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Thread: Inauguration Day, Inauguration Hooooooraaay!

  1. #12961
    Or maybe it's not a black hole, but a green dwarf.

  2. #12962
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    This has nothing to do with anything discussed on the previous page*, but I find the interplay between socialists, conservatives, and liberals absolutely ****ing hilarious. I mean, there's anti-conservative backbiting everywhere, right alongside the anti-socialist slander. But liberals are traitorous to both of us; they condemn the right while simultaneously governing from it. It seems quite natural that contemporary socialists and conservatives would consider the liberals far worse than the other, but somehow fancying themselves as moderates, rather than as a different form of extremists, they always seem especially offended when criticized by either of them.

    "How dare you criticize me, socialist? I'm on your side! Don't you see how many people I've lifted out of poverty?"

    "Et tu, conservative? After everything we do to support the oligarchs you enjoy? When we've continued your wars while you were voted out?"

    And then they have the gall to ask to be treated kindly, to be granted safe spaces and to be shielded from criticism? Do you want to know where liberalism's safe space is? It's called the commercial media. Ask about white history month, next.

    (* it does)

  3. #12963
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    I don't know how the capital markets fundamentalists managed to convince everyone they're the midpoint between the royalists and literally everybody else, but it makes for some pretty good marketing, doesn't it?

  4. #12964
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    marketing is all they're good at, anyhow.

  5. #12965
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    According to Krugman, the stock downturn really is caused by Trump being a colossal moron*.

    *Does anyone still argue him defeating Hillary Clinton's campaign was an act of genius? Because lol to that.

  6. #12966
    I was staying away from this thread because I had left some bits unanswered and then I saw the thread might be withering on the vine so I wasn't going to be the one to revive it. I see somebody did which isn't surprising. There seems to be plenty of Trump stuff going on in the news, not that there isn't always. Not that I'm following any of it, just somewhat aware of it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    I find the interplay between socialists, conservatives, and liberals absolutely ****ing hilarious.
    A few days ago a Prager University video popped up for me as a YouTube ad and your post above reminded me of it.

    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  7. #12967
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wookie06 View Post
    I was staying away from this thread because I had left some bits unanswered and then I saw the thread might be withering on the vine so I wasn't going to be the one to revive it. I see somebody did which isn't surprising. There seems to be plenty of Trump stuff going on in the news, not that there isn't always. Not that I'm following any of it, just somewhat aware of it.



    A few days ago a Prager University video popped up for me as a YouTube ad and your post above reminded me of it.

    I’m glad my post reminded you about an ad the conservative Wilkes brothers paid liberal Google to show you

  8. #12968
    I know, right? I thought that was funny too.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  9. #12969
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    I feel like there’s an historical term for what it is when the businessmen and the racists unite under the banner of nationalism but I can’t quite put my finger on it.

    I’m sure prageru has a video.

  10. #12970
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    Do you ever wonder if Google/PragerU are like, “according to our pervasive surveillance, this Wookie06 person visits a forum where socialists post. Better recharge him on fascist propaganda”

  11. #12971
    They do have a video titled something like "Why you should be a nationalist". Haven't watched it. Some YouTube, and online advertising in general, does a pretty good job sometimes but other times it's a huge fail. I keep getting ads for the video editing software Brian was asking about since I had never heard of it and searched for it and NYT seems to be blanketing YT now as well.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  12. #12972
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wookie06 View Post
    They do have a video titled something like "Why you should be a nationalist". Haven't watched it. Some YouTube, and online advertising in general, does a pretty good job sometimes but other times it's a huge fail. I keep getting ads for the video editing software Brian was asking about since I had never heard of it and searched for it and NYT seems to be blanketing YT now as well.
    Basically. I view a lot of economics YT and even PragerU stuff, but I think I’ve seen a PragerU ad like three times. Either their algorithm is a lot worse or it’s way better than I thought.

  13. #12973
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    The thing about PragerU is, it's wrong, but it's wrong in a pernicious way. It's lies wrapped in truth. I'm not exaggerating when I call it propaganda; conservative propaganda is the stated purpose of the organization.

    Like that video. They're correct that there are leftists and liberals, and the two aren't the same thing. But they also misrepresent who leftists are and what they believe. A bunch of the things they propose as leftist ideas are actually liberal ideas, and vice-versa.

    One point in particular is the comment about how liberals think race is irrelevant, and leftists think that belief is racist. That's mostly backwards. A growing subset of liberals (social democrats) believe in active intervention within the framework of capitalism in order to alleviate racial and other inequities; ideally these would be legal remedies, but economic remedies should be applied if necessary. Socialists and communists, on the other hand, believe these inequities are a product of our economic system, and therefore aren't worth thinking about at all (once the economic system has been re-engineered, these problems will eventually disappear). This was the position taken by self-titled socialist Bernie Sanders during the last Democratic Primary. He was viciously attacked for adopting this "racist" position by BLM and others.

    Another point is the open borders stuff. There are people on the left who believe in open borders and the abolishment of the state, but there's a lot to unpack there. Communists believe in the abolishment of the state, but that's because communism makes the state purposeless, not necessarily because they immediately want it. The people who are most interested in relaxing national borders are liberals, who for ideological reasons want to eliminate the inefficiencies and arbitrage opportunities created by national borders. Given the number of very public conservatives who hire illegal immigrants in the United States, the President included, the liberals don't seem to be alone in this desire.

    Another broad point is that the left has co-opted liberalism. It's actually the other way around. On the left we have a saying, "liberals speak to the left but govern from the right". Basically, liberals have adopted the rhetoric of leftism in order to bring out the leftist votes, similar to how conservatives have adopted Christian rhetoric. Neither liberals nor conservatives actually mean it. Believe me, if liberals (Democrats) were actually leftists, you'd know about it - because Obama would have sent tanks to seize the factories.

  14. #12974
    I was going to post something that I thought made sense about American usage of the term "liberalism", but instead I am just going to say that our usage of the term doesn't make sense at all. If anything, it looks like conservatives and lefties aren't even using the term in the same way: conservatives bemoan "liberals" for dislodging traditional society, whereas leftists wouldn't want to be confused with those endorsing a "liberal" economic policy, which is in fact consistent with the platform of the DNC, but in all the ways that Republicans are also in favor of in a much more extreme and ridiculous way (hence the idea that smart billionaires should probably vote Democrat if they want to preserve themselves).
    Last edited by Reverend Jones; 12-27-2018 at 02:03 AM.

  15. #12975
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    Ronald Reagan was a liberal.

  16. #12976
    Oh, but as libertarians will be sure to tell you, a "classical" liberal. (Whatever.)

  17. #12977
    Although his policies probably could be confused with those of HRC, had she been elected, so maybe just a plain old liberal. Of course I'm sure wookie will love that comparison.

  18. #12978
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reverend Jones View Post
    Oh, but as libertarians will be sure to tell you, a "classical" liberal. (Whatever.)

    Which is radically different from social liberalism, because social liberalism has legal abortion.

  19. #12979
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    hey remember that time Ronald Reagan colluded with Iran to beat Jimmy Carter?

  20. #12980
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    According to Krugman, the stock downturn really is caused by Trump being a colossal moron*.

    *Does anyone still argue him defeating Hillary Clinton's campaign was an act of genius? Because lol to that.
    With respect to Krugman, I don't see how you can blame Trump for what's basically just a continuum of increasingly terrible decisions made by the monetarist-dominated neoliberal reset era. Donald Trump made it worse by trying to goose his poll numbers but he hasn't really done anything that past administrations haven't done (economically speaking).

    The stock market crashed 4 years ago. Corporations have been loading up on debt for leveraged share repurchase programs, trying to keep their share prices high despite flagging [real] profitability. Although it's gotten much worse since 2014 (and much much worse since 2009) it's been happening for more than 20 years. It's basically a debt-equity swap between corporations and mutual funds/foreign investors. Finance and economics people have been quietly expressing alarm about this since 2016, at least, since some of these companies - big companies - have so much debt maturing in the next few years that they won't be able to refinance if interest rates go up.

    If any of this language reminds you of 2008,

  21. #12981
    Thought he was onto something.
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    uhu then what
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    enshu

  22. #12982
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tenshu View Post
    uhu then what
    Corporations that don’t have the cash flow to issue new bonds at higher rates to cover maturing ones will either default, liquidate assets to cover the difference, lay off workers to reduce non-debt service expenses, or declare bankruptcy, which will result in all three of those things. Because this risk is systemic (i.e. everybody is doing leveraged share repurchase) this means a lot of assets liquidated at the same time and a lot of people laid off at the same time.

    Edit to continue post on a different device:

    When everybody is forced to dump assets at the same time, those asset prices drop. For most big companies, their “liquid” assets/savings are all in securities, mostly their own stock. That means the stock market crash will get even worse as companies try to pay down their debt by liquidating their assets. Companies that try to boost revenue by laying off workers will discover a concomitant revenue cut, because everybody is laying off workers, and nobody can afford their products anymore. And then, for the companies that actually go bankrupt or go out of business because of this, all of those mutual funds that have been buying up corporate bonds are going to go bust which will wipe out millions of peoples’ retirement savings - again.

    This is a debt bubble turning into systemic risk that is threatening a global financial crisis. Again. And companies are already being forced to tear down their ASR programs, the stock market is “crashing” as institutional investors rapidly price in that default risk, and nobody is paying attention because Bad Orange President is scaring markets because China.
    Last edited by Jon`C; 12-27-2018 at 01:27 PM.

  23. #12983
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    Do you ever wonder if Google/PragerU are like, “according to our pervasive surveillance, this Wookie06 person visits a forum where socialists post. Better recharge him on fascist propaganda”
    Nope, I wonder if they're like "Oh **** this ***** is way too LGBTQ oriented, better toss 'em some anti-LGBTQ content... you know what, add a little bit of fascist propaganda too, you know, for good measure.".

    Seriously YouTube just sees a few buzzwords and tosses me the worst **** in response.

  24. #12984
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    Oh god you aren’t kidding. Apparently because I’m interested in Star Wars and the movie industry, YouTube thinks I’m interested in hearing every angry white guy opinion on the internet about how Kathleen Kennedy’s genitals make her too SJW to run a company.


    Edit: If the YouTube thumbnail has a cartoon drawing of a scornful white guy you don’t even need to watch it. You know exactly what he’s gonna say.
    Last edited by Jon`C; 12-27-2018 at 02:36 PM.

  25. #12985
    Did anyone else get the ad during the election with some whiny kid complaining about politicians being entitled to your vote but vote democrat anyway? I watched the whole thing once just because but skipped it every other chance I got. There couldn't possibly be much honest data about me to suggest that could have been an effective ad for me so I imagine there is a magic dollar amount you can pay google to force content on everyone. I would link the video but I don't know enough identifiable information about it to effectively search for it.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  26. #12986
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    Dodging alt-right videos on youtube is an art.

  27. #12987
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wookie06 View Post
    Did anyone else get the ad during the election with some whiny kid complaining about politicians being entitled to your vote but vote democrat anyway? I watched the whole thing once just because but skipped it every other chance I got. There couldn't possibly be much honest data about me to suggest that could have been an effective ad for me so I imagine there is a magic dollar amount you can pay google to force content on everyone. I would link the video but I don't know enough identifiable information about it to effectively search for it.
    No, and I was living in the United States during the election and was absolutely 100% certain flagged as a Democrat. That sounds like the kind of ad you’d use to rouse spite in a Republican on the fence about turning up to vote. Did that describe you? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    I’d guess the PragerU ad was along the same lines. Liberals aren’t your enemy, so don’t get scared when all of your favourite billionaires hop parties after the US economy eats it.

  28. #12988
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    Christ, I haven’t even mentioned the small business brick wall yet, have I? All of those small companies in the supply chain that have been hiring and planning expansions to keep up with increased domestic demand, even though its from large corporations doing accelerated capital expenditure in the first half of the year to get in front of announced tariffs.

    The US government is such a dumpster fire. You can’t even blame Bad Cheeto Man for this stuff, George W Bush did the same crap.

  29. #12989
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    With respect to Krugman, I don't see how you can blame Trump for what's basically just a continuum of increasingly terrible decisions made by the monetarist-dominated neoliberal reset era. Donald Trump made it worse by trying to goose his poll numbers but he hasn't really done anything that past administrations haven't done (economically speaking).
    Krugman unfortunately is one of those liberals so angry that Trump "isn't presidential" he can't help but tie everything back.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    The stock market crashed 4 years ago. Corporations have been loading up on debt for leveraged share repurchase programs, trying to keep their share prices high despite flagging [real] profitability. Although it's gotten much worse since 2014 (and much much worse since 2009) it's been happening for more than 20 years. It's basically a debt-equity swap between corporations and mutual funds/foreign investors. Finance and economics people have been quietly expressing alarm about this since 2016, at least, since some of these companies - big companies - have so much debt maturing in the next few years that they won't be able to refinance if interest rates go up.

    If any of this language reminds you of 2008,
    https://seekingalpha.com/article/423...investors-well

    Yeah, when you read ^^^ what investors read, what's going on is really clear. "No, the debt isn't an issue.." "Are you investing it into the company..?" "No, creating shareholder equity.."

  30. #12990
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    "Its fine that Home Depot has 20 times more debt than equity, because it's only 1.5x EBITDA"

    is like having 1.5x your annual income on credit cards

  31. #12991
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    ITS FINE.

  32. #12992
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    I've been getting 5% raises every year since I started working, so that means I'll be making $190k a year by the time I'm 65. Time to buy that $2 million house!

    - a mcdonalds employee making $8 an hour

    - also, financial analysts talking about how companies debt loading isn't a problem because their projected revenue is outpacing debt service. lol.

  33. #12993
    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    That sounds like the kind of ad you’d use to rouse spite in a Republican on the fence about turning up to vote. Did that describe you? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
    I was thinking about how critical I was of Trump during the presidential primary and how I refused to support him during the general so, in theory the ad might have accurately targeted me two years later but I turn up to vote and was not on the fence during the mid-term primary or general election. I did not vote for establishment candidates during the primary but I did also did not vote against the senate candidate (Blackburn) in the general. If I remember right, the other establishment choices were mostly defeated in the primary. Anyway, even if the ad accurately targeted me the ad was soooo annoying [to me anyway] that it never had a chance. But democrats picked up some house seats so perhaps ads like that were effective with some.
    "I would rather claim to be an uneducated man than be mal-educated and claim to be otherwise." - Wookie 03:16


  34. #12994
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wookie06 View Post
    I was thinking about how critical I was of Trump during the presidential primary and how I refused to support him during the general so, in theory the ad might have accurately targeted me two years later but I turn up to vote and was not on the fence during the mid-term primary or general election. I did not vote for establishment candidates during the primary but I did also did not vote against the senate candidate (Blackburn) in the general. If I remember right, the other establishment choices were mostly defeated in the primary. Anyway, even if the ad accurately targeted me the ad was soooo annoying [to me anyway] that it never had a chance. But democrats picked up some house seats so perhaps ads like that were effective with some.
    Used by Republicans to turn out the Republican vote against annoying Democrats.

  35. #12995
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    "Its fine that Home Depot has 20 times more debt than equity, because it's only 1.5x EBITDA"

    is like having 1.5x your annual income on credit cards
    We should be far more concerned by this as a society.

    What do buybacks/dividends means? It means companies have "excess cash", in the usual understanding, but nothing to spend it on. They don't feel there's room for growth, no acquisitions to make. Well we know there are still acquisitions galore.

    This means we have one of two scenarios to explain why stock buybacks are being used. One is that companies can grow, but are being mismanaged by a cabal of criminal CEOs who are mismanaging the company in order to tinker with stock prices. In the other, the United States simply can't grow enough and these companies are too efficient. Neither of these are particularly pleasant alternatives.

    However, I think the first alternative is more likely, since most of these buybacks are leveraged. What do you do when the corporations your society runs are imploding themselves to enrich some friends? Whose head do you chop off?

    I wonder how increasing monopoly power is fitting into this equation..?

  36. #12996
    Ooh, nice! It would be interesting to see who is behind the video. I don't think that's the case but a nice theory.

  37. #12997
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    Companies have been doing leveraged M&A on top of this.

    Edit: among other things this is how private equity works. They buy a company and then the company issues bonds to finance its own acquisition.
    Last edited by Jon`C; 12-27-2018 at 08:29 PM.

  38. #12998
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post

    The US government is such a dumpster fire. You can’t even blame Bad Cheeto Man for this stuff, George W Bush did the same crap.

    People grossly overestimate the effect of the executive office on the economy. If you look at a graph of the GDP, you can't really tell when someone was elected.

  39. #12999
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    You can usually tell when there’s a new chairman of the federal reserve, though. Not in a good way mind you.

    It’s always a delight to see how many different forms of expansionary monetary policy they can invent. They’re really quite creative.

  40. #13000
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reid View Post
    I wonder how increasing monopoly power is fitting into this equation..?
    Actually this may be kind of obvious. Increasing monopoly power means corporations can earn fatter profits for less effort. Society (ultimately, you) end up paying this difference. But it's well known monopoly power also reduces incentives to R&D, hire news, or expand. And it quite literally means in itself that there isn't much competition.

    With no need to compete, what's the use in investing capital? Seriously, you're already raking in the dough, why bother yourself with revamping a production line when it takes effort and risk, why hire new people when you would need a new factory you couldn't operate at maximum.

    So they're just using their monopoly profits to pay themselves more.

    It still doesn't help explain why a CEO would literally put their company in a worse financial place and endanger it long term just to finance a stock party. That can only be explained through sheer greed and recklessness.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jon`C View Post
    Companies have been doing leveraged M&A on top of this.

    Edit: among other things this is how private equity works. They buy a company and then the company issues bonds to finance its own acquisition.
    ..yeah, this seems quite a bit like a "let's **** the stock prices" scenario, reading about it.

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