September 17, 2013

Establishment Press Largely Ignores Occupy Movement’s Second Anniversary Call To ‘End Capitalism’

A 6 p.m. Google News search on “Occupy Movement” (not in quotes, sorted by date) returned 69 items dated September 16 and 17.

The same search adding the word “capitalism” returned only two items. This is odd, because, as one of the two items returned noted, “capitalism” — as in ending it — is the core platform of the few who remain involved with the two year-old movement.


Economic Policy Institute Conference Call on Latest Census Bureau ‘Income and Poverty’ Report

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 12:34 pm

(Census Bureau’s “home page” for the report)

The Economic Policy Institute is a leftist think tank which perhaps inadvertently invited me to its conference call on the Census Bureau’s 2012 “Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage” report released today.

An initial obvious note from reading their email is that they’re really fond of citing income declines since 2000 but not since 2007. There was almost NO or very little decline 2000 to 2007 in most metrics. Obviously agenda-driven.


Liz Rose, Communications Director, began the proceedings.

President of EPI goes first.

Income basically went nowhere in 2012. Down overall, slightly up for non-elderly.

Median hourly wage was “stagnant or fell.”

None of this is surprising.

Men fell 0.5% in income; women up 1.6%. FT full-year men slightly up, women slightly down.

Wages have been stagnant for 10 years since 2002-2003, even for college grads (which actually fell this year).

Who gained from 2011-2012? Pretty much not anybody, it’s uneven across the board. But since 2009, only one group has regained income to the 2007, which is the top 5% of income-earners. Everyone below the top 5% has lost ground. Census supposedly doesn’t include stock market gains (not sure I believe that. But if it’s true, who has been President while in essence the rich have gotten richer).

Not seeing much growth in wages or jobs.

Next we have “Elise Gould” on poverty and health insurance.

Poverty rate unchanged at 15.0%. Kids 21.8%, or more than one-third of all in poverty. Working age poverty was 13.7%. Elderly 9.1%. 6.6% of the population is below one-half of the poverty line.

Ethnics: Black rate is 27.2%, Hispanic 25.x%.

50-year anniversary of war on poverty is Jan. 2014, and she insists that poverty would be worse without WOP programs. Then she claims unemployment benefits and SocSec are the reasons for lower poverty (both programs pre-dated WOP).

Rising inequality has kept poverty which should have gone to zero in the 1980s (sure …), has perpetuated poverty.

Uninsured still at 47-plus million.

2012 is the first time since 2000 rate of employer-provided insurance went “up” (58.3% to 58.4%). (Americans with coverage through work)

Non-insurance rate for non-elderly adults is up.

For 19-25, young adults getting on parent’s policies since 2010. This is the only group with higher employer coverage (by 0.5% — oh boy). But their workforce participation is lower.

Q&A (I had one, but they didn’t get to me) — had nothing meaningful until last question, which brought out the following:

  • Big EPI meme — “flat for 10 years.” What rubbish. It’s really “up a bit for 5 years,” followed by “losing it all and even more during the next 5 years.”
  • They want a “good stimulus program.” Zheesh. They already have had one, and what resulted?

NewsBusted (091713)

Filed under: NewsBusted — Tom @ 8:14 am

Here goes:

– American Workforce
– Adult Film Industry
– Bill Clinton
– Michelle Obama
– Junk Food
– Edward Snowden
– Anthony Weiner
– Marco Rubio
– Boston Mayor Menino
– Detroit
– Rush Limbaugh
– Dolce & Gabbana

Best Line: “A record 90 million Americans are no longer in the U.S. workforce. So basically the Democrats love poor people so much they’re making more of them.”

Tuesday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (091713)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:05 am

This open thread will stay at or near the top today. Rules are here. Possible comment fodder follows (updated sporadically). Other topics are also fair game.

9:30 a.m.: M. Stanton Evans, who has written the definitive, historically accurate defense of anti-communist Minnesota Senator Joe McCarthy (“Blacklisted by History: The Untold Story of Senator Joe McCarthy and His Fight Against America’s Enemies”) has written a tremendous essay addressing Diane West’s contention in her recent book (“American Betrayal“) that America’s government in the first half of the 1940s was “occupied” by Communists. Two-word summary: It was.

9:05 a.m.: Margaret Wente At the Toronto Globe and Mail“Barack Obama, the 98-pound weakling.”

8:25 a.m.: The image found here (HT Instapundit) shows a blatant, deliberate misinterpretation of the Second Amendment in an Advanced Placement high school textbook (“the people have a right to keep and bear arms in a state militia”). That point is vetted pretty well here.

In my view, there’s a larger point is in the rest of the image. Basically, the plain words of the Bill of Rights aren’t good enough, and the textbook’s authors feel that every amendment has to be rephrased and in the process often reinterpreted (e.g., they say that the idea of “separation of church and state” is embodied in the First Amendmeent, when it’s absolutely not). The original language would probably have taken up less space, and its meaning is still crystal clear.

This is unacceptable. Any school district using this text should discontinue it.

If the AP tests are based on these erroneous interpretations, we’ve got a bigger problem.

Positivity: Couple on a budget manage to organise £1 wedding

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 6:00 am

From the Scottish Highlands in the UK (HT to and related video at

Tuesday 3 Sep 2013 8:47 pm

A thrifty bride and groom have proved a wedding day need not cost a fortune after spending just £1 to celebrate their nuptials.

Georgina Porteous and Sid Innes asked guests to bring home-made food and drink to the reception, held in a barn at their home.

The bride’s mother Susanna Bichard, a church reader, conducted the ceremony and her aunt, Alison Wilson, baked the wedding cake and took the photographs.

Artist Georgina made the couple’s rings from antlers found in her garden and fashioned her own bouquet from flowers growing near her country home.

Even father of the bride Harry, 67, got in on the money-saving act – as a jazz saxophonist, he provided the entertainment. Apart from the £70 the couple had to pay for marriage fees, their only expense was the £1 Georgina paid for her wedding gown, which she bought from website Freecycle.

Sid, 32, wore a tweed suit he bought years ago from Marks and Spencer.

Questioning why couples spend up to £20,000 on a wedding, 36-year-old Georgina said: ‘The day is supposed to be about marrying the person you love. For us, that was all that mattered. We didn’t want or need a big, fancy affair.’ …

Go here for the rest of the story.