Canada not a foreign country, Bugs not seen, and Irish troops in World War II and debt burdens..

Rick Perry: just read:

In an Iowa campaign event, Rick Perry told yesterday’s crowd,

“Every barrel of oil that comes out of those sands in Canada is a barrel of oil that we don’t have to buy from a foreign source,” Mr. Perry said in Clarinda, earning a loud round of enthusiastic applause…”

Canada: our 51’st state? 🙂 (he probably meant: “potentially HOSTILE foreign source”)

Is he a lush or just stupid? It isn’t easy to tell, is it? 🙂

When we talk about “national debt”, just exactly what do we mean? Yes, some countries have our debt (4 trillion, mostly in t-bills) but most is owned by Americans (example: me!).
So what of it?

The government is now deeply in debt — but the nation has not directly gotten any poorer: the public, in its role as taxpayers, now owes 500 percent of GDP, but the public, in its role as investors, now owns new assets equal to 500 percent of GDP. It’s a wash.

So where’s the problem? Well, to pay interest on that debt, the government will have to raise a lot more revenue. Again, this is a wash — the extra revenue is matched by the extra income people receive as bondholders. But tax rates will have to go way up; and because lump-sum taxes don’t exist in the real world, this means that marginal tax rates will have to go way up.

And you don’t have to be a right-winger to acknowledge that yes, very high marginal tax rates act as a disincentive to productive activity. So real GDP may well fall significantly.

This is what I mean when I say that the burden of debt is about incentives, not about having to deliver resources to other people.

Bottom line: “the government must tighten its belt just like families do” is mostly nonsense. However, if one wants to use the “family” analogy, one might argue that even if a family is broke, it makes sense to take out a loan at a low rate to fix a leaky roof, lest a main asset get ruined.

History I was mostly ignorant of Ireland’s role in World War II. It turns out that while they were on their way out of the British Commonwealth at that time, there was still a loose affiliation. Nevertheless, they remained neutral and there was some sentiment to side with the British, and even some to side with the Nazis.

Nevertheless, some Irishmen fought with the British, which was legal. But some who were in the Irish military actually deserted to fight with the British, and there were some repercussions, both official and unofficial…which last even to this day. I was completely unaware of this issue. There is a movement to try to get these guys pardoned.

I enjoyed the relevant wikipedia article.


Click on the small picture to see the larger photo at the blog Why Evolution is True.
I say that this is a consequence of evolution (natural selection in particular) but a creationist might say that “Jesus loves the bugs”. 🙂

December 29, 2011 - Posted by | 2012 election, biology, economics, economy, evolution, rick perry, science, social/political, world events

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