Displaying 1 - 10 of 1808 Forum Posts1 2 3 4 5 Next
  • Mar 14, 2019 07:13 PM
    Last: 4d

    I’ve got a 19 month old which probably influences my calculus. I’ve read and reread all of his text files. I just don’t think you get to be president after writing something like that, or shouldn’t be. Most of the Beto people I know in Texas are unmoved and point to Trump. But the Democratic Party is supposed to have higher standards than Trump. I don’t think Beto meets that standard knowing what we know now.

  • Mar 14, 2019 07:13 PM
    Last: 4d

    This shit about Beto as a teenager writing a psychotic horror fantasy about murdering children by running them over with a car is disqualifying.

    I get that we all did things that we regret when we were kids but this is a bridge too far for me.

    I might be able to excuse this for a lower level office but not the Presidency.

    It’s too unsettling morally and emotionally despite whatever rationale or reasoning that excuses it as the errors of a wayward youth on his way to becoming presidential timber.

    It will be used as a powerful weapon against the Democrats if he were to become President. The golden boy is American psycho.

    Further, it raises questions about what else is there? We knew about the DUI, rock music and skateboards, and weed. We’ve heard the whispers about shady business dealings by his father or family. Now this? Hard to believe there’s nothing else. Cloud of suspicion hangs over him.

    And how did the media find this out? Why didn’t he have this scrubbed?

    Beto 2020 blew up right off the launch pad.

    I cry no tears for him.

  • Mar 14, 2019 07:13 PM
    Last: 4d

    I think he has that Democratic philosopher-king vibe but his resume seems very thin. I voted for him against Cruz.

    The main benefit of Beto is how it could change the electoral map if he turns Texas blue. That means death to the Republicans in 2020 and beyond.

    But Democrats need major GOTV efforts in Texas to make that happen and capitalize down ticket. Beto alone doesn’t do that.

  • Feb 26, 2019 12:22 PM
    Last: 24d
    I’m against this until enforcement and compliance costs are estimated. My hunch is those costs will divert a lot of resources and that it would be easier to just declare certain trades illegal or ban “banks” from participating and throw people in jail (or receivership in the case of the corporate entity) when they break the law.
  • Feb 22, 2019 06:42 PM
    Last: 21d
    Schmidt Wrote:

    As far as costs go, when you add maybe 30 million currently uninsured, eliminate all deductibles, co-pays and fees, and then include such things as free eyecare, free dentists, free podiatry, free long term care, and free abortions (no Hyde Amendment), free just about everything, then costs go way up.

    The crux of the thing is what costs are you talking about? Real or financial? Per unit prices or total prices paid (total spending or total costs of production)? And what prices?......in healthcare or the general economy?

    To be absolutely clear, I'm not making fun or trying to be argumentative. I'm just thinking things through from my POV, i.e. MFA would be a deflationary event.

    Medicare is going to fix healthcare prices paid under MFA for better or worse. Healthcare prices are going to be "administered" by the government subject to its revision. So the inflationary impact from expanding healthcare output is the real resources that get diverted as result of healthcare from other uses in the economy (leading to shortages in non-healthcare goods and services, driving up their prices). That diversion comes from not just the real resource input costs of healthcare delivery but also the consumption of non-healthcare goods and services by healthcare suppliers.

    Cost savings come from getting rid of all the associated costs of the private insurance companies. No need for them because everyone is insured. The money in the Medicare Trust Fund will also be rolled into the new Trust Fund that collects all revenue from the various taxes to fund the program. The Medicare Trust fund will jump start the program.

    Under current law, Medicare Part B and D have no solvency risks because shortfalls are fully funded by the U.S. Treasury.

    We need to do the same with every Trust Fund, including Social Security and Medicare parts A and C (if we are to have Trust Funds at all).

    And there will be also cost savings by reduced salaries and fees from hospital, doctors, nurses, and other care givers whose salaries and fees will be tightly controlled by the government. No more private entities making big profits. These fees are already set by Medicare, but the problem is right now is it is difficult to find a doctor that serves Medicare patients. Some take a small percentage of Medicare and Medicaid patients, but it is the employer based plans that make them the big profits and why they choose to stay in business. How many doctors, nurses, and such choose to remain in the system if their fees for service are reduced to Medicare type rates?

    My bigger concern with MFA is the idea of maximum pay structures. That could kill 1099 staffing of physicians and nurses.

  • Feb 22, 2019 06:42 PM
    Last: 21d

    the corporate tax is a pass thru regressive tax paid by consumers and/or labor, not capital - this is taught in the mainstream textbooks

    the financial transactions tax is said to be needed to curb speculation and high frequency trades, why not just make those sort of things illegal?

    I think the tax abatement thing is just one of the issues activists have with Amazon. Labor conditions, compensations, gentrification, and responsible corporate behavior are all part of their complaints. The tax abatement/incentives thing is a problem, and the U.S. Congress is the only thing that can stop the race to bottom among local/state govts.

    also, I’ve seen a chart recently that Sanders put out that showed the costs of his spending initiatives vs revenue raised by his proposed tax increases. I didn’t add it all up but eyeball math indicated they were close to matching but not quite.

    In any event, Sanders knows better and needs to stop with the public deficit terrorism while recognizing MMT in private. In that sense, he’s kind of like you in that he’s too afraid to ‘go there’ fearing it will go over the heads of voters. But he ends up complaining about deficits while simultaneously proposing additional deficit spending. He just needs to let Stephanie Kelton run point, let her be the policy clearinghouse, and then get her message out there.

    MFA is going to be a deflationary event without taxes added. It is an offset. People demanding additional offsets are calling for austerity! MFA might cause a financial crisis. We are talking about destroying trillions and trillions in balance sheet wealth and future earnings of a large sector of the economy. Meanwhile, everything produced in the U.S. will be cheaper to make because healthcare would not be a cost of production for businesses. Presumably, we would have a healthier workforce and society with all sorts of positive externalities and 2nd and 3rd order effects that make our economy more efficient. Yes, if healthcare is free to people, that’s like a tax cut. But we know some of the ‘tax cut’ will be saved. And the inflationary pressure would have to be as large as the deflationary effects just get back to neutral. Meanwhile, the inflationary ‘tax cut’ effect would be delayed over time; whereas, the deflationary effects begin on day one. So I think MFA legislation needs to be accompanied by a payroll tax holiday.

    I stand by this logic and it’s more thought out than calls for deficit neutral MFA. I could be wrong about the need for such a large tax cut but at a minimum much smaller tax increases are needed than currently suggested.

    Nobody has modeled the need for offsets (positive or negative) for price stability purposes. Everything is about revenue and deficit neutrality (and these sorts of forecasts are notoriously unreliable and wrong - see the CBO’s predictative track record).

  • Feb 22, 2019 06:42 PM
    Last: 21d


    We shouldn’t want to turn the Democratic Party into the Green Party or Occupy Wall Street if we want professional results. But Zakaria is kidding himself if he thinks the agenda he has laid out is going to drive people to the polls.

    I like what he said about taxes. The compliance and enforcement costs of taxes is enormous and diverts tons of resources and is varely rarely considered. When judging a tax it’s all about what the tax does to taxpayer behavior and not the revenue raised. The perfect tax raises no revenue but changes tax payer behavior exactly as policy makers desired.

  • Feb 19, 2019 11:31 PM
    Last: 19d

    So I still work in physician staffing and ER program management. My wife is a travel nurse recruiter.

    There is all kinds of frictions that prevent full or maximum employment of healthcare providers, and the efficient use of that labor is a whole separate issue with its own problems.

  • Feb 19, 2019 11:31 PM
    Last: 19d

    Hi Schmidt,

    I remember 14 years ago my now wife was thinking about going to nursing school but their standards were so high there was no way she could get in without redoing a lot of school. She got her undergrad instead in psychology.

    Today, Texas allows "well qualified" two-year community colleges to operate 4 year BSN programs. The tuition cost is half of university programs.


    Anyways, there is a real labor constraint. There is a real budget of X amount in hours of nursing labor available at any given point based on the full employment of available nurses. While we need more nurses, we waste a lot of that real budget with inefficiencies.

    And we need to find ways to improve public health so that Americans are not so sick in the first place. No matter the financing system, healthcare is going to cost a lot because we need so much of it. And it's going to eat up a lot of our real budgets.

    The federal government can afford financially to provide as much healthcare as the Nation can provide.

    We need to stay laser focused on the real budgets and real deficits, and not let the fake news peddled by Democrats and Republicans about government budget deficits prevent us from doing stuff about real problems.

  • Feb 19, 2019 08:10 AM
    Last: 1d

    My personal preference would be for a Tammy Duckworth-Tulsi Gabbard ticket. Both are veterans, persons of color, and female. Duckworth is one of the finest Americans of her generation. I may not agree with her on a lot, but I respect her as a person of higher moral character and courage than I ever will possess. She is an iron lady without fucking legs who gave birth at 50.

    Gabbard would help unite the party with the Bernie/Progressive wing, but she brings some baggage from her left-right heterodoxy.

    In any event, blaming Bernie for Hillary's loss is ridiculous. Yes, it took him a little over two weeks for him to concede in June 2016 as all the votes were counted and he attempted to win concessions on some issues from Hillary. That's what a losing fucking primary campaign should do. Yes, Bernie people were upset with the superdelegate system. So was Hillary after the primary in 2008.

    Then Wikileaks hit in July. People at the DNC lost their job over what was exposed. Yes, that probably pissed a lot of Berners off. Maybe some stayed home or voted for Trump because of that. But Hillary-McCain voters outnumbered Bernie-Trump voters.

    Hillary overwhelming won the popular vote as Trump got less votes than McCain and Romney. The problem was Hillary's national team didn't listen to people like Michael Moore, who begged and pleaded with Democrats to take Trump seriously, especially in the Rust Belt where Hillary ultimately lost the electoral college. According to the blame Bernie logic, by extension of his support for Bernie in the primary, Moore is also to blame for Hillary's loss? Meanwhile, Hillary's own ground team in the Rust Belt was begging the national campaign for more resources and upset that they were neglected.

    Elections are about getting out the vote. That takes leg work. That means talking to people. Getting inside their head. Getting them to make a plan to vote. It takes human resources. Political ad campaigns are important, but human beings on the ground are the difference. Radio and TV ads don't register people to vote.

    Trump should never have been elected. Hillary's campaign failure to support her own ground team in the Rust Belt is not on him. That's on the nominee. Failure to recognize why Hillary lost may cost the next election and elections to come.