http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/22/stocks-socialized-us-countries-reagan_n_882270.html Ahem: American traders aren’t likely to take kindly to the suggestion that big government might be good for the stock market. But data from a paper on the job- and income-growth of top earners shows that stock prices in some socialized countries, relative to themselves and adjusted for inflation, have done considerably better than those in the U.S over the last two and a half decades. Specifically, during the twenty five years after Ronald Reagan took office — a pro-market honeymoon that Ryan Chittum of the Columbia Journalism Reviewthis week termed “the ascent of laissez-faire economic policies” — French stock prices have performed significantly better than Americans ones, according to the report by Jon Bakija, Adam Cole, and Bradley Heim. A further examination of the 39-year period extending from the end of the Nixon administration until 2008 shows the Swedish economy, known for its high taxes and heavy regulation, growing at a significantly higher rate than the US. The authors conclude that big government might not actually stand in contradiction to a productive economy: “Countries with typically high levels of government involvement in the economy, such as Sweden, Denmark and Canada, do not appear to have experienced stifled economic growth relative to [...]
I came across a very insightful piece that is much more articulate in nature than some of the rants that are spewed from my mouth and keyboard on most occasions. It was posted at my craziest of relatives favorite source of communisms secret plot to overtake the United States of America, the Huffington Post and was penned by Sandy Goodman a retired producer from NBC and currenlty a free-lance writer, it is informative stuff, with a good detailed historical analyis of right-wing PR tactics. Check it out here http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sandy-goodman/republicans-the-single-gr_b_881444.html The obstruction strategy that was used by so many of the GOP Senate Caucaus could still be turned into a very influential election talking point for liberals. Instead of the emotional outrage we express with their lack of Constutional accountabiltiy despite their outlandish claims of being the party that embodies the true spirit of the American spirit and those that authored our founding document. If their hypocricy could be pointed out on a cold caluculated level, with attention being placed upon the fact that if Obama’s policies were so bad for America, and they would cause American’s to lose their jobs, homes, freedom insert your favorite ridiculous line here, then why [...]
By Michael Morisy June 22nd, 2011 Even after dozens of rounds of layoffs and promises of cutbacks state employment continued to be a growth industry in Massachusetts through the recession, according to analysis of data from the Comptroller of the Commonwealth and from the Human Resources Division. Several state departments, after a dozen or more layoffs, actually ended up with an increased headcount… Read MUCH more (including snazzy graphics) here.
A couple of days ago the Boston Globe published an article “Carroll Center lauds work of its forced-out leader.” The article clearly states that the Carroll Center board made “no finding of harassment.” In brief, Mike Festa resigned from his position as President of the Carroll Center for the Blind last March. The Globe published a front page story that has been described as a “horribly distorted story of a good man.” Two months later the Carroll Center reached a financial settlement with Mike, The Globe article states, “I engaged counsel and we negotiated a settlement for my claim of defamation in terms that I’m satisfied with and are fair and reasonable,’’ Festa said. More than three months after the original article, and more than a month after the Carroll Center official statement, the Globe published their article. The first misleading article that was published was front page, above the fold. The second article was Metro section front page, below the fold. Unfortunately what we saw here I think is typical of what we see happening all too often in the press. There is a rush to publish bad news, but they are slow to publish any updates or clarification. [...]
From Pioneer Executive Director Jim Stergios For the past several months, on radio, in newspapers and the blogosphere, we have been engaging in a debate with you and the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development on how to craft the right economic development strategy for Massachusetts. I know that you personally want to get this right. We have to date, however, not seen real steps to address the issues that matter most to businesses. In a world where the news cycle focuses on daily and monthly happenings, Pioneer believes its role is to drive a public conversation and a greater sense of urgency about business and job creation. Pioneer has directed significant effort to this issue, producing a seven-part series on job creation trends in Massachusetts since 1990. In July, we will be releasing a new report, Revving up the Massachusetts Job Engine, that, we hope, will inform this discussion. We have chosen the long term in order to focus on real changes in our state’s economy rather than political discussions. What we have discovered must be of concern to anyone interested in the commonwealth’s economic future and prosperity. Read the rest of the letter here.
Via TPM. Al Gore writes for Rolling Stone on what a crushing disappointment this president has been — only on the most crucial issue on the planet. Barack Obama’s approach to the climate crisis represents a special case that requires careful analysis. His election was accompanied by intense hope that many things in need of change would change. Some things have, but others have not. Climate policy, unfortunately, is in the second category. Why? First of all, anyone who honestly examines the incredible challenges confronting President Obama when he took office has to feel enormous empathy for him: the Great Recession, with the high unemployment and the enormous public and private indebtedness it produced; two seemingly interminable wars; an intractable political opposition whose true leaders — entertainers masquerading as pundits — openly declared that their objective was to ensure that the new president failed; a badly broken Senate that is almost completely paralyzed by the threat of filibuster and is controlled lock, stock and barrel by the oil and coal industries; a contingent of nominal supporters in Congress who are indentured servants of the same special interests that control most of the Republican Party; and a ferocious, well-financed and dishonest [...]
As I noted on this date two years ago, but think bears repeating, “frank exchanges of views” on political subjects, as diplomats say, is not a recent phenomenon. The Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities reminds readers that on this day in 1768: James Otis, Jr. gave a characteristically fiery speech to his fellow legislators in Boston. He referred to the British House of Commons as a gathering of “button-makers, horse jockey gamesters, pensioners, pimps, and whore-masters.” The colony’s royal governor denounced Otis’s tirade as the most “insolent. . . treasonable declamation that perhaps was ever delivered.” Otis’s speech in June 1768 was one of many that attacked Parliament for its efforts to squeeze more revenue from the American colonies. His insistence that “a man’s house is his castle” and later that there be “no taxation without representation” remain etched in our collective memory long after his name, and his role in the events leading up to the Revolution, have been forgotten. For more on historic parallels to today, including Women of the Tea Party, use of the filibuster to thwart progressive legislation, class warfare on the right, and the “best days behind us” theme, click here. (Otis, incidentally, would have [...]
WBUR’s online health care blog, “CommonHealth,” has a flashy headline article today titled Massachusetts Attorney General Drops Health Reform Bombshell. What’s the bombshell? That the state’s proposal to control health care costs by moving people into accountable care organizations (ACOs) is unlikely to work, because patients who are currently covered by similar arrangements receive care that as just as expensive as everyone else.
Hull Democrat, Steve May has filed the papers necessary to run for the Plymouth and Norfolk Senate Seat with the Office of Campaign and Political Finance. May is the Executive Director of the Forum on Genetic Equity, a non-profit organization addressing genetic discrimination and privacy issues. When asked about his campaign May replied: “For too long, the people of the South Shore have been denied a seat at the table; whether discussing, local aid, transportation funding or education dollars the people of this district have been underserved. When you compare Hedlund’s ability to deliver to members of the State Senate with similar seniority he falls well short.” May continued: “By any standard Bob Hedlund’s leadership has been inept. Every important decision made in the last several years has been made in the Senate Caucus room, we don’t have a seat at the table—not being present has real consequences for us and we don’t have the luxury of not being at the table in these times…” Previous to his work at the Forum, May has worked in a variety of capacities at the state level, having served as National Director of State Affairs for the Hemophilia Federation of America, a Political [...]
(Cross posted at Left in Lowell) OK, it seems that the blog [LeftInLowell] has been a little slower as of late. Thankfully, Jack has added his own special blend of herbs and spices to our recipe. But it still feels like it could use some more frequent posting lately. Toward addressing that end (in consultation with the landlord) I’ve decided to add my own flavors to the mix. I’ve only posted on the front page a few times on the blog here, having posted a bit at BlueMassGroup. I have, however been very active sharing links I find interesting on Facebook and over email. It occurred to me that I could take a cue from what atrios does occasionally (he used to do it more) and offer the links with a minimum of commentary. So here it is, the first of what will probably be a regular occurrence that we’ll call “The Mr.’s Corner”. You’ll find I tend to follow more national stories and like many posters on the internet you’ll find some sources for items of interest tend to be visited more often than others. For today, I apologize to people who follow me on Facebook for the redundancies [...]