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Who is better at economics, Leftists or my dogs?

And which group, Leftists or conservatives, truly has the best interests of the poor at heart?

Given that the tax bill is about to (hopefully) pass and the Left is in full pants-wetting mode over it, one might ask a couple questions about Leftists, and especially “Christian” Leftists:

  1. Are they qualified to opine on economic matters?
  2. Even if they were qualified to understand basic economic concepts, do they really want conservatives — and the poor! – to be successful?

I’ll answer the second question first: No.  They hate Trump and conservatives with the heat of a thousand suns and they have shown no reason to believe that they actually want to help the poor.  They could tell just by the stock market reaction just how successful this will be.   Just one example: Having a sale on taxes, so to speak, and letting corporations bring back literally trillions of dollars in profits at much lower tax rates means that we’ll reap billions in taxes that we never would have received otherwise, and that the money will be invested in the U.S.  That means lots of tax $$ and lots of jobs.  What’s not to like – unless you are an America-hating Leftist?

And if they really wanted to help poor blacks, for example, they’d  stop their open borders policies which allow illegals to take jobs and suppress the wages of remaining jobs.  They have had monopolies on education, politics, media and entertainment in inner cities for half a century and yet things keep getting worse for those residents.

A bunch of “Christian” Left drama queens got themselves arrested for an illegal protest and pretended it was because they were reading Bible verses about giving.  Right.  And the verses they read outed them for the frauds that they are, referencing, for example, how Jesus said to lay up treasures in Heaven by giving.  Yes, He said that, but no, He obviously didn’t mean that it involved petitioning Caesar to take from your neighbors by force to redistribute to others via counterproductive social programs.   He said to give your money.  Did I actually have to type that?!  Apparently so.  But wolves like Jim “the Gospel is all about wealth redistribution” Wallis pretended that Jesus really wants us to look to their government god and that the bill is bring brought by a bunch of big meanies trying to hurt the poor.  Uh, yeah, because we make so much money off of jobless poor people or something.  (This is also a good time to remind them that conservatives give more time, money and even blood than Leftists.)

The Left knows they’ll lose power, influence and votes when the tax changes actually help the poor and middle class, so why would they want that?  And before you accuse me of being cynical, keep in mind that the people most likely to cite the Matthew 25 “least of these” passage out of context aggressively advocate for taxpayer-funded abortions to the child’s first breath.  Because compassion.  And giving.  And patriarchy.  And Molech.

And did you notice how Nancy Pelosi, Cokie Roberts and other political and media Leftists have helped cover up sexual predators for decades while insisting that conservatives were waging a war on women?  Why would anyone trust them on anything?

So the answer to the second question is a resounding no.  And to answer the first question: Also no.  Here’s one of my all-time favorite posts explaining why.


Note: The message here is more important than the title indicates.  I’ll eventually share how Leftists literally fail at basic economic concepts and how that has enormous implications for every aspect of society.

I am not making this up: My dog once submitted a college test in Economics and passed.

OK, there is a little more to the story.

When my youngest daughter home-schooled her last two years of high school, the dogs would hang out with her all day.  Once when she was in the middle of an online Economics test one of them jumped on the bed, landed on the keyboard and submitted the partially completed test.  And he passed!  Fortunately, the folks at the school were good sports about the high-tech version of “the dog really ate my homework” story and re-opened the system so the that real student could complete the test (she got her usual 99% or so).

But I offer that as a segue to remind people of an extremely important fact about basic economic principles, namely that those on the Left literally fail at them.  They aren’t just a little worse than Conservatives, they fail horribly and it drives their ideology.  The details are here, but note the results of a simple eight question economics test given to those across the political spectrum (and especially note how my dog fared):

Letter grade
Very Conservative 84% B
Libertarian 83% B
Conservative 79% C+
My dog 72% C
Moderate 54% F
Liberal 41% F
Progressive/very Liberal 34% F

Got that?  Progressives / very Liberal people only get a third of the questions right.  They could double their scores and still only get a D.  But the more conservative people are the better they do, with very Conservative people achieving a solid B.

Here’s an example of one of the questions:

Consider one of the economic propositions in the December 2008 poll: “Restrictions on housing development make housing less affordable.” People were asked if they: 1) strongly agree; 2) somewhat agree; 3) somewhat disagree; 4) strongly disagree; 5) are not sure.

Basic economics acknowledges that whatever redeeming features a restriction may have, it increases the cost of production and exchange, making goods and services less affordable. There may be exceptions to the general case, but they would be atypical.

In this case, percentage of conservatives answering incorrectly was 22.3%, very conservatives 17.6% and libertarians 15.7%. But the percentage of progressive/very liberals answering incorrectly was 67.6% and liberals 60.1%. The pattern was not an anomaly.

To recap that example, 2/3 of Leftists don’t know that restrictions — regardless of their merit — always increase costs.  How can they possibly make wise economic decisions?

Do not let the handsome canine below cause you to miss the key takeaways:

  • Understanding these basic economics concepts is crucial to leading properly. Therefore, Leftists should not be in charge of government.  Or economics.  Or much of anything else.  If you can’t get the basic building blocks of society right then all you will do is create more problems.
  • As the good folks at Freaknomics will tell you, Economics isn’t just about seemingly arcane financial metrics.  It is about behavior and incentives.  If you don’t understand how the basics of human nature work then your worldview is doomed to poor decision making.
  • The Law of Unintended Consequences will bite you far worse than my dog ever would (Italian Greyhounds are amazingly friendly) but the truth is that most consequences of Leftist policies are easy to anticipate.  The “War on Poverty” is a perfect example.  It wasn’t just a colossal flop, it was a completely predictable colossal flop.  It has deeply harmed tens of millions of people. We need to undo it as quickly as possible.  Leftists don’t realize or ignore that you get more of whatever you subsidize.  They subsidized single motherhood and got lots more of it, with the inescapable crime and poverty that comes with it.
  • This issue carries over to religion as well.  It is no surprise that Leftist Christian groups do much more harm than good.  False teachers don’t understand economics any better than they do the Bible.
  • All schools should host Junior Achievement classes.  These are proven to increase graduation rates and they teach critical life skills about budgeting, economics and more.  I taught them for 12 years and was continually impressed with their program.  You don’t need a PhD in Economics to understand the most important concepts.  Give me 30 minutes with a bunch of 7th graders and I will have them more fluent in basic economic principles like supply and demand than Congressional Democrats are.  And that isn’t an exaggeration.

 

The way people understand basic economic principles has an enormous influence on how well they will govern.  You should vote accordingly.  And if you love God and neighbor you won’t ignore how He wired the world.

——–

Economist Dog (TM), the hero of this story, could not be reached for comment.  He was on a conference call discussing how the demand for dog food is completely inelastic.   Also, he died last year.  We miss this special little guy!  He and his mate (pictured below) brought us countless blessings and good times and we thank God for that.

bluetooth dog

He also understood intellectual property rights and helped us earn a few $$ when this picture was used on a t-shirt sold by a large retailer.  But mostly he just chased squirrels and then sat on my lap and slept.  Backup Dog (TM) was equally loved but not quite as active.dogs

She was as cerebral as she looks here.
Back Camera

 

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Who is better at economics: Leftists or my dogs?

Note: The message here is more important than the title indicates.  I’ll eventually share how Leftists literally fail at basic economic concepts and how that has enormous implications for every aspect of society.

I am not making this up: My dog once submitted a college test in Economics and passed.

OK, there is a little more to the story.

When my youngest daughter home-schooled her last two years of high school, the dogs would hang out with her all day.  Once when she was in the middle of an online Economics test one of them jumped on the bed, landed on the keyboard and submitted the partially completed test.  And he passed!  Fortunately, the folks at the school were good sports about the high-tech version of “the dog really ate my homework” story and re-opened the system so the that real student could complete the test (she got her usual 99% or so).

But I offer that as a segue to remind people of an extremely important fact about basic economic principles, namely that those on the Left literally fail at them.  They aren’t just a little worse than Conservatives, they fail horribly and it drives their ideology.  The details are here, but note the results of a simple eight question economics test given to those across the political spectrum (and especially note how my dog fared):

Letter grade
Very Conservative 84% B
Libertarian 83% B
Conservative 79% C+
My dog 72% C
Moderate 54% F
Liberal 41% F
Progressive/very Liberal 34% F

Got that?  Progressives / very Liberal people only get a third of the questions right.  They could double their scores and still only get a D.  But the more conservative people are the better they do, with very Conservative people achieving a solid B.

Here’s an example of one of the questions:

Consider one of the economic propositions in the December 2008 poll: “Restrictions on housing development make housing less affordable.” People were asked if they: 1) strongly agree; 2) somewhat agree; 3) somewhat disagree; 4) strongly disagree; 5) are not sure.

Basic economics acknowledges that whatever redeeming features a restriction may have, it increases the cost of production and exchange, making goods and services less affordable. There may be exceptions to the general case, but they would be atypical.

In this case, percentage of conservatives answering incorrectly was 22.3%, very conservatives 17.6% and libertarians 15.7%. But the percentage of progressive/very liberals answering incorrectly was 67.6% and liberals 60.1%. The pattern was not an anomaly.

To recap that example, 2/3 of Leftists don’t know that restrictions — regardless of their merit — always increase costs.  How can they possibly make wise economic decisions?

Do not let the handsome canine below cause you to miss the key takeaways:

  • Understanding these basic economics concepts is crucial to leading properly. Therefore, Leftists should not be in charge of government.  Or economics.  Or much of anything else.  If you can’t get the basic building blocks of society right then all you will do is create more problems.
  • As the good folks at Freaknomics will tell you, Economics isn’t just about seemingly arcane financial metrics.  It is about behavior and incentives.  If you don’t understand how the basics of human nature work then your worldview is doomed to poor decision making.
  • The Law of Unintended Consequences will bite you far worse than my dog ever would (Italian Greyhounds are amazingly friendly) but the truth is that most consequences of Leftist policies are easy to anticipate.  The “War on Poverty” is a perfect example.  It wasn’t just a colossal flop, it was a completely predictable colossal flop.  It has deeply harmed tens of millions of people. We need to undo it as quickly as possible.  Leftists don’t realize or ignore that you get more of whatever you subsidize.  They subsidized single motherhood and got lots more of it, with the inescapable crime and poverty that comes with it.
  • This issue carries over to religion as well.  It is no surprise that Leftist Christian groups do much more harm than good.  False teachers don’t understand economics any better than they do the Bible.
  • All schools should host Junior Achievement classes.  These are proven to increase graduation rates and they teach critical life skills about budgeting, economics and more.  I taught them for 12 years and was continually impressed with their program.  You don’t need a PhD in Economics to understand the most important concepts.  Give me 30 minutes with a bunch of 7th graders and I will have them more fluent in basic economic principles like supply and demand than Congressional Democrats are.  And that isn’t an exaggeration.

 

The way people understand basic economic principles has an enormous influence on how well they will govern.  You should vote accordingly.  And if you love God and neighbor you won’t ignore how He wired the world.

——–

Economist Dog (TM), the hero of this story, could not be reached for comment.  He was on a conference call discussing how the demand for dog food is completely inelastic.   Also, he died last year.  We miss this special little guy!  He and his mate (pictured below) brought us countless blessings and good times and we thank God for that.

bluetooth dog

He also understood intellectual property rights and helped us earn a few $$ when this picture was used on a t-shirt sold by a large retailer.  But mostly he just chased squirrels and then sat on my lap and slept.  Backup Dog (TM) was equally loved but not quite as active.dogs

She was as cerebral as she looks here.
Back Camera

 

Michele Bachman wins debate. Waiting for the Left to try and destroy her in 3 . . . 2 . . . 1

Yeah, I’m re-using the 3 . . . 2 . . . 1 theme but it just seems to fit so well.  I like to use it when something is so utterly predictable.

See UK Telegraph pronounces Michele Bachmann the winner of the debate « Wintery Knight.  I’m hoping that when the Left tries to ridicule and destroy Bachman the way they did Sarah Palin that it backfires on them.  The 18-to-1 negative coverage worked to influence people to think Palin was stupid — even though the latest email analysis proved she was anything but, but hopefully the independent folks will catch on to what was really at work, namely the leftist theme that pro-life women are traitors and must be demolished.

Excerpt:

Tonight, she relentlessly pushed her experience as a tax lawyer, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, a decision-maker not afraid to buck her own party on TARP and a leader of the charge against Obamacare – not to mention being a mother of five and foster mother of 23.

There is often a herd mentality at debates. But I’ve never seen such unanimity as there was this time. In the spin room afterwards, almost everyone flocked initially to Team Bachmann to hear what they had to say.  Their game plan has been simple: 1. Grab the headlines by announcing she was running for president. It was gimmicky but effective. All the wires led with this “news” – I use inverted commas because we all knew she was running and she still hasn’t set a date for the actual announcement. 2. Push details of her broad experience and policy know-how.

Here’s the debate transcript:

She had a great response on Libya, pointing out things the state-run media should have been all over the last couple months.

To learn more about Bachmann, check out these profile pieces:

You can also see videos of Michele Bachmann interviews from a previous post.

These are both worth reading to understand her background, policies and voting record.

Bachman would make a great President or VP, but the faux-feminists will try to annihilate her first.

Another reason to move to Texas!

The title says it all: Texas requires losing parties of frivolous lawsuits to pay their own costs.  This has been needed for a long time.  It will eliminate waste, reduce stress for innocent people and give even more incentive for people to create businesses and jobs in Texas.  This is the kind of approach that led Texas to add more jobs over 5 years than the other 49 states combined.

From the Wall Street Journal:

This week, Texas Gov. Rick Perry signed a law that will help free Lone Star State businesses from the threat of frivolous lawsuits by enacting “loser-pays” tort reform. Prior to the legislation, litigants faced a no-lose situation, while defendants stood to lose everything—even for the most outrageous, bizarre and wrongful accusations.

Even when defendants won, the legal fees associated with protecting themselves could add up to tens of thousands of dollars. As a result, many pre-emptively settled out of court, as the settlement payment would be less than the legal fees. Under Texas’s new legislation, however, litigants will be forced to pay for the defendant’s attorney fees if the case is determined groundless. This will compel would-be litigants to consider the practicality of their complaint before taking legal action, and it will protect defendants from the dire financial impact of frivolous cases.

The Texas legislation should serve as a national model, especially as we recover from the Great Recession. America has the most expensive civil-justice system in the world, costing $255 billion in 2008, or nearly 2% of gross domestic product, according to a 2009 study by the firm Towers Perrin (now Towers Watson). That’s more than twice as much as any other industrialized nation as a percent of the GDP.

From the commentary by the Wintery Knight:

One of the reasons why we are in an economic mess is because we have not reined in the excesses of the trial lawyers. And the Democrats will never be able to rein them in because they are the core of the Democrat party, along with labor unions, teacher unions, word-smithing academics, criminals, welfare recipients and Hollywood celebrities. The sheltered, non-productive segments of society, who have never had to run a business or make payroll.

He forgot to mention the abortion and LGBTQ lobbies, but otherwise it was very accurate.

Jobs!!! Part 1

I really feel for the countless people out of work now.  That is an extremely stressful place to be.  Then there is the multiplier effect: People without jobs spend less and consume more resources from the public (i.e., those who are fortunate to still have jobs), so there is less demand, which results in fewer jobs, and so on.

Here’s a huge part of the problem: Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?  Self-identified liberals and Democrats do badly on questions of basic economics.

Who is better informed about the policy choices facing the country—liberals, conservatives or libertarians? According to a Zogby International survey that I write about in the May issue of Econ Journal Watch, the answer is unequivocal: The left flunks Econ 101.

These are the scores by political affiliation on a basic economics survey.  Anyone who can’t get at least six right should not be considered for public office.  (Yes, I got all eight right, but I wouldn’t expect everyone to do that.  I’m a CPA with 25 years of business experience and taught Junior Achievement for 12 years.)

If these people can’t get basic economic questions right — and those scores are squarely in the FAIL category — why would you hire them to run your economy?

Not surprisingly, you really, really don’t want to listen to what “progressive” (read: theologically Liberal or just “fake”) churches have to say about economics.  They don’t even understand the Bible, let alone a basic understanding of economics.  So why should people like Jim “the Gospel is all about wealth redistribution” Wallis be advising the President — especially after he was caught lying about taking donations from George Soros?

What you do want is more Junior Achievement classes in all grades.  They are proven to reduce drop out rates and they provide excellent training in basic economic and money management principles.

Roundup

arby

We’re going to celebrate Valentine’s Day at Arby’s.  We went to our favorite local place the other day, but Arby’s is nostalgic for us.  We got married right out of college and got dressed up and went out on a Friday night for our first Valentine’s Day as a married couple.  We never thought about making reservations.  The lines were unbelievably long so we ended up at the Arby’s drive-through.  Then we went back to the apartment and watched Miami Vice.  Good times!

P.S. I don’t like to brag, but I’m an Arby’s alumnus.  I worked at one the summer after my freshman year in college. Oddly, that doesn’t translate into discounts with them. 

Great advice on credit cards, checks and identity theft protection from Barb’s blog.

Visit Duane’s Mind for some good stuff about Darwin Day. 

Undercover employee at Wal-mart discovers they ain’t so bad — Some people love to demonize Wal-Mart for allegedly underpaying their employees and not providing enough benefits, among other things. I’m not saying Wal-Mart is perfect or beyond criticism by any means. I just find that the bashers display the typical covetous attitude of those who think God is doing a lousy job of distributing wealth and that He needs their help to fix the problem.  And they usually appear to have a disdain for those who shop at Wal-Mart. 

Wal-Mart does a lot of things really well.  I especially like their pro-customer attitude.  They realize that the average customer spends roughly $200,000 there over the course of a lifetime so offending one of them is incredibly costly.  Can you imagine how much nicer things would be if every business was so customer focused?

Here’s what I always recommend to Wal-Mart bashers (you’d be surprised how quickly they change the subject one you suggest this): Start up a business near a Wal-Mart and pay slightly higher wages and benefits. It will be a triple win: Your business will be successful because you hired some of the best and brightest Wal-Mart employees, their standard of living will increase and you’ll be sticking it to your enemy. It is called capitalism. It has some hard edges at times, but it has done more to reduce poverty and increase standards of living than any other “-ism” every invented.

Hat tip: The Pugnacious Irishman

I was glad to see the Pope speak out against the Holocaust denying Bishop.  But I’m always amused by those like the Reverend Pathological Unrepentent Liar Chuck Currie who are so shrill about Holocaust deniers but are themselves Gospel deniers.  In direct contrast to the New Testament, false teachers like Currie deliberately hold back the eternal life-saving message of the Gospel from Jewish people.  That’s an eternal Holocaust, but “reverends” like Chuck are either too ignorant, cowardly or evil to speak the truth.

To paraphrase Currie, the real Gospel simply cannot be denied and those that do should have no place in positions of authority in any church.