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FDR vs JFK

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Poll Question: Which American presdient commonly apriviated into 3 letters is best?
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12 [66.67%]
6 [33.33%]
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thellama73 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote thellama73 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: FDR vs JFK
    Posted: November 12 2012 at 22:45
Anyway, I am not arguing that every dime taxed or borrowed would be spent wisely elsewhere. I am arguing that, since taxation reduces how much money people have to spend, they will on average spend less than they would in the absence of taxation. And I am arguing that some of the money that goes towards government bonds would go towards other useful things, not all of it. I don't see how anyone could disagree with those points.

This means that it is impossible to increase government spending in a vacuum with affecting consumption, investment and exports. This means that an increase in government spending will have a smaller affect on GDP than that equation would lead you to believe, but they never tell you that in economics classes, which I think is terrible.

Personally, I am skeptical that this effect is positive at all, because i believe that markets allocated resources more efficiently than governments, but even if I am wrong, then the amount of government spending would need to be vastly greater than what is typically proposed to correct for contractions in the economy. Raising that amount of money through either borrowing or taxation is problematic, however, as people only have so much that you can tax and there is only so much you can borrow before interest rates go up and you face.

I just think it's a very meddlesome and inefficient solution to a problem that will correct itself more quickly if left alone.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote smartpatrol Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 12 2012 at 23:43
Oh my God, what did I start?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote King of Loss Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 12 2012 at 23:54
FDR, cause he conquered most of Western Europe and Japan, the two other competitors to the US industrial base at that time and ushered a long time of US dominance throughout the world.


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Post Options Post Options   Quote Triceratopsoil Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 13 2012 at 00:00
Originally posted by thellama73

no president has ever been worse than FDR.



Bush jr?


Edited by Triceratopsoil - November 13 2012 at 03:03

[QUOTE=Vompatti]I wouldn't put a Warr guitar in my vagina.[/QUOTE]
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Atavachron Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 13 2012 at 00:43
  ^ Hear, hear

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Epignosis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 13 2012 at 06:07
Originally posted by thellama73

Anyway, I am not arguing that every dime taxed or borrowed would be spent wisely elsewhere. I am arguing that, since taxation reduces how much money people have to spend, they will on average spend less than they would in the absence of taxation. And I am arguing that some of the money that goes towards government bonds would go towards other useful things, not all of it. I don't see how anyone could disagree with those points.



Let's not forget the underlying assumption that government spending is somehow more effectual or efficient than any other spending. 

Briefly, it is not, mainly because it is easy to be a poor steward of other people's money.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote thellama73 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 13 2012 at 07:20
Originally posted by smartpatrol

Oh my God, what did I start?


You should know better than to even mention anything remotely political around here, unless you want long, libertarian diatribes hurled at you. Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Quote HarbouringTheSoul Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 13 2012 at 07:25
Originally posted by thellama73

Anyway, I am not arguing that every dime taxed or borrowed would be spent wisely elsewhere. I am arguing that, since taxation reduces how much money people have to spend, they will on average spend less than they would in the absence of taxation. And I am arguing that some of the money that goes towards government bonds would go towards other useful things, not all of it. I don't see how anyone could disagree with those points.

I don't. That should be obvious. The question is: What about the money that otherwise wouldn't be efficiently spend? If I'm not mistaken, Keynesian economics argue that in certain situations decisions that make sense on an individual level can hurt the overall economy. The idea then is that the government, because it operates at a macro-economic level, can identify these problems and correct them through purposeful spending. I don't believe that Keynesians would advocate increased government spending in just about any situation. Only when the free market is unable to reach equilibrium on its own. And again, if I'm not mistaken, critics of Keynesian economics disagree that such a situation exists.

Originally posted by thellama73

This means that an increase in government spending will have a smaller affect on GDP than that equation would lead you to believe, but they never tell you that in economics classes, which I think is terrible.

Well, let's blame awful economics classes then. I vaguely remember reading critical thoughts on both FDR and Keynesian economics in school, but our teacher was utterly unable to comprehend anything about economics beyond the most basic ideas, so this kind of fell by the wayside. As did many other things. Economics was the only class I ever had where I had a better understanding of the subject than my teacher despite knowing virtually nothing.

Originally posted by thellama73

I just think it's a very meddlesome and inefficient solution to a problem that will correct itself more quickly if left alone.

Wasn't the whole idea of Keynesian economics born out of a situation where the Great Depression stubbornly refused to fix itself, despite what all economists at the time believed?

Originally posted by Epignosis

Let's not forget the underlying assumption that government spending is somehow more effectual or efficient than any other spending. 

Briefly, it is not, mainly because it is easy to be a poor steward of other people's money.

Wait a minute. If the government collects a person's money through taxes, it stops being his money and becomes the government's money. The government isn't a steward of anybody else's money. The idea is that sometimes macro-economic decisions can be more effective than micro-economic ones. Thus, the government should collect money that would otherwise be misallocated and spend it where it makes sense. Whether or not that works is up for debate.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote thellama73 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 13 2012 at 07:36
Originally posted by HarbouringTheSoul


I don't. That should be obvious. The question is: What about the money that otherwise wouldn't be efficiently spend? If I'm not mistaken, Keynesian economics argue that in certain situations decisions that make sense on an individual level can hurt the overall economy. The idea then is that the government, because it operates at a macro-economic level, can identify these problems and correct them through purposeful spending. I don't believe that Keynesians would advocate increased government spending in just about any situation. Only when the free market is unable to reach equilibrium on its own. And again, if I'm not mistaken, critics of Keynesian economics disagree that such a situation exists.


No one disputes that market failures such as externalities exist. Not even the most die hard Austrian school economist disputes that. We just think that the solution is worse than the original problem.

Originally posted by HarbouringTheSoul


Wasn't the whole idea of Keynesian economics born out of a situation where the Great Depression stubbornly refused to fix itself, despite what all economists at the time believed?
.


No not really. Hoover started efforts to "fix" the economy pretty much right from the get go, and FDR expanded them. The recession of 1920, which was extremely deep, snapped back without intervention in a year and a half.

Originally posted by HarbouringTheSoul


Wait a minute. If the government collects a person's money through taxes, it stops being his money and becomes the government's money. The government isn't a steward of anybody else's money. The idea is that sometimes macro-economic decisions can be more effective than micro-economic ones. Thus, the government should collect money that would otherwise be misallocated and spend it where it makes sense. Whether or not that works is up for debate.


The point is that the people who make the decisions about how the money is spent do not get to personally keep what is left over, as you do with your own paycheck, so there is no incentive for them to be careful with it.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote HarbouringTheSoul Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 13 2012 at 15:32
Originally posted by thellama73

No one disputes that market failures such as externalities exist. Not even the most die hard Austrian school economist disputes that. We just think that the solution is worse than the original problem.

Why? I understand if you're skeptical about its effectiveness, but the idea that it makes things worse seems to be quite odd to me. The principle seems quite plausible: The government identifies a market failure and allocates it own spending to help fix it. Unless the government fails to do that the correctly, I see no reason why this should make the situation worse.

Originally posted by thellama73

No not really. Hoover started efforts to "fix" the economy pretty much right from the get go, and FDR expanded them. The recession of 1920, which was extremely deep, snapped back without intervention in a year and a half.

I guess I have some reading up to do on that matter. But I'm skeptical about the idea that because one recession snapped back quickly, another would have done the same. If there's anything I've learned about economics, it's that it's a complex and fairly unpredictable field. One recession isn't necessarily like the other.

Originally posted by thellama73

The point is that the people who make the decisions about how the money is spent do not get to personally keep what is left over, as you do with your own paycheck, so there is no incentive for them to be careful with it.

Politicians are paid for making these decisions, and the effects that their decisions have on the economy strongly influence whether or not they get re-elected. Isn't that incentive enough to be careful? I find it absurd that a politician would think "Oh well, nothing's at stake for me here so I might as well just do as I please".
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Epignosis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 13 2012 at 16:26
Originally posted by HarbouringTheSoul



Originally posted by thellama73



Originally posted by Epignosis



Let's not forget the underlying assumption that government spending is somehow more effectual or efficient than any other spending. 

Briefly, it is not, mainly because it is easy to be a poor steward of other people's money.


The point is that the people who make the decisions about how the money is spent do not get to personally keep what is left over, as you do with your own paycheck, so there is no incentive for them to be careful with it.

Politicians are paid for making these decisions, and the effects that their decisions have on the economy strongly influence whether or not they get re-elected. Isn't that incentive enough to be careful? I find it absurd that a politician would think "Oh well, nothing's at stake for me here so I might as well just do as I please".


No voter I've ever spoken with says, "I am voting to reelect X because he is a competent steward of our resources."

When a large segment of the voting population is receiving benefits from the government but not investing in it, they generally do not care how much of other people's money is wasted or squandered as long as their own benefits (or the benefits of those they know) are not being reduced.

In 2010, federal programs wasted $125 billion. 







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Post Options Post Options   Quote Guldbamsen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 13 2012 at 16:30
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Post Options Post Options   Quote thellama73 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 13 2012 at 16:34
Originally posted by HarbouringTheSoul


Why? I understand if you're skeptical about its effectiveness, but the idea that it makes things worse seems to be quite odd to me. The principle seems quite plausible: The government identifies a market failure and allocates it own spending to help fix it. Unless the government fails to do that the correctly, I see no reason why this should make the situation worse.


As you rightly point out, the economy is a very complex thing. I think it takes great hubris to assume that a few people can know what is best for a system that involves millions of individual decisions a day. The nature of government is that it works very slowly. By the time it identifies a problem, agrees on a solution, and implements it, conditions will have changed to such an extent that the impact will be at best unpredictable. I just don't think members of government are nimble or wise enough to be able to do these things. You are right that the theory is correct, but in practice it is too delicate an operation for so large and clumsy an institution. In theory you could throw a die so as to get the same number every time, but the amount of control required is beyond our capabilities.

Originally posted by HarbouringTheSoul


Politicians are paid for making these decisions, and the effects that their decisions have on the economy strongly influence whether or not they get re-elected. Isn't that incentive enough to be careful? I find it absurd that a politician would think "Oh well, nothing's at stake for me here so I might as well just do as I please".


No, they don't think like that, you're right. It's more subtle than that. They are just not as careful to find the best use of the money. Think about when a company pays for your business trip. Do you spend days researching the cheapest flights and the best hotel bargains, or do you just take something easy and fast because it's not your money anyway? Sure, it's important that your company not waste money so that it does well and you can keep your job, but on an individual level, you cut corners because every penny is not coming out of your personal pocket.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote thellama73 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 13 2012 at 16:38
Originally posted by HarbouringTheSoul


Originally posted by thellama73

No not really. Hoover started efforts to "fix" the economy pretty much right from the get go, and FDR expanded them. The recession of 1920, which was extremely deep, snapped back without intervention in a year and a half.

I guess I have some reading up to do on that matter. But I'm skeptical about the idea that because one recession snapped back quickly, another would have done the same. If there's anything I've learned about economics, it's that it's a complex and fairly unpredictable field. One recession isn't necessarily like the other.


And I'm skeptical that it wouldn't have done the same. You're operating from the null hypothesis that it is both necessary and possible for government's to correct economic fluctuations. To me, this is a positive statement that needs proof. I have never seen anything to indicate that this is in fact the case.

We have had deep recessions that have snapped back quickly with no government intervention. We have never had a deep recession that snapped back quickly with lots of government intervention. Why do I have to prove my viewpoint? Shouldn't you have to prove yours?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote stonebeard Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 14 2012 at 10:57
There's a Newsweek special edition out now (went into Barnes and Noble because I had time to kill) about the greatest presidents. I don't know If I can remember them all, but there were ten. Among them:

FDR
Teddy
JFK
Lyndon Johnson
Ronald Reagan
Barack Obama
Bill Clinton
Woodrow Wilson

Maybe it was about "modern" presidents, because hey lopsided.

Anyway, I thought of all you guys. Heart
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Post Options Post Options   Quote thellama73 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 14 2012 at 10:59
Originally posted by stonebeard

There's a Newsweek special edition out now (went into Barnes and Noble because I had time to kill) about the greatest presidents. I don't know If I can remember them all, but there were ten. Among them:

FDR
Teddy
JFK
Lyndon Johnson
Ronald Reagan
Barack Obama
Bill Clinton
Woodrow Wilson

Maybe it was about "modern" presidents, because hey lopsided.

Anyway, I thought of all you guys. Heart


There's a tendency to equate "great" with "accomplished." Those presidents all certainly accomplished a lot (except for Bill Clinton) but are all accomplishments necessarily good? My favorite presidents were all good stewards who didn't do too much to screw things up.


Edited by thellama73 - November 14 2012 at 11:00
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Post Options Post Options   Quote The Dark Elf Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 10 2012 at 21:21
I'll vote for FDR. Since the mere mention of his name sends current Republicans into paroxysms of neo-con rabidity, it is obvious he served the country well. I regard him highly.
Please pay a visit to my blog...The Dark Elf File...a slighty skewed journal of music reviews, literary comment, fan-fiction and interminable essays.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Epignosis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 10 2012 at 21:28
Originally posted by The Dark Elf

I'll vote for FDR. Since the mere mention of his name sends current Republicans into paroxysms of neo-con rabidity, it is obvious he served the country well. I regard him highly.


Feel better, bro?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote The Dark Elf Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 10 2012 at 21:57
Originally posted by Epignosis

Originally posted by The Dark Elf

I'll vote for FDR. Since the mere mention of his name sends current Republicans into paroxysms of neo-con rabidity, it is obvious he served the country well. I regard him highly.


Feel better, bro?


Never felt bad in the first place. How about you?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote thellama73 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 10 2012 at 22:27
Originally posted by The Dark Elf

I'll vote for FDR. Since the mere mention of his name sends current Republicans into paroxysms of neo-con rabidity, it is obvious he served the country well. I regard him highly.


Why do liberals hurl the word neo-con around as an insult? Neo-cons are closer to Democrats in ideology than classical conservatives. Furthermore, I don't know anyone on this board who is a neo-con or espouses neo-con principles. Could it be that they don't know what words mean?
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