• Fear Sells Better than Sex

    Taking a look some local and national events recently, I’ve come to the conclusion that fear is a much better way to sell something than sex. Yes, sex sells, but if you really want to control Americans, fear seems to be better.

    A nearby town is dealing with the idea of high voltage power lines. Central Texas one the highest growth rate areas in the entire US. Leander ISD, for example, has averaged construction of just under two new schools per year since 2000! More and more rural land is turning into suburban neighborhoods, strip malls, and parking lots.

    These residents and business need electricity and high voltage lines are what is needed to get power to the people. You’ve seen them, those monstrously ugly tower of steel with a dozen wires. You know… these things.


    Residents of the area are understandably upset. The regional authority wants to run them cheaply, right through a park and a neighborhood, and the residents tend to think that these things will cause cancer in their children.

    Wait… what?

    It’s trivial to show that isn’t true. There’s tons of research on the topic. The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences has an excellent article on why these are not going to give people cancer. The research seems to indicate that there is relationship between distance to these power lines and childhood leukemia. But if you read these studies, you’ll see that they are talking about a less than 4% of the entire planet’s population and, of those, there be a maximum increase of a mere 2400 case per year (out of the 50,000 or so that are reported). That’s under maximum conditions.

    And, all of these studies state two things. First. the numbers that they are talking about are within the statistical error. Second, there still isn’t any mechanism for a magnetic field to cause cancer.

    I found one thing that’s actually very amusing. In the research for this article, I found that the therapeutic magnets sold by woo websites (also using fear to sell products) are supposed to be 700 Gauss (a measure of the strength of the magnetic field).

    A New Zealand organization suggests that standing under a high voltage power line can result in 0.05 Gauss. The PDF is here. Forty meters from a high voltage line results in a field strength between 0.01 Gauss and 0.001 Gauss. So, standing under a high voltage power line results in 1/10,000th the strength of a magnet that many people wear on their wrists.

    But the residents keep referring to this website by a company called Safespace. And it’s a pretty scary article.

    Strong, artificial EMFs that radiate from power lines can scramble and interfere with your body’s natural EMF, affecting everything from your sleep cycles and stress levels to your immune response and DNA!

    According to them, at two kilometers away, children living 2 kilometers away from these lines can have stunted growth.

    But what isn’t in that article is any kind of reference to any research. But they will sell you a $45 pendant that has a circuit in it that will create a zone of protection 7-feet away from you.

    For a mere $300, you can buy a plug in night light… I mean an “EMF Adapter” that will protect your whole house from electromagnetic fields.

    First, if they can actually do this, then they need to be selling to the military. But if this device somehow stops electromagnetic fields and Wi-Fi

    It even clears wireless devices (Wi-Fi) simply because the wireless router is plugged into the main circuit.

    The implications of that are pretty staggering. Somehow, this plug in night light… excuse me “EMF Adapter” stops wi-fi signals, so forget about wireless internet and cell phone reception. And you can forget about radio and non-cable TV. It should even stop cordless phones and baby monitors. It also stops the magnetic fields generated by all the motors in your house (clothes washer, fridge, car alternator?), and hard disk drives in computers. Because all of those thing generate a field that this thing stops. In other words, it destroys modern technology just by plugging it in.

    There was a TV show like this. Revolution. Stupid show.

    But, no, what really happens is that this device glows when you plug it in and you just bought a $300 night light.

    I love the “independent research lab that did the tests.

    “The SafeSpace technology more than completely reversed the damaging effects of EMF radiation. on the DNA…the conductivity values were enhanced above normal…” Glen Rein, Ph.D., Director of Quantum Biology Research Labs

    Here’s Dr. Glen Rein’s website. What we have here is a whole lot of quantum woo, with a little homeopathy, and a scare tactic for selling useless products. Just look at the title of a “paper” of his “STORAGE OF NON-HERTZIAN FREQUENCY INFORMATION IN WATER”. That makes no sense at all to anyone with a hint of science education. CSI mentioned him in 1998.

    So what we have is someone who is promoting fear and using that to sell products. It seems to have taken hold in what is otherwise a bastion of critical thinking in Texas.

    I ended up writing a lot more about that than I had planned, because I wanted to also talk about how someone who is either insane or just a really huge asshole has managed to get the GOP political nomination. By promoting fear. That’s how you really sell things.

    Trump is taking advantage of the rise in authoritarians. Authoritarians are people who

    when they feel threatened, look for strong leaders who promise to take whatever action necessary to protect them from outsiders and prevent the changes they fear.

    But the leaders know this. And they use that fear to generate support. Anyone with a lick of sense knows that a giant wall between the US and Mexico will not be built. And Mexico sure isn’t going to pay for it.

    But Trump supporters seem to like this idea. Because (paradoxically) immigrants are both taking all of our jobs and are lazy and getting all our government benefits.

    Critical thinking skills are not the primary goal of authoritarians, or their leaders. Fear is. Selling that fear and making a profit from it.

    They have sold that fear so well over the past few decades that people actively work against their own best interest. Elderly people routinely vote for politicians who try to reduce social security and social services that they depend on, for example.

    Just tell someone that some agent is going to take away their right to believe as they want or take away their guns or let boys into the girls room. And people will support that person. Even though they don’t offer solutions. Even though they don’t care about that issue. It results in a vote and they’ll take it… all the way to the bank.

    Fear sells and fear sells well.

    Category: CulturefeaturedGovernmentLifeResearchSkepticismSociety


    Article by: Smilodon's Retreat

    • Otto T. Goat

      “The average immigrant household consumes 33 percent more cash welfare, 57 percent more food assistance, and 44 percent more Medicaid dollars than the average native household.”


      • SmilodonsRetreat

        So, I assume you agree with the conclusion of this article and the best solution is to raise the minimum wage to around $15 per hour and make college free for all? After all the article says…

        “Put more simply, welfare and low-wage work go together. Just as natives with low levels of education and large numbers of children are apt to consume welfare, immigrants with those same characteristics are also likely to be on welfare.”

        So to fix the problem, raise minimum wage and increase education. Right?

        • Otto T. Goat

          Raising the minimum wage hurts low skill workers. Making college free does not help people who aren’t suited to go to college.

        • hyperzombie

          and make college free for all?

          Well that is a nice thought, but I think you mean “Free” college for those that attend, by no means will it be free for the taxpayers.

          • SmilodonsRetreat

            What’s funny is that it USED to be free, especially for low income families. I got my entire bachelor’s degree without a single loan thanks to the Pell Grant and some small scholarships.

            So, now I make a really nice salary, pay taxes, and buy goods that improve the economy. Instead of paying off a student loan.

            Everyone benefits. And that’s how it was, until the late 90s, early 2000s. Most people don’t seem to remember that. It worked and it worked for a long time.

            • hyperzombie

              I dont have a problem providing grants and scholarships for low income people, I have a problem providing Free college for everyone. Not everyone wants or needs to go to College, and most families can afford to pay for their own children to go to college, if they want to.

              Why should a tradesman be forced to pay for a Bankers kid to go to college. Now that you make a good living, why should others that make less money help to pay for your kids to go to college?

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              Most families cannot afford for their children to go to college.

              Now, that being said, I totally agree with you. I don’t think that everyone can or should go to college. The only problem is that the tech and vocational programs that were highly prevalent in high schools when I was a student basically don’t exist anymore. About 1/3 of my graduating class (high school) had completed vocational certifications in a dozen fields by the time they graduated high school. We have everything from cosmetology to vet tech.

              Now, all those programs exist almost exclusively at the junior college level. Now, you not only can’t get auto tech training in high school, but the special certifications for something like auto tech require a lot more education. The college I used to work at had a 2-year auto tech degree. It was 8 hours a day fall through spring for two years. Upon completion, the graduates were certified for general mechanics and one specialization (transmissions, for example, or Honda electronics). Thus their mobility is reduced because of the specialization needed.

              Now, I admit that this isn’t the case in every school district. But if you look at the school districts that can afford some programs and those that can’t, you’ll find that the ones that can afford it are not the ones where it would be the most beneficial.

              To summarize, I wish they would bring back vo-tech in high schools. But high schools have less money than ever before and colleges charge tuition now.

            • hyperzombie

              In the US median family income is 52,000 per year. They can save for college if they wanted to. They would only have to save about 2% of their income per year to pay for their child. Not much of a hardship.

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              Nope, not any more.

              Two percent for 18 years is $18,720. That’s enough for 2 years of college.

              “According to the College Board, the average cost of tuition and fees for the 2015–2016 school year was $32,405 at private colleges, $9,410 for state residents at public colleges, and $23,893 for out-of-state residents attending public universities.”

              Even at instate tuition. It’s not enough. But you are right, at lot of people can save for their child’s education. But, the same people we’re talking about in the minimum wage discussion cannot.

              Median, of course, means that 50% of the people make more than that. And 50% make less. Some make WAAAY the hell more than that and some WAAAY the hell less than that.

              In the minimum wage discussion, we’re talking about people who have to decide whether to pay a bill for the month or buy food. I’ve taught kids who, if it wasn’t for free lunch at school, wouldn’t have a meal every day. Yes, it’s an emotional argument. But it’s something that we can fix. But we’re not. I don’t know why.

            • hyperzombie

              Two percent for 18 years is $18,720. That’s enough for 2 years of college.”

              You forgot interest. If you invested 100 dollars per month for 20 years you would have about 50,000 at 6%.

              Median, of course, means that 50% of the people make more than that. “

              But you still want to provide their children with free college?

              I’ve taught kids who, if it wasn’t for free lunch at school, wouldn’t have a meal every day. “

              Min wage increases may make this problem worse.

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              Fair enough. Interest.

              I want everyone to have an education that is up to their personal limit. We provide free education (of variable quality) for 13 years. Other countries are doing fine with free education through college, even some US colleges are trying it.

              I think that education is the single most important thing for a person and the country.

              Maybe we don’t have to make it free for everyone. Maybe do what Stanford is doing. If you can get in and your income is less than $100k (IIRC), then it’s free. I can live with that.

              Min wage increases may make it better.

    • Otto T. Goat

      Many liberals do want to ban all guns.

    • Otto T. Goat

      I find it funny how liberals equate Trump with Hitler while accusing Trump supporters of fear mongering, and how liberals who seek to expand the scope of government accuse others of authoritarianism.

      • SmilodonsRetreat

        It’s funny how you conflate all kinds of different things in one sentence, in order to promote the ideas I’m talking about.

        You live in a world of government regulations. What, you want pure anarchy? Or you want states to control all of their own functions? Meaning that by just crossing a state line, I could be committing a major cirme.

        Go away Otto.

        • Otto T. Goat

          I thought I was an authoritarian, now you’re accusing me of wanting pure anarchy.

          • SmilodonsRetreat

            I’m using authoritarian in a very specific sense. Did you bother to read what I wrote this time?

    • Derek Carr

      Liberalism is all about using fear to advance its failed ideology and mythical utopia. If only we cede more money, power and control to the Federal bureaucracy then we can rest easy and not worry about the difficulties of life as our “nanny” government will supposedly take care of us.

      The left’s answer to our fears and problems is always an increase in the size and scope of government and imposing “solutions” using coercion and force resulting in predictably poor outcomes.

      The incoherent policy of raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour is a perfect example of our nanny government using fear to attempt to pass a government mandate and collect votes and, yet, ignore basic economic laws in the process.

      Playing on the fears of low skilled workers (and the leftist do-gooders who are always in favor of new laws and regulations to increase the power of government) liberals pander to those fears by arbitrarily raising the minimum wage. It makes liberals feel good and they can then brag about how much they care even though their policies actually damage those they are presumably trying to help.

      A higher minimum wage doesn’t help workers when the market decides they can’t afford $15 an hour for low skilled employees. No magic tinkering and fear-mongering by liberal elites can change the economic laws they are trying to defy.

      • SmilodonsRetreat

        Once again, more myths about minimum wage. When you decide to read what is actually happening in places with an increase in minimum wage, then let me know.

        I would appeal to your humanity that people who work full time should, at least, be able to afford a place to live and bills and insurance. But I find that, in general, people who are against a minimum wage increase do not actually have to live on minimum wage. They have there’s and fuck everyone else.

        • Derek Carr

          Humanity has nothing to do with the government arbitrarily mandating a minimum wage which does more harm to those it’s supposed to help. There are other free market solutions to the problem of stagnant wages.

          Your simplistic argument of “they have theirs and fuck everyone else” is so typical of the emotionally based mentality liberals are so fond of.

          You have ignored Otto’s link to a study on minimum wages as I imagine you’ll try to ignore my links below. Take notice of the CBO’s modest projection that 500,000 workers would lose their jobs due to an increase of minimum wage to only $10 per hour.



          • SmilodonsRetreat

            And you ignored my link that shows, despite projections, NO jobs have been lost due to minimum wage increases.

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              Do Minimum Wages Really Reduce Teen Employment? Accounting for Heterogeneity and Selectivity in State Panel Data

              “. Put simply, our findings indicate that minimum wage increases—in the range that have been implemented in the United States—do not reduce employment among teens”


              Why Does the Minimum Wage Have No Discernible Effect on Employment?

              “Economists have conducted hundreds of studies of the employment impact of the minimum wage. Summarizing those studies is a daunting task, but two recent meta-studies analyzing the research conducted since the early 1990s concludes that the minimum wage has little or no discernible effect on the employment prospects of low-wage workers.”


              “Of the 13 states that increased their minimum wage in early 2014, all but 2 have seen a gain in employment since, and half of the 10 fastest-growing states by employment were among this group of minimum wage raisers. Interestingly, 10 of these 13 states were above the median level of employment change over this period. The average change in employment for the 13 states that increased their minimum wage was +0.61%, while for the remaining states (all of which did not change their minimum wage) the average employment change was +0.27%.

              Again, it is worth noting that these findings are not dispositive, given the nature of the data and the simplicity of the analysis. Still, these findings complicate one of the major arguments used against raising the minimum wage. Even among the states, which face a greater risk of ‘race-to-the-bottom’ dynamics, we do not see evidence for the purported reduction/stagnation in employment growth. ”



              The New Minimum Wage Research

              “The United States, however, faces a far more favorable situation. Considering the 16 means of meta-estimates (across the fixed effect, random effect, and random coefficient models) that include a
              control for whether the estimate is based on U.S. data, the implied employment declines following a 10 percent increase in the minimum wage are very small — between −0.03 and −0.6 percent—and statistically insignificant. Bearing in mind that the estimates for the United States reflect a historic experience of moderate increases in the minimum wage, it appears that if negative effects on employment are present, they are too small to be statistically detectable. Such effects would be too modest to have meaningful consequences in the dynamically changing labor markets of
              the United States.


              There, current studies show that few, if any, jobs were actually lost and that all projections show that IF jobs are lost, it is so few as to be statistically insignificant.

              Keeping in mind that we’re talking about low age, generally unskilled labor that can be easily transferred to another position.

              I can provide another few dozen of these if you like…

            • hyperzombie


              —in the range that have been implemented in the United States—do not reduce employment among teens”

              concludes that the minimum wage has little or no discernible effect on the employment prospects of low-wage workers.

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              Little.. It certainly doesn’t have the dire consequences that I’ve heard on this very thread.

            • hyperzombie

              Well the little effect may seem meaningless to you, but to the unemployed low income person or teenager, it is a big deal.

              Just saying…

              I know if I was unemployed and Gov regulations made it slightly harder for me to gain employment, I would be a bit miffed.

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              Hold on. What, EXACTLY, government regulations MAKE IT HARDER for you to get a job if you are unemployed?

              Higher minimum wage. Really? We’re talking about, in general, teenagers, and unskilled labor here. Fast food places, checking and bagging at grocery stores, stuff like that. If you don’t have a job, go apply at one of them. I can drive down any business street in my town and almost every business has “help wanted”.

              However, what this does mean is that, as a low-paid worker, you MIGHT just be able to live without government assistance. You might be able to afford a place to live without depending on assisted housing. You might be able to buy food without food-stamps.

              Which would you rather have, one person looking for a job (who can probably find one fairly easily) or 15 people who need food stamps and assisted housing. One person on welfare or 15?

              You may be pissed. And I don’t blame you. But, as we have seen, Paying people to work INCREASES the economy of the area, not depresses it. How many states with increased minimum wage saw job growth?

              No, we’re not going to put every single person on the planet to work, at a job they like, making enough to buy a Jaguar and a house in the ‘burbs. But we can do it without giving 23% of the US working population government assistance. (http://www.census.gov/newsroom/press-releases/2015/cb15-97.html)

            • hyperzombie

              Hold on. What, EXACTLY, government regulations MAKE IT HARDER for you to get a job if you are unemployed?”

              Well, do you no know how businesses work? If a worker does not provide you more value than what it costs to pay them, they do not get a job. That is why raising the Min wage harms low skilled workers the most, it makes it far more expensive for employers to take a chance on a worker with no or little skill in the workforce.

              I would rather have no one looking for a job, and no one on Gov assistance, but that is fantasy land thinking. I am just suggesting that raising the Min wage will make it harder for people to find work and it will do little to lower the amount of people on assistance.

              You may be pissed.”

              I am not pissed, I have plenty of money for my needs and own my business. I just feel bad for the young people that will find it far harder to find summer work and part time work.

              But, as we have seen, Paying people to work INCREASES the economy of the area, not depresses it.”

              Yes, but as your links show. There may be less people being paid to work, and that is why I have a problem with it.

              How many states with increased minimum wage saw job growth?”

              Well, what would the job growth been if the wage was not increased? More, less… The same? Was the job growth among the poor or wealthy?

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              “I am just suggesting that raising the Min wage will make it harder for people to find work and it will do little to lower the amount of people on assistance.”

              And the evidence so far is that this isn’t the case.

              “I am not pissed” I meant, if you were out of the job.

              “There may be less people being paid to work, and that is why I have a problem with it.”

              That’s not entirely what the links show. You quoted one of them yourself. “Little to no”.

              “Well, what would the job growth been if the wage was not increased? More, less… The same? Was the job growth among the poor or wealthy?”

              I don’t know. Looking at state data is tricky. But an improving economy is better than a crashing economy. Compare Minnesota to Kansas. An increasing economy means more money flowing, more money for taxes, and the purchase of goods and services, meaning more jobs and more benefits (like school and free lunch programs and the like). That’s always better.

              We both said the same thing. There is nothing that is going to get 100% of working aged people employed. But reducing government welfare and improving the economy, we can all agree, is a good thing. Much better than increased government welfare and a crashing economy.

              So far, the results of minimum wage increases seem to be good.

              Again, I would rather that people who work 40 a full time job be paid enough to live without government assistance. But I think humans are important.

            • hyperzombie

              Well I am glad that we agree that we both want less poverty, more jobs, less expensive higher education, and more freedom (just a guess).

              Thanks for the chat, I normally only comment on farming issues so this was a fun and thought provoking discussion. Thanks.

              I have cattle to feed and a truck to fix so thanks agains and see ya later.

            • Otto T. Goat

              Government regulations raise labor costs and discourage investment.

            • Derek Carr

              Two of your links were from CEPR.

              From Wikipedia on CEPR:

              “The Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) is an economic policy think-tank that was founded in 1999 by economists Dean Baker and Mark Weisbrot.[2] It has been described as both progressive[3] and left-leaning.[4][5][6] CEPR is based in Washington, DC.”

              So, a left-leaning think tank favors higher minimum wages. What a surprise.

              The other study you mentioned used questionable methodology as described in my UCI link. Did you read it?

              We can argue all day long with competing studies. However, if one looks at who is sponsoring the study, the methodology used, and the preponderance of the studies which point to job losses from higher minimum wages then a clearer picture emerges – one which doesn’t support your argument.

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              You didn’t actually talk about the data from CEPR… it should be easily verifiable if you disagree. Maybe do some checking and publish instead of arguing with me on the internet.

              It’s DATA. It doesn’t matter who is publishing it. Or do you just assume that a “left-leaning” organization is wrong. If so, you might as well leave now.

              Here are some more studies.

              ” Although these statistical results focus on states in just one U.S. region over a fairly narrow time period, they strongly suggest that we cannot assume that minimum wage increases will have a negative impact on employment change.”

              “A growing body of both empirical and theoretical work has called into question the long-held prediction that a higher minimum wage will reduce the number of jobs. A more nuanced model of how the economy operates has superceded the simplistic supply and demand theoretical model that is the basis for this prediction. This more sophisticated labor market model suggests that employers are likely to respond to a wage increase by improving the skills of their workers and becoming more efficient, and that slightly higher wages would be offset by savings from reduced turnover and higher productivity. Recent empirical evidence supports this new theoretical understanding. As the 1999 Economic Report of the President indicated, studies of the 1996 and 1997 federal minimum wage increases found that there were no adverse employment effects.”

              Or maybe, we try it and see what happens. It’s not like predictions have ever been wrong before.

            • Derek Carr

              More of the same, Smilodon. Firstly, if you’re going to comment and provide your opinion about a controversial subject on the public internet then don’t be surprised if you’re challenged.

              Secondly, I would be very surprised if you don’t actually believe data and study methodology can be manipulated. So, to basically state data is data is either disingenuous or naive.

              How about we use reason, logic, and history to not make stupid mistakes that will affect hundreds of thousands of low wage workers before we “try it and see what happens”?

              Btw, your fiscal policy.org link reads like an advocacy group – Hardly nonpartisan research. Your links have referred to mostly progressive organizations and you have not shown the preponderance of studies that demonstrate higher minimum wages are job killers to be in error.

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              So, you don’t bother to look at the data or the hundreds of papers that support them. You just see “leftist” and assume it’s wrong.

              It’s OK, for you do to that. Just admit it and we’ll be done.

              I also note that you continue to ignore those studies that you can’t dismiss with a blithe comment about the organization. I think that shows more then you think.

            • Derek Carr

              Your liberal arrogance is rearing its ugly head again. What you accuse me of is exactly what you’re doing. Except you have totally ignored my evidence and links and haven’t even felt the need to comment on them (like the non-partisan CBO report).

              I’ve already shown that economists like David Neumark have demonstrated the poor methodology used in many of your studies. I haven’t ignored anything as you have. Also, the preponderance of studies support my views on the minimum wage as well as reason and logic.

              Again, we can fight about studies all day long but your continued distortions about our debate only reveals the shallowness of your arguments.

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              From the CBO report…

              Once fully implemented in the second half of 2016, the $10.10 option would reduce total employment by about 500,000 workers, or 0.3 percent, CBO projects (see the table below)

              That’s the decrease you’re arguing about? Really? That’s the same as the error rate for jobs numbers.

              “Once the increases and decreases in income for all workers are taken into account, overall real income would rise by $2 billion.”

              “Families whose income would have been between one and three times the poverty threshold would receive, on net, $12 billion in additional real income. About $2 billion, on net, would go to families whose income would have been between three and six times the poverty threshold.”

              Talk about cherry picking one statement out the entire report.

              On the balance, I think that the results more than make up for the down side. More money actually in the economy, instead of in welfare.

              So, you’re main evidence actually supports pretty much the same conclusions as all of mine. And the downside is minimal. Yes, it’s not minimal to those people, but I wouldn’t want you to use an emotional argument now.

            • Derek Carr

              The downside is minimal?

              Using the same middle aground methodology as the CBO report, Forbes points out the absurdity and consequences of a $15 per hour minimum wage. It isn’t just 500,000 jobs but 6,600,000 jobs if you enanct a $15 per hour minimum wage unstead of the $10 per hour minimum the CBO report referred to.

              So, since you seem to agree with the methodology and results used in the CBO report then you would also have to accept the same methodology used for your proposed $15 hour.

              Does over 6,000,000 jobs lost get your attention, Smilodon? Or does over 6,000,000 low wage workers who would lose their jobs “on balance” seem worth it to you to advance your government imposed “solutions”?

              From Forbes:

              ”Sadly, as with all such delusions, reality has a way of breaking in and so it is with this idea of a $15 national minimum wage. And here is a bit of that reality: an analysis of what will actually happen if anyone is deluded enough to try to make $15 an hour the national minimum wage for the US. 6.6 million, yes, that’s 6,600,000 jobs will be lost. That’s actually more people than earn at or under the current minimum wage.”


            • Otto T. Goat

              It should be obvious that the overall employment rate does not tell you if raising the minimum wage had negative employment effects.

        • hyperzombie

          Well with all due respect, I believe that the Min wage is far too high, and I do care about the poor. Raising the Min wage harms the poor far more than lowering it. with no job at all they can’t afford anything.

          • Derek Carr

            The problem is, hyperzombie, it doesn’t make you “feel” as good when you state the truth.

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              The problem is that one side is presenting evidence and the other side is crying about “left-leaning” data.

              You know, looking back on the last 8 years, I can’t think of a single conservative prediction about the economy, Obamacare, or civil rights that has come true. No one has taken away their guns. The ACA, while slightly more expensive than planned is working and shows no signs of collapsing. The economy has increased dramatically during the Obama Administration.

              So, it appears that the US reality actually is left-leaning.

            • hyperzombie

              I can’t think of a single conservative prediction about the economy, Obamacare, or civil rights that has come true.”

              And the left side is somehow better at predicting the future? And I am not left or right, I believe both sides are equally divisive and moronic.

              The economy has increased dramatically during the Obama Administration.”

              Well it couldn’t have gotten much worse could it? And with all politics, you should really ask this question…”Did the Economy improve because of the government or in spite of it? “

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              I didn’t say that. Many of the posts here are about predictions made by someone who rejects data because it’s from a “left-leaning” organization. If you are correct that the other side’s predictions also fail to come true, then it stands to reason that all predictions fail to come true (or at least, the vast majority). In which case, we should do things like guaranteed basic income and legalizing some drugs and allowing people to choose their own restroom. Good thought that.

              As far the economy, I totally agree with you. The amount of influence that any president has on 99% of the economic system is exactly jack. But that doesn’t stop anyone from taking credit or placing blame does it.

              Indeed, listening to the candidates of a particular party, it seems like none of them have a clue what powers the president actually has.

              I just think that if one lays blame for something, then one should also award credit for that thing. Whether or not the person getting the blame or credit had anything to do with it. It would be better not to blame someone for something they have no control over (like people thinking that Obama botched the Fed response to Katrina). But that’s not politics, that’s intelligent people thinking about things.

            • hyperzombie

              For me it is not only about the data, it is all about real world impartial evidence.

              If you are correct that the other side’s predictions also fail to come true, then it stands to reason that all predictions fail to come true (or at least, the vast majority).”

              Well in all fairness “It’s Difficult to Make Predictions, Especially About the Future”.

              I would not have a problem with a guaranteed income if they had to work for it, and it only covered the basics.

              I think all drugs should be legalised and regulated.

              Choose your own restroom? Hey I am all for choice and if it is YOUR restroom do as you please. But for public restrooms, free choice is most likely a very bad idea. I am a 6’4 man and I may want to use a Women’s bathroom because it is normally cleaner and doesn’t smell like piss. But I would never do that because it would be very intimidating to some women and girls that are seeking privacy.

              I would agree to let people that look like women and people that look like men to use the restroom that corresponds with the sex that outward appearance suggests that they are, regardless of what it says on their birth certificate.

              I believe that women should have the right to go to the washroom without feeling intimidated or uncomfortable. So if you are a passable transgender, there will be no issues, and no laws need to be written. I am fairly sure that 99.9% of folks would be OK with that.

              So true,,, if the government could improve the economy, we would all have free ponies by now.

            • Derek Carr

              How disingenuous you can be, Smilodon.

              “One side is presenting evidence and the other side is crying about “left-leaning” data.”

              You’ve simply ignored the data I’ve presented (like the non-partisan CBO report) or regarding the poor methodology used in some of the studies you linked to. You pretend I haven’t presented evidence in your zeal to try to marginalize my point of view

              I’m not even going to waste my time to try debate you on the failures and lies of Obamacare. Suffice it to say you are living in a parallel universe that you keep perpetuating by immersing yourself solely in leftist propaganda.

            • Otto T. Goat

              Economic growth has been anemic.

            • SmilodonsRetreat

              Economic growth has been positive and greater than it was under GOP presidents.

            • hyperzombie

              Well to be fair you are comparing politician to politician. For a fair comparison you need to know what would have happened if the government did not change a thing?

            • Otto T. Goat

              Growth has been positively anemic.

        • Otto T. Goat

          I find that people who are for minimum wage increases don’t understand economics.

      • Otto T. Goat

        Another motive is that many union wages are set on a mulitplier of the minimum wage.

        • Derek Carr

          You’re exactly right, Otto. Also, when minimum wages for non-union employees are raised it helps union employees get and retain more jobs. Higher minimum wages price out low skilled workers that compete with higher wage union workers for jobs.