Ronald Radosh – Commies: A Journey Through the Old Left, the New Left and the Leftover Left

Behind on my organic food blogging

.@DuncanGarnerNZ shows @NZFirst caucus aren’t puppets @sst_nz

Duped into War on Plastic

Science Matters

Step aside Polar Bear, It’s Turtle Time!

Everyday now, everywhere in the media someone else is lamenting the presence of plastics and proposing ways to end straws and other plastic items.  Terence Corcoran in Financial Post explains how we got here:  How green activists manipulated us into a pointless war on plastic  Excerpts in italics with my bolds.

The disruptive Internet mass-persuasion machine controlled by the major corporate tech giants, capable of twisting and manipulating the world’s population into believing concocted stories and fake news, is at it again, this time spooking billions of people into panic over plastic. Except…hold on: Those aren’t big greedy corporations and meddling foreign governments flooding the blue planet with alarming statistics of microplastics in our water and gross videos of turtles with straws stuck up their noses and dead birds with bellies stuffed with plastic waste.

As Earth Day/Week 2018 came to a…

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E-cigarette taxation: Lessons from “sin taxes”

The Economist points out:

Smoking, in contrast, probably saves taxpayers money. Lifelong smoking will bring forward a person’s death by about ten years, which means that smokers tend to die just as they would start drawing from state pensions. In a study published in 2002 Kip Viscusi, an economist at Vanderbilt University who has served as an expert witness on behalf of tobacco companies, estimated that even if tobacco were untaxed, Americans could still expect to save the government an average of 32 cents for every pack of cigarettes they smoke.

Truth on the Market

The Economist takes on “sin taxes” in a recent article, “‘Sin’ taxes—eg, on tobacco—are less efficient than they look.” The article has several lessons for policy makers eyeing taxes on e-cigarettes and other vapor products.

Historically, taxes had the key purpose of raising revenues. The “best” taxes would be on goods with few substitutes (i.e., inelastic demand) and on goods deemed to be luxuries. In Wealth of Nations Adam Smith notes:

Sugar, rum, and tobacco are commodities which are nowhere necessaries of life, which are become objects of almost universal consumption, and which are therefore extremely proper subjects of taxation.

The Economist notes in 1764, a fiscal crisis driven by wars in North America led Britain’s parliament began enforcing tariffs on sugar and molasses imported from outside the empire. In the U.S., from 1868 until 1913, 90 percent of all federal revenue came from taxes on liquor, beer…

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Zimbabwe, 2018

The reported turnout went down between an earlier announcement and the final one.

Fruits and Votes

The Zimbabwe election results were finally announced. Presumably to the surprise of few, the incumbent President Mnangagwa of ZANU-PF has “won” and the party will have a two-thirds majority of the assembly (elected by FPTP and with high malapportionment).

Amazingly, Mnangagwa won just enough to not require a runoff! Yes, I am being cynical.

The official results apparently show ZANU-PF getting more votes for assembly than for presidency. That would be unusual for a major party in a presidential system, but here’s assuming that the gap was even greater than officially reported. Either that, or the assembly election was even more rigged than the presidential.

Also unusual–and for me a strong indicator that things were being cooked–is that the assembly result was released days before the presidential. I do not have actual records on these things, but I believe such a sequence is highly unusual. Usually they either come out…

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That Jones Isn’t Funny Anymore

The Gerasites

By David Paxton

To observe Owen Jones at work is to see somebody carefully negotiating difficult terrain. He has been the vanguard for this latest form of full-time campaigner-cum-party surrogate disguised as a commentator. People for whom purpose and credibility are at constant odds with each other.

Jones is both inside the tent and outside and does wondrous work trying to square the circle. “All commentators are biased it’s just that I’m honest about it” is the line and it’s a typically good one. But the tension many political commentators experience between having friends in the game, being a player yourself, and commentating on that game, has rarely been more obvious than it is with Jones. And so his output constantly resembles tactics far more than just a writer trying to make sense of the world from their particular vantage point. And it’s those contortions (see him on Brexit), the…

View original post 3,740 more words

Gallery

Woke White Bashing Is A Slippery Slope by @CathyYoung63

Intellectual Protectionism: Jamie Whyte at TEDxSOAS

Top 1% are lazy in most countries in terms of extracting more surplus

Image

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