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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
Number of posts: 51,720

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Stiglitz: Greece didn’t fail-Austerity failed -It’s immoral not to give people/nations a fresh start

Opinion: Stiglitz says Greece didn’t fail; austerity failed

By Joseph E. Stiglitz
Published: Feb 3, 2015 10:09 a.m. ET


Greece largely succeeded in following the dictate set by the troika (the European Commission the ECB, and the IMF): it converted a primary budget deficit into a primary surplus. But the contraction in government spending has been predictably devastating: 25% unemployment, a 22% fall in gross domestic product since 2009, and a 35% increase in the debt-to-GDP ratio.

And now, with the anti-austerity Syriza party’s overwhelming election victory, Greek voters have declared that they have had enough.

So, what is to be done? First, let us be clear: Greece could be blamed for its troubles if it were the only country where the troika’s medicine failed miserably. But Spain had a surplus and a low debt ratio before the crisis, and it, too, is in depression.

If Europe says no to Greek voters’ demand for a change of course,
it is saying that democracy is of no importance.

What is needed is not structural reform within Greece and Spain so much as structural reform of the eurozone’s design and a fundamental rethinking of the policy frameworks that have resulted in the monetary union’s spectacularly bad performance.


YES!!! After story of Detroit man walking 21 miles a day goes viral, his life is about to change

A Downriver car dealership offered to give him a 2014 Chevrolet Cruz or Sonic.
"He gets to choose,"
said Angela Osborne, customer service specialist at Rodgers Chevrolet in Woodhaven.
"We were just impressed with his determination," Osborne said


A story about a Detroit man who commutes about 21 miles a day on foot to and from work has spurred reaction from across the nation, including social media fund-raisers that have netted more than $80,000 in donations as of 6:30 p.m. Monday.

Because buses don't cover the full distance between James Robertson's home in Detroit and his job in Rochester Hills, he walks about eight miles headed to work and about 13 miles home, five days a week. His story — told by Bill Laitner in Sunday's Detroit Free Press — has inspired hundreds to offer money to buy him a car, pay his insurance and to provide professional help in managing the donations.

Robertson said Sunday he was flattered by the attention he'd gotten for his arduous commutes after the Free Press published a front-page story about him -- and amazed that complete strangers would respond so generously, some by offering to buy him a new car and others offering to give him one.

"Are you serious?" he said to a reporter after hearing of one crowd-funding effort alone that, by early Sunday night, had raised $30,000 — $25,000 more than the goal of the originator, a Wayne State University student.


Vaccines Work!


Hillary Clinton's Poetic Response To Anti-Vaxxers

Hillary ClintonVerified account
The science is clear: The earth is round, the sky is blue, and #vaccineswork. Let's protect all our kids.

Nancy Reagan Turned Down Rock Hudson’s Plea For Help Nine Weeks Before He Died

Nancy Reagan Turned Down Rock Hudson’s Plea For Help Nine Weeks Before He Died


Although more than 5,500 people had died from the disease by the start of 1985, the government had taken few significant steps toward addressing the disease — with the Reagan administration recommending a $10 million cut in AIDS spending down to $86 million in its federal budget proposal released in February 1985.

And so, Hudson traveled to France, hoping to see Dr. Dominique Dormant, a French army doctor who had secretly treated him for AIDS the past fall. Dormant, though, was unable to get the actor transferred to the military hospital. Initially, the doctor wasn’t even able to get permission to see Hudson at the American Hospital.


One key part of this story, though, has never been told until now — not discussed at the time and lost in piles of paperwork from the Reagan administration. As Hudson lay deathly ill in the hospital, his publicist, Olson, sent a desperate telegram to the Reagan White House pleading for help with the transfer:

“Only one hospital in the world can offer necessary medical treatment to save life of Rock Hudson or at least alleviate his illness,” Olson wrote. Although the commanding officer had denied Hudson admission to the French military hospital initially, Olson wrote that they believed “a request from the White House … would change his mind.”

First Lady Nancy Reagan turned down the request.


USA no more...

Rand Paul: Parents ‘OWN’ Children, Not the State, So Vaccines Should Be Voluntary

Parents “own” children? What sort of libertarian believes human beings are property?


Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) doubled down on his position that most vaccines should be voluntary, suggesting Monday that mandated immunization is an example of government overreach.

“The state doesn’t own your children,” Paul said in an interview with CNBC’s “Closing Bell.” “Parents own the children, and it is an issue of freedom and public health.”


In a heated interview with CNBC host Kelly Evans, Paul expressed support for vaccination but bristled at the idea that it should be mandatory.

“I guess being for freedom would be really unusual,” he said sarcastically at the start of the exchange.

Paul also acknowledged hearing about cases in which healthy kids were left with “profound mental disorders” after being vaccinated.


just like abortion. oh. wait. RT @Olivianuzzi:
What Rand Paul's press office is saying about his vaccine comments:

The City That Outlawed Free Food

Michelle Chen on February 2, 2015 - 12:25 PM ET

Homeless advocate Arnold Abbott, 90, serves food to the homeless with the help of volunteers on November 5, 2014, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

Governing public space often boils down to basic social discipline. Some cities try to reduce littering by removing trash cans—thus limiting people’s options for tossing garbage in public. And some cities now apply this rationale to homelessness: by passing laws that bar homeless people from public places. Fort Lauderdale has taken this social engineering to its logical extreme by restricting “food distribution,” effectively giving those who help the homeless no place to feed them—because all that free food only encourages public displays of hunger.

But Fort Lauderdale’s Food Not Bombs activists say the real crime is a ban on acts of public generosity. The punk-inspired grassroots group just bit back with a lawsuit fighting for their right to engage in weekly demonstrations to promote peace and social welfare, and to illustrate this communal ethos by distributing morsels to bystanders in need. They assert that their modest gesture in Stranahan Park is an exercise in free expression.

Fort Lauderdale’s ordinance restricting food distribution in public was passed last October in an effort to, according to city officials, manage use of the park, deter behavior that “enables” homelessness and to “ensure food safety and health”—evidently by keeping free food safely out of the hands of the hungry.

But the city made international headlines by nabbing an activist with a local organization, fittingly called Love thy Neighbor, as they distributed meals. The 90-year-old humanitarian Arnold Abbott proclaimed at the time, “you cannot sweep the homeless under a rug…. There is no rug large enough for that.”



Sweet or creepy?

Sweet or creepy? Bill Belichick celebrates Super Bowl win with passionate father-daughter kiss


Obama plans to tax US companies-Apple/Microsoft/Gen'l Elec Would Face Bills Of 10bn+ On Offshore $$$

Barack Obama sets out plan to tax US companies on $2tn profits held abroad
Apple, Microsoft and General Electric would face bills of $10bn or more under president’s budget proposal for one-off levy plus 19% tax on offshore cash

Barack Obama’s plan to force US multinationals to pay tax on the more than $2tn (£1.3tn) of profits they hold offshore could boost US GDP by 1.5%, with major corporate names such as Apple and Microsoft facing bills of $10bn each.

In his budget presented on Monday, the president set out proposals to make companies pay a 14% one-off levy on their cash held offshore followed by a 19% tax on future profits earnings.

Andrew Hunter, economist at consultancy Capital Economics, said the one-off tax could raise at least $238bn and would increase US GDP by about 1.5% if it was used to fund new infrastructure. He said the stock of earnings held abroad by US firms has increased sixfold since 2002 to $2.1tn, led by companies in the technology and pharmaceutical sectors.

“The biggest holders of foreign cash within these sectors, such as Pfizer, Apple and Microsoft, would face payments of around $10bn each,” said Hunter, adding that the permanent tax on future foreign profits could raise up to $600bn over the next 10 years.


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