What a field day for the heat
A thousand people in the street
Singing songs and carrying signs
Mostly saying, "hooray for our side"

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Happy World Malaria Day

Sorry I didn't get you a cake or anything.

But, hey, I am typing to you during the middle of the first large thunderstorm of the Spring Season. April showers bringing May flowers and all.

Dear local TV stations. It really sucks that a major storm is passing overhead and you've got nothing on your screens. The Youngstown station has a little map, but it doesn't show Ashtabula. However, the 2 counties south of us have Sever Thunderstorm Warnings (my guess is so do we). Really don't care about the sports programming, would be nice to see what's happening out there (and the Weather Channel is into their stupid weather stories programming).

Since there's a discussion going on with Anonymous Cassie in the comments (and this topic has been brought up once or twice in our discussions), I point to this blog post by Tim Wise entitled, "Imagine if the Tea Party Was Black." (Grokked from Jay Lake) Not necessarily an argument about if the TPM is racist, but maybe throwing a clarifying light on privilege and tolerance of language. Not all of his arguments point to prominent people, but most of them directly lead back to non-fringe (in public position) characters. It's an interesting exercise. But hey, it might not be entirely their fault, considering this study abstract which demonstrates that "Participants subliminally primed with Christian words displayed more covert racial prejudice against African-Americans (Study 1) and more general negative affect toward African-Americans (Study 2) than did persons primed with neutral words."

Also, because it came up is discussion with Anonymous Cassie, some statistics. A Washington Post article on Zero Job Growth for the Aughts. There's another article showing percentage GDP growth by decade, unfortunately I didn't link to it when I found it. The chart shows larger growth for the 50s and 60s, slowing growth for the 70s and 80s, a resurgence in the 90s, and then the worse growth since the Great Depression for the aughts. They talk about various reasons, the causes du jour. But what I'd like to have you keep in mind looking at their charts is this, in the 40s-60s we had a highly progressive income tax and, compared to today's standards, massive government regulation and interference in the markets. That started lessening in the 70s, accelerated in the 80s, swung partially the other way in the 90s, and then went back to full throttle tax cuts and deregulation in the aughts. IMHO, "tax cuts and deregulation spur economic growth" is as much a myth as the "markets favor Republican Administrations" (which I did an article on a while back disproving it). It sounds nice, but doesn't work in reality.

Also, a Salon article on the number of Snopes.com entries comparing GW Bush and Obama. (Grokked from Jay Lake) Also indicative of why and how certain responses are happening currently in the political theater.

Now I need to go do other things than research on economic forecasts and structures.


Anonymous said...

I'm teaching debate tomorrow with the resolution "The government should compel immunizations due to public health concerns" and you don't bother to link to the World Malaria Day source?

Hmph. ;-)

Anonymous Cassie

Steve Buchheit said...

Sorry, Cassie.

As for compelling immunizations, there are people who are immuno-compromised and they should be exempted.

However, given the arguments around mandating insurance coverage, I have a feeling than mandating people get actual shots would be an even more uphill battle.

Anonymous said...

That's a huge part of the debate - if the students are doing their research.

We got into the moral issues of does the government have the right under a social contract to enforce immunizations more than we got into immuno-compromised people (although I'm informed that I'm being incorrect in using "immuno-compromised" as an adjective instead of saying "people with immuno-compromised systems.)

Debate is more fun than one person should be allowed to have.

Anonymous Cassie