Linky Friday #113: University Sport Edition

Great Britain:

[G1] Sean Kemp argues that British politics are too obsessed with American politics.

[G2] Take a quiz to find out who you should be rooting for in the UK elections! It includes a question on “non-domicile status” which I happened to read an article on a couple weeks ago.

[G3] Alex Massie writes about the two tribes of Scotland, and how the Scottish independence movement isn’t over. Meanwhile, Janan Ganesh and Daniel Larison think that English impatience is the greatest threat to the United Kingdom.

[G4] Benjamin Schwarz argues that urban planners are demolishing Britain’s working families.

[G5] As overboard as I believe our CPS goes sometimes, at least we aren’t Britain, where parents are being warned that they will be reported if kids play the wrong video games.

America:

[A1] Washington state looks to have a 75mph speed limit. Welcome (back) to the west, Washington! Seriously, the low statewide speed limit happens when a majority of people in the state live in a place where something is appropriate for that part of the state and not necessarily the state as a whole.

[A2] Even though they tend to be net beneficiaries of tax dollars, I often wonder if secondary and smaller cities in populous states like New York, California, and Illinois would be better off if they weren’t anchored to those cities. Articles like this touch on why.

[A3] From Oscar Gordon: Today on “Politicians Desperately Seeking Relevancy.”

[A4] From Oscar Gordon: That’s one way to indicate to a union that you aren’t interested.

Law:

[L1] It is becoming increasingly apparent that Scooter Libby got screwed.

[L2] The System must be preserved, demonstrable innocence be damned.

[L3] New York has high cigarette taxes, which results in a significant black market. Much of which comes from Virginia. So what responsibility, if any, does Virginia have here? There are some interesting parallels here with NY:VA::USA:Mexico.

[L4] The estate of Marion Barry is suing his kidney donor.

[L5] No serious harm was meant, and no damage was done, but let’s go ahead and charge an eighth grader with felony hacking.

[L6] Henry Rayhons, the guy who was arrested and charged with having sex with his wife (who had dementia) in a nursing home, was acquitted.

University:

[U1] Former Corinthian graduates are going on student loan strikes, while another is suing. But the colleges are shutting their doors.

[U2] Saul bait via Oscar Gordon: Why should states fund university philosophy departments?

[U3] Liberty University is the first FBS school to announce that it’s going to pay its students athletes the full cost of university attendance. Notably, they’re also the FBS school most anxious to move up in to the FCS.

[U4] Meanwhile, Colorado State, which like a great many schools is looking to upgrade from G5 to P5, is taking on a whole lot of debt on a bond to build a new football stadium, in addition to a plethora of student-related goodies like luxury dorms and student centers.

[U5] Louisiana State, on the other hand, can’t even get a bond.

[U6] Jason Rabedeaux was once an attractive rising star in the world of college basketball coaching. He was found dead, fat, and wasted away in Saigon.

Health:

[H1] Russell Saunders got his first mammogram.

[H2] From Christopher Carr: My wife was wondering why we hadn’t seen lychees at the supermarket lately and found this.

[H3] The Science of Ouch: Why it hurts so much when you stub your @$*@ing toe.

[H4] News I can use: Facts about urine, including how to train yourself to pee less often.

Progress:

[P1] From Oscar Gordon: This makes me just want to build my own printer…

[P2] This will not only add economic efficiency to consumer products, but will be great for those of us who are allergic to waste.

[P3] From Road Scholar: An alternative to carbon sequestration?

[P4] David Shultz wants to know if you’ll be able to read modern-day articles in 1,000 years, with an eye towards antiquated hardware. To answer his question, I think the answer is “yes” for text, due in large part from the transition from binary to marked up text. You won’t necessarily have the formatting, but you’ll have something readable. I’m less sure about image files, and skeptical about anything dynamic like video games or interactive anything.

Culture:

[C1] I recently listened to a graphic audio that was incredibly painful. It was simultaneously so busy that I had no idea what was going on, yet also quite boring. But I had to see it through to the end. Because of that, this story about “purge-watching” (as opposed to binge-watching) really resonated.

[C2] From Glyph: Daniel Scotto asked if I was Herman Kahn, which led me to this not-new but very-interesting profile of the man

[C3] Christopher Carr passes along this link about where binge drinking occurs most in the US.

[C4] At Hit Coffee, I wrote some more about Atlas Shrugged as well as [C5] commuting costs and satellite cities.

[C6] Ben Schwartz argues that we are in an age of a comedic bubble and satirical excess.

[C7] This video – Via Oscar – cannot be unseen, and since life is long, you’re likely to see it at some point. So go ahead and watch it now. I can’t say you won’t regret it, but you will have satisfied the inevitability:

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199 thoughts on “Linky Friday #113: University Sport Edition

    • You think that a dude who was nicknamed after “rain” doesn’t have the UK in his hip pocket (which is approximately five feet off the ground)?

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  1. P2: Remember the wall in Germany that would pee back on people who tried to pee on it? Same physics at play, although slightly different mechanism by which to get there.

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  2. [U6] is the saddest thing I’ve ever read. Holy Jesus.

    [C6] That Baffler piece is way long, so I haven’t finished it yet; but it touches on something that I’ve struggled to articulate when it comes to politicians (especially the President) commingling as freely with satire and comedy as they do today. I have a sinking feeling that the roles of King and court Jester are supposed to be played by different people for a good reason…

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      • Right? I don’t even know why I read it, it’s not like I care about basketball coaching. But it was incredibly well-written, and I liked the webpage presentation, and by the time I realized what was happening, it was too late, and now I want to go get lost in Saigon and drink myself to death.

        I also feel like I should clarify my second bullet – by “Jester” I am not trying to imply the President is a clown (though as I’ve remarked before, he has pretty good comic timing).

        I don’t dislike the guy, he’s done about as well as anybody can be expected to, and probably better than most of the realistically-likely alternatives; if I disagree with him severely on some stuff, those disagreements are largely due to systemic (and maybe even personality) issues that ANY politician who is able to achieve the Presidency at this point in history would be subject to. When he does the wrong things, I still think he believes he’s doing them for the right reasons; I wouldn’t mind getting a beer with him, FWIW.

        I don’t consider myself a hater, is what I’m getting at.

        It’s just that…the day after the most recent WHCD, I ruminated that in the future, no sane President will *ever* risk giving a Stephen Colbert a platform to come up and rip them a new one. They will always make sure that they have all the best jokes, and that the room and the country is laughing with them, not at them.

        Maybe that’s a baseless worry, and it’s certainly not like I respect a humorless person more (far from it); but I do want the Administration to have some separation in the public sphere from entertainment; and, for lack of a better word, I think I want some “dignity” or even “dullness/squareness”, to remain inhered to them.

        Is that weird coming from me?

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        • The precise problem methinks is when the President (any President, or anybody with a high profile powerful job) goes too meta. Meta is so much of comedy and, especially, so much of political comedy these days.

          Lincoln comes to mind as the President most famous for an acerbic sardonic wit, (“if I actually were two-faced, do you think I’d wear this one?”). But his jokes were always directed at the audience in front of them, and rarely (to my knowledge) in service of trying to make some larger point.

          The difference in someone like Stewart going meta and someone in the White House is that the White House actually has the power to shape the meta-narrative. So joking about it crosses the line into either tastelessness or outright obscenity. (I’m thinking of Bush’s WHCD where they did the pre-filmed segment on looking for WMDs).

          You know who I think is handling this demarcation well these days? Al Franken, of all people.

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        • I read the Rabedeaux story when it first came out, because I follow college basketball pretty closely (as you’ll all get to see, along with wonderful Nietzsche jokes that only I find funny, now that my Twitter feed is on the OT list on the bottom right of the page… yay for you), and I actually remember him when he was at UTEP . Plus he reminds me of some people I know, people who seem to be tortured by merely living in their own skin.

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          • @chris

            It was the Saigon part that interested me. There’s something about that particular locale (or at least how it exists in my imagination) that caught me interest. Then I scanned the article to see where this coach had coached. Then I saw the Kelvin Sampson connection and ended up reading the whole thing knowing where it was headed:

            Sampson got a job. Didn’t hire this guy. Last straw.

            Great writing.

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            • Yeah, I thought the Saigon flavor was fascinating; I’ve never really been that interested in going before, but for some reason I am now (though hopefully if I ever do, things would turn out differently for me). Alex Garland’s second novel The Tesseract is set in Manila, and for some reason it reminded me a little of that.

              It was a great piece and I’m glad I read it, but it really got me. Then Ben E. King died. It’s feeling like a weepy Friday.

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    • I wonder to what extent the level of involvement we have now, particularly with the president, comes from what happened in ’06. If you’re going to get roasted mercilessly, might as well do the roasting yourself, right? That way you don’t actually get burned.

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  3. P3: This article needs to do a better job of making it clear that there’s no magic here, and that it requires more energy to create the synthetic diesel than can be obtained from burning it. I can see the average reader coming away from this thinking that this is unlimited free energy. Especially with that headline.

    P4: I wouldn’t worry about binary, either. As long as we can preserve text documents, we can preserve documentation of the binary formats, from which readers and emulators can be reconstructed as long as someone cares enough. The PS4 may not be able to read a Crash Bandicoot disc, but with an emulator any desktop computer can.

    The main thing I think will be lost is personal communication. Physical electronic storage media tend to decay over time, so the backups need to be periodically refreshed. That’s fine when someone’s making a specific effort to archive stuff, but nobody’s going to archive your email for hundreds of years after you die. And mostly it won’t matter, but I gather that this sort of thing is valuable to historians.

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        • The one conversation I had about it had to do with the efficiency of the process (chemical engineer wondering if it made economic sense, how much energy was required to make the stuff that released X energy in a car — lot of discussion over relative efficiency of power plants versus car engines) and another chemical engineer (focus on sustainability) pointing out that in addition to (likely) tax credits from C02 reduction, that even if the process is substantially less efficiency than the energy costs of yanking oil out of the ground, it might be worth it in terms of lowering C02 footprint (and might be more economical in places with things like carbon taxes).

          In short, you’d need a lot of numbers to sort out whether this is workable. The hook — less C02 emitted (what you burn is the C02 yanked from the air anyways, plus whatever the power plant emits — and power plants can be very low emissions indeed compared to cars) makes it worth looking at.

          I suspect it’ll be more economical in a world of carbon taxes or when oil pushes past 120 a barrel again.

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    • A2: Is there anywhere that there are cities in the 30K-100K size range that are all of: (a) non-suburban, (b) not exploiting a unique aspect of geography, and (c) doing well? (b) is intended to cover cases like state capitals or sitting on top of an enormous pool of oil and natural gas. The top stuff on the wish lists that the Colorado Governor’s Office hears from companies considering relocation or expansion to the state are large skilled workforce, transportation, and infrastructure. Taxes and regulations are pretty far down on those lists. With no disrespect, relatively isolated cities of that size are largely an artifact of an earlier time. You could probably stretch the upper limit and the same argument holds.

      The article makes a big deal about Medicaid costs. Each of the three states Will names are rich enough overall that the feds pick up only 50% of the cost of Medicaid. Upstate New York or downstate Illinois would probably be better off from a Medicaid perspective if they cut off their big city and its suburbs — because then they would be poor enough that the feds would pick up as much as 70% of the costs, depending on just how poor they turned out to be.

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        • @ck-macleod I’m not sure if this is the reason, but there was a longstanding bug where if you clicked the reply button for a particular comment, then cancelled it and tried to respond to the OP, your comment would still show up as a reply to the comment whose reply button you last clicked.

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      • That’s below the population range I am talking about (and lower than Binghampton, looks like). I’m talking about cities that wouldn’t be secondary or considered small, if they weren’t playing second fiddle to much larger metropolitan areas. More like Fresno or Buffalo than a place half the size of Utica.

        (A counter-example seems to be Spokane, which plays second fiddle to Seattle but doesn’t seem to be paying a price for it. But Washington isn’t California or New York. So I’m really not sure the theory holds.)

        I can come up with a few that might or almost qualify, depending on your definition of “doing well.” Idaho Falls and Twin Falls are doing pretty well. You can attribute the former to INL, but that only partially explains it. Great Falls, maybe, though you can say that’s only because of the military. A population of 100,000 typically means that there is going to be something to hang your hat on. (But again, that’s not really what I was referring to.)

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      • How do you define whether a place is suburban or not? Santa Rosa could be a suburb of San Francisco or Oakland but there are a lot of people who live in Santa Rosa and work in the city or Sonoma/Marin instead of commuting to San Francisco or Oakland but there are plenty of people who are willing to commute far to get to work in the Bay Area. I always run into admin assistants and the like who live far out in places like Fairfield.

        The only answers I can think of are maybe some college towns like Ithaca (population 30,000) and home to Cornell University and Ithaca College. But even that is a strain because you have a small group that does very well (professors and admins connected to the university) and others doing very poorly (even if they are employed by the big university). But Ithaca would probably be more screwed without Cornell and Ithaca College. They also have an incredibly young mayor.

        Would you consider a college or university to be a variant of B?

        James Fallows has been trying to argue for America’s towns at the Atlantic. The Hudson River Valley and places like Nyack, Tarrytown, Hudson, etc are sort of becoming a Brooklyn North as people get outpriced from Brooklyn. But Hudson is still decreasing in population and these are small compared to your figures.

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        • Would you consider a college or university to be a variant of B?

          In many cases, yes. A college/university is always helpful; it’s really helpful if it’s a school that creates spin-offs that keep talented people in the area. The right kind of military base can do the same things. To use examples from the area where I live in Colorado… CU in Boulder and CSU in Fort Collins are notorious for the number of small companies that get spun off from the campuses, and not all remain small. (Side note — once you get enough start-ups there’s a sort of positive feedback that happens, as you get firms that specialize in services that start-ups need, which attracts more start-ups…) The new CU medical campus at the east edge of Denver has pulled in an amazing number of biotech and similar start-ups in a remarkably short time. If you are a military contractor that does tech for tanks (or anti-tanks), you have a presence in Colorado Springs because of Fort Carson and the Pinon Canyon Maneuver Area.

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    • Brandon Berg: This article needs to do a better job of making it clear that there’s no magic here, and that it requires more energy to create the synthetic diesel than can be obtained from burning it.

      Agreed that the headline is perhaps a bit misleading. A more accurate description would be something like, “Diesel fuel from water, carbon dioxide, and electricity.” Complete and clean combustion of a hydrocarbon fuel yields only water and carbon dioxide (and heat of course) as reaction products. This process is essentially backwards “burning,” an endothermic reaction going the other direction.

      Yeah, it’s certainly no miracle but it is interesting in that a process has been around since WWII to produce a liquid fuel from carbon monoxide and water vapor (Syngas). I suspect this is very similar if you looked at the intermediate reactions. It’s also no economic miracle since the last paragraph admits they’re aiming for a pre-tax price approximately double that of conventional diesel.

      And when I sent the link to Will I added the bit about sequestration, but upon reflection that isn’t really correct. It doesn’t remove carbon from the atmosphere so much as just recycle existing atmospheric carbon.

      The real value lies in the ability to create a liquid fuel for transportation — heavy trucks, aviation, and rail — that doesn’t depend upon petroleum. It’s one thing to build an electric car; it’s quite another to build an electric semi. I hate to think how big those batteries would have to be. The simple truth is that from an engineering perspective liquid hydrocarbon fuels rock. They’re energy dense and relatively safe and easy to handle, and we have a lot of engineering experience with them. A synthetic fuel like this is even better because it’s free of contaminants like sulfur and the average molecular weight (octane or decane rating) can be more tightly controlled.

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  4. L4: the link for this is bad but assuming that the teaser is accurate (and why shouldn’t I? This is Trumwill), this is probably something that we, as a society, should say is “evil” and start publicly shaming these people until Justine Sacco says “damn, I’m glad I’m not them.”

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  5. C1: I do not understand purge watching, in much the same way I do not understand people who spend time finishing video games they do not enjoy. Why would somebody spend their leisure time doing something they do not enjoy doing?

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    • The term is “Sunk Cost Fallacy”. People feel like they’ve already put so much into the show that they just have to see it out.

      I will keep watching a show for a while if I think there’s a chance it still might be going somewhere good. I refer to this a putting a show on death watch. The key to doing death watch correctly is that you should be genuinely unsure whether you will drop the show or not, so some of the time you will end up still watching the show (as happened to me with Hannibal Season 1) and some of the time you will end up dropping it (like I did with Blacklist Season 1 and Breaking Bad in Season 2). If you are sure you’re going to end up dropping the show, you might as well do it now.

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  6. G4-Urban renewal was an avoidable mistake in the United States but I’m not sure about the United Kingdom or the rest of Europe. World War II did destroy hundreds of thousands of houses in the United Kingdom. Most of the rest that still stood were basically inadequate by mid-20th century needs, many had three rooms or less and lacked any mid-20th century modern convenience. The temptation to build something modern with all the new conveniences was too great and people probably too poor to buy or rent housing on the private market. I’m really not sure if there was an alternative to flats and modernist housing and planning in the United Kingdom after World War II. I suppose that the British government could have built modernized versions of working class housing instead of flats and estates but no architect was really advocating anything like that. Whether the government did it or the private market it did it, rebuilding working class Britain like it was, was not going to happen.

    I’m also not really sure that the authors conclusions are strong. Urban renewal does wreck cities but there were other forces at work that would be equally destructive to the British or any other working class and much more difficult to ignore like globalization. To preserve the British working class in an idealized state, which I’m not sure really ever existed as much as people think it did, would require a self-sustaining British economy with no outside influence. That is an impossibility. It would require no great changes in social mores. Even without immigration, decolonization, and the welfare state, British society would have liberalized along with other Western countries. Preserving mid-20th century British society, which still had a lot in common with the pre-World War I world even if only a muted way was simply not possible.

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  7. G5-American anime fans often got into anime because Japanese cartoons were radically different than American cartoons in what they could get away with while still writing for a kid audience. You could have violence with consequences, death, non-one dimensional villains, complicated plots, romance, a little bit of sex, and some very dirty humor in a kid’s cartoon. You couldn’t get away with any of that in American cartoon for the most part. Than I learned about all the restrictions on kid’s television in the UK and felt much better about what American kids got.

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    • And it gets better.

      Wildstein has already pled guilty; Baroni says he’s “always tried to do the right thing”; and Kelly is ready to throw everyone under the bus, potentially including Christie hisownself by putting him on the stand, to prove she’s “innocent”. (Innocent? I don’t think she knows what that word means…) And Christie continues to claim that everything everyone else is saying exonerates him.

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  8. G4: I largely agree with what Lee said. It should also be noted that working class British families really liked the Estate housing when it first came out because they finally got hot and cold running water. This sort of goes to my point about Ideology is Okay. The American right-wing just finds it inconceivable that people could honestly believe in and like government services and the welfare state because they are too into their yeo yeo yeoman beliefs.

    G2: Labour all the way!!!

    G5: And a lot of non-Americans believe in the extent of this kind of stuff. You need to be a licensed babysitter in many countries and this is nuts to me but many non-Americans have said told me that they think we are nuts by having baby-sitting be an unlicensed job.

    U1: I largely think it is good that they are shutting down because for-profit colleges are still a huge racket to me but something should be done for the students. Taxpayers are probably going to end up footing a large bill here.

    U2: I would argue that universities should have philosophy departments because I don’t see how something can call itself a university if it all it teaches is STEM and Business courses and other so-called “practical” subjects. A university is supposed to be a place dedicated to a universal grouping of subjects and this needs to include the arts and humanities. What does the the author suggest the 2 million go to instead? The Grounds? A sports team? Nothing? We are also talking about the importance of commuter schools for affordability reasons. I don’t think there should be two classes of schools or students. So if you want local commuter colleges, the local commuter colleges should be able to offer a wide-range of subjects to study. I also think this is an area where the slippery slope is real. First philosophy, then French, then Dance, then History, etc.

    U6: Sad and tragic story.

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    • G4: Many working class British families liked council housing because of the modern amenities. Others wanted their old neighborhoods. Others wanted new housing but in the form of a single-family home with a garden rather than a flat.

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    • It should also be noted that working class British families really liked the Estate housing when it first came out because they finally got hot and cold running water. This sort of goes to my point about Ideology is Okay. The American right-wing just finds it inconceivable that people could honestly believe in and like government services and the welfare state because they are too into their yeo yeo yeoman beliefs.

      So, in your estimation, conservatives and libertarians hate hot and cold running water? Or is that people on the right just hate poor people and want them kept in a state of perpetual deprivation that forces them to walk miles each day toting water from a small fetid stream as conservatives preach to them from their bibles and libertarians twirl their mustaches and polish their monocles?

      Here is another interpretation that involves a much less hackneyed version of what other people think: maybe people on the right do, in fact, appreciate hot and cold running water and would like to see as many people have indoor plumbing as possible, but simply believe that having the government demolish existing neighborhoods and existing social networks to build centrally administered superblocks was a spectacularly bad idea in a history of bad welfare state ideas.

      And yes, I’m sure that there were plenty of people who liked moving into council flats and housing projects, because it was an improvement over where they lived prior. That, however, does not mean that there was not then and not now a better way to subsidize housing for the poor.

      An exchange from the sitcom Good Times might make this point best. James and Florida are arguing over whether to support Alderman Fred Davis. James, in the pro-Davis camp reminds his wife that “it wasn’t for Davis, we would have never got into the projects.” And Florida responds that, yes, that is true, but adds that “it’s about time someone got us out of the projects.”

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      • So, in your estimation, conservatives and libertarians hate hot and cold running water?

        Finally, after so many years, we get to the heart of the libertarian ideology!

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        • “So, in your estimation, conservatives and libertarians hate hot and cold running water?”

          Maybe unfair.

          But I wonder though, how hard it would be to dig up quotes from 19th century conservatives opposed to the creation of a public water supply.
          Or public sewers.
          Or building regulations that mandate hot water in apartments.

          I mean, does anyone here find it inconceivable that some 19th century Ross Douthat, David Brooks, or Rush Limbaugh would give us a long exasperated argument on why a socialized water supply is:

          (A) Contrary to God’s plan, since wells are so prominently featured in the Bible and piped water is so obviously a gateway to the debauchery of indoor bathing, as evidenced by King David.

          (B) Harmful to the moral development of character brought about by hauling buckets from the town well- as well as the bonhomie brought about by the hens clucking and gossiping good naturedly about the wellhead;

          (C) A Papist plot of Jacobite plotters aimed at bending white gentlemen over and forcing their big agenda betwixt their arsecheeks!1!

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          • But I wonder though, how hard it would be to dig up quotes from 19th century conservatives opposed to the creation of a public water supply.
            Or public sewers.
            Or building regulations that mandate hot water in apartments.

            Probably not hard at all. Just as it wouldn’t be particularly hard to dig up quote of 19th century progressives saying some real dumb shit, as well. So what? I assume that we both have better things to do with our time.

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            • Dumb shit like this?

              “Corporate cunning has developed faster than the laws of nation or state. Sooner or later unless there is an adjustment, there will be a riotous, wicked, murderous day of atonement.”
              T. Rex

              Or maybe this:
              “”Within the capitalist system all methods for raising the social productiveness of labour are brought about at the cost of the individual labourer; all means for the development of production transform themselves into means of domination over, and exploitation of, the producers; they mutilate the labourer into a fragment of a man, degrade him to the level of an appendage of a machine, destroy every remnant of charm in his work and turn it into a hated toil; they estrange him from the intellectual potentialities of the labour process in the same proportion as science is incorporated in it as an independent power; they distort the conditions under which he works, subject him during the labour process to a despot­ism the more hateful for its meanness; they transform his life time into working time and drag his wife and child beneath the wheels of the Juggernaut of Capital.”

              William Morris, artist and visionary

              Or possibly:

              “Commerce! Beneath whose poison-breathing shade

              No solitary virtue dares to spring,

              But Poverty and Wealth with equal hand

              Scatter their withering curses, and unfold

              The doors of premature and violent death,

              To pining famine and full-fed disease,

              To all that shares the lot of human life,

              Which poisoned, body and soul, scarce drags

              the chain,

              That lengthens as it goes and clanks behind.”

              Percy Bysshe Shelley

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              • Within the capitalist system all methods for raising the social productiveness of labour are brought about at the cost of the individual labourer

                Whether that qualified as dumb shit when Morris said it I’m not sure, but quoting it approvingly now, with the benefit of hindsight, certainly does.

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                • Oi…Think about some of nasty things the sainted founders of US of A did.

                  Simply, people of ever policital stripe who lived many years ago did and believed thigns we find deeply wrong now. Picking something from 100 years ago to prove people today are “bad” is pretty weak sauce. If you want it to be a solid argument you need to show how people today still believe those bad things from yesteryear.

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                • Holmes disgusts me at almost every conceivable level maybe moreso than the Scalia dissent in Lawrence v Texas.

                  I believe it was three generations of imbeciles that Holmes referred to in his obnoxious opinion in Buck v Bell. I’m sure he was including himself in the mix, at least he should have.

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                • @dave

                  I don’t know of any progressives who sincerely admire Oliver Wendell Holmes. That quote seems to come up as said, to smear liberals/progressives more than anything else.

                  This is also completely ignoring that Oliver Wendell Holmes was a Republican and appointed to the Supreme Court by a Republican. I thought Republicans liked Teddy Roosevelt?

                  The Supreme Court justices that current liberals admire are Brennan, Cardozo, Goldberg, Douglas, Black, Murphy, Warren, Ginsburg, Sotomayor, Kagan, and some like me have a real soft spot for Blackmun.

                  I don’t know where the idea came up that progressives of today are huge admirers of Oliver Wendell Holmes. Chances are is that Holmes is remembered by more conservatives than liberals.

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                      • I was running with the “you might be a redneck” thing.

                        Anyway, the argument “you can’t (falsely) yell fire in a crowded theater” was given as justification for throwing someone in prison who was handing out pamphlets comparing the military draft to slavery.

                        Whether or not you agree with the sentiment, that’s what the pamphlets said and the guy got thrown in jail for handing them out.

                        Of course, later on, Buck vs. Bell was justified on the grounds of “well, we allow the draft, don’t we?”

                        The very same policy that, it was argued, cannot be debated because to do so is like yelling fire in a crowded theater when there isn’t a fire.

                        All that to say: OWH Jr. is one of the ghosts that haunts us all (including progressive thought).

                        If the argument is that that was a hundred years ago and, besides, you didn’t have anything to do with that, that’s cool, of course. It’s totally unfair of people using those things to smear you when you didn’t even have anything to do with what happened all the way back then.

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                        • Can we use Rothbard and et al’s absurdly revisionist rejectionism and apologetics for slavery as the cause of the civil war to smear the entirety of libertarianism?

                          Just wondering…

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                          • I suppose it’d be unfair to smear the entirety of libertarianism by doing so but it strikes me as eminently fair to say “this is some of the historical baggage of your view… please explain to me what’s been done to process this baggage and to overcome in the current position as it exists.”

                            And you can learn a lot about the current position as it exists by the various responses to that question. “I don’t know who Rothbard is but if he did stuff like that, I question whether he was ever a libertarian” would be a very interesting response, don’t you think?

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                            • “I suppose it’d be unfair to smear the entirety of libertarianism by doing so but… but progressives can’t reject Holmes’ progressivism but libertarians can reject Rothbard’s libertarianism” sorta thing? So progressives still suck just as hard?

                              Sure. Have at it. We wouldn’t be doing anything useful at that point, tho you might end up feeling better about things.

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                              • “I suppose it’d be unfair to smear the entirety of libertarianism by doing so but… but progressives can’t reject Holmes’ progressivism but libertarians can reject Rothbard’s libertarianism”

                                Who were you quoting with that? It certainly wasn’t me.

                                I would say that it’s more than possible for progressives to reject Holmes’ progressivism *AND* for libertarians to reject Rothbard’s libertarianism.

                                But if you were stuck with a libertarian who yelled about how Rothbard wasn’t a libertarian and how dare you bring him up, you’d learn a lot about that particular libertarian even if you didn’t learn much about modern libertarianism, don’t you think?

                                To put it more plainly: to reject Rothbard’s libertarianism, you must first acknowledge his libertarianism. Or, I suppose, spend hours discussing the history and evolution of libertarianism and explain how Rothbard is mistakenly considered part of it.

                                I don’t think it’d be enough to say “Rothbard? How dare you?!?”

                                Or maybe I’m just speaking for myself, there.

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                                • Or maybe I’m just speaking for myself, there.

                                  This.

                                  Also, the first part of what you quoted was from you, the part after the ellipses was my interpretation of what followed.

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                                • Except that there’s a lot of libertarians that DO speak lovingly of Rothbard, or at least seem to acknowledge his work as part of the foundational canon of libertarian thought. The relationship between the late 19th and early 20th century Progressive movement and contemporary progressives pretty much begins and ends with the word “Progressive.”

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                                  • Some of Rothbard’s writings are exceptionally good. I mean, seriously good. Many of them are crap. Some of them are odious. I mean, seriously odious.

                                    He is one of the guys who was responsible for the libertarian heresy, no doubt about it.

                                    As for the relationship between the progressives of the early 20th century and the progressives of the early 21st, I think that there is a line that you can draw from them to today. I mean, you could draw a line from the progressives of 1910 to 1930 to 1950 to 1970 to 1990 to 2010. Sure, the ones from 2010 look nothing at all like the ones from 1910. They don’t look that different from the ones from 1990, though.

                                    I’d suggest that one of the main reasons is that the progressives of 1910 more or less *WON*. They got what they wanted. The people who are good with the progressives of 1910, at this point, are called “conservatives”.

                                    I mean, check out the Socialist Party Platform of 1912. We’ve adopted a *LOT* of those (no, not all). But after one battle is one, the next battle happens. They’re different because of that.

                                    You can still draw a line connecting today to yesterday, though.

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                            • What it illustrates to me is that there are, by my count, at least three distinct flavors of libertarianism. Roughly divided into left, right, and orthodox camps, depending I suppose on how you came to it as well as other politically relevant psychological traits.

                              Rothbard strikes me as being a kind of, and I know this sounds weird and contradictory, but a kind of authoritarian libertarian. In that his worldview is at least as much grounded in what we would consider conservatism as libertarianism.

                              He’s not alone. Whether he’s just pandering rightward for the nomination or what I can’t say, but Rand Paul has recently come out (or affirmed) opposition to abortion, gay marriage, and pot legalization and is proposing to raise the Pentagon budget by $190B. Doesn’t sound very libertarianish to me, but whatever.

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                              • Rothbard strikes me as being a kind of, and I know this sounds weird and contradictory, but a kind of authoritarian libertarian.

                                It’s less weird and contradictory when you take into account what he saw as having authority. It wasn’t deference to a person or the law, but to a particular kind of culture that he assumed that good people would have internalized.

                                Rule by super-ego and, of course, everyone’s would be interchangeable. Making liberty perfectly viable because no one would ever be tempted to use it in any ways that he didn’t like.

                                Authoritarianism without an authority.

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                                • Jaybird: Authoritarianism without an authority.

                                  Ahh, okay. So it’s like the dodge of natural law proponents. “It’s not me saying this. I’m just reporting on what nature/God/the universal noosphere has revealed to me.”

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                                  • The implicit assumption being that it was, in fact, revealed by nature/God/whatevs (rather than an expression of personal inclination (or, heaven forbid, being revealed by a malicious entity)) with another assumption that it’s being correctly reported after having been revealed by this whatever it is.

                                    With the added bonus of it being assumed rather than stated.

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                            • Rothbard and the Pauls both saw that libertarianism will, on its own, never be more than a fringe movement, but could become powerful when mixed with populism. Which leads to two points of interest:

                              1. Why are nativism, racism, and social conservatism the natural kinds of populism to use?

                              2. Is there a good reason that we’re asked to judge all other political philosophies on what they’ve done when in power, but libertarianism only on its ideals?

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                              • Is there a good reason that we’re asked to judge all other political philosophies on what they’ve done when in power, but libertarianism only on its ideals?

                                It’s not like we can really judge libertarianism on what it’s done in power, after all.

                                We *CAN*, however, see what happens when libertarian ideals are adopted.

                                Ending the drug war, for example, or loosening it.
                                Ending sodomy laws, for example, or loosening them.
                                Allowing Same-Sex Marriage, for example.

                                I imagine that we’ll be discussing the dissolution of Police Unions at some point in the near future.

                                (Now you should feel free to bring up the libertarian ideal of bailing out the banks that caused the financial crisis.)

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                                • Jaybird: We *CAN*, however, see what happens when libertarian ideals are adopted.

                                  Ending the drug war, for example, or loosening it.
                                  Ending sodomy laws, for example, or loosening them.
                                  Allowing Same-Sex Marriage, for example.

                                  Ummm, yeah. And you could just as easily label all those as progressive ideals and eagerly await the implementation of our economic agenda.

                                  But I doubt you will.

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                                    • Depends on the issue and how far back you want to look. And the same question can be asked of libertarians as well.

                                      For instance, it was only about three years ago that I engaged in a discussion over at BHL on the issue of SSM. I came away from that amazed at how few of the commenters actually were applauding the advances being won. It’s not that they were against SSM per se, but many were against extending marriage rights to same sex couples if it meant retaining, even temporarily, restrictions based on consanguinity, age, or number of participants.

                                      They wanted to pretend that their stance was principled, but to be frank, I came away doubtful on that score. I mean, would they object to cutting taxes in half because it’s not complete repeal? Not very damn likely.

                                      Anyway, at this point it only seems right to point out that this whole sub-thread started with a right wing swipe at contemporary progressives through comparison to the earlier variety, not by progressives swiping at libertarians for Rothbard et al.

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                                      • Anyway, at this point it only seems right to point out that this whole sub-thread started with a right wing swipe at contemporary progressives through comparison to the earlier variety, not by progressives swiping at libertarians for Rothbard et al.

                                        Exactly. Ironic how the thread proceeded given that, no?

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                                      • Anyway, at this point it only seems right to point out that this whole sub-thread started with a right wing swipe at contemporary progressives through comparison to the earlier variety, not by progressives swiping at libertarians for Rothbard et al.

                                        I suppose that that depends on how far back I’d want to look as well.

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                                        • Jaybird: I suppose that that depends on how far back I’d want to look as well.

                                          No. You don’t get to look back beyond the current conversation. If it’s not a commentating policy it ought to be. Otherwise it’s just Israelis vs Palestinians forever.

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                                            • Jaybird: So the current conversation doesn’t go back to LWA or the root comment of Saul’s but when you say it started and not before?

                                              Saul’s root comment was referencing contemporary conservatives. J.R. took it back to Johnson era public housing policy and LWA pushed it back to 19th century conservatives. From there it drifted into turn of the last century Progressives and eventually Stillwater mentioned Rothbard.

                                              Typical comment drift. I just don’t want to get into bringing up other threads in other posts like an old married couple.

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                                  • Road Scholar: And you could just as easily label all those as progressive ideals and eagerly await the implementation of our economic agenda.

                                    Part of the problem with this discussion is that none of those goals are “ideals.” They’re policy positions or reforms that arguably accord with libertarian ideals. To achieve a reform, one has to in some way or another interact with the compromised/compromising system. This is why some political theorists maintain that there is NO [edited] true libertarian (“classically liberal”) politics or political praxis: Any “politics” as such already acknowledges or participates in the implicitly coercive “state.”

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            • I’m being snarky but not just.

              Every great advance in humanity- including property rights- was fought tooth and claw by the progenitors of the contemporary American conservative movement.

              I don’t use the word feudalism loosely; I consider small government, individual liberty and free markets to be nothing more than fig leaves concealing the true nature and goal of the conservative movement.

              This is why they rally to Cliven Bundy, but stand shoulder to shoulder with the police of Ferguson.

              The defense of white property owning males is the single pole star of the movement.
              Not you personally perhaps, but of the movement that has captured half of the American governing body.

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          • But I wonder though, how hard it would be to dig up quotes from 19th century conservatives opposed to the creation of a public water supply.

            “You know nothing, John Snow!”

            (but really, the private sector does provide most the tap water in the US. Hence, ‘Water Works’ on Monopoly is a tradeable asset. Unlike, say, Free Parking or Jail)

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              • It may be ‘many’ vice ‘most’, I don’t know the exact %. But for instance: http://www.amwater.com

                Of course, it’s ‘private’ in the sense that many public utilities are technically ‘private’. The system is owned by a private company, but service level, and most importantly rates (i.e. prices), are government regulated. (in return for a de jure monopoly)

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                • Now I’m curious. From Wikipedia: “About half of American drinking water utilities, or about 26,700, are privately owned, providing water to 11% of Americans served by public water systems.” So certainly “many” could apply to the utilities themselves, but the vast majority of Americans’ drinking water is from public utilities. From a quick survey, it appears that the most common arrangement is for cities to own and operate a water utility with a separate legal identity, for separating the finances. Eg, Denver Water is described as “an independent municipal government agency” authorized by the city charter, with a board of directors appointed to staggered terms by the Mayor of Denver.

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                    • Around here, there were a couple of reasons to do this.

                      Some water supplies serve multiple communities, and a separate authority smoothed out the problems that arose there; in modern times, with multiple towns participating in school administration, this isn’t such a big deal, but back in the day, it was a serious local control issue.

                      Second, having the water district (what they’re called, sorta like an authority,) served residents in villages, but not outlying homes; a private company allowes for billing customers to finance operational costs, separating it from the property tax base. People who weren’t on the water lines had some big concerns about paying taxes to support public water systems.

                      While ‘private,’ the water districts I’m familiar with in the NE are not private in the sense a home or parcel of land is private; the water supply and equipment is owned by the district, and the town(s) appoint the trustees who manage the district; and the creation/dissolution is done by state legislatures.

                      There are problems with this sort of management; one big one is that a district’s employees are not town employees, and there’s some significant costs to benefits that would be lessened if the employee base was combined.

                      A second is transparency; it’s another public entity for residents to keep track of, and problems typically aren’t revealed for a much longer time than they are in town/city governments. (Not that the districts aren’t required to be transparent, they function under the same rules as governments, but people/reporters pretty much ignore them until after the problems occur.)

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          • “But I wonder though, how hard it would be to dig up quotes from 19th century conservatives opposed to the creation of a public water supply.
            Or public sewers.
            Or building regulations that mandate hot water in apartments.”

            Or how hard it would be to dig up quotes from 20th century Progressives:

            “The opinion was written by Justice Olive Wendell Holmes, who was known for his progressive willingness to incorporate current science into his decisions and to respond with contemporary measures to contemporary conditions. Holmes was a student of Eugenics, and he made his own opinion about the necessity of compulsory sterilization perfectly clear in the Court’s opinion, which concluded, “Three generations of imbeciles are enough.” – See more at: http://historynewsnetwork.org/article/1662#sthash.EyRDVjOi.dpuf

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          • But I wonder though, how hard it would be to dig up quotes from 19th century conservatives opposed to the creation of a public water supply.
            Or public sewers.
            Or building regulations that mandate hot water in apartments.

            Quotes from within what was understood as part of the legal mainstream? My guess is not many.

            The idea of a general police power of the states that protects public health, public safety and the general welfare was around long before the 14th Amendment and the cases that followed its ratification. If any of what you mentioned could have fallen under one of those categories, it was a no brainer.

            if you want to read something interesting and way outside the legal mainstream at the time, read Holmes pithy dissent in Lochner v New York. After you do, you’ll understand why it was a solo dissent.

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      • that was the least charitable reading of what wrote and you know it. He merely pointed one reason why many but not all British working class people did not mind the new council flats built by the British government after World War II. He did not say that conservatives and libertarians are opposed to hot and cold running water or other modern amenities. There is also less of a stigma in living in public housing in European countries than there is in the United States because public housing is open to more people in European countries so it does not necessarily carry connotations of poverty.

        After World War II, European countries were suffering from a serious housing shortage because of the war damage. According to historian David Kynaston in his book Austerity Britain, 750,000 houses were destroyed during World War II. Most of the rest that remained were primitive and lacking in amenities by mid-20th century standards. According to a 1951 housing survey, of 12.4 million surveyed dwellings in England and Wales; 1.9 million had three rooms or less, 4.8 million had no fixed bath, and 2.8 million no toilet. 38% of all houses were built before 1891. In the city of Salford, 35,000 of the 50,000 houses were over sixty years old. (David Kynaston, Austerity Britain, Chapter Their Own Private Domain).

        These were the housing conditions in the United Kingdom six years after the Second World War ended. The private sector was simply incapable of providing or building affordable houses under these circumstances to the British masses, who were less wealthy than their American counterparts. If housing was left to the private market than the tendency would be modern houses with modern amenities for the middle and upper classes and continuation of the same substandard housing for the working classes. It was the government that could build housing with modern amenities fast and fairly.

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        • Your argument for this sort of public housing in Europe is fair, but that’s not the part of Saul’s comment to which I was reacting.

          What exactly is the charitable reading of this?

          The American right-wing just finds it inconceivable that people could honestly believe in and like government services and the welfare state because they are too into their yeo yeo yeoman beliefs.

          And more to the point, why ought I be charitable to someone’s straw man?

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          • Considering the jabs made about government services from many people on the right, I’d say that it was a somewhat well-deserved counter-jab but in poor taste and a bit ahistorical because nobody was arguing that housing should be completely left to the private market after World War II except Hayek and a few others.

            Private builders have never been good at building adequate housing for the working classes and the poor. The way that the market for housing seems to work is that it seems more profitable to house a few rich people than thousands of working class people. If left to their own devices, privae would build housing that was as cheap and amenity free as possible and than stuff them to the gills to collect as much rent as they could. Government at least needs to impose certain regulations in order to prevent slums from developing if not actually build the housing themselves.

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                • You’re doing a slight of hand with the history and being deliberately obtuse about the contrary argument.

                  After turn of the 20th century urban governance initiatives to reduce slums and tenements through housing codes and occupancy rules, the progressive thought going into the New Deal era was that housing was a basic civic right, and those that could not afford their own housing – more precisely, their own *non-substandard* housing would have it built for them.

                  So what happened in a bunch of cities around the US (and I’m presuming the UK, but I don’t know the history there) created public housing authorities and built of lot of new developments.

                  This housing stock was brand new, so it was decent in that way, and it was indeed marginally better than some of the building and ad-hoc housing which was still prevalent at the time (and resemble was favelas look like today).

                  But, in the US at least, this was just about the worst thing they could have done.

                  They only built these developments near where less-well off folks were to begin with, thus concentrating poverty in these neighborhoods. The projects tended to the gargantuan, and while normally not literally Brutalistic architecturally, adopted much of the same sense of completely screwing up the human scale. (because, generally, it gave the most bang for the buck). This scale also led to wholesale leveling of an area, where even if of lot of housing was substandard, not all of it was.

                  Most importantly, right when these projects were built, automobile use and suburbanization really took off, leaving the cities with a higher percentage of public housing than the tax base would properly support. Plus, the usual public sector maintenance problem that building something leads to a nice ribbon cutting, but just keeping things in good working order brings no glory.

                  So, by the 1980s, these projects were dilapidated, filled with social ills, and lacking any political constituency.

                  Nobody who’s honest about urban policy now (including most progressives) think that public housing is a good idea. Most every city is converting them and providing subsidized housing to the previous residents distributed throughout the city.

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                  • Public housing in many European cities dates back to the 1890s. London and other cities in the UK decided that the best way to deal with slums was to tear them down and rebuild the housing themselves rather than just pass codes. A lot of the public housing took the form of semi-detached or terraced housing rather than giant apartment blocks. Giant apartment blocks became more prominent after World War II in the United Kingdom but many public houses were still semi-detached or terraced houses. On the continent, most public housing took the form of apartments or estates of apartments but most urban housing on the continent was apartment housing.

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            • The way that the market for housing seems to work is that it seems more profitable to house a few rich people than thousands of working class people.

              And when the rich have bought all the housing they want, the builders just pack up and shut it down?

              If left to their own devices, privae would build housing that was as cheap and amenity free as possible and than stuff them to the gills to collect as much rent as they could.

              You’re extrapolating from very, very expensive places like Manhattan and San Francisco, and it’s leading you wildly astray. What percentage of housing in the US do you think is the bare legal minimum in terms of size and quality? Your logic here implies that that should be the norm, but it clearly isn’t.

              The reality is that developers build very little barely-legal housing because most people are willing to pay more for bigger, better housing, enough so that it’s more profitable to build that instead.

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    • G5: I think this is more of a British thing than a European thing. Other European countries seem less censorious when it comes to children’s entertainment and allow at least as much as we do. France is almost but not quite as lenient as the Japanese are. The British really seem to believe in “monkey see, monkey do” when it comes to kid’s entertainment though.

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    • This sort of goes to my point about Ideology is Okay. The American right-wing just finds it inconceivable that people could honestly believe in and like government services and the welfare state because they are too into their yeo yeo yeoman beliefs.

      Not really. We understand perfectly well that some people like being given free stuff at others’ expense.

      Conversely, I would say that a lot of people on the left really don’t get why some people might prefer not to live that way, hence What’s the Matter With Kansas? and the rest of the head-scratching over why anyone who isn’t rich would vote against big government.

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      • Who are you talking about, who “prefer not to live that way”?

        I don’t want to pull out the You Didn’t Build That argument again, but if pressed, I will.

        Because really, I’m not aware of any sizable constituency in America who doesn’t love Big Government.

        We just disagree over whose turn it is at the teat.

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      • Brandon Berg: Conversely, I would say that a lot of people on the left really don’t get why some people might prefer not to live that way, hence What’s the Matter With Kansas? and the rest of the head-scratching over why anyone who isn’t rich would vote against big government.

        But that’s not really what’s happening is it? I mean, voting against “big” government and all. I live in Kansas, grew up there in fact, and I know these people because I’m related to a bunch of them.

        LWA has it nailed. It’s not the size of the teat but who gets to suck on it. Get any group of farmers together for any amount of time and the subject of conversation inevitably turns to, well, farming. And an integral part of that conversation, right up there with the weather and commodity prices, are federal crop insurance and price support payments. A typical welfare recipient nets a few hundred bucks a month. These guys are cashing five and six figure checks while they’re kvetching about the welfare queens.

        And of course a trillion dollar defense budget doesn’t count as “big government,” nor does the government telling you what you can smoke, who you can marry, or forced pregnancy.

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  9. [L5] Sheriff Nocco: “Even though some might say this is just a teenage prank, who knows what this teenager might have done…”

    It’s good to know that the new standard is charging people with the crimes they might have committed rather that with what they actually did. Next time we catch a kid trespassing in order to spray paint a building, let’s charge him with blowing up the building and killing everybody inside. With the, “What might he have done?” rule in effect, your only limit is your imagination!

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  10. L1: When I saw the headline “Judith Miller Recants”, I was hoping she was finally admitting how she was used by the Bush Administration to sell Gulf War II. Nope, she’s sticking to her guns on all the BS she was a conduit for, and in addition insists that she was forced to perjure herself about Scooter Libby. Honestly, I don’t believe a word she says about anything.

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  11. A1 All thanks to jeebus. Now if we can get the clovers out of the passing lane, we’d have a real improvement.

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  12. Interesting article here (and, by “interesting”, I mean “it confirms prejudices I have”) that talks about companies complaining about how nobody with the skill sets/experience they want is willing to work for the pay they’re offering.

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    • Jaybird,

      That is interesting. It leads to all sorts of BIG and perhaps open-ended questions. The thing that struck me is that it’s very similar to an article I read a while ago (one which I’ve referenced before and even cited on this site but can no longer find, dammit) expressing the same thing in a different economic sector: the building trades. Ie., the dynamics were the same – economic recovery, increase in demand for building contracting services, but no increase in wages or even hiring. That is, the increased demand didn’t correlate with an increase in employment numbers. The reason identified by the writer of that article was a reluctance of general contractors to raise their pay scale! So what looked like a shortage of skilled employees turned out to be a shortage of skilled employees willing to work for the rates employers were offering. Strange stuff, if you ask me.

      But not really. It’s only strange if you accept standard economics in its idealized form. Course, I know enough to believe that an economist will agree with me about that! :)

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      • “It’s only strange if you accept standard economics in its idealized form.”

        Really? Because what’s happening is that buyers (employers) want a product (the labor of experienced employees) at a price lower than suppliers (those employees) can provide it and still stay in business (be alive). Therefore, the buyers are not purchasing any product, and the suppliers aren’t selling any, even though there are plenty of buyers and plenty of sellers. That’s pretty much Day 1 of Econ 101.

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        • DD,

          What you said is exactly what I was getting at in the comment below: that managerial decisions cannot be separated from “market forces”. Also, that they’re always rational, even if they leave money on the table.

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    • That’s a pretty great article, corresponding with my experiences when I was job hunting. Particularly the job requirements aspect.

      I remember when I was working in Deseret, and a couple years in the job requirements for an entry-level position would have disqualified me for the job… and I was a manager. Somehow, in a time and place where you could actually expect people with coding experience to work for $10/hr and be grateful for the opportunity, HR was qualification-ratcheting us out of candidates.

      To be fair, when push came to shove, positions didn’t stay open. Requirements were worked around. And I did manage to find a job everywhere I went, until Arapaho, and in none of the cases was I the perfect fit.

      This is where H1-B’s concern me, even though I am in favor of the concept.

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      • This is where H1-B’s concern me, even though I am in favor of the concept.

        We’ve all talked about this before on this site, but what the Time article reinforces is a view I (and others) have expressed here: that the argument for liberalizing H1B1 visas as a policy is justified by a shortage orchestrated by management and not by “market forces” (insofar as managerial decisions can be divorced from the concept of market forces and assuming that borders and international policy are a fact of the world we live in).

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        • I am increasingly partial to Dave Schuler’s “Jobs clearinghouse” idea. Basically, if you want an H1-B, the government has a place where they list the jobs and reviews the applications. Then, if there is a real discrepancy, and they’re not getting the applicants, the employer gets the visas. I don’t like the idea of using the Department of Labor as an HR agency, I’m just not sure what else to do. Even apart from what we’re talking about here, there seem to be companies that are pretty openly replacing American workers with visa workers.

          This clearinghouse idea also does have the benefit of fitting very nicely with the Kansas City Plan.

          I should add that I do believe there are shortages for some skills in some parts of the country. I don’t think it’s all mythical. it’s just that current policy seems to give way too much latitude to employers with sufficient resources to basically outsource any and all training to India and China. I mean, if they can just import skills, then it’s smart business not to train people.

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          • It’s not like they do any training in India or China, though. They just contract with an outsourcing firm which claims that 100% of their employees are trained and relies on the 18-hour airplane trip and the language barrier to prevent anyone from finding out that they’re lying.

            “I’m just not sure what else to do. ”

            Wait for inflation to bring everyone’s house value back up above their loan principal so they can sell it and move to where these jobs are.

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  13. G2 results:

    84% Liberal democrat

    82% Labour

    74% Sinn Fein (!)*

    66% Conservatives

    44% UK Independence

    *Really….I’m just not that into Irish nationalism, whatever Joyce may have had to say about it. And I’m not too gung ho on the history of that party. And I wasn’t too keen on Clinton’s invitation to Mr. Adams to visit the US back in the 90s.

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  14. How many other kinds of academic departments could Brennan’s logic apply to? Many.

    So the question is not wether philosophy departments should be funded in state universities. The question is what kind of state university is it ultimately that Jason Brennan is arguing for?

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    • It’s Brennan and it’s BHL so I doubt that I’m going too far out on a limb to say the answer, ideally, would be “None.” But assuming that you are willing to admit the notion of higher education as a public good then it seems to me that a certain kind of market dynamic is already in play when students choose one course of study to the exclusion of all the other options.

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  15. Mike Schilling: Is there a good reason that we’re asked to judge all other political philosophies on what they’ve done when in power

    Its better actually to look at what they want to do, and what animates and motivates the base.

    I mean, if you talk to a conservative, you will hear lots of talk about Burkean modesty and some Jeffersonian stuff about liberty, along with market fundamentalist dogma about level playing fields.
    Which is great, because they are adamantly opposed to agricultural subsidies AND welfare, against state power over young black men AND over Wall Street bankers.

    And like Charles Pierce, for the first 4 minutes and 59 seconds I am thinking, wow, I could really get with that.

    But then I look at what the conservative base does, and what gets them really excited. Think of a stump speech that a Ted Cruz, Scott Walker, or Sarah Palin might give in an Iowa straw poll event.

    Filled with rage against those Wall Street bankers who broke the law in forging documents? Furious fist shaking at AGM or Cargill suckling at the welfare teat? Not likely.

    It isn’t correct to call this hypocrisy. Hypocrisy would be if the conservative base were somehow benefiting from ag subsidies and banking deregulation, but for 99.99% of them, they aren’t.

    The straight line that untangles these contradictions is that for conservatives, their deference to authority trumps any ideological concerns about rule of law.
    When a bank forges documents, it is undesirable and frowned upon, but its not a crime- not a real crime, like breaking a window, and the bankers themselves are not criminals, not real criminals like the guy selling loosies in New York.

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    • , If what the republicans do for the banks bothers you, then Holder’s stroking and pennies on the dollar fines must really get your dander up. One must really be blind to not see the payback for a crime well hidden in Holder’s new job and pay.

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        • , Goodness gracious no. If I gave you the impression that I did not agree with you about the republicans I am very sorry. I consider myself a semi socialist and an ardent environmentalist so I am sure you easily guess what I think of the republicans. It just happened that Holder’s new job came to my attention today. If I thought it would do the tiniest bit of good I would be angry.

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          • Sorry- My snark-o-meter was on hair trigger alert.

            I do get angry that we are constantly forced to choose between more, or better Democrats.

            Jack Markell’s article in the Atlantic today made me grind my teeth, it was so smugly 3rd Way triangulating.

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  16. It might be Saul bait, but I can’t wrap my head around [U2]. I understand the cost benefit analysis the guy’s doing of university philosophy departments, but I don’t get what it has to do with libertarianism. I could be taking the blog title too literally, but the most coherent connection I can make is: 1. tens of millions of dollars go to state funded philosophy departments, but 2. Philosophy doesn’t produce people with marketable or transferable skills, and 3. Much of that is tax money that we have no choice but to fork over. The problem is, even if I were to move back to the states and pay my share of those taxes, which per person can’t be more than pennies, I have a really hard time seeing why I should give a hoot. Or, from the standpoint of my personal liberty, more of a hoot than pretty much every other damned thing my taxes go to pay for.

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  17. C7) Having posted that on my G+, I applaud your taste, sir.

    Also, I will post this because anyone who characterizes Triple H as “some kinda French Canadian Donkey Kong” while making a comic referencing how oddly video-gamey Pro Wrestling was at the time deserves alink.

    http://thepunchlineismachismo.com/archives/comic/big-exciting-weekend

    Seriously, the three-way relationship between Peach, Mario, and Bowser alone has been something that I’ve written long posts on. At least, Ganondorf…..sometimes….has a valid reason to kidnap Zelda and there is no love lost between Link and Ganondorf so their relationship is pretty straightforward.

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      • I don’t know who Colby Cosh is.

        My understanding is that the NDP ran on raising oil royalties and spending the money on social programs; I wonder if this is a case of populism winning in a resource based ecconomy(Sarah Palin won in Alaska by running against the oil companies).

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        • He’s my go to guy for conservative Canadian politics. He’s more excited about the PC going down than upset about the NDP victory.

          It looks like the NDP is getting in mostly due to fractured opposition. They’re only getting 40% of the vote while the conservative parties combine for over half. (Right now, anyway.)

          It looks like the PC is dropping to third, so they won’t even be the opposition.

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          • Looking at the current result(about 95% of the total) it looks like the conservative parties are going to get a combined 52% of the vote and the liberal parties a combined 45%; in 2012 the conservative parties got a combined 78% to the liberal 18%; in 2008 the conservatives got a combined 60% to the liberals 35%. So there left wing parties did make gains in addition to benefiting from a conservative split.

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