Jul 252012

The WSJ buries the lead in this story about the Fed:

Fed Sees Action if Growth Doesn’t Pick Up Soon – WSJ.com.

You have to go almost to page 2 to find out what action the Fed is talking about.   Up until the last part of paragraph 4 it keeps us in suspense, speaking vaguely of “taking new steps” and “moving” and “taking actions.”

Only then do you learn that printing money to buy more securities is at the top of the list, followed by lowering interest rates even closer toward zero than they already are.

It makes one wonder if it’s not so much that the WSJ doesn’t have editors who can make sure that the main point comes first in the article, but that the Fed is not very proud of what it’s about to do.


Jul 162012

Republican governors, eager for new revenue to ease budget strains, are dropping their longtime opposition to imposing sales taxes on online purchases, a significant political shift that could soon bring an end to tax-free sales on the Internet.

via Tax Break Online Nears End – WSJ.com.

I’m not opposed to taxes on internet sales.  It’s only fair to level the playing field between brick-and-mortar stores and those where the customer doesn’t get to handle the merchandise.

However, this proposal is not ready for prime time.

For one thing, the governors have not yet identified which taxes will be cut to pay for these increases.  New revenue is fine, but old revenue needs to be cut to pay for it.

The other is that a formula and mechanism needs to be worked out to determine the tax rate.  In order to maintain tax competition between states, one possibility is to make it an average of three tax rates:  1) the tax rate where the buyer lives.  2) the tax rate where the seller is located. 3) the tax rate where the goods are shipped from.

Jul 162012

Here’s a grain of salt to use when reading the newspapers:

Quote approval is standard practice for the Obama campaign, used by many top strategists and almost all midlevel aides in Chicago and at the White House — almost anyone other than spokesmen who are paid to be quoted. (And sometimes it applies even to them.) It is also commonplace throughout Washington and on the campaign trail.

The Romney campaign insists that journalists interviewing any of Mitt Romney’s five sons agree to use only quotations that are approved by the press office. And Romney advisers almost always require that reporters ask them for the green light on anything from a conversation that they would like to include in an article.

via Latest Word on the Campaign Trail? I Take It Back – NYTimes.com.

Jul 152012

If the daily catch in their social safety nets isn’t enough, they go out with seines and gill nets to get those who escaped.

The USDA’s scrub of the novelas from their website came on the heels of a Daily Caller series highlighting USDA’s stated mission and campaign to get more people on food stamps.Thursday, Alabama Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions, ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee, slammed the USDA for its aggressive outreach tactics.

via USDA removes Spanish food stamp soap operas from website | The Daily Caller.

Jul 142012

Time for a Leviathan Ankle-Biter Award.

Then Uber fought back. On Monday CEO Travis Kalanick posted on the company’s website that it was “hard for us to believe that an elected body would choose to keep prices of a transportation service artificially high,” adding that Uber was “seriously concerned about punitive government intervention in a well functioning marketplace.” He asked customers to sign a petition and contact city council members.And contact they did. Within hours, inboxes were flooded with thousands of email complaints. Uber didn’t post a form letter on its website, so all of the emails were personally composed by consumers.

via Review & Outlook: D.C. Cab—the Revolution – WSJ.com.

Jul 102012

The Fed’s view is that by raising interest rates enough, it can stop any inflation. True, but not entirely relevant. Will the politicians, the public, business and labor accept the necessary level of interest rates?

via Allan Meltzer: What’s Wrong With the Federal Reserve? – WSJ.com.

What it can do and what it will do: two different things.

Jul 092012

Having destroyed families and a work ethic for millions of Americans, these government policies have also all but destroyed Community.

via Government Kills Community | OTNNOwn The Narrative.

My comment:  I have been trying for years to get my fellow conservatives to understand this and care about it, but with very little success. It took me a long time to understand it myself, though.