there are still suckers. ]

    • mik e 10.6

      Yeah right if the assets are sold for there real value an not 1/2 price like Key English are promoting.A country like Singapore doesn’t do it yet has 10 times our economic growth.PG go back to your eco comics .

    • ropata 10.7

      “the economic evidence is that it does work”
      For a small number of wealthy shareholders.
      Later on it doesn’t work so well for the overcharged citizenry who end up bailing out a crumbling SOE that’s been asset stripped and hollowed out by endless cuts to wages, services, investment.

  11. Draco T Bastard 11

    The Spoilsmen: How Congress Corrupted Patent Reform

    Today, the patent bill looks like a scorecard tallying points for powerful corporations: a win for pharmaceutical companies whose monopolies are driving up Medicare costs; a win for Wall Street’s battle against check-processing patents; a loss for tech giants who had hoped to curb costly lawsuits.

    Left out of the tally is the public, even as the economic landscape for American families grows darker. Historian Richard Hofstadter famously observed that Congress during the Gilded Age busied itself with dividing the nation’s spoils among the rich and powerful. But as the current patent struggle suggests, the spoilsmen are back and Washington is once again an arbiter of who lands the lucre.

    Shouldn’t be surprised I suppose. Today government is of the people, by the rich for the rich and it ain’t getting any better.

    • queenstfarmer 11.1

      What a long article!

      I just hope that our MPs don’t fold like a cheap suit on the proposal to ban software patents. It’s in the Bill, we just need them to keep it there.

  12. Snark 12

    More biased under-researched repeating from the MSM:

    Phil Goff demands action over navy misbehaviour but can’t remember the six army personnel brought back from Afghanistan on Goff’s watch for smoking hashish…

    … or the colonel who was courtmartialled on Goff’s watch for abusing duty free privileges …

    • lprent 12.1

      I think that you have just screwed up your own point by proving that action did happen on Phil Goffs watch?

      Mind you, it is rather hard to figure out what your frogging point actually is. Perhaps you should suing yourself for intellectual laziness?

      • Joe Bloggs 12.1.1

        I think the shoe’s on the other foot – Snark has screwed up Goff’s point somewhat

        Goff told the Herald he could recall nothing similar during his tenure as Defence Minister between 2005 and 2008.

        However six army personnel were pulled out of Afghanistan on Goff’s watch for smoking hashish.

        Then there was Colonel Sel­wyn Heaton, who bought 100 bot­tles of gin, rum, vodka, whiskey, liqueur and wine and more than 200 pack­ets of cig­a­rettes for a friend just three weeks before his post­ing was due to end in 2006. Heaton pled guilty at a court mar­tial at Tren­tham to two charges of bring­ing dis­credit to the army.

        Here’s a few more crimes and misdemeanours that went down on Goff’s watch : http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/338332

        Goff might not have recalled these events but that’s not to say they never happened.

        Sounds a bit like an SIS briefing…

  13. Bored 13

    Gotta love Robert Jensen. He in a column mentioned the only 3 revolutions that ever counted…the agricultural, the industrial and now the delusional revolution.

    The delusional revolution is my term for the development of sophisticated propaganda techniques in the 20th century (especially a highly emotive, image-based advertising/marketing system) that have produced in the bulk of the population (especially in First World societies) a distinctly delusional state of being. Although any person or group can employ these techniques, wealthy individuals and corporations — and their representatives in government — take advantage of their disproportionate share of resources to flood the culture with their stories that reinforce their dominance. Journalism and education, idealized as spaces for rationally based truth-telling, sometimes provide a counter to those propaganda systems, but just as often are co-opted by the powerful forces behind them.

    A good read, love the idea that a political revolution is totaly pointless in our current predicament, the status quo will collapse into inneffectivenes anyway as it tries to address issues that are clearly outside of its comprehension.

    http://energybulletin.net/stories/2011-08-07/nature-bats-last-notes-revolution-and-resistance-revelation-and-redemption

  14. ROFL,

    Alan Greenspan has the problem to the debt crisis: Crisis? What crisis.

    We just print more money!!!

    • Ianupnorth 14.1

      Problem is there is no money to buy the paper or run the presses.

      • Bored 14.1.1

        Isnt the printing oil based???????

        • travellerev 14.1.1.1

          Nope, it’s a scam.

          They create it out of thin air and you borrow it and pay interest with your hard slog.
          “If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the people of all property until their children wake up homeless on the continent their Fathers conquered…I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies… The issuing power should be taken from the banks and restored to the people, to whom it properly belongs.” Thomas Jefferson.

      • Colonial Viper 14.1.2

        Problem is there is no money to buy the paper or run the presses.

        heh that would be funny

        except the (privately owned) Federal Reserve simply tap the number into a keyboard and electronically credit their own bank account with whatever they choose. An extra $10B, $100B, $1,000B.

        Just like that. Takes less than a second.

        By the way, its just as well they don’t physically print these quantities of cash that often

        http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/printing-error-produces-a-billion-unusable-100-bills-2154917.html

    • Pascal's bookie 14.2

      It’s a pretty wry ROFL though. Greenspan, and plenty of others, are playing a snakey game here.

      The downgrade was unusual in that it wasn’t about the US’s ability to pay. Greenspan is right in that if the worst comes to the worse the US can print the money. There is no way that they ‘cannot’ pay the debt, or at least, they are a loooooooong way from being close to a ‘cannot’ pay scenario.

      Where they are at though, is close to a ‘won’t pay’ scenario. The risk S&P sees is not economic, it’s political. They point out the debt ceiling argument, and the fact that the GOP flat out refuses to raise taxes, and note that the cuts won’t be anywhere near enough. Greenspans mircale moves won’t happen either, the GOP won’t let them.

      What S&P said was basically. If you don’t raise taxes, you won’t be able to pay in the medium term, and we think your political situation is fucked to the point that you won’t raise taxes. You won’t even let the Bush tax cuts expire, which would all but fix the problem all by itself. Ergo, you don’t deserve AAA.

      • Colonial Viper 14.2.1

        Disagree mildly on just a few of your points.

        1) The US AAA rating should have been downgraded at least a year ago when it became obvious that money printing was going to continue unabated. Paying your debt with ever devaluing freshly printed inflationary scrip is considered a technical default in many places.

        Technically, the US should have lost its AAA rating when it closed the USD gold window in the 1960’s. That was a true default.

        2) US money printing fails even more badly as a solution if the USD loses its status as the reserve currency of the world. This won’t happen in the next 12 months, but the erosion is already obvious. People are trying to trade and store value in anything but the USD.

        3) 10 year plus to 30 year treasuries. Can anyone realistically see a US Govt which is spending something like US$3.5T this year but only collecting US$2.2T in tax receipts getting on top of this situation in order to make good on 10 year plus treasuries.

        Prediction: blood bath on Wall St this week. They may have a bit of a spike up tomorrow but it will be very very temporary.

  15. Joe Bloggs 15

    What the heck’s happened to Trevor Mallard?

    Is the pressure getting to him?

    I sure hope he’s got his feelers out in the job market ‘cos his days as cheer leader for the Labour Party would have to be numbered after that plagiarism stunt he pulled across on Red Alert today !

    • andy (the other one) 15.1

      Plagiarism???

      Maybe he just used google for 2 seconds and used this website:

      http://www.fakeiphonetext.com/

      or downloaded the app here:

      http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/fake-sms-text-conversation/id350199908?mt=8

      to take the piss of the crappy jokes Whaleoil does on his site, which are not original at all (admittedly they were not that funny) . Whale copied the idea from others. Its called a meme.

      Here is one I prepared earlier “let me google that for you” because your to lazy or stupid to check yourself.

      http://lmgtfy.com/?q=meme

      • Joe Bloggs 15.1.1

        the difference is that Cameron Slater is an unemployed blogger and I’m a nobody – Trev is a front bench parliamentarian and shadow leader of the house with serious aspirations to get his party back into power.

        I’m sure that you’re neither too lazy nor too stupid to spot the difference

        Cringe-making politics indeed!

        • andy (the other one) 15.1.1.1

          Two dickheads (whale and duck) blogging….not much difference!

          Look at John key doing the audition for Letterman, sad…

          Look at Mallard trying to be funny on a blog, sad…

          not much difference. I thought the stuff blog was kind of lame too. Find someone over the age of 20 that doesn’t know that our Tev can be a bit of a tool sometimes.

          Stop plagiarising me…

    • felix 15.2

      “Plagiarism” is MY word. I made it up. Don’t fucking use it again, Bloggs, you’re so unoriginal.

  16. gnomic 16

    May I hope to see a post on the Standard shredding a quite extraordinary article on Stuff by Tracy Watkins which appeared to be a largely verbatim session of puffery by the Prime Minister explaining how he and his cohorts have saved NZ from Global Financial Crisis II by their amazing sagacity and foresight. One grows accustomed to the fourth estate acting as cheerleaders for the smiley wavy one, but even by the prevailing low standards this was pathetic.Perhaps the next step is for commentary to consist of National Party press releases. Yes, no cause for concern, John and Bill have everything under control.

  17. prism 17

    On Radionz this morning they were talking to Benjamin Friedman, USA economist and he said when replying to a question that he wasn’t a political economist. He had a go at the question though. To me that answer is funny because economists seem to know no boundaries in applying their wisdom to any human problem. For instance they have one about human generosity (it’s actually self-serving for one’s own satisfaction and aggrandisement) etc.
    Wikipedia rundown for anyone interested. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benjamin_M._Friedman
    I wondered if he was related to the late Milton Friedman but apparently no.

    I refreshed myself on Milton’s career and found that he was an advisor to Ronald Reagan. Friedman was against government spending yet we know that while Reagan was President overall government spending went up.
    Link for Milton – http://www.grandfather-economic-report.com/friedman.htm
    Reagan’s failure to truly reduce taxes for most Americans was mirrored by a failure to restrain government spending. Reagan ran for office in 1980 as a harsh critic of “tax and spend” liberalism, vowing as president to shrink the size of the government by slashing federal spending. Once in office, however, Reagan found it impossible to deliver on his promises. The largest chunk of the federal budget went to pay for Social Security and Medicare, which provide retirement income and health care for the elderly, and which are the two most popular government social programs in American history. While Reagan had long criticized both, he found it politically impossible to dismantle them.
    After Social Security and Medicare, the next largest government expense was the military—and Reagan, a staunch Cold Warrior, never considered cutting defense spending and instead increased it substantially. “Defense is not a budget item,” he told planners at the Pentagon. “You spend what you need.”

    Another google heading – It only looks different: Both parties love big government | McClatchy http://www.mcclatchydc.com/…/it-only-looks-different-both-... – United States – Cached
    5 Mar 2009 – In his eight years, Republican Ronald Reagan increased government spending by 69 percent, led by a 92 percent increase in defense spending .

    I guess there is a direct line from this thinking to the free market kerfuffle we have today. Still being blamed on government though.

  18. prism 18

    Link for quote re Reagan as President in italics http://www.shmoop.com/reagan-era/economy.html
    Can’t edit when under 1 minute remaining.

  19. The Voice of Reason 19

    I see that the Tottenham riots sparked by a dodgy police shooting were followed by another night of opportunist looting completely unrelated to the issue in Brixton and elsewhere. Why don’t we have more riots here, I wonder? 
     
    Too white, maybe?
     
    RIP Strummer, a decade dead and still more relevant than a million Bonos.
     
     
     
     

    • rosy 19.1

      Straw and camel’s back come to mind. Anyways, I just read the the bullet that was lodged in a police radio (the bullet that sparked the shooting of the young man, that sparked the riots) appears to be police issue.

    • Herodotus 19.2

      There is an independent police enquiry to take place to ascertain the cause. The police are saying they were shot at, then followed a peaceful march that was hijacked by thugs see the looting and burning that followed. That is the problem with well organized protests they are open to being hijacked. Interesting following news directly as opposed from a nzpa type of summary – same with events in Norway. Vastly different to what gets reported in nz

    • Ianupnorth 19.3

      Joe was a legend, Bono is an arse!

  20. logie97 20

    Wonder how many chrillion Stirling and US dlrs the Mr and Mrs Aldgate-Whitechapels of this world have bought in the last six months. Might see them selling them soon and making a tidy profit. It’s so nice being a Mum and Dad and having spare cash to move around the markets.

  21. Herodotus 21

    Just been watching extensive coverage of the tottenham riots from live to current. Interesting to see commentary re senior level govt all being AWOL, and the views that Britain should scale back austerity measures, at the same time that EU countries need to step theirs up not to sure of the logic there. Also that all govts need to operate under balanced budgets and more banks require bailing out (2 nd targeted in France) the more the world changes yet the same issues remain unresolved!!

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